Louisiana Miniature Gaming Newsletter Issue 47

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Louisiana Miniature Gaming Newsletter Issue 47

Post  Admin on Sun Feb 05, 2012 2:29 pm

Hey here is a Gaming news letter I receive thought you might like to read it!


Newsletter time! Today I’m releasing the first installment of the Arena of Death. I had a lot of fun writing it and am looking forwards to writing more. This only represents half of round 1, and I’m busy working on the rest for next time. Please don’t ask who won the Arena, not even I know because I was waiting to work out Round 2 until I sent out all of Round 1. See? I’m waiting in suspense just like you! If you want to know whose character was my favorite, it’s Paul’s. I think you’ll be able to guess which one that is. After that, I’m short on rumors these days, so I have a review on the new Vampire Counts book. I write reviews on new books all of the time, so I might make it a habit of throwing them in here more often. Sorry 40k players, I really only read the fluff in the new 40k books (the Necron book was excellent!) so don’t really have any reviews to write there.

I’ve been asked a few times where I’m headed to this tournament season. This year, my first stop will be Quake City Rumble in San Francisco, CA. My wife gets to choose one tournament every year that she doesn’t play in, but gets to go site seeing for a few days instead. That’s call a compromise vacation. Ed Philips made his case to her on why we should go to his tournament while we were at the Throne of Skulls last year. My monetary arguments and hatred of flying were drowned out by Ed’s Slanneshi voice. Well, going to a tournament that has beer served to you by porn stars can’t be all bad! About a month after that, it’s our annual trip to Bayou Battles in Houston. A bunch of us will be bringing special character themed armies and I’m no different. Greasus Goldtooth may be not good, and he might be slow, and he might not hit as hard as an Irongut champion, and his passive abilities might not be useful and he might be almost 400pts, and he might force me to finish dead last, but by God, my army will look awesome! That’s what makes Bayou Battles great. That and the Win Juice. To finish the year, we’re returning to The Alamo. Two of my three favorite all time tournaments were here and unfortunate scheduling has kept me away for too long now. Minus Thanksgiving weekend, the November schedule is clear and, after several discussions with the wife, will remain so!

PS My new Ogre army will not contain a BSB and will have only one wizard (a lvl 1). That’s dedication!

Next month, I can nearly guarantee that I’ll be at the Little Wars tournament. No crazy family emergencies will stop me and work has me a go so far. Granted, I can always get called in in the case of an emergency, but that’s unlikely. As usual, I encourage anyone that hasn’t been to a Warhammer Fantasy tournament lately to go and have fun for a day.

Little Wars Tournaments

February 11, 10AM – 2500pts Fantasy Tournament

February 18, 10AM – 2000pts 40k Tournament

March 10, 10AM – 2500pts Fantasy Tournament

March 17, 10AM – 2000pts 40k Tournament

April 14, 10AM – 2500pts Fantasy Tournament

April 21, 10AM – 2000pts 40k Tournament

May 12, 10AM – 2500pts Fantasy Tournament

May 19, 10AM – 2000pts 40k Tournament

June 9, 10AM – 2500pts Fantasy Tournament

June 16, 10AM – 2000pts 40k Tournament

July 14, 10AM – 2500pts Fantasy Tournament

July 21, 10AM – 2000pts 40k Tournament


Regional and GW Circuits

Unknown 2012: Alamo GT (San Antonio,TX)

April 19-22, 2012: Adepticon (Chicago, IL)

October 2012: Invitation Semi-Only Throne of Skulls (Memphis, TN)

February, 10-12 2012: Lonewolf (Dallas, TX)

Unknown 2012: Alamo 40k GT (San Antonio,TX)

June 29-July, 1 2012: Quake City Rumble (San Francisco, CA)

June 21-24, 2012: War Games Con (Dallas, TX)

Unknown 2012: Bayou Battles (Houston TX)

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Warhammer Fantasy RTT


Dates: Feb 11, March 10, April 14, May 12, June 9, July 14

Time: 10AM

Where: Little Wars

Game: Warhammer Fantasy

Website:

