Monday, 25 November 2013

Character Wars: Snagla Vs Gittila

well the New Zealand blogs were, for a few weeks their, wailing on the special characters of warhammer. I could not see the reasoning myself, as their was only (in my humblest of opinions of course) two characters who were breaking the current game, and one of those was only their because no one wants to spend any points on flaming these days. One Thursdays musings led me to decide to test various special characters to see what was so wrong with them. So first to face off on the battlefield were the new and diminutive characters of the Orc & Goblins book, Snagla Grobspit and Gittila the Hunter.

Gittila the hunter or Snagla Grobspit, choices choices!

Points Cost:
Gittila: At 110 points for a special character he is definitely in the cheep and cheerful category. many state that the need to take a unit of wolf riders offsets this low points cost but I see it as a moot point anyway, you wouldn't run Gittila without a unit of wolf riders would you, that just wouldn't make sense.
Snagla: Coming in slightly higher at 115 points, Gittila seems to have the advantage here. Once more Snagla shares Gittila's need to bring a mob of spider riders with him. Again you wouldn't take one without the other, so there’s no point crying about added points from this.

Gittila: Gittila's skill set is made for one thing and one thing only, the death of 1000 cuts. Granting himself and his unit BS 4 and the quick to fire rule is a strong opening for any character, but when seen in the context that this is being added to a unit that already has the fast cavalry rule and a movement of 9" makes Gittila's "Howlerz" an annoying threat at least and a death sentence at best. As Ulda, Gittila's great wolf, allows the unit to re-roll flee or pursue rolls the Howlerz are not too shabby at mopping up other units leftovers as well.
Snagla: Snagla's skill set is made for the polar opposite of Gittila. He is a combat trooper pure and simple. Granting his unit the ambush rule, this though it is a risky ability to use is a great mental game to play on your opponent and might force him to completely redesign their game to avoid a fast unit in their rear. Ambush is not the only bonus to his arsenal, as the unit itself (known as the death creepers) also gain devastating charge, cause fear on the charge and have the hatred (Empire) rule. The last is very circumstantial but as it does not state rider only then on the charge both rider and mount are gaining an extra attack. This makes them more than capable of taking on units other goblin riders would go nowhere near, especially as if played right you will be behind the enemy at this point in time.

Gittila: well not as great here in my opinion. Gittila gets a magic piece of armour and a special bow. Gittila's armour, the Gruntalope skin armour, grants him a 4+ armour (bringing it up to a 3+for mounted) makes him a bit of a tank as goblins go. His Bone Bow is a multiple shot 3 bow, so a longer range than most Goblins can get. However multiple shots does bring his high BS back down a bit, so he didn’t hit quite as often as his unit.
Snagla: Snagla wins the weapon wars here quite frankly. With the Fangspike and sting of Snagla he has a good chance of bringing down most monsters, and can cause headaches for lightly armored characters. The Sting of Snagla is why I would primarily cast him as a pure combat dude as it is a one shot thrown weapon (though he is S4, so it hits slightly harder than most O&G shooting). With poisoned and D3 wounds it can cause some damage to multi wound creatures. The Fangspike is a hand weapon with the poisoned and D3 wounds ability. Let’s face it; with 3 attacks (4 on the charge) he can make problems for light armour multi wound creatures (like ogres).

Impact on the game
Well to be honest I want to give this to Snagla for a major reason. When it comes to the Orcs and Goblins, it’s really a go big or go home situation, as they are clearly designed to go into combat. In my experience darting round and shooting your opponent won’t allow you to win big (unless you are a dedicated gun line army like some I could mention). You have to be able to break the enemy in close combat if you’re going to get the big points, and the disruption that Snagla can cause combined with his strength in close combat makes him my pick of the better of the two. I know many might disagree but this is my feelings on the matter

So though he is the more expensive (by 5 points undoubtedly) in my opinion Snagla is the better Character overall, though with bad rolls he might not come grace your battlefield at all. When he works he is a better combatant than Gittila and more likely to turn a combat in your favor. Sure Ulda can turn a route into a massacre but for sheer damage potential I would much prefer the king of the gribbles to the wolf lord any day

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Too many coices

Well i have almost nailed the list that i think will be both fun and competitive for the Dark Elves. I would hate to be on either end of these which is always a good indicator. Maybe i will do one and then the other latter on. Who knows. I'm rambling now. List one (the most likely list) is...

Malus Darkblade
Supreme Sorceress (lvl 4, shadow)

Master BSB (cold one, 1+ save, other tricksters shard, dawnstone)
Master (cold one, 1+ save, ring of hotek)
Sorceress (lvl 1, fire, scroll)
33 Corsairs (2 hand weapons, full command)
2*5 Dark Riders (repeater crossbows, shields, musicians)

11 Cold One Knights (full command)
29 Executioners (full command)
3 Repeater Bolt Throwers
No subtlety at all but plenty of hitting power (what is happening to me that i would come to this list first).
The second list is...

High Beastmaster (scourgerunner chariot, charmed shield)
Supreme Sorceress (lvl 4, shadow)

Master BSB (sword of might, 1+ armour, dawnstone)

33 Corsairs (2 hand weapons, full command)
2*5 Dark Riders (repeater crossbows, musicians)

3 Hydras (flaming breath)
3 Repeater Bolt Throwers

2 Kharibdyss
So how many hydras can you kill?
thought it would be a bit of fun really.

what do people reckon? plausible?

