Attack of #HobbyADD – Infinity, Malifaux and 40k in between…

Well, as always, I am suffering from #HobbyADD, but at the moment I think its a particularly advanced case! I’ve almost completed my #WAACPainting entry – the models are done – I just need some decent photos for an entry.  I’m looking a knocking up a quick display board to take the photos on. So, current projects (in no particular order)!

1)  Infinity Nomads!  I’m very excited about Infinity!  It looks like an amazing system, and the skirmish nature means I don’t need to assemble and paint huge numbers.  Plus nuns with guns – my battle sisters can stride onto a new battlefield.  I think I can hold off until Ice Storm though!

2)  Malifaux I have a Lady Justice crew half assembled (I still need to put the Death Marshalls together.  Interesting system with the card deck, and fascinating fluff and gorgeous models.  Only problem is that I keep eying up Viktoria’s crew and Gremlins….. Hopefully I can stick to my guns (of justice!)

3) 40K – Sisters of Battle I need to paint about 2 models to “finish” my Order of the Argent Shroud, and about 6 models to “finish” my Order of the Verdant Garden.  So close….

4) 40K – Imperial Fists This is my current “Churn em out army”.  I do like the Sons of Dorn, and these will probably be my standard go to 40k army for a while.  Assault terminators and forge world pads on the way to bolster a Lysander charge 🙂

5) 40K – Pirate Orks Pirate orks.   What more can I say?  I have a fair few Orks from Assault on Black Reach, and Stormclaw may be lurking for an upcoming birthday.  I’ve also got RTB02 ready to be repainted and take the field.  Add some Flash Gitz, and Cap’n Kipp’s Freebootaz could be ready to go!  Its a heck of a lot of models though, so I may end up holding off here.

6) 40K – Dark Craftworld Dark Eldar I have a reasonably DE force in need of some TLC.  I’m really tempted to reorganise it as a fallen craft world and paint it in aspect colours – Striking Scorpion green for Incubi, blaster wielding kabalites as fire dragons, kabalites as Dire Avenger blues, Wyches in howling banshee bone and so on.

7) Ax Faction minis for fun I’m looking at using some of these as Inquisition forces too, so not purely just for fun.  Cracking sculpts on these.

8) 40K – Fallen Angels This army has been lurking for ages and been bolstered by the DV set.  Totally unpainted for over 7 years….. I really should at least prime them!!!

9) 40K – RTB01 Crimson Fists Army Ah, my beloved Crimson Fists!  Painstakingly gathered from eBay to replace an army that got lost on a train years ago.  The plan is to recreate the classic Rogue Trader front cover.  Navy primer is ready to go!

10) 40K – Ultramarines More marines!  I actually have a fairly decent collection of ultramarines, some primed, some badly painted.  I’m just missing a HQ force here really!  Ironclad dreadnoughts and bikers recently added to the increasing forces.   I now have a complete enough force not to worry about these!  Counting Ultramarines as done!

11) 40K – Crimson Slaughter I have a reasonably solid force of CSMs in red and gold, perfect for the role of Crimson Slaughter.  With the addition of the Crimson Slaughter specific models from the DV set, this would be a great little force (possibly in need of a bastion or helturkey for anti air).  Just the CSMs from DV to paint here, though a fair few khorne beserkers need some finishing too.

12)  X-Wing Not started here, but a good guy locally loves it, and wants to play.  I love Star Wars, so I suspect mistakes will be made here 😉

13)  Armada If I like Star Wars star fighters, running a fleet as an admiral????  Yeah, this is happening.

14) DnD 5e Absolutely love everything I’ve seen for this so far!  Just wish digital versions of the core books were coming out as space is an issue.

15) 40K – Space Wolves My first 40K force back in the 80s!  The storm claw set has sucked me back in.  I’m not a huge fan of a lot of the recent vehicles, but the current character modelling is amazing.  Definitely to be painted in grey instead of the rubbish modern light blue though.  Will probably just be an allies force rather than a full blown 1850pts army.

16)  40K – Blood Angels Really struggling for enthusiasm here!  I have some really quite nice chapter leaders painted up, and some gorgeous terminators from Space Hulk to paint.  I have primed basic troops, and unbuilt death company and sanguinary guard.  Just not feeling too enthused, particularly without a current codex.

