So I had the opportunity to play in a fun little tournament in a shop across the Great Bay of San Francisco, known as Games of Berkeley.
Preparing for Success
I knew I wanted to bring the new Chaos Marines to the tournament, but I still haven’t figured out exactly what works best, so I decided to take a chance and try some things that I hadn’t used before.
Chaos Lord: Terminator Armour, Mark of Nurgle, Lightning Claw, Chainfist
5 Chaos Terminators: 5 Combi-plasma, 3 Power Axes, 1 Power Sword, 1 Chainfist
10 Chaos Marines: 2 Plasma Guns, Aspiring Champion with Power Sword, in Rhino with Havoc Launcher
5 Plague Marines: 2 Plasma Guns, in Rhino with Havoc Launcher
5 Plague Marines: 2 Plasma Guns
10 Chaos Cultists: Flamer
10 Chaos Cultists: Flamer
5 Havocs: 4 Autocannons
Forgefiend: Hades Autocannons
Aegis Defense Line
So this time I was using my freshly built Terminators, Plague Marines, and a second Rhino with Havoc Launcher. It was a huge risk, but I felt that the new units were pretty damn good, and fairly straightforward to use.
Game 1: Imperial Guard
My first opponent was Jake (?) with his Imperial Guard, it was Emperor’s Will with Dawn of War deployment. From the get-go I was intimidated by his double Vendettas, 2 Russes, Al’rahem outflanking with a few units, and a meaty blob behind an Aegis defending his Objective.
The first few turns of the game were pretty devastating for the guard. My own Chaos Marines and Cultists defending the wall and going to ground, while my Heldrakes torched everything defending his flag. By the 3rd turn his army was devastated, one Vendetta down to a lucky Vector Strike, killing all the occupants, and his advance on my far flank slowed by my Autocannon Havocs. In a last ditch effort to contest my objective and tie the game, he hovered with his Vendetta, to prepare for a 5th turn push, though unfortunately for him, my Terminators who arrived late (due to a mishap) ended up behind the Vendetta, pummeling it with combi-plasma fire, bringing it down, and ensuring that he had nothing to contest my objective with.
Game 1 went to Chaos!
Game 2: Sisters of Battle
After winning my first game, I was poised to play against Obadiah’s Sisters of Battle. We were playing The Scouring with Hammer and Anvil Deployment, and fortunately the placement of the objectives was fairly balanced, and neither of us really seemed to have a big advantage out the gate.
As with my previous game, I used my Heldrakes to pound on his Scoring troops, with my Havocs, Forgefiend and Havoc Launchers adding to the fray, disintegrating his rhinos as they advanced across the board. With a lucky turn of events, I managed to kill Celestine (for the first time) right off the bat, and she fortunately didn’t get up for a couple turns. Due to a little careless playing a tad later in the game, both of my Heldrakes were shot in the rear and taken down by a mixture of Exorcists, Retributors and a blob of Sisters, as I forgot to turbo boost them off the board… Doh! Fortunately for me though, I managed to advance my Chaos Marine squad through some cover to claim another objective before the game ended, sealing my victory.
Game 2 goes to Chaos!
Game 3: Craftworld Eldar
The final game of the tournament, I was pit against Mike Entropo, who is a very well accomplished Eldar player. For this tournament, he was running an Avatar, Farseer, 5×6 Dire Avengers in Wave Serpents and 3×10 Firedragons in Wave Serpents. We played Crusade (3 objectives) with Dawn of War deployment. I won the roll off to deploy and go first, though as of an open, Mike seized the initiative.
The first turn was devastating and my Forgefiend was annihilated by a unit of Firedragons which managed to advance and through turning the vehicle from it’s side to it’s rear gained a light extra bit of distance to be in range with their meltaguns. That turn also saw the transport for my 10 marines get wrecked. Through the rest of the game, my Chaos Marine squad got obliterated trying to advance through cover towards the far objective. His avatar went on a rampage, trying to eat up extra victory points by killing my champions through his Warlord trait. I quickly retreated from the flank with the avatar, forming up around the only objective on my side of the table. My Chaos Lord who had rolled the Warlord trait to become scoring, deepstriked near the middle objective and with the help of the Heldrakes, cleared out anything resembling scoring or that could contest.
Game 3, a Chaos victory!
Conclusion: 2nd Place, 3-0!!!
I had gone undefeated in my first tournament with my Chaos Marines. I learned a lot from my games, and really learned to value Cultists behind an Aegis line! The Heldrakes did as I expected and my Plasmanator squad did quite a nice job, killing a tank in every game (Vendetta, Exorcist, Wave Serpent) with their combi-plasma the turn they arrived, then were a general pain in the ass thereafter. The 5-man Plague Marines did admirably, defending their objectives while never really dying.
So why didn’t I win first place? Well, my friend Pete aka Bugsculptor also went 3-0! At the end, since this was a friendly tournament, we decided to RoShamBo for it. Pete is a deft opponent both with his Tyranids, and his capability to beat Rock with Paper. Well played sir… well played.