Monday, 28 April 2014

Consistency lines


Hey guys, hope you've been enjoying your reading so far. A while ago, I read Reecius' opening review for the Astra Militarum codex. He wrote something that's run with me for a while, and something I decided I'd finally post about here. The quote in question is this:

"The more variables you eliminate or reduce, the more consistent your results will be."
Now this statement in and of itself is obvious. An AP3 weapon should be better against a tactical marine than an AP5 weapon because the marine is denied his armour save. For example, of course you will fire your vengeance bolt at a marine rather than a poisoned 2+, because you remove a variable! Do you still do the same thing if the marine would get a 4+ cover? Well, yes you do because if he's getting a 4+ cover he might go to ground and that's always better than killing a marine. To be short, this post will feature a lot of mathematics (relatively simple - I'm going to guarantee some of the actual math is wrong, feel free to gripe.) and will focus heavily on not using final wound values, but instead, the gradient line of the wounds to determine how successful a wound is. 


Shooting math is very simple most of the time. Every value should be presented over 6, with very few (mostly to do with armour penetration) requiring more than a single dice. If you're familiar with basic math-hammer, you can skip this section - or not, because I know you'll be there to pick me up on my mistakes, I know you. (you're actually just skimming this section, praying that I've made a mistake!) Anyway, Lets have a look at some in game values and translate them into math. Let's do a boltgun Versus a tactical marine, nice and easy, relatable. 

A boltgun hits a marine on a 3,4,5 or 6 because of BS4, wounds on a 4,5 or 6 because of S4 versus T4 and causes an unsaved wound on a 1 or a 2. 4 of 6 instances result in a hit, 3 of 6 instances result in a wound and 2 of 6 instances translates to an unsaved wound. This can be easily represented as...

4/6 x 3/6 x 2/6. This translates into 24/216 which is 12/108, 6/54, 3/27 and then 1/9. This means, when shooting is exactly average, you can rely on your target tactical marine dropping to 9 boltgun rounds. Tell me if this is not clear enough. 

Let's say you actually shoot the 9 boltgun rounds needed to cause 3 wounds at him, and he saves all 3 - the lucky bastard! His chances of doing that are equal to his armour save (4/6) raised to the power of the number of wounds he had to save - in this case, 3, so (4/6)^3, or roughly 7.4% - a reasonable chance, actually. One in roughly 14 instances will result in him not taking a wound. 

What we're looking at here, is how to represent the fact that if one were to remove the armour save, how much removing that 1/~14 chance will increase your likelihood of causing a wound. For that, we need three things: Graphs, Gradients and Good ol' fashioned university holidays. 

Basic Shooting 

The Graph to the right represents the chances to wound for a range of weapons. The Dark Blue is a boltgun, Red is a lasgun, green is a hot shot lasgun, purple a heavy bolter and the cyan or light blue is a plasma gun. This graph only shows you what seems to be the attrition of wounds as you go through different rolls on the chart. You'll notice a spike for the hotshot lasgun, where it doesn't follow the trend of the other lines in its group - this just shows how much of an impact AP3 actually has on its function.

It is worth noting that technically, these graphs are not suitable for generating gradient lines because the X axis does not show a quantitative value, but a qualitative value. If it bugs you, simply treat "Shot" as X1,0, To hit as X2,0, To wound as X3,0 and after saves as X4,0. As for the meaning of the qualitative terms used, "Shots" is always 5 - I chose to use a baseline because the gradient for 2 plasma gun shots is going to be MUCH smaller than 20 boltguns, rather than just A LOT smaller. Also, 5 shots ensures the graphs are always a consistent scale.

Now we get onto the meat of this topic, Gradients and Consistency lines. Let's compare the gradients of different weapons. In the chart to the right, you can see that, compared to the other weapons, S7AP2 - a plasma gun - has a minute gradient value, being almost half that of a S4AP5 boltgun! Let's see why with some math. Of course, this shows that the ideal gradient is smaller - the smaller the gradient, the more horizontal the consistency line will be. 

As stated above, a marine dies to 11% of boltgun shots, or about 1/9 wounds from boltgun shooting. Some of the values are different for a plasma gun - while shots and "to hit" remain the same (the former for consistency's sake, the latter because your plasma gunner and your boltgunner will be in the same squad and thus, have the same BS. The differences come in wounding, and the fact that plasma guns ignore armour - this is huge because they completely ignore the armour save, effectively ignoring that 1/14 chance that 3 boltgun wounds won't kill a marine. 

Our values are for a boltgun are... 
4/6 x 3/6 x 2/6, or 24/216 (1/9)
Our values for a plasma gun are
4/6 x 5/6 x 6/6 or 120/216 (5/9)! 

This means roughly one plasma gun in two should wound and kill a marine - the odds are actually in the plasma gun's favour, at roughly 56%. This can be seen very clearly in the differences between the two graphs when they're isolated, as you can see to the right. For the record, the first graph shows a boltgun, with the dark red line being the gradient or consistency line of the shooting. 

The second graph shows a plasma gun's shooting. Notice how, in accordance with the remarkably small gradient line, the plasma gun's consistency or gradient line is closer to horizontal than the boltguns?  This is important. To make the matter of interpreting these graphs easier, the more horizontal the dark line is, the more likely the shot is to end in the result you want it to. 

