Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Back from NOVA: What a rush!

Well - lots of buildup over the past year; a lot of waffling on lists, maybe a little bit of Tyranid bravado, but the reality was a thousand times better than I could have wished.  I went 4-4 overall, 3-1 on day 1 in the random brackets, I started on table 2 and ended up the rest of the day getting all my games broadcast live, wearing a microphone, but only 2 were recorded due to technical issues.  So much for remaining silent and only being thought an idiot though - I'd say I removed all doubt!  Day 2 was less forgiving, going 1-3 in Tier 2 (just behind the championship bracket) with two of the three coming down to the last round in close matches.  I only had one loss that I would chalk up as being close to a blowout, but it came against Sean Nayden, in one of my favorite matches of the tournament.  I never dreamed I would do so well; the overall rankings should be interesting to see.  More after the jump..

After three straight weekends of 20+ hours of painting, painting until 2am Monday, Tuesday, and painting all night Wednesday (no sleep!) I arrived on Thursday evening about 6pm, helped out where I could and eventually ran across fellow Tyranid player Kennedy from 40K for the New Professional and ended up hanging out with the Malifaux crowd that evening chatting back and forth while I finished painting my broodlord and second prime.   I also met another Tyranid player in Todd of the Columbus Road Crew, who schooled me in a friendly open game on what poisoned furious hormagaunts can do when backed up by a winged O/A tyrant.  Great bunch of guys and I had a blast hanging out with them on and off through the weekend.  Go Army!

No time at the moment to give a full breakdown, but wanted to find and post some of the links before it got too much further on.  Here's the rundown of the games, armies, results, and links to the three videos.  I'll work on posting better batreps soon.

My list: 
Prime: BS/LW, Regen
Prime: BS/LW
3x2 HG
2x10 Genestealers w/tox, w/BL (w/scything talons) (11 models per..)
Tervigon w/TS, AG, catalyst, onslaught
Tervigon w/TS, AG, catalyst
2x 10 termagants
1x2 carnifex brood w/2x TL Devs, frag spines
1x3 biovore brood

My tournament MVPs were the biovores and broodlords.  Both overperformed, with the biovores frequently scoring ~10 wounds in a turn and the broodlords enduring 2+ rounds of massed fire and/or assault by themselves.  Interestingly, the dual-dakka fexstar surprised all but one or two opponents with its almost ridiculous torrent ability.

Day 1:
Round 1 - vs. Sandwyrm's gorgeous Tallarn IG.  - Eked out a win, but we had to go all the way down past the 3 conditions to victory points; I won by 25.  First game against IG and I had a good idea what to expect, but I don't think he'd really seen a fexstar.  We'd started on table 2 and this moved me up to table 1.

Game 2 vs. Kevin's Orks - this was recorded by the 11th Company guys here on Ustream.  - My opponent was playing a Ghaz/Nobs plus 2 mobs in battlewagons with deffrollas, nob bikerz list.  First game against Orks. Was worried at first but ended up nearly tabling him, but it was a near thing, and I really got a chance to show my unfamiliarity with often basic rules in a live game setting (very different to sit about playtesting by oneself with the rulebook open, and being on camera under time limits).

Game 3 vs. Dan's spectacular Cult of the Fursaken (Skaven counts-as DE); we didn't get this game recorded as the batteries on our mics died about halfway through.  Dan was gracious, patient, and taught me how to do the wound allocation shuffle.  It probably cost him the game, but I think he wanted to play against hard competition as much as I did, and was willing to help make it that way even if the player across the table from him wasn't up to that level.  Beyond a class act and a true sportsman.