Price: $10

Description: 2500pts, three rounds. All Army Books/Ravening Hordes must be there latest versions. 8th Ed rules apply. Special Characters ok

Prizes: Gift Certificates


Warhammer 40k RTT

Dates: Feb 18, March 17, April 21, May 19, June 16, July 21

Time: 10AM

Where: Little Wars

Game: Warhammer 40k

Website: http://lw40k.proboards.com/index.cgi

Description: 2000pts, three rounds. Check out the websites for the rules, although I doubt there’s anything shocking

Prizes: Gift Certificates

Got a Warhammer Fantasy, 40k, Warmachine or Specialist Game Tournament you want included here? Email me the details with the title “Tournament”

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Arena of Death

Vampire Thrall Edward –

Infinite Hatred

Beguile Opponent takes -3ld test, he fails and vamp rerolls to wound

Crown of the Damned 4+ Wd

The Flayed Hauberk 2+AS

The Other Trickster's Shard Opponent rerolls Wd saves

Sword of Kings Killing Blow



Bretonnian Lord Sir Vivor -Heavy Armour; Shield; Questing Vow, warhorse

Gromril Great Helm 6+ Armor Save; Re-roll failed armor saves.

Birth-Sword of Carcassone +1S; Enemies must reroll successful armour saves.
Virtue of Confidence (1st) Must always issue and accept challenges. Rerolls failed to hit and to wound rolls in challenges.
Potion of Foolhardiness One Use Only; Take at the beginning of any player turn. Immune to Psychology and has Devastating Charge special rule until the end of the player turn.



Arch Lector Hildebrand the Old- Heavy armor, shield

VanHorstman's Speculum Switch WS, S, T, A with opponent

Holy Relic 4+ ward save

Ogre Blade +2 Strength



Dwarf Lord Crazyleggs –Shieldbearers, Great Weapon
Runic Armour: (Immune to Killing Blow and Poison), Rune of Stone (+1AS)
Runic Talisman: Master Rune of Spite (4+ Ward)



Skaven Warlord Ratt -Ratogre Bonebreaker, Rat Hound Bodyguard

Berserker sword Frenzy

Armour of Destiny (5+ AS, 4+WD)

The Other Trickster's Shard Opponent rerolls ward saves



Dark Elf Highborn “something something” – Heavy armour

Crimson Death, Strenth 6 never modified, 2 handed.
Dragonhelm, 2pluss ward vs fire
Pendant of Khaeleth, reverse ward
Black Dragon Egg, grants T 6 and breath weapon for one round.



Savage Orc Warboss Zog - Choppa

Charmed Shield Ignore first hit

Sword of Anti-Heroes +1S +1A

The Other Trickster's Shard Opponent rerolls ward saves



Ogre Bruiser Fat Gut – Heavy Armour, Great Weapon

Skalm Heals d6 wounds at start of turn

Mawseeker +1T

Seed of Rebirth 6+ regen



Tomb Queen Fetra the Ugly – Chariot, Heavy Armour, Shield

Sword of Might +1S



Night Goblin Big Boss Paulblin – Great Weapon

Fozzrick’s Folding Fortress Makes a castle…. that doesn’t help



Dark Elf Highborn Lord Twinkie

Soulrender Great Weapon, strike’s last, armour piercing

Pendant of Khaeleth, reverse ward

Something that gives 1+ AS that I don’t feel like looking up



Beastlord Ringor

Primeval Club Opponent’s LD= Your Strength



The Border Princes is a bloody landscape of many races and cultures, all vying for control over this unstable region. Imperial Barons, questing Brettonian knights, Dwarven prospectors, Skaven pack masters, Orc Warbosses and Beastmen herds all coexist in these lands. Rarely does any leader come the fore to dominate this region and if one does, his reign is always short. In this land of constantly shifting loyalties, there is one area along the Howling River that’s regarded as a neutral site from all that traverse these lands: Kadon’s Coliseum. Pit fighters, assassins and warriors from all over travel here in the hopes of making some easy money or to satisfy their blood lust. It’s kill or be killed, all for the thrill of the mob and a portion of the proceeds. A new Orc Warboss is challenging Baron Rochester for control over the surrounding lands, flooding the Coliseum with mercenaries looking for work. Today will be a good day for bookies and warriors alike.

