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The South London Legion marches to AngelCore and Honour & Glory

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Nico

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Six Legionaries are hitting AngelCore today (Declan, Leo, James, Ben Murphy, Simon and me) and another four (John if he defeats his hangover, Ben Savva, Nick and Hugh) for Honour & Glory (both effectively local events). I enjoyed H&G last year, even if Fulminators derped.

I’ve been a tad quiet on the blog. Real life has been eventful and I’ve not been to an event since The Finals. Hobby wise I settled on a Fyreslayer list for Angelcore and painted the few models I needed. 

 
The List
I opted to avoid taking a Battalion (although the controversial Kinband Battalion is very cheap in conjunction with the extra 8” range Rune).
 
  • Runemaster (Battleshock Immunity bubble.) General
  • 3 Runesmiters (1 with auto unbind artefact)
  • Runesmiter on Magmadroth
  • Battlesmith
  • 30 Vulkites
  • 30 Vulkites
  • 30 Aurics
  • Longstrike Raptors
  • Aetherwings
 
I also took the Runemaster as general - he is pretty throwaway - does very little unless you’re opponent puts a load of Dryads in a Wyldwood and he makes it erupt. 
 
He does have 6 wounds and most importantly he unlocks Aurics as Battleline. He can put a quasi Deadly rule on terrain, which could be fun vs Stonehorns. He gives your opponent a buff to one of their units of reroll wounds of one (their choice), but if he gets close to that unit he can give all your army +1 attacks against it for the rest of the game including pew pew! Unfortunately it is often used on Cannons and other long range stuff.
 
I took the Runesmiter on Magmadroth as he has the invaluable reroll wounds buff bubble, which plugs the gap when you tunnel up your forces (as the tunnel happens in the movement phase after the 3 normal Runesmiters would apply their buff). It’s particularly good as the timing is the same as Kairos: “Once per battle” so you can fire it off in the enemy turn or when he is about to die, rather than just in your own hero phase. He is very cheap for the cost, but super squishy and has an abysmal melee attack.
 
Other than that, the Battleline of the army is 2 x 30 Vulkites with Picks and Shields, plus 30 Aurics. All of these have an accompanying Runesmiter which allows them to pop up 9” away.
 
The picks provide -1 rend, which goes to -2 or even -3 if you get lucky with the rend Rune.
 
The Aurics are costly, but are a really good hammer or counterpunch unit. If the target is within 5” of a hero, then you can really melt it.
 
As for Allies, I needed to take some ranged threat to threaten 5 Wound heroes or artillery. Longstrike Raptors seemed perfect and could also use Aetherwings to block charges in the enemy charge phase - invaluable vs Murderhost on Scorched Earth or Ironjawz.
 
Hobby
Much of the army was painted over a year ago for Blood & Glory’s Friday night events. Due to my worst ever bout of #CraigRolls I lost every game (even a Fyreslayer off). Back then, the army cost a fortune, so I converted a few metal slayers into Fyreslayers. They are still very characterful models. 
 
Overall the plastic models are a joy to paint. The hair looks pretty good with a thin coat of Vallejo Dwarf Skin, then Orange Fire, then wash Carroburg, then Drybrush Basic Skin, wash Seraphim Sepia, Drybrush Ivory, wash Reikland Flesh, Shade the roots Carroburg. The gun barrels use Badger Minitaire Ghost Tints wet blended.
 
I’ve improved my skin painting as the army went along. Lots of thin glazed highlights alternating with washes.
 
Raptors and Aetherwings are excellent kits and I was able to practise a painting scheme that I might use if I ever get round to my Raptors (coincidence) 40K army.

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Day One - Game One

After a practice game vs the delightful George’s Beastclaw Army on the Friday we rocked up early for Game One against Joe Carr’s Hammerstrike Force. Significantly the FAQ for the event made this a true setup rule so they could setup directly into combat (I believe this is correct as no rule should be both a move and a setup). This made my Aetherwings pretty redundant as they could not block this. I did wonder whether they could fly over on the enemy’s charge phase and touch the back of the Retributors to hinder their pile ins (as each model must  pile in towards the nearest model).

Deployment

I bunkered with the 30 Vulkites and tunnelled the Magmadroth instead (as he can pop up and then use his “Once per game” ability as it’s not limited to my hero phase. I was near Mystical but didn’t have much of an effect in the game - it’s pretty useless for Fyreslayers as they have ample reroll wounds anyway.

Joe deployed opposite me in a bubble. Throughout the game his zoning off of territory was great - I was never able to get good spots to drop in my 30 blocks.

Joe picked the 4 Quarters Battleplan (the easiest one), while I went for killing 3 Battleline).

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Battleround One

Joe chose to go first from memory. He went for it. Smashing in 15 Paladins. 

