Tuesday, 19 June 2018

Blood Angels codex review - Named Characters


So we start off this codex review in the usual place, at the top of the tree, with the HQ options. As with most of the Marine codices there are a large number of named characters to go through. The big difference to the main marine codex is that these are mostly all Blood Angles characters, all of them in fact apart from Gabriel Seth, who is the Flesh Tearers Chapter Master.

I have said previously that as I am running a successor chapter, I wouldn’t be using any of the BA named characters, as for the most part it is not really practical that there would be equivalents in other chapters and with some of the characters, it is explicitly stated that they operate across chapters in there BA form, such as Astorath. I will go through them all briefly though, but I will not spend much time on any of the characters, or for that fact units, that I do not use. I will instead concentrate on the units I do use or intend to use.

Commander Dante

Commander of the Blood Angles and possibly the oldest living Space Marine not interned within a dreadnought. While he is a good force on the table top, able to hold his own in most situations, there really is only one Dante and so there really is no way I could field him on the table top.

Gabriel Seth

What can be said about Seth that hasn’t already been said? I really like him though, in the novels he is really quite a character and he isn’t to keen on the Primaris marines, which is another thing to his credit in my books! However, he is the chapter master of the Flesh Tearers, and I don’t play Flesh Tearers.

The Sanguinor

The Sanguimor is another one of those characters who cannot be replicated as they (he??) can appear anywhere and anytime that a son of Sanguinius is in need of help or at least that’s how its told. So in theory, I could run the Sanguinor as he is, although I would have to do so in something like a Supreme Command Detachment. While I don’t plan on running him at the moment, that may change at a later date, and I will probably run him with Astorath and maybe Mephiston as a BA master class.

Brother Corbulo

This is one of the few named character that I would actually consider running under a different guise, if my opponent allows, as technically you can’t replace the Blood Angles key word. The reason I say this is that he is named because he is the Sanguinary High Priest and carries the Red Grail. It is therefore feasible that there would be a similar character to him in successor chapters, as there is a Sanguinary Priesthood in most of them. It is not impossible that a similar relic such as the Red Grail will exist within these chapters as well and Heaven Teeth is really just a master crafted chain sword. While I have not yet created a Brother Corbulo proxy, I have though about it on many occasions.

The Priest himself is not a bad character, having a good BS and WS of 2+ and 5 wounds. He has a standard profile apart from that and he carries all of the usual Priestly abilities, with Narthecium and the Red Grail being similar to the Blood Chalice carries by normal priests but giving friendly BA units the ability to generate extra attacks. One of the reason that I have yet to make a proxy for Corbulo is that I am still unsure if he is worth the extra over a standard Priest. If I was to use him, then I would be using him in exactly the same fashion as a regular priest and putting him with either a death company squad for the extra strength or with a unit of vanguard vets for the same reason. The only issue that really exists with him is an inability to take a jump pack, which means that he will struggle to keep up with the units he is supposed to accompany. I could place him with a regular tactical squad, but he would not make use of the best ability, the extra strength. Alternatively he could accompany the captain and lieutenant in to battle to help keep them alive for longer.

Chief Librarian Mephiston

The Lord of Death and possibly the most powerful Psyker in the imperium and the only Blood Angle known to have recovered from the Black Rage. This man is a living weapon, or rather he is in the lore. On the table top I really don’t think he is that good. He is not really much better than a regular librarian in my view. The main reason that I wont field him however is the simple fact that he is Mephiston, chief librarian of the Blood Angles and although there are other powerful psykers, none are supposed to be as powerful as he is and so other chapters will just have normal Librarians as there chief librarians and not a super psyker like Mephiston.

Astorath

Astorath the Grim, the Redeemer of the Lost. There can only ever be one Astorath, it even says so in the fluff “Whilst officially bound to the Blood Angles, Astorath’s task carries him far and wide amongst the Chapters successors.” So, that answers that one, there is only one Astorath and he's a Blood Angle, although he might just turn up at your chapters battle barge one day. If I ever field him it would be with the Sanguinor, as I said above but I wouldn’t hold your breath, you could be in for a long wait.

