Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Our Canhammer Team Tournament Lists!

The CanHammer Team Tournament is coming up in 2 weeks. Lists were due in today. Here they are!

Logan, 1 Plus Armour, Warriors of Chaos

520 Daemon Prince: General, Level 4, Lore of Slaanesh, Daemon of Slaanesh, Chaos Armour, Daemonic Flight, Chaos Familiar, Scaled Skin, Soul Feeder, Charmed Shield, Dragonbane Gem, Sword of Striking

269 Exalted Hero on Daemonic Mount: Battle Standard Bearer, Mark of Tzeentch, Barding, Poisonous Slime, Halberd, Shield, Potion of Speed, Talisman of Preservation

115 Chaos Chariot: Mark of Slaanesh

115 Chaos Chariot: Mark of Slaanesh

385 20 Chaos Warriors: Mark of Tzeentch, Full Command, Standard of Discipline, Shields

445 5 Skullcrushers of Khorne: Musician, Standard Bearer, War Banner, Ensorcelled Weapons

275 Chimera: Flaming Breath, Regeneration

275 Chimera: Flaming Breath, Regeneration

Total: 2,399

Nick, 1 Plus Armour, High Elves

320 Loremaster of Hoeth: Level 2, Book of Hoeth, Sword of Might, Shield of the Merwyrm

290 Archmage: Level 4, Lore of High Magic, Dispel Scroll, Talisman of Preservation

150 Noble: Battle Standard Bearer, Ogre Blade, Enchanted Shield, Dragon Armour

398 16 Silver Helms: Full Command, Shields

105 5 Ellyrian Reavers: Musician, Bows

105 5 Ellyrian Reavers: Musician, Bows

450 25 Phoenix Guard: Full Command, Razor Standard

240 Frostheart Phoenix

240 Frostheart Phoenix

50 Great Eagle

50 Great Eagle

Total: 2,398

Andrew, 1 Plus Armour, Chaos Dwarves

390 Sorcerer-Prophet: Level 4, Lore of Hashut, The Mask of the Furnace, Dispel Scroll

205 Infernal Castellan: Battle Standard Bearer, Talisman of Endurance, Enchanted Shield, Ironcurse Icon, Black Hammer of Hashut

155 Daemonsmith Sorcerer: Level 2, Lore of Metal, Ruby Ring of Ruin

58 Hobgoblin Khan on Giant Wolf: Light Armour, Spear

58 Hobgoblin Khan on Giant Wolf: Light Armour, Spear

403 28 Chaos Dwarf Infernal Guard: Full Command, War Banner

394 21 Chaos Dwarf Infernal Guard: Full Command, Pistol, Great Weapons, Razor Standard

310 Iron Daemon War Engine: Hellbound

210 Hellcannon

210 Hellcannon

Total: 2,393

Dany, 1 Plus Armour, Vampire Counts

511 Vampire Lord: Level 4, Lore of Vampires, Red Fury, Quickblood, Sword of Striking, Enchanted Shield, Scroll of Shielding, Talisman of Preservation, Potion of Strength

165 Wight King: Battle Standard Bearer, Nightshroud, Seed of Rebirth, Great Weapon

90 Necromancer: Level 1, Lore of Vampires, Dispel Scroll

240 39 Skeleton Warriors: Full Command, Banner of Swiftness

140 45 Zombie Horde: Standard Bearer

140 45 Zombie Horde: Standard Bearer

40 5 Dire Wolves

40 5 Dire Wolves

304 8 Crypt Horrors

240 3 Morghast Harbingers

45 Spirit Host

225 Terrorgheist

220 Mortis Engine

Total: 2,400

This event is using ETC comp, so the lists reflect that. After having seen some of the other lists, I think we're in for a very fun event!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

ND Open VII - Nick's perspective - End of Day 2 and Wrap Up

I won't lie and say I wasn't a little down leaving game 5 and going into the final game of tournament. There was no chance of me winning the tournament or winning the little internal competition that Logan, Dany and myself were having. I can't remember exactly where everyone was going into game 6 by I do know that I was trailing behind them.

Game 6 - Lizards vs Undead Legions

Still, I decided I was going to have fun and walked up to the next table. My next opponent was extremely polite and cheerful... unlike his army. Walking up and seeing his army I thought, hands down, I will get massacred. He was running Undead Legions, here's a run down of his list:

- Manfred Mortarch from the End Times: Nagash book
- Strigoi Ghoul King
- Vampire hero
- 30-40 zombie block
- 20 zombie block
- 2-3 units of dire wolves
- 10 Skeleton Archers
- 10 Skeleton Archers
- 2 terrorgheists
- Casket of Souls

The reason I thought I was going to be massacred was that I did not have too much to deal with the terrorgheists, particularly since they can follow Mannfred around and reliably march 20 inches a turn screaming away all my important characters. Without long range shooting, or good magic missiles this was going to be difficult, never mind taking care of Mannfred and the handful of other vampires in the list. Oh well, let's get 'er done.

My basic deployment strategy was to keep a tight deployment so that everyone's benefits from the Slann's leadership but also spread out enough so he may feel threatened by the poison and be somewhat timid with his terrorgheists. It worked somewhat. He ended deploying a heavy flank with his vamp bunker, Mannfred, one terrorgheist to my right, while the smaller zombie unit, some dogs, the casket and the other terrorgheist to my left. Up until this point in the tournament my ripperdactyls have been significantly under performing and I didn't expect that to change this game. I didn't quite know yet what I wanted to threaten with them so I placed them roughly mid-board so that I could maximize my options. Once deployment was finished I threw a toad on the terrorgheist to my left, explained what it did to my opponent, and hoped that this would scare him and make him timid with him. We made a couple of vanguards including moving my Ripperdactyls up and my terradons, shook hands and rolled for turn 1.