17) 40K – Silver Skulls Loads of unbuilt models for this, and they fit with my long term plans of having a range of silver armies sharing some vehicles with magnetised logos with my Order of the Argent Shroud and Grey Knights.  Need to work out the skulls for the shoulders and a quick effective paint scheme here!

18)  40K – Eldar Loads of unpainted Eldar, and loads of painted ones! Recently bolsters by  Eldrad, a new Avatar and some warlocks.  I need to sort out some effective fighting forces here – I think painting the remaining ones is quite low down the list.  Really tempted to add more wraith warriors at all levels though ….

19)  40K – Tau My Tau are pretty much done with a reasonable force.  There are a couple of options half painted that I’d like to finish off, and perhaps add some broadsides and riptides, but generally these are pretty low on the list as they have a fully painted force!  Ticking these off the list as have a sorted out painted playable army matching all my main criteria.  Not ideal, as could do with slightly different options, but cool.

20)  40K – Grey Knights! New codex due out, decent force already, and only a couple of things needed to be finished or assembled to finish them off!  Also awesome with the new psychic phase.  These guys may well be seeing the table again soon.  Dreadknight is tempting me!

21) 40K – Imperial Guard Valhallans Pretty much sorted out and ready to go!  Not great paint jobs, but OK enough to get by.  some basing of heavy weapons needed here.

22) 40K – Imperial Guard Cadians Ouch.  Loads of men, not much paint, and pretty much every heavy weapons squad needs to be rebased.  Lots and lots of work, not much enthusiasm at present 🙁

23) 40K – Legion of the Damned I have 15 Legion to be painted to use as an allied force to other Imperial types.  Struggling to get enthused though.

24) 40K – Deathwatch I have a 10 man squad with custom pads (both DW and a range of chapters), heads, guns, all ready to be assembled!  Must get around to building and painting these.  Very excited with my Inquistions types.

25) 40K – Inquisition I have a load of models from a range of manufacturers to put together as my Inquistion force.  Female paladins as crusaders, floating psykers, daemonhosts, the lot!  Very cool and good allies for almost all the other Imperial forces.  Quite excited, but as I haven’t started they are quite low down the list.

26)  40K – Tyranids I’d love to get this army finished to at least 1850 points!  They look gorgeous, and are easy to do.  I’m struggling motivation wise here as I basically need to buy a fresh army to make them playable with tervigons, more termagants and flying MCs.  I have genestealers aplenty to paint.  Hmm.

27) 40K – Necrons I have a fully painted army of these bad boys – rubbish in the current game, but fully painted and ready to go.  w00t!!!!  Could do with some newer models, but not loving the new fluff anyway. Counting these as done for now!  I have a complete playable and painted army all sorted out.  Not great, but done!

28) 40K – Militarum Tempestus I have a reasonable number of Karskrin Stormtrooper squads here.  No new stormtroopers, but enough to work well with inquisition or guard voices quite effectively!  None really painted, boo hiss!

29)  Scenary! I have a huge amount of scenery to assemble and/or paint.  From an Imperial City to Altars of Chaos, it’d look amazing on my battle board.  As it doesn’t affect my actual games too much though, difficult to find the time!

Sooo, 29 reasonably sized projects, and possibly a few more kickstarter bits to go too.  Ouch!  #HobbyADD indeed!

Warhammer 40K model options … Without going to Games Workshop

Let me start by saying I love Warhammer 40K.  I love the universe, the Black Library books and authors are fantastic, and the game is generally fun, interesting, and has evolved in interesting ways (even if there are enough quibbles with the rule set to start a fresh Horus Heresy!)

However, I’m not as keen on GW as a company these days.  I’ve personally found some of the employees of GW to be pushy, unpleasant, and of an aggressive opinion that GW can do no wrong.  Everyone makes mistakes, so that tends to wind me up!  Suing authors for using  the term “space marine”, a term that predates GW by a significant margin is not exactly great work, for example.

With that in mind, I thought I’d take a look at alternatives to GW models for various forces in the 40K universe.  These are just my opinions as to what you could use the models for, rather than what they are being sold as – you may disagree, or feel they’d be better as something else.

Chaos Space Marines

I’ve never found much in the way of alternative Chaos Space Marines.  It’s a very iconic look, which doesn’t lend itself to alternatives terribly well!

However, Evilcraft do a fantastic set of Chaos looking troops in power armour with bolt pistols and bolter style weaponry.  Very cool, and ornate enough to be used as chosen if you just wanted some specialist models.