In looking at graphing 40k in future, I implore my readers to use a consistency line, rather than a simple "hit, wound, save" line, like we saw in the first graph - it can be misleading. The Graph below shows all the shooting shown in the first graph, although this shooting is shown with consistency lines. Notice how, rather than blending in with the crowd until the very end, the Hot Shot Lasgun actually is distinctly above its peer weapons in terms of consistency? this is the result we should be looking for. 

Cookies for the person to comment and tell me what's wrong with this graph.

Twin-linked shooting 

So now then, let's go back to the inspiring quote for this post. Reecius wrote...

"The more variables you eliminate or reduce, the more consistent your results will be." 
Aside from the most obvious elimination - the armour save of the model, it is very hard to actually ignore a to hit or to wound roll, with almost no weapons having that capability. What we can do, is that second thing reduce our variables. The most readily available example of this is twin-linking a weapon. While not as good as increasing the number of shots in many cases - usually double shots would be better than a twin-linked weapon, twin-linking brings our variables into the fold. Suddenly, your chance of failing to hit with a single D6 at a 3+ drops from 33% to 11%. This can have a massive effect on the end result - for example, Twin-linked BS4 is actually more likely to hit than straight BS5 - the same being true of everything bar BS1, which is still about 5% worse than straight BS2. This is also why you can't expect to hit reliably with a non-skyfire weapon against a flyer. 

To our left is a graph detailing the same set of weapons, only this time the weapons have a higher to hit rating. (twin linked BS4, so .89 is the modifier rather than .67) What should become apparent quickly is that the difference between the final values is actually impacted so much so that the non S7AP2 shots don't cluster so much as they used to! I'm serious! have a look. Compare this graph to the other one. Go on, I'll give you a minute. 

Now, let's have a look at those gradients. It didn't make much of a difference for shooting that wasn't definitive (definitive meaning a shot that removes the armour save) Boltguns's gradient decreased .05, the lasgun's .03 hot shot lasguns dropped a massive .09, heavy bolters dropped below 1 at .98 (a loss of 9 points) and plasmaguns dropped from a minute .56 to an even smaller .32, or a loss of .24 points. Note that a plasma gun is now a third of a boltgun's gradient, not about half. 

This is excellent evidence of how as you eliminate variables, you become more able to produce consistent results

To see the differences in consistency lines, compare the graph to the right with the graph above, and I've provided a handy comparison graph for the boltgun and plasma gun as provided above, compared to now. 

Cover Saves 

Okay, so now we've seen how a positive variable adjustment impacts upon shooting. Let's look at how a negative one does. I'll have you note that these charts use a twin-linked weapon, so their values correspond to the immediate above, not the first set of graphs. 

The best way to throw a spanner in the works for a plasma gun's 5/9 kill ratio is to give it a cover save to chew through. Suddenly, your tactical marine is gifted with half his resilience in the form of his cover save. How does this affect the plasma gun's shooting, you ask? Let's have a look. Compare the graph to the right with the previous graph regarding the plasma gun. (included here for convenience.) Notice how many less wounds the plasma gun does? It drops from over 3.7 wounds to less than 2.5 with just a 5+ cover save! You can see this in the consistency line - the plasma gun's line now drops at a much sharper angle because of its newfound gradient.  Finally, one plasma gun now kills a marine 10/27 times, dropping from its old value at about 15/27!.

This change can be seen in the gradient value to the right - it has increased from .32 to .63 - almost double. Note that now, it is sitting at just under 60% of the boltgun's gradient value. 

The other interesting change here is the hotshot lasgun and the heavy bolter. Have a look at the graph above and you'll notice they cause the same number of wounds as each other, the heavy bolter being unchanged. This is because they're wound chance value has equalised to be the same. 

A heavy bolter's is
4/6 x 4/6 x 2/6
4/6 x 2/6 x 4/6
They're literally the same, just with one roll requirement being swapped in each case. And this can be seen in their gradient values. 

An Ideal Case

Let's have a look at an absolutely ideal case of shooting consistency. A BS5 model shooting a plasma gun with twin-linked and re-rolls to wound, ignoring both cover and armour. 

Notice how close the green line is to horizontal? Its chances of hitting are 35/36 (or 5/6+(1/6 x 5/6), chance of wounding is 35/36 and it ignores saves completely (assuming no screamers are present) It loses about 5.4% of its original output, total. This results in a gradient value of .07. This is 1225/1296, as a comparison, a plasma gun with no boons outside of BS4 and S7AP2 should do 720/1296, assuming no cover. 

Absolute opposite

The absolute opposite of an ideal case, may at first seem like a screamer with a re-rollable 2+, but it actually isn't. It's a Necron warrior, or immortal - anything with RP. Why? They create a worse variable than an invulnerable save. It's the same as an invulnerable save because you can't ignore it, but it's worse than an invulnerable save because when one passes an invulnerable save, he can be called upon to take another until he is removed as a casualty. Not so with reanimation protocols - you have to hope against hope that the necrons all die, or else the squad can come back to haunt you. This is a fantastic example of a variable you can't actually reduce all that terribly easily (except by destroying the unit of course!) and you can't expect yourself to do so reliably.