My opponent got the first turn. To my right he was eager to get in, start screaming and death magic the crap out of me. To my left, and my surprise, he moved his second terrorgheist back slightly concerned about the ripperdactyls. I guess my plan worked. The remainder of his turn was a little uneventful and we continued on. My turn 1 came and I measured the distance between my Ripperdactyls and his terrorgheist. No charge there. I inched them up slightly but made sure to keep some skinks around just in case he decided to spring forward and engage. My scar-vet on my far left flank moved up and it was his turn to clear some chaff. Seeing as this was the last game in the tournament, I had the "go big or go home" mentality and pushed the Temple Guard as far as I could towards his vamp bunker with the saurus not far behind and the cavalry right next to them on the right. Magic did not accomplish much for me.

Turn 2, Mannfred and Terrorgheist were doing a good job of murdering skinks and a scar-vet on my right. I had thrown him out far to the right to at least keep Mannfred and the Terrorgheist away for a bit. Magic came and gone without much to remember. The skeleton archers brought down one my Rippers, damn. My turn 2 came and I measured the distance between the Ripperdactyls and the Terrorgheist to my left. It's now or never. I needed a 10 or 11 inches and rolled it! The Ripperdactyls made it in. I pushed my scar vet on my left forward so that if the Rippers don't succeed in killing the Terrogheist, he'll be able to charge next turn. I continued to push my blocks and what was left of my cav and my old-blood towards the vampires unit (Old-blood wasn't a part of the cav unit... I have no idea why in hindsight). I totally anticipated a charge from his vamp bus into my Temple Guard. Magic came and went, nothing too memorable. I casted some spells to return wounds on characters. In the combat phase I was lucky enough to rull just enough wounds on the Terrogheist, and for him to miss all of his attacks to pop it in one turn! My rippers over-ran off the table.

His turn 3 he surprised me and charged his vamp bus into the cold-one unit. They are going to have a baaaaad time I thought. I thought though if for some reason the Old-Ones grace me and allow the cav to live I could counter-charge with the templeguard and old-blood into the flank of the bus. Combat came and luckily 2 saurus cold-one riders lived and passed their break test. Mannfred and Terrorgheist made short work of the scar-vet to my right, and were clearing skinks away, whom were desperately trying to poison Mannfred.

The big turning point in the game was the counter charge of the temple guard and the old-blood into the vamp bus unit. The Strigoi had the potion of strength that my opponent later on realized he forgot to use, which meant my Old-blood was able to kill the vampire fairly easily. With the vampire gone it didn't take long for the unit to be wiped. This also meant that when I destroyed the rest of the unit in his next turn I could reform and charge my temple guard into the terrogheist (whom had flown nearby to attempt to scream the old-blood) and the Old-Blood into Mannfred who fluffed his attacks and got stuck with a unit of skinks he charged a turn earlier. While all this is happening the casket manages to wipe my last scar-vet but the returning ripperdactyls destroyed the casket and blowing themselves up haha!

After all was said and done the Lizards took home 26 points and the Undead Legions 4. My no-holds barred pushed towards him paid off, but my opponent did suffer some poor luck near the end. Particularly when Mannfred did not succeed in breaking a unit of skinks that needed a leadership test on 4. Logan pointed out afterwards that with the BSB nearby the chances of succeeding that are 58%, so I guess it wasn't totally unrealistic.

I finished my last game with 26 points and the tournament with 102. Overall I was 21/58, and in battle I was 15-16/58. Logan and Dany had some bad luck in their last games which meant I was able to squeak to the top of our group beating them out by about 1-1.5 points, yay haha!

ND Open VII Review 

The ND Open was a fantasic event. If they had pre-registration that day for the one in a year from now I would have definitely ponied up the money. The prize support was outstanding, the organization was impeccable, location fantastic, etc. Ultimately, the boyz and I had a ton of fun! These are same guys that run Chaos Ludik every year and they hit it out of the park every time. A big thanks to Dom and Steve, and the rest of their crew for a fantastic event. I don't have any major gripes but here would be my suggestions for improvement, that in no way prevented me from having a fantastic time:

Areas for improvement:

1. The gaming room was a little tight. There was some empty space in adjacent areas that could have been used for a couple of tables, which might have reduced a bit of the congestion that occurred at times between rounds. 

2. Too many announcements. With all the people the room was already loud enough, and I spent the better part of the tournament at tables that were right next to the speakers in the room. Often announcements would blare through the speakers and in a tournament like this you are already battling headaches in the later rounds. Most of these announcements were for time, or to call people over. Perhaps a timer on the projector, and manually looking for individuals would be better since the noise pollution is already high. This may not be an issue for most, but I'm particularly sensitive to noise (I'm a wimp, ha!).

3. The food was delicious day 1 with a club and fried. Day 2 was pizza and a pile of more fries. Most gamers may not have any complaints about this, but a something green wouldn't have hurt, especially for people who traveled their and may have had their fill of road food.

4. The scenarios were excellent, except, for me, the one I mentioned in game 5 where an opponent can steal the initiative and be granted a major advantage before the game even starts. With this type I would suggest either to move to alternate deployment, or just remove the chance to steal the first turn. 

As you can see I don't have much ill to say about the ND Open. It was a fantastic tournament all around. I will be definitely going back next year. This time; however, my eye will be on #1!

Thanks for reading,


Tuesday, March 10, 2015

ND Open VII - Nick's perspective - Day 2

Day 2 at the ND Open - Nick's Perspective

7am came early on day 2. The boyz and I got up, got ready and were quickly out the door. We made our way to the military base in Valcartier, Quebec where the tournament was hosted and grabbed some breakfast at the mess. Not long after we were facing our opponents for round 5.

Game 5 - Lizards vs Chaos Dwarfs

I walked up the game 5 table and met my next opponent. He was running a Chaos Dwarfs list that seemed pretty standard to me, but, admittedly, I don't have much experience with them, despite Andrew having them as an army. Here's a breakdown, from memory, of the Chaos Dwarf list:

- Sorcerer Prophet - Death - Flying Carpet
- Deamonsmith Sorcerer
- Infernal Castellan - BSB
- Hobgoblin Khan
- 20-25 Infernal Guard - Blunderbuss - Command
- 20ish Hobgoblin archers
- 3 Bull Centaurs
- Magma Cannon
- Deathshrieker Rocket Launcher
- Hellcannon
- K'Dai Destroyer

I must admit that if I had to classify one game as bordering on the non-enjoyable side at the ND open, this would have been the one. This is for a couple of reasons, I'll get to them later.

