Episode 45: Green Skins vs. The World (Orks vs. Tournament 2000 Points)

It finally happened. The culmination tournament for my Escalation League was today and I've been preparing for it a long time. For this go I took my Orks, I wasn't sure what the field would look like and my Tau is't quite ready yet in terms of modelling/painting. I did manage to completely finish my Orks in terms of their paint, they still need basing and Bolters/Shootas to be WYSIWYG but the Tournament Organizer said I was fine as long as I made it clear what everyone had. I also need a Mad Dok Grotsnike but couldn't get one on such short notice.

The format was all ITC Missions with three, 2 Hour Rounds. Originally pairings were supposed to be based on the League standings however we only had like seven people from the League show, the rest were from other local metas and stores. Overall I was fine with that since the other stores are a bit more competitive and I wanted to get put through my paces to see if all my testing and theory-crafting would bear fruit.

The 2 Hour Rounds was certainly a problem as my army does take longer than most to Deploy and move, especially early on before I've really lost models. Generally the first tow turns take the longest and then the game picks up, that's why 2.5 or 2.75 Hour Rounds are pretty standard. But the rules are the rules so I made sure I was mentally prepared to get early Scenario leads and always be ahead for dice down situations.

For these games I'm going to give an abridged version, I did not have time to take the kind of pictures you might be used to with the strict time requirement. I'll give an abridged account of each game, as best I can, and then discuss my feelings on the whole even to wrap up. Sound good? Good.



Orks
Warboss w/ Big Choppa & Attack Squig
Warboss w/ Big Choppa & Attack Squig w/ Legendary Fighter

Big Mek on Warbike w/ KFF and Choppa
Big Mek on Warbike w/ KFF and Choppa

Weirdboy
Weirdboy
Weirdboy
Weirdboy
Weirdboy
Weirdboy
Weirdboy

Mad Dok Grotsnik
Painboy w/ Killsaw and Grot Orderly

29 Ork Boyz w/ Shootas & Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa
29 Ork Boyz w/ Shootas & Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa
29 Ork Boyz w/ Shootas & Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa
29 Ork Boyz w/ Shootas & Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa
29 Ork Boyz w/ Shootas & Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa
29 Ork Boyz w/ Shootas & Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa


I've talked about this list quite a bit. Plain and simple I think it's the best Ork build at the moment for the competitive meta. I'm not into the Big Squiggoth as it plus the Tankbustas cost too much, are too big a target, and the Big Squig has required guns which are almost literally useless. Until there is a major change in the meta or a Codex for Orks drops, this is where I'm at.

I'll discuss the list more in the video at the end of this report, for those interested.



Round 1

Instead of going off League pairings the TO just randomized everyone because we had so many non-League Players. This put me against Aaron, a great local player with access to a lot of armies. At the last event he took a strong AdMech build and finished around middle of the pack, this time he was taking a fairly gimmicky list that I don't think he'd really tried before.

Magnus the Red w/ Tenacious Survivor
Khorne Lord of Skulls w/ Ichor Cannon, Skullhurler
Khorne Lord of Skulls w/ Ichor Cannon, Skullhurler
Renegade Knight w/ Rapid Fire Battle Cannon, Avenger Gatling Cannon

This army is what I call a gatekeeper list, it cannot win any reasonably sized tournament because it's too one-dimensional. The army will either win big or lose big, every time, and allows little room for player skill or lack thereof. I was honestly surprised that Aaron went with this since he is competitively focused and I just don't see this rewarding to run nor very powerful. Obviously the idea is to Magnus a Lord of Skulls into the opponent's face Turn 1 and have a ton of resilient models and great shooting. Unfortunately it cannot do anything in ITC Missions since it's not terribly mobile, has no numbers, and any serious army can deal with at least one Knight equivalent per turn meaning even keeping one model on an Objective in the back isn't safe.

Out missions was Secure and Control which uses Spearhead Deployment. Me and Aaron confused this with Front-Line Assault and didn't notice until we'd deployed since our table was kind of away from everyone else. Aaron was fine with that and we "gentleman'd" to keep our Deployment without TO objection. This absolutely favors me since it gives Aaron less room to stand in the back but honestly he can't really do that since he'd only have four guns to shoot. So I think it was a wash.

