OK, firstly an apology. I know I said something rash about updating this blog every Monday, however the past week I’ve been on a bit of a road trip for work, so that didn’t happen.
However, on the plus side, this has enabled me to be in England for the Sad Muppet Society’s annual Warhammer 40000 tournament, A Small Matter of Honour; this year held at Triple Helix Wargames in Westury, Wiltshire some miles past Stone Hedge…
Regular readers will know I brought Grey Knights again this year, mainly because there are not many of them, so they are easy to transport.
A Small Matter of Honour features four games at two different points level, 1250 and 1750 points. At 1250 I had Coteaz, ten purifiers, two units of five normal grey knights, a Dreadnought, a Stormraven and a Land Raider.
My 500 point reinforcements added a Grand Master, five terminators, and a henchman squad. In total my army has 34 models so it is, err, compact.
On the plus side, this should make my games fast, speaking of which…
My first opponent was Doug Dowling whom I know well, but haven’t played for several years, so accordingly our master of ceremonies, Roger, kindly organised a grudge match for us.
The first game was at 1250 points, which I thought might be challenging because I’ve never played this army at this level, and I only have two troop choices. Happily, this game was an annihilation mission with dawn of war deployment. Doug brought is really pretty Thousand Sons army.
I chose sides and took first turn and charged my Stormraven and Land Raider straight into the middle of the table. Doug strolled on to the battlefield from the board edge and proceeded to not kill things, which was nice.
In the following turn I moved up and disembarked the purifiers and dreadnought, and didn’t do very much. Surviving the assaulting Obliterators, my Stormraven turbo boasted behind Doug’s Land Raider (which blew up), teleported in my two Strike squads right into the midst of the Thousand Sons.
This was a mistake as apparently Thousand Sons have AP3 bolters. I forgot this.
These ten marines were my casualties for this game as my following turns were devastating. In the end I tabled Doug in the seventh turn.
Mr Coteaz I presume…
My second 1250 point game was against my first Grey Knight opponent of the day, Lewis. In fairness, Lewis only had three actual Grey Knights, a Techmarine and two ‘Psyrifle’ dreadnoughts, because like myself he had Inquisitor Coteaz leading the party.
This was unfortunate, as under the rules for ASMOH, if the same special character appears on both sides, they are both removed as casualties before the game starts. As I wrote this rule, quite some years ago it should be said, I thought it was rather ironic it affected me.
Anyway, Lewis’ army was based around two Stormravens filled with nasty scoring henchmen, and our mission was a modified version of Seize Ground called Booby Trap!
Over the course of the game, the objectives moved or exploded until only one remained. My very aggressive strategy in this mission paid off as I removed one of Lewis’ Stormravens on the first turn, and locked one of his dreadnoughts with mine on the second.
Lewis did have a late surge throwing a unit of assassins and crusaders into my troops, however I managed to beat them off (shooting them helped a lot). In the end it was down to the two remaining member off one Strike squad to whizz off in my Stormraven to claim victory.
After lunch, Dave OJ, my normal sparring partner, was second in the tournament and on table one. Given that he won VonWar a few weeks before no one was very surprised. However, I was rather chuffed to be fourth, and on table two.
The second special mission of the day was another Seize Ground variant using five objectives, one in the centre of the table and one in the centre of each quarter. Now my Grey Knights do not excel at objective missions so imagine my delight when I learned I faced Dark Eldar. Umm, tricky…
The blow was softened because George’s Dark Eldar are beautifully painted (he went on to win best army). Anyway, George deployed and a chose to keep my entire army in reserve rather than try to seize the initiative.
This decision some what backfired because my Stormraven (with Coteaz, ten purifiers, and a dreadnought), did not arrive until turn four. This gave George plenty of time to pick apart the rest of my army.
However, when the Stormraven finally arrived, it and its passengers made an appropriate mess but unfortunately it was too late and George won by one objective point.
Next door, Dave did not do much better against the Sister army that went on to win the tournament.
I was back on table four for the last game of the day and my opponent was, Mr David Offen-James, complete with the Grey Knight army that comprehensively beat me just five weeks ago. This one…
Again, we had another kill point mission. My army only had 11 kill points, but Dave’s only had 8. This was going to be interesting.
I won first turn and side, and deployed the Land Raider and Stormraven (didn’t take long). Dave then lined up his horde of Grey Knight infantry. He promptly stole the initiative, and then Coteaz make him unsteal it!
Learning my lesson from last time, I moved quickly to one flank and the middle of the board. Suffice to say I would not be able to win a shooting game against THAT many psycannons.
Dave promptly blew up my Stormraven, which was annoying. My Dreadnought killed a Dreadknight, but exploded at the same time. However my purifiers got into a large strike squad and slaughtered them. In return, they got shot, and then stepped on by a second Dreadknight.
The turning point I think was Dave losing his terminators (ten of them) to my Grand Master and a Strike Squad after making no invulnerable saves at all. At the same time the rest of his army peppered my Land Raider with psycannon bolts to no effect.
This was perhaps balanced by my ‘to hit’ rolls in close combat which were frankly rubbish. After four rounds of combat Dave’s remaining Dreadknight was still tied in combat with my terminators.
The final result was a draw, six kill points each. Considering our last encounter, I’m quite happy with that.
And so the dust settled
When the final results went up, I was twelfth overall, but more importantly I had four great games against four great opponents; and I also got to catch up with loads of friends I haven’t seen for a long time.
Doug Dowling won (very well deserved) best sportsman and Dave OJ won a Necron Battleforce in the raffle.
I really enjoyed playing this Grey Knights list which surprised me. I suspect this is because I have learnt to play them in a far more aggressive style than I’m use to.
This will be my last tournament in the UK for quite a while, so next up will probably a more local event. But first, I need to get home…