Thanks for Reading!

Consistency lines have been fun to build and write about, and analysing these graphs has been a great passtime for me. I hope you find the information I divulge here useful, and creating your own gradient lines against non-generic marine targets. 

As always, you're welcome to email me at, or contact me as scipio africanus on dakkadakka if you're uncertain about anything you've just read. I'd love it if you left a comment in the comments tab, as comments really do tell me people are finding what I'm reading entertaining, and help me to reach a wider audience. 

Friday, 25 April 2014

Painting Exhibitions: Karanak


Karanak makes up one solid choice for 120 points. Nearly useless for Fleshhounds of khorne, he comes into his own leading bloodcrushers, where his scout special rule ensures they keep pace with the fleshounds of khorne. 

Feel free to comment and critique!

The list 

Blood Thirster of Khorne with Exalted Reward and Greater Reward

Herald of Khorne with Exalted Reward on Juggernaut
2 Heralds of Khorne with Greater and lesser reward, exalted Locus on Juggernaut

6 Bloodcrushers with Banner of Blood and Blood Hunter with a lesser reward. 

2 squads of 10 Bloodletters of Khorne, one with bloodreaper

2 squads of 15 Flesh Hounds of Khorne


Magnets for the wound counter

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Reviewing the Daemons Codex, Part 8: Daemon Princes.


Saved the best 'til last, haven't I? Well, No. I've saved the Hardest part 'till last. Because of the nature of the unit, All of the Daemon princes are reasonably strong. I decided it would be best to rate them against each other. To supplement this, I will rate the generic (i.e;, the unmarked daemon prince - I do know that it is illegal,) but I feel it is the best way to write daemon princes into the rest of the review.  Note that, the generic Daemon Prince's God's Boon Bonus should be the same as the overall result for their respective entry in this post, with the overall value for the generic DP using the average value of those god's boon bonuses. As for the individual god entries, I will enter their: 

Price: Price changes drastically based on which prince you take, so it is vital that it is noted down.
Psychic Powers - These are a large part of what makes Daemon Princes so strong, so I feel it would be unreasonable to not rate this power.
Damage output: Daemon Princes are almost exclusively flying monsters. It is imperative that they can cause ranged damage or else their ability to fly is very limiting in terms of usefulness. This will only review ranged damage because all of the daemon princes are competent close combat damage dealers, without exclusion. 
Survivability: This one reviews how survivable the daemon princes are, in comparison to one another. Mostly, this one gives some small bonus to Tzeentch and Nurgle. 
Leader Choice: This one is the overall for the daemon prince's best unlocking character - for example, a tzeentch daemon prince uses Fateweaver's unlock value, while one of khorne or nurgle will always use the blood thirst/guo because they're clearly better choices than their named counterpart.

The final score for the specific daemon prince has been rounded off to the nearest .1 decimal place for simplicity's sake.

Daemon Prince: General Notes.

Relatively cheap Flying Monsterous Creature
4 T5 wounds with a 3+ and a 5++
Access to wings and 3+ armour saves
Access to all manner of rewards
Access to 3 different psychic disciplines, plus the god's personal discipline.
T5 means boltguns can bring him down, and vindicators can potentially flatten him. Never throw one up against a wraithknight, ever.
I've assumed the Daemon Prince will always have a 3+ save and wings. I don't think one can really argue against this - it's just the best way to make the most of your investment. Daemon princes do not pack enough hits or wounds not to be flying, and can't come close to enough damage output to make charging across the board a worthwhile endeavour. Daemon princes do have one weakness, in that they have no access to divination. This is overlookable, but ensures one cannot run a screamer star alongside them.

Price 6/10 They're smack dab on huge points investment. If you're taking one of these guys, you might as well take three. Very dependent on the chosen daemon prince.
Survivability 7/10 I couldn't in my right mind give them a worse score than fateweaver, given that they get a 3+ save, but otherwise they're on par with fateweaver.
Damage Output 9/10 This is VERY subjective, and really depends on the chosen prince. 
Rules 7/10 Again, it depends on the chosen prince, but usually its rules don't hurt it. 
Gods Boon Bonus (Tzeentch) 7.5/10
Gods Boon Bonus (Khorne) 5/10 
Gods Boon Bonus (Nurgle) 7/10 
Gods Boon Bonus (Slaanesh) 7.4/10
Overall 7.1/10 They're a very good unit, but they're very pricey. You get what you pay for, but sometimes you don't pay for enough. 

Tzeentch Daemon Prince 

Can spam out S5 shooting like nobody's business
Reasonably survivable, re-rolling 50% of failed armour saves. 
Most reliable psyker.
Access to two of the most hilarious and fantastic close combat weapons in the game. 
Only Daemon Prince with reliable access to S8 in close combat.
No access to divination makes it hard to run mono-tzeentch, and can't really support screamerstar.
This one is a really reasonable infantry strafer, it's a little strange that it is in fact the best close combatant of the choices when given a greater reward.

Price 6/10 Very expensive. Easily 350 points.
Psychic Powers 7/10 FFoT is great. 
Damage Output 8/10 Very decent, given that it is not what one looks for in a combat unit.
Survivability 8/10 Better than anyone else against small arms.
Leader Choice 8.6/10 Can I get a hell yes? Mr Fateweaver himself.
Overall 7.5/10 Very Strong choice.