Aaron went first and decided he had to come at me. To that end a Lord of Skulls was Warptimed and crashed into my lines, killing quite a few Boyz. Magnus was also upfront with the Knight in the back and the other Lord mid-field. Fortunately I took an Ork build that deals with this handily and proceeded to melt the Lord with 7, d6 Mortal Wound Smites. I also took a few Wounds off Magnus with Shootas and a Charge, which made me happy.

I was able to jump out to an early lead thanks to all my models and Troops while Aaron couldn't get any Malestrom Points. Magnus Fell Back on Turn 2 but wasn't able to get the other Lord of Skulls up the field, he settled for dumping all shooting and a Charge from the Lord into a Boyz unit which wiped it out.

On my Turn I melted the other Lord thanks to some good healing from the Painboys and careful sequencing. I left it with 4 Wounds but finished it with a Charge from a unit, a Warboss, three Weirdboys and Grotsnik. Magnus went down a few more Wounds as well.

By Aaron's Turn 3 the writing was on the wall. I was up 4-0 on Maelstrom and had only lost about two units worth of Boyz. Magnus was square in my sights or he was giving up the Knight, who's honestly more useful against my army. We decided to call the game officially but play on for fun. On my Turn 3 I killed Magnus and then asked if we could stop the game as I thought the next Round was coming up soon (it wasn't). This gave me a score of 19-0 as I'd gotten First Blood, Linebreaker, and Slay the Warlord. Final Maelstrom Score was 4-0 and I had 3 Objectives to 1 for Eternal War when I could have grabbed the last one easily.

I don't think Aaron had a chance this game outside of me rolling complete ice. He has nowhere near the amount of attacks needed to kill my army and even with a +2 Magnus can't touch many of my Casting Rolls. Magnus also kind of just dies to Orks, especially if you block his +1 Invulnerable Save power, and he adds nothing to the army against me other than some buffs. I made sure not to damage the Lords because they get way too many attacks if you do, it was straight from full to death. My only focus was on the Scenario, I knew I couldn't be touched on it and any result except a 6 is easy for me to achieve.










Round 2

After a nice lunch with some of the locals I was up against Rob, someone I've known for awhile but never played in 40K, although we did used to run in the same Fantasy group. He was packing an all Primaris Ultramarines list, which is terrifying because Primaris Marines are amazing against Infantry and awful against armor. And then there's everyone's favorite broken Character to contend with.....

Guilliman w/ Adept of the Codex
Primaris Captain
Primaris Librarian w/ Psychic Scourge & Fury of the Ancients

10 Reivers w/ Bolt Rifles & Grav-Chutes
Redemptor Dreadnought w/ Onslaught Gatling Cannon, 2 Storm Bolters

5 Intercessors
5 Intercessors
8 Intercessors

Xiphon Interceptor

5 Hellblasters
Repulsor w/ Twin Lascannon, Las-Talon, Onslaught Gatling Cannon, 4 Fragstorm Grenade Launchers

*sigh* I honestly think Primaris armies are not good but damn if they aren't good against me. The issue with Primaris is they cannot handle armor without multiple Repulsors, Hellblasters die way too easily and there's no other options. In any case I think this is a really bad matchup and Rob had pretty close to the best list you can get to all Primaris. As we discussed later I think the Dreadnought can go and turn into Aggressors or something else, maybe even another Flier.

The Missions was The Scouring, which is very good for me since I project force a lot better and I'm generally faster as I can Advance at less penalty, also I have Da Jump. However it comes with Search and Destroy which is really bad against a shooting army, it's hard to unpack my army and I have to come at Rob in waves which is not the correct was to play a Combat army.

Rob won the roll to go first but I Seized the Initiative which was extremely helpful for letting me cover ground early on. Once against I got an early Maelstrom lead with holding the Objectives while Rob rolled poorly and was left with Destroy a Unit, which he can't, and hold an Objective he was nowhere close to. I also did a fairly good job of putting Objectives in spots which it would be very hard for Rob's army to get to but simple for me, as well as being in the open since his army wants Cover and I do not.

