Sunday, July 21, 2013

Quick thought on Apoc Datasheets and "Deployment"

Quick thought on Apoc datasheets.

Look at all the superheavies. None of the weapons are hull, turret or sponson mounted.

Time to convert your Shadowswords boys. Turret mounted Volcano Cannons.

To me this is a major oversight as now WYSIWYG is the primary rule concerning weapon facings rather than spelled out mounting types.

Just something to poitn out.

For "Deployment" for those of you who are steady readers and don't know, I am in the Navy. This coming week I deploy for 9 months. I will get on and blog when I can but don't expect too much from me. And typically book reviews.

HOWEVER Sepulchre is not dead. I have 3 other contributors who should be putting up content occasionally. And after this period of 9 months I should never be away for so long again. So stick with me through the rough times ahead. See you all on the other side.

The Emperor Protects.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

10 Things I Like/Hate about You Eldar – Discordian

So within the course of 3 months my first and second armies got released. It has been a fun couple of months, maybe a little expensive……. but fun none the less.

I’ve been able get several games in with the new elder, even some with dark elder allies and one in apocalypse using the first edition rules. So I figured it was about time I did a little list of my likes and dislikes so far.

1. All of the new models are gorgeous. They look fast, sleek, and definitely alien from a human design aesthetic.
Come on you know you want to sell us newer ones....

2. The book is beautiful and had a great lay out. It’s a great mixing of iconic classic art and a bunch of new pieces. The special edition is kind of pricy for what it is though considering it really is just a standard version with a dust cover.

3. Eldar are fast and deadly in close combat just like their dark kin. This is the first codex to have a lot of different varieties of ap 2 and rending close combat weapons that aren’t strapped to large monstrous creatures. I think they make up for this pretty well with their lower than normal str scores (the claw might be a little pushing it though :P).

4. Farseers being base mastery 3 is pretty great. It really makes Eldrad have some competition with his generic versions. The Farseer table is kind of lack lacklustre, but it combined with either divination or telepathy can give you a lot of options before deployment to.

5. Spiritseer are really unique and playable. They gave them access to cool buff/debuff spells and they make Wraithgurad troops to boot. I’m bummed about not having warlocks with my wraith units, but my old Bonesinger model will just be my new Spiritseer. I guess the real bonus is that my wraithguard leader now can look out sir on a 2+.

6. Warwalkers can dance like crazy since they scout and they reroll battle focus. They have the potential of having 18” displacement from where they first deployed turn 1, and that my friends is how you get to side armour.

Dancing Time!

7. I want to thank GW for making the Eldar planes have Vector Dancer, though still waiting for the Dark elder planes guys.

8. I really like battle focus; it is definitely a curve ball kind of thing. It can be used either for allowing a little bonus to short range weapons or as a mini version of jetpack to protect fragile foot units from retaliation.

9. It seems every xenos codex is getting neat unique shooting mechanics. Necrons got tesla and gauss, Dark Eldar got mass poison, Tau got Ion, and now Eldar got monofilament. I was expecting it to be like the doom weaver from white dwarf, but instead we get a rending weapon that gets better on slow people.

10. Wave serpents have become worth their cost. Last edition they had become a simple means to deliver fire dragons, their cost was really high for a transport and if you wanted to turn it into an anything more it got worse.

1. The Wave serpent hits this list too because I think they overdid it a little. The shield gun in my opinion is just too good, ignoring cover is a really great ability and it really fills the str 7 hole that was missing in the last edition. But when you start combining it with the scatter laser and holofields, you’re getting a battle tank that puts out 4 str 6 and 4ish str 7 shots all at bs 4 (most likely all twinlinked) that floats around with a 4+ cover save for only 135 points. I think there’s a reason wave serpents magically became direct only overnight.


2. What the hell happened to Yriel? Granted he wasn't seen much last edition, but this time around it’s almost like they didn't want to sell his model. He’s still a close combat dude and he got a little cheaper, but he lost the ability to take on Teqs and his re-roll successful save gimmick really hurts him. He will straight up buzz saw though anything that doesn't have a 2+ save, but that really isn't needed in this edition. I honesty wished they had given him the Wraithguard/blade troops rule; but they just pigeon holed him as a cheap close combat character that just doesn't add anything your army.

3. Aspect warriors got some nifty new rules, but I guess we will have to wait for new models. Scorpion, Dragon, and Banshee models are still good considering their age, but everyone else has a serious case of the fuglies. Also Banshees no grenades? Are you freaking kidding me?

