Well folks, Blog wars 5 is over and was an enjoyable day as always. Thanks very much to Alex for all his hard efforts which I greatly appreciate. Here's a rundown on my day:
For obvious reasons, the event was not held at Maelstrom games this time and instead was at Marauder in Stockport. Our host Darren was very gracious and the venue, while not quite as polished as Maelstrom, was fantastic for all our needs. The layout was ideal for a tournament and the scenery was, in my opinion, better than that Maelstrom offered. The food was OK, though there was a bit of a delay which the staff apologised for profusely. The staff were excellent and the table service for drinks made the day run very smoothly! I think they have the makings of an excellent gaming venue and with 25% off on the day with preorders there for you to pick up there's really not much to complain about. Well done guys and well done Alex for finding it.
For my first game I played against Matt Calow with his mixed BA/SM force. Although I was initially perturbed by the dual vindicators, A drop pod full of sternguard and Lysander (who sadly died later to a librarian) made short work of them paving the way for the rest of the army to advance. Ultimately I won the battle, but not by as much of a margin as the models on the table suggested - a testament to Matts tenacity. Sadly, my Space Wolves did nothing but sit in the corner for this battle otherwise I may have been in a position to push for a tabling. Matt was a great chap to play against and I thank him for a great game.
For game 2 I faced Ian Kings Dark Angels, a doublewing force with Azrael in command (so basically all HQ and troops). At first I was mortified about facing the army with my relatively flimsy codex marines, but a strong opening turn (again, Lysander and Sternguard making a huge dent) put me in a good position. As Ian pointed out, I basically used half my army to wipe his out while the other half sat back, gave some supporting fire and held the objectives. Lysander got man of the match for hammering his way through 2 squads of terminators, Azrael and the librarian. Good chap! Ian had some rotten luck with the dice though bless him, further compounded by the loss of his long-serving tape measure to a fall on the floor. Again, a fantastic guy who had none but the best of humours in a difficult game.
My final game was on table 2 (!) against Chris Benstead (eventual 2nd place) and his amazing Iron Warriors army (more on them later). Now, this is where my lack of experience on the gaming circuit comes in. Had I realised the position I was in at this point, I could have castled all my forces on my objective, made Chris come to me and likely had a draw, which would have finished me in 3rd place. What actually happened was I split my forces, with half going for his objective and the other half babysitting mine. Main reason for this was to keep in the spirit of the day - fun games hopefully with an Abaddon Vs Lysander deathmatch.
As it happens my attacking forces fared poorly with Lysander going in wounded and unsupported against Abaddon. In retrospect I should have teleported him in with the terminators rather than the sternguard. My objective sitters fared well from ranged fire thanks to the 2+ ruin save - from Lysanders bolster defences and warlord trait (which I got each game incidently). That was until a Heldrake appeared and started roasting things left right and centre. I've hear a lot of bitching on the internet about drakes and until now haven't experienced it myself. I disagree with the inclusion of units in a codex which can inflict such damage with relatively little you can do about it.
Still, I weathered the storm and was in place for a draw going into turn 7. I had two troops left next to the objective - one got roasted by the drake and the other needed to make a 2+ cover save on the last dice of the game, which he promptly failed! From draw to loss in one dice was pretty gutting and put me back from 3rd to 7th overall. Still, considering I don't play that often and don't bring competitive lists, coming 9th, 9th and 7th in my 3 blog wars appearances is respectable I think. Congrats to Chris on his overall placing. He was a great chap with a beautifully crafted army and fully deserving of the credit.
Painting contest (see here for pictures)
As anyone who reads the blog will know, I'm much more the hobbyist than the gamer. I see blog wars as a great motivator to get a new army painted. I previously won best painted for my Iron Hands in Blog Wars 3 which was great. This year I went for a much more fragmented colour scheme mixing several chapters together. As a result I doubted that I would have a shot at the army painting contest - things just looked too random and all of the bases were different. Still, I liked the idea and it kept painting interesting in the lead up to the event. Overall prize went to Hendrik Müller-Joswigfor his fantastically painted Dark Angels. It was very much deserved and, in my opinion, the best painted there. However, I did not vote for it as after talking with Hendrik earlier on he mentioned that it had been commission painted. This is fair enough as I appreciate that not everyone has the time/skill to paint armies up. However, I felt my vote should go to a self-painted army and so it went to Chris Bensteads amazing Iron Warrior army, which I eventually ended up playing.
The single figure entry I thought I had a decent shot at seeing as Lysander is my best effort on a single mini to date. The result ended up tied between myself, Chris' Iron Warrior Warsmith and Nathaniel Gibbs Coteaz (which I voted for). Nathaniel got the casting vote allocated and deservedly took best figure. I don't see this as a disappointment as I'm thrilled with how Lysander came out and to tie for first place is nothing to be ashamed of. I also think that the casting vote was very much in the spirit of the event as both myself and Chris did/have BW trophies already. I didn't find out til later, however, that Matt Greenwood had forgotten to vote and had Lysander down as his favourite - curse you Greenwood!
|Stop lazing around and vote!|
Overall a thoroughly enjoyable experience and I hope I will be able to attend BW6 later this year. Cheers to a great crowd and hope to see you again soon.