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Happiness is success... (Buddha)

Monday, October 31, 2011

BeakyCon GT Report

This past weekend saw the inaugural debut of BeakyCon held at the Marriott hotel in the Tampa airport (Florida). We had just under 40 players. This was a competitive track 40k tournament with no soft scores. The top four players from Day One would move into the Golden Bracket for Day Two while the rest would slug it out in the Silver Bracket. Normally I am not one to take a lot of pictures but I decided it would be nice to have a few for this report and help tell the story about the GT.

BeakyCon Complete Final Standings

Complete Final Standings

Gold Bracket

1. Alan Blakesborough (Grey Knights)
2. Brian Poole (Grey Knights)
3. Max Rodriguez (Imperial Guard)
4. Nick Aad (Dark Eldar)

Silver Bracket

1. Brad Bitler (Space Wolves)
2. Mike Miller (Orks)
3. John Lennon (Tyranids)
4. Cliff Kump (Imperial Guard)
5. Joseph Sledge (Grey Knights)
6. Scott Lester (Grey Knights)
7. Mason Martindale (Eldar)
8. Harold Cowan (Salamanders)
9. Teddy Woody (Space Wolves)
10. Bruce Merker (Dark Eldar)
11. Rich Banks (Space Wolves)
12. Alex Aguila (Grey Knights)
13. Aaron Hagney (Tau)
14. Gabe Dieguez (Dark Eldar)
15. Ray Ortega (Space Wolves)
16. Chris Kosanke (Dark Eldar)
17. David Dos Passos (Grey Knights)
18. Jake Harai (Deathwing)
19. Brandon Irlbeck (Tyranids)
20. Chris Winans (Blood Angels)
21. Norse Hutchens (Tau)
22. Chip Witte (Chaos Space Marines)
23. Wilson Annichiarico (Eldar)
24. Kurt Williams (Deathwing)
25. Rob Carr (Space Marines)
26. Dean Morton (Blood Angels)
27. Tommy Tully (Space Wolves)
28. Shawn Phippen (Deamons)
29. Scott Hutchens (Imperial Guard)
30. Blake Gerger (Space Wolves)
31. Brandon McSween (Grey Knights)
32. Victor Hanby (Imperial Guard)

(Did not list players that dropped)

Army Counter:

Blood Angels - 2
Chaos Space Marines - 1
Chaos Daemons - 1
Deathwing - 2
Dark Eldar - 4
Eldar - 2
Grey Knights - 8
Imperial Guard - 3
Orks - 1
Space Marines - 2
Space Wolves - 6
Tau - 2
Tyranids - 2

Sunday, October 30, 2011

BeakyCon Final Results

Golden Bracket
1st place - Alan Blakesborough, Grey Knights (Easley, SC)
2nd place - Brian Poole, Grey Knights (Fort Lauderdale, FL)

Honorable Mention
Nick Aad (Miami, FL)
Max Rodriguez (Miami, FL)

Silver Bracket
1st place - Brad Bitler, Space Wolves (Miami, FL)
2nd place - Mike Miller, Orks (FL)

Best Army (Tie)
Chris Winnans - Blood Angels (Largo, FL)
Mason Martindale - Eldar (Naples, FL)

Players' Choice
Aaron Hagney - Tau (Naples, FL)

Thanks to everyone who came out and for all the fantastic support !! I'll be releasing a comprehensive tournament report later this week with lots of pictures.

Here is a special thanks to the following individuals for their support that above and beyond the call of duty:

— Matt Douthat (Clearwater, FL) - my right hand man... Couldn't have done it without him
— Harold Cowan (Brandenton, FL) - brought terrain for 12 tables
— Aaron Hagney (Naples, FL) - provided all the tournament documentation (big job and very well done)
— Chris Winans (Largo, FL) - helped us prepare all the tabletops
— James Caudill (Tampa, FL) - our local vendor (Anthem Games) who provided lots of excellent support
— Alex Aguila (Miami, FL) - brought seven other awesome players along with himself from the Miami area
— The wonderful staff at the Marriott

Many others also provided fantastic support which helped to ensure a great inaugural event. Thanks again to everyone who came out !!

BeakyCon Finals

Final Round Golden Bracket - Brian Poole vs. Alan Blakesborough

Final Round Silver Bracker - Brad Bitler vs. Mason Martindale (eldar)

BeakyCon 2nd Day Pairings

Golden Bracket Round 1 Pairings

Brian Poole (GK) vs. Nick Aad (DE)
Alan Blakesborough (GK) vs. Max Rodriguez (IG)

Silver Bracket 2nd Round

Brad Bitler (SW) vs. John Lennon (NIDZ)

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Friday, October 28, 2011

Directions to the Ballroom West - Hillsborough Room

When you enter the lobby go to the left and there is a hallway that leads to all the ballrooms. Go all the way to the back until you see the Hillsborough Room. That's where the GT is going to take place.


BeakyCon conference room update part II - Ballroom West

We have been moved to a larger ballroom to better accommodate our venue. It will be held in the Ballroom West on the lobby level.


BeakyCon - conference room update

The conference room we will be using might change so ask at the front desk when you arrive at the hotel where the Warhammer 40k tournament will be held. I'll post it up today when I find out the final details.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Long Black Poisoned Claws

I was talking to my good buddy Hod over in Orlando this afternoon about his list and it seems we both have very similar philosophies in regards to playing Nidz - Hod is kicking butt as well.