This is one of the few scenarios which I had some issues with. The deployment zones were separated by a diagonal line from one corner of the table to the other. Approximately 25 inches separated the two different zones. Objectives were placed as shown in the following diagram (image stolen from the ND open VII player's pack) : 

As part of the scenario the player who rolled highest before deployment had to deploy their whole army first, then the other player got to deploy theirs. Prior to the game beginning if the player who deployed rolls a 6 they were able to "steal the initiative". Here's my problem with this scenario. First, deploying the whole army first effectively allows for your opponent to pick and choose the likely match-ups to happen during the game. A player can mitigate the advantage this would offer by planning their deployment appropriately in a cohesive, planned battleline rather than a typical rock-paper-scissors deployment strategy that often happens during a alternate deployment scenario. The problem I have is that the player who was able to optimize their deployment now has a chance, albeit slim, to double-up on their advantage before any unit has even moved yet. Of course, I'm complaining about it, because it happened to me. The die came up a 6. This put the major advantage to my opponent. Of course, there was nothing I could do here to change the outcome so all I had to do was change my plan. Unfortunately, this wasn't the worst part of the game.

The game started pretty standard. I pushed my Temple Guard towards his artillery and his infernal guard guarding them. I kept most of my units within the Slann's 12" bubble given the hell cannon facing across from me. I figured the most I could do was to push towards my opponent and hope to not take too much damage getting there. Despite the disappointing beginning with the stolen turn, I still had some aces up my sleeve. I charged the K'Dai destroyer early in the game, turn 2, with both of my scar-vets because of their flaming ward. I don't know much about Chaos Dwarfs, but I do know that the K'Dai is something that I don't want hitting my units. Of course, poor luck continued and one of the Scar-Vets rolled double 1's on their ward vs the monster. Later, I also charged the Bull Centaurs with my Ripperdactyl Riders. This is where some of the questionable moments began. I asked my opponent the stats of the centaurs and understood S5 T4, but their stats are S4 T5. This would have changed my plan. Of course, it is possible that I misunderstood so I shrugged it off and continued to play the game. 

The interesting points of the game continued. Mid-game, a turn before my temple guard charged his infernal guard, I threw 4 or 5 dice at Flesh to Stone on my remaining Scar-Vet fighting the K'Dai to keep him alive. I miscasted. I threw one die at my throne of vines, a four came up to ignore the result and I continued on... except my opponent has issues with it. My opponent protested and claimed that he had dispelled Throne of Vines the previous turn. I did not recall this at all. I still had the card sitting next to my unit, and I always pull the card when the spell is gone. Not wanting to argue, I rolled the result and 11 Temple Guard were unfortunate victims of this misunderstanding. 

Seeing that I was unlikely to win this game on victory points I began my move towards the objective on my right flank. The objectives were that for each turn you held one or both you scored 1 or 2 points. At the end of the game the difference between this score translated into the objective points. Therefore, my terradons started their way and nabbed the first objective. I declared this to my opponent and scored myself one. At that same time, my opponent then indicated that his Bull Centaurs had been holding the left objective since the beginning of the game. At turn 3-4, this was a surprising revelation. Certainly, if he controlled an objective it was up to him to announce it, make necessary measurements at the time, then score it. Up until this point who was to say if his unit was in range, particularly since some adjustments to units movement were made, and the unit had pursued my fleeing Ripperdactyls. Of course, in the spirit of being a good sport I compromised and agreed that he could score the last two turns. This again came up at the end of the game when my opponent wanted to score objectives during each of our turns, this would have given him the advantage. We called a TO and they ruled in favour of my interpretation. 

Most of the remainder of the game my opponent pondered his few moves far too long in my opinion. Perhaps the near-argumentative nature of the game had stalled it and we had only reached turn 4. This, in turn, meant that when I took the upper hand turn 4 I wasn't able to capitalize on my hard-earned army superiority, having now effectively eliminated most of his warmachines, his BSB and his Infernal Guard unit, and with one wound left to pull off the K'Dai. Alas, it was not to be and we ran out of time. Moreover, given the failed attempt at his Bull Centaurs early in the game, he was able to rack up objective points virtually un-opposed. 

The final straw in the game happened near the very end. Around turn 4 my opponent moved his hobgoblin khan to, what appeared to be, the closest he could to my saurus unit on my left flank to re-direct and prevent their charge into the bull centaurs. No problem, I do the same thing with skinks. The next turn, seeing as I need to rack up points I decided to declare a charge. He elected to flee. I stated that his Hobgoblin looks to be about 1 inch away (since that was the distance he intended) and that should he choose to flee if I roll my dice and add 3 inches (the movement of my saurus minus the distance that separated them) that I would catch his khan. He agreed and rolled. He rolled a 10 and I rolled a 7, and said great my saurus will over-run the khan. Before continuing he brought out the tape measure and protested that, in fact, the khan was more like an 1.25 inches away instead and that I didn't catch him. I was surprised, because we had just agreed in the spirit of the game. A lot happens during a game and units get slightly moved and what-not, and this is where I believe that good opponents agree on distances and LOS for those reasons. Also this speeds up a game so that one player doesn't incessantly nudge his units in the absolute perfect position. To me warhammer is a game of inches and not millimeters. We looked it over and his khan was slightly above an inch away, but we both knew that wasn't his intention and he had already agreed prior to us rolling. The tricky position I'm in at this point is that if I decide to insist on the khan being dead then I risk the opponent meta-penalizing me by knocking my sports score. I figured at this point the Khan's points didn't matter too much so I let it go and we finished the game. 