Khorne Daemon Prince 

He's a daemon prince.
No Psychic Powers, No Ranged damage unless he gets lucky on rewards. 
Khorne got shafted.

Price 8/10 Very Cheap, But you get what you pay for.
Psychic Powers 0/10 0 access to psychic powers.
Damage Output 3/10 A close combat unit who's being compared to other close combat units that perform at the same rate (or better) than he does, and has no ranged damage output.
Survivability 8/10 So unthreatening he has to be an easy protect.
Leader Choice 6/10 Bloodthirster, great! so, now you get a fantastic unit that makes your khorne daemon prince even more redundant!
Overall 5/10 It's hard to like the Khorne Daemon prince when he doesn't approach useful. 

Nurgle Daemon Prince 

Access to shrouded
AP3 flamer option, or AP2 large blast. Or Haemorrhage on steroids.
Access to Instant death close combat weapon.
Completely outperforms a khorne daemon prince in close combat.
None really. It is fast enough that it doesn't suffer like other nurgle daemons might.
The Nurgle Daemon prince is unique, in that it can go toe to toe with even the toughest opponents. Being a daemon prince, it's got uncharactreistically high initiative, ensuring it almost always strikes first. It can topple any opponent, even a wraithknight, in close combat. 

Price 7/10 Doesn't need psychic powers as much as a tzeentch daemon does, so you can drop off a point or two if you want.
Psychic Powers 7/10 Lots of good 4+ wounding shooting to be had.
Damage Output 6/10 More than khorne, less than tzeentch.
Survivability 8/10 Decent, especially given he can usually set himself up with a 3+ against any shooting.
Leader Choice 6.8/10 A good one that lets your daemon prince hide in reserve if you wish.
Overall 7/10 He's solid.

Slaanesh Daemon Prince

Pumps out S6 shooting
Access to a S6 rending beam (meh)
Potentially Stops your enemy overwatching as he launches into combat.
Can move very quickly, even for a daemon prince.
No defensive traits
Lash + Vector strike can be very dangerous.

Price 8/10 Read: Nurgle Daemon Prince, add a bit.
Psychic Powers 6/10 Not as good as Nurgle or Tzeentch
Damage Output 10/10 Most reliable damage output from a daemon prince
Survivability 7/10 threatening and has no bonuses for it, still a daemon prince
Leader Choice 6/10 KoS suffers from having his wings clipped.
Overall 7.4/10 Reliable. 


This concludes my review of the Chaos Daemons codex. I've learned some things, and I've changed my mind about certain things several times. Our overall winner in this codex is tied, between Fateweaver and the Seekers of Slaanesh at 8.6. I suppose it's worth noting that they have a higher score than my three winners in the Space Marine Codex, who scored three-way with 8.4. 

Monday, 21 April 2014

Painting Exhibitions: The Bloodthirster


So a while ago I started playing Daemons. I'm sure you've at least glanced over my review of that codex. Anyway, I decided I'd play a Monokhorne list, and here's my warlord for it. 

He's named ambrose after my orange cat. "Of course he has cats", right?

The list:

Blood Thirster of Khorne with Exalted Reward and Greater Reward

Herald of Khorne with Exalted Reward on Juggernaut
2 Heralds of Khorne with Greater and lesser reward, exalted Locus on Juggernaut

6 Bloodcrushers with Banner of Blood and Blood Hunter with a lesser reward. 

2 squads of 10 Bloodletters of Khorne, one with bloodreaper

2 squads of 15 Flesh Hounds of Khorne

The Balro- I mean, Blood Thirster

Friday, 18 April 2014

Painting Exhibition: Sternguard Veterans


Some veterans I painted up for the abandoned sternguard army idea. Hope you like! 

The Models:

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Reviewing the Daemons Codex, Part 7: True Heavy Support


Hi Guys, I apologise for the continually late posts, I've been unable to post sooner because of university commitments. Anyway, I'm finished with uni for the term, and so I had some spare time to talk Chaos Demons. In this section, I'm looking at the Soul Grinder and the less memorable Heavy Support sections. It's worth noting I am not reviewing Daemon Princes in this section. This is because I feel Daemon princes are a very complex set of units to discuss and so, I cannot do them justice while keeping the post thoughtful and succinct. So, I will be reviewing them in a separate article. 

Soul Grinders 

Love your fluff, hate your model. 

AV13 shell with 4 HP and a 5++.
Decent shooting walker that's unlikely to have been erased by the end of the game.
Decent in combat, getting potentially 6 attacks OTC
Decent ranged shooter, although BS3 lets it down somewhat. 
None to speak of. Maybe the model is a bit awful.  
Notes: Tzeentch
Tzeentch lets you re-roll failed invulns of 1. Not fantastic, but usable. Mostly keeps the Old boy cheap. 
Notes: Khorne 
Furious charge on a model that already strikes at S10. There's a reason it's free. 
Notes: Nurgle
Shrouded is potentially fantastic on this thing, also limits your opponents assault capabilities because they don't get charge bonuses against it. Slow and purposeful relegates it to a shooting role, ensuring it can get quite pricey. Gets interesting if you run them deep striking with nurgle plaguedrones, you can get them in combat turn 3.
Notes: Slaanesh
Probably your best bet, you can cover around 13" a turn, they'll hit turn 4 at the very latest, and with fleet they're bound to get into assault. They also provide a very solid firesoak for your army.

