Friday, 27 March 2020

Best laid plans and all that..............

So in the words of the Scottish poet, Robert Burns, "The best-laid schemes o' mice an' me, Gand aft agley, An' lea'e us nought but green An' pain, For promis'd joy!", Well, ok, that might be a bit dramatic but the sentiment is there.

Last weekend my wife, daughter and youngest were supposed to travel south to a baton twirling tournament, her first ever tournament, which she was quite excited about. I think the whole thing about getting dress up together, you know, doing hair and make up in the morning and getting on all the shiny sparkling dresses appealed more to her than the actual tournament but then she's still just a little girl, so I can't blame her for that. Anyway, off the back of that they were going to spend the week at the in-laws, while me and the biggest spent the week at home while he finished off the school term. We would them join them once the school term had finished, meaning g we would have had a week at home together and we had a plan, well, the little man had a plan and I had a plan and at several points the plans overlapped, which was fine by me.

My son's plans basically involved spending time after school painting and playing kill team, going down the club on Sunday (last Sunday as you read this) and also getting my guard army out to look at. My plan on the other hand was a little more complicated and was due to occur once the young man had gone to bed.

My plan

One thing that's missing of the list is basing my models, even though I don't actually know how I'm going to base my kill teams yet. I was planning on going to the club as well and doing a few bits and pieces with the young man after school but the main effort was going to be getting as much done as possible once he was in bed.

However, with all that has been going on in the world, the young ladies tournament was cancelled, flights were cancelled and holiday put on hold and instead of doing DIY during the day and modelling at night, I'm trying to keep 3 little ones busy all day and looking after the little one most of the evening, with zero hobby time. I've played a few games with the little ones, although they have been on a very modified rules set.

 I'm hoping to get some painting done at some point, if we can get the little one down for a few hours in the evenings.

Life at the moment is, as I'm sure it is for a lot of us, in a constant state of flux and we're pretty much taking it one day at a time right now and I sincerely hope that all who are reading this are health and safety and with a bit of luck and common sense we will get through these troubling times. 

Monday, 2 March 2020

Old stuff day

So it's that time of year again, Old Stuff Day. Now, the idea of Old Stuff Day is to showcase some of your older posts, ones that you do t think got the credit that they deserved but it's also to showcase other posts from other bloggers, which you also think deserves recognition.

So, I went back through my posts to see what old posts I might like to showcase and it was an interesting experience! I started this blog over 5 years ago! One of the first posts was about my eldest starting nursery! As I sit here cradling my youngest while my eldest is at school, the middle child is currently at nursery but will be starting school in August. Yet one thing hasn't changed, as I'm still talking about a lack of hobby time!

It was really hard to actually pick a post or two to put up on here, however, I think I've found one.

When 8th was the next big thing in the GW pipe line, I did a series of posts about my thoughts and hopes for various factions going forward in to 8th. The two guard posts, about the guard themselves a d another post about the Militarum Tempestus, who had been split to make them a stand alone subfaction. The two posts have since become my two most viewed posts, where as the one I did for the marines has languished somewhere near the bottom if the views pile. So dispite the fact that it has absolutely no relevance to the current game or anything else, here is my choice for old stuff day;

Now, I would also like to take this time to point people in the direction on another blog, one that sadly seems to have gone out of print, so to speak, Cadia's Creed. Now as I said there hasn't been any updates since the release of 8th but I wanted to highlight it none the less, as it was the first blog I really started reading and as the inspiration for finally getting my own blog going. So, for a bit of personal nostalgia on old stuff day;

Friday, 28 February 2020

It a state of mind.

It's been a while since I've put some of my hobby thoughts, so, with little else to post at the moment, I have decided to put pen to paper (kinda) and let my thoughts and ideas spill out for your amusement.

It's not just a lack of stuff to post about that have led to this post but also some recent developments from GW, namely the previews from the Las Vegas Open. In terms of 40k, there weren't huge numbers of things  shown but there were a number of new AdMech units, the Pteraxii, the Serberys Sulphurhounds and the Serberys Raiders. Place these alongside the other recent AdMech releases, the two tanks and the planes, there is now a whole range of new AdMech units to get excited over. Or rather it's a whole load of units I should be getting excited over but just can't. It's not that I've lost my hobby mojo or any of my love for 40k but my desire for new shiny things has dulled slightly.