Lemartes

Now here is the anomaly within the named characters, as I do field Lemartes in my armies. Why? Well, it’s a very similar reason to Brother Corbulo. Lemartes is just a chaplain who fell to the Black Rage, which could happen to any chaplain and he’s just sane enough to stick in to stasis at the end of every battle, ready for the next one. This could happen to another chaplain from another chapter and they could just stick him back in to stasis, exactly the same. It all sound pretty plausible to me anyway, so that’s why I use him. This of course relies on my opponent being ok about me fudging the rules slightly, but if not then I can just run him as a normal Chaplain and use the Death Visions of Sanguinius stratagem! Either way he will be fielded with the death company squads, usually in the middle of them to make use of the aura abilities. The main squad that he will always be in range of will be the hammer equipped squad, as with the -1 to hit, these need all the help they can get and considering how hard they can hit, I want to give it to them as well!

Tycho the Lost + Captain Tycho

The last-named character in the book takes two forms, Tychos, Captain of the 3rd company and Tycho the Lost, the Fallen Star. Now, to me this is another character that can’t be replicated, as he has such a back story and lore to him, but in reality you probably could proxy him, as there will be other company captains that will have fallen to the Black Rage at some point or another. I won’t be and I know that sounds strange after the justifications I made for using Lemartes. In reality Tycho is just a regular captain with an extra special rule based around Orks and so I should feel free to proxy him but I just can’t seem to justify it to myself. So I wont be using him in any of my armies.




Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Blood Angels codex review.


I spoke about doing this a while ago, when the book first came out but have held off as there has been a number of other things that i wanted to post about. With those things out of the way, were in to a bit of a lull in posts and content, so though that this would be a prime time to post up my review of the Blood Angles codex.

Now this won't be as in depth as the guard codex as i will be skimming over a lot of units, namely the ones i do the use and have no intention of using. This will mean that the whole review should be a lot quicker! Well, that's the plan anyway, we'll see if that's holds true.

Ill follow the same plan as I did with the guard codex, and start with the HQ units and move on through troops, elites, fast attack and heavy support, and I'll throw in the transports and flyers at some point. After I have gone through all the units, I will move on to the rest of the book, including warlord traits, stratagems, relics and psychic powers.

I don't know how regularly I will be able to post up the review pages, as they take a while to write each entry and I'm a bit short of time with work and the bairns, but I will try and get at least on post up every week, so getting all the review up will take a while!

The first post, that of the named characters will be up soon!


Friday, 8 June 2018

Eagle Knights Vs Ultramarines 1000pts

This was the last in a run off games that I have had recently. I played this a couple of weeks ago now but due to the new job and all, I have not had time to write it up. 

The game was between the Eagle Knights and a force of Ultramarines, consisting of 2 scout squads, one with sniper rifles and one with bolt pistols and chain swords, 2 bike squads with 4 bikes and an attack bike, a rhine and a whirlwind, all lead by a captain on a bike. The game itself was a bit of a white wash, with the Knights getting firmly beaten yet again. Granted this was due to me making a number of mistakes and forgetting a couple of rules. 

The table and terrain

The Ultramarines deployment

The Eagle Knights Deployment

We played Deadlock with Vanguard Strike Deployment. Now I decided to keep the death guard on the table again, although it was a bit of a gamble as I wanted to go first but we had an equal number of units and my opponent had started deploying first. In the end I managed to win the roll off and get first turn. With this I played Forlorn Fury and charged the Death Company forward ready for a first turn charge!

My cards turn 1 and they were not a good set of cards to pull. I had hopes that I could achieve a few cards first turn but that was not to be.

Turn 1

While I was quite confident of success on turn one, targeting the scouts in the centre and claiming the objective they were sitting on, I failed miserably. Even though the scouts did not have camo cloaks, 4 heavy bolters failed to do any damage to the squad! My opponent passed over 6 4+ saves to keep all of them alive and deny me the option to charge with my death company, as there was no space to place any of my models on the roof of the building. In stead I charged his bikes and Rhino, unfortunately through bad placement I had a thunder hammer on the wrong side of the combat and only had one of the two available to attack the rhino. This one hammer managed to take over half the wounds off the rhino and if I had both of them there then I would have been able to destroy it. As it was I didn't manage to do enough damage to either the bikes or the rhino to destroy either. This meant that in my opponents turn he was able, using the Ultramarine chapter tactic, fall back and fire at the Death Company, wiping them from the board. Although the unit was destroyed, my opponent made a mistake by wiping the unit out with shooting when he had Blood and Guts in his hand!

First turn.

