On Fanboys (and Bell... and YTTH... and...)

Below is a comment I made on Stelek's site, Yes the Truth Hurts. You can find the thread here. I'm reproducing it here (because I'm lazy) because I'm hoping to get one of the Flylords to answer the question about the BOLSCON decision. Also Mkerr has started a blog, which is naturally instantly better and more popular than mine - check it out.

PS - Since I published this blog, Stelek posted a reply to my comment that's worth reading. I'm not going to reproduce it here, since it belongs to him and his site. I see where he's coming from, I just think he's a bit too 'black and white' sometimes. *shrugs* Who knows?

(a random picture, just 'cause)


You have some fair points. I've had issues with Reader, so I can see how that can happen. I'm also not arguing your right to feel the way you do about Bell.

But if your goal was to point out the hypocrisy inherent at BOLSCON or dog on the yes men in their monkeysphere, let's take that point by point.

(BTW, monkeysphere is too funny - perfect mental image; kudos.)

So part of the point here is the ban on allies for BOLSCON, especially when this is the same club that trounced everyone at the Gladiator. I assumed then, and I'm assuming now, that the decision had more to do with the new Guard codex, which came out in August - the same month as the event. The new codex was allowed, but given how new it was - not to mention the questions regarding the new application of the allies rules and how it was going to be interpreted - isn't it at the very least an understandable decision?

Even if you don't agree, isn't it at least reasonable?

We all know what they say about assumptions, so I'm going to ask. Smile

Regarding Gladiator, Mkerr, JWolf, and Goatboy told me they had strong reservations about allowing Forge World models and Titan rules at the Gladiator; remember, they were on the steering committee. When they were voted down, they built the combination they warned folks about. I believed them when they said it; it had the ring of truth, and they had no reason to lie about it. It is competitive to do the best you can under a given set of boundaries; I don't see how they're dickheads for doing it.

Unless you think they were dickheads before, then fair play - rock on mate.

Next point. Fanboys. Okay, they exist. They're on Bell, they're on YTTH. Librarium, Dakka, Warseer and so on. It's human nature to identify with groups. Personally I'm looking forward to the rumble.

I can picture it now! Music, cameras, action! People breaking out in song and dance for no apparent reason... West Side Story, baby! A staged fight scene, yea man!

That said, if you blog for any length of time you develop a 'twit filter.' I think we all know how to mine for gold in the 'comments' section of a blog, and ignore the inane posting of 12-year olds. No offense to 12-year olds though...

There are a lot of people who read and post on a number of sites. I've said for a long time that YTTH and Bell are by far my favorite, and they are. You can also find the King, Frank Fugger, Danny Internets, Fritz, Raptor, Goat, and Mort all over the place - all people that post here, and that's just off the top of my head. Hell, ChaosGerbil leaves little three-toed tracks everywhere! Everyone's consistent, and I wouldn't label any of them Fanboys.

But I take your point, a vocal majority does exist, but that's here too.

I get that people were upset about JWolf's comment on the awful joke told about Stelek's wife, but he apologized. That's never easy, especially given how little love is lost between the two sites, though lately that seems to be relaxing some. I don't think I'm the only person who's noticed the effort Stelek has made to moderate the more outrageous critiques.

I've met JWolf, and I can tell you he is a really decent guy, very chill, very laid back. I'm not trying to change anyone's mind about him or Bell - I just think there is room for a wide variety of folks in this hobby.

Anyway, sorry to ramble - take care - Brent


Bruce's Happy Face

Oh how a grown man can gloat! The last picture is the money shot, but let's take our time, shall we? I played in a smallish, out-of-town tournament last Saturday, so on Friday I played a little test game. It was a bit strange; due to space constraints and the tournament theme, it was 1500pts on a 4x4 board. I won't bore you with the details (yet) but the whole point was as an introduction to tournament play for new players, so round 1 was experienced players vs newbie, but all subsequent rounds the players were divided. I ended up winning the veteran bracket but my list was definitely improved by my test game with Bruce.

Who won. And was very, very happy about it. *sigh*

My set up. I have a very compact force of a Farseer with Council on Disks (Jetbikes; deal-wit'-it-yo) and two each 5-man Fire Dragons and Dire Avengers in Wave Serpents and Falcons, respectively. Note: this is very different from my normal, mixed arms approach, and I had something of an ephiphany about changing to suit the 'metagame,' which I will share in due course.

It was DOW. He set up with the DP behind the building; I reserved everything. This is an opening shot, with my air force working the flanks and the Council boosting straight at his line. Bruce didn't really fall for it - what I wanted was for him to engage with his DP and the rest of the force, including the 'zerkers in the Land Raider, so that I could tar pit and set up a counter attack as needed. Instead, Bruce sends his Prince toward my weak flank and drops his Terminators behind it to boot.