Price 8/10 Very Competitively priced. 185 points for a battlecannon that won't die? That's fantastic.
Survivability 8/10 Again, very solid. Soul grinders with a 3+ cover save won't be shifted. Worth noting that they're very rarely not going to come to blows given that they ignore stunned on a 2+. 
Damage Output 7/10 They strike hard in combat, but they get quagmired easily. You have to screen them carefully. 
Rules 7/10 Daemonic resilience is fantastic, and Daemon ensures soul grinders are unsurpassed in terms of competitive walkers (except by knights, but I like to pretend they don't exist)
God's boon bonus: Tzeentch 6/10 Not the worst bet, but they don't gain anything.
God's boon bonus: Khorne 1/10 The only boon here is that your model is cheaper than everyone elses.
God's boon bonus: Nurgle 7/10 Solid. It's hard to hide a Soul grinder, but if you get it right, it could carry the game for you.
God's boon bonus: Slaanesh 9/10 Makes a no-shooting soul grinder very quick, and that's pretty cool.
Overall Tzeentch 7.2/10 Reasonable, reasonably priced. The Soul Grinder carries its weight because it is what it is, not because of tzeentch.
Overall Khorne 6.2/10 The weakest of the lot, but still hits for knocks when it smacks into combat. 
Overall Nurgle 7.4/10 Solid, with a solid shooting platform in mind, or a survivable tanker. Depends on the availability of large terrain when you play. 
Overall Slaanesh 7.6/10 It can make up for it if it screws up the deepstrike, and it's a reasonable unit starting first turn on the board. You'll go far striking with one of these. 

Everything Else

Skull Cannon of Khorne

S8 shooting
Makes charging more reliable
Can soak overwatch for other units
Good luck having it on the table past turn one.
The Skull Cannon is, in theory, a fantastic tool that lets your units have the frag grenades they're not allowed. Shame it'll never survive turn two.

Price 6/10 Price is justifiable for what it does, It's just too much for what you get in the end.
Survivability 4/10 It needs to not be Open topped, and it needs an extra hull point. Then you might be looking at something that can survive the first turn. 
Damage Output 6/10 Marginal, given AP5. Mostly you use it to get the assault off effectively.
Rules 3/10 It'll be using daemon of khorne far often than it should be.
God's boon bonus 1/10 They could've at least made the hammer of wrath S8. Then, at least it could kill some marines instantly.
Overall 4/10 It's not good. You'd get a better weapon out of a soul grinder of khorne, for only 10 extra points.

Burning Chariot of Tzeentch

3 BS4 Lascannons OR a S5AP3 flamer!*
* Oh wait, both of them are heavy. OH WELL.
AV10 chassis with 3 HP relying on a 5++.
100 points.
I guess at least it gets d6 S6 Hammer of wrath OH WAIT THEY GIVE YOUR OPPONENT FNP. 
No but seriously, they're awful.

Price 3/10 A 10/10/10 HP3 chariot with no reliable way to assault, or shoot? At least its sorta cheap. A sentinel does more, mind.
Survivability 8/10 It's so survivable because NOBODY would ever shoot at this thing, assuming first blood has been decided. 
Damage Output 2/10 A waste of time and space. The weapon could be reliable, but the minute range and heavy typing reduce its usability very drastically. A 100 point devastator squad if you succeed
Rules 1/10 In this case, the rules bone the tank. 
God's boon bonus 3/10 It doesn't really make much use of the tzeentch rules past the first blood decider.
Overall 3/10 The only thing that makes this piece of it even remotely good is the fact that it's so bad that it'll never be killed.

Seeker Cavalcade (Seeker Chariot)
Very cool take on the Seeker. Sourced from CMON (score 7.7)

Fast status and minute price ensures that the seeker chariots can get there quickly enough, or be expendable failing to do so.
AV11 ensures that your opponent needs to put something stronger than a multi-laser into this unit, although this may make it less reliable as a damage soak given that a slaanesh list running seekers needs something to draw small arms fire off their units. I suuggest driving backwards to attract boltguns to the fleshy AV10 on the rear.
Can get up to 12 S6 rending attacks, and that's pretty cool (Plus the Exalted alluress' attacks)
Weak chassis
Doesn't get the fantastic soulscent rule which would make three of these with a greater reward on eacch bloke an autotake. 
Good luck placing them on the field.

Price 8/10 Priced a little higher than a rhino, it's almost as survivable (about .33 hullpoints less survivable) and does way more in assault. 
Survivability 4/10 AV11 can actually be to its weakness, but it's reasonable given the price of the chassis
Damage Output 7/10 a 40 point unit that can reasonably do some wounds in combat.
Rules 7/10 Fast and Flesh-shredder are fantastic for this platform. 
God's boon bonus 7/10 Makes very solid use of  rending and fleet. 
Overall 6.6/10 Reasonable, if you hate soulgrinders.

