Nurgle Sorcerer

February 14th, 2013

Alright, I thought I would toss out a quick little look at an HQ choice that I have come to love in the Chaos Space Marine (CSM) codex.  So to start, it isn’t a cheap option, but it seems that 200 points or so is about the norm for a lot of HQ choices. This particular choice I have been enjoying and thought I would share.  So first I will state that this is a Nurgle Sorcerer, as I play Death Guard and have for a few renditions of the CSM.  I wouldn’t have thought about the unit too much but I purchased the Forge World Necrosis Model (featured in the picture to the left) and I love it too much not to put out.  That being said, let me detail out how I have been running mine.

My biggest problem with the Librarian/Sorcerer options for the Marine Codices (of which CSM essentially is) is the 2 wounds, meaning they are something you worry about getting knocked out too quickly to justify putting points into.   This brings about one of my favorite finds for the Sorcerer entry in the CSM Codex, and that is the fact that the Sorcerer can take Chaos rewards.  More specifically for this issue is that a Sorcerer can take a Palanquin, granting it +2 wounds and +1 attack and making it very bulky.  So now we are looking at a model with four wounds and four attacks base (2 base+1 for palanquin+1 for bolt pistol/Force weapon).  This is not only a survivable model, it is a somewhat formidable close combat model.  Add in that it has the Very Bulky rule, meaning it takes up 3 slots in a transport, but can still ride in that Rhino fitted out with your sacred number of 7 Death Guard.  This allows for a versatility for a Sorcerer as to where you put him.  Personally I have been adding him in with Typhus and 6 other Terminators, though recently I have been debating splitting him off and sticking him in a fearless Death Guard Squad to add in another threat.

So, we have added in the Palanquin to give it wounds and attacks, now toss in a Sigil of Corruption to give it a 4++ invul save.  You are planning on spending some points on this guy to start with, especially when you have dropped for the palanquin, you might as well jump in a bit more to make him 3+/4++.  I think for any HQ choice in this codex you will spend the points to give him the 4++ save unless you are planning on keeping him back in a more defensive role, something I think is a waste of a choice that you have given the palanquin.

Alright, we have a durable unit, now you must look at function.  Two things come up here for me, first is how cheap it is to make the sorcerer a mastery level 3 psyker.  For the same cost as making a regular Space Marine Librarian an Epistolary (master level 2) you get your character a full level higher (I say this with full expectations of this changing as Space Marine Codices released).  Since I am focusing on this guy being more Close Combat already, I think you focus mostly on Biomancy after your first Nurgle power.   The other piece of wargear that is too good not to take for a sorcerer is the Spell Familiar.  In a world where there are Runes of Warding and Shadows in the Warp, the ability to re-roll your failed psyker tests is a must have!

That is essentially the way I take it.  I realize I didn’t mention the Mark of Nurgle, making him T5 and thus meaning there is little that will double him out and meaning he isn’t the easiest model to wound for a normal character, but I did mention that he was a Nurgle Sorcerer from the start.  The last little bit that is a take it or leave it is the Gift of Mutation.  I like the ability to roll on the chart.  This is a 50/50 thing as only about half of the boons will really help you, so I would say only take this bonus if you have the extra points.

I am not saying this is the top choice, or that you want to spend a little over 200 points for this model, but if you play Chaos, and in particular Nurgle based armies, then I would say give this bad boy a try.   Psykers are fun in 6th ed, the versatility of rolling on the different charts can add to a game.  Besides, a 5 wound mastery level 3 model with life leach to regain wounds is just fun to play around with (as I got in one game rolling the boon to give me a bonus wound off the start).  I would also suggest using the force weapon as a force ax, that bonus strength and AP2 is worth the reduction in the initiative as this makes him even formidable against other HQ choices.