He dropped my Falcon; the Avengers hoofed it for cover while my Council tied up the Prince. So. *mmm* So... I'm not that experienced with using a Seer Council, only recently making moves with my Eldar in that direction, but I certainly learned firsthand how weak they can be in certain situations. They rely on survivability and the ability to cause wounds with a Witchblade - but these aren't unsavable, so what happens when your opponent doesn't play along and fail those wounds? You're in a war of attrition, baby, and that ain't the Eldar's bag.

Let's not drag it out. There were three objectives; so while the Council fights a boring battle with the Terminators over a tiny spot of ground neither cares about, the real battle was on the other side of the board. I parked on the objective in the upper right hand corner, my only real option, but of course Bruce promptly charges me to contest it… and all this allows the Berserkers in the Land Raider an easy walk to the last objective. I roll a 1 and mercifully the game ends. I wouldn't have fared better with more turns so I was glad enough to end it.

Here's the money shot. This isn't posed - I actually got this on camera mid-gloat... frankly, I think only a man's wife should see his silly-face, but I'm private that way. Ah well, enjoy it Bruce! You won, fair and square.

So, what did I learn? Well, 4x4 boards change the flow of the game. My tanks didn't have the room to properly play the flanks, while every unit in his army was able to support each other. Frankly, my list wasn't that great, and I was counting on this 'super unit' to do all the heavy lifting. That would have been fine if Bruce had played along, but of course counting on your opponent to play like an idiot isn't the best strategy.

More than anything though, I realized I've been fielding lists that just aren't me. I'd gotten away from the strategies I've developed over the years that play to my strengths; instead, I'd started trying to fashion lists that looked like the ones I've been reading online.

I scrapped that and played my game on Saturday. More later.


Stelek Was Here, Some Painting, Some Daemons

So Stelek has visited; it seems someone tipped him off to the last post.


So my post prompted a longish thread, and I enjoyed both the notoriety and the material. I've always wondered if I'd one day wake a sleeping giant, straddling the fence between the Flylords and Stelek as I do, being a fan of both, but Stelek has passed me by and dubbed me 'interesting' so I live to post another day. I have to admit this is probably so much mental masturbation, given that I'm a little fish in the big 'ol blogosphere and thus beneath attention.


I have to admit, I'm of the camp that thinks JWolf is probably the best player out there currently - and I'd probably net-stalk him if I wasn't so busy peeking in Jawa's window - but Stelek can craft a tight list, and I was glad to have him work on one for me.


So... nothing I've purchased can be used for the new army. Just my luck. Is Tzeentch a good option in Warhammer? Lonewolf is coming up soon and I'm planning on attending.

So I've been trying to reignite my interest in painting. I've pulled out Harry the Hammer to work on again. Here's the before.
I stopped working on him when I got 'painter's block.' I showed him to the Master Manipulator (every store needs one) and the Little Barrera at the local game store, our resident top painters. They liked the technique well enough but thought the composition was lacking. The weapon was a sticking point, the gold-in-bone... how's that going to hold up when he hits someone? I kinda thought it was magic, but I see the point. They also pointed out that the armor is nice enough that I should have showcased it rather than go the black route. Anyway, I'm still stuck.
So this is the miniature I've been putting some time into. I'm not building a Lizardman army, so it was a good model to paint for fun. No pressure.
Here's the top down, highlighting the helmet. I went with a more white-scale rather than the traditional bone colors.
Speaking of models I'm stuck on. Remember my Melmoth interlude? No? Not surprising; that was months ago, when only my mother read the blog. She's since abandoned me but I've picked up like three whole people now! Anyway, Melmoth isn't done - I've got more work to do on the sword - but he's close enough. I really enjoyed the quality of the Rackham resins, but my store has once again moved away from Confrontation, so I've put all these models away. Again.
Mmm... Blurry. I've done two more 20-minute miniatures this last week, just for fun. I'm eventually going to build my Vostroyans, so this was useful.
...And a blurry back shot...
Here's the 2nd 20-minute miniature, a Firewarrior. I've got an entire army if I ever get around to building it.
Will I? Build it, I mean? I don't know - there is always some project or another to work on. I've just got zero interest in Tau at the moment.


Stealing Content

I've borrowed some content from Gauthic, JWolf, Stelek, and Greenblowfly (doh!) today, largely 'cause I haven't had much time this weekend. My brother was married on Saturday and I've been studying for a major exam today - which is why I'm writing this at 5am. I had to take a break from the textbooks.

I've been following Gauthic's progress on his Dark Eldar with great interest. He's developing his Corsair/Dark Eldar look on the design strength of his converted Raider. A 180 spin and the voila! you have the prow of a ship.

In my post, "An Open Letter Re: Hard Boyz" JWolf posted a comment I've been meaning to highlight.