I won't go out and say that my opponent was deliberately in some of the events that transpired, or was being unsportsman, though sometimes it did feel that way. I must not have been the only one that felt that way since he scored the second lowest on the player voted sports score of the tournament. The game ended and the Lizards scored 12, and the Chaos dwarfs 18. I now had no chance of winning best General, and Logan and Dany were leagues ahead of me. I endeavoured to shrug it off and go into my next game with a clear head and look to have a good time, and I did!

More on that next time! (I know I said this was a two part blog, but I changed my mind since I did a lot of complaining during this one haha! The next one is more cheerful, I promise!)

- Nick

Monday, March 9, 2015

ND Open VII - Nick's perspective - Day 1

Hey lads and lasses,

Nick here from 1 Plus Armour and I wanted to give my perspective on the ND Open VII, a Warhammer fantasy tournament in Quebec City, Quebec that the crew and I recently attended. In this article I will go over my thoughts of the tournament, and also break down the games I had and what I learned from the experience. Let’s get started!

To battle!

First off, let me give you a rundown of the list I brought to ND open.

Nick’s SuperMcAwesome Lizardmen


Slann Mage priest – MR(2)- harmonic convergence – channeling staff – Becalming cogitation
Saurus Oldblood mounted on Cold-one – Crown of Command – Great Weapon – Armour of Fortune – dawnstone


Scar vet on cold-one – enchanted shield- sword of striking – dragonbane gem
Scar vet on cold-one – dragonhelm – great weapon – light armour


10 skink skirmishers
10 skink skirmishers
10 skink skirmishers
10 skink skirmishers
10 skink skirmishers
20 Saurus warriors – Full command


5 Cold-one riders – banner
25 temple Guard – razor banner
3 terradon riders- champion
3 ripperdactyl riders – champion

Here are the games!

Day 1

Game 1 – Lizards vs Fast-cav Dark Elves

Everyone hopes to have a decent first game when walking into a tournament. When I walked up to the table to meet my very cheerful and smiling opponent I thought “what a great start!” Of course, this was until I saw his army… fast cav dark elves. My opponent brought a pretty mean looking list consisting of the following (roughly from memory):
- Master on Pegasus
- Lvl 2 sorceress on death
- 4 units of dark riders
- 2 units of crossbowmen
- 20-30 executioners
- 2 units of 6 warlocks
- 4 bolt throwers
… yay…

The scenario was standard battleline deployment 12 inches from the board. The tournament ran a 20-nil system where you needed 2400+ points to get the full 20, so it was difficult. For this game the secondary objectives were to kill the highest cost unit, and to have more scoring units in the enemy deployment zone and these awarded an additional 10 points. Therefore the sum of the scores between the two players had to equal 30 at the end of the game. Knowing the objectives and seeing his army I knew I didn’t stand much chance scoring the objective points… and it wasn’t going to any easier racking up the VPs.

The game basically went as you would have imagined. I was pushing forward and he was going around. Despite me having many skink skirmishers, without magic missiles it was hard to get those fast units. Early game I pushed my cold-one cavalry with my characters near the middle of the board but along the right flank. My plan was to hit his crossbowmen units, containing his wizard, and make my way into the side of the executioners roughly around the same time my Temple Guard would reach them. Unfortunately, my cunning opponent managed to kill enough cold-riders that resulted in them being outside BSB range and, of course, at one of the most crucial points in the game I failed my stupidity test. There you have it folks, 800 points of my army slowly walking D6 up, staring at the daisies, while he takes this opportunity to re-arrange some units effectively ensuring I won’t be killing too much with them until later in the game. I did manage to break away the old-blood and some scar-vets to do some minor hunting, but not enough to really bring it home. It’s worth noting that we only managed to get to turn 4. I know some of the other 1Plus team played the same guy and, similarly, did not make it past turn 4. This is both likely a result of the short round times (2h15m), and the number of moves and shots the dark elves have to take every turn. To this end, my only suggestion for people with similar armies is that you need to work hard to move the army and shoot as fast as possible. You really can’t spend too much time nudging, and double/triple checking distances because both players are going to run out of time. In basementhammer this is fine, but in tournaments this can mean quite the difference when the later turns are important for armies like Lizardmen that only effectively engage mid-late game. Of course, I ran 50 skinks so the onus isn’t completely on my opponent, and I really don’t think this was done in malice, but simply that he was newer to the game. As well, I don’t think it was a tremendous problem, perhaps ending early only served to mitigate my loss haha! Altogether the game was super enjoyable, despite the slower nature of it, and would love to have a game with my opponent again over a couple of beers.

The Lizards went for 13, and the filthy Elves took 17 points this game. Next time!

Game 2 – Lizards vs… Lizards?

Still licking my wounds, I walk up to the next table and notice something funny… Lizardmen?! By Sotek and Spaceship Pyramids! Lizards can’t fight lizards, that’s perverse! Of course, we both agreed that his were the bad lizards (since I’m writing the post I get to tell the story how I want-Nick), and reconciled this obvious matching issue. Here’s a rundown of his army.

- Slann on Light
- Gor-Rok
- 2 terradon chiefs
- 3 units of skink skirmishers
- 30-35 man saurus block with command
- 24 temple guard
- 10 Chameleon skinks
- 2 salamanders
- Ancient Stegadon with engine of the gods

His list wasn’t too dissimilar to mine, except he went for more blocks, while mine is more chaff. I’ll give to him for taking a stegadon to a tournament since they tend to eat cannon balls all day. Since he had his big saurus block with Gor-Rok I knew immediately I didn’t want to meet him in the middle, he would probably just overrun me. As well he was pretty smart putting his stegadon between them to support either, and I definitely knew I didn’t want that thing thunderstomping the shit out of my precious temple guard. Of course, my ace-in-the-hole old-blood was available to hold one of them up… but which one?