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Skitterleap 2013

Ow ow ow ow ow, just five ways of describing the weekend. High praise for Sam for his laid back approach to running the tournament (helped by the majority of the players being able to sort their own problems out without having  to resort to the TO) and the introduction of the new paint score chart (a great way of getting feedback on your army and where you can go from here on) led to a great, if bloody weekend.

Unfortunately I forgot to bring batteries for my camera to the event (no, I don't have a smart phone yet. phones should be for calling, computers for internetting and camera's for picturing. Call me a dwarf if you want but its better to be specialized and not a jack of all trades) so i do not have any pretty pictures for you to puruse at your leasiure, you will have to make do with this pictures relating to my opposition...

1: Mike King; Lizard men (Dawn Attack)
Slaan, far too many Skinks for my liking, two ancient Stegs (with adorable baby Stegs in tow), temple gaurd and terradons. i was forced to deploy mainly on my left flank while mike was forced to deploy mainly center-left . the game swung a bit during the middle of the game but for a few very unlucky rolls mike lost his flank (Kroxi-Skink unit, ancient Steg and 3 Skink units) and lost the second ancient Steg to a carress and the great weapon of the Wight King and then had his temple gaurd charged in the front by the vamp and his ghost riders and the flank by some ASF Skellies (yay the Corpse cart did something). in the end the dust settled with a 15-5 victory to me. this was actually quite annoying for me as it ment i would have to Vs the lists i didn't want to like...

2: Caleb Rouse; Chaos Warriors (Blood & Glory)
Yaaay. I play near his list most weeks (the only problem at the club, no fluffy games) vsing Hamish. Nurgle Daemon prince, unkillable BSB, Throgg, 8 Trolls, 2 Chariots, 2 Chimeras, 3 Skull Crushers. he picked the side that had the only building, leaving me nowhere to hide from his monsters, chariots and cav. Yeah. So Scaedugengan did well to turn the flank while the Black Coach held up the Daemon Prince and Throgg for two turns. Scaedugengan then came in with the wraithes and ended up killing Throgg in combat while the wraiths dealt with the rest of the unit. Scaedugengan then did the impossible and KILLED THE UNKILLABLE BSB. However he could not pull off a perfect set and was killed (as usual) by the Daemon Prince. while this was all happening the Chimeras ate a unit of Zombies each and the Skeletons where walked over by the Crushers. in the end i had a unit of wraiths left. that's it. 0-20 (back to my usual performance).

3: Hamish Forbes; Ogres (Watchtower)
Hamish was running the dead 'ard (to use an Orc term) Ogres gutstar with a Slaughtermaster, Butcher, Firebelly, Bruiser, 11 Ironguts, 6 Bulls, 4 Leadbelchers, units of 2 and 4 Mournfang the Doggies and a Cannon. Now this was a case of READ THE RULES, as Hamish got the tower and proceeded to garrison it with the bulls. this was WRONG as only infantry can man it. this was huge as i would have been able to push my Skellies into it and hold it indefinitely. oh well. he moved the bulls out, the Ironguts in, and then was crapping himself as Scaedugengan came in turn after turn, slaughtering the butcher, then the bruiser, and then putting the Slaughtermaster on 1 wound. while this was happening he lost his Leadbelchers, large Mournfang and Bulls to ONE unit of Wraithes, as the other was magiced off the field. Hamish breathed a huge sigh of relief as the game came to an end at turn 6 as he could not survive another round of combat. without the tower it would have been a 11-9, with it he got a 15-5.

4: Charlie Lloyd; Dark Elves (Battle for the Pass)
Poor poor Charlie, mine was the worse list he could ever have drawn. a Khainite list led by Crone Helebron herself, and she was packing the only magical gubbins in his list. This turned into the coolest game of the weekend as it all came down to one redeeming combat, where Crones unit was completly surounded. with Skeletons in the front (that a hydra had failed over three rounds to do any damage to), Hex Wraithes in the flank, a Black Coach in the OTHER flank and Scaedugengan in the rear. Scaedugengan challenged out Crone (drawing Sam's attention as  the most epic combat of the round). Pretty much the brief was thus. Scaedugengan had to get three wounds out of his 6+ attacks (red fury) or crone would murder him without a second thought and endanger the entire army. I rolled. all 6 hit and then all 6 wounded... I could do it! but then the gods of fate, who had deserted Charlie all game, laughed in my face as he made 5 5+ ward saves! i had ignored one of his two cauldrons as it was turn 5 and needed to kill Crones unit. needless to say she turned him into offal. luckily the whole army survived the magical backlash and went on to kill all but crone and a unit of 10 Witches. 15-5 to me and both of our votes for best game of the weekend.

