It all started with an early ring of an alarm clock and going out of home when pretty much at dawn. Then a rendezvous in the Katowice centre with the rest of our crew (Przemo (SM), Skinek (BA), Grom (Orks), Mailo (IG) and Jarlaxe (Chaos)) including the folks from Cracow(Oświęcim to be precise) - Inkq, who was meant to be tha main judge of the event and his brother (who played BAs). Two hours and a half hour of sleepy travel we arrived in Łódź, where the event took place.
Two days. 5 battles. 1250 points format. 50 players from all over Poland. Entire evening of the first day spent at the grill. Bucketloads of fun. That's basically the summary of the tournament. But I know you probably want to read more than that!
Let's start with the basics. The tournament had a 1250 point limit and an additional restriction - taking the same codex choice in any other slot than Troops was forbidden. Considering it was (theoretically, as, as always, practice showed some slight deviation) supposed to be a "for fun" tournament that really hampered my choices. In the end I decided on a more competetive list, which actually did me a lot of good. Here it is:
|HQ:||Company Command Squad - Std, 3xMelta, Officer of the Fleet||125|
|Chimera - ML, HF||55|
|Troops:||Veteran Squad - 3xplasma||115|
|Chimera - ML, HF||55|
|Troops:||Veteran Squad - 3xmelta||100|
|Chimera - ML, HF||55|
|Troops:||Platoon Command Squad - 3xFlamer||45|
|Infantry Squad - GL, AC||65|
|Infantry Squad - GL, AC||65|
|Hvy Sup:||Leman Russ Battle Tank||150|
And now for the "meat" of this report!
Battle 1 - Kruker and Dark Eldar
Primary Goal: Capture the most out of 5 Coal Piles
Secondary Goal: Deny the opponent the control of two Coal Piles near his table edge
Deployment: Dawn of War
When I saw my opponent pull Raiders out of his bags I suddenly started to wonder how do I deal with a sea of Dark Lances. Luckily it turned out he didn't have that much of them, however still had a lot of troops, which could prove dangerous in such a scenario. He also had a beefed up jetbike Archon, a single squad of Wyches in a Raider and Haemonculi in half the Troops squads.
That's the deployment:
And that's my first turn:
He pushed forward and managed to repel me from my left objective, but with decisive movement and effective shooting I managed to pop most Raiders by the end of the game. Including getting rid of Wyches before they got too close.
With Vendetta bringing support of 3 flamers inside I was able to get rid of the Dark Eldar holding my opponent's points earning my 2 large points for the Secondary Goal, however the poor command squad got shot to death by the remaining Eldar.
By the end the heavy guns of the 42nd Cadian managed to put down most of the foul piratical Xenos. At the end, there was one or two Raiders left, hiding away behind hills. It did not come that lightly though. The Archon rushed off forward in the heat of the battle and managed to withstand a turn of entire army's shooting with his horrible 2+ Inv Save. He hacked up the second infantry squad, getting me down to two scoring units. Luckily, he managed to fail a save on an instant death shot, ending his reign.
All in all it ended as a decisive victory for the 42nd. I forgot to put a scoring onto one of the objectives at my edge, so I netted my opponent additional 2 points as well, but that did not matter.
Result: 21 : 4-ish (I actually forgot most of my opponents' scores. Oops!)
Battle 2 - Kheed and Blood Angels
Primary Goal: Sieze control of as many Sausages as you can. Units pick them up by ending their move in base to base contact. You control Sausages that are broguht to your deployment zone.
Secondary Goal: Deny the opponent having any Sausages in his deployment zone.
Deployment: Pitched Battle
The victory in my previous battle landed me on one of the top tables. I felt, and was right, that I'll end up against a far more demanding opponent now.
It turned out to be Blood Angels. He fielded a large-ish DC unit in a Rhino, a small Assault Squad in a Razorback and a 10-man AS on jump packs. Add a single Sanguinary Priest, a Librarian, a Lascannon Predator and a Furioso Dreadnaught to that and you get quite a low model count, but it turned out to be really deadly.