The game started and I moved up cautiously, while he was more than happy to push. The skinks on both sides did their skinky thing and basically participated in what one could only imagine be the Lizardmen equivalent to a slap fight on the flanks, trying to grab objectives. He kept a solid battleline so it was really tricky trying to break him apart, so I thought I would set up a trap. Similar to him I deployed my TG and saurus block next to each other but my old-blood between them. My units were staggered and slightly offset from his, in other words my battleline from my perspective was to the right of his. On my left I moved up a units of skinks well within charge distance from him. I was hoping he would assume I would just flee with them if he charged with his templeguard, rather than my actual plan of holding for it as sacrifice to the Old Ones (poor little skink bastards). Because his skink chiefs were causing mayhem in my deployment zone (more on that later) I knew that after combat if the skinks fled or were vaporized he would have to overrun, likely within a juicy charge from my templeguard into his flank. He took the bait, and it worked perfectly! To ensure that the Stegadon didn’t counter charge my Templeguard in the flank, I charged it with my stubborn S7 old-blood. I then moved up the saurus, whom likely were to meet a gritty end against his and Gor-rok. Luckily my old-blood killed the stegaon in two turns and went in to help my saurus while my templeguard finished up his and went in for the rescue as well. To sum it up, my dirty trap worked and allowed me to kill all his bocks and the stegadon. Of course, my opponent didn’t give up and slightly outdid me on the objectives. As well, he surprised me with his flying skink chiefs because they had a 4+ ward save, and tied up some of my stuff unexpectedly. We only made it to turn 4-5 this game as well, so likely we were, again, both a little slow on the turns.

In the end the good lizards (mine) took home 19 points, while the ones that needed to be removed from the spawning grounds preserved 11. I’m happy so far with my progress.

Game 3 – Lizards vs Canhammer Empire

I walk up to game 3 and, lo and behold, I meet Canhammers John Franklin. John is a good friend of the 1Plus team and he and I played just the weekend before at a local store tournament in Ottawa. In Ottawa, I managed to wipe his Orcs and Goblins (with a bit of cheating), but this time he brought one scary-ass empire list.. at least from a Lizards point of view. Here are the deets:

- Light mage level 4
- Arch-lector on war altar
- Level 1 light mage
- Level 1 light mage
- BSB of sorts
- 5 Knights
- 5 Knights
- 5 Knights
- 5 Knights
- Skirmishing archers
- 3-4 demigryph knights
- Great cannon
- Great cannon
- Hellblaster
- Steam Tank

I’m going to be honest and say that I thought it was John’s turn to table me. With all his artillery I didn’t think it would take too much time for me to lose all my scar vets and the old-blood. My templeguard were also going to take quite the beating making it over to his side of the table. The objectives were how many units you could get across the center line and something else that I can’t recall.

My basic strategy here was to get to him asap, but he was effectively using his knight units as chaff to prevent this ingenious plan of mine. Early in the game John had misfired with his cannon to my right and I took that opportunity to hide my old-blood to side of a building outside the LOS of the other cannon on the far left. My cold-ones were an inch to the old-blood’s right with a scar-vet and took a charge from the demigryph knights early. Come combat the demigryph knights underperformed and I was able to hold ground allowing the old-blood to get in a make short work of them. This turned the game for me allowing to rack up some points on the right flank. In the middle of the board the skinks and saurus did a great job of taking care of most of the knight units while the templeguard hurried toward the hellblaster. On my left a group of knights broke through to grab the centerline objective.

Late game, my old-blood unfortunately finally fell to a cannon shot while my scar-vet somehow got into the war altar and arch-lector. They traded slaps for the remainder of the game. The temple guard eventually got the hellblaster but then john surprised me and pulled a dirty trick. I should have seen it coming. Just when I thought I was going to get his character bunker, all of them in with the archers, he chaffed the temple guard with his level 1 mages preventing contact between my big unit and his expensive one. Finally he charged his steam tank, whom was busy earlier in the game running over skinks, into the templeguard to hold them there until the end of the game. The game ended with units stuck in futile combats and we counted it up. There’s was less than a 30 victory point difference and we shared the objectives.

The Lizards took 15 points, and graciously allowed the empire to take 15 with them. Awesome game, I really enjoy playing John again.

Game 4 – Lizards vs Combined Elf List

My next opponent was none other than Steve Gagné, co-host of the tournament, Norther Defender and regular on Geeks of the North Podcast. We were both excited to play this game and it didn’t disappoint. Just one amazing game. Of course, Steve brought a dirty combined elf list. Here it is:

- Level 4 mage on metal
- Loremaster of Hoeth with Book of Hoeth
- NO BSB – what a crazy SOB
- 10-15 glade guard with trueflight
- 10-15 glade guard with trueflight
- 10-15 glade guard with hagbane
- 6 Wild Riders
- 6 Wild Riders
- 10 waywatchers
- 7-10 wardancers
- Frostheart Phoenix
- 2 bolt throwers

This scenario was a 15” deployment zone save for 9” inches from the side. It was a modified blood and glory where reducing your opponents fortitude to 2 resulted in winning the secondary objectives. I believe there were other secondary objective but I can’t recall.

With the glade guard to punish my poor T2 skinks and the bolt throwers and waywatchers to hunt my precious 1/2+ save characters and cavalry I wanted to get to his side ASAP. Of course, I couldn’t be careless because he had wild riders and a bird waiting for just the occasion. To be honest, not a lot of thought went into this and the game was full of laughs and just a shit-show.

Essentially the game started with Steve raining arrows and magic to my side of the board with what one can only describe as an excellent first turn for him. He managed to significantly reduce my skink units and punish my temple guard. He knew that if the temple guard made it to his side it would mean game over. To the end, he very strategically “6 diced” final transmutation on them and I lost probably 8-10 lizards in that unit, ouch! My turn came and I scrambled. The skink cloud on my left flank started to move and re-deploy to the right to avoid the hail of arrows they were suffering through (again, poor little bastards). The temple guard nodded to the recently dead and pushed forward to get my frog into strategic positioning. My cavalry moved up and the scar vets broke off from the unit. I was hoping that Steve would take the bait and that they would soak up some metal magic for a turn with their 2+ wards vs flaming. The old-blood took his lads up, but it would be their doom. The magic phase came and I returned the favour by 6 dicing dwellers below. I didn’t miscast and Steve brought out his scroll.