5: Ryan Lister; Warriors of Chaos (battleline)
Noooo! I was so close to the perfect pentagonal lineup this tournament! oh well. I had no high hopes going into this game, as Ryan's Warriors have run rampant in Scaedugengan's forces once before. packing the Slaanesh Daemon Prince (hisss), Unkillable disc BSB, a fire Sorcerer, 18 Warriors, 2 chariots, lots of dogs, a Chimera, 3 Dragon Ogres and 3 Skull Crushers. i bunkered my characters within a building and left the skeletons to bait the majority of his army in while i turned his flank. nothing went overly well this game except for the Black Coach once more severally stalling his Daemon Prince for 3 rounds (even with the warrior block backing them) and the disc BSB going into the flank of my Hexwraithes (currently mowing down Dragon Ogres at the time), failing to would them, then breaking and dying without a single wound being delt to him. however the combo of the other trickster shard and an irresistible Choir saw all chances of the Vampire surviving fade. 18-2 to Ryan

in the end i ended with 37 battle points and  22/25 painting points, much more than i thought i would get. in the end i came 20th, so at least i didn't add another wooden spoon to the collection.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Warma/Hordes journeymens league

With the clubs journeymen league starting in a weeks time my new Circle Orboros dudes (or dudets for my caster, Kaya). here she is!
For such small details they really managed to make it crisp.
I spent about 10 minutes trying to get the pupils on. in the end it was a "F*** it that will do" situation.
Pics of the warbeasts will follow soon.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

1st Colour tests

Its been far far far too long since i have posted pictures of my work benches output. To be fair this is because its very very low, but with the dark elves putting the wheels back on the hobby wagon i have some pics for you again (yay)

Not sure on the tummy, but then its the first time doing freehand abs

work in progress shades. just needing to do weapons and belts

Mark II list

I think this will lay down alot more hurt (and be harder to deal with at range too)

Supreme Sorceress (270)
LVL 4 (shadow), ring of Hotek
Master (157)
BSB, great weapon, heavy armour, sea dragon cloak, talisman of preservation, luck stone
31 Corsairs (381)
additional hand weapons, light armour, sea dragon cloaks, full command, standard of discipline
2×5 Dark Riders (220)
spears, repeater crossbows, shields, light armour, dark steeds, musician
28 executioners (411)
great weapons, heavy armour, full command, razor standard
2×5 Shades (180)
great weapons, repeater crossbows
3×Repeater Bolt Thrower (210)
hand weapons
2× Kharibdyss (320)
teeth, lots of teeth
2×5 Warlocks (250)
hand weapons and dark steeds

"Well that didn't seem to work..."

So with a title like that can you guess what happened? I said before that a gun line would remove the list from the field and the Wood Elves proved this to be completely and disastrously correct. At least in the second game the Executioners got to make Hamish wet himself slightly. However the ability to not fail your 3++ saves is so annoying, surely putting 20 wounds on him over 3 rounds would do something other than 1 wound but nooooooo.

So what would i change in the list for next time...

I: Drop the shooting
Dark elves cant compete with some as a shooting list, and it just doesn't have the punch without a shadow witch to back it up. So im gonna drop the large unit of riders and make the large shade smaller.

II: More hitty
With the riders dropped i think dropping the Bleakswords to bring a large unit of corsairs will be necessary. I'm not going to go for the witches as you need to invest a shiteload of points into them to keep them alive and their harder to control (i both love and hate frenzy on my savages). The 4+ armour and 2 attacks should be good enough.

III: More dakka
Another bolt thrower. Jesus Christ why didn't i do it before. Out ranging wood elves will be so fun.

i think i will bring some cold ones next time. I6 and lances are going to make problems for some, i just have to manage the stupidity somehow...

those are my thoughts. Anything people reckon i missed?

Monday, 7 October 2013

A counter blast for Mr Foote

My Dear friend Rex, how you have misjudged the situation in your recent post (The Dice Odyssey: Warlocks). Warlocks are so much more than a ward saved dark rider, and heres todays lesson on why...
I: Not just a dark rider
Where to start with this one. S4 base, 2 attacks base, poison BASE. Just in their profile they are so much more than a basic Dark Rider.

II: Miscasts be DAMNED!
Feel free to 6 dice the 4D6 S5 shots, as a miscast, rather than roll on the table and lose dice, causes D3 wounds on the unit that you still get to ward save. Classy, a unit with next to zero drawbacks for smashing out what might be the most abusive spell in the dark elf's arsenal, and no fear of sucking your general down the hole like the Grey Seers, Daemon Princes or Wood Elves do or losing any extra die from the casting pool.

III: Channel, the name of the game
Rex, four wizards means four channels. I'm not going to try and cast with every wizard every turn but they all grant me a modicum of additional power and allow me to pick and choose whats right for the job at hand that turn. Do i need protection? Come forth the metal sorceress. Do i need to drop stats? Come forth the Hag. Do i need to melt a face? Hello WARLOCKS.

So worth the 25. Just as their fluff dictates, they are a suicide unit of the highest caliber. A Tool to be used and thrown away. This is the Dark Elf creed. the week wither and only the strong shall survive. Thus will it be Thursday Rex. Thus shall it be...

P.S: If i lose on Thursday i will blame anything but the warlocks, Rex's list seems to be a good counter to mine...

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Unmentioned bonus's in the new Dark Elves

Perusing the new book is great fun, Matt Ward has expanded on the Dark Elves history (albeit with a very strong biased, which i love) and created great rivalries between the major factions of the cities. The best part though is the rules themselves. Yes we know witch elves are now very strong, and that murderous prowess has turned the dark elves into the nastiest combat troops of the Elven kingdoms. however their are some small gems i think were not covered properly in the Kiwihammer podcast's review (if you haven't listened to it yet, i recommend it, though put a bit of time aside if you are going to

I: High Beastmaster on Scourgerunner Chariot
now everyone's kinda lampooned the Scourgerunner as a waste of points, well their kinda true for the normal version, but as a mobile artillery piece when a High Beastmaster is mounted on it could be a good time. BS 7 will mean that long range and move will still hit on a 2+, and at S7 bolt thrower (meaning it can pierce ranks and allows no armour saves doing D3 wounds) makes it a strong contender for anti Daemon Prince, just pepper it with the repeaters first to remove that annoying charmed shield.