By Turn 2 it was clear I was going to struggle to do damage. All the Ultramarines were packed too densely, I couldn't get in with anything unless I used Da Jump and got a lucky Charge, that unit would then 100% die the next turn. All the anti-Infantry shooting with Guilliman was just brutalizing me although I did manage to Smite down the Dreadnought and beat up on the Interceptor. The Reivers came on in my backlines hoping to help finish a unit off but didn't manage to do so and then got Charged, eventually getting wiped out.

A crucial moment in the game was when I failed a 7" Charge on Turn 2, leaving my Warboss exposed for the Interceptor to pick off. That gave Rob Destroy a Unit was he also held Objective 1, I was hoping to be up 4-1 but instead was only up 4-2.

Turn 3 was the last turn, I was taking awhile as I was constantly moving onto Objectives and Rob was taking awhile just because of all his shots and re-rolls. At the end of my Turn 3 I held 3 Objectives to Rob's 2 and was up on Maelstrom which he couldn't come back on. I had Linebreaker and Big Game Hunter, Rob had no Tertiary Points.

On Rob's Turn 3 he made some incidental Charges but had crucially run out of Command Points from stuff like Orbital Bombardment (trying to kill the Weirdboys), Armor of Contempt, and just re-rolls. He only got one Command Point back the whole game and it came down to 4 Hellblasters needing to make a longish Charge onto a Nob and Boy holding an Objective. Unfortunately the Hellblasters didn't make it which would have almost certainly given Rob the Mission and me a Minor Victory. As it happened I got an 18 Point win and Rob got 0.

I played very badly toward the end here and got on tilt slightly. The Repulsor had been chewing me up so I tunnel-visioned on it when all I had to do was Da Jump a unit onto one of the far Objectives which Rob could in no way contest. With that I'd have had a free win but instead I threw Smites at it and did kill it. Because of that I almost threw away the win and Rob would certainly have given me a hard time if the game kept going. Essentially I had 3 Boyz units left, a Warboss, all the Psykers and Painboys but had only killed a Dreadnought, Repulsor, the Reivers, and 2-3 other Infantry.

Part of the reason I bungled the Deep Strike was I wasn't thinking about the time in the round, in the future I'm going to set alarms for 30 Minutes and so on. My focus was on dropping the shooting, weather the next turn, and then either killing Guilliman or messing up the Intercessors and hopefully grinding it out. It's certainly possible that would have worked but the game was what it was. I thoroughly enjoyed the match and I made plans to play Rob again sometime in the future.


















Round 3

While frantically packing up my stuff to get ready for the next game I found out I'd be playing Lars and his Grey Knights. Lars is a local to the store but I'd never played him before and I'd also never played Grey Knights before. My main worry was all the Stormbolters, however Grey Knights are super fragile so I could weather the storm I knew I could likely hit back even harder.

Lars had the better record by 1 Point, narrowly stopping me from having to play a Space Wolves list with a Thunderhawk, Logan Grimnar, and some other dumb crap. I wish I would have gotten the chance just to Smite that thing out of the air because I frankly stupid lists like that which have no place outside of Apocalypse. In any case...

Grand Master in Nemesis Dreadknight w/ Gatling Psilencer, Heavy Psycannon, Teleporter, Nemesis Greathammer (Warlord w/ First to the Fray)

Grand Master Voldus

5 Paladins w/ 4 Falchions and 1 Hammer
Apothecary
Venerable Dreadnought w/ Twin Lascannon and Missile Launcher
Venerable Dreadnought w/ Twin Lascannon and Missile Launcher

5 Strike Squad w/ Psycannon & 4 Falchions
5 Strike Squad w/ Psycannon & 4 Falchions
10 Strike Squad w/ 2 Psycannons & 8 Falchions

Stormraven w/ Twin Multi-Melta and 2 Hurricane Bolters


I think Lars has a great army, the only thing that seems out of place is the Strike Squads on foot. They seem to exist to fill up a Battalion and to let the other stuff Deep Strike but they're so fragile and unlikely to contribute much to the army. I don't recall if they had Gate of Infinity but if not they do need that.

Our Mission was No Mercy, which is amazing for me since most of my Characters are very hard to get to and Lars has a lot of Power Level in things like the Paladins that have to get close. We also get to play Vanguard Strike which is fine for me, I'll actually be able to spread out a little and get my army up the table.