Dusk began to descend on the stadium and the witch fire lamps were lit. In only a few minutes, all bets would be finalized and the stadium would be filled beyond capacity as scalpers continued to sell tickets to anyone that still wanted to buy. Standing room only was code for if you were bigger than someone with a seat, they’d have to stand somewhere else.

It was at this point that the gates opened and the head official made his way into the arena. The crowd, eager with anticipation, rose to their feet to cheer the arrival of the much beloved Judge Mills Lane. His bald head and patented zebra coat made him an easy target for the crowd. As he made his way to the center of the stadium, the frenzied cheering increased. Mills reached for the enchanted voice amplifier at his side, and the crowd knew it was go time.

“Welcome to Kadon’s Coliseum! Tonight, we’ll have a series of good clean fight. There’ll be no eye gouging, kicks to the crotch, disintegration rays, enchanted death bombs and gnoblar.” the crowd roared with laughter, because obviously, the Judge had no intention of enforcing any of these, except the last one. Nobody likes Gnoblars. “Let’s get it on!” he yelled, doing his patented fist pump

_______________________________________________________________



The first fight of the night was a classic mismatch of good vs. evil, where an aging Priest Hildebrandt the Old was pitted against a youthful looking Vampire Edward. Edward was wearing one of his many “Team Edward” shirts that drove the school girls crazy. As he made his way into the arena, he did a twisting flip through the area that finished in a cartwheel, while his opponent walked gingerly forward, leaning heavily on his staff. There were many jeers in the direction of the old man as Team Edward mad their presence known inside the stadium.

“Old man, I apologize for the atrocities I must commit to your aging body tonight. I’ll make you an offer though. Because I’m one of the new age attractive sparkling vampires that talks about their feelings while listening to the Jonas Brothers all night long, we can sit and talk about the curse of unlife that keeps me unnaturally young and beautiful forever until old age naturally takes you in your sleep. How about it?”

“No,” Hildebrandt spoke in his cracking voice. The old man didn’t appear to be leaning quite so heavily on his staff anymore as he continued to approach the youthful vampire. “I don’t think so. In my many journeys across the Empire, I’ve seen many sights and fought many evils. In my day, we trekked barefooted through snow and treated our elders with respect. Not like you punk kids.” He stopped, no longer using his staff at all.

“Old man, I celebrated my 101 birthday last week, so don’t tell me the advantages of the advent of age. I’ve probably forgotten more than you’ve ever known.”

The old man began stretching. He almost seemed to be getting younger. “I have to agree with you on that. There aren’t a whole lot of advantages to the ravages of age.” The priest unbuttoned the top button on his shirt. “That’s why I picked up this handy necklace that steals the vitality of my opponent. So, how does it feel?”

Edward looked in horror at his cracked and aged hands. His opponent was now a large youthful man. This was not good.

With a roar, Hildebrandt lunged at Edward, swinging his staff with wild abandon. With such speed, there was no way that Edward could raise his sword in time. The emerald in Edward’s Team Edward Crown began to glow and Hildebrandt’s staff stopped just inches away from Edward’s head. Taking advantage of his opponent’s surprise, Edward stabbed Hildebrandt in the side, hoping the magic of the sword would disembowel the not so aged priest, but alas, he was not so lucky, and the priest jumped back to avoid the fatal blow.

“It’s past time for you die, creature.” Said Hildebrandt with a snarl. Pulling out his Icon of Sigmar, he charged the vampire, “THE POWER OF SIGMAR COMPELS YOU BITCH!”

Light erupted from the priest’s hand and enveloped the vampire. Unnatural screams and cries at the unfairness of his plight erupted from where the vampire had been standing, and when the light receded, there was naught but dust and a Team Edward button remaining.

The wizened old priest, leaning heavily on his staff, made his way slowly from the arena, the sobbing and crying of Team Edward fans following him as he departed.