II: Corsairs
Breezed over in the podcast, i reckon these guys are going to end up being the favorite choice over the unpredictable Witch Elves in my opinion. They have lost their slaving rule (unless Lokhier is in the unit) and their sea serpent banner and have gone up 1 point when armed (additional hand weapon or repeater crossbow pistol, your choice depending on what you need. Probably the additional hand weapon though), giving them the same cost as a Witch Elf. Where a Witch Elf is the glass cannon though the corsair is the rock you can build a reliable force around. The sea dragon cloaks now just grant scaly skin 5+ straight, with no drop in combat, making them a reliable 4+ armour save to back up their 2 attacks. Also not having frenzy makes them easier to control, not having to worry about racing off after a fleeing enemy if you don't want too. Personally they would be my first choice over the Witches.

III: Executioners are now your pals
OK Executioners were covered extensively. Lets face it the can openers are going to be everywhere  nowadays but it is a buff that was not mentioned that i am addressing (and will be exploiting). Their is no longer the Khainite rule in the army book. For those who never played Dark Elves under previous additions the units marked Khainite could not be joined by non Khainite heroes, limiting you considerably to Assassins and Hags. Khainite however is history, and though the Witch Elves have a special rule for any uninducted heroes their is nothing to stop you putting Masters, Dreadlords or Sorceress's into the unit.

IV: The armour of grief
Kouran Darkhand is a great anomalie in the dark elf book. not only does he make Black Guard good again, but the wording of his equipment might make him one of the most hilarious suiciders in the book. with the usual always strike first, murderous prowess and eternal hatred that marks his profession, he also grants unbreakable to his unit (always handy). however the combo of the Crimson Death and the Armour of Grief is brilliant. 3 ASF S6 attacks that re-roll 1's to wound will hurt alot, but then when you go to strike him back he gets to inflict an instant S5 hit on his opponent for every attack that HITS him. Not wound. HITS. the opponent i assume will still be able to wound if he is killed by these out of sinc attacks but it allows you to play some great mind games with anyone who would dare challenge the Captain of the Black Guard.

V: Darkblade
The tales of Malus Darkblade are possibly one of the most successful Black Library series, and was the catalyst into my love of the Dark brethren. His ruthless exploits, his backstabbing, his arrogance and his hate made for a series of novels that oozed with character. Now the Darkblade has shrugged off the poor Herodom of the last Army book and has stacked his claim to Lordship. One of the few non Black Guard to have the Eternal hatred rule (alongside Malekith himself) Malus not only sports an epic profile and constant re-rolls to hit (no matter what) but also a weapon that allows no armour save and re-rolls to wound. Match this with the power of the Daemon Tz'arkan and you have a character who is possibly the second best glass cannon in the new book (close behind Hellebron herself). Not only this but Spite has been buffed. 3 attacks (one more than the average Cold one like last incarnation) and again removing stupidity from his unit will make Malus and his steed a must for the Black Knight bus these days, but Spite also now has eternal hatred too, the only creature in the book to have any form of re-roll. I really hope to see Malus gracing the battlefields a lot more than he did, for he is now well and truly worth his points.

Saturday, 5 October 2013

First musings on possible Dark Elf lists

The Elfes Noir have arrived and i have been racking my brain for the last hour working on what i reckon would be the best combination of the AMAZING options available in the list. In my opinion everything bar the Scourge-runner and Medusa has a definite use in the lists to come. However this is the one i suspect might have the best balance when it comes to scenarios with drops, banners and building huggers. We will see how it pans out.

My final plan was a run around set to put lots of shots out and set up the bus to use their can openers on anything the rest cant deal with. so...

Supreme Sorceress: 320
LVL 4 (lore of dark magic), the cloak of twilight, dark Pegasus

Sorceress: 150
LVL 2 (lore of metal), tome of furion, dark steed

Master Battle Standard Bearer: 132
halberd, heavy armour, sea dragon cloak, dragonhelm, opal amulet

9 Dark Riders: 210
spears, light armour, shields, repeater crossbows, dark steeds, full command

5 Dark Riders: 105
spears, light armour, repeater crossbows, musician, dark steeds

5 Dark Riders: 105
spears, light armour, repeater crossbows, musician, dark steeds

20 Bleakswords: 210
hand weapons, light armour, shields, full command

30 Har Ganeth Executioners: 435
great weapons, heavy armour, full command, razor standard

10 Shades: 190
hand weapons, repeater crossbows, full command

5 Shades: 80
hand weapons, repeater crossbows

Repeater Bolt Throwers: 70
Repeater Bolt Throwers: 70
Repeater Bolt Throwers: 70

5 Doomfire Warlocks: 125
hand weapons, dark steeds

5 Doomfire Warlocks: 125
hand weapons, dark steeds

TOTAL: 2397

So only two units that aren't in some small way expendable, but generally a tip & run setup (for those who play Brits in FOW)

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

The Lore Of Dark Magic

We are less than four days away from the release of the new Dark Elves, and so far the general consensus has been alot of good with a dash of terribad. With the grainy pre-release pictures of the miniatures and rules surfacing I, understandably curious, squinted my eyes to see what I could make out about the Lore if Dark Magic. Boy was I in for a shock when I read it! as evil a lore I have yet to read in the current game, and can now see why the High Elves needed their 2+ ward against magic. heres the breakdown...