I think part of the reason is due to the new primaris unit. Now don't worry this isn't going to turn in to a rant against primaris units, even if the lore does suck but its more to do with the fact that I have one almost complete Blood Angels army and a Dark Angels army primed ready to paint and now both of them are effectively defunct. I put a lot of love in to the armies, especially the BA one and now there in a box in the loft and will no doubt stay there for many years to come. I plan on getting a new marine army at some point but not until more primaris units have been released, ones that are more inline with my ideas for a fast, aggressive, close combat army.

The other reason I think my enthusiasm has wained is due to the fact that there have been very little guard releases lately. Guard have always been my favorite army and they haven't been any new models recently, despite two units being released\previewed that have got me annoyed. The units in question is the GSC Atalan Jackals and the AdMech Serberys. Why have they annoyed me? Simple, because where are my Rough Riders? I'll not turn this into a rant about rough riders either but needless to say, they removed such an iconic unit from the game and then released 2 others that are basically what rough riders should be........ Anyway, right now, if it's not about the guard, I'm not really bothered.

There is also the fact that I'm still really into Kill Team, even if I haven't Played in months. I love the small scale of the game and I've built various teams, several guard and marine, plus AdMech and chaos. I'm also going to get sisters at some point in the year. It means I can have all the various armies that I want, without the huge out lay for models and without needing as much time to paint them. The there is the fact that the games take only a fraction of the time to play and, in case you haven't guessed already, time is a big factor these days. With 3 kids, including a very active toddler, getting time to do anything is a rarity.

I still love the game and everything around it, this blog is testament to that, as this blog was started way back when my eldest was just about to start nursery (some 5 and a half years ago now!), as a way to stay connected to the hobby when I didn't have time to paint or play. These new units do excite me, as they show what's capable from GW and show new ideas and thinking. Plus there's no doubt that they are stunning models, full of detail and character. I would still love to have shelves full of painted armies, imperial ones anyway but as I struggle to even paint o e model properly these days, full armies is a bit far fetched.

Ultimately I think this is what's killing the enthusiasm for the wider model range, lack of time. Long term followers of the blog will probably have noticed that the armies I've planned over the years has dwindled and I've got none planned at the moment, only a few to finish. I will get time to paint and play again soon, when is another question but when I do, I will no doubt make every effort to catch up on my armies and want to buy every shiny new thing that's released.

Now, I've read through this a few times and no, it doesn't make much sense and there's little structure to the post, partly as this was just a wondering through my thoughts and because I wrote this in several sitting when I could grab 5 minutes, meaning half the time I'd forgotten what I was writing or thinking. I thought about amending it all but in the end just though I'd leave it as it is, to show that when it comes to the hobby these days, my mind is all over the place and there's never time to site a collect my thoughts properly. One day there will be, just not today.

Tuesday, 18 February 2020

The Greater Good pt2

Following on from my post last week, this is the second half of my look at the new Imperial Guard rules found in the lastest Psychic Awakening book, the Greater Good. This post will focus on the Militarum Tempestus rules. This will mostly focus on the new Doctrines for the Scions, turning them back into a full fledged force in there own right, similar to how they were in 7th.

There are some good options here and some that aren't quite so good.

First up, for no other reason than it's the first picture blogger put in and it just happens to be the standard Doctrine, well almost anyway. This is slightly revised as it goes from generating an extra hit roll to a straight extra hit. While extra hits are good, in theory though it's only going to come in to play at less than nine inches and it doesn't solve the main problem with Scions, there short range.

In contrast, this does exactly the opposite, adding that much needed range. Adding 6 inches to the range of all rapid fire weapons brings hotshot lasguns up to the range of the volley guns and more importantly, brings the rapid fire range up to 12 inches and means that you can now reach out and touch targets from deep strike. I do like this doctrine as it does fix the biggest issue for me, the lack of range.

These guys are the current poster boys for the Tempestus Scions and their doctrine is a little odd. Firstly there are two parts, the only one that does. Secondly, the first half has a very specific effect, as it effects heavy type weapons, of which the Scions have only one, the Volley Gun. Now, does this signal a change and we might be getting heavy weapons teams for Scions? I doubt it, which I guess is why we get the second part, that when exiting a transport, they get a +1 to hit. This is pretty good, bringing there hit rolls to a 2+ when they disembark. However, it then does limit there options for deployment as the majority of the time they will gain no benefits from the doctrine. They only way to run these I think is from a taurox or more likely a Valkyrie and drop them point blank range, with a command squad full of volley guns.

This is probably the only doctrine that I don't really understand. To my mind, you are going to be running these guys against Marines (of both varieties) and they have both high leadership and ways to re-roll that leadership, so the effect of moral is lessened. Where this trait would be best is in lower leadership big squads, such as guard, eldar guardians, Tau fire warriors, chaos cultists and the likes, where two or three casualties will cause the squad major problems in moral but then these are not really the primary targets for hotshot lasguns. I'm really not sure about this tactic and it's the only one I don't see how I could use.

