Monday, June 3, 2013

Killadelphia Preps

I'll be attending the Killadelphia Open 40k GT in a few weeks, and am frantically preparing...both painting and list/theory-hammer!

As for the list, I'm pretty much committed to the Flesh Hound/Seeker spam I've discussed before. I certainly don't think it's the strongest Daemon list possible, but it throws most armies on their back foot immediately (few people are prepared for getting charged turn 1!) and is a lot of fun to play...exciting to have that many things moving that fast!

The list:

Herald of Slaanesh (Steed, Greater Reward, Locus of Beguilement)
3 Fiends
10 Daemonettes
10 Daemonettes
10 Daemonettes
10 Plaguebearers
10 Plaguebearers
15 Fleshhounds
15 Fleshhounds
15 Seekers (, I had 5 points, figure she can eat a challenge when I want the Herald to beat face)
Soul Grinder (Nurgle, Phlegm)
Soul Grinder (Slaanesh, Torrent)
Soul Grinder (Slaanesh, Torrent)

There's really not a lot of strategy to this list...most games it's run forward, take whatever shots the enemy has, then charge with the Hounds and Seekers. Soul Grinders and Daemonettes clean up whatever is left. Soul Grinders can help clear out bubble-wrap on the charge-turn, and the Fiends can help when assaulting thru difficult terrain.

Sometimes this goes in reverse, though...the Grinders get thrown forward, when things are committed to kill the Grinders the rest of the army jumps on them. This is the plan vs. things like Nids, where getting the Seekers and Daemonettes in to the assaults they want to be in (killing Tervigons!) is challenging when they're surrounded by 100 termigants!

I don't have any real good answers for dealing with the new Tau. I've played about a half dozen games against them, and all have been unpleasant. My primary opponent has been Neil from the 11th Company Podcast...we play on Vassal pretty regularly, he gets another Daemon player to kick around and I get kicked around and learn a few tricks :)

In the first game against him, I basically ran straight ahead...I knew it was a bad idea, but really wanted to get a feel for how bad the shooting could be. I lost a Grinder, a unit of Dogs, and half the Seekers before charging. I lost half of the other unit of Dogs to overwatch (markerlights in overwatch are devastating!), killed two useless units of kroot, and lost the rest of the army the next turn.

In the second game, I tried to be a little more circumspect and force grinders down him, and this made it more of a game, but it was still very one-sided and he was in cleanup mode by turn you realize how good SMS are for late-game objective clearing?

In the latest game, which we're in the middle of, I've not moved forward much at all. I've stayed for the most part out of range of everything, with the plan being to jump on whichever unit moves forward for the relic with Soul Grinders. In 3 turns of shooting I've only lost a few models (plus a unit of hounds, which is my fault for lazy placement and lazy failure to pre-measure)...I've left the grinders back too far to get to the relic holder, so he'll likely be able to move him far away and get the win, but it's a solid plan that forces him to move out of his castle and lets me use mobility.

This, then, will likely be my plan vs. least those built around an Ethereal and Kroot/FW spam that makes it too painful to close in and charge. Those with minimal troops and/or markerlights I'll be able to follow the 'Charge!' gameplan.

So, this segues in to my thoughts on the new Tau.

Holy shit are they broken!

I say that with complete bitterness and nerd-rage as they are an EXTREMELY hard counter to virtually any Daemon Codex build one might assemble.

Are they really broken? No, but they are far and away the strongest 6e codex yet released, and in fact I put them on par with GK in 5e. They are, in my opinion, the top codex right now, and I expect they'll be placing well at GTs all over as soon as GW's backorder is caught up!

Why are they so powerful? Some stuff that I think makes them super-potent:

---Ethereals...50 points? Should be more like 150. Handing out Ld10 and an extra half-range shot to units in 12" is INCREDIBLE. Consider...within 15" each Fire Warrior has a Heavy Bolter. Pathfinders too.

---Markerlights! These got far better, completely removing cover for 2 lights, working in overwatch, and removing a lot of the resilience of many common units (example: or two markerlight hits from snap-shooting Pathfinders makes the snapshots from other units far more dangerous!)

---Supporting Fire. This is not going to effect every army the same, and a Tau army has to be positioned (and designed!) well to take advantage of it, but when the Tau player puts these things together, his "castle" becomes extremely difficult to get amongst.

---SMS! I nerd-rage about the SMS a lot. All these deck-chair units that folks try to hide behind LOS-blocking terrain to hold backfield objectives just become virtually useless. For me, that's Plaguebearers...for others it might be Warrior Acolytes, or Grots, or Scouts, or Cultists...all these will be killed by the handful when a well-built Tau army unleashes 6-8 Twin-linked SMS mid-late game!

Tau are here, and they will be destroying you. They are going to drastically change how all of us build our armies (for better or worse), and despite having a hatred for them because of how they affect my army, I'm quite excited to see how the 40k community evolves to handle this new list archetype: the super-gunline.

11 more painting days to go. I won't get anything done tonight (maybe basecoat on a few dogs as I unwind from gaming...playing Ed Miller at BFS tonight!). That leaves 10 days. I have nothing completely done. Seekers and all but 3 daemonettes are ready for basing, as are the 3 Fiends. The Soul Grinders are at the detail pick-out point, and my wife has been doing that for me...she's much more detail oriented on the painting than I am! The Plaguebearers are base-coat done, need sores and intestines and swords and horns. Lots. Of the 30 hounds, 10 are ready to be based, 15 are primer only, and 5 others (warhound stand-in until GW's backorders are fixed!) need Khorne-ified.

I sadly haven't been taking many pictures, here's the Seekers right after dipping.

I've done the dull-coat since, and it sadly took away a lot of the pop of the scales, so there will be some rework ahead, but it will do for now. I'm at the point that I'm just hoping to get everything "three-color" and based in time!

Thanks for reading! What are your thoughts on the new Tau? How will my Barbie-Dogs handle "the new hotness"? Are you going to Killadelphia? Hope to see you there!

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