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I am a free man!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This was my second trip to CotN for the RTT and it was once again fantastic. Easily the best-terrained tables anywhere and this year the armies were, as whole, very well painted. (Always a few turkeys, of course.) I overheard people who run the tournament say that the armies on display were superior to what they saw at the GW GTs.

Speaking of which, the army distribution was very similar to last year, with a heavy emphasis on Space Marines and a focus on infantry. Remove the IG and my Tau, and there might have been 20 vehicles split among the remaining 20 armies.

Out of 28 players...

* 10 Space Marines (including 3-4 Space Wolves)
* 4 IG
* 4 Orks
* 2 Chaos Marines
* 2 Necrons
* 2 Eldar
* 1 Witch Hunters
* 1 Daemons
* 1 Tyranids (new codex)
* 1 Tau (me)

While my paint score this year was higher for my Tau than for my Grey Knights, my game performance wasn't as good (1-0-2 compared to 3-0 last year). Nevertheless, with a commanding win (almost tabling my opponent), no losses, and a bunch of secondary battle points even on my draws -- and combined with my better paint score and maximized sportsmanship -- I still managed 4th place overall.

Not too shabby. :)

Here is the list I took.

HQ
[87 pts] Shas'el, plasma rifle, missile pod, multi-tracker

Elite
[186 pts] 3 XV8 Crisis, plasma rifle, missile pod, multi-tracker
[186 pts] 3 XV8 Crisis, plasma rifle, missile pod, multi-tracker
[141 pts] 3 XV8 Crisis, twin-linked missile pod, flamer

Troop
[185 pts] 6 Fire Warriors; Devilfish, smart missile system, multi-tracker, flechette discharger, disruption pods
[60 pts] 6 Fire Warriors
[100 pts] 10 Kroot, 5 Hounds

Fast Attack
[209 pts] 7 Pathfinders; Devilfish, smart missile system, multi-tracker, flechette discharger, disruption pods
[85 pts] Piranha, fusion blaster, targeting array, flechette discharger, disruption pods
[85 pts] Piranha, fusion blaster, targeting array, flechette discharger, disruption pods

Heavy Support
[195 pts] 2 XV88 Broadsides, advanced stabilization system, team leader, hard-wired drone controller, 2 shield drones
[165 pts] Hammerhead, railgun, burst cannons, flechette discharger, disruption pods
[165 pts] Hammerhead, railgun, burst cannons, flechette discharger, disruption pods

Total: 1849 pts

If you've read my Tau tactica (linked in my sig), then you can immediately see that this isn't what I would consider an optimal, top-competitive Tau list. Sadly, I don't have a 2nd Kroot unit painted up and didn't have time to do so before the tournament. (What's fine for local league play won't cut it at a tournament held in another state! :rotfl: ) That fact and the limit of 1850 pts rather than 2000 pts led me to take a 2nd FW unit instead of a 2nd Kroot unit. That required a 2nd Devilfish, and that added expense of points meant downgrading one unit of fireknives to a unit of deathrains instead. Still a "strong" list in my opinion, but not optimized for tournament play IMHO. Still, I was happy with how it performed in play.

Speaking of which, brief batreps incoming...

Warm-up Game 1: Space Marines

We arrived early enough on Saturday to get as much gaming in as we could ask. The Space Marines player I warmed up against last year was there again and the minute I walked in he asked if I wanted a rematch. This year, instead of fielding a land raider-centric army he opted for 100% infantry. His list was, approximately:

Pedro Kantor
4 tacticals w/lascannon, melta gun; 1 tac in a drop pod
5 scouts w/missile launcher
5 sternguard with combi-flamers in a drop pod
3 thunderfire cannons

We rolled up Sieze Ground (3 objectives)/Dawn of War with me winning the role for 1st turn and opting to deploy and go first, though he successfully siezed the initiative.

This was a game I should have dominated from start to finish. Except that I had some of the worst dice rolling I have ever seen. Over the course of the game, I only managed to kill 1 tac squad and their drop pod, the sternguard, and nine marines from a 2nd tac.

And that was it!