'... What is best changes over time, as the evolution of lists in a competitive environment naturally marginalizes the list that was best last tournament (or week, or yesterday). Building lists to beat the expected competition means making some choices that seem suboptimal in order to have all the right tools in the box. "Best of" conceptually tries to force every task into driving nails, which is great if you only have nails to drive, but 15 hammers sort of sucks for sawing boards and pouring a foundation.'

I think it's hard to argue against this, given what we're seeing happen practically every time a new book comes out. Anyway, the term 'Best Of' is a phrase Stelek coined and made popular on his site. I think it is useful to apply JWolf's comment to the 'Rock' armies, those lists that make use of a rock to smash the opposition with. This is my nifty little segue into Stelek's blog, where I found the following post enlightening.


Is it just me, or is he backing off the pedal a bit? I think his slightly more relaxed blogging style will pay dividends for him, assuming I'm not just reading more into it than exists.

And lastly Greenblowfly. I hesitate to include this at all, given that my last couple of attempts to give him fair treatment backfired on me. When I was searching my blog for JWolf's comment I happened across GBF's. He linked his blog here for anyone interested in his view on his game with Adam Trike, and more recently with my friend Bruce.


It seems he thought this site, which is all me (Brent from Wichita Falls, TX) was moderated by Bruce, a friend of mine. I'm responsible for this content: good, bad, or offensive. I commented on Adam's post about his rather infamous game with fellow WC member Greenblowfly, though if I recall I was far more offended by the moderator's shitty comments than anything else. (Adam had every reason in the world to air his views on a Wrecking Crew blog, but a moderator blasted him and did far more damage to the WC's tarnished image than any disagreement between Adam Trike and Greenblowfly - at least that's the way I see it.) Later, after having read GBF's response, I posted that link. Lastly, when Bruce reported he enjoyed the game he played with GBF at Hard Boyz, I followed up and highlighted those comments...

And I'm quite sure Greenblowfly will be happier when I shut the hell up about him! Like I said, no good deed goes unpunished; my attempts to give fair thrift to this man have done crap-all for him. So check out the man's own words, and I shall say no more.

But no press is bad press, and better infamy than anonymity!


A Daemon Idea from Tyler

Tyler said...

I base my daemon army around just 4 things- 4 Heralds of slaanesh on chariot with musk and might, max fiends, 6 units of 5 plaguebearers, and 36 flesh hounds with karanak. (credit to stelek for the idea) Its really fast, and puts out an absolutely obnoxious amount of high strength and initiative attacks. So much so that I am able to de-mech my opponent (land raider spam gives me trouble, but that just comes with playing daemons), and then rip the chewy stuff inside to bits. Just thought I'd throw the idea out there as something completley different from the fatecrusher lists, and still be one of the most competitive lists that the book can put out. Not to mention 4 heralds, 18 fiends, and 36 hounds look sick on the table...

Ever have a lightbulb go off in your head? I love this idea; it obviously works. More important, perhaps - it's got me excited about the army. Stelek is a great idea-man; fair play to Tyler for giving him credit for this idea, though he made the list so it's his now! I don't always agree with Stelek's ideas, but given that he has a better track record than I, plus I'm trying to learn critical thinking in army composition, I've learned to try and remain open and think through the ideas before comment. I'm going to do that with this idea, but on merit it looks awesome.

We have a guy like Stelek at our local store, Shannon... er, Evil Homer - sorry, forgot the internet is for nicknames. He's always researching and developing new list combos. I've found he doesn't he doesn't like it when I challenge his ideas. I tend toward balance while he loves the redundancy of multiple similar units. He accuses me of not listening. He's probably right, though I maintain optimization comes through synergy. Still and again, I'm the one who's trying to learn a new way here.


More later (they heard, despairingly).


My Limited Experience with Daemons

So I'm going to be building a Chaos Deamons army for the upcoming Tournament Season. It would be an understatement to say I'm not excited. In fact, I'm downright uninspired.

Here's a set of pictures from Galaxy Games 2009, the only the 2nd time I've played a Daemons list in an actual tournament. I lost this game, just like I'd lost the first. You think that would give me confidence.
Abaddon almost single-handedly beatdown a squad of Bloodcrushers, but they brought him down on the turn he rolled a 1.
The Bloodcrushers charged my Terminators. This was toward the end of the game, so I don't know how it would have ended, but I don't suspect well.

So what's my problem? At my FLGS, the Master Manipulator (every store needs one) managed to get literally everyone involved in our 'build an army' project. Everyone with a different codex, everyone building the hardest list they can. Given some of the nasty combos out available, I'm hard pressed to think of something worthy. At Hard Boyz, the Bloodcrusher lists were mostly at the bottom tables, with the exception of that dude from Dakkadakka.

Okay, so this has been a bit of a whine. I've got Evil Homer dreaming up nasty lists, so hopefully I'll fall onto something workable. I just have this feeling that the list I need isn't something that's been put together before - and isn't that bullshit arrogance, eh? To think that I'll come up with something original after the codex has been out for so long? I don't know, mate - I'll have to continue hammering away. The purpose of all this is to improve our game; I just have to follow it through.