Again, this doctrine confused me at first but once I'd considered it for a while, it does make more sense to me. It brings the lasguns and pistols up to AP-3, where I think they should have been all along ( well they were S3 AP3 under the old system), putting MEQ's under more pressure. In addition it brings some much needed AP to things like bolt pistols and flamers, as well as grenade launcher. This really does help these weapons but it does push these forces in to two different directions. While it does help with there primary role taking out Marines, it also means that they are better at taking out Guard equivalent units with grenade launcher and flamers. If your going up against chaos with a mix of Marines and cultists, then these are the guys to take.

The last doctrine is very similar to the first but with a minor adjustment. Instead of granting extra hits on 6's within half range, the extra hits are generated when targeting the closest unit. This means that you could generate extra hits at any range, just as long as it's the closest unit your shooting at. While it's always useful to get extra hits, this doctrine does push you to target the closest unit in order to get any benefit from the doctrine, so you are probably going to have to choose, closest with benefits or proper target without.

In addition to the doctrines, we also got new relics and warlord traits, one for each regiment.

The relic we're given is for the Thetoid Eagles and is a replacement for a hotshot laspistol. Not only does it double the number of shots but also increases the range. What attracts me to this pistol is the simple fact that every hit causes a mortal wound, removing the second weakness of the hotshot weapons (first being range), their strength (S3). Definitely a good relic in my opinion.

The warlord trait is from the Kappic Eagles and ties in well to their doctrine. More often than not your going to deploy these units from transports and they are generally going to be quite dispersed, giving your warlord a 24 inch range for voice of command and the option to issue orders from inside a vehicle means that you can keep him in contact with other units very easily and not need to expose him unnecessarily. I think this is a good trait to have for these units, however unless your running a pure Scion list, I still wouldn't have my warlord in the Scion detachment.

Lastly we have a couple of stratagems, two of the eight universal stratagems that are available to the Scions. In addition there are 6 regiment specific stratagems, one for each regiment.

I don't know what the other stratagems are yet but this one is very, very good. Being able to drop just 5 inches from an enemy units from a Valkyrie,without having to worry about loosing anyone is amazing and will be used pretty much Everytime anyone deploys units in Valkyries. Now, the big question I have, is how does this actually work. I can see it working two ways right now; firstly, you select the flyer and a unit inside gains the benefit of the stratagem or secondly, you select the flyer and every units inside gains the benefits. The way I read this, every you select the flyer and every units on board (with aerial drop) gains the benefit of the stratagem, meaning you could load up a Valkyrie with two command squads and a tempestor with command rod, drop them at point blank range and unload. Now the 5 inch is key, as it puts you in to melta  range for those sweet damage rolls. In addition, I would assume that this will combine with the Kappic Eagles trait as well for a +1 to hit as well, meaning g you'll be hitting on 2's, with potential rerolls from your tempestor. This is going surpise a number of people.

This another good stratagem and can tie in well to the previous stratagem as well. Whether Dropping in you character with something like Old Grudges, or just bolstering a flank with Draconian Discipline, the options are all good and for a CP this is pretty much a must take. 

From the previews shown here, there are a couple of combinations that really stick out to me. The aforementioned Kappic Eagles doctrine combined with Precision Drop and a Tempestor with Progeny of Conflict, using Old Grudges and issuing the Take Aim order to two command squad. This will give you two units of 4 special weapons, hitting on 2's, rerolling 1's and rerolling wounds. Whatever you hit is going to have a really bad day. Yes this is a one hit wonder, but the units probably aren't going to survive until the next turn anyway, so it's a case of hitting the priority target hard and doing everything you can to make sure you eliminate it. Another way to run the Kappic Eagles would be to load up in Taurox's and using the warlord trait and their doctrine, charge forward before disembarking and unloading while the warlord issues orders from the safety of a transport. The final way I think you can think to run things, from what we've seen so far anyway and that's to use the Lambdan Lions or psion jakals , use a Valkyrie to drop in a large squad with flamers or grenade launcher just behind an enemy squad, using Precision Drop to get in flamer range and then go to town on the unit. This would work best on large squads, such as conscripts or a full squad of warriors, or something similar. 

While we still have a lot to see, this is shaping up to be a very good addition to the Scions and maybe a sign of the Militarum Tempestus gaining there own codex again, or more likely a codex supplement, along the lines of the recent marine supplements.