There are certain units that are very expensive and can suck. The following immediately come to mind:

— Hive Tyrant (4 wounds, not an Eternal Warrior)
— Tryannofex (BS3)
— Carnifex

On the other hand there are very cheap units that can really kick the enemy right in their shards. These units are the gants... When in synapse range you have nothing to worry about and spreading synapse around is easy to do as well... Half of the units in my army provide synapse... One third of my units provide Shadow in the Warp.

Trygon Primes and genestealers are the top units, the true work horses of the army. Broodlords are so often overlooked but are a means of adding more HQ like characters to your army plus they cannot be singled out in shooting or melee - heck a Broodlord can drop enemy -1 Ld via the psychic power Aura of Despair and it stacks as well. Mix this in with Shadow in the Warp (SitW) and you can easily mess with the Grey Knights. Most Grey Knight units are Ld9 and can only cast one psychic power per turn - the combination of Aura and SitW really curbs their use of psychic powers... Even their Librarian will be hard pressed at times. Every time you successfully block an enemy psychic power is a win for the Hive Mind !

What's not to love about Tyranids? They live only to eat, breed and fight plus they have a plan for total domination. Everything will be eventually assimilated - resistance is futile ! Only the Tyranids have a real plan. What's not to love ?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Part II • Descent of the Tendril - Tryanids vs Grey Knights

The Grey Knights were deployed in a castle with the Vindicare assassin and one psyfleman placed on top of a tower. The landraider was placed in the center of the castle with one razorback on either side. The castle was situated over in one table quarter of my opponent's deployment zone.

I held my entire army in reserve and chose a large building in the middle of the table to infest with my Yrmgal genestealers. The other two genestealer broods would outflank. The Alpha Warrior with his Hormagaunts would come in off of my long table edge. The rest of my units would deep strike.

There were two Seize Ground markers in my opponent's side of the table along with his Capture and Control marker. I had one Seize Ground marker on my side of the table along with my Capture and Control marker placed in the far corner table of my deployment zone. The large building in the center of the table provided ample LOS blocking which I could use as a big screen when my units came in from reserve.

My immediate plan was to pop the razorbacks and get at the small Strike squads early to shutdown Warp Quake. Note that I have four mycetic spores which are really easy kill points for the Grey Knights.

Turn One - Grey Knights
Everything sits still.

Turn One - Tyranids
* Crickets chirp *

Kill Points: GK-0 Nidz-0

 Turn Two - Grey Knights
The Strike squads pop Warp Quake and fire their smoke launchers. All vehicles move just a bit.

Turn Two - Tyranids
Here is what came in from reserve:

• Trygon Prime
• Yrmgal genestealers
• Genestealers
• Warriors
• Termagants
• Doom of Malanti

So over half of my army arrives and I do not have to worry about being piecemealed to death. I bring the Trygon in behind the central building along with the Yrmgal genestealers and Doom. The genestealer brood arrives on the short table close to the Grey Knight castle and will assault one of the razorbacks. The Warriors and termagants drop in back over by my Capture and Control marker safely tucked away for now. The genestealers fleet over towards the razorback, assault it and destroy it. One Grey Knight dies in the explosion. The Broodlord had successfully cast Aura of Despair at the beginning of the assault phase - the Grey Knights then fail their pinning check. Warp Quake has been shut down on one side of the GK castle!

Kill Points: GK-0 Nidz-1

Turn Three - Grey Knights
The Grey Knights train most all their guns on the brood of genestealers and Trygon Prime. All that is left of the genestealers after the smoke has cleared is the Broodlord with one wound and one genestealer. The Trygon Prime is down to three wounds. The Grey Knights also pop the two spores as well.

Turn Three - Tyranids
Here is what came in from reserve:

• Alpha Warrior with Hormogaunts
• Zoanthropes
• Genestealers

The Alpha Warrior and it's posse come in using the central building for cover and fleet towards it. The second brood of genestealers also come in on the short side of the table over by the GK castle and will be able to lend support to the first brood. The Zoies drop down right beside the landraider. The Yrmgal genestealers come out from behind the central building to assault the remaining razorback. Shooting sees the Zoies' spore drop a wound on the assassin while the Trygon kills two more of the Grey Knights in the first strike squad. Both of the Zoanthropes are blocked by the Librarian's psychic hood unfortunately. Assault sees the first Strike squad destroyed and the Yrmgal genestealers destroy the second razorback. The genestealers consolidate into a crater and the second Strike squad pass their leadership tests. At this point I'm actually ahead on kill points... Pretty crazy !! We are tied on both Seize Ground plus Capture and Control so I'm ahead by one kill point.

Kill Points: GK-2 Nidz-3

Turn Four - Grey Knights
It's time for the Grey Knights to go to work now. They've still got lots of firepower to dish out plus the deathstar is fully intact and very mobile thanks to both of the Zoies whiffing.