Seeker Cavalcade (Exalted Seeker Chariot)

Read: Seeker Chariot. Add 2 HP. and 2D6 attacks.
Makes an excellent firesoak because it actually hurts in close combat.
Almost double the tank with no real survivability boon. (yes, two more hull points, but your opponent WILL blow it up.)
Again, a pain to place. Solid outside of this fault.

Price 7/10 Very competitive pricing.
Survivability 5/10 Better than the standard, but not overpoweringly so.
Damage Output 8/10 average 14 S6 rending attacks on the charge.
Rules 7/10 Read: Seeker Chariot
God's boon bonus 7/10  Read: Seeker Chariot.
Overall 7/10 Again, a solid unit. Not competition for the Soul grinder, though. Two seeker chariots and one of these could strike pretty hard while being relatively cheap at 185 points. 

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Characters may have models, but models with character are the best.


I've been busy moaning over the new guard codex, waiting to get it today. I decided I'd have a look at minis (as one is wont to do) and I stumbled across Nork's fantastic visage. I thought I'd share.


Nork Deddog's new model, (left) is part of the new Ogryn kit from G-dub.

He's such a characterful ogryn to start, but once you start *really* looking at ol' norkie, you start to notice he's got a few jokes in him.

1. The Cigar.

He reminds me so much of creed with that cigar. That and the unbrushed teeth on that particular paint job just make the ol' bloke seem so at home brandishing an oversized assault rifle and knife as long as his head.

2. That Knife.

As I said, It's as long as his goddamn head. How could you not love that? Also, the grag grenade that's far too large, hanging from his hip. Surely they should get S4AP6 if they throw that?!

3. The Commisar's cap and skull.

Seems like GW just putting in an extra skull, eh? Think again. For those of you unfamiliar with Nork, he's the most bodyguardiest of bodyguards available to the first army to get real bodyguards (before tau got their body guards to actually, y'know, guard bodies.) Nork takes his bodyguarding duties even more seriously.

The Fifth edition codex reads thus:

[quote=5th edition Imperial Guard Codex]
Nork is extremely protective and very loyal to his commander, so much so that he (and his body Odour) will stick to the officer like glue. Nork has the Look out - Arghh!! [b](automatic look out sirs)[/b] as detailed on page 31. In addition, a commissar (of either rank) will never shoot nork as a result of the summary execution rule. If a Commissar  Shoots Nork's commander, however, Nork immediately retailiates - Remove the Commissar from Play.

So, now you can see that the commissar's cap is not just a nicknack, but a reference to old (and hopefully, given their characterfulness, remaining) rules.

I don't know. I really Liked this model. It just sung to me unlike any other model has before as being hilarious.


Anyone else found a model with a few jokes only players of the army will get? Show and explain!

Friday, 11 April 2014

Painting Exhibition: Stormtalon


Stormtalons are a nice idea, but an awful model in my opinion. The assault cannon is an awful size, and the missiles are in the wrong place, but thanks to this being warhammer I can change that. As you can see, I moved the Assault Cannons to the wings and shifted the Missile Launcher to the chin. Hope you like it!


Wednesday, 9 April 2014

A Rule to Remember 1. Ordnance Weapons.


A Rule to Remember is a post themed towards teaching how rules should be played, followed by my own and common misconceptions about the rule, and why we have those misconceptions. Note these are not going to be rules that are up to debate, for example, it will not include such rules arguments as Infiltrate because of a Character and Corbulo gaining a 1+ FNP. Today, we will be reviewing the Ordnance Weapon Type. If this is well received, it may become a common feature. 

I will try to structure the A Rule To Remember Posts in such a way that they give a detailed understanding of the rule so that it is easier to remember. This will be achieved (or rather, attempted) by breaking up individual statements within the rule's paragraph, and then stating why they are important. If any other rules become important, they will be paraphrased to only include what is needed to communicate the correct method of play.

The Rule 

1. When Shooting a model with an ordnance weapon fires the number of times indicated in its profile after its type. 2. A non-vehicle Model carrying an Ordnance weapon cannot fire it in the shooting phase if he moved in the preceding movement phase and cannot fire it as snap shots. 3. Furthermore, If a non-vehicle model fires an ordnance weapon then the massive recoil from the ordnance weapon means the model cannot fire other weapons that phase, nor will it be able to charge in the proceeding Assault phase. 4. Ordnance Weapons hit with such force that when you roll to penetrate a vehicle's armour with an ordnance weapon, roll two dice instead of one and pick the highest result!

The Misconception 

So, what's the issue here? Mostly, it has to deal with Vehicles who carry Ordnance. The misconception being that players believe a Leman russ or a vindicator for example, can only fire the one weapon when firing ordnance, because, y'know, it's ordnance. However, the current rule does not say this.  Let's Break it down to the pertinent parts. 
1. When Shooting a model with an ordnance weapon fires the number of times indicated in its profile after its type. 2. A non-vehicle Model carrying an Ordnance weapon cannot fire it in the shooting phase if he moved in the preceding movement phase and cannot fire it as snap shots. 3. Furthermore, If a non-vehicle model fires an ordnance weapon then the massive recoil from the ordnance weapon means the model cannot fire other weapons that phase, nor will it be able to charge in the proceeding Assault phase. 4. Ordnance Weapons hit with such force that when you roll to penetrate a vehicle's armour with an ordnance weapon, roll two dice instead of one and pick the highest result!
So, you can see only Statement Two and Three matter here, since the First is obvious and the fourth isn't a part of this misconception, nor is it a misconception. So, then let's have a look at the Second statement.
This new development gives new meaning to the
phrase "Your Vindicator's on fire!"