Steve's next turn was similar, but his luck started to fade, and this would echo throughout the remainder of the game for him. His Wild riders started their hunt and found some victims, luckily they were only 70 point skinks. His magic phase came and using a strategy that has passed the test of time 6-diced final transmutation again. It wasn’t a miscast but somehow the Slann dropped the ball and didn’t manage to outdo the Wood Elf Spellweaver. 5 more templeguard paid the price. My turn came and the old-blood made it into the waywatchers. They had a chance to kill him but their arrows did not find their mark. At this point, I thought I should start keeping a kill count for him, because he is just awesome. In the next few moments of the game, admittedly, luck played a part here. My templeguard were within a reasonable charge range of his gladeguard and level 4 that were hiding in a forest. I declared several charges, including that one. He elected to flee with them and rolled well. At the time that was a foregone plan, but without other targets I had no choice but to pursue. I resolved my other, futile charges and then it came time to roll the dice for the templeguard who would find themselves helpless on the edge of the forest with an army of elves pointing towards them, except I rolled double 6’s and managed to catch his unit and his level 4. This was a good turn. My next turn I was able to reform them and dwellers off the other caster unit and his loremaster. It looked like Steve’s luck defected to my side mid-game. The remainder of the game my old-blood spent dodging bolt throwers, while the phoenix charged the temple guard in the forest. The phoenix wiped them out, but luckily the Slann lived and was stubborn being an infantry character in the forest, effectively preventing his demise (well the 4+ ward helped too). Interestingly, one of the scar-vets whom dodged some of the searing dooms made his way into some glade guard mid-late game. I got lucky and made short work of the archer units that were cornered by in his deployment zone. What swung the game at the end was the scar-vet was able to break the remaining archers last turn and run them down. He had no BSB!

The game ended and Steve and I had a great time.  It was a bloody affair on both sides. Ultimately the Lizards took home a very minor win with 16 points versus Steve’s 14 points. This was my very pathetic retaliation for the effective trouncing Steve gave me during capital city bloodbath in August 2014. Great game and a decent finish for day 1.

The lads and I celebrated a great day of gaming out at a nice restaurant, recounting our battles and singing the songs of our people. At this point in the tournament Dany was crushing face, Logan wasn’t far behind him, while I was stagnating mid-pack. Day 2 would change everything. Stay tuned!

Dany's ND Open VII Review

Hey guys,

ND Open just finished a couple of hours ago. Had a great tourney - very well organized and nice tables. This event was my second fantasy tournament and I'm very satisfied with my performance. We as 1PA did very good and I'm suspecting Nick and Logan will probably do a review as well of their experience in the next couple days. 

My 1st game was against a Dwarf gunline. 2 Organ Guns with Engineers, 2 Cannons with Fire Runes, 2 big blocks of Dwarfs - one with Iron breakers and one with Long beards. I was like this is gonna be rough for a first game. He deployed castled in a corner. I decided my best chance was to rush at his block with my crypt horrors and skeletons block ASAP because if I'm in combat he cant shoot at me. He started the game but I made sure I was 31 away from his organ gun and my TG out of his cannon LOS. It end up being a good strategy I rushed my army forward, 6 dice'd TK signature spell, and was in his face turn 1. He had 1 turn of shooting but it was not enough. I end up with a 26-4 victory. It was a good start for me.

My second game was against the guy that end up winning best general. He was running a nasty Daemon list. 2 Skullcannons, 5 Plague Drones, 1 Nurgle DP, 3 MSU horrors, 10 Plaguebearers, 2 unit of 5 Khorne Furies, 6 Beasts of Nurgle, 1 Beast of Nurgle, and 2 units of 3 Screamers. I look at this and was like I dont know what I am gonna do against this. I decided to castle and go into the middle grabing 2 objectives and hoping for a tie. I knew they was no way I could win that game. He has the perfect list to beat me and on top of that he rolled Infernal Gateway, Blue Fire of Tzeentch, and Bolt of Change spells for his horrors. This game end up being the weirdest I've ever seen... both of us were ridiculously unlucky. Can you imagine one CC he had like 5A rollled 5 ones to his I was like OK my turn to hit back I rolled 5 ones too we looked at each other we were like WTF just happened. I screamed at his DP with a full TG did 7W his DP survived he's all happy and charges me with him into my TG with him and 5 fury of Khorne - I was like OK TG is done. He end up not even doing a single wound and I killed his DP. At the end he won 16-14 so pretty much a tie. I couldn't believe it. 

Third game was against a really nice guy. New player like myself running a fighty Dark Elf army with tons of Cold one riders and a big unit of witches. His name was Matthew Sellig he end up winning best sportsman and I'm glad he did he was really a nice guy. This game was really like a chess game we were both afraid to hit combats and end up finishing in my favor because he had no way to deal with my TG and I did some damage with him. I won 19-11. 

Forth game was bloody, my favorite of the tournament, against an Ogre player. He was running some Maneaters scouting with a flying Tyrant, one cannon, 4 Mournfang Cav, and 9 Ironguts with Butcher and BSB. Once again TG killed a lot. We end up in a bloodfest turn 2 and fight the whole game in the middle. At the end he had one BSB, One butcher, and one Firebelly left. My Vampire killed lots of ogres, but not enough to pull a 30-0 victory. I won this game 20-10

At this point I was in good position - top 10 in battle points for sure and 1st day was done. I was very satisfied of my performance and I realized people are bringing their A list and A game. Competition is very high and I like it. Everybody is nice to play again but everybody want to win which is what I want from a tournament. I'm really happy about the ambiance.