Also worthy of note is that all Dark Elf Wizzards gain +1 to cast their spells (O.O)

Lore attribute: Spiteful conjuration
when a Dark Magic Hex, Direct damage or Magic missile is cast with a double of any kind and not dispeled, the unit will suffer 2D6 extra S1 armour piercing hits. if it is cast with a triple of any kind it will suffer 3D6 extra S1 armour piercing hits.
So starting off with a bang. All but two of the lores spells benefits from this, and you never know when an extra wound will help out.

Signature spell A: Power Of Darkness (8+)
An Augment spell that is cast on the sorceresses unit, granting it +1S. In addition the sorceress regains D3 magic die, but if a 3 is rolled then the sorceress will lose a wound.
So a sting in the tail, but when combined with the spell soul stealer its not that big a drawback.

Signature spell B: Doombolt (12+/24+)
 A Magic Missile with a range of 18". It causes 2D6 S5 hits on a unit, or 4D6 if boosted.
Wowwee, seriously having this as a signature means its a guaranteed pick up.  Also it is one of the two spells that the Warlock unit gets access to, making it a potent fast cavalry choice.

1: Chillwind (3+)
A Magic Missile with a range of 24", it causes 1D6 S2 hits. If any wounds are caused the affected unit suffers -1 BS until the start of the casters next magic phase.
usable, but most likely the one to be subbed out for Doombolt.

2: Word Of Pain (9+/12+)
A Hex with a range of 24", the target unit will suffer -D3 to their WS and BS. If you boost the spell it will also lose the D3 points from its S and I as well.
A very nice hex their. with high WS across the army, even dropping one point could really tip the balance further into your favor. Also combos well with Bladewind.

3: Bladewind (9+)
A Direct Damage spell with a range of 24". every model in the target unit must pass a WS test or suffer a S4 hit with the armour piercing special rule.
Heres the horde killer. Most large units  don't have stellar WS so should be seeing at least half being hit, and a 4+ saves are needed for their to be any chance of blocking it.

4: Shroud Of Despair (10+)
a Hex that affects any enemy unit within 12" of the caster until the casters next magic phase. Any affected units cannot use the hold your ground! or inspiring presences rules. if any affected unit fails any type of  LD test then all other affected units suffer -1LD per failed test.
wowowowowowo. WHAT A HEX! And for only a 10+ to cast when your lvl 4 has 5+ to cast!

5: Soul Stealer (11+/14+)
A Direct Damage spell that allows you to place a small template anywhere within 18" of the caster and then scattering it D6". Any model hit suffers a S2 hit with no armour saves allowed. For every wound caused you roll a dice, and for every 4+ you gain a wound (up to a maximum of 10) for the rest of the game. Its boosted version increases the range to 36".
Not a strong spell, but the ability to cover many troops with it will guarantee a couple of wounds, and theirfore about half of those will heal the caster. One way to keep her in the fight, and again at a relatively low casting value.

6: Anzipal's Black Horror (15+/25+)
A Magical Vortex that moves the small template an artillery dice × your magic level in inches in your chosen direction. Every model passed over must pass a S test or die instantly with no armour saves allowed (ward saves or regeneration saves are fine). It can be boosted to a large template. If a misfire is rolled center the template on the wizard and scatter it D6".
the typical horrible magic vortex of DOOM. however unlike the original rulebook spells it allows ward saves (which i think is what was needed really). At least the spell once more synchronizes with the word of pain.

Their it is. A nasty lore of damage and hex's designed to make your opponents cry like baby's (or High Elves). I will definitely be testing the viability of a Supreme Sorceress on dark Pegasus and two units of Warlocks (for fodering boosted Doombolts without fear for the sorceress)

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Oh please dont let it be so!

Everyone who knows me knows that i have been hankering for the new Dark Elves since the release was practically confirmed a month ago. I am very impressed by the majority of the new miniatures that are being released, and know i will probably be replacing my current Crossbows and spears with the new spearmen miniatures as i really like their look, since they tie in with the look of the Cold One Knights perfectly. however here we come to the crux of my current dilemma. two of the rumored rules changes (of which, i am told, their are many)

1. Hydras are losing regeneration, moving to special and must purchase their breath weapon:
Now i don't get this decision. The Hydra was, in the last incursion of the book, massively overpowered for its points. However in an army with average armour saves of 5+ and toughness 3 the Hydra was the bulwark that could help take the edge off this problem with its toughness 5, 4+ armour and 4+ regeneration saves. By removing regeneration it is now very vulnerable to small arms fire. I hope it has dropped at least to 150 points for this loss, but i doubt it. Also it is a giant bloody serpent from the dark places of the world where only the shades dare venture, how is it suddenly not hard to find!

Now anyone who wasn't a fluff fiend like me might be jumping for joy about acquiring such a powerful special rule. Merging with the Elves high initiative they will now be a threat in prolonged combat on a scale that was just not their with hatred. However it will, in one fell swoop, remove the best part of the Dark Elves, their hate. They are NOT poncy High Elves. They are the bitter and twisted kin from across the sea who hate everything about their current situation, and blame their haughty-taughty kin for their predicament. The only way i think Games Workshop could pull this back and say "see, SEE, we had a plan all along" would be to then go and give the Wood Elves ASF too, making it an inherent trait of the Elves in General.

