Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Heart of Fire!

So, as I mentioned last week, this past weekend was TSHFT, The Seattle Heart of Fire Tournament. I finally managed to attend for the first time since 2007. I took my DaemonKin, which I've been running as my competitive list since I first took them to a tournament as a goofy fun list since I didn't know the power level at that store and then accidentally the whole thing. I've got them fairly well tuned at this point, I think, tho I am running a few things (like the Biker Lord with the Axe of Ruin) just for fun and/or because I just got that BloodThirster painted. The quick version is that I had 6 really fun games and a great time over the weekend.  Read on for more detail:
Just as a reminder, this was the list I was running:
195/195 - Lord, Juggernaut, Gorethirster, Power Sword, 4++, Meltabombs (Warlord)
155/350 - Lord, Bike, Axe of Ruin
160/510 - 2x8 Bloodletters
064/574 - 2x1 Chaos Spawn
390/964 - 3 MaulerFiends
100/1064 - Void Shield Generator, 2 extra Shields

CSM Allied Detachment
170/1234 - Chaos Lord, Mark of Khorne, Juggernaut, Axe of Blind Fury, 4++
050/1284 - 10 Culties

111/1395 - 3 Bikers, 2xMelta, Combi-Melta, Meltabombs
101/1496 - 3 Bikers, 2xMelta, Meltabombs
160/1656 - 2x5 Flesh Hounds
192/1848 - 12 Flesh Hounds

DK JuggerLord went with the big Pack of Hounds, CSM JuggerLord went with one of the little ones. Bike Lord went in the Squad without the Combi-Melta. The Blood Letters came in via Deep Strike every time, and the other Hound Pack usually Outflanked, while the Culties and sometimes the Spawn walked on from Reserves.
Game 1 (The only one I remembered to take even a single picture of)
Modified Emperor's Will, Dawn of War (These are all the ITC scenarios, just run in order from 1-6)
Against Jason from FLG and his White Scars Battle Company+Inquisitor

This was a pretty easy game, despite a bit of a rough start because his Servo Skulls and Dawn of War Deployment meant I couldn't screen the whole Void Shield area and he got to drop some Melta in there and take it down right off the bat. He was really heavy on Grav other than that, tho, and much of my Army is more or less immune to Grav. I was able to pretty much clear the flank his Objective was on, and he could have Contested mine if the Game had gone on, but I had his solidly and was up on the Maelstrom. 10-1 Win.

Game 2
Modified Relic, Hammer and Anvil
Against Josh with Gallant Lance, SkyHammer, and White Scars DevCents

I knew this one was going to be rough. DK have trouble dealing with Super-Heavies and things that are better in CC than them, and this was both. I then compounded the issue by taking the first Turn and Scouting forward to try to cover the Void Shield area and grab the Relic right off the bat. I didn't get my screening quite right and he was still able to drop SkyHammer Multi-Meltas inside the Shield and again pop it right away. That let him take out one MaulerFiend and Immobilize another, and also gave him easy Charges with two of his Knights. Things just went downhill from there. 0-11 Loss.

Despite the crushing loss, this game was a blast, and we had a great time joking around, most notably about the possibility of doing a Slaaneshi KDK Counts-As, The Porn Daemonkin ;)

Game 3
Modified Purge the Alien, Vanguard Strike
Against the French Overlord with a Riptide Wing, Optimized Stealth Cadre and a CAD with a bunch of FW stuff.

Another I knew was going to be rough. The only time I've beaten Jeremy was in a wacky scenario some TO came up with years ago and he didn't read the victory conditions right. Vanguard Strike meant that he had plenty of room for me to get across, and Purge meant that he could be pretty OK with ceding Board Control to take advantage of all that room. That's pretty much how it worked out in the end, but it was much closer than the final score would indicate. If I hadn't screwed up and moved too many Units out of my DZ on Turn 1, I would have won Maelstrom, and I was only a couple of KP behind, with a number of Units very close to going, including his Warlord's. 0-10 Loss. EDIT: I got caught up in habit there. I did manage to tie the Maelstrom, so it was actually only a 0-6 Loss.

Game 4
Modified Scouring, Hammer and Anvil
Against Scott with an Ultramarines Drop List, including SkyHammer

I had been worried about this Scenario, since I've got 7 FA Choices, and Hammer and Anvil can be a lot of ground to cover. As it played out, tho he was again overloaded on Grav, and this time didn't have Servo Skulls to keep me from fully screening the Shield Zone. He then made a crucial mistake as a Drop Player and spread his stuff out along the board, and I was able to just go to town, including a fairly ludicrous multiple combat that had my Warlord and a dozen Hounds chewing through half a dozen SM Units. 11-1 Win.

