Sunday, May 16, 2010

Ard Boyz 2010 Prelim Results

Showed up for a fun day at 'Ard Boyz yesterday and was not disapointed.  24 players came out but I can't say there was a ton of variety.  There were several Chaos, ork, BA, Nids, IG, rounded out by 1 Tau, 1 Spacewolf, and 1 Eldar.  There were no Vanilla marines which was a little suprising.  Several non represented codex which wasn't too surprising either (Daemons, Necron, DE, BT, DA, GK, WH).  It just clearly shows what people think the balance of good armies is right now.

I settled on an Ork list and fought off the urge to make last minute purchases to make the list 'better' since who knows if it would have helped.

Big Mek, PK, Evy Armor, Cybork, KFF
12 Kommandos w/ 2 Burnas, Snikrot
13 Lootas
4 Manz, 3 combis in Battlewagon w/ Deffrolla, BS, Armor, Grot Riggers, Red Paint
19 Shoota boyz w/ 2 BS, Nob PK/Bosspole
29 Slugga boyz w/ 3 Rokkits, Nob PK/Bosspole
29 Slugga boyz w/ 3 Rokkits, Nob PK/Bosspole
18 Ard Boyz, Nob PK/Bosspole
Deff Dread w/ 2 scorcha, Armor, Grot Riggers
3 Warbuggies w/ Rokkits
3 Killa Kans w/ KMB
Battlewagon w/ Deffrolla, BS, Armor, Grot Riggers, Red Paint, Stikkbomb Chukka

I felt the list had enough troops (with only one objective mission), a good amount of choppy, and lots of tank killing options though I knew the shooting would apply pressure most of it would be rather ineffective.

Game 1: Mike's Blood Angels
Astorath the Grim
Sanguinary Priest
Sanguinary Priest w/ Stormbolter
10 Assault Marines w/ 2 Meltaguns, PF in LRC w/ MM
10 Assault Marines w/ 2 Meltaguns, PF in LRC w/ MM
10 Assault Marines w/ 2 Flamer, PW, Hand Flamer, Melta Bombs in LR
9 Deathcompany
Death Company Dread w/ Talons
Storm Raven

This was the mission w/ 5 objectives which we pretty much put in far corners and the last in a somewhat central spot.  I got to go first and deployed.  I kept one unit of boyz in reserve.  Mike basically stacked in his 3 LR variants with Meph walking behind them and the Raven right behind picking up a cover save.

 End of Turn 1

In the 5 turns of playing it was positively bloody.  I could just not down the Stormraven but I kepted it stunned and in the backfield most of the game which meant he had a big point sink in the back.  Snikrot had 0 targets so I figured I'd throw him at the Raven but he couldn't do squat.  His dread jumped down and finished them off in one turn, but then had 36 Loota shots blow him off the table.

In the end I made him come to me because I knew I couldn't pop the Raiders from range.  Meph got over to charge Ghaz and the Manz who were trying to pop LRs and he killed 3 of the Manz (damn str 10) before taking 6 Ws to Klaws.  Had we ended on the top of 5 I had 4 objectives to his none.  On the bottom of 5 he was able to get his troops over to contest one, and his Strom Raven flew in to contest another due to my laziness in creating a buffer.  Either way 2-3 objectives was still a Major win, so I can't kick myself too much, but I picked up 0 bonus points but he had picked up 3.  17-3, not a bad start.

Game 2: James Chaos Marines
Prince w/ Wings, MoT, Warptime, WoC
Sorcerer w/ MoS, Lash, Plasma Pistol
Dreadnought w/ Plasma Cannon, HF
9 Noise Marines w/ 7 Sonic Blaseters and one BlastMaster, Champ w/ PW, Doom Siren, Sonic Blaster, Melta Bombs in Rhino w/ Havoc Launchers
10 Plague Marines w/ 2 Plasmaguns, Champ w/ PF, Combi Flamer in Rhino w/ Havoc Launcher
9 1ksons, Aspiring Sorc  w/ Melta Bombs, Gift of Chaos in Rhino w/ Havoc Launcher
10 Khorne Zerkers, Champ w/ PF in Rhino w/ Havoc Launchers
5 Chosen w/ 3 Meltas, 2 Flamers in Rhino w/ Hacvoc Launchers
5 Chosen w/ 3 Meltas, 2 Flamers in Rhino w/ Hacvoc Launchers