Any ideas?



I've been studying my Daemons Codex recently, trying to find a build I'll be happy with at 2500 points. Can't say that's been easy, so let's take a break. I have a little local tournament coming up this month, 1500 points and 3 games. I'll be taking my Eldar, like I should have at Hard Boyz, so I thought I'd backtrack a bit and review Game 5 of Hard Boyz.

Joe Cherry! It's funny how things stick with you... I don't think I'll ever forget this dude's name. Joe Cherry! Heh. I dig saying it. I digress.

This was by far my most competitive game at BOLSON. It was my last chance to get to the top tables... come to think of it, it was his too. He had a tight list and knew how to use it. He also had Abbadon, who I have a ton of respect for. Given that we were fighting over objectives, we both had a solid firebase that our opponent was going to have to jump on. All that's fine, but what really made this a tough game was the fighting spirit we both displayed.

That's a nice way of saying we went after each other pretty hard.

I've said before that I tend to reflect the attitude of the person I'm playing. If my opponent is chill, I'll be laid back, whereas if my opponent is aggressive, I'll also be crawling across the table to throttle him back. That's really what happened here. From what I was told later, Joe Cherry is a successful business man, of the type you see in movies. Hard, tough - always going after the deal.

So we started slow, pushing a bit here, a bit there... then we started shoving, and soon we were rolling on the floor, biting and scratching. Not really, of course - that's sort of a metaphor for the game. It's probably not far off... by the time the game was over, we'd drawn quite a crowd of judges. I was later told they were staying close since they expected problems, given how aggressive both of us were, playing hard for the win. It just didn't happen that way. Once the game was over, Joe and I shook hands and talked about the game. We were totally cool; we understood where the game began and ended - for this reason, it was one of the more enjoyable games of the weekend.

It was a close game, and actually a draw, given that neither of us achieved the primary objective. But Joe achieved the second, Kill Points, by one point, so he earned a significant number of Battle Points more than I.

The set up. He parked his Defilers on his objective, screening them with the Land Raiders. I split my forces, with my static unit holding the objective and my fast vehicles on the left, ready to swing in for the fight. He won the first turn and immobilized both my Falcons. This was a blow, given they both had cover, but obviously it was easier to do before I was able to get to speed, or play Fortune on one or both.

This was around Turn 4. We spend the first 3rd of the game taking shots at each others vehicles. He finally sent his winged Daemon Prince forward and I jumped on him with Fire Dragons, shooting him down. I was aware he'd push forward with his Land Raider and send his Beserkers after a squad of Dragons, but I also knew he'd be able to only tie up one unit; I was counting on the other to blast them to atoms with fusion guns after. Note his terminators off in the corner. The reason my Wave Serpents are set up like this is I was covering my rear armor from the Deepstriking Terminators with melta guns, but he got too close and had to take a roll on the chart - thus I deployed them far enough away that they'd never get in the game. In hindsight, this was a mistake. I should have deployed them next to my Harlequins. He'd have killed maybe two in the shooting phase before I ate them for the Kill Points. That may have made a difference in the Secondary Objective.

Here's another view. He did destroy the yellow squad of Fire Dragons, then swept into as much cover as he could claim. I had a bit of bad luck in that I didn't destroy the Beserkers completely, as two remained; I tried to turn that to my advantage, charging them and gaining space and cover.

Here you see the Fire Dragons are taking cover behind the wall; the Land Raider on the left there is disabled somehow - I can't remember, I think the weapons are destroyed or something - while the one to the right has more Beserkers and Abaddon himself. I moved up the Avatar and the Harlequins to bait that unit out, counting on Fortune and my Invulnerable saves to see me through.

Here the Defiler is holding my Dragons in close combat. You can't see it, but the Avatar is behind the trees, having failed to move far enough to charge into that combat. On the right flank, Joe wisely ignored the Avatar and charged the Harlequins: Abaddon tossed little pieces of Eldar all over the battlefield. Thus when my turn came I sent Avatar left; there was no point trying to kill Abaddon when he was so well supported, especially as the game was coming to a close. The game ended here. There should have been another turn, but time was ticking away. I think another turn would have benefited me more than him, but that's not a sure thing at all.

I learned quite a bit from this game, not least of which is that there are others out there who enjoy a tough throw-down as much as I. Even though I fought hard for the win I was gracious in defeat. This earned me the judges' respect, though I didn't know it at the time, and later a Judges' Choice prize for sportsmanship (if you're curious, it was the Forge World Khorne Daemon Engine painted by Blue Table Painting that was pictured in the last post).

Take care - Brent


A 20 Minute Miniature (And Daemons Too!)

I've been talking quite a bit about tournament culture and some recent events, but I haven't touched too much on painting. This has been deliberate; I've been rather burned out lately and just haven't had the urge to paint. I've also been so busy with school and my internship at the local state hospital that I haven't had much free time. Even as I write this, I'm sitting in class typing away on my laptop. That's actually how I've done a number of my posts recently...