Started out quite bad, by losing the Vendetta on turn 1. I decided to start with it on the table, instead of outflanking as I always do and it seems I got reminded why do I do that. It was also my first battle against the new BAs and I forgot quite a few quirks they have (How on earth could I forget transports are fast!) Besides, the scenario was much better suited to my opponent. Only after battle I learned I could grab the marker and hop back into a Chimera with it. Perhaps if I knew, I would be able to bring at least one home, meaning a draw.
Oh well! Needles to say, Blood Angels advanced and managed to catch my Leman Russ which I foolishly put too much forward, as you can see below.
Perhaps if I got one more turn of it alive, the battle would look totally different. As it looked now, at the end I was left with a single Infatry Squad in a corner of the table shooting ineffectively to the remnants of the DC. However my opponent lost quite a few models as well and it ended with only 344 VPs difference. Guardsmen managed to hurt advancing Marines quite a bit!
A cold shower after a decisive victory.
Result: 5 : 20-something
Battle 3 - Lesiu and Space Marines
Primary Goal: Control the most Great Places for a Grill out of 2 - in the middle of both players' quarters.
Secondary Goal: Dishonor your enemy, by having your HQ piss into their grill - an HQ model must be in base to base contact with the Great Place in your opponent's quarter at least for a moment
Classic Marines this time round, an objective mission... Not bad! My enemy fielded two Tactical Squads, two Scout squads, a Predator, a Vindicator, a Whirlwind and a Chapter Master on a bike with fancy gubbins.
He started with reserving nearly everything... No, wait, he started with saying he has to go get a drink. Okay!
The battle raged, we shot each other, trying to put dents into the opponent's force, without overwhelming success. Aside from the beginning. I totally forgot about his outflanking Scouts. That cost me the Manticore at the very beginning of the game, which meant it didn't go smooth at all.
His shooting managed to immobilise my Leman Russ as well. Which then was used by my opponent quite well..
In the end, my Chimeras managed to reach the opponent's objective and even though it was blown up with most of the command squad killed, the Lord Marshal managed to reach the marker just in time to... er... Dishonor the Enemy *cough*.
On the other side of the table the Chapter master rushed forward and hit an Infantry squad near the marker, who unluckily (so I thought) managed to hold their ground. Somehow for the next 2 turns he did not manage to hit them at all! That didn't do much good for the poor infantrymen though and they were finally cut down. The Chapter Master then... fulfilled the secondary objective and rushed into another squad... Melta veterans were rushing to their aid but..
The Chapter master swinged his Relic Blade and killed a single guardsmen.
In return the guardsmen scored a few hits and managed to get 3 6s on To-Wound rolls!
But hey, he's got 3+ save, what can happen eh!
Ooops. One less Chapter master to contend with.
After both laughing for 10 minutes straight we continued the game shooting a bit here and there, but I just didn't have the firepower to push him out of the objective and neither could he push me, so it ended with a draw, slightly in my opponent's favor.
A really fun game, also thanks to my opponent's unorthodox behaviour!
Result: 11 : 13
After this battle we proceeded to enjoy grilled sausages and beverages all night long. It was this, that marks this tournament as one of the best and certainly one of the most enjoyable in the entire polish tournament scene! I managed to meet a couple of people that I only knew by forum nicknames and generally spent good time with our crew.
Battle 4 - Reyki and Space Marines
Primary Goal: Poison your enemy by bringing more Homemade Biologists to his deployment zone than he does into yours. Each player has 3 Biologists models with the following profile: WS3 BS3 S3 T3 I3 W2 A1 LD7 InvSv4+ armed with CCWs and being Independent Characters
Secondary Goal: Poison enemy's sasuages! To do that, bring a Biologist to one of two of your enemy's Grill markers (placed anywhere by the controlling player).
Deployment: Up to 18" from your board edge, over 24" from the enemy.
The battle I forgot to take pictures in. It was the first battle on the second day.. and let's just say I didn't feel that well, though it was mostly caused by me being silly enough and not taking anything I could put under my head while sleeping, which ended up in neck and head ache for half the morning.
Stil, my opponent fielded, a Tactical, a Scout squad with Sniper Rifles, a Devastator Squad with 3 MLs and an LC, a Predator, a Gate Librarian with 5 (..or was it more) TH/SS Termies and a 5 man strong Sternguard squad with lots of Combi-Meltas and a Heavy Flamer. A very annoying thing to deal with as Guard.
