Saturday, January 21, 2012

Road to Adepticon: Motivational

It's 2012, the last year on Earth. Before the next Presidential election the zombie hordes are due to destroy life as we know it. But before THAT, a completely different horde of strange and wonderful individuals will descend upon unsuspecting Chicago-land for a weekend of combat with plastic and white metal warriors.

This will be Team Snake Eyes third straight Team Tourney. We are currently toiling, brush and Exacto knife in hand, to bring some new additions to our Salamander force. We are excited about these reinforcements and hopefully they will meet or surpass the standards we have set for ourselves in previous years.

I had wanted to do something for my brothers-in-arms for the holidays, but, as often happens, the holiday hecticness made me put it off until now. So, lads, here is a late but heartfelt look back at where we've been in an attempt to energize us for the sprint toward April.

I give you the first ever Team Snake Eyes Motivational. Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Road to Adepticon 2012: Gaming the System

Well we have previously looked at the obvious requirement of getting your team together for the Adepticon Team Tournament.  I know, I know, we here at Team Snake Eyes are cutting edge bloggers continuously breaking new ground at every opportunity.

"Gaming the System" might not mean what you think it means.  I'm not referring to any sort of skeevy shenanigans that one might expect from lesser gamers, rather I mean taking at look at the Adepticon Team Tournament Rules and actually making a plan.  Shocking I know, but hear me out.

There are currently 120 teams registered for the tournament.  It is highly likely that there are other teams waitlisted since the opportunity to meet, and potentially play, me is unsurprisingly in high demand.  With this sort of competition it pays to have some idea of how you plan on getting as many points as possible.

The available points are as follows:

Battle Points (you know...winning the game) - 240 points (54% of total)
Commander's Heads (killing opponent HQ choices) - 32 points (7% of total)
Command Tokens (minimizing your use of special mission rules) - 32 points (7% of total)
Sportsmanship (not acting like "that guy" when you lose) - special
Appearance (paint your stuff you bums) - 60 points (14% of total)
Theme (do your 4 armies make sense together?) - 60 points (14% of total)
Tournament Quiz (harder than you might think actually) - 20 points (4% of total)
Team Spirit (how nuts are you about this tournament?) - special

The battle points are self explanatory.  You need to win as many games as you possibly can, by as big of a margin as you can possibly manage.  The commander's heads are also obvious.  Keep your HQ choices alive, and send the other team's HQ choices to an early retirement.  Each mission has a variety of wonky rules that adjust what constitutes a scoring unit and whatnot.  If you use your special rule, you lose a command token.  If you kill an enemy unit with a command token, then you gain one.  Your best bet here is to not use them unless you absolutely have to and kill everything your opponent puts on the table.  Sportsmanship is another category where you should be getting "easy" points.  Don't lose your cool, and work through any differences and you should provide an enjoyable game to your opponent.  Regarding appearance, I highly recommend reading the rules packet linked above.  You will be getting scored on overall painting, uniformity of your armies, detail work, highlighting, basing, and conversions.  The quiz is hard.  There's really not much more to say about that.  Spirit is the banners, shot glasses, costumes, etc. that some folks get into.  While this whole exercise benefits from large amounts of disposable income, this category in particular is just about how much money you are willing to spend.  Fortunately, it has no impact on your final score for the tournament.  Want a super-cool display board that shows the assault on the gates of Terra?  That gets you about 10 points.  Want a pizza box spray painted black with your team name on it?  That gets you about 3.  That difference equals about 1% of your total score and I don't even want to think about how much things like that cost.  While those kickass display boards are well...kickass, they are certainly not going to prevent you from scoring well if you don't have one.

In short, if you're at all interested in your team's final placement in the tournament, then make a plan.  It doesn't have to be as complex as entering into a land war in Asia, but put some thought into the enterprise.  To be honest, its exercises like this that add to our overall experience in the tournament.  If you find yourself at the tournament and wish to introduce yourself and/or your team, just look for this guy and say your piece.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Aerion's New Army

Well, maybe a LITTLE bit.

If by "new" you mean "purchased mostly when the army was released in Spring of 2011 and just now getting some love with the build and brush", that is.

Last year at Adepticon my long months of artistic guidance over the Salamander project was rewarded by a generous gift of some new models that had, just that very weekend in fact, been scattered Primarch-like across the globe by Games Workshop. As the imposing stack of Grey Knight kits was shoveled into my grateful arms I was both humbled and exhilarated. My humbleness has never waned, but my exuberance had to take a back seat to things like school, life, and various other projects.

This year another gift gave me a much needed impetus to see the Grey Knight project launched into the seas of possibility. My beloved wife, Lady Boxcars, signed me up for a Freeboota membership. For those who aren't aware (and honestly, if you're in the hobby and not, you're missing out), the lads at 40K Radio (link here) have a members only forum community collectively known as the "Freebootas". Membership has its privileges, but one big one is the friendly and supportive environment for lovers of our game.

Pursuant to that environment, the gang host an annual "Motivational Challenge". Basically they designate a goal for each month of the year for participants to accomplish. For example, January's goal was troops or "'Boota'z Choice" (i.e. whatever you want as long as it's something 40K related and you don't start it until the 1st of the month). If you complete your goal by the 15th you get a gold badge for your tracking bar. Complete it by the 30th and you get a silver. Get it done eventually and you get a bronze. As the year progresses you will ideally find that your chosen projects will be vacating your "to-do" shelf and ending up on the table.