_______________________________________________________________



To clean up after the last fight, sand was kicked over the blood that had pooled on the arena’s floor and the remnants of the Vampire’s clothes thrown into the stands to placate some lucky weeping fan. Unfortunately, a riot broke out amongst the women in the stands over who would get Edward’s Team Edward shirt. The Brute squad was dispatched and the Giant, Andre, quickly settled the dispute by eating a couple of Goblins and keeping the shirt for himself. The crowd hushed as it was time for the next fight.

The first to enter was the famous Dwarven brawler Crazylegs. A loud cheer went up from the Dwarf corner as his shield bearers hoisting him up on the shield of his fathers. He held his mug of Bugman’s XXXXX Beer up high, driving his fan base into a frenzy. Unfortunately, a well thrown rock from the Zogin’ Orc section knocked the mug from his hand and spilled its contents all over the ground. Raucous laughter boomed across the stadium as curses and oaths erupted from the Dwarf section. Crazylegs pulled out his Pocket o’ Grudges book and quickly made a few notations about spilled beer and row 17 for later…

As the gates from the other side of the stadium opened, the crowd went nuts: it was time for Fat Gut. Men wanted to be him, women wanted to be with him and Gnoblar just wanted to be tall. As the extremely Fat Ogre emerged into the stadium, a particularly large pair of lady’s undergarments was thrown at his feet from the direction of a rather ugly Ogress, who whistled loudly in his direction. He stopped briefly to do his traditional Ogre bellow:

“Fat Gut FAAAAAAAT!” He bellowed, then paused with what passes as a quizzical look for an Ogre. He pointed and began to count the three Dwarves. “One… two…uhh… Not one. Why not ONE!”

Judge Mills Lane walked over to Crazylegs, narrowing his eyes as he prepared to once again explain the excessively complicated one champion per side rule to the offending Dwarf.

“Honorable Judge Mills Lane sir, the Dwarves of this realm have no functioning knees and it’s really hard on my hips to walk around under such strained conditions, so my liegemen, who were born with excessively strong hip bones, carry me around. Besides, I don’t come up to that monstrosity’s waist anyway! If you ask me, that’s the real crime here.” The Judge was clearly not buying it and opened his mouth to say so when the Dwarf quickly intervened, “By the way, I seem to have accidentally arrived with my gold pouch, I don’t suppose you could hold it for me until the match is over. “ He said, handing the large bag of gold to the Judge.

“I’ll allow it.” Mills agreed, while doing his fist pump and yelling, “Let’s get it on!”

That was all Fat Gut needed to break into his Bull charge and, unfortunately for the Dwarf, the shield bearers held him at perfect kicking height for an Ogre. The Dwarf barely had time to raise his axe before the Ogre kick caught him in the stomach and sent him hurtling through the air. The ensuing Stomp of his leg crushed one shield bearer into the ground, while the other quickly grabbed the shield and began to run after his now airborne Lord.

“Good hang time.” Quipped Mills Lane, opening up his book and recording the new record for Dwarf punting.

After skipping across the ground like a rock on a pond, Crazylegs finally came to rest on the far side of the arena, where he waited patiently for his shield bearer to pick him and carry him back towards Fat Gut, who was busy celebrating his new Dwarf Punting record by jumping up and down on the crushed shield bearer and splattering him across the arena floor. It was about this time that Fat Gut realized the follow through on his punt had imbedded the Dwarven axe in his gut and the excessive celebration had done his damaged internal organs no good as blood was now pouring from the wound. He grabbed a green vial at his side, drank the contents and, much to Crazylegs’s dismay, the wound knitted together and the axe fell harmlessly to the ground.

Fat Gut turned to face Crazylegs, and his unsteady shield bearer, while bringing his massive two handed sword over his head. Crazylegs gritted his teeth and drew his axe in anticipation of the mighty blow that would soon follow, as his very tired shield bearer wobbled left and right, clearly focusing only on holding his Lord up.

“FAT GUT SMASH!!!” as the massive Ogre brought the Sword straight down towards the Dwarf. At the last second, Crazylegs leaped from the shield, the doomed shield bearer breathed a sigh of relief as the weight on his arms was lessoned and he could finally relax. Unfortunately, it was the last thought he ever had, and the Dwarf and shield were cleaved in twain as Fat Gut’s sword drove straight through them, splattering brains and bone everywhere, before imbedding itself deep into the ground.