Close Games

February 5th, 2013

First off, I thought I would try to jump back on and put something up here.  I know it has been an extremely long time since I put fingers to keyboard to share with you guys my thoughts on this game we all love.  I will endeavor to put something up from time to time and I am sure hoping that happens to be a bit more regular than I had previously (I know, hard to not fail at that one).  On to the point…


Matched up in the Big Game

For those of you into American Football, you probably watched or at least had some inclination of what was going on this February the 3rd down in New Orleans.  For those who don’t know what was going on, Super Bowl XLVII (gotta love those Roman Numerals!) took place pitting the San Francisco 49ers against the Baltimore Ravens.  Watching the game most would have called it after the first half, but luckily for those of us who wanted more to see a good game than to see a particular team take the title of “World Champion of Football” we saw a strong showing from the 49ers in the second half.   Despite their efforts, alas it was not to be their year and the Ravens would manage to hold on to win the game.

I know, “Great Bill what the heck does this have to do with 40k?”

Though down by a considerable amount going into the half, the 49ers came back to put up a fight and give a decent showing.  This made me think about the importance of sticking it out to show your opponent a good fight, and about how much more enjoyable it can be to play in those nail biting, close battles.  

Don’t give up.  I have seen many games and even played in several where after the first couple of turns it looked as if one side would win without difficulty.  Some react to this by giving up, either they throw in the towel, shake hands and say good game, or they play out the game half-heartedly, barely putting up a fight or thinking through their moves.  Now, there are times to call a game and walk away, mostly when time is of the essence or another game can be gotten in, but I think this diminishes the fun of the game.  I say stick it out, show your opponent that there is fight left in you and challenge yourself to see what you can do when facing an adverse situation in the game.

In a competitive setting not quitting in the middle of a game is incredibly important.  Despite how the game is going for you, your results can effect the placement for other players in the tournament.  It is devastating to loose out on a prize because someone forfeited the game, giving max battle points to their opponent.  It is part, or at least should be, of the social contract in tournaments not to throw a game or give your opponent an unfair advantage.  By dropping out of a game that is going adversely you immediately boost your opponents results.  As long as you don’t get tabled, it is possible to deny your opponent at least one objective or kill point, depending on the mission and the tournament scoring system.  Those few points could be the difference between that person taking top spot and a lesser/lower prize.   I am not trying to say deny them to spite or screw them, but it wouldn’t be fair to grant someone a top spot by tossing in the towel.  Prizes aren’t the only thing that can be at stake.  The performance of each player in every round will impact their match ups for the future games.  By giving up, you may just granted your opponent a top spot in the rankings and given him the a “easier” match up in the next round.  So, though it may seem that calling it in a competitive environment may harmless to give in and end your pain, it may be impacting the overall results of the tournament.

Whether in a tournament or playing a non-competitive game, when things seem dim, there may be light at the end of the tunnel yet.  There is a reason I enjoy objective based games more than kill point missions and that is because even if more of your units are taking damage than your opponents, as long as you are playing the mission, you have a chance.  A particular team game pops into mind when I think of this.  There were hidden/random objectives for each side, meaning that we may have a different mission than our opponent, but we both had the secondary desire to deny our opponent their ability to take the game.  My teammate got pounded turn one while my units were waiting to come in on our first round of fighting (playing daemons in a team game can be bad for the one left on the table).  As the game continued, we were getting slaughtered.  Early on my teammate decided that we could not win and stopped playing the objective.  We ended up loosing that game, but by making some bold moves and keeping the objectives in mind, my units were almost able to deny our opponent the victory in that game and, had my teammate kept his composure and remained focus on our objectives, we may have been able to succeed in that game.  How many times have we been in a game that was decided by some turn of ‘luck’?  How many times did turn six come around to find a complete swing in the game?  A smart or unexpected play in a game can turn the tide and can grasp victory from the jaws of defeat.  Something we almost saw in this Super Bowl game.  See I can tie things in!

Still going on Bill?

Okay, in an attempt at some brevity  (too late for that?) lets move on to the fun aspect.  I don’t know about you, but I find a game far more enjoyable when it is nail biting.  If every move I make matters and I know that any mistake I make will be capitalized on I tend to consider those games far more enjoyable than ones in which I am completely devastating (or being devastated by) my opponent.  Those games that is completely one sided feels wrong for both sides.  The one doing the dominating, unless they are a completely heartless bastard, feels a bit sorry for their opponent’s miss fortunes and the one being destroyed feels like nothing they do is correct and can’t wait until the game is finally done.