Puppets War do quite a good range of conversion bits, much of which is suitably spiky for the forces of Chaos.  In terms of straight models, they have a great squad that work work as a Raptor Squad.

They also have a reasonable number of troops that are probably better guard proxies, but would make OK cultists.  They also have some cracking zombies, for Nurgle plague zombies.

On the zombie front, Hasslefree Minis do a great, and cheap, set of zombie plastics.

 

And finally on the zombie/cultist front, Mantic Games do a great range of plague zombie marines:

Raging Heroes have a cracking model that could be could as a Nurgle general.

Zealot Miniatures do a model I think would work well as a chaos spawn.

Scibor do a small range of Chaos terminator types, which could be could for chaos lords.

Chaos Demons

Raging Heroes do some amazing Preying Mantis models, which would make fantastic Daemonettes.

They also do a great demon option for a Daemon Prince or Greater Daemon of Khorne.  You could probably get away with the smaller version as a Chaos Lord in a CSM force.

Puppets War do some good demons too. I love the thought of fielding Plague Bears instead of Plague bearers!

Avatars of War do fantasy models, but that isn’t a problem for Daemons!  They do a couple of cracking models that would make amazing Heralds of Khorne and Nurgle.

Maxmini do a fantastic line of Nurgle style demons, from Greater Demons:

Through smaller plague bringers, which would make a good herald:

Zealot Miniatures do an interesting Greater Demon of Khorne style model:

Imperial Guard

Imperial Guard are the closest thing in the 40K universe to standard human soldiers, and so are probably the easiest army to find decent alternative models for – for the infantry, anyway!

Mantic Games have their Corporation Army range, which are perfect guard replacements on the whole.

Interestingly, I’ve seen their Veer-myn line os space rats used for very effective chaos guard!

Dreamforge Games have a great range of stormtroopers that work well for Tempestus Scions, or maybe as veterans.

Statuesque Miniatures do some really cool female resistance fighters that would work really well as cultists or irregular guard.  As well as squaddies, they do a few special weapons, heavy weapons, snipers and commissars

Raging Heroes don’t currently produce many models. but are launching three full female guard army lines, loosely matching Steel Legion, Valhallan and Penal Legion Imperial guard lines.  At the moment, they do a small number of female officers which are great as commissars or custom commanders.

Victoria miniatures do a tremendous range of guard alternatives, as well as bits for customising any GW troops you may get.  If you want a custom regiment, or decent female troops, this is the place to go.  Their Arcadian rifles look absolutely cracking models.

Puppets War do a few squad options, but I’m not amazing taken by them, to be honest.  What I love, though, are their rough rider options, on motorbikes with lances.  Its something that has come up in the novels a few times, so it’d be good to see on the table.

Scotia Grendel do some interesting lines from the old VASA and Urban Mammoth games, which could easily be adopted for Imperial Guard.  Here’s one of their VASA squads, for example.

Maxmini do some great catachan alternatives, female alternatives, and a few space ogres for some Ogryn fun.

Mad Robot Miniatures have some brilliant conversion parts, but you can get complete guard squads in various looks.  Decent Valhallans are always a bonus these days, especially if you have most of an army already!

Space Marines

Mantic Games have a line of Enforcers.  While quite a different look from the traditional space marines found in GW, the equipment ties up quite nicely.

Puppets War have an interesting range of heavy armoured troops that would also do quite nicely, including strike (power) armours, and terminator armour in a range of configurations – even bikes and vehicles.

Scibor do some amazing marine style models.  Most of them match to more extreme versions of the various Space Marine Legions inspirations – Spartan for the Imperial Fists, Roman for the Ultramarines, Celtic for the Space Wolves, and so on, though there are some more unique ones, like egyptian options too.

Hitech Miniatures do some really interesting models, and again, break into groups that match the SM legion inspirations – more extreme than the very similar GW ones.

Kabuki Models do a great line of possible Primarch alternatives.  Less appealing now Forgeworld are producing official models, they are still gorgeous pieces in their own right.  Here is the Castellan Knight.

Eldar

I’ve never really found any good third party Eldar like models in army like levels.   That may change when Mantic Games get around to releasing their Asterian line of Space Elves!

Chapter House Studios do some great commanders on jet bikes, and also do a unique aspect warrior squad – Warp Stalkers – that looks like it’d run as howling banshees.