Game 4 vs. Andrew's Grey Knights.  This match was captured by the 11th Company guys and is here on Ustream as well. This was a pretty close loss, but not what I expected from a GK list.  I made a HUGE rules knowledge error here in the fourth turn, forgetting the rule to roll 3d6 wounds PER squad w/in 6 inches when a Tervigon dies, vice 3d6 wounds (split) TO termagant squads w/in 6 inches.  I hadn't gotten past turn 4 in the previous 3 games and was hyper aware of the slowplay aspect of my army and knew how much time looking up rules took away. I wasn't about to check it w/o being forced.  In the end it didn't make a difference, but that is a rule a Tyranid player should never get wrong; especially one with a Tyranid-focused blog!  More on that here: http://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/420/392524.page

Day 2 in Tier 2:
Game 5 vs. Lee's Space Wolves.  I honestly think hosing down his wolf lord with one of the dakkafexes in turn 2 won me the game, even though it didn't kill him, as it made him gunshy and tentative.  Coupled with the biovores taking out his long fang pack leaders...

Game 6 vs. Farmpunk's GK.  Both pretty burned out by that time, this was a much needed laid back game for KP.  I did a right side castle with a gant and tervigon "open" in the left flank, hoping to draw him in where I could slam the castle into his flank as he went for the vulnerable terv.  He went for it - but I couldn't get the castle to move (my center-deployed genestealers rolled no higher than a 3 on any move through cover or run roll for 4 straight turns if that gives you an idea).  KPs went to the GKs, as I was only able to kill a rhino due to misjudging my HG range vs. his Stormravens for 2 turns in a row.

Game 7 vs. Taylor's DE.  Objectives primary - and he had Night Shields on all his vehicles.  Suddenly limited to an 18" max range, I tried to castle the 3 objectives, but in the last round got blown off the center, pulled off the left because I had strung my squad too far forward from the objective trying to keep him from being able to contest it, and had the right contested for a loss.  Great game though.

Game 8 vs. Sean's drop Salamanders.  Spearhead, table quarters.  He went first and boxed me in with scouting speeders then drop pods.  Not having enough ability to deal with AV12 and needing to kill 3 AV13 dreads bearing heavy flamer gifts in my backfield kept me hemmed in and I barely got one unit outside my own quarter.  Absolute blast as it was the first game where an opponent just flat out stymied me from the get-go.  Plus I had some horrific rolls and he awarded me with an "Ordo Inepticus" dice - great opponent, funny game.

Overall - an amazing time, and mad kudos to MVB, the judges, the dedicated terrain builders, and other staff for putting together an unparalleled gaming experience, and a huge thanks to the 11th Company crew for taking the time, effort, and money to do the livecasting.  It is my opinion, maybe biased as a volunteer, but from everything that I've seen this year and last, NOVA has set a new standard for the social aspect of the tabletop wargaming hobby.  I can think of no finer praise.

To all my opponents, the people I met, and the staff - thanks for the great time, the patience, and laughs.  Looking forward to the next time we meet.


  1. Nice to hear the Nids gave a good showing, love that the Biovores did well, I must be the only guy who actually likes the biovore model and this may just be my excuse to paint up another two and get playing with them.(One didn't really cut it last time I fielded him)

    I assume the Fex Star was both Primes and the Fex? could you go through some tactics for the list if you get a chance? It'd be great to see how you went about playing it.

    In the meantime I'll take a look at the video batrep for ideas! :)

    Grats again,


  2. Congrats to doing fine in your first big tournament with Tyranids. Like your list too.
    In your first game against Orks in the combat between Nob Bikers and Genestealers where you learned about charging through terrain (and why it sucks that Nids don't have assault grenades), it seems you forgot about your Broodlords psychich powers?

  3. I consistently forgot or chose not to use my broodlord psyker powers due to time; I knew about the charge into cover aspect which is why my fexes have frag spines though. The place that hurt the most was vs Taylor's DE when he parked a unit of wyches near an objective in cover and my stealers got nuked down to 3 models on the way in and no way to survive the planned assault to take the objective and could only contest.

  4. This is my favorite Nova post so far.
    Great stuff, Ghostin!

    Thanx for repping the Nids!

    You'll be on Top-X this friday...

  5. @Stokie_Rich: Thanks for the kind words! I'm working on a post about the army, what worked, what didn't, etc... in the interim there are a bunch of tactica out there on fexstars. I'll be sure to include those as well.