The Paladins along with the Grand Master and Librarian disembark to line up shots on the genestealers while the landraider and one psyfleman target the Trygon Prime. The genestealers go to ground - one Broodlord and a couple of genstealers manage to survive. The Trygon goes down after failing two cover saves and an armor save. The assassin takes a shot at one of the Broodlords and misses. The other psyfleman pops the Warriors' spore. The lone Strike squad shoots the Yrmgal genestealers but only manage to kill two then charge them and are cut down by the brood. Both the Zoies and their spore are left intact amazingly.

Turn Four - Tyranids
The Grey Knights have surged back but I've still got plenty of units left. I need to shut down the landraider this turn to make sure the deathstar cannot reach around the central building. In comes the last Trygon popping in behind the central building - it's getting a bit crowded back there now. Heh . The Yrmgal genestealers head over to assault a psyfleman while the termagants start to slog forward into synapse range of the second Trygon. The Zoies line up a second salvo on the landraider and manage to immobilize it. Their spore fires on the assassin again and drops him! W00T !!! Assault sees the Yrmgal genestealers rip both arms off of the psyfleman.

We are now tied on all three objectives but I know I'm going to give up a good number of kill points the following turn. In turn the Grey Knights only have a few kill points left to give up and they are all highly resilient. I need to start focusing on contesting my opponent's objectives... I've still got lots of units left with a healthy amount of synapse so I'll have to try to flood his area with more units than he can kill. Immobilizing the landraider was pretty huge this turn.

Kill Points: GK-5 Nidz-5

Turn Five - Grey Knights
The deathstar has to make some hard choices now. The only target they can see are what's left of the second genestealer brood which can also be targeted by the landraider. The psyfleman in the tower can't see much either. The deathstar opts to focus on the Zoies as they are too far away to reach the Yrmgal genestealers this turn. The landraider destroys the last of the genestealer brood while the deathstar aces the Zoies. The psyfleman in the tower destroys the last spore. The Yrmgal genestealers manage to immobilize the psyfleman.

Turn Five - Tyranids
I bring forward the brood of 20 devilgants using the Trygon as their primary synapse anchor. The Alpha Warrior along with it's posse come around the far side of the building using it for cover. The next turn these units can swarm the Grey Knights. This turn the Yrmgal genestealers finally manage to destroy the psyfleman.

The deathstar is left holding two of the Seize Ground markers and their Capture and Control Marker as well plus the Grey Knights are now up by two kill points (which as I've said will be next to impossible to overtake).

Kill Points: GK-8 Nidz-6

Turn Six - Grey Knights
Again the deathstar has some tough decisions. If they go after the Yrmgal genestealers they will move off of their objective markers... Nothing else is in their range and the landraider is facing in the wrong direction to shoot anything. The psyfleman in the tower targets the Warrior brood and kills two but the third is safe behind cover holding my Capture and Control objective. The deathstar shoots at the Yrmgals who have cover but only manage to kill a couple and they pass their leadership test.

Turn Six - Tyranids
The Alpha Warrior and his posse hop back to hold my Seize Ground marker behind the central building while the devilgants anchored by the Trygon surge forward again careful to remain outside of the deathstar's assault arc. The Yrmgals move and then fleet to contest the Grey Knight's Seize Ground and Capture and Control markers. The lone Warrior is sitting safely on my Capture and Control marker. We roll the dice to see if there is a turn seven and the game ends. I end up winning two objectives to one.

Post Game Analysis
If the game had gone onto a final seventh turn the deathstar would have killed the Yrmgals then I would have moved up the termagants to contest the Grey Knight objectives again. I think this was a good example of how to use Null Zone Deployment tactics to counter Grey Knights. I was able to neutralize the amount of damage the GK deathstar could generate while systemically removing other units over the course of the game. The last turn I was in a good position to contest for the win.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Part I • Descent of the Tendril - Tyranids versus Grey Knights

I had the opportunity this afternoon to get in a match versus Grey Knights with my tendril. I was using almost the exact same list as in my recent game versus Space Pups. Grey Knights are a tougher matchup due to their many inherent advantages versus Tyranids but I was focused on exploiting their inherent weaknesses. Deployment was Pitched Battle. The mission used the BeakyCon 40k format - three objectives all equally weighted - killpoints, Seize Ground plus Capture and Control. Whichever player takes the most objectives wins the game. If there is a draw on the three objectives then victory points are used as the tie breaker.

Tyranid Reserve Army List (2000 points)

Here is my abbreviated army list:

Alpha Warrior - pair of bone swords, adrenal glands & scything talons

Trygon Prime - adrenal glands
Trygon Prime - adrenal glands

10x Yrmgal genestealer
2x Zoanthropes - mycetic spore
Doom of Malanti (DoM) - mycetic spore

20x termagant w. Devourers (devilgants)- mycetic spore
10x genestealer w. toxin sacs & scything talons incl. Broodlord
10x genestealer w. toxin sacs & scything talons incl. Broodlord
3x Warrior - adrenal glands, 2x deathspitter, barbed strangler, pair of bone swords - mycetic spore
10x Hormogaunt - adrenal glands & toxin sacs

Before I go into the detail of the actual batrep here is the background for my army. A splinter of the Gehuibius fleet has come upon the fringes of the easternmost Imperial system. Psychic gestalt is powerful in the area for some unknown reason and the Tyranids are feeding upon it in droves. While this area is not of any particular importance to the Imperium it has been chosen as a training ground certain chapters of the Astartes. At first victories seemed almost easily assured but now losses are starting to mount and there is a concern as the splinter has drawn back the attention of it's parent tendril. A huge number of Hive ships are reported returning to the area en masse. What once almost considered a farce is now a steadily growing concern. More resources are being committed to staunch the ever increasing rapid xenos growth.