As an example, on turn 2 I hit a tac squad sitting in the open with markerlights, and a unit of crisis suits in rapid fire range all got BS 5 as a result. Nevertheless, I missed 5/6 plasma shots and 2/6 missile shots, followed by just three missile wounds, all of which he saved.

My hammerheads never hit the entire game. Didn't even get a chance to roll dice for wounds even once.

So pretty much the only reason I was able to compete in the game was because his army just couldn't hurt mine. His thunderfires slaughtered all my Kroot of course, but otherwise were useless. And all he had left to hurt me were melta guns -- which I didn't let get close -- and lascannons. And lascannons aren't very handy anti-armour weapons ... though I tried as hard as I could to help him along as I missed 8/9 disruption pod saves against him. Fortunately he mostly scored glances, only managing to destroy one hammerhead on his last turn of the game and my two piranhas.

He dropped one pod on my near objective, but that was the one tac and pod I actually destroyed (and was ultimately the objective I claimed). He dropped sterngaurd right behind a concentration of my crisis suits, but flamers just aren't too handy against them, so I was able to turn around and wipe them out without any difficulty. Otherwise, he was a static gunline that did nothing else other than take shots at my crisis suits and vehicles with lascannons and thunderfires.

Nevertheless, because I couldn't hit or wound anything to save my life, I was left scrambling on the final turn to secure a draw by timing a last-minute possession of one objective and a contest of a 2nd. His scouts and a tac were well in possession of the third objective.

Result: a very disappointing Draw.


Warm-up Game 2: Witch Hunters

One of my local friends that made the trip with me wanted a game against me as he had never faced Tau and had only just finished his first ever game with his army while I was struggling against the Marines. His army fit right in, being almost entirely footslogging.

Canoness w/Celestian retinue
Palatine
Inquisitor with a mixed retinue
Sisters Repentia
3x 12 Sisters with a mix of flamers, heavy flamers, and meltas
5 Seraphim
Retributors with heavy bolters
Immolator

We rolled up Annihilation/Spearhead and he won the roll for 1st turn and opted to deploy and go first.

Unlike my previous warm-up game, this game went exactly as I had planned. With only average dice, I had destroyed all but two units by the end of turn 3 and he called it. Meanwhile had I lost only a few Kroot and had an immobilized piranha. There was just no way for him to get close to me. I was faster and more mobile and every weapon I had save the Kroot rifles outranged him.

Result: Win.


Tournament Game 1: Imperial Guard

The organizers keep records from year to year and generally match up opponents for the first round based on last-year's perfomances, mixing in new players at random. As a result, I was matched up against the guy who barely edged me out for the victory last year. And ironically, we were placed on the same table and given the same mission to play: Capture and Control/Pitched Battle. He actually remembered how I had deployed my GK army from a year ago. :rotfl:

I'm sure I'm missing and/or screwing up a couple things, but his army was approximately:

Command Squad in Chimera
GK Grand Master (a gorgeously painted Inquisitor Rex model)
Platoon command with autocannon
2 Infantry Squads
Vets in Chimera
Ogryns (GK GM joined up) in Chimera
Hellhound
Banewolf
Medusa
Leman Russ Punisher with Pask
Leman Russ squadron: 1x executioner?, 1x ??

This game played out similar to last year's as well. I pushed toward his centrally-placed objective with a sacrificial unit (Kroot this year) in order to draw out his Troop units (where I could kill them) while taking out his mobility (chimeras) and heavy weaponry (all the other tanks). The plan, of course was to possess my objective and contest his.

And actually the game played out pretty much exactly as I wanted it to. I had to work harder to kill his tanks than I should have (the deathrain crisis suits didn't do damage to anything the entire game and were finally put out of their misery by the medusa; it took me three turns to do better than a 2 on damage table to the hellhound), but tactically my objective was never threatened and I was on the offensive the entire game, keeping him bottled up inside his deployment zone for the entirety.

At the end of the game, I had a devilfish with embarked fire warriors contesting his objective and was poised for a 1-0 win. His only chance to get a draw was to destroy the devilfish AND the fire warriors. And he had only a single weapon left that was capable of hurting the devilfish: a hull lascannon on one of the russes. He rolled a 5 to hit and a 6 to explode it, I failed my disruption pod save, 3 of the fire warriors died in the explosion, and then he lasgunned the rest of them down. Quite an exciting finish! We both had a good laugh about it.