4. I guess I can understand why Warlocks became legit psykers. But did they need to still be leadership 8? They are one wound 35 points models that will be risking perils to auto kill themselves. Also still being an upgrade sergeant of sorts for the guardian units makes it silly they didn't at least bump it to 9.

5. I own 10 metal Wraithguard that where on 25mm bases. Thankfully the new models are pretty close in size and I had 10 40mm bases on hand to convert them to 6th. But it was still a pain in the ass.

6. Wraithblades are an interesting unit and when you start to buff/debuff intended targets. But like all the other Eldar close combat specialist (minus striking scorpions) they really don’t have a reliable delivery system. I don’t see myself fielding them, if they are walking I want them to have guns and if I’m putting them in transports I’m going to give them scyths.

Kind of bummed Iyanna doesn't have legit rules 
outside of a scenario version

7. I love versatile models that approach the game differently, which is why when I first heard about the wraith plane that made people run away I was super excited. Then I saw the rules and price I wasn’t. I get having a plane designed for air to ground and sure you can build an army around scaring people away, the problem is that GW priced the plane so high that there’s really no desire to field it outside of that one trick build idea. Its guns are also silly being supposedly heavier versions of another gun, but end up being largely weaker.
Also as a side note I’m guessing this is why marker-lights lost the ability to lower leadership scores for pinning tests. One of these in a tau army would be bonkers.

8. Eldar have a serious anti-air issue. Yes they have one of the best strike fighters in the game, but in the 6th edition environment that has attempted to adjust to Vendettas and Helldrakes, it’s almost a joke. It’s one interceptor gun away from being generally useless for its point cost.

Eldar really have no other options other than fortifications (walkers and reapers are too expensive in this roll). You can put an exarch with cool powers on a quad gun or something like you could always do, but opponent can usually kill the gun easily enough if it worries them.

                                     cawcaw caww. caw caw cawcaw caw cawcaw cawcaw caw caw caw caw caw cawcaw.
Versatility right here

9. The Wraithknight is just too big and too expensive.  It looks like a super-heavy to me and I do not like this trend of bigger and bigger robots for 40K. Also what is up with its weapon choices? It can have 4 weapons but only ever shoot 2, that sword looks awesome on a KNIGHT model but is clearly the worse choice, and for some reason it doesn't it get access to other Wraith variant weapons.

10. What ever happened to force org swaps? Other than wraithguard and ginger step child wraithblades, there’s nothing. I’m really hoping the supplements will start pushing in that direction.

So that’s it so far. Anyone thing I missed?

Monday, July 1, 2013

Model Review: Space Marine Masters of the Chapter

So with the new edition of Apoc, GW released 4 more "masters of the chapter" to represent the captains of the 5th, 6th, 8th and 9th Companies of Space Marines and with the original set (which covered 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 10th Company), you have almost the entire chapter covered.

Now I am not going to review the positives/negatives of finecast. Finecast is here to stay, whether you like it or not, and all models are going to be released in finecast if they are not part of a plastic kit.

First I am going to start with the old Masters, from the first Apoc release. You'll see why soon.

Look at these guys. They are pretty awesome IMO. They are as ornate as a captain, or even chapter master if you so chose to use them as such, should be. Great details and functional form. They also are very nicely equipped and give you sometimes hard to model/bit options otherwise, such as the thunderhammer and stormshield. I also love that you can swap the heads for helmets. Each one is true to the role they are intended to fill in the chapter without really over doing it in any absurd fashion. One model has great motion while the rest are really static. HOWEVER, the static feature of the one with the shield carriers an air of stalwart defence, while the others have a sense of stoic superiority and wisdom of command, so it works. And lastly, they are very clearly equipped with a specific weapon. Now the formation doesn't (or at least it didn't, we will see if that changes) require specific weapons loadouts, so you could use whatever models you wanted as SM captains, but these guys fit the role and are usefully equipped for a Character. By that I mean Characters should have a good CC loadout. That is where their boosted stats are most worth the cost. 1 shot at BS5 is nice, but is it worth the +100 points you paid for it?

Now lets start with what I think is the best of the new Chapter Masters
This guy is the new Lord Executioner. I will probably grab one for my Blood Angels at some point. He is pretty sweet and can make a great captain or vanguard vet, no problem. I like him for all the reasons that I liked the original masters. He is appropriately detailed, clearly defined and clearly equipped. Okay, maybe not the clearest, but it can only be 1 of a 3 things: Power Axe, Glaive Encarmine, or Relic Blade, and two of those aren't even in the same codex, so really just one of 2 things. So as I said, well designed. They even made an Iron Halo that doesn't look like it is an extra bit. It belongs. My one complaint is the chest. I never was a fan of the harnesses for Jump Packs, but that is an aethstetic thing and personal preference. A little static of a pose, but there is a hint of movement, it has logical flow, and  anything more dynamic may have prevented the high level of detail work. Finally, he has a feel of grim determination that fits with the old masters and is well suited to someone titled "Lord Executioner".

