Sunday, March 27, 2011

Grey Knights Afterthoughts - Discordian

Well the Grey Knights have dropped and are making daemons of all kinds sad. And in fact are making all other space marines question which selective service they decided to join. These guys bring all the best toys to the party, even a barrel of monkeys!

Those dam dirty apes

As of now Ive played two games with the official updated codex. The first was capture and control against my own Eldar army that my friend borrowed. It was one elite killer army against another, Eldrad was laughing the whole time because you cant cast psychic powers against Eldar and expect to get away with it. The game was a slaughter for both sides though, but I pulled off a narrow win because I had one scoring Dreadnought with no arms hiding (grand strategy is one of the most useful army upgrades you can ever have) and a lone librarian tanking a unit of Wraithguard.

The second game was against another friends Tyranids. I set up my models and he set up his, I then proceeded to ask him kindly to remove one scary monstrous creature at a time. Rending assault cannons and str 8 auto cannons make for a very impressive gun line no matter how few of them there are. It was seize ground and by the end of the game all he had was a squad of genestealers trying to huff and puff and blow their way through a landraider. This time a squad of scoring purifiers in a storm raven won the game for me (again grand strategy is one of the most useful army upgrades you can ever have). The only time I really took loses was when I ran Mordrak and his ghosts into a squad of bone sword/lash whip Warriors, we all found out then whose afraid of no ghosts.

On a side note psystrike missiles are brutally unfair against a Swarm lord

I like the new Grey Knights they have a bunch of new rules and new units that give you a lot of cool list options. I think Mordrak and his ghost buddies will always be my primary HQ unit even though all they've done is act as a walking storm bolter bunker. The ability to go "Boo!" first turn and imaginary friend terminators is to priceless for me to pass up having in a list. I'm also sold on shooting Dreadnoughts because they are going to be super cool to build and super fun to play, one of these days I want to outflank them right after a squad of sentinels outflanks. As for the rest of what my army will be thats going to be a continuing experiment, perhaps a future post will show the results of that.

I myself wont really dabble into the Inquisitors and henchmen though, I really feel they screwed up that portion of the codex. I really wanted real storm troopers and not to have to take one jerk to make that portion of the codex playable. Its the same problem that Vulcan lists have, apparently you cant field a good inquisitional army unless you bring this one guy. Although he does have a bird......

Book Review: Flesh and Iron by Henry Zou

So I just recently finished Henry Zou's second Bastion Wars Novel: Flesh and Iron. I will say I wish I remembered what Emperor's Mercy was about so I could get a little more context into the overall Bastion Wars BUT I will add that is not at all neccessary to have read the first Bastion Wars novel to read this one. And I know I will remember this one, which may be more indicative of quality. Then again, the first one is about an Inquisitor (I am pretty sure) which is pretty generic in terms of 40k novels. However, this one is, I dare say, far more unique than most 40k novels out there, and well worth a read IMO.

For one, I enjoyed the uniqueness of the Imperial Guard regiment: The 31st Riverine. I had actually had an idea like this in my mind for sometime, being from an area where airboats and such are common. Think of this regiment as an equivalent to the Vietnam war river patrols, except entirely crewed by men from Alabama and Louisiana (their planet is even Ouisiva. My spelling may be a little off, but obviously drawn from Louisiana). These men are swamp men, and fight swamp orks on their homeworld (the ideal enemy is any for a swamp regiment). This concept of Cajun Guard is pretty cool and unique.

Another unique Imperial Invention is the great Argo Nauticals- large battleship/aircraft carrier hybrids as far as I could tell. Being in the Navy myself, I found this COOL.

I also highly enjoyed how he switched between the Riverine and the Rebel/Renegade perspective thoughout the book. Mr. Zou does a really good job of getting the reader to empathize with Chaos, rather than just see it as evil. In addition, he does one thing I always appreciate- gets the reader to wholly HATE the ecclesiarchy. I may be an Imperial fan in the 40k universe, but those guys ALWAYS piss me off.

As well, there is a really good twist at about the 3/4 mark that follows through well to the end, rather than the book just ending on the "Conquer the Castle" moment as many BL books are oft to do.

The book is very Heart of Darkness/Apocalypse Now in nature and imagery. Very good writing style and story tempo. I honestly cannot find any flaw in the book and look forward to the next Bastion Wars novel (and will more than likely re-read the first when I get a chance).

All in all, 5 out of 5 aquillas!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Safe in the Far East

As some of you know I recently deployed to Japan as part of the US Navy. This is just a shout out to let you all know I am safe and sound despite the recent events. If you wish to know more, look into the USS Essex on the news or the Essex Facebook page.
Although I would say I am worried about one thing: Godzilla. Massive Earthquake, Volcano Erupting, Tsunami, Nuclear Incident. Sounds like the start to a Godzilla movie to me...

As for my involvement in the hobby, I miss it very much and can't wait to get back to shore to continue work on my Blood Angels and Genswick. But being onboard a ship has also reinspired my desire to play more BFG. Maybe write a story about BFG from my newly building shipboard knowledge.

I have met some gamers over here, but it appears as if the players are stuck in a 4th edition playstyle mindset. It is truly bizzare.

Read a few books since coming over here (The last in the Sigmar trilogy, Fireborn, Fear the Alien, Flesh and Iron). I have not been dissapointed with any of them. If you are a fan of the nightlords and/or salamanders series, make sure to pick up Fear the Alien, as there are some great cross connected stories in there.

Have a fine Hobby Day