Viva la technologie!

Another reason: there are so many great painters posting so much great content that the last thing the web needs is me clogging it up with my slightly-better-than-average-but-who-knows painting style. To that end I've been posting on topics I feel are interesting but aren't done as much; I hope I've been successful.

That doesn't mean I won't share my experiments with you. Thus, the 20-minute minature!

Before that, here are two pictures of the 1000 point game I got to play on Wednesday. As my (very few!) readers will remember from last post, my FLGS started a new project, ably led by the Master Manipulator (every store needs one). The MM wrote up a list of viable armies, then knocked of Necrons - 'cause who wants 'em? - and we all rolled for an army to build. The idea is we build and play in increments (750, 1000, 1500, 2000) all the way up to 2500, then play in next years Hard Boyz to see how we do. I reported that I landed Chaos, but since my last post I allowed a trade to Bruce for the opportunity to roll again. I was actually okay with Chaos and interested in my MSU idea, but Bruce was a touch more interested so I went ahead with it.

Anyway, I rolled Daemons.

In a way, this is a tough break. It is well known that Daemons aren't a top tournament army at the moment, but forget all that - the idea of this project is to accept the challenge and make it work. More on this later, of course, but I threw together an army and played Jeff's Orks.

Jeff actually rolled Dark Eldar - and man am I excited to see what he does, since that's not an army we see around here - but his order hasn't arrived, so he played his Ork army. I won't really touch on the game; I won, but it was as complete a burgle as I've ever seen. Here, the Warboss and two squads attack my Daemon Prince of Khorne. Recognize this model JWolf, Darkwynn, and company? It's the model I won at BOLSCON, so I was excited about the opportunity to use it.

Here's my save against the Warboss' Power Klaw. I see it as a sign from the gods of Chaos that my army is destined for great things! 666 baby! (Er, sorry Father. Yes, yes, off to confession... Think the Catholic Church understands wargaming?)

So here is my 20-minute miniature. I grabbed a model from my bitz-box, a Marine from my now retired, and in pieces, Harbinger army. I used this army for years, but some old miniatures age better than others; Marine models didn't age well at all, so I had to start anew. No regrets.

I over brushed brown then dry brushed silver. I added details as quickly as I could - remember, I wanted to paint the entire thing in under 20 minutes. I was actually surprised that I had the time to do the shoulder pads, but there you go.

Here's another view.

So after taking the pictures I decided to try dipping the model. I've used dip in the past on my Beasts of Chaos army but never on 40K models. It didn't work out too well, as you can see.

So after all this - what did I learn? Don't use old dip. Even though I shook it it still didn't work well at all. Not the effect I was hoping for... still, I guess that means I'll have to paint up another one and try it over again.


Some Odds, Ends, and Mercer's Model

So, some odds and ends…

My little blog that could can now boast that it had its very own mini-flame war! It was soooo cute, like a newborn walking!

So as always, some pictures... This is a Brass Scorpion conversion from Lubbock TX. It's also pretty reliably the first one ever done, right after the Defiler kit came out. It made the rounds of the tournament scene and was copied pretty quickly. As always, the pictures don't do justice to a very cool model.
Another view.
Mark Mercer's model, which I love. I think I'm going to have to steal this idea...

Last post I took a moment to try and fairly represent the comments made here about good-old Green Blowfly. Basically, a few months ago he was referenced in regards to controversial tournament games, specifically the one he had with Adam Trike that got some traction on the blogs and forums a few months back. GBF ended up playing my buddy Bruce in the last game of Hard Boyz, so, given what had gone before, I took the opportunity to highlight the positive feedback Bruce gave when I quizzed him.

Got all that?

It gets even better and more fluffy-fun! Adam stopped by and, after an exchange or three, everybody seems to have moved on: going on to get along… my heart overfloweth!


Then Bruce said he considers it a possibility that Green Blowfly was medicated during the game.

*head hits desk*

No good deed goes unpunished! I guess I should have left well enough alone. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think it’s that large a deal: GBF doesn’t strike me as the type of dude that carries stuff like that around. The funny thing is, I actually get where Bruce was coming from.

Most of us, if we’ve done this for any length of time, have had a game or two that was less than sterling, where we acted the asshole or something. For me, my most recent gem was actually against Bruce. I got pissed because he didn’t want to play another round in a tournament game, so started bitching at him about it. He threw up his hands in disgust and we went ahead, but obviously the mood was pretty sour by then. So… was this the exact same issue I had in Round Two of Hard Boyz, against the guy who (may or may not, I go back and forth) have been slow-playing me? Well, yea… the irony isn’t lost on me, but how we got there was completely different. Bruce wasn’t trying to strategically use time to his advantage, but was legitimately concerned that time wouldn’t allow for his turn. Also, the game was close and the next round wouldn’t definitively seal the deal for either side, nor was I pushing hard throughout the game to get to that turn, so that sense of expectation wasn’t there in the same way. That said, playing the next round did end up netting me the win and ultimately 3rd place in the tournament, but it wasn’t worth the stress. I shook the sand out of my vag and apologized, splitting my price support with him.