Crazylegs, using his powers of slow motion while doing a flip through the air over Fat Gut’s head, swung his axe deep into the exposed side of the Ogre’s neck and sliced clean through his spine. The swing nearly decapitated the Ogre and he collapsed instantly.

The Dwarf landed with a flourish. Holding his axe high, he expected cries of adulation from the crowd to erupt any moment now. Instead, the stadium erupted in boos as cabbage and tomatoes were thrown his direction from all corners of the stadium. Even the Dwarf corner booed loudly for Crazylegs’s shield bearers had been some of the most popular Dwarves in the area. Crazylegs quickly waddled out of the arena, resigned to the fact that only one crazy nearly albino guy was cheering wildly for him.

________________________________________________________________



There was a short delay before the final bout of the night due to Fat Guts fat dead corpse- it was simply too big for the cleanup goblins. Their solution? Hack him into smaller pieces using whatever they have on their persons- knives, short swords, their teeth and other such ineffective items. As you can imagine, it wasn’t the most efficient way to do things and was creating a terrible mess in the middle of the arena. After an hour, the tiny greenskins had only removed a leg and part of his arm from the stadium. The crowd was getting restless, so the brute squad was called out to provide some amusement by squishing a few of the offending goblins while Andre the Giant hauled off Fat Gut. It was time for the next fight

The not so mighty Goblin Warboss Paulblin entered the arena to jeers and laughter. He looked way too much like the cleanup goblins that had failed oh so badly and delayed the fighting for over an hour. He shrieked his annoyance at the crowd’s response a few times, but this only served to increase the laughter. The giant sword was way too big for him to use effectively was the only thing that even remotely looked menacing.

The other gate opened and an undead chariot drove full speed into the arena, circling around and around the arena. Ooos and ahhs followed Fetra the Ugly as the magical steeds drove faster and faster, demonstrating the full splendor of her dead homeland. Against such might, what hope could a mere Goblin have at victory? This was obviously what Paulblin was thinking as a pool of yellow was spreading around his feet. Drinking all of that water before the fight was clearly a mistake.

Shrilly chirping his disgust again, Paulblin grabbed a cube from his pouch and threw it at the ground a few yards away and up grew a giant many storied tower. Fetra turned her chariot towards the Goblin in a vain attempt to cut off his escape, but he was too quick and darted into the tower with a curse and a rude gesture. There must have been a magical elevator or something because arrows immediately began to fall ineffectually around the tower. His aim was really bad.

Fetra turned to Mills, Mills looked at the tower, and then back at Fetra “I’ll allow it.”

Fetra sighed, and then walked towards the door. The Goblin had been kind enough to leave the door ajar. Was it a trap? Well, after climbing stairs for a half hour while expecting an ambush at every floor, Fetra was pretty sure that it was not a trap and the Goblin was indeed just that stupid.

Finally, Fetra climbed the final ladder to the roof, expecting the Goblin to attack, but she found the Goblin was way too busy THROWING arrows and cursing at the top of his lungs. Fetra had wondered where the Goblin had found a bow, since Goblin Warbosses, upon attaining their position, swore off the use of all missile weapons for no reason. Seriously, they can’t use bows for some reason…

Fetra yelled a challenge that caused the Goblin to jump with obvious surprise. The door being opened was definitely an accident. Fetra strode forward, and Paulblin grabbed for the giant sword and raised it high over his head. The sword weighed about as much as the poor goblin and when he brought it back over his head, it caused him to take a long unsteady step back. He hit the railing with a screech and plunged over the side of the building.

Cries of “Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee…” reverberated throughout the arena long after the sudden stop of the Goblin.

Unfortunately, very few people were still around to see it because the lack of action had caused everyone to go home for the evening in disgust. Now the depleted Goblin staff would have to work all night to remove the giant building from the Arena. Paulblin could do no right.



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Painters For Hire!