Dark Eldar

Raging Heroes are the current queens of the non GW Dark Eldar!  Not only do they have a really lovely female archon, succubus, and squads of “blood vestals” which are perfect for Wyches, it looks like they’ll be expanding their line in the future too!

Orks

Orks are tricky.  There aren’t generally huge numbers of space ork alternative models out there, though there are fairly large numbers of passable alternative vehicles.

Mantic Games do offer a large line of Marauders which would work well for Orks, both infantry and light vehicles.

Raging Heroes do a fabulous sci-fi ork warmaster, which would be amazing as your army warlord!

Puppets War do a fantastic range of Orky vehicles and planes, like this:

Adepta Sororitas

Well, I’ve never found any great models here for ladies in power armour.  Heck, its almost impossible to even get them from GW!

Having said that, it looks like Raging Heroes are planning on producing some nuns with guns options in the future – look here!

There are a couple of options that can be adapted from Privateer Press – Protectorate of Menoth.  I really like the Daughters of the Flame as Death Cult assassins as part of an Ecclesiarchy Battle Conclave.  Picture from Firestorm Games.

In addition, I think the Harbinger would make a brilliant alternative to Saint Celestine:

Imperial Knights

There’s only one real alternative to Imperial Knights out there – and that’s DreamForge Games Leviathan!

Necrons

There aren’t huge amounts of Necron alternatives out there either, unfortunately.  The best selection I’ve seen is from Puppets War. which has a reasonable range of things, like an enormous cyber spider (scarab) swarm.

There’s a C’Tan alternative too

And a couple of vehicle and canoptek spider options.  No basic troops at the moment though.

Squats

Well, there are a few options for the die-hard squats fan still.

The first is Mantic Games, whose Forgefather range is pretty extensive, and just the sort of thing you want from your Space Dwarves!

The second option I’ve come across is Hasslefree Miniatures range of Grymm.  You can’t beat some of these models for character:

Tau & Tyranids

Unfortunately, I’ve never come across anything that really works well for these!  There are a lot of Mycetic spores for Tyranids out there – but GW axed them from the codex.  Tau is a very unique look – there are some female Tau kits from Zealot Miniatures, but no full squads I’ve come across.  Some people have used Robotech type models in place of the crisis and riptide suits, but thats a step further away from the Tau models than I’d go normally.

The Dark Eldar horde continues….

Well, the paragons of pain continue to grow, with some further reinforcements appearing from the Dark Eldar Port of E’Baih!

Though yet to arrive, thats an additional:

10 Warriors, 20 Wyches, 7 Harlequins and 5 Scourges!

Taking my forces up to:

  • 1 Archon
  • 1 Succubus
  • 5 Incubi
  • 5 Mandrakes
  • 1 Ravager
  • 3 Raiders
  • 1 Venom
  • 50 Wyches
  • 46 Warriors
  • 5 Scourges
  • 9 Reaver Jetbikes

With a lot of harlequins available from my eldar force, plus the additional 7!  I must start looking at actually putting a list together soon 🙂

The Dark Eldar arrive

Days after posting about finishing the Imperial Fists as my main goal, my hobby ADD seems to have kicked in already…. and a full Dark Eldar army is winging its way to me via ebay.  This consists of:

  • 3x raiders (2 need minor repairs)
  • 1x ravager
  • 1x talos pain engine
  • 9x revear jetbikes
  • 20x wyches (need minor repairs)
  • 1x succubus (finecast)
  • 1x archon (finecast)
  • 5x incubi (metal)
  • 36x warriors
  • 2 custom cases from KR multicass
  • 1x codex: Dark Eldar
  • 1x box mandrakes (metal) unbuilt
  • 1x venom unopened
  • 1x wyches unopened

Thats quite a few DE!  Of course, I don’t know their current exact load out, but it should be fun!  I must stay the course, though – finishing the Imperial Fists comes first! Honest…..

More Harlequin Allies (Dark Eldar Codex)

Using the other Harlequin models and some sneaky choices, here is an additional allies list using the Dark Eldar codex.