10 Havocs w/ 2 Meltaguns, 2 Flamers, Champ w/ IoK, PF, Combi Flamer in Rhino w/ Havoc Launcher

I found the army unuaual but James assured me that having all of the ruinous powers working together was really paying off for him in games so I looked forward to seeing it in action.  However just looking at bother are forces and I straight away knew we'd be playing for a tie.

I set up first and picked the corener of my liking and again kept one squad of boys in reserve.  He set up with everything on his table with Chosen rhinos positioned in such a way to give cover to multiple other rhinos.

He stole the initiative!  7 Havoc Launchers later and my Lootas were reduced to 7 but they stuck around.

The next few turns proceeded with us trading shots and me popping a few rhinos and him killing off handfuls of boyz.  Finally when Snikrot came in I figured I had to make my move so I prepared to call the Waagh.

Unfortunately in my haste I forgot to deploy my Ard Boyz from their wagon.  This left one side of my assault underwhelming and unsopported.  As because of the way things worked out Ghaz and the Manz had to go after 1ksons, not their choice target.
About here is where the Ard Boyz apparently enjoyed the comfort of the BW instead of Assaulting.
Snikrot assualted two rhinos and beat them up good, but it would take another two turns and some help from another squad before I could pop them.  Ghaz and the Manz traded kills with the 1ksons.  He tried to eventually Spawn Ghaz which would have been hilarious but he needed a 6 and couldn't close it.  Eventaully Ghaz would finish off the 1ksons but also be assaulted by the zerkers who would finish off the Manz.

The other side of combat didn't go great where it could have been a little better for me had I managed the early assault.  In the end I think it worked out in my favor still, but I think it would have been better.

With the minutes winding down and it being the bottom of the 5th I said 'look, I just want to shoot your dread and finish this combat and we'll call it a game.'  With agreement I popped the dread and Ghaz brought the Zerkers to 1/2.

In the end I had killed his DP, Sorcerer, 1ksons, a Chosen squad, his Dread, and gotten 1/2 pts for his Noise Marines, Zerkers, and other Chosen squad.  I had also popped or debilitated most of his rhinos.  VP for me 1407.

He had killd my KFF mek, Snik's Kommandos, the Lootas, the Manz, the Shoota boyz, the ard Boyz, and got 1/2 points for my Wagon and 1/2 for my buggies.  His VP 1197.

So with us being under 375 VP of each other a draw.  I was not shocked.  I'm still kicking myself for not deploying my Ard Boyz when I had meant to do so, but in the end I still don't know if it would have mattered.

He picked up a VP for having more troops in one table quarter, so the game rounded out 10-11.

At this point I know I'm out baring a miracle.  Still I manage to get on table 4 so if I can pull out a full Masacre and every other table can fail...

Game 3:  Jason's Eldar
I've played Jason's IG before and we've gotten to hang out a bit at most other tournaments so I was happy to play him in game 3 as I knew it would be fun > uber competition.

Farseer w/ Doom and Runes
5 Firedragons in Serpant w/ Stones, Shuriken Cannon and TL Shuriken Cannon
5 Firedragons in Serpant w/ Stones, Shuriken Cannon and TL Shuriken Cannon
9 Dire Avengers in Serpant w/ Stones, Shuriken Cannon and TL ML
9 Dire Avengers in Serpant w/ Stones, Shuriken Cannon and TL ML
10 Storm Gaurdians w/ 2 Flamers, Warlock w/ Embolden in Serpant w/ Stones, Shuriken Cannon and TL Lances
10 Storm Gaurdians w/ 2 Flamers, Warlock w/ Embolden in Serpant w/ Stones, Shuriken Cannon and TL Lances
10 Warp Spiders
3 Vipers w/ Scatter Laser and Shuriken Cannon
3 War Walkers w/ ML, Scatter Laser
Fire Prism w/ Stones, TL Shuriken Catapults, Prism Cannon
Fire Prism w/ Stones, TL Shuriken Catapults, Prism Cannon

So I'm looking at his list I think I have a chance.  He's got a potential 40+ KPs to my 22.  He wins roll off and wants to go 2nd.  I set up with cover, but he then sets everything in reserve.  Clearly his plan is to deny as many rounds of shooting at units to avoid giving up KPs.  I spend two turns moving everything forward trying to stay central so I can go wherever I'm needed.