Whooo, since i generally like to give the benefit of the doubt with rules changes its not often that i rage about them. I just hope it pans out in the general scheme of things, and that they haven't just striped one of my favorite races of their most defining features... Heres hoping


Congratulations Joshie boy for getting the second quiz question right. I will grant you the boon of the silver goblin next time im round for a board games evening. For those others who were a little on the fence again, here is the answer

How many English Monarchs (after the invasion of William the Conqueror in 1066) have been assassinated?

Well the answer is: only two!
Almost 950 years of rule and 41 Monarchs, yet only 2 of them were successfully assassinated (i know James and Victoria both were attempted too, but they were very lucky). Who were these unfortunate individuals you might ask? they were:

Edward II (reigned: 1307-1327)
Remember the lick-spittle of a prince in the movie Braveheart? That was Edward II. After a reign marked by financial incompetence, constant military defeat at the hands of Robert the Bruce and plenty of scandals Edward was killed at Berkley Castle on the 21st of September 1327. It was almost certainly ordered by his wife Isabella in order to put their son Edward III on the throne. No one can quite agree exactly how he died but strangulation or suffocation are widely regarded as the cause. Their is a story that he was killed by a red hot poker up the anus but this was most likely an erroneous tale in order to further discredit him.


 Henry VI (reigned: 1422-1461 and again from 1470-1471)
A pious and Peaceful man, he tried to end the 100 years war with his marriage to Margaret of Anjou. however he was not prepared for the dynastic war that broke out half way through his reign known as the war of the roses. After a mental breakdown at the loss of Bordeaux in 1453 Henry was an absentee monarch for a year, as he was completely unaware of everything happening around him, including the birth of his son. During this year the Duke of York pressed his claim as a more worthy ruler of England, so that on his return to sanity in 1454 the Duke raised forces to press his claim. even though the Duke was killed in 1460 Henry was imprisoned and his family were forced to flee to Scotland in 1461. Margret led a successful campaign in 1470, with the backing of the French king Louis XI and the Earl of Warwick, to put Henry back on the throne. However 6 months latter Henry was once more in prison and his son was killed soon after at the battle of Tewkesbury. He Died in mysterious circumstances on the night of May 21st. The Yorkist's claimed he died of a broken heart at the news of his sons death, yet many now agree that the Duke of York had ordered his murder before his coronation the day after.

Friday, 20 September 2013

Okie Dokie; Quiz Mrk II

Here goes after such a ridiculously hard question last week i thought i would make this weeks question somewhat easier (at least one that a guess could quite easily be attempted). Now as before i am going to be trusting and ask you to have a go without looking it up online, as that's no fun. Pretend your at the pub in the middle of a quiz there (maybe drink several beers beforehand to really further this illusion). Nice and tipsy? OK here goes...

How many English Monarchs (after the invasion of William the Conqueror in 1066) have been assassinated?

A silver goblin will go to the first person to get the right answer, and a golden goblin will act as a bonus for the first person to both get it correct as well as name and date at least one of the monarchs or assassins.

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Astartes Ultra – A Complete Ultramarines Chapter

Do you love Space Marines?

Have you ever wanted to own an entire chapter?

Would you like too?

Well you can... for $20,000

I kid you not, games workshop today posted their Astartes Ultra- A Complete Ultramarines Chapter to their online store. A set listed at a WHOPPING $20,685 NZ. I would be surprised (but actually not shocked, i know some 40k players with more money than sense) if they even managed to shift one in New Zealand. Good luck Games Workshop, you have set a high bar to beat for biggest one off blowout for miniature producers everywhere.

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Oh Dear...

Well that attempt to start a novel new distraction flopped a bit. To be fair the question was going to be almost impossible even if you knew exactly what it was you were talking about.

the calculation (5×4×3)×(263)×(26!/6!10!210)= was first used in the 1930's to describe what possibility?
Well let me transport you back 90 years or so to the dawn of Arthur Scherbius's new invention. An electro-mechanical rotor cipher that came to be known as.... ENIGMA.
a military issue ENIGMA machine, with plugboard
It was a wonder in its complexity. Used in the twenties by business's looking to keep their internal communications private, it was adopted by many countries like Germany and Poland. By the Thirties the German military had improved immeasurably on the original making a coding machine that was believed to be unbreakable. Typing in a letter sent an electrical signal through three of five possible rotors (of which the first moves every time a letter was plugged in, the second every 26 times the first moves and the third every 26 times the second moves), then back through them the other way to light up a new letter that the coder can write into an incoherent and completely random order. If that wasn't hard to follow, the military issue device also had a plug board that took the final letter and swapped it with another letter, of which their were ten possible pairs and six left over that didn't swap with anything...

Here is where the calculation fits in. It states the chance of working out the possible set up position of the ENIGMA machine on any ONE day! Here is the break down.

(WARNING: This next section contains some pretty heavy maths, of which I fail alot at. I have tried to explain it in as Leymanish a way as possible, but if fiddly numbers give you a headache look away now.)
OK, here goes...
(5×4×3) Was the chance that any three of the five rotors were used, as once one is fitted their is one less to chose from each time.
(263) Since each of the three rotors had 26 connectors it could have possibly been routed through, their is 26 possibilities for each rotors start position. Hence their are 26×26×26 possible setups for the rotors, or 263.
(26!/6!×10!×210) This is the tricky one depicting the switchboard. So their are 26 letters in the alphabet. How many ways can you arrange them? Well 26 ways×25 ways×24 ways×23 ways×22.... you get the picture. This is written as 26 factorial, or 26!.