Starting Second day against an Empire army and I'm about 15 points behind first place and I'm playing beside him so I'm hoping hes gonna tie and I'm gonna win to catch up. The Empire player is running lots of 1+ armour units, 2 Hellblasters, and 1 cannon. I don't have much to deal with tons of 1+ armour units even though its our name. Once again Terrorgheist and Vamp iare there to save the day. Vamp Lord end up killing 8 Demigryph Knights, and Terrogheist killed 7 knights and 1 Steam Tank. I end up with a 19-11 Victory and both leaders in battle points end up with a tie so its perfect for me. I will start last game I'm at 98 pts and they are at like 20 pts over me hopefully I can finish this well and place in top 5. 

My last game is against a really nice guy that will end up winning Best Overall. He's running a cool list I'm excited about the matchup and I believe I have good chance pulling a victory not easily, but doable. His list is 1 level 4 Shaman scouting, and with Lore of Death, 1 level 1 Shaman with Lore of Shadow, 1 Minotaur BSB, Throgg, 2 unit of 6 Trolls, 2 Chimeras, 1 Nurgle Giant, 2 pack of 5 Furies, and 3 unit of Raiders. I'm like this is gonna be a bloody game. He put his lvl 4 shaman 29" away from my TG on the side of my army. Im like this is risky I have no choice to take the bait and try my chance to 6 dice my TK spell to kill his lvl4 right off the bat turn 1. I do it but I don't miscast so he Dispel Scrolls my spell and then we go into his turn. Imagine the worst thing that can happen to me and yes this is it... He starts by Miasma my TG and I let it go because I know whats coming - 6 dice Purple Sun and if its not a miscast I scroll for sure. He roll double 6... I'm in trouble. Artillery dice I'm still hoping for either a misfire or small roll so he gets only my TG I can leave with that. Shit happened, and boom here comes the 10 killing the Mortis Engine and Terrorgheist turn 1. Right there I'm done. My turn I tried desesperate come back - Throgg unit is 9" away from my Vamp unit make the charge and chariot with flaming banner to so that's good. I also charge the chimera with Vargheists because I have no choice its that or I lose the game. Vamp combat I end up doing tons of wounds but hes doing lots too with Throgg and there is a challenge between my Skeleton's champion and his BSB... and guess what he killed my champion and roll double 6s on Eye of the Gods... Yeah, here come the DP. He lose combat by 3 so I still have a small chance but roll a 5 so game is over right there we continue for two turn and it was done. I'm tabled, 30-0 for him. 

This end my tournament roughly but they was nothing I could do against that. I'm really happy about my Undead as they did way better than I expected. I'm changing back my list to ETC format now because next tournament is team tournament in Kitchener - it's gonna be fun for sure! 

Logan's ND Open VII Wrap-up

Here we are after ND Open VII, and I have to say that I had an absolute blast! Below I'll be giving a recap of the event in a similar form that was done with Canadian Shield.

The Venue

ND Open is held at the Valcartier CFB (Canadian Forces base) near Quebec City in Quebec. The venue its self is quite large (see below), has two cafeterias (officers mess/mess) on site with decent food for dirt cheap, and... a bar! Not a fantastic beer selection mind you, but good enough for a beer or two throughout the day.

In total I believe there were around 64 tables between WHFB, 40k, and Warmachine. This is awesome because it means it is a huge event, but it also means that it was extremely cramped. Hopefully next year they will expand the gaming area into the side rooms (which were empty) to open things up a bit. While there was room to stand (and sometimes use chairs) during games, moving between games was a terrifying experience when trying not to run into someone and drop your army (or theirs), In the photo above you can see a guy in a black shirt and pants walking quickly - that is the only path from the back 12 tables to the front ones, and tables were arbitrarily assigned other than the last round. Imagine 40+ people trying to shuffle through there with their armies... not too fun.

Outside of space, the other issue was lighting. In the back of the room (behind the guy in the black sweater) there were another 16-20 tables - some of these had lights above their rows, some did not. I won't complain about eye strain, but what I will complain about is dice... I had a game in the row with no lighting and my opponent had the small (GW sized) red & black dice with black pips. From more than about 1/4 across the table it was impossible to actually see the pips. This is not to imply in any form that any fudging of rolls was done, but simply that it is a quality of life thing that would be good to improve in some form, though I really cannot suggest how.

The Player's Pack & Scenarios

Overall pretty solid! The scenarios were fun and all had secondary objectives (worth 10 points total) in addition to the primary missions which were scored on a normal 20-0 scale. I think the only things that rubbed me the wrong way in the scenarios was some of the secondary objectives being things like "kill the opponents lowest value unit" since this means that I have to devote resources to keeping my chaff alive which is no small task against lots of Elf shooting. Somewhat minor I suppose, but it's 3 points that is extremely hard to reclaim (meaning - tie) against lots of lists.

Soft scores for this event were a checkmark style score for Sportsmanship, Judged painting, and player's choice painting (single vote per person). Judged painting was a bit odd since it was done during the rounds, however there was a painting rubric that was released back in October when registration began, so it was clear what the judge(s) were looking for. Not sure if it would have been better done during lunch or something like that, however from everyone I've spoken to it sounds like it was judged extremely fairly, and I don't believe anyone would argue about who won best painted.

The pack its self was also in both French and English which was extremely nice for those of us coming in who do not speak French well, or at all.

Scenarios -

All scenarios had normal 20-0 scoring (with 20 being 2400+ points difference) and secondary objectives outlined below.

Game 1 was Battle Line with the following secondaries - destroy enemy unit worth the most points, have more Ground Control (units with command model(s)) in enemy deployment zone than are in yours, and kill the enemy general or force him to flee off the table. No complaints here, good fun.

Game 2 was Battle Line with 9" deployment zones and 5 objectives spread evenly across the center of the table. These objectives could be picked up and moved by any scoring unit, but were dropped if the unit moved involuntarily or due to magic. Secondary objective was 2 points per objective held at the end of the game.

Game 3 was Battle Line with an extra 100 points for each unit with a command model that was destroyed, fleeing, or fled off the table. Secondary objectives were to kill/flee off the table the enemy BSB, have a unit with Ground Control in the enemy deployment zone, and prevent your opponent from having a scoring unit (and non-Lord/Hero) in your deployment zone at the end of the game.