 That tall building is the center, really.
Turn 2 and he gets under 1/2 the army which is surpring because he got them on 3+.  He moves one prism and two serps around for some shooting and the Vypers closest to my central force also laying down fire.  It was pretty much all ineffective (some dead boyz).

  You know what comes next... or do you?

For the comedy gold of the day his War Walker actually outflanked right next to my lootas.  After only being able to kill two of them in shooting he charged them.  I figured 'oh well they're dead, would have been nice to shoot at skimmers'.  He figured 'one maybe two rounds of combat and I'll free up these walkers to flank his army. 
Except at the end of turn 5 when we called the game I still had 3 Lootas tying up his 3 Walkers.  Every round was total fail for him and fearless/LD rolls from me.  It was the weirdest/hilarious/shocking thing I think either of us had seen all day.  I think both of us didn't think it was one of those 'this is a game changer' things, so we both just laughed as every round of combat went by in disbelief.
I'm not sure what else to say about this match.  I was on him quickly with my forces and his shooting was really REALLY dismal.  Sadly when Sniky came in he didn't have lots of options as Jason was a little cornered but had also spread out his Warp Spiders to block a lot of entry options for me.  Snik came in and killed 1/2 the spiders but some DA were able to jump in and help clean them off the table.  There were lots of exploding Eldar vehicles that did indeed inflict casualties on the boyz but it didn't really seem to matter as I had boyz to spare and each explosion brought bit KPs so it was worth it.
We called it toward the end of his 5 when he said he said he wasn't going to be able to close the gap at all (and there was only about 10 minutes left).  I had lost Snikrot (1kp), a BW (3kp) and a Slugga squad (1kp).  In theory had we finished the whole round he could have possible popped the rest of my shootas, and maybe picked up something like the Dread if his shooting could finally switch to 'effective'.
On the other side I had killed his Vypers (3 kp), both Dragons and their Serpants (8 kp), and a Gaurdian squad with their Seapant (4).  Had we gone another round I might have pulled down a little more, but again I don't think the gap would have varied much.  So in the end I got the Masacre, and I also pulled down all 4 Battle Point Modifiers and he got 1.  24-1.
So while I still managed my biggest point scoring round it was not enough to place.  The guys on table 1 had enough to carry them in to 1st and 3rd, with a gent on table 2 getting a Masacre for 2nd place.  Table 3 had a guy tie with my for points. 
So in the end it looked like:
1st Nids 62 pts
2nd Orks (lots and lots of boyz with Ghaz) 56 pts
3rd Chaos (PMs and Lash and Oblits) 52 pts
4th My Orks at 51 pts
Tied 4th Nids 51 pts
There was someone else with 50 pts and Liam was right biehind him with 47 pts with his Chaos.
It pretty much went exactly how I thought it would.  I thought I could do well in the objective mission, would probably tie in round 2, and had a good chance of going for the Massacre in round 3.  Being 1 pt out of 3rd is great and painful at the same time.  There was not much I think I could have done to really bang out any one of those bonus Battle Points.  A few where I could not given them up... but not really get any for myself.
I'm also glad I didn't bring my podding BT.  Game 1 would have been close.  I could have popped LRs and then been charged.  I don't know that would have gone well.  Game 2 is kinda in the same boat.  Yes I would have popped rhinos but would I have been able to deal with all that chaos marines action.  Test games with Liam say 'NOT LIKELY.'  Eldar would have danced around my ass all game and destroyed me.  So orks were indeed the better call.
However now all I can do is think about what I would have changed to make the list better.  Not surprisingly some of the things I was wanting to buy at the last minute would have made the list better.  I'll cover that in my next post.

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