Pre Game Analysis
As I said Grey Knights have a lot of inherent advantages versus Tyranids (e.g., psykout grenades, psychic hood, Warp Quake, etc.). Grey Knights can easily pull a victory but it seems that Tyranids have to work it really hard for a win. The mission featured three equally weighted objectives - kill points, Seize Ground plus Capture and Control. My army has lots of scoring units so I have to focus on taking the objective markers. I am playing a pure reserve army and have switched out my Hive Guard for Zoanthropes. Small elite armies such as Grey Knights need to castle so using Null Deployment tactics can take away some of their inherent strengths. Tyranids have some psychic defense so I would need to exploit that facet of my army. My opponent only had three scoring units (two Strike squads and the Paladins via the Grand Strategy) so I concentrated on taking out the weak ones (i.e., Strike squads). Strike squads have the psychic power Warp Quake to nerf deep striking units but fortunately Tyranids have ample other methods of entering the battlefield via reserve while still coming in close to the enemy. My game plan was to win on Capture and Control plus Seize Ground. This strategy meant I would have to take some risks and saturate the area on the battlefield holding the most objectives.

One my strategies versus small elite armies is to place objective markers close to a short table edge where I think my opponent will castle so my outflanking genestealers can quickly hit any enemy units deployed to guard those. I also try to avoid combat with the more resilient Grey Knight units such as Paladins... They will just chew you up and spit you back out so there is no reason to engage them in my opinion.

Abbreviated Grey Knight Army
Grand Master - psychotropic grenades, rad grenades, warding stave
Librarian - Might of Titans, Quicksilver, Sanctuary, Shrouding, Warp Rift, warding stave

5x Paladin - Brotherhood banner, psycannon, 2x daemonhammer
Vindicare assassin

Dreadnaught - 2x twin linked autocannon, psybolt ammo
Dreadnaught - 2x twin linked autocannon, psybolt ammo

Landraider Crusader - extra armor, multi-melta

5x Grey Knight (Strike squad) - psycannon, daemonhammer - razorback w. twin linked lascannon
5x Grey Knight (Strike squad) - psycannon, daemonhammer - razorback w. twin linked lascannon

The second part of this article will feature the actual battle report. The batrep should be up very soon.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Descent of the Tendril - Tyranids vs Space Wolves

I had the opportunity to recently play a game with my current Tyranid list versus one of the better SW players in my area. The mission used the BeakyCon 40k format - three objectives all equally weighted - killpoints, Seize Ground plus Capture and Control. Whichever player takes the most objectives wins the game. If there is a draw on the three objectives then victory points are used as the tie breaker. We randomly rolled for objectives and got Spearhead.

Here is my abbreviated army list:

Alpha Warrior - pair of bone swords, adrenal glands & scything talons

Trygon Prime - adrenal glands
Trygon Prime - adrenal glands

10x Yrmgal genestealer
3x Hive Guard (note that in the future I'll switch this unit out for a couple of Zoanthropes mounted in a mycetic spore)
Doom of Malanti (DoM) - mycetic spore

20x termagant w. Devourers (devilgants)- mycetic spore
10x genestealer w. toxin sacs incl. Broodlord
10x genestealer w. toxin sacs incl. Broodlord
3x Warrior - 2x deathspitter, barbed strangler, pair of bone swords - mycetic spore
10x Hormogaunt - adrenal glands & toxin sacs

This is a reserve list with only the Hive Guard starting deployed on the table. After discussing my list with some other respected Tyranid players I've come to the conclusion that Zoies are a better choice since they have synapse and don't need another unit with synapse clode by to prevent Instinctive Behavior tests. The Alpha Warrior is attached to the Hormagants and depending on how my rolls for reserves play out I generally prefer for them to pop out of a burrowed hole left behind by one of the two Trygon Primes. Genestealers typically outflank and obviously the Yrmgal genestealers manifest themselves such that once they become active they can immediately charge a close by enemy unit. The termagants drop in and lay waste to an enemy unit - 60 S4 shots can definitely do some real damage and they can usually target an exposed unit. The Doom of Malanti also drops in from reserve and does it's thing - hopefully working in conjunction with one of the Broodlords (Aura of Despair for -1 Ld which is cumulative if the other Broodlord happens to be in range as well). The Warriors are there mainly to extend the synapse bubble and anchor my backfield - they are not intended to see much action. The two Trygon Primes are basically deterrents and take some of the heat off the other units plus they can extend the synapse bubble from the front.