500pts (499pts) Harlequin Allies (Dark Eldar Codex)

HQ

Archon  (High Warlock) – Phantasm Grenade Launcher, Blast Pistol (laspistol), Husk Blade, Shadow field – 165 pts

ELITES

Harlequin Troupe (New Harlequin models except death jester) – Troupe Master with pistol and power weapon, harlequin with pistol and close combat weapon, 2 x harlequins with kiss and pistol, 2 x harlequins with fusion pistols and close combat weapons, death jester – 184pts

TROOPS

Wyches – 4 x wyches (old harlequin models) with haywire, Hekatrix with Blast Pistol (laspistol), haywire and power weapon , Venom transport – 150

Raid on Teramore V – Formosa Sector

Deployment

The Inquisitorial forces won the rolloff for first turn, and deployment first amongst the building to the south, and the Dark Eldar lurked behind the monstrous generators to the north.

The scenario is annihilation, with a pitched battle deployment.

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Turn 1 – Inquistion (DE 0 Kills, Inquisition 0 Kills)

The Inquisition surged forward, with the psykers launching a barrage, which promptly scattered off the table.

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Turn 2 – Dark Eldar (DE 0 Kills, Inquisition 0 Kills)

The Dark Eldar retaliated, immobilising a chimera on the left of the field, and slaughtering a couple of Daemonhosts to the right.  The Voidravens missiles scattered away from their targets – the legendary Dark Eldar accuracy proving to be untrue.  They should have kept their targeting computers on icon_wink.gif

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Turn 2 – Inquistion (DE 0 Kills, Inquisition 0 Kills)

The inquisition continued to shuffle around rather ineffectively!  Heavy weapons in the inquisitors retinue couldn’t fire as the unit had moved, and the psykers attack once again scattered futilely away from the vehicles.

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Turn 2 – Dark Eldar (DE 0 Kills, Inquisition 0 Kills)

The Dark Eldar continued to hammer at the Inquisitors forces, killing several of the inquistorial retinue and charging into close combat with a witch cult to the left, exploding a chimera in the centre of the board (forcing out the acolytes within), and killing several more psykers and daemon hosts to the right.

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Turn 3 – Inquistion (DE 1 Kills, Inquisition 0 Kills)

The Inquisitors were holding their own in close combat to the left, while the death cult assasins closed in to assist them.  On the right, the picture was grimmer, with another psychic barrage scattering off the vehicles again, and the assassin lurking in a terrible, terrible position, unable to get a clear shot.

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Turn 3 – Dark Eldar (DE 1 Kills, Inquisition 0 Kills)

The Dark Eldar wyches to the left won the combat, and both Inquisitors fled, only to be cut down!  A brutal end!  To the right, all but two psykers were killed, while a raider hurtled over the arcoflagellants to inflict damage with its chain snares.

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Turn 4 – Inquistion (DE 4 Kills, Inquisition 0 Kills)

The Inquisition strikes back!  The death cult come roaring into close combat, striking down the remaining wyches easily.  On the right, the assassin uses a turbo penetrator to immobilise a raider, while the arco flagellants brutalised a ravager, immobilising it, stunning it and ripping off a dark lance.

 

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Turn 4 – Dark Eldar (DE 4 Kills, Inquisition 1 Kills)

The Dark Eldar could smell blood in the water, and moved in for the kill.  The voidraven annihilated the assassin in revenge for his work on the raider, while the wyches on the fallen raider pilled out to kill the warrior acolytes in the craters.

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Turn 5 – Inquistion (DE 6 Kills, Inquisition 1 Kills)

The inquisition tried to retaliate with the forces left to them, but the death cult assassins couldn’t bring the fragile raider near them down.  The Arcoflagellants smashed the ravager to the right to pieces, which exploded, killing 4 and forcing the rest to flee … within 6″ of the wyches, so they wouldn’t be able to rally.

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Turn 5 – Dark Eldar (DE 6 Kills, Inquisition 2 Kills)

At this point it was like taking candy from a baby, or slaves from the Imperium! Lelith hadn’t even bothered to leave her raider, so disappointed by the imperial resistence and lack of challenge.

The Wyches fired on the fleeing arcoflagellants, while the ravager to the left finally took down the immobilised chimera!  The void raven finished off the cultists, leaving only the death cult assassins on the field.

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End of Game – Inquistion (DE 9 Kills, Inquisition 2 Kills)

Well, a thrashing for the Imperial forces, with many slaves taken for sport in Commaragh!  It was a great fun game!