Name:Chris Watson

Email: ghazzy69@live.com

Phone: (210) 623-0523

Accolades: For the past 1 ½ years, I have painted 2 Award winning armies for the Indy GT tournies (plus Award Winning singles… large and small). Currently, I am working on 2 additional armies for myself, but frankly… I want to see someone else with an original army painted by Chris Watson, and thoroughly enjoying it out on the battlefield. My work in someone else’s hands! Most of you know my quality of work, my honor, and camaraderie… so lets talk turkey… er… minis/armies. Get me those figures! Give me a small amount of time… and you will have a nice clean, vibrant army that will make your nips perky!



__________________________________________________________________



Stores of the ‘letter
+1 Gaming

Address: 34201 Veterans Blvd, Suite A-3

City/State: Metairie, LA

Phone Number: (504) 322-3411

Website: http://www.plus1gaming.com/


Little Wars of Baton Rouge

Address: 7517 Jefferson Highway

City/State: Baton Rouge, LA

Phone Number: (225) 924-6304

Website http://www.littlewars.com


Go 4 Games

Address: 701 David Dr.

City/State: Metairie, LA

Phone Number: (504) 324-8335

Website: http://go4gamesnola.com/



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Chris’s Crazy Review of the Vampire Counts

Not a lot to be said as an intro. There’s a new Vampire Counts book, and as I’ve had a Vampire Counts army since 4th edition, who better to make fun of them than me? Well, probably someone that actually likes using the army for one. Well, I’m happy to report these aren’t your father’s Vampires, nor are they the wussy ones from those awful Twilight books. These kill shit dead. Without further ado:


Characters

Vamp Lord +15pts +1A -1 wizard level

Necromancer +10pt

Wight King +10pt -shield

Vampire +5pt +1A

You should see a trend here- characters increase in points across the board. Vampire Lords really go back to the pricing of a couple of editions ago (and the stats with the +1A, still only 3 wounds though), but, unfortunately, they go back to the power level as well. Want a rerolling to hit S7 Vampire with Red Fury? No problem! You can turn these guys into magic masters too if you want (or both if you want to spend 400+ points), but Master Necromancers are much cheaper and one can be upgraded to raise skeletons above their starting size. The Strigoi Lord is a little more expensive and a little more vicious (poison and infinite hatred) than a normal vamp lord, but also much more naked since they can't take magic armours. Looking into the future, I think we’ll see a lot of armies run by Necromancers because a lvl 4 is nearly half the cost of a lvl 4 vamp. Unlike the Skaven Lord choices, taking a ld 8 Necro as your general has consequences…

Core

Zombies -1pt +1S +1T +1I +1LD (can be raised above unit size)

Skeletons -3pts (spears for free (can be raised above unit size with help from Necro)

Ghouls +2pt (can't be raised above starting size)

Dire Wolves +1S on charge, Vanguard


Suck it Ghouls! I'm sure the first question the authors of the VC book had to ask themselves was 'How do I make people not auto take only Ghouls' Well, confine them to their unit size (ie no possibility of increasing the size of the unit beyond starting strength), increase their points, cut everyone else's points in half. About damn time. I'm not sure if they did enough to move them to a cheap supporting unit, but those 30-40 model ghoul hordes will eat away at a tight budget quickly, especially since 50% of your army will be heroes. Zombies are now the only unit that can be raised unconditionally above their starting strength and they can be raised quickly. The skeleton bunker still looks feasible, but only one model can raise skeletons beyond their starting size and with the short ranges of your spells, it might be unfeasible to bunker all of your characters together. Also, as you can see, the Corpse Cart and at Swarms have all moved to Special. Oh, and I think everything here actually counts to core now, whereas I don't think the pups counted to core last time.

Special

Corpse Cart +15pts, S4 Chariot, Zombies S3, CorpseMaster attack (Lodestone +5pts, Balefire -10pts)

Batswarm +1W +1A, Always strike last for enemy units in btb

Graveguard -1pt, no more magic weapons

Black Knights -3pts, lance separate now (2pts per model), barding -1pt, no more magic weapons

