Can you say, foreshadowing, boys and girls? I knew you could!
CliffNotes: Brent get's hit butt kicked and takes his only loss on the weekend in a great game against Allen from Colorado and his Vulcan-variant Space Marines.
Allen's army was just beautiful. I really loved the finish he achieved. Someone commented on his checkers and he said he loves using pens for his work. We got to talking and I promised to link the pens I use. I think we use the same brand of .005, but I've found some in color that gives me more options. Check it out.
Moving on, I put my stuff down at the table next to Kenny. We were naturally right next to each other, since we'd scored literally the same points in the kick-off game. He saw my opponent and made a face. "Look out, bro, he's tough."
Let me translate. "Yo, bro-man, G is a straight bolla. He'll rock the game, dig?"
SELF-EDIT. He's running Vulcan. And a Librarian with Null-Zone. SELF-EDIT.
Okay, sorry about the cursing. I know you don't want to hear language like that, but sometimes it slips out.
There's are lots of slight variations in the army, but I've said before that I believe properly built Vulcan Marines army is the toughest army I can face with my Bolt 'n Beast list. I liked this variation a lot, in the sense that I didn't want to face it.
*Librarian w Null-Zone and Avenger
*Thunder Hammer Terminators in a Land Raider Redeemer with a Multi-Melta
*3 Squads of 10 Marines with a Multi-Melta and a Flamer plus a Razorback with Heavy Bolters
Scouts with 3 Snipers, Missile Launcher, and Sgt. Telion
2 Land Speeder Typoons
Many armies suffer from extraneous Wargear or upgrades; this army squeezes in extra units by avoiding such, counting on the fantastic Vulcan to put the pain on the enemy. I've put a star on the units you'll see in any Salamanders variant - the rest is salt 'n' pepper to taste. Speeders and Predators are pretty standard too, but normally in the Multi-Melta/Heavy Flamer and full on Dakka Pred variants... so no star for them!
Still, it's important to remember many players make minor variations based on what works for them as a player, meaning it's best not to turn up your nose at unit options or choices you many not agree with. Such was the case here, I think, and my opinion was validated by the tight tactics he used.
There was a beauty of a move Allen pulled later - I'll point it out for you.
I put all the Fiends and the Heralds in the primary drop... which would have been great. *sigh* I could have put the Fiends in a position to charge his line while my Heralds started taking shots at Mech, but seriously what was I thinking? I know better.
Everyone's problem with Daemons is what I love about them: Deep Strike. The only way to handicap yourself is taking stupid chances - the best thing to do is split your army and let the game play out. Certainly one drop is always a bit better but not so much that you'll screw yourself 1/3 of the time. Unless you do what I did. I won't belabor the point, but it was seriously stupid and my only major mistake of the weekend.
To punish my hubris further, I suffer more mishaps in this game than the rest of the weekend combined. Stupid Daemons. Still, I dropped one unit of Plaguebearers close to the Scouts, preparing to tie them up in close combat on Turn 2. I was reasonably sure he wouldn't be able to kill them off before I got there, nor did he.
And that's the MOVE. Allen put the MOVE on 'em! Top-notch play!
What's so great about it? Basically, once Vulcan was free from the combat, the Heralds swooped in and assassinated him and the remainder of the Teenagers. It's part of the reason the 'Bearers were there, to draw out the Hammer. Had the Terminators piled out of the Land Raider as well, there is no doubt in my mind I'd have destroyed both units, Vulcan and the Terminators. I had more I could have brought to bear, including an assault - given how tough the Terminators are, they may have last through one turn but ultimately they'd have gone down.
Okay, let's put it this way. What's worse, an assault in action or an assault which hasn't been launched? By holding back the Terminators, who really weren't needed to kill off the 'Bearers, Allen was keeping his Hammer in reserve, maintaining the pressure on my line and forcing me to hold back options to deal with it.
I greatly admired this play; hopefully I've explained it well-enough so some of you can appreciate it with me.
Anyway, the game was still up in the air. Allen had the advantage, but I wasn't out of the game just yet.
Allen played a hell of a game and simply kicked my butt. From my perspective, I'd played the best game I could under the circumstances so I wasn't upset. I knew going in that I'd have issues, but frankly I made them worse. Looking back, the game would have been better if I'd played my army and not his.
So to speak.
One last point. Allen was kind enough to drop by a few days ago and offer some kind words. He also pointed out my dice weren't behaving... on Saturday, I simply couldn't make a 4-up save on my Tzeentch units - as in, count the number I made on one hand kinda bad.
My view is this: we make our own luck. While dice will play a part in this game, and sometimes dice will go south, we rarely remember when the averages work out in our favor. Luck waxes and wanes - it is what it is - but let's put that tired excuse to bed. Allen was being courteous and I appreciate it, but I'll never be that guy bemoaning my luck. Allen out-played me and I'll take my ass-kicking like a man, thank you!
Now hold me.