Now because we only need 10 pairs of these letters we don't need to use them all. So we take the 6 possible letter combinations that will not swap. Since their are less each time we remove one this is once more a factorial number, or 6!.
Then we want to pair up the rest of the numbers, not caring what the two pairs are just that they are paired. Again the number dwindles after each one is set so this is 10!.
When two letters are in a pair, they are always going to swap, so they form a stable set. hence 210 represents the 10 pairs of 2. Lastly we divide all these possible switchboard combinations with the original 26! to get the possible switch board combos for one days setup...

So what was the possible number of setup options per day you may ask, well. it was a whopping
Over one hundred and fifty eight quin-trillion ways it could be set!

Does that not blow your mind! it does not even factor in the three more rotors that the German navy where issued with for their ENIGMA's. How the Polish cryptologists Marian RejewskiJerzy Różycki and Henryk Zygalski managed to break the computation and reverse engineer a rudimentary computer to work out possible combinations is far beyond me, and my hat therefore goes off to them.

Maybe this weeks question should be easier. we will see.

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Lets Start a Weekly Quiz?

As i have been working on top secret thingummy whatsits for the past week (and uni has left me with little time for that) i thought why not add a little weekly quiz to see what my friends general knowledge is like. This first weeks question is going to be a real dozzy and i will be so impressed with the first person to get it without looking it up on the internet that i will give them a precursor to the golden goblins i will be bringing to the next tournament (ohhhh exciting). So with out further adieu here it is.

the calculation (5×4×3)×(263)×(26!/6!10!210)= was first used in the 1930's to describe what possibility?
what in the worl... WHAT IS THAT!

And a bonus point if you can answer the equation

Happy hunting, I will post the correct answer and winner in the next few days

Friday, 16 August 2013

Just another reason i do not play 40K

What is it with GW and their arms races at the moment. in warhammer they are able to easily justify most of the stuff that they bring out (except possibly the Luminark, why did they think a sun laser was a good bit of fluff) but in 40K the arms race is frankly getting ridiculous.

Im not talking about marineception
lets put a marine within a marine
Im not talking about flying shoe-box's
this will DEFINITELY fly
Im here to talk about the final nail in the ridiculous space marine's coffin. that is...



Honestly how ridiculous does that look! What was their thought process for this! 

"We want the impression of an unbreachable suit of armour. So put armour plates on ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING. Oh but leave a small head, small heads are cool."
does this suit make my head look big?
I honestly don't know what they were doing, unless their meant to be the precursors to obliterators i can see no point for these travesties. 

Giants, no better than babys?

I love the smack talk that all war gamers seem to focus on when talking about monsters in their lists. "It will die straight away", "its got no saves/ too few wounds/ too random" or "its not worth its points compared to other monsters" are all things i have heard in regard to the oldest monster in warhammer, the giant.
"world, why do you no longer love me!"
I have not seen a giant on the other side of the field for over two years. I have run them once or twice, as i think they are a really hilarious addition that can cause utter bedlam in units it hits, if it doesn't roll a 1 (damn that yell and bawl).
Essentially the often pointed out faults of these behemoths are really racking up, those being...
  • Not tough enough to survive long into the battle
  • No form of saves (unless he's a painted orc giant)
  • Too easy to spot under true line of sight rules
  • Other monsters of roughly the same points are better
  • Takes too long to break an infantry block
  • Too random, and can hurt itself
However being the oldest monster i feel that they are the benchmark for other monsters. I often feel that the brainstorms for monsters in the GW studios go thus...
"We need a new monster for Dark Elves/ Wood Elves/ Brettonians/ Dwarves"
"How big?"
"Oh, ya know, giant sized"
"Why not make them the 4th army to be able to use them"
"NO, THEIR TERRIBLE NOW, give it giant stats but with wings and regen and armour and..."

Poor poor giants, losing the monster arms race. Being relagated to a fluffy little (well, not really) niche unit to be tromped out only when whole armies are being fielded.

What needs to happen to bring them back into a useful unit in the eyes of the general public. I have a solution which i doubt will make it broken, but will make it a feared opponent once more on the battlefield. and that is...

Titan: the thunder stomp of a monster with the titan special rule affects cavalry, chariots, monstrous infantry, monstrous beasts and monstrous cavalry, rather than just infantry, war beasts and swarms.

Ouch, i know, maybe a 20 point increase and slap that on him. Now you have to think twice before slagging him off. I dunno, what do you, the warhammer smack talkers, think?

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Yaargh, here comes me' first mate...

all uz deck 'andz listen up. Dis is da Admiral here. 

We'ez been waiting too long ta land and come kick some of dem 'Ummie bastards in da clangerz. but me new first mate's joined our rankz and is ready to walk over all dem who thinkz that Orks are an easy pickingz.
Might=right, and boy iz dis boy mighty. without further adiu.. adew.. small chat, meet Hullk
wez met Hullk Smashit off Dat jungle land, hes was smashing shipz at Skegi and was right keen to go smashing bigger boyz dan dem dragon boatz. not many az big az him though...

Hur Hur, Dis is gonna be good. WAAAAAAGH!