Like Bruce said in the comments, he invited a dude outside over a game: as a general rule, it’s never a good idea to beat someone up over a game of man-dolls. Bruce was in the wrong; he manned up and is determined never to be that guy again.

The point is, get a group of guys together doing anything and you’re going to get bad behavior from time to time. Face it gents, we’re basically shitheads.

Hell, I don’t know how many people actually read the entirety of my rambling posts, but no worries; it’s basically a dead issue. Bruce’s comment is more understandable when you consider 1) he thought GBF had a cold and 2) I actually take potent medication for a nerve disease. Ill-advised: maybe; earthshaking: hardly.

So what about 40K?

At the FLGS the other night, a bunch of us were going back and forth about competitive lists, building armies, learning how to use them – that kind of thing. I talked a bit about my little exercise in critical thinking which generated some interesting observations I’ll share in the future. Point is, we had a cool-aid moment and all decided to create new tournament armies rolled at random.

The Master Manipulator (every store needs one) jotted down every army on a scratch sheet of paper, then crossed off Necrons, ‘cause nobody wants to get stuck with that. We all got to pick two armies we had or didn’t want to build again, and then we rolled a d20 to determine our fate.

I rolled Chaos. That’s fate for you – I’m going to have to put my money where my mouth is and build my Chaos MSU’s list.

So we have to build 750 by 12/1/09, 1000 by 1/1/10, and so on, incrementally building and playing games against each other, until we’ve reached 2500 and the next season of Hard Boyz.

Obviously I’m going to document all this, my effort and theirs.

For the record, I’m not going to build the army I posted here, largely because I built it as an improvement over my Hard Boyz 2009 list, using certain guidelines, but I’m certainly going to include some of what I consider are the best ideas. I’m itching to see how my ‘auto-cannon Havoc pillbox’ squad will do, for example. If it doesn’t work, we’ll find out long before I’m trying to make the shit work in Chicago!

Of course, I’m pretty much relying on feedback from gamers out there. JWolf indicated MSU was viable, but I needed more troops – he also said holding back was for pussies, so maybe I won’t go the dedicated gunline route. Adam told me to take a look at Kharne, so I’ll have a look. And so on, and so on, until hopefully I’ve got something worthy that I know how to play.

I’ve got some ideas for how to model and paint the army. I’ve been playing a ton of Fallout 3 lately, if that gives you a hint. Think Rogue Trader era and ad hock armor.

Take care - Brent


Building a List Less Suck (and a Blowfly Interlude)

So, regarding my Hard Boyz List-o-Suck...

The King said:
"I'm afraid I disagree with Chosen + Las Sniping being good, I cringed when I saw those squads."

The Green Blowfly said:
"While mech is the bomb all those rhinos give up a lot of very easy kill points. I think that at 2500 points you really don't want more than 3 rhinos. Five man squads of Marines in power armor also give up easy kill points."

and Bruce said:
"I have to agree, I'm not a big fan of 5 man squads unless your using combat tactics for a secure the objective mission."

So is the very foundation of the army I was trying to build flawed? Probably. It's hard to argue with King, who has proven insight into list-building, or with GBF, who has a ton of tournament experience. I'm also not discounting Bruce; though relatively new to the hobby, he tends to see things pretty clearly since he's not filtering it through literally 20 years of editions.

(I picked up my first pack of GW miniatures in Wales in 1990, when I was 14. They were Rogue Trader Era Orks - I still have the models in my collection, though I've repainted them numerous times over the years.)

These comments highlight my biggest weakness as a serious tournament player: I like to fiddle. I'm prone to making changes in my lists, often unnecessary. I like to play around with new concepts and ideas, though all too often I'm trying to reinvent the wheel. The 5-man squads in this army are an example, since it was the way to play Space Marines through 3rd and 4th edition and I'm curious enough to want to see if I can make it work again.

I also think its a good way to find unexpected success. See, I could download a netlist - something proven over time or currently hot - and I know I'd have success, given that I can actually play the game as well as anybody out there. Hell, I still may do that in the future; there's nothing wrong with it, but I tend toward a different strategy.

I like to play the edges, find something that's generally been discounted or a build that's not quite optimal but still effective. After all, the unexpected unit or rarely seen character can throw someone off their game. Everybody and their brother is prepared for Salamanders on the tournament scene, right?

So all that's bullshit justification, and I fully admit I may still be pissing in the wind. But I do have results to build on, having won numerous local and regional tournaments over the years and having gone undefeated in two large RTT's. If you're curious, I've found the most success with the 13th Co. and Orcs in 3rd and 4th edition and Eldar in 5th.