Here is my opponent's abbreviated Space Wolves list (it's been more than a week since I played this game so my memory is a bit rusty):

Wolf Lord on Thunderwolf mount - thunderhammer, stormshield, runic armor, wolf tooth necklace, Saga of the Bear
Wolf Lord on Thunderwolf mount - frost axe, stormshield, runic armor, wolf tooth necklace

Rune Priest - Living Lightning & JotWW
Rune Priest - Living Lightning & Murderous Hurricane

3x Thunderwolf cavalry (TWC), stormshields, power fist
3x Thunderwolf cavalry, stormshields, power fist

5x Long Fang - 3x missile launcher, 2x lascannon
5x Long Fang - 2x plasma cannon, heavy bolter, 2x missile launcher

10x Grey Hunter - power fist, meltagun, plasmagun - rhino
5x Grey Hunter - plasmagun
5x Grey Hunter - meltagun

As stated above the deployment was Spearhead. I won the roll and opted to go second. My opponent deployed in a castle over in one of his table quarters. One Rune Priest was attached to each of the Long Fang packs. Each Wolf Lord was attached to one of the TWC. I hid my Yrmgal genestealers in a building close to his castle and held everything else in reserve - that's how the army works !!

Turn One - Space Wolves
Both TWC shuffled a bit.

Turn One - Tyranid
* Crickets chirping *

Turn Two - Space Wolves
Again the Space Wolves shuffle a bit in preparation for the soon to come pandemic Tyranid infestation.

Turn Two - Tyranids
In comes one Trygon Prime, the devilgants, one brood of genestealers, Yrmgal genestealers and the Doom of Malanti. The Trygon Prime burrows out from the ground close to one of the five Grey Hunter squads while the devilgants land right in front of a Long Fang pack. The genestealers come in from reserve on the short table edge close to a squad of TWC with the Saga Lord and the Yrmgal genestealers emerge from their slumber to join forces with the other newly arrived brood of genestealers. The DoM drops in close to the castle over beside the TWC that the genestealers are going to multi assaulted. My goal this turn is to remove as many enemy units as possible with as little overlap as possible. The Trygons will be bait units to draw away the TWC so I can pulverize the lil dawgs with my other units. At the beginning of the shooting phase the DoM sucks up a few wounds from a couple of units... Each wound adds to the strength of his pie plate so it's all good. The devilgants shoot down a unit of Long Fangs leaving only the Rune Priest as a bystander. The Trygon fires into a five man squad of Grey Hunters and drops one. The spores fail to inflict any damage. The DoM fires upon a five man squad of Grey Hunters but it scatters off course. The genestealers fleet towards one unit of TWC outside of cover - both units will be able to run the tag team in the turnbuckle. After the charge there is one Thunderwolf left with one wound as well as the Wolf Lord with two wounds... I opted to grant the Yrmgal genestealers an extra attack so that was a whole of attacks directed upon the TWC. In return the last TWC and Wolf Lord scores a few wounds versus the broods and pass their morale check. It was a good turn for the tendril.

Turn 3 - Space Wolves
The free unit of TWC move towards the Trygon Prime and the Vindicator lines up a shot on the devilgants. Shooting sees the Trygon Prime lose a couple wounds and the Vindicator's pie plate scatters off a bit taking out about a third of the devilgants. The remaining unit of Long Fangs and both Rune Priests target the Trygon Prime as well dropping another couple of wounds. The devilgants are outside of synapse but pass their morale test and hold onto their position. The free TWC assault the Trygon Prime and take down the gigantic beast. The two broods of genestealers then drop the one TWC and the first Wolf Lord consolidating around the Long Fangs and Rune Priests.

Turn 3 - Tyranids
In comes the last squad of genestealers arriving on the opposite short table edge along with the other Trygon Prime and the Alpha Warrior attached to the Hormagaunts. I will use the newly arrived unit of genestealers to claim objectives while the Alpha Warrior and his brood come in off the long table edge hiding behind cover... They are in position to charge the free TWC as a counter assault unit following the predicted charge versus the newly arrived Trygon Prime. The devilgants pass their instinctive behavior test and line up to soak the remaining unit of Long Fangs. The other two units of genestealers move into position to assault any survivors. At the beginning of the shooting phase the DoM sucks up another couple of wounds. The devilgants target the Long Fangs and kill all but two including the attached Rune Priest. The Trygon Prime peppers a five man squad of Grey Hunters and drops one. The DoM then drops it's pie plate and blows the demolisher cannon off the Vindicator. The genestealers then assault the last two Long Fangs and take them out then consolidate towards the rhino transporting tje squad of 10 Grey Hunters. Another good turn for the tendril - everything is going according to the Hive Mind's plan.

Turn 4 - Space Wolves
The free unit of TWC along with the second Wolf Lord move into position to assault the Trygon Prime. The remaining Rune Priest moves into position to assault the devilgants. There is little shooting quickly followed by the assault phase. The Trygon Prime is hammered but the devilgants hold versus the Rune Priest and score one wound in return.

Turn 4 - Tyranids
The three Warriors finally arrive dropping in to provide synapse for the devilgants. The first two broods of genestealers and the Alpha Warrior with his posse converge around the free TWC. There are no enemy units close enough for the DoM to suck wounds so it drops it's pie plate on the Grey Hunters' rhino and destroys it. The Grey Hunters pass their tests and hunker down. The TWC and second Wolf Lord are all destroyed in the assault phase by a massive combi charge.

At this point the writing is on the proverbial wall - the dawgs have suffered a horrid amount of losses while inflicting little damage in return except for the pair of Trygons. We play it out and I end up winning the game by two objectives to one (killpoints| Seize Ground versus Capture and Control).