Game 4 was Blood & Glory with secondaries of reducing opponents fortitude to 2 or less, and having more scoring units across the center line of the table than your opponent. 

Game 5 was Dawn Attack with two objective markers 18" in from each table corner. These objectives were scored per turn. The secondary in this mission was based on the difference in objective score at the end of the game - tie being 5 points for each player, and going up/down 1 in each direction to a maximum of 10-0 from there.

Game 6 was Battle Line with an extra 250 points for each Lord killed, and 100 points for each Hero killed. Secondaries were to kill the unit with the lowest point cost, control more table quarters than opponent, and keep your lowest point cost character alive. 

Overall solid scenarios. As noted above, I really didn't like the lowest point cost unit objective in game 6, as it was effectively 3 points I could not score with the matchup I had so I could only push for a tie.

The Tables

Considering there were at least 50 tables here, the quality was very solid. Granted, many were green felt, but the terrain pieces were all excellent! The front row of tables were theme tables. and the terrain on some of these was a bit problematic depending on how you agreed to play it with your opponent - either lots of difficult terrain, or in some cases it would be impossible for a horde of 25mm bases to advance outside of the deployment zone.

I also had a game on a table with no less than 6 swamps, 3 pieces of impassable terrain, and 6+ pieces of difficult terrain spread somewhat evenly across the table. A bit overkill, but the swamps/difficult terrain did not affect gameplay much in that case.

Overall, very good!


So you all know my thoughts about lunch scheduling. In this case lunch was after round 1 (meaning 10:45 AM) which is crazy early. With that said, lunch was provided - more on that later. Outside of that there were 30 minute breaks between rounds, however games were only 2h15. I feel like this is a bit short, especially for an event with this much competition, and potential language barriers. With only 2h15 per round, slow play can be a major issue, and since we're all Canadians it's a bit faux pas to call someone on it... we're too nice.

Slow play I know was an issue for opponents that each of us on 1 Plus Armour played against as we all had games that did not finish - we each ended up playing the same guy, and those games did not go past turn 4, and I believe Nick had a game that ended on turn 3 against a Chaos Dwarves player. Having a big timer on the projector would be nice, as well as announcements saying something like "15 minutes remaining, do not start a new round!" to try to deal with this. Not having a final 2 turns against many lists (e.g. fast cav heavy) is a huge problem.

Meta Thoughts (about the event, but not the gameplay)

Overall this event was absolutely amazing, so I really can't fault it for too much. Scenarios were released at the same time that registration opened (or earlier) so they were able to get months of feedback and playtesting leading into the event. Hotel recommendations were given out. Staff were extremely responsive... overall fantastic leading up to the event.

For the things that weren't amazing - we already spoke about the room being a bit cramped and not having great lighting, so let's talk about the food. Lunch was provided both days which was great given the price ($70 for 2 days, a t-shirt, swag bag, a raffle ticket, and lunch both days), however... unhealthy would be an understatement. The first day was club sandwiches and a pile of fries about the size of my head - overkill, but not bad. The second day was a slice of pizza at least 15cm by 12cm and a pile of fries the size of my head. I'm by no means a health nut, but I came home and ate nothing but veggies for dinner after the event... too much deep fried everything! Maybe half the fries, but add some veggies next time? Pizza and fries is just too much grease... With that said, the only other option was to drive off base which isn't practical, so it was better than it could have been!

Prize Support

In addition to having prizes for Best General, Best Overall, Best Presentation, Best Sport, and Best Presentation (Player's Choice) there were also prizes for Worst Painted, Worst Sport, and Worst Performance.

These were all solid prizes ($100+ in every case for the Best X), and the Worst prizes were hilarious. Worst Painted was a can of Quickshade, Worst Sport I cannot remember since the guy was cheering that he was an asshole so... yeah, and Worst Performance was a copy of a different game!

There was also a raffle with $2 tickets for your choice of an item from a table with over $4,000 worth of merchandise. Great stuff, and my buddy John (who sadly was unable to play) ended up going home with about $300 worth of raffle prizes for his $50 of tickets.

There were also grab bags with some model primer and objective markers. Nothing too fancy, but nice none the less. I'll hand it to Canadian Shield here - the objective markers there were much cooler, but it's nice to start a collection from everywhere.

Overall Thoughts

I had an absolute blast at this event. My voice is shot, my knees/back are killing, and my ass is sore after a 4 1/2 hour drive, but I'll definitely be back next year as well as their other event - Chaos Ludik in October.

We have tons of pictures from the event up on our Facebook page @ https://www.facebook.com/1PlusArmour.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Army Showcase - Dany's Undead Legions!

Hey guys,

Been a while, I was very busy for the past couple weeks. Some of us are going to ND Open this weekend in Quebec City. This event is just fantastic! Two days, 6 games, 60 people! I'm really excited about it! Nick is bringing his Lizardman, Logan is going with his Legions of Chaos and I decided to bring my Undead Legions (mostly VC) as you will see below.

My list is different from the traditional double Terrorgheist and Black Knights bus. I will show some pictures and explain the list.

First the mighty Vampire Lord, a BSB Wight King, and 35 skeletons with full command. I also have a level 1 Liche Priest in the second rank. This unit is my hard hitter and is really hard to kill one on one. 

Ok, so I said no double TG but you need at least one. You can see also my 3 converted Chariots so they look more like Vampire Counts instead of Tomb Kings, and a spirit host.

This unit look scary but it's actually just 30 zombies with banner. I'm using a nice model from Scibor miniatures for unit filler. 

Here is my big anvil. 8 crypt horrors with my converted Mortis Engine and 1 more spirit Host. 

In this pictures you see the whole army including my two packs of Dire Wolves and 4 Vargheists hiding in the tower. 

This is it. My army is ready for action. Hopefully luck will be on my side, and I know we are bringing camera so you will hear from us this weekend for sure about this great event!

- Dany