Lots of lessons learnt.  Death cult assassins are evil – but should have been armoured up in a Chimera or rhino to get them up close and personal.  The psykers were brutal, but might have done better with crusaders to shield them, or hidden in a chimera too and shot out!  of course, if they ever actually hit, it would have been more impressive icon_wink.gif    The Inquisitors are nasty, especially the low cost generic ones.  It might have been better to have Coteaz have a heavy weapons only unit in the centre, and kept them still.  The vindicare assassins are just plain nasty, and was wasted by poor positioning in this game – that and the lack of realisation of just how good they are against vehicles.  3 + 4d6 armour penetration makes them the  best anti armour unit in the game with a turbo penetrator shot, and he could have been infiltrated for perfect positioning.

The Dark Eldar are a much nastier force with the new codex!  Leonidas played really well to their strengths, and my lack of even light anti-armour!  I think the wyches do lack a little against heavier infantry compared to say howling banshees, but then they are basic troops and can take and hold objectives.  I think if I’d played a horrible GK knights list (3 psyflemen dreads, gone for just death cult assasins with perhaps one unit of psykers and chimera’d everything up for resilence) the Dark Eldar would have had to work a lot harder – its so difficult to take down the heavily front armoured vehicles.  Still, I’m glad I fielded the army I did, as I loved the scenario – not even the Inquisitors can stop teh xenos with just a scratch built force!

Such a fun, international game!

Raid on Teramore V – Formosa Sector

In the dying days of the 41st Millenium, the Formosa sector remained bright and properous thanks to the oversight of Inquisitor Coteaz.  However, even in this scrutinized and properous sector, some fools existed who avoid the black ships, and toy with powers beyond them.

Responding to an informant, Costeaz headed to Teramore V with his personal retinue, pressing two squads of elite local law enforcement into his service as he went to apprehend the cultists.  Perhaps fortunately for the planet, his timing was more fortunate than might have been expected …. as the depraved eldar of commoragh were stirring, and in need of entertainment from a fresh source.

Gangs, enforcers, and Inquisitors alike were forced to delay their reckoning to defeat this alien threat as dark shapes roared from hidden webway portals into the sky.  Beyond all else, suffer not the xenos to live!

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Forces in the Streets – 1250 pts.

HQ

Inquisitor Coteaz – 100pts

Ordos Hereticus Inquistor with powerfist – 40 points

Troops

Coteaz’s personal retinue 215

2 x Jokaero Weaponsmiths (gives 5+ invulnerable save to the unit), 5 Warrior Acolytes with Stormbolters and Power Armour, 3 Heavy Bolter Servitors, 2 Crusaders

Local Law Enforcement – Response Team 1 – 145pts

Chimera, 10 Warrior Acolytes with hot shot lasguns

Local Law Enforcement – Response Team 2 – 145pts

Chimera, 10 Warrior Acolytes with hot shot lasguns

Gangs – Daughters of the Flame (180)

12 x Death Cult Assassins

Gangs – Cultists – 100pts

3 Daemonhosts, 7 psykers

Gangs – Adeptus Mechanicus grafters – 180 pts

12 Arco flagellants

Elites

Vindicare Assassin (145pts)

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1250 Pts – Dark Eldar Roster – Cult of the Flayed Nun

Total Roster Cost: 1250

HQ: Lelith Hesperax (1#, 175 pts)
1 Lelith Hesperax, 175 pts

Troops: Wyches (10#, 233 pts)
8 Wyches, 106 pts = 8 * 12 (base cost 10 + Haywire Grenades 2) + Razorflails x1 10
1 Hekatrix, 57 pts = (base cost 20 + Haywire Grenades 2 + Agoniser 20) + Blast Pistol 15
1 Raider, 70 pts = (base cost 60) + Flickerfield 10

Troops: Wyches (10#, 215 pts)
8 Wyches, 90 pts = 8 * 10 (base cost 10) + Shardnet & Impaler x1 10
1 Hekatrix, 55 pts = (base cost 20 + Agoniser 20) + Blast Pistol 15
1 Raider, 70 pts = (base cost 60) + Flickerfield 10

Elite: Hekatrix Bloodbrides (10#, 252 pts)
8 Hekatrix Bloodbrides, 134 pts = 8 * 13 (base cost 13) + Razorflails x1 10 + Hydra Gauntlets x1 10 + Shardnet & Impaler x1 10
1 Syren, 58 pts = (base cost 23 + Agoniser 20) + Blast Pistol 15
1 Raider, 60 pts