And then we shot each other and his Terminators pushed forward and there was much dying. I foolishly ignored one of his wounded Biologists at my deployment zone, to shoot terminators, because I though I'll manage to hack them up. Well I didn't and my opponent ended up with 2 biologists deep in my deployment zone, hidden within a unit of TH/SS terminators.
However on the other side of the table things went a little better.I regained my momentum after dealing with half the Tactical which advanced against my Manticore, killing their biologist. I also suicude dropped one off the outflanking Vendetta who ran straight onto the objective, to at least get the Secondary objective done. A Hellhound tank shocked half the devastator squad and the scout squad as well. Devastators failed their DoG attack meaning I had one less Missile to worry about and Scouts didn't withstand the pressure withdrawing a few inches back.
And then it all started. I shot my enemy and he just did not manage to pass a single save. Everything dropped down dead as though all the guardsmen had plasma guns. The suicude biologist managed to survive somehow, so did another one, who made a mad dash to my opponent's deployment zone.
The terminators dropped dead from Vendetta's fire, but the Librarian managed to hide the remaining 2 biologists in there, making the running one crucial to victory. So I gave him a Move! Move! Move! order.. and rolled 1,1 and 2 for the run distances. I cursed under my nose, as the game ended then.
And then my opponent cursed as the biologist was just inside his deployment zone, scoring me a major victory! All in all however, if my opponent rolled a little better I would be in much deeper trouble! At one point I actually felt stupid for shooting him!
Result: 20 : 5
Battle 5 - Raca and Space Lions(Wolves)
Primary Goal: Annihliation!
Secondary Goal: Control more table quarters than your opponent.
Deployment: Triangles. Players deploy up to 6" away from a diagonal of the table and over 24" away from the opponent.
And so it turned out I am 7th in general ranking. Whoooa. I certainly didn't expect that. But somehow I knew, that now I will go up against some real badass army that will kick my butt thoroughly.
And I was right.
It was my first battle against Space Wolves, so far I only played on the other side of the fist. And somehow that didn't teach me to play bloody defensively, especially in a Kill Point mission! My opponent fielded a Wolf Lord on a TWC with standard gubbins (though no Bear Tale), 2 5-man squads of Grey Hunters in Rhinos (only one with MotW, both with Melta/Combi-Melta), a 5-man GH squad with a Cyclone Wolf Guard, a unit of Long Fangs (small one - only 3 MLs), a Predator, a Vindicator... and the Bane of the Guard - 5 Wolf Scouts with a meltagun.
I had to employ an anti-scout deployment, as the table wasn't so great for me:
It started out "well" when I blew up both the Predator and the Vindicator and forcing the Long Fangs to flee, but it went downhill from there. I was just too close and the Lord was just too fast. I got chewed up reeeal bad and actually when the Scouts came, they weren't needed at all.
By turn.. er, 4 I believe, there was nothing left for me. This certainly taught me a valuable lesson about playing both with and against Wolves... or at least their ruleset. I didn't really like the Space Lions idea (I mean, aren't Dark Angels Wolves greatest rivals!), but the execution and painting of the miniatures was really good (I especially liked the idea of using a model of some Lion thing... possibly a Fantasy Chimera as the MotW model).
Result: 0 : 25. Ouch!
That loss pushed me away to 21st place out of 50 people. Still not bad, especially considering I don't do tournmanets a whole lot! A couple more of that, more practice and who know, maybe I could actually end up somewhere...
Other shots I did include neighbouring tables in some battles:
And Skinek's Blood Angels!
There are also more shots from the event available here: http://picasaweb.google.pl/plooschack/GnC2l10# Wonder if you can spy me there!
In the end, I would like to thank all my opponents for excellent battles, especially those where I got the kicking. It certainly helped me learn and remember a few things! I also want to thank the organisers who made this wonderful event! Next year Katowice crew will surely arrive again! And last thanks go to that crew, which helped make that evening party as well as the long car rides much more pleasant!
Also I have decided I should do this tournament thing much more often! It's probably the best opportunity to play the game competetively and to learn new things - the better you play the better the opponents you face, which make for every match to be exciting and challanging.
And that's it, thanks for reading!
A Polish version of this report will be available tomorrow. I'm a tad too tired to translate now!