2. A non-vehicle Model carrying an Ordnance weapon cannot fire it in the shooting phase if he moved in the preceding movement phase and cannot fire it as snap shots. 
So this Rule immediately Excludes any Vehicle. For Simplicity, A vehicle is Defined as any unit that would draw rules from the Vehicle Section, so for clarity, that's any unit with an armour value. This therefore includes Walkers (the Defiler, we're looking at your godawful silhouette) and more importantly, Leman Russ. A side note is that this means Ordnance weapons can never be fired in overwatch (except on walkers, who are specifically allowed to fire overwatch), nor can they be fired at Flyers or FMC if the user is not a vehicle (although, most ordnance weapons are blasts or large blasts. With that understood, let's have a look at Statement Three.

Shame the one rule you didn't get wasn't more impactful.
3. Furthermore, If a non-vehicle model fires an ordnance weapon then the massive recoil from the ordnance weapon means the model cannot fire other weapons that phase, nor will it be able to charge in the proceeding Assault phase.
So this is the crucial point here. This rule is directly targeted at Non Vehicle Models can potentially fire more than one weapon and have an ordnance weapon. At mind, the only example I can think of is a nova Charging Riptide with an ion accelerator, so this isn't huge. Most importantly, Vehicles are clearly excluded from being affected by this rule. Also worth of note is that, a Vehicle Model does not need the Relentless rule to be allowed to fire his Ordnance weapon and assault, given that he is not included in this set of rules.

As Sam Moershel Pointed out very correctly, The Rules that impact Vehicles Models when firing ordnance are listed on page 71, under "Vehicles and Ordnance Weapons". Here it makes it clear that such weapons can be fired in addition to other weapons, but that the other weapons must snap fire to do so. I thought about simply deleting this post given that this is the case, but for integrity's sake I'll leave it up.

It's worth noting still, that only a tank may fire an Ordnance round as a snap shot (assuming such a round is not blast or large blast, or template.), although this may be cause for a HYWPI argument. 

Where did it come from?

So now we have a look at why this problem exists. Firstly, it's worth noting last edition, there didn't exist a unit that had access to an ordnance weapon. The Rule for Ordnance in the shooting phase was so set on this being the case that ordnance weapon rules were relegated to the Vehicles section in the fifth edition rule book. So, what did Page 58 of the 5th ed rulebook read?

Vehicles: Vehicles Shooting: Ordnance Weapons "Firing a massive ordnance weapons requires the attention of all the gunners of the vehicle, so no other weapons may be fired that turn (not even defensive weapons!) In return, they are better at penetrating armour (see page 60) Unless their Profile specified otherwise, all Ordnance blast weapons use the large blast marker."
Page 60, if you're curious, just told us to roll 2D6 and pick the highest. So, what was pertinent here? Firstly, Ordnance weapons were only available to Vehicles, meaning all Ordnance rules had to affect vehicles with ordnance weapons. When we cut the fat from the rule, we're left with this:

Vehicles: Vehicles Shooting: Ordnance Weapons "Firing a massive ordnance weapons requires the attention of all the gunners of the vehicle, so no other weapons may be fired that turn (not even defensive weapons!) In return, they are better at penetrating armour (see page 60) Unless their Profile specified otherwise, all Ordnance blast weapons use the large blast marker."
So you can see here, clear as daylight, that ordnance did have the affect in fifth edition, but not anymore, as sixth edition shows us.

This has been my First A Rule To Remember. If you've got any criticism of the structure, be sure to talk comment or send me an email. If you'd like me to review a specific rule, be sure to email it to me so I can get started on an article for it!


Fifth Edition Ordnance: P. 29, First Column Last paragraph - Weapons: Weapon Types: Ordnance Weapons. 

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Reviewing the Daemons Codex, Part 6: Fast Attack


Hi Guys, I'm sorry for the late submission. I've had a bit on my plate with University and that always means I push the blog away from my mind. However, I haven't forgotten that I still need to do finish off this review! Without Further Adieu, I bring to you, my simple review of the Chaos Daemon's Fast Attack Section. 

The Beasts of Chaos:

Screamers of Tzeentch
T4 with 2 wounds
Reasonable ability in Close Combat, Even if they don't use Lamprey's Bite
Even without a 2+ save, can stand up to a reasonable amount of damage. 
Good luck if you play Scouring.
Although they're pretty much impossible to erase, they don't do very much. Expect to lose an objective to them, or to be unable to touch an objective in the scouring, but not much else. 
Look, we all Know how screamer star works, must I explain it?

Okay, so you get a 4++ from Div's Forewarning, then grimoire. Hope you have good ol' fatey for that re-roll you need to badly. Are we done? thought so. Alternatively, get Bel'akor if you're not playing too much tau. 