Great game, great opponent, and still the most impressively painted army I have ever seen. It is Golden-Daemon-jaw-droppingly-amazing.

Result: Draw


Tournament Game 2: Chaos Space Marines

This was my other friend's first round opponent (three of us made the trip), a big guy with a 100% Tzeentch-themed force.

2 winged daemon princes
Thousand Sons
2x Chaos Marines units (mark of Tzeentch)
Raptors
Defiler
Vindicator
2 Obliterators

The mission was Sieze Ground (3 objectives)/Dawn of War. He won the roll for 1st turn and opted to take it, being able to deploy Troops on two of the objectives (both near the half-line of the table) and get one of his princes right on the half-line as well. I opted to stay entirely off the table and walk it on during my 1st turn so that I could see how he deployed everything else and react occordingly. I didn't see any reason to use anything as "bait" to attract the attention of the daemon prince, and I certainly didn't want that thing anywhere near me for any reason at all.

I swear Dawn of War was designed specifically to bone Tau, who are doomed if trapped on their own table edge OR if they lose too much shooting. Dawn of War does both at the same time, compressing the game down to about 3-4 turns total for me if I actually want to win.

Fortunately, I was able to deploy in a corner far from where he happened to deploy his daemon princes, giving me a couple of turns to focus on other things. I removed the defiler's battle cannon and the vindicator on my 2nd turn, and then the daemon princes on the 3rd and 4th turns, though I had to feed those princes both the Kroot and my broadsides so they wouldn't actually destroy anything I valued more for this game.

On turn five I had left him only an immobilized and weaponless defiler, a unit of chaos marines on the "far" objective, and some thousand sons on the "middle" objective. Much amusement in-between that and the start of the game when he kept assaulting my piranhas and a turretless hammerhead to remove them, and flechettes would kill two models each time he tried it. :rotfl:

On my half of turn 5, I took possession of the "near" objective and contested the other two with the turretless hammerhead and a piranha, securing a 1-0 victory. We rolled a 6th turn, which then gave me the chance to wipe out the thousand sons and claim that objective as well, and then doubly contest the "far" objective with that turretless hammerhead teaming up with the piranha. 2-0 to the Tau. Had there been time for a 7th turn, I would have tabled him.

A very good-natured opponent with a themed Chaos army you just never see. It's always Khorne and/or Nurgle, so this was a nice change.

Result: Win


Tournament Game 3: Eldar

What worried me about this game wasn't the army, it was the terrain. It was a terrific theme, resembling a partially destroyed airport/airstrip with some area terrain for infantry cover saves (mostly very small craters), but there was almost no sight-blocking terrain. I hate depending upon my vehicles to restrict line of sight and provide cover for my crisis suits ... and that would turn out to be a major factor in the outcome of this game.

My opponent's army was approximately:

Avatar
Farseer
Striking Scorpions
Fire Dragons in Wave Serpent (w/ twin-linked brightlance)
Howling Banshees
2x Pathfinders
2 (or 3?) x Dire Avengers
Wraithlord with brightlance
2 Fire Prisms

The game was Sieze Ground (5 objectives)/Spearhead. After objectives were placed but before deployment zones/turn order was determined each player had to secretly choose an objective to count double for them if they claimed it. Secrets revealed at the end of the game!

He won the roll for 1st turn and opted to take it. He deployed in the corner that left me with the corner that had absolutely none of the limited sight-blocking terrain. Each unit of his pathfinders were on an objective, one of them the one I had picked as my own "secret" one. I failed to sieze the initiative and suffered a ridiculously effective 1st turn of enemy shooting as a result.

* His wraithlord got past the disruption pods on a hammerhead and exploded it, killing a crisis suit hiding behind it.

* That crisis unit failed their morale check and jumped off the table! :(

* His wave serpent killed another crisis suit in a different unit.

* His fire prisms killed all the pathfinders they hit, they failed their morale check and ran off the table.