Bruce Emailed me the other day and pointed out something I'd missed. On September 18th, I posted in a comment that Green Blow Fly would be in attendance at Hard Boyz (among others) and that I was curious about him, since I'd heard he had a reputation for nonsense.

In the comments, the man himself asked, "Just curious as to what the nonsense you heard said and who said that."

I thought I'd address that real quick. In Round Two of Hard Boyz I had a bad experience in Game 3 with a guy who, deliberately or not - I'm not sure - slow-played me, almost costing me the win and the opportunity to move on. This lead to a rant and a few posts about bad tournament behavior, including a thread on the Wrecking Crew and the actions of some of its members. One of these dudes was GBF. I later read an explanation by GBF about the game in question that made a lot of sense, so given that when there are two sides the truth is usually somewhere in between, I copied that explanation and posted it here.

That still left me curious about Green Blow Fly, largely because I think he has one of the best nicknames on the Blogosphere - hell, I just like saying it! But then, I have a strange sense of humor. So when my buddy Bruce played the man himself I couldn't resist taking pictures, especially since he has a shirt with his name on it.

Humor aside, I'd like to be very clear: I quizzed Bruce hard about the game, searching for anything remotely like the things I'd read about online, but it didn't pan out. Bruce enjoyed the game and said he thought GBF was very cool. He said he was no quirkier than any other player, since we're a funny bunch playing with our man-dolls and all, and had zero real issues with the game apart from some minor rules questions, easily sorted out.


All that said, let's look at the changes I made to the template and see if it's not an improvement. Given the comments above, I'm not prepared to say this is a great army, but I'm at least hoping it's an obvious improvement over what I took to Hard Boyz.

2500 Pts - Chaos Marines Roster - Hard Boyz: Beyond the Suck

1 Abaddon the Despoiler @ 275 Pts

1 Typhus @ 225 Pts

3 Terminators @ 365 Pts

Chain Fist (x1); Power Fist (x1); Power Weapon (x1); Combi-melta (x3); Land Raider

1 Land Raider @ [235] Pts

Twin Linked Heavy Bolter; Twin Linked Lascannon Sponson (x2); Extra Armor; Searchlight; Smoke Launchers

5 Chosen @ 165 Pts (2 UNITS)

Bolt Pistol (x5); Bolter (x1); Close Combat Weapon (x5); Meltagun; Meltagun (x3); Frag Grenades; Krak Grenades; Infiltrate; Rhino

1 Rhino @ [35] Pts

Twin Linked Bolter; Searchlight; Smoke Launchers

6 Khorne Berzerkers @ 237 Pts

Bolt Pistol; Close Combat Weapon; Frag Grenades; Krak Grenades; Fearless; Furious Charge; Mark of Khorne; Rhino

1 Skull Champion @ [61] Pts

Bolt Pistol; Power Fist; Frag Grenades; Krak Grenades; Fearless; Furious Charge; Mark of Khorne

1 Rhino @ [50] Pts

Havoc Launcher; Twin Linked Bolter; Searchlight; Smoke Launchers

5 Noise Marines @ 190 Pts (3 UNITS)

Bolt Pistol; Close Combat Weapon; Blastmaster; Bolter (x4); Frag Grenades; Krak Grenades; Fearless; Mark of Slaanesh; Rhino

1 Rhino @ [50] Pts

Havoc Launcher; Twin Linked Bolter; Searchlight; Smoke Launchers

5 Havocs @ 165 Pts (3 UNITS)

Bolt Pistol; Close Combat Weapon; Bolter; Autocannon (x2); Frag Grenades; Krak Grenades; Rhino

1 Rhino @ [50] Pts

Havoc Launcher; Twin Linked Bolter; Searchlight; Smoke Launchers

Total Roster Cost: 2497

I tried to format it so it was easier to read. I also stuck with the themes I outlined for the army I took to Hard Boyz; that is, 2 tough close combat characters, Rhino spam, 5-man units, and popping shots from the hatch. Let's break it down.

  1. Mech: 1 Land Raider and 9 Rhinos
  2. Abaddon, Typhus, and the Berserkers hang out in the Land Raider.
  3. The Terminators drop and pop (hopefully).
  4. The Chosen prepare to stall Land Raiders as needed.
  5. The Noise Marines and the Havocs stay loaded in the Rhinos and use the 48-inch range to maintain maximum distance.
  6. The Rhinos, with the exception of the suicidal Chosen, have Havoc Launchers. Why not? We're hopefully standing still at the board edge to shoot from range.
  7. The Berserkers are given a Rhino as an extra option. Basically, if the Terminators don't need to Deep Strike they can join the characters in the Land Raider. Otherwise the Rhino is a spare.
  8. Weapons with 48 inches: Lascannons 2TL, Autocannons 6, Blastmasters 3, and Havoc Launchers 7.
So, I've tried to keep the units cheap and the options to a minimum. The very obvious downside is the huge number of possible Killpoints, but my feeling is, with this list, I'll let my opponent worry about how to collect it while I just concentrate on implementing my game. The units are designed to walk away from if they get caught out in close combat, with the exception of the Superfriends. Keep in mind, I'm also trying to make a strength of a weakness: yes, they're small units, easily killed by elite assault troops or massed fire, but they're still Space Marines. Against Guard, for example, I'd happily wade in to combat with a 10-strong unit.

