Monday, May 21, 2012

Alamo 40K Tournament 2012: Tournament Report DAY ONE

Hello all! The dust has settled and everyone is back home after a fantastic weekend of drinking beer, rolling dice and of course drinking more beer. I've said it once and I'll say it again, the Alamo is the most fun you can have at a tournament. This was my third year and it really just gets better each time! If I had a  WFB army I'd go the Alamo Fantasy tournament in October as well.

From a strictly competitive outlook I'd say Alamo is much more relaxed than say Wargames Con or Adepticon. With only 5 games over two days there is a lot of down time to relax and enjoy walking around, talking to people, and the wonderful armies on display. There are definitely people there to win, but on average most people just bring armies that will be fun to play with AND against. Throw in cheap beer and you have a perfect recipe for a lot of very fun games.

MY LIST: Chaos Space Marines (Nurgle)
early stage photo before army was finished :)
Lord; mark of nurgle, wings, melta bomb, daemon weapon
Lord; mark of nurgle, wings, melta bomb, daemon weapon
Summoned Greater Daemon
Plague Marines*7; champ, pf, melta*2, icon, rhino
Plague Marines*7; champ, pf, melta*2, icon, rhino
Plague Marines*7; champ, combi-melta, plasma*2, icon, rhino, dozer
Summoned Lesser Daemons*7
Possessed Marines*7; icon of nurgle, champion, rhino, ex armor, dozer

~so a pretty boring list I know but there isn't much you can do with Chaos right now, especially if you want to go mon-god list. I began building this army when the current codex came out way back in 2007. I got 1000pts painted for Wargames Con team event last year and wanted to get another 1000pts painted before the new book came out. The Alamo Tournament was the motivation I needed to finish it, and the 5 games played this weekend were the last hurrah if you will. The army will be shelved until the new book is released as it is a fairly boring list to play with.

Like all Nurgle Lists it is very tough against low strength high AP attacks. Its best match ups are going to be static IG armies that shoot more than move. A single Plague Marine can soak up infinite amounts of lasgun, heavy bolter, multi-laser and even auto cannon shots. Tau are also a good match up since everyone is Fearless so they won't be pinned and massed S5 shots don't do much either. Also very elite, low model count armies are a good match since I also don't have many units. I can concentrate my units and don't have to spread out. However I've not faced Paladins yet... can't imagine much is GOOD against those.

Bad match ups include Dark Eldar who generally have lots of low AP shooting and poisoned weapons which both negate the benefits of being a Plague Marine. Also any army that is fast with lots of units will just run circles around my Rhinos. Hoard armies are also difficult for Nurgle to fight because I just don't have the bodies to contend to high rates of long range shooting to thin them out. If they can tie up the majority of my units then they are free to maneuver around to objectives. 

Senario: Beachhead
Objective: Sieze Ground
Deployment: Pitched Battle
Secondary Objective: Control More Table Quarters
Opponent: James Sanchez (Kingsville, TX)
Opponent's Army List: Salamanders First Company (counts as Deathwing)
James had an all Salamanders terminator army but used the Deathwing codex to represent the First Company. His army consisted of Chapter Master Tushan (counts as Belial), terminator chaplain, 6 scoring Deathwing Squad~three with cyclones, 3 with heavy flamers (awesome), none of which had more than 2 or three thunder hammers and one of which was all lightning claws, a Land Speeder Typhoon, and a 7th terminator unit with all thunder hammers but was an elites choice.

I really wish I had an entire army pic because he had a really cool transport board and all his models looked great. Alas at 9 in the morning I was not on the ball... :/ 

~List vs List I thought this would be a bad match up for my death guard. I generally do very well against mass small arms fire but poorly against dedicated assault armies, especially ones who don't care about my T5 and FNP!

My possessed rolled a 1 for their possession so they had scout in a game against an all Deepstriking terminator army, and to make matters worse, turn one he gets 4 out of 4 direct hits with his terminator units. So I see his command squad (5 twin lightning claw termis with apothecary, +1attack banner, and two HQ) within range of both Lords. I'd rather not face 25 reroll to hit AND wound attacks charging me, so I take a chance and alpha strike that unit! 

Result~one Lord murders his Chaplain, the other Lord swings at the unit but rolls a one for the daemon weapon and takes a wound. My Plague Marines get murdered to the man by his terminators. When the dust clears I loose combat by four, having to take two saves on each Lord. The Lord who attacked the Chaplain passes both saves while the one who took a wound from his Daemon Weapon rolls snake eyes and dies... no one even allocated a single attack against him that combat and he died! OUCH

However, like I often say, Warhammer has a way of evening out with the rolling and the game was far from over. The next turn two more units drop in with direct hits but they have Heavy Flamers so not much happens. In my turn two Oblits drop in and get 7 plasma cannon his KILLING an entire terminator unit! 

The next turn two more Oblitz drop in and shoot two plasma cannons but both over heat and one takes a wound! To make matters worse, the other two Oblitz shoot plasma cannons which both scatter into the first unit, killing an entire Oblit leaving me with one with one wound... Lets recap: one turn I shoot two plasma cannons and kill 5 Terminators, the next turn I shoot 4 plasma cannons resulting in 3 wounds to a single Oblit squad and no dead terminators! Sometime this game is just hilarious!