With my firepower cut in half, I knew I was in for a rough game. The only thing that went my way on the first turn was the fact that my deathrains successfully immobilized the wave serpent, forcing the fire dragons to hoof it through extensive difficult terrain. But other than that it was disastrous. My railguns suffered the curse of the 1. Either they would fail to hit (despite twin-linking on the broadsides) OR they would fail to wound. Which meant that I had to continually back up in the face of the advancing avatar and wraithlord who spearheaded his aggressive assault across the middle of the table to my force.

I only finally managed to kill the avatar on my turn 3, and the wraithlord on turn 4. I also managed to kill his banshees somewhere in there just before they could get into assault with battlesuits. And other than scattered wounds on dire avenger units sitting on objectives, those were the only three units I destroyed the entire game! :( The MCs sucked up my limited firepower and gave most of his infantry free reign. About the only real success I had was using a piranha to harrass one of the fire prisms for three turns, and that piranha sucked up all of his pathfinder shooting as he tried to destroy it but didn't want to use his fire prisms to do it. (I always had the piranha within an inch or two of the vehicle and he didn't want to risk a scatter.)

If this had been a kill points or victory points mission, I would have been totally destroyed. His first turn combined with my piss-poor shooting in the next two turns made the game entirely one-sided. Fortunately, this was an objectives mission, but with 5 on the table I didn't see how I could possibly win it, and even getting a draw was going to be tough.

At the top of the final turn, he finally kicked my stubborn Kroot off an objective, his scorpions ran my broadsides off the table, then consolidated within range of the objective just given up by the Kroot. He possessed four of the objectives (2 from pathfinders, 2 from dire avengers) and contested that one. All I had left were two devilfish with fire warriors, a hammerhead, my commander and an attached fireknive, two deathrains, and drones that survived the destruction of the harassment piranha and were hiding out of sight of the rest of his army.

But I had carefully positioned those few units to make a final push and hope for a draw. It meant that my broadsides and Kroot were exposed and had to die, but it was all for the Greater Good in the end. One devilfish tank-shocked the scorpions off their objective and claimed it. The other devilfish cruised over to an avenger-held objective and dropped fire warriors out within 2" of the objective. They opened fire but the avengers passed their morale check and so that objective was contested. My hammerhead cruised over to the other avenger-held objective and shocked in far enough to contest. And my drones jumped out of hiding to get within 2" of one of the pathfinder-held objectives and contested that one.

1 objective for the Tau, 1 objective for the Eldar, both of our "secret" objectives were contested.

Result: Draw!

I was definitely proudest of this game, as I was certain I was going to lose -- if not be tabled outright -- by the end of my 2nd turn. Once again my opponent was a real champ and we had a ton of fun playing it. Making pathetic "pew-pew" noises as you're getting shot off the table is always good for a laugh. :)
 

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Sir Proofreader
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Nice reports there, number 6! Fourth seems a pretty good result, and good work on the painting and sportsmanship scores as well!

Out of interest, what were the armies that placed above you?
 

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Hive Fleet Pandora
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Wow....what's with all the footsloggin lists? What are people smoking up there....jk ;) Congrats on a job well done, especially coming back from behind against the Eldar player. You're the second person I know (sorta) that used Tau in a tournament recently and did well. The other guy placed 5th out of 72 players. Too bad I beat his tau a$$ with my space puppies....twice (well, once was with my Ravenguards). :rotfl: Too bad that if not for your rolls, you would've dropped some of these armies like the plague.


Also, got any pics of your nicely painted army?
 

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One Awesome Dude
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Nice report. I too was surprised at all the foot-slogging armies out there, especially in this day and age (of 5th Edition Armored Doom).
 

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I am a free man!
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Nice reports there, number 6! Fourth seems a pretty good result, and good work on the painting and sportsmanship scores as well!

Out of interest, what were the armies that placed above you?
I remember that the other Eldar player -- not the one I played -- finished 1st but I don't recall who placed 2nd and 3rd. They should post the final tallies online within a week or two and I could report that here when it happens.
jy2 said:
Wow....what's with all the footsloggin lists? What are people smoking up there
Heh. I had the same thought! :rotfl:

And yeah, my dice really let me down over the weekend. Especially in the Eldar game (and the Marine warm-up). But even against the heavily armoured and mobile IG army where I wasn't getting any results from my deathrains and couldn't damage tanks reliably with anything else, I was still in command the entire time just because I had so much firepower in general. I mean, it all came down to three lucky dice rolls by my opponent to turn my victory into a draw for him -- in a mission that is designed to produce more draws than wins or losses -- so I can't really complain.

