Saturday, October 16, 2010

Thursday Throwdown Conclusion:

Thursday, Six-Deuce and I met up at Olympic Cards and Comics (OCC) in order to cram as many 1200 point 40K games as we could manage in about 8 hours. Since he and I are still relatively green, games can slow to a crawl when there is a question with regards to rules. Six and I both agree that we would rather take our time in order to learn, and retain, the 5th edition rule set for 40K, rather than blowing through situations that would ultimately lead to rule mistakes.
However, that proved daunting at times over the course of our three games we managed to play. Now, I will concede that Six bested me twice, and I managed a meager draw once. As new as he is, Six is a very sound, and competitive opponent. I really enjoy learning this game with him, because he challenges my performance, my tactics, and knowledge of my units and codex. I remember a year ago how I lamented because the buddy I did know that played 40K had an opposing work schedule, so it made gaming with him extremely difficult. My initial hesitation to seek out strangers willing and patient enough to play games with, and teach, a new player began to waiver. That was until I discovered that Six was interested in diving into 40K as well. Six and I have known one another for years, playing many a video game, MMO, RTS, and FPS together. As I've grown older, I wanted to engage in something a little more tangible. Something that not only offered a creative outlet, but also fed my desire to compete and engage in tactica. Six and I dove into the realm of 40K together- he fielding an awe-inspiring force of Forge World Kriegs Imperial Guard (IG), while I amassed a Blood Angels army inspired largely by the bat-reps posted by a 40K player known as Jawaballs. Six and I also share similar goals with regards to 40K; we both want to eventually play and compete at a tournament level. As grand as that may sound, I'm taking baby steps learning and memorizing the rules, learning the different weapons available to my army of choice, and familiarizing myself with the units at my disposal. Although I experience momentary sparks, I am a long ways off from developing a "synergy" to my game. One of my biggest problems- and it is a personal one, is my initial reaction has been to "turtle" up, or commit to a defensive strategy. It is my nature, and almost the polar opposite of what is necessary to make the Blood Angels army work effectively. To be honest, I hate the thought of committing my marines to the gauntlet- that first turn of shooting.

Getting back to the subject of the three games we played on Thursday, my inability to formulate and commit to an aggressive strategy cost me three games. Now, that isn't a knock against Six who is, as I mentioned earlier, a formidable strategist and opponent. However, I think I defeated myself before I gave Six the opportunity. Not only is that unfair to me, but it is unfair to Six, who deserves to be challenged as well. In the coming days, I am going to attempt to deviate from that course... that instinct, and continuously remind myself that, "the best defense is a good offense".

Wrapping up our gaming session, Six and I discussed our three games and we laughed about one particular incident that occurred during our second game. We were playing capture and control and I had remnants of an assault squad left at my objective, while Six was bearing all he had in the late game (and he had most of his force) to neutralize my forces and take my objective for the victory. My Predator tank had been shaken in the previous turn, so it could not fire it's Lascannon in my next shooting phase. Six's Bane Wolf would clear the distance in the bottom of the turn and place him in a position to fire on my hapless marines the following turn. At that point I would have no defense against his 2+ poison template attack, or the "Space Marine Vacuum" as he calls it. I had to neutralize that tank if I wanted a chance to at least tie the game! Well, I managed to move flat out and ram the rear of his Bane Wolf with my Predator successfully! A six was scored on the damage table marking an explosive end to his "vacuum". We both laughed at the utter absurdity! Ultimately, that helped me to eek out that draw. I'll let Six comment on his favorite event of the night- I'm guessing it might be taking down my Storm Raven, or maybe how his Assassin wiped out an entire squad of my assault marines! It was during our revelry that a fellow gamer introduced himself to us. After introductions, we had an at length discussion about the game, the current gaming scene in the Pacific Northwest and blogs. Six mentioned my blog, "Against the Grain" and that I blog about 40K. Thats when we discovered our new-found friend is a regular contributor on Stelek's blog, Yes the Truth Hurts (YTTH). He goes by the name, Purgatus on YTTH and on the website "War Sound". We chatted with Purgatus at length, and he invited us to drop in at OCC on Tuesdays and Saturdays (days designated for 40K pick-ups). I had a lot of fun chatting with Purgatus, who was a really cool cat. One of these days, I'd like to play a game against him in order to learn a thing or three.

Six and I have scheduled 1500 point games for our session next week. I may bring my camera and actually attempt a written bat-rep...we'll see. In the meantime, I'll post some of the pictures I snapped on the fly with my phone and intersperse them throughout this blog post. Over the next week I will continue to assemble my Blood Angels units and FINALLY base my assault marines. In the meantime, check out War Sound if you have not all ready!

Edit: I almost forgot about that Assault Squad! Deployed onto the table as reserves, the squad held steady in the Razorback transport, driving parallel to my table edge, attempting to gain a bead on one of Six's Vendettas'. The squad piled out in an attempt to add their melta-gun to the vain attempt to pop the Vendetta. Although, I was able to immobilize the transport (and even shoot out a TL Lascannon), it mattered little in Six's shooting turn. The immobilized Vendie managed to disintegrate my Razorback, which led to Six's psyker unit successfully decrease with a -8 modifier! Those troops riding in the Vendie opened up on the assault squad hovering a mere 12 inches away. The assault squad lost enough to force a morale check, which they subsequently failed; only snake eyes would steady whatever conjured horror(s) those psykers' had planted in my stubborn Blood Angel brains (probably a picture of Sanguinius in his angelic underwear or something)...I rolled a four! 
Needless to say I failed the morale test, which forced my assault squad to run the 1/2 inch off the board! Six and laughed our asses off because the whole event was so awesome! Regardless if the special is mine, or incurred by my troops- I love watching unique abilities or attacks succeed! This is primarily due to the fact that I am new to the game...


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