Even with rolling Scout my possessed go on to kill about 8 or 9 terminators.

Lesser Daemons drop in and assault Tushan (Belial) and do 7 wounds (out of 21 attacks), Tushan rolls three ones and DIES!

Nurgle Victory: 20/20
~this was a great first round for me! The dice were just hilarious from start to finish, with neither of us getting particularly good rolls but making the opponent take saves and roll horribly. James also has just moved to Austin so I expect to see him around at Dragon's Layer and he will make an excellent addition to the Austin gaming scene (rematch soon I hope).
I also gave James my 'Best Game' vote and he went on to place in Davy Crocket Award (Best Sportsman)!

Senario: Forward Post
Objective: Capture and Control
Deployment: Spearhead
Secondary Objective: player with the most units outside both deployment zones 
Opponent: Kenny Hill (Dallas, TX)
Opponent's Army List: Tyranids!
Swarm Lord, two Tyrant Guard, Winged Tyrand w/ hive commander, three Trygon Primes, Tervigon, obligatory 10 Gaunts, big brood of Genestealers w/ brood lord. I think that was it.

 ~Kenny and I played against each other last year, and although both years he brought his Nids, he was able to construct a vastly different army. People often rag on Nids for not being a "good" army but there are so many different ways to play them, all of which are fun! However, I totally dicked him over last year when I messed up on a rule so I was in a mood this year to play as friendly as possible to make up for probably getting a "bad game" vote from him the year before.

This time my Possessed rolled a 2 for their Possession and got Furious Charge, which I figured would go a long way against his Monstrous Creatures. He made me go first and then held everything in reserve. I got two free turns of movement, sending the Plasma squad and the Possessed towards his objective in the corner while hanging back with the two Melta squads and two Lords on my own Objective. 

Because of Hive Commander on both the Swarm Lord and Tyrant all his reserves showed up on a 2+ turn 2. He dropped the three Trygons and the Flying Tyrant behind my Rhinos and shot a bunch of S5 shots opening them them up. He also outflanked the Tervigon seen above.

Due to some bad rolls on my part and being generally surprised by 4 Monstrous Creatures now near my objective all my units were wiped out in just a few rounds of combat. All Kenny had to do was poop some more Gaunts and he claimed my objective.

On his own objective he had 10 Gaunts, the Genestealers and Swarm Lord with Body Guard. With no shooting at all my Rhino drove up and then both Oblit units dropped in with Heavy Flamers killing all the Guants and most of the Stealers. My Possessed charged the Swarm Lord and the Greater Daemon went into the Stealers. 

When the dust settled I had a Rhino with Plague Marines sporting a single Plasma gun on his objective with the Swarm Lord contesting with a single wound left. All I needed was the game to go to 6 turns and I'd have a reasonable chance of tying the game if my plasma gun aimed squarely at a single wound model without an invulnerable save. Alas the game ended on turn 5 with no chance to shoot the Swarm Lord.

Nurgle Loss: 4/20
~this was a fun game and I always like playing against Nids. I was also happy that I got to make up for last year by advising Kenny to assault my Greater Daemon... "no" he says, "we'll just tie combat and I won't be able to move and contest the objective". I reply "do a single wound and I'm dead. The Summoned Greater Daemon is NOT eternal warrior". "REALY?!?!"

Senario: Kill Them... Kill Them All!!
Objective: Annihilation
Deployment: Dawn of War
Secondary Objective: Reduce all enemy units to 50% or less, damage all vehicles
Opponent: John Wayne
Opponent's Army List: Grey Knights (but not in a bad way)
Inquisitor Cotiez, another Inquisitor, two Land Raider Crusaders filled with Deathcult Assassins, Crusaders, and melta guns, a Techmarine, two Chimeras, one with Psychers and Plasma Cannon servitors, the other with just scoring henchmen, a razorback with henchmen, and a duel S8 auto cannon Dreadnought. So not REALLY Grey Knights

~JW is the son of one of the guys who plays locally in Austin CrazyRedPretorian. He was using a mix of models from several of his dad's armies to make an all Henchmen Grey Knight list. This was an excellent match round 3 after drinking all day long. NTM about 2 minutes before pairings were posted I was forced to chug a Smirnov Ice blah :P

This was straight up a good fight. JW is a very polite kid and I was joking around with him the whole time. He gave me some of his cotton candy and I bought him a coke. When he seized the initiative on me he pushed the Big Red Easy Button seen above left hand corner. Which when you push it says out loud (in a very mocking tone by the way) "that was easy"! lol

Even though JW is like only 13 years old I still only managed to beat him by a single KP on the bottom of the last turn by shooting a melta gun at his Techmarine! This turned out the be the closest game of the tournament for me and an excellent way to finish the first day of Alamo.

Nurgle Victory: 16/20

Considering I took this army as a laugh and last hurrah before the new Codex comes in a few months I finished the first day with 40/60 points. Considering my goal was to win 3 game all weekend I was very proud of my first day showing. Luck with rolls and good match ups of course played it's part. 

Tune in later for the second day report and the dramatic awards ceremony!
Thanks for reading!

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