What can be done about this?  I am not sure there is truly anything to be done with the exception of seeking to play those of similar skill levels and expectations in the game.  These expectations would include how seriously you are going to take the game and what style of lists you are both bringing.  I try to bring strong lists to each game.  Some fail in that effort, but at least when I begin adding up points I am thinking that it is a list I would be comfortable to bring to a tournament (though I am not looking to play many of them these days).  Part of this could be because of the people I play against tend to think the same, which works out, but I have always found that these sorts of lists give the best options to keep a game close and survive situations where ‘luck’ could be against you.  Think of it as bringing your best options to succeed.  Not saying you need to be WAAC (win at all costs), far from it, I am saying bring a good list to a game against a similarly prepared and skilled player and you will definitely notice an enjoyable game being had by all!

Thanks for listening to my rantings again.  Let us know what you think.

Painting Raven Guard

June 3rd, 2011

So… First, sorry for any who may check this, I am a slacker.  I would like to say that I have been busy, well I have, but that would be a cop out.  The truth is, I haven’t felt any inspiration to write here in a while.  That being said, on to business…

For those of you who listen to us, and really if you are reading this, I am sure you do, you may have heard my experience at the last tournament.  So that experience has brought up a couple things for me.  First off, I knew my army wasn’t the most competitive.  It lacks the ability to deal with some of the more powerful items in the meta (primarily a mass mech army).  This is something I am working on addressing.  I am not 100% sure my scouts will ever be the super competitive force that I would like it to be, but I am looking at options to improve my list.

The second issue is what I am looking to address first.  Loosing a painting prize to someone who doesn’t have a fully painted army has got me thinking about my technique.  First off, the guy who won the painting contest has great skill and technique.  My issue is first with the standard of a painting prize.  Anyone who shows to a tournament without at least 3 colors on their models (in this case, not even primed), should never expect and indeed should never win a painting prize.  If this is the case, let me have a few super well painted, perhaps commission pieces, and the rest of my army primed.  By the previous logic I should win because those models I have painted are top quality.  If you are not forcing your participants to have a fully painted army, then don’t offer a painting prize, or offer that prize to those who have strove to bring a fully painted force.

Alright, that rant out of the way… What does this mean to me?  Well, it has inspired me to work on my raven guard painting.  To this end, I have searched out a few tips to painting black marines.  I am giving up on the badab black overkill paint process.  I started going to more tradition painting.  Painting it black and working on highlights.  Bit by bit I am working on this, it is a lot of work, but I think in the long run it will pay off.   I suppose this is a declaration of my intent to work on my painting skills.  Stay tuned for some pictures.  Anyone with any suggestions or tips, I would love to hear them.

Feel free to email me or post in our forums any comments or suggestions.  I say this  because the comment area of the site tends to be more spam than anything.

Thanks for reading and more importantly listening.

Adepticon 2011

May 4th, 2011

Hey guys, it has been a while since I posted.  I took a short video with my new flip and I thought I would try and post it up here.  I want to say thank you to all who hung out with us and made Adepticon an enjoyable experience for Tor and I.  I know it took me a month to put this up, but I am new to some of this.  I am looking forward to going again, hopefully that will be next year.  Hope you guys enjoy the vids from Adepticon.

HTN/IVC Adepticon

Gaming in Paradise

March 20th, 2011

So… Southern California, land of beaches and sun.  I really can’t complain about living here.  From my condo I am at the beach in 15 minutes, the mountains and snow in a few hours and the desert in a couple of hours.  It is an outdoor person’s dream come true.  How does this translate to a gamer?

Well, it has its perks, but then I do think that all this beauty and outdoor activity affects the gaming atmosphere.  Starting with the cons: there are far too many amazing and rather active options for one to do, consequently many people develop rather non-gamer related hobbies.  It is probably due to this fact that the gaming store option is a bit limited.  I hear stories of some places that have multiple amazing options to game at and are able to travel around depending on the day and the game they wish to get in.  Here there is one local store and another that is in fairly easy drive distance.  No GW presence short of a couple hour drive also puts a damper on some aspects of the hobby.

