Sunday, 28 February 2010

Gearing up for more Combat Patrol: 500pts Chaos Space Marines

I'm gearing up for (hopefully) another round of Combat Patrol this week, this time fielding 500pts of my Khorne CSM army:

Squad 1 (150pts)
7x CSMs with Meltagun & Rhino

Squad 2 (200pts)
8x CSM with Flamer, Aspiring Champion & Rhino)

Squad 3 (150pts)
7x CSMs with Meltagun & Rhino

Friday, 26 February 2010

Combat Patrol: Imperial Guard Vs CSM (and Chaos)

"Prepare to die for the Emperor!!"

Had my first real go at Combat Patrol today, fielding 500pts of Guard Vs CSMs and Chaos using a couple of the missions from the tournament over in Philly. I forget the exact results, but I know I definitely one won (wiped out Chaos in 3 turns), got hammered in one, and drew in another. Hopefully, next time I can try out a CSM list and maybe work though all the Philly missions.

My main thoughts on the games generally were:

*500pts: This was a nice level to play at with each game taking about 50-60 mins (albeit at a relaxed pace with lots of chatting). What I especially liked about 500pts was that it focused your attention down on each point that was on the table and made you think more strategically rather than trying to spam with more units or multiple units for the same job. When i lost a 10 man squad in one combat round, that was over 10% of my army gone.

*Autocannons and multi-lasers, yay: Leaving aside my meltaguns on the CCS and PCS, the stars of the show were really the 3 autocannon squads and the multi-lasers on the chimeras. When the CSs managed to hit anything, they were lethal, it was just a case of rolling those 5s and 4s. The Chimeras were also useful with their multi-lasers, although I didn't really exploit their transport potential, typically using them as either mobile gun platforms or circling them like wagons.

*Scout Sentinels, boo: The sentinel didn't fare so well, aside from being a nice speedbump, tying a squad of CSMs up for a round or two of combat. It will be going on the Bay of E in the very near future...

*Orders: 'First Rank, FIRE! Second rank, FIRE' is a GREAT rule.

*A New List: The sentinel is going to have to go and be replaced with a special weapons squad with 4 flamers (making up the points by reducing the number of meltaguns to 3 in each CCS):

CCS (3x Meltaguns, Boltgun) 82
Chimera (Multi-laser & heavy flamer) 55

PCS (3x Meltaguns, bolt pistol) 62
Chimera (Multi-laser & heavy flamer) 55
10 Troops (Grenade Launcher, autocannon) 65
10 Troops (Grenade Launcher, autocannon) 65
10 Troops (Grenade Launcher, autocannon) 65
Special Weapons Squad (3 flamers) 50

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Imperial Guard out on (Snow) Patrol

"Look, someone is taking our picture! Look sharpish, lads!"

I woke up this morning (as an old bluesman might say) to find a lovely blanket of snow outside, so I quickly gathered up my 500pt IG Combat Patrol army and got some pictures of them before it all went. The pictures came out a bit darker than I would have liked, but I love the look of the snow. The snow was deep but not compacted so the Chimeras started to sink down.

All things being equal, I'm hoping for two gaming outings this week - one with my Daemons and one playing Combat Patrol with my Guard.

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Sisters in Battle: Looking to Interview Female 40K fans

Feeling inspired by some really interesting (and at times somewhat fraught discussions over female 40K players), I've decided that the next stage of my project looking at 40K fandom would be to interview some female gamers regarding their motivations and experiences.

As with the fanfiction part of the project, I'm looking to interview roughly 20 people either by email or PM. Everyone who takes part will also receive a £5 voucher for the UK online GW store (or £5 via paypal, whatever is easier) as a way of thanking you for taking part.

For more details or info, just drop me a line

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Combat Patrol: Thoughts on Missions

I've really buzzed off the discussion that has emerged from thinking about Combat Patrol. I think I will have a go at the rules that Joe posted over at his blog once i get my initial 500pts of Guard finished (only one more Chimera and a PCS to go):

CCS (4x Meltaguns) 90
Chimera (Multi-laser & heavy flamer) 55

PCS (4x Meltaguns) 70
Chimera (Multi-laser & heavy flamer) 55
10 Troops (Grenade Launcher, autocannon) 65
10 Troops (Grenade Launcher, autocannon) 65
10 Troops (Grenade Launcher, autocannon) 65

