Saturday, 22 December 2012

Caledonia Uprising 2013

Tim King's Caledonia Uprising was the first tournament I attended after getting back into tournaments in 2011. It's a really cool event and got me hooked into tournament playing. Caledonia 2012 was the venue for my first award (Best Tyranid General) and so I've got high hopes for Caledonia 2013. It is also the venue for an on-going wager with Gill from Ramblings of a Dieting Wargamer. See that banner at the top of the blog, see me at position 53 (my final placing at Caledonia 2011), see Gill's name at position 54? He does, every time he looks at the blog. So I made a bet at Cale 2012 that if he finished higher than me I'd replace the banner, well its still there! So the same wager has been made for Cale 2013 too. So I'd better bring my 'A' game!

At Caledonia this year there are two tournaments in one, there's the main event on Sat / Sun, but there's also a little 1000pts tournament on Friday night. I'm planning to enter them both. I’ll look at the 1000pts tournament in another post because you don’t need to pre-register your army list for it, where as the main event requires army lists to be submitted by the 29th December.

Now Caledonia will also mark the start of my 40 games in 40K. I’m also looking to get some good practise in with the Tyranids prior to Adepticon so I can give my best performance in the US. I’ve learnt a few lessons from taking the swarm to the GT heat and Blog wars as well as listening to a few podcasts. It seems, in the UK at least, people are quoting the Tyranids as one of the top flight armies at the moment, along with Wraith-wing and Screamer / Flamer spam. So I’ve a lot to live up to.

There have been a few changes I’m marking to the army list I used at the previous tournaments. There are still a couple of musts, two flying Tyrants and two Tervigons. I had considered swapping out one of the Tyrants for the Swarmlord and I may still do so for another tournament but for the moment I’ll keep the utility of the Tyrants. I have given them both an upgrade. One has got Old Adversary, giving preferred enemy to units within 6” of him is useful to boast the devour armed Gaunts. As long as I plan a little ahead I should be able to make sure the Tyrant can fly to where ever the spore pod lands. Plus it makes the Tyrant more effective too.

The Warlord Tyrant has picked up Hive Commander. For most games this will increase the chance of the Doom and the Devourer Gaunts from coming in on turn two. Also, given that he doesn’t have to be on the board to gain the benefit (unlike Lictors for example) so against Daemons I can put both my Tyrants in reserve to avoid them dying to their alpha strike. It would also allow me to put a troop choice into outflank, but not being able to assault from reserves has rendered this a little pointless.

The Gargoyles also picked up toxin sacs to allow them to bring down monstrous creatures. In a lot of the tournament games I’ve played they’ve ended up charging Daemon Princes, Dread Knights or for that matter toughness 4 Space Marines. Giving them poisonous attacks means they can do some damage to the unit while they tar pit it.

I’m also trying a unit of Biovores. Their barrage weapons mean they can snipe out special weapons, icons and possibly characters too. They can’t reliably take out an IC due to their 2+ ‘look out sir’ roll but a none independent character has to get lucky to pass off all the wounds. Plus with a fairly strong large blast template it’s another tool to whittle down Imperial Guard blob squads.

All this costs points and so there have been some deductions from the army. First off is I’ve dropped a Zoanathrope. I’m hoping a unit of two will still give me some of the utility powers I need. I’ve also dropped the onslaughts from the Tervigons. The plan here is to roll the psychic powers for the Tyrants and Zoanathropes first, if they pick up some decent powers I’d be tempted to swap the Tervigons too, if I don’t get at least 1 Endurance on the Zoanthropes I’ll leave at least one of the Tervigons on their codex powers for the feel no pain.

I’ve also had to drop a few Gaunts and Gargoyles from the various units. I’m a little concerned that I’ve reduced the number of starting models in the army which will limit my ability to bubble wrap during deployment. It was a tactic that proved very useful vs. first turn drops such as Daemons and Drop Pods. If I get first turn or against normal reserves I get at least one turn of spawning from the Tervigons before they land. Fingers cross I’ve not reduced my model count too much.

So the army I am proposing to take to Caledonia 2013 is;-

HQ1 - Hive Tyrant: Wings, Twin Linked Devourers, Hive Commander [285]
HQ2 - Hive Tyrant: Wings, Twin Linked Devourers, Old Aversary        [285]
Troop1 – Tervigon: Catalyst, Adrenal Glands, Toxin Sacs [195]
Troop2 – Tervigon: Catalyst, Adrenal Glands, Toxin Sacs [195]
Troop3 – Gaunts: 11 Gaunts [55]
Troop4 – Gaunts: 10 Gaunts [50]
Troop5 – Gaunts: 15 Gaunts with Devourers in Spore [190]
Elite1 - Hive Guard: 3 Hive Guard [150]
Elite2 - DOOM!: Doom in Spore [130]
Elite3 – Zoanthropes: 2 Zoanthropes [120]
Fast1 – Gargoyles: 15 Gargoyles with Toxin Sacs [105]
Heavy1 – Biovores: 2 Biovores [90]

The other thing I hoping to do is remember all the little tricks and rules I've been forgetting in previous games. Some of theses are
  • Rolling for my zoanthropes powers before the Tervigons as mentioned above.
  • Challenging with my Tyrants if I charge a smaller unit to ensure I don't break it in 1 round of combat.
  • The precise shots from my Tyrants.  
 Well I'll post again with my thoughts on the 1000pts army lists, but until then Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and Yaay I survived the Mayan apocalypse!

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