Monday, 5 August 2013

A field of slaughter

Call to arms has come to a close, and the podium positions were so tight going into the final round that any of the top 8 could have taken out the tournament. However, as predicted, the scion of Nurgle Sam Campbell took out the top prize, closely followed by Sam Whitt in second and Peter Dunn in third. Sam also took out the best painted prize with his beautiful looking Warriors of Slannesh list and (due to an 8 way tie for best sport) the prize went to... ME. 

the Vampires went much better than i ever thought i could do, though their were no real major victories. The Vampire Lord also managed to discover his new name, Sceadugengan, the shadow walker.
without further adieu, here were the games....

Game One: Dawn Attack
Opponent: Fern Campbell
for orcs and goblins ferns list was interesting, chariot mash, pump mash, artillery mash and mangler mash backed up by a small unit of savages and a HUGE unit of poisoned Night Goblins.huge units of goblins should not instill as much fear in the dead as they caused in this game, but since her deployment allocations were terrible (her bus on the right flank, most of the artillery on the left flank with only one mangler to protect it) i went for blood and pushed over the left flank, while the Hexwraiths ran in and held up her goblin bus for three turns. a nod to fern that she should have been able to take off the zombie dragon, but her artillery, though it could hit quite reliably, did a total of 2 wounds to the dragon the entire game. bad plays from me gave her my units of Hexwraiths and the Black Coach. as well as my chaff.
Final Score: 12-8 victory (better luck next time Fern)

Game Two: Blood And Glory
Opponent: Joel Van De Ven-Long
Empire with dual chickens, dual cannons, engineered hellblaster and a steam tank backed up by Knights and a heavens wizard. i never do well in blood and glory at tournaments (best outcome so far has been 1-19) so when i heard Joel's name i groaned inside, expecting the cannons and a light council to take me off. however this game could not have gone much better. the Zombie dragon was cannoned off first turn but Joel failed to get Sceadugengan, who bunkered with the skeletons for the rest of the game. with only two magic missiles on hand the celestial wizard could not contain the Hexwraiths, and when a Necromancer left his unit to sacrifice an inbattled unit of zombies to get a 30" Boosted vortex of doom through both units of chickens, his steam tank and his Halbardiers (who had 8 ranks) Joel was forced to fall back to Damage control. the game ended with neither side broken and both of us severely mauled. however this did mark my first ever victory over Joel, so i am certain a rematch will be saught.
Final Score: 12-8 victory

Game Three: Battle For The Pass
Opponent: Ryan Lister
Slannesh Daemon Prince, Unkillable Disk BSB, two Hell Cannons, and almost as much chaff as me. Ryan's Daemon prince completely dominated this game. Ryan could not fail an armour save on his daemon prince in Sceadugengan's titanic battle with him. over 6 rounds of combat he did a total of 1 wound to me to no wounds back. he must of got sick of the fight for he very underhandedly (hiss) he sent his BSB into the flank to crumble me. with a fire wizzard and his cannons mercilessly cutting down my Hexwraiths and my Skeletons engaged in the flank and front i had no choice but to concede. he had taken off everything but the zombies and i had a measly unit of Marauder Horsemen.
final score 0-20 Loss

Game Four: Meeting Engagement
Opponent: Neil Williamson
nothing went right for Neil in this game. he was rocking an almost exclusively close combat wood elves list that made use of a big block of Eternal Guard, a Treeman, two units of Wild Riders, a noble on an Eagle and a general on Dragon. his lack of wizards and and only one set of strangle root attacks meant that he could not harm the hex wraiths without being attacked in return. turn two saw Neils worst bit of luck came right off the bat when his general failed a 5" roll to charge the skeletons, allowing them to murder the eagle noble. compounding this in the very next round was the hex wraiths he had reduced to 4 men with strangle roots running over the Treeman and doing 3 flaming, no armour save, magical wounds that instantly felled him. since that point nothing seemed to go right, culminating in him losing his last unit of Wild Riders to a unit of zombies in the last turn. the game was also memorable for a pigeon shitting on my jacket half way through the day.
final score: 15-5 victory

Game Five: Battle Line
Opponent: Tane Woodley
when i first heard those words come out of James's mouth i groaned. Tane was rocking Dwarves and i have never come out well against Dwarven artillery. he had a Bugmen list of two Ranger units, two large miner blocks, a minor miner block backed up by a rune lord on anvil and two artillery pieces. on turn one, even though he had only one cannon in sight Tane managed to take off my zombie Dragon and put Sceadugengan on one wound (>.<) but misfired his anvil. in order to save him i opted to three dice invocation to put him back on full health... and miscast. Tanes quip "miscast never really do anything" then saw me dimensional cascade myself off the board. thankfully damage to my army was light as i passed a raft of Ld 5 tests. at this point i turned around and tried to outrun his dwarven advance (i know, its very rare dwarves find an opponent that is forced to go slower than them.) then in his turn three Tane once more misfired his anvil on basic power (2+). my quip "stop choosing to roll ones" saw him role a one and blow himself up... a cat and mouse chase ensued and in the last round of the last turn he finally got my wizards, and once more every unit passed their checks. a really fun game (i know, Dwarves give a fun game, who would have thunk it) and my vote for best opponent of the weekend.
Final Score: 4-16 Loss

final placing saw me tied with Fern, but because of a lack of flock on my bases she nobbled me at the post for 2 points on painting, leaving me sitting on 20th position and her on 18th. a great weekend all up.