Fast Attack
Scout Sentinel (autocannon & smoke launcher) 45

The next question is what missions to play. Obviously with just one, maybe 2, troop choices it will be difficult to play multiple (3+) objective games. So what options are there?. My first port of call is going to be the scenarios currently being played over in Philly. Looking through the old 4th edition rulebook, 3 scenarios look also useful: Rescue (p. 190); Sabotage (p.206); and Ambush (p.206)

Sunday, 14 February 2010

A Quick Post: A Muddy Chimera

Will post some more thoughts on Combat Patrol later. In the meantime, here are some pictures of a Chimera that I've just finished. I painted it and thought 'hmmm, this needs more' so i ended up experimenting with weathering and battle damage:

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

More Thinking About Combat Patrol

Thanks to everyone who replied to my last thread on combat patrol, it has certainly helped to further develop my thoughts on how it could be brought into 5th edition.

Thinking aloud, and attempting to bridge the various ideas that have been floated, howabout:

*Points. The first question is whether we stick at 400pts, move up to 500pts or maybe even go up to 750. I like the idea of 400pts because it keeps it fast, something that you can get an army together for in pretty quick time, and because it forces limits on what can be fielded. Then again, while it works well for my Guard army, my CSM, Nurgle and Salmanders would struggle to field much of any use at that level. Maybe the solution here would be to keep 400 as an ideal, but keep it open so that it could go up in increments to 750? (just like a standard game is 1.5k, but can go up to X). By keeping a cap at 750pts, CS retains a distinct flavour that is different from the 'standard' game and missions.

*HQ. The 400pt (or 500 or 750) limit combined with the wound rule would mean that uber-powerful HQs could not be fielded. Practically and fluff-wise, it would make perfect sense to field, for example, a 10-man CSM with the Aspiring Champion as the HQ. I also like the idea that PAGE suggested that your HQ should be the mini with the highest leadership score.

*3 Wounds to 2. Is there a way of including a 3 wound character, but amending their stats (and points) so that they have 2 points?

* HS & FA. The more the points creep up to 750pts (or even lower for my Guard) the possibility of bringing in some HS comes up. Is it possible that the 'less than 33 AV' rule would automatically rule out most HS anyway? I can't think of a single HS vehicle that would be allowed through on that, but of course there are also such units as Obliterators or Devastator Squads. Maybe the solution here would be to say no HS? In terms of FA, I can see that if we are ditching the organisation charts, upping the points and emphasising the fluff then FA would be even more central a part of each army. Could a case be made for fielding a completely FA army?

*200pts limit: I still think that this is overly restrictive, especially. if we are including troops and designated transport together.

So pulling all this together, I'm wondering whether the following is doable:
*Stick to 400pts where possible, but have the option of going up to 500 or 750pts
*Leave the HQ choice open, albeit with the various restrictions in place. You can either use a separate HQ choice or have part of your troop choice (i.e. the Aspiring Champion) as the HQ. I think the 'no unique characters' rule should stay, but is maybe also covered by the wound rule.
*Remove the suggested 200pts limit, esp. if we are potentially moving up to 750pts.
*No HS, tanks are already covered in the '33' rule, but a general 'no HS' rule would cover the rest.
*All FA? Is it possible to work out an 'all FA' list?
*Wounds. Is it also possible to work out a rule of thumb to work out how to make a 3-wound character into a 2-wound one?

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Thinking about Combat Patrol

I've been thinking a fair bit about 40K Combat Patrol (AKA 40K in 40 Mins) recently, especially since I started my Guard army as CS would be a great way into starting to game with them before I reach 1k, 1.2. or 1.5k. Combat Patrol was part of the 4th edition rules, but was ditched from 5th edition arguably because GWs current emphasis is on bigger games (i.e. 1750pts is the new 1500pts, Apocalypse, War(hammer) of the Ring) rather than smaller, skirmish or narrative-based ones (i.e. LoTR SBG, Mordheim, Inquisitor, Necromunda).

The rules for combat patrol are pretty straightforward:

*Armies are no more than 400 points
*You must have at least one Troops choice.
*You may include a single HQ choice, but no more than one.
*You may spend remaining points on anything else in the codex
*No model can have more than 2 Wounds.
*No special or Unique characters.
*No model can have a save better than a 3+ or 4+ Invulnerable.
*Vehicles cannot have a total Armour Value greater than 33.
*No Ordnance weapons.

There are a few other optional rules such as you have to operate on WYSIWYG and that once your force is down to 50% you have to start taking leadership tests.