Heavy Support: Razorwing Jetfighter (1#, 165 pts)
1 Razorwing Jetfighter, 165 pts = (base cost 145) + Splinter Cannon x1 10 + Shatterfield Missile x2 10

Heavy Support: Ravager (1#, 105 pts)
1 Ravager, 105 pts

Heavy Support: Ravager (1#, 105 pts)
1 Ravager, 105 pts

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Chavana III

On the world of Chavana III, deep within the Vulpes Astra subsector, a monastary is used to hold psykers for the Black Ships of Terra. the Retinue of the Red Dawn have broken the Imperial defences. Unknown to them, the Dark Eldar seek the same rich prize, for the suffering of psykers goes so much furtyer in their dark pits. Both sides are advancing implacably, willing to take any cost for such a rich prize!

The Dark Eldar are facing Chaos Space Marines in an Implacable Advance scenario from the battle missions book. This post will be updated with photos and a battle report after the game, but you can see tweets through the game (fodgaming)

Turn 1

The beserkers and possessed streamed forward towards the center of the battlefield, hoping to gain the monastary early, after securing their first objective, the shrine of St Alun of Chavona. The havocs overestimated their lascannons, as the dark eldar cowered out of range!

Overcoming their xeno cowardice the dark eldar advanced towards the center. The Archon and his incubi dismounted, opening a webway portal for the rest of their dark kin.

Turn 2

The Chaos forces continued their advance, heading towards the centre of the table. Lascannons flared to no effect, and the night lords impaled themselves on the monestary walls. lesser daemons ripped apart incubi, and an obliterator blew a weapon off a ravager.

In return, wyches and mandrakes poured through the portal, and the reaver jetbikes hurtled through the chaos lines on their turbocharged machines. The mandrakes and archon butchered the last lesser daemons while a ravager and reaver annihilated the obliterator. The other ravager advanced towards the chaos reserves, opening up with its disintegrators, killing several.

Turn 3

The beserkers on the left flank charged the ravager that had killed three of their number, but both their plasma pistols misfired! Dark Eldar witchery at work!

The havocs were out of range of the strange curse, and the heavy bolters and lascannons blew the skimming tank out of the sky. The beserkers led by kharn opened fire in the jetbikes, but left one alive as prey for the possessed, who torn the poor eldar to a thousand pieces.

The other ravager charged forward, while the raider headed for cover down the left flank. Wyches headed for beserkers for an awesome conflict. The ravager and raider opened up on the decimated beserkers, but failed to hit even once.

Turn 4

Both units of terminators arrived, turning the tide of the battle, annihilating lilith hesperax and an entire unit of wyches, as well as forcing the Archon round the left flank of the monastary. Without reinforcements, the wyches facing kharn, beserkers and the possessed were whittled down faster and faster. Wihout lilith and the remaining cabal troops hanging back, it eas a punishing turn for he dark eldar.

Two more raiders arrived, opening up on the terminators for comparatively little effect, as mandrake charged the slaneeshi termibators, ony to be surprised by their snake like speed and simultaneous strikes. The mandrakes broke and were pulled down by the slaneeshi, bellowing in pleasure and pain.

Turn 5

The terminators took down the remaining raiders, and proceeded to start butchering the cabal soldiers who emerged gasping from he wreckage. Kharn charged forward with the possessed, while the remaining beserkers regrouped in cover.

The Archon massacred the remaining beserkers on the left flank, before taking cover behind the ruins of a raider. The cabal troops were massacred by kharn, but those facing tzeentchi terminators ran clear to regroup in the distance. the last raider arrived and the troops took the comms bastion.

Turn 6

Terminators proceeded to exchange fire with the remaining soldiers, and kharn closed in for more butchery. The archon was punished from afar by the havocs, but his shadowfield saw him rough he worst of it.

The archon sprinted into the shrine of st Alun, but as he wasnt a scoring unit, he couldnt rescure the objective.

Turn 7

With the battle largely over, the Archon stayed in cover within the Shrine of St Alun. The terminators continued to whittle down the last cabal, while the comms bastion continued to pour its information through the webway.

As the beserkers couldnt get close enough to the tower to take he monastary, the game counts as a tactical draw! the forces of chaos largely ruled he battlefield, but the archon arguably had the moral victory by lurking at the chaos starting objective while holding their own.