Like I said everything went according to the plan. The Trygons were bait to pull the TWC away from the lil dawgs. My reserve rolls were average and the army performed as expected. I think my opponent's biggest mistake was to castle his army as the genestealers got into his lines early and quickly swept through while avoiding any enemy shooting in return... That was huge. The second mistake was deploying the castle in a corner where they could quickly be reached by my genestealers.The Alpha Warrior with his Hormagaunts were devastating versus the TWC - Tyranids as a whole are very mobile and can lay down lots and lots of attacks... It's all about getting them into position to shoot and assault. You need to get in quick and wreck as much havoc as possible. I've lost to this same SW army twice with my Draigowing so as far as I'm concerned it's no joke. I bought the bulk of my Tyranid army from this same player - I don't think he was expecting what happened. I made a few tweaks to the list presented here such as dropping a winged Hive Tyrant in exchange for the Alpha Warrior and converting a Mawloc into a second Trygon Prime.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Sometimes I try to do things but it just doesn't work out the way I want it to, and I get real frustrated and then like I try hard to do it, and I like, take my time but it just doesn't work out the way I want it to. It's like, I concentrate on it real hard, but it just doesn't work out. And everything I do and everything I try, it never turns out. It's like, I need time to figure these things out, but there's always someone there going “hey mike, you know we've been noticing you've been having a lot of problems lately, you know? You need to maybe get away. And like, maybe you should talk about it, you'll feel a lot better.” And I'm all like “oh, nah, it's ok, you know. I'll figure it out. Just leave me alone, I'll figure it out, you know? I'm just working on it by myself.” And they go “well, you know, if you wanna talk about it, I'll be here, you know? And you'll probably feel a lot better if you talk about it. So why don't you talk about it?” I go “no, I don't want to! I'm ok. I'll figure it out myself!” But they just keep bugging me, they just keep bugging me, and it builds up inside.

So you're gonna be institutionalized.
You'll come out brainwashed with bloodshot eyes.
You won't have anything to say.
They'll brainwash you until you see their way.

I'm not crazy - IN AN INSTITUTION!!!
You're the one that's crazy - IN AN INSTITUTION!!!
You're driving me crazy - IN AN INSTITUTION!!!

They stuck me in an institution,
Said it was the only solution
To give me the needed professional help to protect me from the enemy, myself.

I was in my room and I was just like staring at the wall thinking about everything, but then again I was thinking about nothing. And then my mom came in, and I didn't even know she was there. She called my name and I didn't hear her and then she started screaming “Mike, Mike!” And I go “what? What's the matter?” She goes “what's the matter with you?” I go “there's nothing wrong, mom.” Shes all “don't tell me that! You're on drugs!” I go “no mom, I'm not on drugs. I'm ok, I'm just thinking, you know? Why don't you get me a Pepsi?” She goes “No! You're on drugs!” I go “mom, I'm ok. I'm just thinking.” She goes “No! You're not thinking, you're on drugs! Normal people don't be acting that way!” I go “mom, just get me a Pepsi! Please, all I want is a Pepsi!” And she wouldn't give it to me! All I wanted was a Pepsi, just one Pepsi, and she wouldn't give it to me! Just a Pepsi!

They give you a white shirt with long sleeves!
Tied around your back, you're treated like thieves!
Drug you up because they're lazy!
It's too much work to help a crazy!

I'm not crazy - IN AN INSTITUTION!!!
You're the one who's crazy - IN AN INSTITUTION!!!
You're driving me crazy - IN AN INSTITUTION!!!

They stuck me in an institution,
Said it was the only solution
To give me the needed professional help, to protect me from the enemy, myself.

I'm sitting in my room, when my mom and my dad came in. they pulled up a chair and they sat down. They go “mike, we need to talk to you.” And I go “ok, what's the matter?” They go “me and your mom, we've noticed that lately you've been having a lot of problems, and you've been going off for no reason, and we're afraid you're going to hurt somebody, and we're afraid you're going to hurt yourself. So we decided that it would be in your best interest if we put you somewhere where you could get the help that you need.” And I go “wait, what are you talking about, WE decided? MY best interests? How do you know what MY best interest is? How can you say what MY best interest is? What are you trying to say? I'M crazy? When I went to YOUR schools, I went to YOUR churches, I went to YOUR institutional learning facilities? So how can you say I'M crazy?”

They say they're gonna fix my brain.
Alleviate my suffering and my pain.
But by the time they fix my head,
Mentally I'll be dead.

I'm not crazy - IN AN INSTITUTION!!!
You're the one who's crazy - IN AN INSTITUTION!!!
You're driving me crazy - IN AN INSTITUTION!!!

They stuck me in an institution,
Said it was the only solution
To give me the needed professional help, to protect me from the enemy, myself.

Doesn't matter, I'll probably get hit by a car anyways.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Thing - movie review

I've always been a huge fan of both Kurt Russell and John Carpenter. To me they both left their print on the industry. The new movie The Thing released this weekend so I had to see it. It has been sold to the market as a prequel but in reality it closely follows the 1980s version by John Carpenter in terms of both storyline and CGI. Carpenter's version was a classic and that is a big pair of boots to fill so I was just happy to see a new version and I enjoyed the movie a lot. Luckily no dickheads as yet have given away the ending where the new version can leave it's mark. Maybe when I'm living in Sun City another version will be released again and based on this one I'd go see it again. If you like SciFi|Horror then I'll think you might like this movie. The original version released in the 1950s featured James Arness as the alien - he was the Marshall Matt Dillon in the old television show Gun Smoke. The movie is based upon a short story by James Campbell entitled Who Goes There. I haven't read it yet but I plan to do so soon.