Well, perhaps because that's a better place to live than in front of their guns. Maybe I should buy that army instead of fucking around with this one...

Take care - Brent

(A new favorite!) Anon: I haven’t even bothered playing a game of 6th yet, cause I have read the rules, and actually understand how they interact with units. I know my armies no longer function how they should, and so I need to change them.

Strictly Average: 'cause 6-inches is all you get.

Stalking Jawaballs since 2009.

Jawaballs: "My butt just tightened up."

Brent, preferred 2-to-1 over Not Brent in a recent, scientific poll.

Brent: emptied the Kool Aid and DRINKING YOUR MILKSHAKE with an extra-long straw.

Unicorns don't exist.

Home of the Stormbuster, the Dyson Pattern Storm Raven.

I'm a comment whore and this whore is getting no play.

Not Brent hurts Brent's feelings.

I think, therefore I blog.

"You should stop writing for everyone else and worry about your crappy blog." - Anon.

Not Brent has been spotted lurking around with a green marker.

He's not like a bad guy from a cartoon, all devious but never quite evil, Not Brent is bad beans, man, bad beans.

Dethtron: "Again I feel obliged to remind you that trying to sound smart only works if you are."

MVB: "I am not one to join the unwashed masses of self-titled 40k experts out there distributing advice from their blogs about exactly how your list should be built..."

Shiner Bock on tap: that's how I choose hotels.

Strictly Average: The Home of Hugs and Gropings.

Don't feed the trolls!

MoD: "Welcome to Brent's head."

Competitive is Consistent.

Dethtron: "...you could use that extra time to figure out a way to get your panties unbunched and perform a sandectomy on your vagina."

Dethtron: “When calling someone an idiot, it's generally best to avoid making grammatical mistakes.”

Warboss Stalin: "You know, if it actually WAS funny, maybe I wouldn't mind."

Mike Brandt: "It's not a successful bachelor party if you don't misplace someone".

"The Master Manipulator (every store needs one): "...now, enough stroking."

Kirby: "I don't know about gropings. Seriously, Brent, keep it in the pants, please."

Loquacious: "No matter how hard I tried, I couldn't get Hugs & Gropings or Stalks Jawaballs into Brent's little tribute."

Captain Kellen: "I rate this article a Brent on the Faith Hill to Nancy Pelosi scale!"

Drathmere: "Come for the balls, stay for the Brent? Kind of disturbing, man."

Go no further, lest thee see something thine eyes would fain look past!

Isabelle: "So, thank you for supporting your local and not so local unicorns. A noble gesture like that can show some scared kids out there that they don't have to hide from everyone and it's ok to be who they really are."

There is nothing more interesting than We The People... in all our beautiful, ugly glory!

On Internet Advice: You see, I have an almost religious belief that's it's a huge, colossal waste of time.

...I think I'll call it the Gun Shy Pattern Stormbuster, because after the Internet destroyed my first humble effort, I find I'm a bit worried about the reaction to this one.

Lauby: "Is it left over from that time you thought that you could just complete step one 12 times to meet the mandates of that court order?"

Not Brent: "I guess we'll have to read on and find out. Signed, Not Brent. Especially today."

Cynthia Davis: "I think the scrolling text is from Glen Beck's new book."

Grimaldi: "Spamming certain units creates interesting possibilities but also fatal weaknesses."

Purgatus: "Math can inform decisions. It cannot make decisions."

Thoughts? Comments? Hugs and gropings?

You'd be that much quicker to figure out what I mean when I refer to a Unicorn if I covered it in a rainbow flag.

SinSynn: (To Brent) "Curse you and your insidious influence on the internets..."

Dave G (N++): "You know you're an internet celebrity when your following is more akin to tabloids."

I prefer the term Internet Personality (or IP) myself, seeing as how I coined it.

Lauby: "Your attempt to humanize him as failed. I feel nothing but scorn for his beard - it's like a warcrime or something."

BBF: "I've always thought you are a good player but I finally figured out that you are a great player. It's hard to see sometimes because your personality is engaging, sincere and quite charming - to me that is kind of a rare combination."

'Clearly cheating?' I didn't misspeak: you jumped to conclusions. If you'd like to apologize I'll be happy to send you an autographed picture of my ass.


I thought I was doing alright before I realized I was losing.

Age and treachery beats youth and vigor every time.

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