As I wrote about earlier, the outdoor, active life style can put a damper on the gaming scene.  There aren’t many days when we can’t run outside and do something, so people don’t necessarily develop inside hobbies like gaming.  This creates a limited group, thought I doubt there are tons in many places either.  Due to all this beauty and activity people pay a premium to live.  With rent high, gaming funds are a bit more limited than I would like (who has enough gaming funds though right?).   Our earthquake building codes also prevent us from having one of the greatest stereotypical man-caves, a basement.

Okay, enough complaining… Southern California is beautiful and the temperature is rarely cold enough to prevent spraying or other outdoor hobby work.  I have never had to sacrifice on gaming time in order to shovel the driveway and there has never been weather so severe that I couldn’t make it to the game store.  On days when we are gaming the windows and doors can pretty much always be open to help air out some of that gamer funk that develops when multiple big guys stand around and play games.  Hell, more often than not we need to have the AC or fan on when we are playing games.

Sure, there are locations where gaming is easier, more popular, etc., but would I trade that for where I live?  No.  This is Paradise and as far as a gamer’s paradise, well I suppose that is what you make of it.  Through the podcast I am meeting new people and developing relationships with others both locally and across the world.  I suppose that the gaming scene is really what you make of it.  Sure I am not about to open a game store any time soon (though I wouldn’t necessarily object to that either), but I can work with my group to improve it bit by bit and to develop my own options for playing both in our places and at other locations.  I suppose it is a revelation I have had or a resolution maybe.  I need to develop relationships with more people that play the hobby.  This has started through meeting some of the other podcasters like Carl and Josh (from Life After the Cover Save) and I seek to expand upon this in the near future with other relationships and expanding upon those I have already made.   All in all, I have to save I do so enjoy living and gaming in Paradise.

Raven Guard Bases

January 29th, 2011

Looking over the comment of my last post, I noticed that Physhdude commented that I should make a mold and then cast my bases in Resin.   Well, that was my plan all along and was reaffirmed after cutting out the original ravens out of plasticard.  So, over the last two weeks, since the last post and the last Broadcast, I have been working feverishly on getting my bases ready.  If you follow our Twitter feed then you have probably seen the pics I have been putting up periodically as I take another step in my basing projects.

Now, I am happy to say that I have 32 28mm rounds, 11 40mm round, 4 60mm round and 10 bike bases made up and in various states of readiness. More are on the way as you read this post. Personally, I am loving it. It wasn’t the easiest thing to start with, but once I got the system down, it wasn’t too bad. If you have any desire to work with resin and silicone, I think it is worth the work for the customized look it gives your army. Now, it isn’t the cheapest endeavor, but I doubt it is too much more expensive, if at all from buying bases from an online store. Depending on your hobby skills, these bases may be complex or simple. I kept my bases more along the simple side since I was not convinced that I would be able to handle the more difficult designs and how they would then come out in Resin. Perhaps for one of my other Armies (since I am not thinking of going back someday and making Bases for them) I will design more varied and complex designs for the bases.

I apologize for the grainy images, they were from my phone.  I will try to upload replacements from my main camera.  Here are some in various stages.

Basing Take One

January 8th, 2011

So, I have been working feverishly on the Raven Guard, but there is one aspect that I have been stalling on.  Okay, more than one, but the one I was thinking of on this occasion is the bases for the army.  Having little armor, the basing will be prevalent and numerous.   So the plan was and still is to do the basing featuring a raven in the middle of the base.  I was originally thinking to have them featured on a tiled base, but I am not sure I am going to be able to pull that off.  I am going to attempt this sand and Raven base.  Well, here is the first attempt:

A pretty simple set up.  Using plasticard, I cut a raven our after tracing the Raven on from a Transfer Sheet.  Cutting the Raven out wasn’t overly easy.  It didn’t turn out perfect, but I plan on doing a few more so if I do cast these they will be in sets of five or so.   I then took some modeling sand and sprinkled it onto super glue.  Unfortunately when cutting out the Raven, the plasticard broke and I had to go back and re-craft a new talon.