What I enjoy the most about these movies is the concept of an alien that is truly alien - it is beyond our imagination and not friendly by any means. Humans are pitted against something that truly tests our mettle. So I definitely recommend this movie to anyone that enjoys graphic gore presented in the context of SciFi or Horror - it is truly both.

Sunday, October 09, 2011

The dark tendril finally descends

I have not posted much the past few days. BeakyCon planning is taking up a lot of my free time. That said things are still kicking about. Recently I have picked up a Tyranid army and revamped it to fit my play style. Often I make fun of the codex and say spiteful things about Robin Cruddance. He could have done a much better job in my opinion and the FAQ was crap. I guess he feels he really needs the job he has. Nidz were top tier in 4th edition. I played around with the new army when it was released for 5th edition. There was a lot of talk at the time about how awesome they would be but for the most part it never came to be for whatever reason. So why I am talking about the hive ? Well enough time has passed that I feel I can say what I said came to be for the most part. That might sound a bit haughty and hopefully I will make my case. I was never a big fan of Tervigons as awesome as they might sound and as awesome as they are... Sure they can enhance other units and spawn lots of gants... But I never had any fascination for them. I feel that way about a lot of the units in the codex and a lot of that has to do with their overall design... It just seems really half arsed and lacking. For example why can't Ravengers take adrenal glands? Hive Tyrants have a big bullseye painted on them, only have four wounds and are not eternal warriors - why even bother ? As a competitive gamer you are paying lots of points for a unit that does not get the job done on an overall basis and the Hive Tryant is supposed to be the lynchpin... At least it should be in my mind. Basically Tyranids still have the same problem they always did even as far back as fourth edition and that is the ability to effectively bust armor.

So yeah there are lots of things that could have easily been a lot better but that said there are some good things so I'll focus on that in this article.

You have access to lots of troop choices that are at least pretty good... The ones I like the best are genestealers, Warriors, termagants and hormagants. All of these units have access to either Mycetic spores or can outflank. Using reserves is a big part of 40k now and it's nice to have access to these units that can fill five to six slots in your force organization chart (FoC). Tyranids in my opinion have the most access to the widest array of good troop choices so why not take advantage of this aspect? In fact I think every good Tyranid player does so. You can put a lot of bodies on the ground for relatively cheap and Tyranids are very strong in objective based games for this very reason. Genestealers are god like in melee. Termagants are good at shooting if you're willing to invest the points. Hormagants are fast and also good in melee. Warriors extend your synapse bubble.

Here you have the most of the best choices and this is one of the biggest problems with the codex. Look at the new Blood Angels or Grey Knights codices as counter examples - both of these two armies you can take all the elite choices you need without having to forgo the option fot other units including other elite choices. To me Yrmyl genestealers and Hive Guard are the two main Go To units. The Doom of Malanti is another great choice as well. These are the three units I take. The DoM is very good at what it does, especially versus small elite armies - if well played the DoM can cripple hardcore enemy units quickly forcing the opponent to concentrate on removing it from play.

Hive Yyrants and Tervigons are the favorites but I eschew the use of both as said above. Another slap in the face to Tyranid players was the FAQ ruling that the Alpha Warrior cannot attach to a unit in a Mycetic spore - it just didn't make any sense at all. Still he is a beast and my work around is to join him to a unit of Hormagants. I hold them in reserve and if they come in late then they can pop out of a hole left behind by a Trygon... Otherwise they come in on their table edge using fleet to quickly reach the places they need to be. Tyranids need lots of synapse to win - it's always been that way. I prefer to take the Alpha Warrior since he is an independent character and cannot be targeted in the enemy shooting phase like Tyrants and Tervigons. Give him a pair of bone swords and he will shred dedicated enemy melee units.

Fast Attack
The Trygon Prime has synapse and acts much like an HQ. Kit the beast with toxin sacs and he is rerolling both to hit and wound plus it can parcel out a lot of shots. They are also very fast as well.

So there you have it. This is my vision of how to successfully play the army taking a mix of units that have the most synergy. There is no long ranged AT shooting so you'll have to rely upon your fast melee units to pop and surpress armor. You've got lots of little bugs plus some big ones to wreck havoc. The army must be well played and it's quite doable. I've consistently beaten Space Wolves and Grey Knights with my army. I'm looking to get in a game versus IG to see how I fare against them as well.

Happy Hunting !

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Wow it's already October... BeakyCon is right around the corner now !!!

Wow it’s already October now! My how fast time flies. BeakyCon is right around the corner.

Here is some information for you as a gamer that you need to know:

1) The GT is 2000 points.
2) No Forgeworld units are allowed.
3) We only use the GW FAQs.
4) All models must be WYSIWYG and fully assembled. Proxies are not allowed.
5) Bring 9 copies of your army list with you. Each copy must be typed and stapled with your full name appearing on the front page. We prefer that you use Army Builder if you have access to the software. Your army list must provide complete details for every unit.
6) Make sure to bring your codex, rulebook, measuring tape, templates and dice. It’s also always a good idea to bring some glue in case a mini breaks.
7) Registration starts at 7:30am on Saturday – please be there at that time. You will receive a player registration ID number and tournament kit. The tournament kit will include the scenarios, score sheets and a player tracker so you can keep a running tally of your scores. There will be some coffee for the first to arrive both mornings.
8) You can park in the Marriott hotel parking lot – the cost is $6/day.