I wanted to make my mark as a contributing member of the community so I dove in. I didn't want to start with troops (though, considering I actually had a smidgeon of free time between the holidays and the relaunch of school, I probably should have), so instead I took the "Boota'z Choice" option and got this guy out of the bitz box and prepped. On January 1 I primed him, and by the afternoon of January 4 I had this:

Smaller Draigo
"Of course they have armor cleaning stations in the warp. Why do you ask?"

So that makes two complete models for my Grey Knight army. I have an HQ and I have a Heavy (Dreadknight). That gives me about 1000 points, so I'm halfway there. Woot!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Thoughts on Black Templar Rumors

The following has been blatantly stolen from BOLS, who got it from Warseer
Begin quote:

ghost21 says:-relic dreadnaughts, like a mobile requiary bearer... is what i had heard

-expect bt to be the landraider spam army

via Marshal Laeroth
-there's going to be a named emperors champion, who's old by BT standards, and has been EC for a while. long enough to be better than the standard one.

-initiates will be cheaper, around 11 points, and neotyphes around 6pts. still, expect some drawbacks to this.

-there'll be a new named character on a bike with eternal warrior, and also eternal warrior killer.

-and possibly some dreadnought/knight style thing that fits with the rest of the army, in line with the big stuff from GK and BA.

-oh, last thing, possibly some upgrade that lets land raiders be destroyed by the enemy, but still 'live' for a turn. final shoot and move, the explode in a last ditch suicide run or someut.

via BloodCrusade

1)Helbrecht(Cheaper with rules to make Sword Brethren either Scoring or Troops)
2)Grimaldus(Rules update)
3)Special Champion
4)Draco(Will be making the transfer from White Dwarf to Codex with rule amendments)

These are the *guaranteed* Special Characters with rumors of:

1) Marshal/Castellan for drop pod armies(Reminiscent of one of our own's Custom Codex, believe it was Sigismund Himself?)
2)Terminator HQ(Allows for termies as scoring or as Troops for 'BlackWing')

Haven't heard anything of being allowed to bring Bikes as Troops if your 'Captain' rides one, which I'm thankful for. There's a Chapter for that and it's White Scars.

Special Units being brought to the Codex:

1)Chaplain Dreadnought(Same reroll hits on charge, probably fealess to all units with-in 6" like Grimaldus)
2)Durandal Dreadnought(Being brought from White Dwarf into the Codex, haven't heard the rules will change- maybe one more base attack?)
3)Assault Rhino Chassis(Been rumored/hoped for a long time, whether from the Rhino or a new vehicle on it's chassis)

End Quote.

Now, it's a well known fact that I've played Black Templars since I got back into the hobby. My regular opponents also know that I have been dreading a new codex. Why? Mainly because I don't trust GW to keep any of the rules I've become accustomed to, nor do I expect them to keep any of the BT flavor that I adore. My fears were reinforced recently with the Sisters of Battle WD codex. The way they stripped any and all association with the Inquisition rankled me to no end.

But I digress.

When it comes to my Templars I'm very possessive. I don't win with them very often (or with any other army for that matter), but I LIKE the way they play. I like the idea of a bunch of borderline heretics ("Codex? We don't need your stupid codex!") plying the space lanes in unfathomable numbers doing right by the Emperor in spite of his "loyal" servants wishes. I love that they hate psykers and want to rip their aberrant heads from their shoulders on sight (unless they're wearing shiny silver armor. Then they're okay.) I like the idea of a power armor wearing horde running screaming with pistols and chain swords while an impressive wall of Land Raider variants come rolling along carrying unlimited troops in Tactical Dreadnought Armor. If it sounds like I revel in the spam side of things, that's no accident. I should be allowed to wallow in greasy spam since my W/L/D record proves that it's not really all that spammy (at least in my hands).

So, what do I think of the above rumors? First, they're rumors. I concede that and, more importantly, I am not holding any semblance of breath regarding them. I am, however, hopeful that they are at least in part semi-accurate. Do they sound a little spammy? Of course. More so than, say, Space Wolves or Blood Angels? Nope. Not even close.

I hope the Land Raider rumor is true. It fits the flavor of Templars and it gives me the chance to build and paint more of the glorious tanks. They are my favorite because they are massive slabs of plastic, offering large tracts of flat surface upon which I can work my creativity. With a new air brush on the way (more on that once it arrives) I am imagining some serious murals and other gaudy bits of imagery.

I also find the idea of an "assault Rhino" intriguing. Hell, they can even charge me the extra points I've been spending on bare-bones Rhinos since the SM Codex came out. I'll even pony up the 3 points for the same smoke launchers every other army gets standard.

The hint that my currently useless and overpriced character models might actually find a place in my army makes me happy. Helbrecht is a model that I have both in metal and Finecast. Neither are painted. If these rumors are true that may change. If not, they may continue to collect dust on my "someday" shelf. The addition of other characters will please me, too. I love painting center pieces and that aspect has been lacking in the BT codex of editions past.

The cheaper infantry aspect works for me, too. The idea of those raving hordes of enhanced humanity screaming across the battlefield just does it for me. Throwing the lightly armored fodder in front appeases the Darwinist in me, too. Survive to the end of the game and you get power armor, Jimbo!

In closing, I freely admit that I'm anxious about a new codex. This latest batch of rumors, though, has soothed my nerves a tad. At the very least it tells me that someone somewhere is giving the ambiance of the army some consideration. That, in a nutshell, gives me hope.