Fell Bats -4pts

Spirit host -20pt, min unit size 1. Lame

Not a lot of changes here. Most units got cheaper, sans the Corpse Cart for obvious reasons (ie everyone took them before). The biggest change was to the lamest unit- spirit hosts. Yes I hate Spirit Hosts, they force me to take Yhettees in my army and Yhettees are a close second to Gnoblars on my Ogre shit list. These guys are 20pts cheaper and now and the minimum unit size is 1. That really means they're 150pts cheaper, since before you were obligated to take them in units of 3. Still slow unless you keep them in your General's 12" bubble, which, as you'll come to realize, is pretty much everything in this army. Oh and the Corpse Cart is now a chariot. This should come as no surprise, I mean really, look at the thing! You do pick up a few new units here though. Mainly the SuperGhouls and the flying batpire things. Superghouls look ok, they don't have the vampire special rule so they can be raised easy enough, but they don't have the vampire special rule so they're slow. That 12" bubble thing. The Batpire's are vicious killing machines.... if your general is within 12" of them. Otherwise, they'll frenzy and screw you over by charging detritous all game long. This is really where that ld 8 Master Necromancer can bite you in the ass. See? trend! We've still got a ways to go!

Rare

Vargulf +1I

Blood Knights -5pts +1I Flag of Blood Keep

Black Coach +5pt doesn't absorb dice any more, roll dice gain abilities on 6s

Wraiths, No skirmish maintain Lame special rule "Suck fun from game", ie still the same



Really not much in the way of changes for the existing units here. The Coach doesn't actually absorb dice anymore, you just roll them and count the 6s. Otherwise its the same. Blood Knights do NOT get drastically cheaper, which I found to be unusual, although you can pay even more points to get a 4+ ward from shooting. Ouch. I'll still leave this unit at home because once it's outside of your generals ld, frenzy takes over and they'll charge over the horizon. Wraiths don't appear to skirmish anymore, kinda odd. They still piss me off though and fortunately, they're much harder to raise now. The Varghulf is mostly unchanged, but since he doesn’t have frenzy, is a vampire, and is pretty fast, he is a beastly flanker. This might be the only model in the army that can operate entirely independent from your general. A new rare is a new one: The Mortis Engine. The model is awesome, the rules are pretty good. 6+ Regen (or +1 to those that have Regen already) to units within 12" and then it still has some other hurty bubble abilities and then it still makes ALL mages within 12" roll twice on the miscast table (opponent chooses result), as well as gives all Vampire Lore wielding wizards +2 to cast. Something that makes your troops better, hurts your opponents troops, and screws wizards- Not bad at all. It's one flaw (other than possibly screwing your wizards if you get too close) is that it's not exactly a winner in combat and can be ground down to dust, despite it's toughness, wounds and save. I'd take one. I'm curious to see if we start seeing a few lvl 1 Necros in a nearby zombie unit, spamming invok with one di. The +2 makes it a 50/50 shot, and 65pts a necro isn't too bad.... The TerrorGheist is still pretty kewl. That brings me to Magic

Magic

0.Invok

1.Vanhels (move 8", reroll hits, no charging)

2.Hellish vigour (reroll to wound)

3.gaze of nagash (same)

4. raise dead (pretty much the same)

5.Curse of the Years (same)

6.Wind of Death (some template thing that doesn't raise ethereals)

Alright, here's where the run really starts, since everyone knows VC live and die in the magic phase. Invok is now a bubble spell with ranges of 6", 12", 18" and cost, wait for it, 6, 12, 18 to cast. Score one for creativity! As you can see, these are pretty limited ranges and its easy for things to run outside this bubble of protection. Also, invok can no longer be cast multiple times. Just once per caster like any normal 0 level spell. VC players will have to either run very few rather fragile units with every caster bunkered in (more on this later!) or multiple wizards spread out across the table. Even with a large bunker/train/whatever, I can stop a couple of invoks a turn and just ignore the other spells here though as none of them are game winners. Yes, VC do have access to other Lores, but not the VC Lord unless you have 2, because that shmuck has to have Necromancy. By the way, the augments up there, 12" range. No more VC Generals lurking well behind the lines!