I saved the shot from the Venator (or maybe he just did the Regular shots). The Paladins rolled badly and bounced - only killing a handful of Vulkites (and I had my Battleshock immunity aura) even before I could trigger Reroll Saves from the Battlesmith. 

Unfortunately for Joe I remembered a Triumph roll and got Saves, which I could immediately use. In the combat phase.

I would say that Joe was too defensive with his general. He needed Staunch Defender on his Paladins, even if this would require tailing back. He could have dropped him in behind with Liberators as a Shield behind (but I guess this would require a 3+ Roll and would cost him Battleshock immunity).

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I started the grind, killing a few Paladins in response.

In my turn, I picked the extra 8” throwing axe range and may even have rolled a 6 for the extra buff. 

I got the Reroll Saves Up . The Runemaster tried his Volcano ability on the Heraldor (fighting fire with fire - the two scenery attack heroes). Spoiler - the Runemaster is garbage except for having 6 Wounds.

I tunnelled up 30 Vulkites and the Magmadroth but left the Aurics off the table.

I popped the reroll wounds bubble just catching both units of Vulkites.

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The axes weren’t very effective against Liberators (with Staunch and Lantern).

In the charge phase I managed to roll a (1, 2) charge so the reroll couldn’t help. This was the start of a pattern for 9” charges. The Paladins were melting away while the Vulkites stood firm. The Raptors did solid damage against the Retributors.

Battleround 2

The comet came down on the far right. I won the initiative and tightened the net. I hit the rend Rune, so the Vulkites would have -2 rend. The Magmadroth went off right to grab it, but fell short.

The Vulkites in Joe’s deployment area  made their charge and swamped the Castellant and the Lord Celestant on Dracoth. I dumped 30 shields into him, dropping 4 wounds. Unfortunately the LCoD survived with a wound left.

I rolled badly for the home Vulkites (4+, 4+ rerollable is still pretty swingy), so the Paladins clung on. My champions sucked all weekend. Damned terrain would be mental on Vulkites.

In response, Joe brought down 10 Liberators to my left (where I couldn’t get the Aurics to them easily) and 5 Liberators on the right objective. He used Lightning Chariot on his Relictor to lob itself to the right corner of the table on my side to score the 4 quarters secondary mission. While I was feeling confident on the primary mission (Starstrike) with 30 Aurics in the back pocket, I really didn’t need to be dragged down to a minor win by not getting my secondary too.

The Paladins were down to just the Maces and the Vulkites just kept coming. The LCoD died as did the Castellant.

Battle Round 3

The comets landed in the far right (vaguely near The Magmadroth) and right next to the Relictor - thankfully not near the 10 Liberators. I won the initiative and moved 3 Heroes onto the middle nearby objective (outnumbering the Relictor). The Magmadroth grabbed the far right objective and vommed Magma over the 5 Liberators - killing 3.

The focus quickly switched to the secondary objective as Joe sensibly conceded the Primary. I still could t get the Aurics into place, but the remaining Vulkites managed to kill off the Liberators by the end of Battleround 5.

Final result: 20-0

I got 1920 kill points to boot, which was a good haul but would keep me off the top table. A lot of the chat before the event was about avoiding/defeating Jack Armstrong with his Kroaknado list. 

It was a bad match up for Joe - he killed plenty of Vulkites, but got zero kill points somehow. He went on to win some of his games and said he really enjoyed the event so all good.

Edited by Nico
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So I was honoured and absolutely delighted to get my first ever painting nomination! I think the army has a strong overall impact as a sea of orange and some of the models were painted more recently (the Raptors, Aetherwings and the third Runesmiter in particular) to a higher standard. I learned a lot over the course of painting this army, so there's definitely an observable progression from the old Vulkites to the newer painted ones.

Rubbing shoulders with the likes of Adam Cunis and Ming was a good feeling - although I was sure that the trophies would not be winging my way.

Thanks to the TOs.

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Day 1 Game 2 vs Matt’s FEC

Game 2 was against the delightful Matt who deservedly won the best sports trophy. He had taken FEC, so getting less than 2000 kill points had spared me from Jack’s list and the Vanguard Wings.

Death are in a bad state now absent the 5++ Ward which was their best thing. To give one example - both Nighthaunt and the common build for Soulblight have armies entirely composed of fliers - aka bait for Kharadron Overlords armies! 
 
I have a FEC Force so I’m aware of how painful their lack of reach is. Sadly Crypt Horrors aren’t amazing and now cost as much as the superior Flayers.
 
I did like one thing in Matt’s List - the King’s Ghoul Battalion - solely for the Battleshock immunity it gives you from the start of the game. Death have plenty of defence that has to be switched on in your first hero phase, which can make all the difference vs DoT or KO alpha strikes. Losing 20 Ghouls turn one rather than 35 could make all the difference - especially when they can bring back models.
 
Deployment
It was Duality of Death, so heroes and behemoths to score. Matt deployed 2 Flappies on my right to grab that objective and then the horde on my left - with Horrors in front of Ghouls.
 