Several sites and blogs contain extra rules or refined rules or even attempts to update the original rules to make them fit better with 5th edition realities. An interesting example of this, and the blog that inspired me to write this posting, are the updated rules posted over at The Realms of Equinox. These take the initial rules and update them in several interesting ways, most notably:
* upping the points from 400-500
* restricting the number of Elite & Fast Attack choices to one each respectively
* an express ban on HQ, Heavy Support choices and Monstrous Creatures
* No single choice should cost more than 200pts

I've posted some initial thoughts on this, but my more detailed reflections would be:

*One Louder: I'm not convinced of the merits of upping the points to 500pts. I agree, as I said above, that the general move in GW is to reduce points for units and up the points for games (to sell more plastic crack), but I think the strength of CS is the way that it forces you to think within limits.

* You Can Stay At Home: While I can see the logic of restricting some elite choices and Monstrous Creatures (would Terminators be on a patrol?), I'm not sure about a complete ban on FA, HQ & HS. For example, it would fit within the fluff for a Marine patrol to comprise of at least one speeder, a Guard patrol to have sentinels etc. (in fact, one site has rules for a sentinel HQ). Equally, for HS & HQ: sure, you can try and include a turbo-charged HQ choice (Ahriman leading some Thousand Sons), but that is going to chew up points quickly and most likely break the Unique character or invulnerable save rules. By leaving it open, you are implicitly forced to take a low-level HQ choice (i.e. a bog-standard SM captain for 100pts minus the frills), which is, of course, more fluffy anyway. The 'No HS' rule is also, again, already covered with the AV rule

*I Need My Wheels: I don't think I will be fretting too much over the 'no choice over 200pts' with my Guard, but I would seriously struggle with this with my Marines and CSMs. Again, it would be fluffy for them to be travelling around in a rhino, but this (10 marines in a bog-standard rhino) would easily go over 200pts. 10 CSMs just walking around with meltas, a powerfist, and flamer would also push it over (esp. if they were Berzerkers). I think it makes more sense to, again, keep this open: so you want your troops to be 10 marines in a rhino? OK, but that is going to eat into your 400 pts and mean that you can't take, for example, Vulkan or Marneus Calgar (or much else for that matter)

My own sample Guard List (under the existing rules) would be:

Company Command Squad (4x Meltaguns) 90
Chimera (Multi-laser & heavy flamer) 55

Platoon Command Squad (4x Meltaguns) 70
Chimera (Multi-laser & heavy flamer) 55
10 Troops (Grenade Launcher, autocannon) 65

Fast Attack
Scout Sentinel (autocannon & Smoke Launcher) 65

The next question would be what missions would we play? The original rules just have annihilation, but there must be more (hopefully) fluffy ones that could be devised, covering, for example, ambushes, scouting etc.

Sunday, 7 February 2010

Imperial Guard Project: Over half-way there

Managed to do quite a bit of painting this week, finishing of my 3rd 10-man squad and a platoon command squad. I'm now hovering around 610pts, although Im going to repaint 300 pts of that (my 2 Leman Russes) once my spray-gun arrives.
Progress has been slowed a bit, though, by the general lack of Chimeras around. GW are releasing a new version in March and so at the moment you can't get one for love nor money in stores or online, and all the ones on ebay that (don't look they have been painted by a blind chimp armed with emulsion) are going for over 20 quid inc postage.
My main project this week was putting together the first PCS:
On the list they have 4 meltas, but I just modelled them with what I liked the look of.

Really impressed myself with this one - esp. the gold braid and the medals.

Inspired by my recent reading of Mechanicum, I also painted up a Forgeworld Techpriest and Servitor. Also really impressed myself with these, although I'm still getting used to the red as it is a much brighter shade than I'm used to using:

40K Fan Projects: A quick Update

This week has been a pretty hectic week for my 40K fanstudies project. I heard back from Popular Entertainment Studies that they didn't want my fanfiction article for their first edition. I was half expecting this as I knew that it didn't fit in the theme for that edition, but I thought I would try anyway.
Better news came back on my W40K fanfilm article. Transformative Works and Cultures finally accepted my third draft of the article (the first two had admittedly been a bit rushed), and hopefully it should be coming out in 2011.
This year I'm planning on presenting the papers based on the 40K fanfilm and fanfiction projects at the Far West Popular Culture Assoc and at the Popular Culture Assoc/American Culture Assoc. Conference in St Louis

I've also done a fair bit of painting too...