From here on out we go down IMO
This is the new Master of Relics. As far as being a captain goes, I am not a really big fan. As I said before, I believe captains should be equipped for the CC department. A Combi-plasma means that this expensive unit is shooting a bolter all game except 1 turn. Whoopee. I guess it is nice if you really wanted to equip you captain as such, but who does? Furthermore, what SM player doesn't have a combi-weapon bit floating around. I will say however you at least know what he is equipped with. Overall, he is less ornate and the servo skull and satellite dish are just a bit odd, but not overdoing it and not too ugly. They are appropriately "grim dark" I guess.  A tunic would have been nice and keeping in tradition with captains and given it more of that ornate feel. This model is ever more static that the last, but does not manage to capture the stoic nobility of the old masters. He just looks grumpy. His head actually looks like Darth Vader with his helmet off, rather than a paragon of mankind.
I actually think I will grab this model too, but not for a Captain. Sorry, but this guy is getting a demotion- Devastator Sergeant. IMO he is perfect for this role. His armour is of the appropriate level of ornateness for a veteran, he is equipped well for a Devastator Squad, as it will be static and shooting the whole time, so a plasma shot and bolter support is entirely appropriate there. I could also see, maybe with the removal of the servo skull and radar dish, the use of the model in a Sternguard squad as well.

This is the new Master of Marches. IMO if you get one, paint him entirely in bronze or stone and mount him to terrain, because that is the most useful application of this mini. Makes him some sort of PA system for a town square. His armour is actually nicely ornate and befits a captain, but those weird speakers and the cherub with scroll is more befitting the parade ground rather than battlefield, and last I checked this was Warhammer 40k, not chapter wide inspection 40k or pass and review 40k. He just doesn't fit on the battlefield. As well, they turned his scepter/baton into a cane. He should be hold it high, marshaling his troops forward, not leaning on it like a crutch. Compare it to the old master with his sword downward. He at least looks to be in contemplation after/before a fight, ready to don his helmet and heft the sword at any moment to march to battle. And this new guy doesn't convey that. For that matter, what is he ever equipped with. A pistol. Is the baton a power mace? It doesn't look it. It looks like a cane. As for it being static, it isn't as noble as the old masters, but I will say with the cherub and scroll, he at least fits what he is doing. Though he seems to be reading a boring text rather than a fiery oratory. Overall not a poorly sculpted model, and rather nice looking. Just some poor choices that make him useless for gaming and those speakers as just really weird. Don't SM all have earpieces/helmet comms? Why does he need those?

This is the new Master of Rites. Just pass on this guy. Just pass. He fails in all aspects. First, if you do get him, do yourself a favour and just don't mount the Servoskull PA system. It just doesn't work. Incorporate it into your terrain or a vehicle instead. Now lets look at the model. He does look like a captain, but a poorly done one. Once again, just like the Master of Marches, what is with the speaker. Why do SM need that. And in adding it, they ruined the Iron Halo. Where the Lord Executioner's Halo looks cool and integral to the model, this looks like a weird bit added to the back. Now I want you to scroll up to the old masters and look at the one holding his tunic and then come back to this guy. Now the old one has a look of arrogance in the way he grips his cloak. This guy seems to be holding his up to keep it out of a puddle or something. It is just weird and inappropriate for the battlefield. And speaking of battlefield, what are this guys weapons. Once more a pistol. That's it. That is not a power mace, that is for sure. Maybe if they had doubled the size of the icon so it was more like a Crozius that chaplains use, but this is just come sort of sceptre. As well, it is rather static, but not in a good way. He seems to be just casually pacing while yelling at the top of his lungs, likely screaming "WHERE IS MY SWORD! WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THIS THING?" He has none of the nobility of the old models, nor functionality of form of the other 3 new ones.
This guy would work if you were modelling a diorama of a chapter mass in their fortress monastery, walking down the aisles during processional or to give a benediction. But otherwise there is nothing. He is $22 of finecast that would be better spent on this:
At least these guys look cool on the table and clearly fought in a battle.
Overall GW strayed from the originals and the air of coolness and functionality they captured. They tried to make these new guys "Blanche-jitsu" and in doing so, ruined 2 models. The first one is great IMO and the second has its uses, but I just don't get what the sculpters were thinking with the last two. They need to be useable in games of 40k as well, not just Apocalypse.