I deployed on the left as a bunker although I knew he was out of range turn one. I believe Matt decided to go first (which made sense in some ways as it meant he could get his 5++ Ward Save up and Mystic Shield.

 

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Battleround 1
Matt went first and put the 5++ Ward on his GKoTG and possibly Mystic Shield. I explained to him that Vanhel’s Danse Macabre only works in your own turn - so only one extra pile in.
 
He lobbed forward the GKoTG to score the right objective. On the left his blob waddled forward - but he rolled badly for the run on one of the heroes and didn’t make it onto the objective.
 
In response I fired the Farsight Rune and then I deployed 30 Vulkites across from the Blob, 30 on the right 9” Away from both Flappies and the Ghouls and 30 Aurics on my right flank - guns poised at the GKoTG. The Rubesmiter on Magmadroth fires off his once per game buff at the end of the movement phase - hitting all of my units with tails. The Battlesmith activated but only affected the heroes on the table.
 
 
The shooting was brutal - the Aurics annihilated the GKoTG with axes and Magmapikes. The Vulkites took some wounds off the regular Terrorgheist and dented the Horrors (I acknowledged that this was barely worth doing if he got the turn next due to the Courtiers.
 
I failed the 9” charge onto the TG with the right Vulkites despite a reroll. Same story on the left. The Magmadroth made it in and would score a point. He clung on and did some pretty irrelevant bleed damage. #BleedMeta
 
Score 1:1

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Battleround 2
Matt won the initiative. He sent the damaged TG onto the right objective. From memory the Crypt Ghast Horror went on the objective (we discussed this and it made sense as I would inevitably kill that hero next turn). The Ghouls and Varghulf and Horror Courtier went into the Vulkites. With zero rend on most of this it was a resounding bounce even without rerolls on the 4+ (not charged this turn) armour saves. I lost two models. Significantly I deliberately removed two models in the chain in order to leave a Runemaster shaped hole - so I could get to the objective next turn.
 
I ground back a fair number of models.
 
Then it was my turn. I fired the rend Rune and may have hit the 6 (although it makes little difference against the weak Saves of FEC).
 
I got the heroes through the gap on the left and charged onto the objective after shooting the Ghast off it (so I score it even though the Horror Courtier was there as I moved onto it). On the right side I deliberately held off from shooting the final wound on the Terrorgheist so that the Runesmiter could charge it, then the Vulkites would charge it, the 10 Ghouls and the Necrbromancer. By doing so I could lob 30 Shields at the Terrorgheist to kill it - or activate the Vulkites first if need be, then the Runesmiter could pile onto the objective to score it with a move over the corpse (even after taking D3 mortal wounds to the face).
 
Everything went to plan and I inflicted massive casualties and grabbed both objectives. The Major was in the bag on the primary.
 
To his credit Matt scored his secondary - which forced me to get mine for the full 20 Points. I had Treasure Hunter so I made sure not to kill the Varghulf too early.

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Major victory 20-0
I killed 1980 to Matt’s 200 - the Runesmiter on Bleed Dragon. Matt didn’t play badly and knew his army pretty well. He was a true gent and went on to win best sports!
 
Reflecting on the game over lunch and thinking about it again now, Matt should have put the defensive buffs on the unridden Terrorgheist. That way even after I killed it, the ridden one could still have cast its spell.
 
Going first probably wasn’t a mistake (as otherwise I would have flooded the objectives), but Matt needed some chaff in front of his heroes to keep me from deleting his Flappy. Maybe the distances made that impossible. Some 60 Point Dire Wolves could have saved him. The 15” range of the Magmapike means that you can screen from them (unlike Arkanauts who can deploy 9” away and still hit a hero on the backline turn one) - the real source of their power.
 
Death need reinforcements in the form of a completely new faction desperately. It occurred to me that another reason why Soulblight and Nighthaunt underperform is that (with the typical choice of the all fly Battle Trait), they hand Kharadron Overlords rerolls of 1 to hit and wound vs the whole army.
Edited by Nico
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Hi Nico, great blog! It was really nice to meet you at the event and well done with your painting nomination, it’s well deserved. I enjoyed our warm up game on the Friday night, it put me in a good mood the whole weekend! Look forward to crossing axes with you again sometime soon :)

Edited by Salarath
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Such great and insightful battlereps, thank you so much for these !

Unfortunately I 've never got to play with Fyreslayers yet but your analysis is great to the point that gives me an idea of how this army works - and it's really strong indeed.

Really looking forward to the rest !

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1 hour ago, Salarath said:

Sadly I haven't got a ticket, I assume they've all sold out?

 

They are sold out, but well worth posting on TGA or on Twitter as almost inevitably people do drop out and wish to resell their tickets.

It’s possible that there is a waiting list, but I don’t know.

Edited by Nico

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