Price 8/10 It's correct.
Survivability 10/10 In terms of non-gimmick survivability, still about a 7. 
Damage Output 5/10 It can do it, just not a lot. Better used to tie up a key squad.
Rules 7/10 Lamprey's Bite makes them decent, if not fantastic. Slashing attack is give or take. 
God's Boon Bonus 10/10 Assuming you make use of the aforementioned Blue Chee- I mean, gimmick.
Overall 8/10 Fantastic unit, but not the top of the pops.

Flesh Hounds of Khorne
T4 with 2 wounds, 8 points per wound
Very decent close combat unit. 
They're tough enough to require S8 to remove, but far too cheap to make the S8 worthwhile. 
One of the only units in the codex that can ride without T6 or a 3++. 
Not very threatening to certain targets. A riptide charging into one neuters them completely, although at the cost of never using that riptide again.
Not the most fantastic damage dealers. 
40 T4 wounds is nothing to be laughed at, and that's what these guys bring to the table. You don't need a grimoire on them necessarily and if you throw in an exalted locus herald you can make them a very effective unit. The Scout move ensures they can hit their target turn two without fail and can always absorb the fire for something more valuable.

Price 10/10 Fantastic for their Price, Being only second to Furies in terms of price per wound, they bring so much more to the table than furies ever could. 
Survivability 8/10 Simply Fantastic. The Ideal throw-away is hard to erase and pisses off your opponent as a nuisance. That is what Khorne Dogs do. 
Damage Output 7/10 Not Fantastic, but they deal it. 
Rules 8/10 Good With Hatred, but Furious Charge isn't pivotal except against the odd AV11 OTR tank. What makes them fantastic is scout, presenting them as a more immediate threat than your real problem - the Crushers or Seekers. 
God's Boon Bonus 7/10 They Bear that one thing they get with pride, but they don't make it fantastic. Also, they'll almost never use it as you usually charge multiple things with them. 
Overall 8/10 They're Fantastic. 

Plague Drones of Nurgle
T5 with 3 wounds
Extremely fast for a unit with slow and purposeful. 
Hits reasonably hard in close combat. 
Reasonably Survivable. 
Deathly afraid of S10, more than even blood crushers of khorne. 
They don't hit hard enough to justify their price. 
They have god awful models
These guys are best used as a way to get a great unclean one and a tonne of plaguebearers into the fray quickly with their Icon. 

Price 4/10 It's a bit over the reasonable limit.
Survivability 9/10 They're tough, but they aren't cheap enough to make it a good price.
Damage Output 7/10 Faltering, but they do okay. 
Rules 7/10 They make very good use of Cavalry/jetpack.
God's Boon Bonus 8/10 Shrouded is their friend, if they can cling to cover, they almost don't need the grimoire.
Overall 7/10 They're the worst option in this section of the codex, But any other Codex would love them intensely.

Seekers of Slaanesh
Fantastic amount of , Low to medium Quality attacks that can drown almost any squad under their weight. 
Really Cheap
Very fast. 
Make Excellent use of Rending and 9" runs.
T3 with one wound ensures they need to be your grimoire. 
one squad is cheap, but it will take casualties. 
They don't like hard-hitting opponents, but you need to throw them at them. If your opponent's packing a half-decent close combat unit, prepare to take casualties. 
These guys work fanastically in conjunction with 2 squads of fleshounds of khorne.

Price 10/10 Fantastic given their strengths.
Survivability 4/10 You have to rely on oversaturation fo targets for them to work. 
Damage Output 10/10 One of the best, but no way of dealing with AV13+. 
Rules 9/10 They make fantastic use of their Cavalry rule.
God's Boon Bonus 10/10 Again, they make fantastic use of the D6+6" runs, meaning they can keep pace with khorne flesh hounds very easily. 
Overall 8.6/10 

Hellflayer of Slaanesh
Uh... 7 S6 rending attacks is okay I guess. Can get S3AP2 attacks on the Alluress I guess. 
2 HP, AV11.
Doesn't have the wounds to make use of Soulscent.
Just... don't.

Price 4/10 25 would be too much. 
Survivability 1/10 First Blood is easy with this tank. 
Damage Output 4/10 Mediocre given its price and competition.
Rules 5/10 soulscent has potential, but it still isn't worth it.
God's Boon Bonus 3/10 Rending is nice I guess?
Overall 3.6/10 Still a better take than the masque. 

Chaos Furies
Cheap T35++ wounds
can be a good firesoak but is an easy kill point in scouring.
It doesn't do anything. One Daemonic instability test and they're losing 5. 
They have potential, it just doesn't shine when things like flesh hounds and seekers exist.

Price 8/10 They're well priced, they just don't do enough. On a side note, a 20 Chaos Furies is 120 points and is better than 5 assault marines.
Survivability 2/10 Piss Poor. 
Damage Output 4/10 Poor, but you aren't taking them for that, are you? But I mean, what are you taking them for? Better than Assault Marines I guess. 
Rules 4/10 They make excellent use of the 5++. 
God's Boon Bonus 0/10 I wouldn't bother marking them. 
Overall 3.8 Still a better take than the Masque, on par or better than assault marines. 

Friday, 4 April 2014

Painting Exposition: A Crimson Fist Rhino


These is the Rhino for the tactical marine squad I showed off last week. I really liked doing the dirt and grime around the tracks, and it's done completely without weathering powders. IF someone shows some interest, I'll be sure to share the method. 

The Models