Thoughts and comments

The dark eldar are much more of a force to be reckoned with. Both armies played riskily, with large numbers of reserves and deep strikes. Luck turned for the chaos forces, arriving earlier in the battle, and with the exception of the raptors, appearing perfctly to tun the tide of the game. If Lilith had turned up a turn earlier, with the cabal raiders, the game would certainly have gone the other way! Great game, and lots of fun, with Kharn butchering his own side, plasma pistols blowing up on a regular basis, and sneaky sorcerers suffering the wrath of the warp!

Dark Eldar Preview

Well, I received my White Dwarf early (subscription), and got my grubby paws on a copy of the Codex in a Games Workshop too.  Three words – Oh My God!!!!

The models are great, and the stats for HQ models are just totally out of this world.   Dark Eldar can field Harlequins now too (with the other troops they can field, I’m not sure why they’d want to except for the fact the models are gorgeous!), which works really well from the fluff.  In addition, the wych cult/cabal divide is gone – both wyches and kabal troops are basic troop types.

There are two big changes, and both really work with the fluff, though I think Dark Eldar will remain a hard force to play well.  The first is that although their weapons remain rapid fire, they count as poisoned with a 4+ to wound pretty much anything except vehicles.  Thats right, wraithlords are now easy meat for the Dark Eldar basic troops.

The second is really interesting – Power through Pain!  Essentially, the Dark Eldar feed on souls in agony, and it shows in the game!  For every full unit of troops wiped out, the Dark Eldar Unit responsible gets a pain token from teh additional power of the souls consumed.  There are three levels of enhanced power – (I’m not sure of the order, but I think its Feel No Pain (so an extra 4+ save!), furious charge, and then fearless).  If you get stuck in successfully at the start of the game, you’ll sweep the board!  If you get caught in front of a gunline though, its still very much a fragile force, so you really need to use the fast movement and take the fight to the enemy.

Wyches get invulnerable saves in close combat thanks to their dodging ability!  Lilith has an amazing ability.  Initiative of 9, so she’ll probably be striking first, then she gets an extra attack for every point of dfifference between her weapon skill of 9 and the unit she’s attacking.  She has 4 attacks anyways, so if she charges a unit of guard she gets +1 for dual weapons, +1 for charging, and +6 for the difference in weapon skills – thats 12 attacks!  She also takes advantage of the Power through pain rule, so she get even more resilient and stronger as the battle rages!

There’s quite a lot of little touches that work for the dark eldar as long as things go their way.  The Archon can take a shadow field, giving him a 2+ invulnerable save … but if he rolls a 1, the field collapses and is gone for the rest of the game.

Loads more Dark Eldar models to come, with a whole slew of HQ models still to arrive, new beastmasters and better monsters, venoms (light transports), with wych  models to hang on the side (which work on the raiders too, so you can mark which type of unit is onboard which ship).  New scourge models supposed to arrive too!  There are two aircraft listed in the codex, which for Spearhead games is an awesome advantage to dominate teh skies!

The models are gorgeous too, having seen them for real in GW.  I’m so tempted to do a “Dark Craftworld”, and paint the models as an equivalent eldar unit, so paint wyches as banshees, Kabalites as dire avengers, mandrakes as striking scorpions, incubi as warlocks, reavers as shining spears and an archon as a autarch.

It really brings them up to date, but you still need skill to play them – against necrons, for example, take the wrong weapon choices and you’ll flail ineffectively against the we’ll be back rules and gauss guns.  Take the right weapons and land a strong early assault and metallic parts will soon be spread all over the field.

I think horde armies like orks and guard would struggle most against them, but even marines won’t find it easy to fight off the onslaught!  I can’t see Eldar being able to match them now – every eldar strength is countered.  Howling banshees vs wyches, for example – the invulnerable save counters the banshees power weapons, and the wyches are at least as competent, though cheaper and a troop type so can hold objectives.  Poisoned weapons can gun down the avatars, wraithguard and wraithlords, and mandrakes and incubi will mince Striking Scorpions.

For Eldar to face Dark Eldar, you’d need to play to the unique eldar strengths – firepower and psychic strength – with farseers adding their might to dark reapers, guardians with heavy weapons and eldar tanks, you’d have a very interesting match!

As an additional note, the latest Salamanders book (Firedrake) is superb to show the current Dark Eldar society and background from the codex.  Well worth a read if you’re a fan of DE.