Magic Weapons/Items/Whatever

Lets scroll down the important ones: No Drakenhoff Banner, No Crown of Command, No Chillblade, No +2 Power dice bloodline, No cheap ward 4+ ward saves, No ethereal characters, much less lame crap that everyone hates. Pretty much all of the classics are still there, just more expensive. Carstein Ring is a Vlad only item now, as is the Black Axe of Krell for Krell. Really only the blatantly overpowered stuff that we all knew was going to die (You're on notice Lizards! Prepare to lose that stupid Cup and the Bane Head!) was kicked the curb. Fortunately, you really scored in the bloodline department. Red Fury combined with Quickblood (or on strigoi lord) combined with the Ogre Blade will destroy anything. Screaming banner on some skeletons (roll 3 dice for fear take 2 highest) combined with -1 ld for ld tests and reroll successful fear tests (or cancel bsb rerolls) will make your fear tests relevent. The magic oriented bloodlines suck. For damn near 100pts, you can reroll one of your two winds of magic dice and the other one actually does nothing right now. It adds d3 to a successfully cast invok of nehek spell. Unfortunately, a successfully cast spell is one that is not dispelled, but why would you add D3 to a spell that's already complete? You wouldn't! Wait and the FAQ should change the wording to an invok of nehek that meets/exceeds the casting value. Not great, but better. Yep, there's your magic bloodlines. Oh, almost forgot the one that allows you take another non-life lore for the vamp. Mind you, your general vamp can take this bloodline, but he still has to take the Vamp Lore, ie you wasted 25pts.

Vampire Mounts

A little has changed here. Zombie Dragons dropped back down to ws 4 since that's what they'd been historically and went back to T6 and W6. They still have the -1 to hit for everything in btb, which is nice I guess. I still think that if you've mounted the most important model in your army on a large target you're just asking to eat a cannonball though (and even Ogres have cannons these days, hur hur hur). The spectral Coven is pretty much the same way. The model is awesome, it's a chariot, it's got the spectral host attacks, but it really has the same problem as the zombie dragon- you eat cannonballs. Throw a hero on this bitch instead if you really want. The abilities for both the Zombie Dragon and the coven don't help your army, they only make it harder to hurt your Vampire in combat, which kinda sucks. I wish it had more of a mortis engine kinda feel. The real bonus for these things is the large target rule. Riding on one of these, your leadership is now an 18” bubble and so your frenzied flanking units now have some room to operate. Sorry, doesn’t increase your spell range though. Still no reason to take the Abyssal of Terror, and the Hellsteed and Nightmares are the same, and Vampires can still not ride spectral steeds to be able to join black knights without screwing there movement abilities.


Fluff

The most important thing to me, strangely enough, is the fluff and I thought it was a let down. They had some interesting rewrites of Konrad's history and added a lot to Mannfred's (Storm of Chaos is back by the way), but they left out pretty much any direct mention of the different bloodlines. You get little tidbits here and there, but nothing that ties them together like in the 5th and 6th ed books. It’s a shame.


Favorite Change

My favorite change in this book is a really strange one: Bat Swarms. I know it’s a little strange to enjoy such an inconsequent unit, but you have to understand how useless these guys have been for much of the VC lifespan and how useless Swarms have been in 8th edition on a whole. Now they give enemy units in base to base contact always strikes last and this is actually not bad at all. You only need to invest 70pts in this 10” movement unit and now you have a decent flanker that supports the infantry (especially against high elves).

Overall

Not a bad book. I was really worried about power creep in one of GW's flagship armies, but I really don’t see it. I see a slow moving, zero artillery army, that can only control units inside of the General's 12" bubble. Does it suck? No way. I like the downplaying of spam magic, the return of Vamps as the best characters in the game, unique active combat res units, hordes of zombies (not Ghouls!) and the other inexpensive fear driven troops (where fear can actually matter!). Maybe I'll even never see another one of those stupid bunker armies again. Well, that’s really wishing there. With any luck, we'll see creative list building that the Vamps haven't known in generations. Unfortunately (for Vampire players) I predict five more years of winter against Ogres. Hur hur hur

Sorry 40k players, I’ve got nothing for you because GW is in the midst of releasing 6th edition and everyone is busy fighting over whether the leaked pdf is genuine or a hoax. Search for it your curious and remember, if it doesn’t make Space marines the best army, it ain’t true!

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