So I ended Day 1 at 50/50, not bad by any means, but leaving me needing to win both my Games on Day 2 to make my goal of a 4-2 record. My back was also killing me, from leaning over to move all those Flesh Hounds back and forth across the middle of the board all the time. (Shout-out to my Opponents, especially in my later Games, for helping me with movement on the far side of the table!) That said, I slept fairly well, and was surprisingly non-hungover.

 photo DSCN1808_zps657115c1.jpg

Game 5
Modified Big Guns Never Tire, Vanguard Strike
Against Bronson aka The Mediocre Gamer, with a War Convocation, Inquisitor, and White Scars Drop Pods

Not a whole lot to this one. There wasn't actually even much damage done on either side. Vanguard Strike and a chunk of Impassable Terrain outside my DZ let me get the Shield screened, so he dropped his Pods very conservatively, and I was able to gain overwhelming Board Control, despite his advantage in Points for killing off HS Units. 10-0 Win.

Game 6
Modified Crusade, Dawn of War
Against Denny with a drop List featuring Blood Angels, Skitarii, and White Scars Allies (basically for DevCents)

I'd played Denny before, with my Space Wolves, so I knew his list reasonably well, and it was also fairly similar in overall effect to the other Marine Lists I'd faced over the weekend. He put up a damn good fight, and there was barely anything left on the board on either side by the end, but once again my Army is so resilient to Grav that he couldn't stop me from making it across the board and just smashing up pretty much everything and jumping on 3 of the 4 Objectives. 10-1 Win, leaving me at 42/66 possible Battle Points for the weekend, and hitting my goal of going 4-2 perfectly.

The best bit came after, tho, during the awards ceremony. I'm not sure exactly how the Points were calculated, but I ended up winning Favorite Opponent, which I personally value the most of any award given out at these things! I'm still grinning from that :D

When the stats were eventually posted the next day, I found myself at 7th in Battle Points, and 6th overall, between my Sportsmanship Points and about 20 Points more than I was expecting on my Painting. Out of a field of 46 that included several top tier Players (at least a few from the top 25 of the ITC, regulars at the ATC, that sort of thing), I'm very pleased with that showing. Especially considering my two losses came at the hands of two of those top Players, and one of them was a horrible Army matchup for me and the other was very close.

I'm now really considering putting together and refining a Battle Company, War Convocation, or TauCron List, and putting in the practice to try to really go for the top spot at some of the harder Tournaments in the area. We've got Storm of Souls coming up in April, another Guardian Cup some time this summer, I think, and the summer TSHFT as well. Maybe some stuff up on BC too, if I get around to getting my passport renewed.


  1. Well done my friend, well done! I wasn't there to witness your crowning as favored opponent but it sure isn't hard to guess why. Way to go, seriously. While I'm not one to encourage you to go down the cheddar boulevard, I DO think you could do very well with it. Between Paint, sportmanship and your ability as a general, I'd love to see a guy like you get rewarded with the top spot!

    1. Thanks! I'm not actually entirely certain I want to go all the way with that either, but honestly, when you're playing against other people who are into competing at that same level, when everyone's on the same page, I'm pretty sure it can be just as fun as keeping it casual. That's definitely the main point. If it gets to where I'm not having fun with it, that's the time to head back to PorchHammer and just throw dice and hang out with folks for a while.

  2. Well done my friend, well done! I wasn't there to witness your crowning as favored opponent but it sure isn't hard to guess why. Way to go, seriously. While I'm not one to encourage you to go down the cheddar boulevard, I DO think you could do very well with it. Between Paint, sportmanship and your ability as a general, I'd love to see a guy like you get rewarded with the top spot!

  3. Grats on the award, man, and glad you had a blast with things. I feel like you'd benefit from running more Flesh Hounds and fewer Maulerfiends overall, but the Mauler is just such a cool guy that he's hard to give up. :( But it's good the list is working out for you, at least.

    Man, did you play a lot of Space Marines. I think you might've played nearly every Marine player there.

    1. Thanks! Yeah, I'm sure I'd do better with something else in place of the MaulerFiends and the Biker Lord, but they're fun. When I get this Chaos Knight converted up, I might try running it in place of the Fiends.

      And yeah, that was a lot of Marines. I think that was one of the reasons the weekend was kind of reminding me of going to Tournaments back in 3rd ed ;)

  4. Well played, sound like some great games. The scores seemed quite extreme in all the games, either a crushing victory or crushing win.

    1. Thanks! A lot of them were actually closer than the final score would indicate, and I spaced and mis-wrote the score for Game 3 (actually 0-6), but DK do tend to have feast or famine when it comes to their results.

  5. Awesome stuff dude! But PLEASE moar pictures of your fantastic looking armies! I love your conversions and wish to admire them!

    Congrats on the best sporting as well, its not hard to imagine its well deserved based on your blog :)

    1. Thanks! I was originally planning on more fresh pics, but it hit this point where I recognized I was starting to head into a procrastination spiral, and if I waited til I got pics done, it'd never get posted at all.

      I do finally have the table cleared enough, so more photoshoots soon.

    2. Haha I know exactly what you mean!

      Awesome news though, very much looking forward to seeing more of your collection mate.