Turn 2

With the failure of the Death Company in turn 1, I tried again to take out the scouts with my assault marines, which had been waiting in reserve. This went a little better, as the heavy bolter were actually able to take out enough to get a couple of assault marines on the roof, although not really enough to do what needed to be done and the unit was not wiped out and instead manage to inflict a number of wounds on the assault marines. This failure to kill of the scouts in one go would come back to bite me some more in the next turn or two. In addition the bikes started to move up the field. I was still struggling for points at this stage, although the only consolation was that my opponent was too.

Turn 2, The melee in the middle continues.

A close up of the melee

Turn 3

The game continued in pretty much the same fashion as previously. The Melee in the middle continued and through attrition the assault marines finally managed to wipe out the scots, but only one assault marine remained. The bikes and Captain had helped by wiping out a couple of marines that were left at the bottom of the building and it was advantageous that bikes can no longer climb ruins as otherwise they would just have wiped out the unit. At this point the game was really up and I was just trying to cause as much damage as I possibly could and try and score some points for the 40k ladder that the club was running.

Turn 4

Turn 4 and the game was all but finished. The bikes had moved on from the centre of the board and had converged on the last stand of the Knights. By this point I had a 5 man tactical squad, a 5 man devastator squad, Captain, Lieutenant, Chaplain, a single assault marine and a tactical squad with 1 man in. While my opponent had a rhino, whirlwind, two bike squads, one with 2 bikes and an assault bike and one with 4 bikes and an assault bike, plus the Captain on his bike. Oh and a scout snipe squad, who had taken out the last remnants of a tactical squad in combat. One of the bike squads charged in on the tactical squad to try and take out the squad to get the objective. Some how they manage to survive and kept hold of the objective, denying my opponent a point.


Turn 5

I was surprised that the game had gone this far. At this point I really just was fighting for survival and decided to throw every thing in to combat to stop the Ultramarines claiming the objective and so the devastators, captain and lieutenant charged in to combat. The assault marine and chaplain just stayed in the centre and just hung out to stop me getting tabled! The ultramarine decided to withdraw from combat and unload into all the remaining Knights. At this point the bikes had taken a bit of a pounding, and only 4 bikes and an attack bike remained, although with twin bolter in rapid fire range, they did take quite a few casualties.

After the movement phase of the Ultramarines turn 5

End Game

Well at the end of turn 5 we didn't bother rolling to see if the game continued. There was no doubt that the Knights had suffered another crushing defeat, although I cant remember of the top of my head what the final score was but I think it was something like 6 or 7 to 1 in favour of the boys in blue. I think that there was a few lessons learned, the primary one being that I should not split the attacks of the Death Company, either that or I should make sure that the right weapons are in the right place! The cards were not in my favour either this match and I could not achieve enough cards to draw new cards as I was forced to discard a card at the end of every turn and as I could not achieve any cards, I was forced to stick with the ones that I had draw originally, which I really struggled to achieve. 

More lessons learned this game, although with starting work, I don't know when I will get another game in to put some of these lessons in to practice.

Friday, 1 June 2018

So this just happened........

The other day I had a quick visit from a friend, who called round to drop off some items that will form part of a trade. When I get my copy of Forgebane, the necron half of the box will be going back the other way and will form my half of the trade but in the mean time, I have already received this lot;



In there are 3 attack bikes, 11 normal bikes (9 from various DV sets), a squad of Skitarii and a Tech Preist Dominus. 

The three attack bikes, which will join the Dark Guardians, are complete, the extra bits are in the bag at the back. They are all going to be armed with multimelta's, as I think I have enough anti-infantary firepower but lack some longer ranged anti-armour firepower, plus they didn't come with heavy bolters, just multimelta's, which did make the decision a bit easier.

The bulk of the bikes, with 2 sergeants, 2 plasma and 3 normal bikers. 

Two more bikes, still to be built, one with plasma and one with bolt pistol. The chances are one of these will be converted to a librarian model, to give me some psychic powers and denials. 

The last two bikes and these are standard bikes from the MPPK bikes. These will be recieving a bit of an upgrade to make them in to an apothecary and champion, meaning the bikes need to be equipped with plasma talons rather than bolters. 

The sprues in the picture belong to the skitarii (below) and a tech priest Dominus, both from forgebane. These will be going in to storage for a while, until I get my box set and then I can start to figure out a force. I will probably get the AdMech codex at some point, so that I can field these guys properly but for the moment, they will be well down the list of builds. 


So there you have it, my latest addition to the pile of unpainted plastic. I have, as I always do, grand plans for this lot but it could be a while before they see fruition.