What I hope my results show is that even terribad dice can be somewhat mitigated with a good list that is played smart for the objectives. :)
jy2 said:
Also, got any pics of your nicely painted army?
Only a few bad ones. The Con organizers took several pics of my army, however, and they'll be posting them up within a couple of weeks, too. I'll link to 'em here as well.

For now, here are samples of what I've got in the army.





MorbidlyObeseMonkey said:
Where was this tourney? If it's close enough you'll be seeing me next year.
It's in St Paul, MN. The website is Con of the North.
 

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Senior Member
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those are some excellent models 6. Really very well done.

Dave
 

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Stirling
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Nice job #6. I am kind of surprised with the lack of nids. However, it could be lack of painted armies. I know many nid players are struggling with making Tervigons and Mycetic Spores and some other things.

I will be attending Genghis Con RTT in Denver this weekend. Bringing my Tau of course. Have a list but not with me. I need to get my kroot finished and my torch squad .... I have a little more then 24 hours to do it (
 

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I am a free man!
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Good luck, haddatt! :) Let us know how it goes for you.
 

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I am a free man!
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
So the top 5 finishers were:

1. Eldar
2. Space Wolves
3. Necrons
4. Tau (me)
5. Eldar

Pics still not posted....
 

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durus
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3. Necrons
4. Tau (me)
Surprising at #3, 'Crons are seeming to have a real tough time in 5th. Not surpised at your fine placing of course.......:handshake:

At our GT I just went to, we had a couple of Tau lists that didn't fair as well, it takes very good general to place top 5 in tourneys with Tau IMO right now, so congratulations on an excellent job! An Eldar player was able to get #1 overall, but a grumpy old Canadian IG player was best General....
 

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I am a free man!
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks, Diggums! Good to hear from you again. :)

Well, IMHO, Tau are actually one of the top-tier armies. If skillfully played with builds similar to mine, they can be very competitive indeed.

And even against the lists at CotN this past weekend, I too found it hard to believe that one of the Necrons players did so well. But since I didn't see any of his games -- nor have ever played against him -- hard to say how it happened. May be he's just a fantastic player and can make them work!

Well done with your IG, by the way! :)
 

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Sir Proofreader
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I guess Space Wolves is no surprise, but I too didn't expect Necrons to be up there! As you said though, number6, a bit hard to know how he did it if you didn't see any of his games or play him.

It's good that they're up there, though - makes things interesting! No one wants to see marines win everything (sweeping generalisation there I know!)
 

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One Awesome Dude
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I guess Space Wolves is no surprise, but I too didn't expect Necrons to be up there! As you said though, number6, a bit hard to know how he did it if you didn't see any of his games or play him.

It's good that they're up there, though - makes things interesting! No one wants to see marines win everything (sweeping generalisation there I know!)
I'm with you there. People put a lot of stress on underpowered armies and the like. And of course, it always feels bad when you see new codices released that have some clear advantages, but in truth a good general (/bad opponent), luck, etc. can all make things not so bad for you if you're an older army player. It's nice to see some 'lower tier' armies rank up there. I know it could just mean he crushed a few thirteen year old Ultramarine players (my apologies for the offense if you're one of those fellows) but still.
 

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sounds like you had some fun, hey im a 13 year old player, but i play new nids's, surprised that the nids werent up there in the top 5, everygame ive played with them has been super competitive
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
sounds like you had some fun, hey im a 13 year old player, but i play new nids's, surprised that the nids werent up there in the top 5, everygame ive played with them has been super competitive
There's more to playing 40K well than having a shiny new codex, young Padawan.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Here are those promised pics of my army from the Con.







My ass getting kicked in Game 3 vs Eldar:
 

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Sir Proofreader
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Odd. I think it's the lighting making the photos look grainy, but you seem to have painted your Tau with a nice clean look and managed to have them come out looking dirty!

Maybe you've been using washes? Regardless, they look pretty good. Very nice highlights!
 
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