On to more basing.  I think I will go to the Terminator then Dread sizes before coming back to the infantry.

Choosing a Chapter

January 7th, 2011

So I have played 40k for quite some time.  When I initially got into the game, Tor showed me a bunch of those pamphlets that GW used to hand out to get people amped on different armies.  I looked through them and had Tor tell me about the different options.  At that point the Xenos really didn’t click with me, and at that point the idea of playing something evil didn’t sit well with me.  So what did that leave me?  IG or Space Marines.  Well something else about me- I don’t like to follow the same path as everyone else.  Once I discovered that the Space Marines were the most popular army in the game, I moved on and dove in to the Imperial Guard.  Truthfully, I wasn’t very disappointed.  These were the everyday guy that served as best they could despite the considerable risk that he was in.  These guys had the coolest tanks and could field a withering array of heavy weapons.  At that point there wasn’t a hugely in depth look at game play or rules, just a desire to play and picking an army.  So… there is the background, I chose NOT to play Space Marines.  So, here I am now, fourteen years later and what am I working on building up?  Oh yeah… Space marines.

So, why change my mind after so long?  Well, after building a mean as hell IG list, then a mean as hell Chaos list, or perhaps vice versa, I noticed that people were not quite as enthusiastic about playing against me as I would have liked.  It also seemed that against most local players my armies did a decent number on them.  I am not tooting my own horn, but a do consider myself a slightly above average General.  I do not play in a lot of Tourneys due to work conflicts, and having played in a GT last year, I learned that I was better than half, but definitely not as good as some.

Back to the point (see I veer off course even in writing)… I wanted a challenge and I wanted some more versatility in my army.  My IG I play pretty much one way, my Chaos I definitely play one way, I wanted something that I could diversify.  At this point, Dawson had been using his Space Marines to go across a few different codices and though I didn’t set out to be able to do this, the option or opportunity to grow a Force that could be whatever I Wanted, whenever I wanted, really appealed to me.  Also, Tor had discovered a love for his Bike list and having seen it in action and looked over the unit in the book, I must say I liked the idea myself.  So, Space Marines were no longer repulsive to me at this point, but I had not necessarily made that my choice.  So… back to it… why Space Marines?

I did mention that I like to do things that are off the beaten path right?  Well I had said for a long time that something I wanted to do is build an all scout army.   Why that?  Well, scouts used to be better, but in the current rendition, they are still no slouches.  Besides, when was the last time you saw scouts on the table?  For me it had been a long time and if I did, it was to see a small sniper squad.  So, here I was, looking for a new Army and realizing that I had wanted to build a scout army for probably ten years now.  There it was,  I could achieve a long time goal and start that new army that would be a bit more fun and a bit more friendly.

Army= Chosen… Theme=Chosen… Chapter=?  So here I was, I wanted scouts that is all I truly knew.  What chapter to use then?  I started looking around, searching on the internet, looking through the Space Marine Codex, and thinking back to books I read and listened to.  Finally somethings all clicked into place.  Raven Guard.  I had bought the Kavordyae and Raven Guard upgrade pack at Forge World when I was in England only a month or two before and the Raven Guard makes extensive use of Scouts.  It was a perfect match.  I started reading everything I could about the Raven Guard.  Soon I was hooked.  A chapter that emphasized that which I was looking for, was one of the original Legions, Primarch wasn’t necessarily dead, had a color scheme I wouldn’t hate painting, and with all that, I was in!

Now I find myself expanding my Raven Guard.  Before my scouts are fully painted and ready, I look to the next option.  The next thing the Raven Guard will be.  But that will be a future post…


January 7th, 2011

New Years has come and with a desire to be a bit more open and active I have decided to work on an ongoing blog.  Here I will be working on posting some of my model conversions, paintings and perhaps even some of the my random fictional musings.  We will see what it all comes to end the end.  I am looking forward to exploring this venue with you, originally my listeners, and now, my readers.