If you have any questions then contact me via this email address.

Here is the tentative schedule...

Saturday - October 29

07:30 - 08:30 am - Player Registration

08:45 - 09:00 am - General Announcements & Round 1 Table Assignments

09:00 - 11:30 am - Round 1

11:30 - 12:15 pm - Lunch Break

12:30 - 03:00 pm - Round 2

03:30 - 06:00 pm - Round 3

Sunday - October 30

07:00 - 07:30 am - Table Assignments for Silver Bracket

07:30 - 10:00 am - Silver Bracket Round 1

10:30 - 01:00 pm - Golden Bracket Round 1 | Silver Bracket Round 2

01:00 - 01:45 pm - Lunch Break

02:00 - 04:30 pm - Golden Bracket Round 2 | Silver Bracket Round 3

05:30 - 06:30 pm - Awards Ceremony

We look forward to seeing you soon !!

-> G

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Null Zone Strategies versus Grey Knights

I recently read an article by Fritz how to use Null Zone tactics for Tyranids. As fickle fate would have it I was the ringer in a local tourney playing Tyranids. The Tyranid list was a reserve army comprised of the following:

Hive Tyrant - wings, bone sword and lash whip, paroxysm & Hive Commander

Doom - Mycetic spore|cluster spines

Trygon Prime - toxin sacks

10x genestealer
10x genestealer
10x Hormagaunt
20x termagant - Mycetic spore|cluster spines
3x Warrior - 2x devourer & barbed strangler - Mycetic spore|cluster spines

10x Yrmygl genestealer

It was an army I borrowed from a friend who was playing in the RTT. I like the list in principle but would have tweaked the Trygon to have adrenal glands plus I would have kitted the Hormagaunts with toxin sacs and adrenal glands as well. I haven't played Tyranids in a long time so I was a bit rusty and made a few mistakes. Two of my three games were versus Grey Knights. I noticed some interesting facts in general about Grey Knights that I've missed before now - fighting them with a weaker list is a good learning experience indeed! I think we all know that Tyranids got the short end of the stick - they don't match up well versus GK in general but they do have a few advantages. The last game was versus the army that won best overall so I'll focus on what I learned during that game. Note this isn't a batrep per say - I'm simply reporting my findings to hopefully help others.

I talked about Null Zone in the beginning and I'm not referring to the SM psychic power - like I said I'm referring to a recent article by Fritz. It's hard to beat Grey Knights in close combat when they are at full strength because they have so many advantages and it's really hard on Nidz for all the obvious reasons. Here is the thing though - Grey Knight armies tend to be small so they can only cover so much ground. In an objective based mission such as Seize Ground or even Capture and Control you can make them pay. Tyranids are kind of like bears... The small ones might at first look cute and cuddly but there's lots of them and there is certainly going to be some big mean ones close by. If you mess with their porridge don't be surprised if they aren't happy about it. ; )

So right off the bat resist the urge to immediately engage them in melee... Your assault units will invariably die in droves if you do. It's better to force them to spread out to the point where they can no longer effectively support each other. You should be playing keep away initially and well into the mid game if necessary. Whatever shooting you've got should be focused on slowly weakening them over the course of the game. I used the termagants and the Trygon Prime to soak one squad of terminators in the last game. The termagants died the turn after they arrived but on the other hand their sole shooting phase inflicted some damage. I kept the Trygon Prime out of melee until the end of the game so he could shoot as much as possible and this helped as well. The big assault focused on the Hive Tyrant, Hormagants and the Trygon Prime assaulting a remnant squad of terminators with a Techmarine attached. I was able to wipe them all out except for the Techmarine who lived by the grace of his warding stave - hey it happens sometimes.

Just like how Space Wolves Thunder calvary prevents you from running amok admist the Grey Hunters the big bad Paladins are there to protect their weaker brethren such as Strike squads. You can expend a lot of energy trying to get at units such as the Strike squads but to me that's a wasted effort unless they are out in the open deployed away from the bulk of the Grey Knights army... This can happen if the GK player is using their Warp Quake to deny your deep striking units so keep an eye for these opportunities.

Make sure to spread out the objective markers to force your opponent to break up their castle. What you really want to do is isolate the Librarian so his psychic powers can't augment other units he is not attached to such as the Strike squads - if you can negate Sanctuary that is a really big help for melee units that can't take grenades such as every unit in the Tyranid codex.

By turn four it's time to start looking for opportunities to finally assault and you'll want to hit them with the bulk of your army. If you've done it right those Paladins have suffered some wounds along the way and are no better than Grey Knight terminators in melee (except for WS5 of course). If you hit them with enough attacks they will fold and then you are looking in at those Strike squads.

So that's it for now. It's going to be extremely difficult to beat an army such as Draigowing at killpoints but if the game is decided by objectives then it can be done. Force your opponent to spread out and weaken them over the course of the game finally engaging them during the end game to punch through their forces for the win.