I won the First Turn and Lars failed to Seize the Initiative, also very good for me since I want dominant Objective positioning and to eat one less turn of shooting. To that end I ran up but made sure to cover my rear against the Paladins, Dreadknight, and Voldus not the mention the Stormraven flying around. Grey Knights are insanely mobile when they want to be so it pays to circle the wagons.

On Turn 1 I killed 2 Strikes but failed a Charge from a Da Jump unit after re-rolling a 1 and needing a 4. On Lars' Turn the big Strike Squad disembarked and the Stormraven flew to my right and all the Deep Strike came in behind my army. Two of my units got brutalized, going below 10 models, as the Strike Squad Gate'd within Rapid Fire and also used Psybolt Ammunition. The Psychic Phase was also brutal but it seems like Lars was accidentally cheating, he used Psychic Channeling to get Vortex on me and almost killed several Characters, a Warboss did actually die, but he was keeping all three dice. While this still would have been a high result I could have at least tried to stop it.

Fortunately only the Paladins got into Combat on an 11, I tried to keep them out by removing casualties but they rolled well. My unit survived though and Lars also Charged the damaged Strike Squad into my Boyz, losing 2 to Overwatch and the Sergeant to Combat. This gave me First Strike and Destroy a Unit, which I would have not otherwise gotten, and was almost certainly a mistake. On my Turn I was able to get further up the board. This put a unit near the small Strike Squad and Dreadnoughts and two units, although one barely hanging on, near the big Strike Squad.

I was able to kill all the Paladins with Smite, securing some nice Kill Points, and put some Wounds on Voldus and the Dreadknight with shooting and some spare Smites. My shooting elsewhere was pretty great and Lars was rolling ice for Armor Saves, killing the small Strikes and leaving the big with only 5 or so models.

In Combat I got into Voldus and one Dreadnought, I was hoping to grab both but even with 'Ere We Go I only managed 4". I wiped out the Strikes and left Voldus on 3 Wounds, also doing 2 to the Dreadknight, while taking some incidental losses. At this point I was feeling good, I had a 2-0 Maelstrom lead and was going to go to 4-1, King of the Hill and First Strike were likely on lock and I was confident about Slay the Warlord too.

Lars Turn was a lot of trying to get back in the game. The Stormraven flew over to kill my Warlord who I couldn't really protect anymore and the Apothecary moved to try and finish what the Paladins started on a unit with 6 Boyz left. Voldus got Gate'd out and again did a Vortex (again with the incorrect working of the Psychic Channeling Strategem) and killed almost all my Weirdboys but died to a Perils. My Warlord got killed by the Stormraven and the Apothecary shot 2 Boyz to death but then left 2 alive in Combat. The Dreadknight was down to around 9 Wounds from Combat and some Smites. Also the other Venerable Dreadnought got into Combat after shooting some more Boyz just to try and clear his copy out but I had enough models to force them to grind.

My Turn 3 was trying to put the nail in the coffin. I got a Weirdboy and Big Mek closer to the Dreadnoughts for a Smite and to keep them locked up, respectively. What was left of my Characters moved to Smite the  Dreadknight and get stuck in, if possible. At this point we were getting short on time so I didn't both to move some of my units as they were somewhat out of the game.

Smites went into the Dreadknight but didn't do much as I only had a +2 bonus, I did get in with two and also Charged the Apothecary with Grotsnik and a Painboy. The Apothecary went down to Grotsnik's Powerklaw but I somewhat whiffed against the Knight who killed a Weirdboy was down to about 5 Wounds. I kept grinding into the Dreadknights with the Big Mek and Boyz, getting one down to 3 Wounds left.

Lars Turn 3 was the last turn. He couldn't come back on Maelstrom as I was up 4-1 and he was way down in Kill Points since all he'd really done was kill 4 of the Weirdboys. The Stormraven moved to be able to shoot Grotsnik and the other Painboy, as well as my two man unit. All of these went down after the Dreadknight couldn't get any relevant Psychic Powers off, although the Dreadnoughts Smite'd two models.

Combat left the Dreadknight on 1 Wound and cost me another Weirdboy, I also left a Dreadnought on 2 Wounds but only had two models left in the unit with them as well as the Big Mek. At that time got called, giving me an 18-1 win.











Post-Tournament Thoughts

I ended up placing 1st out of 14 Players, 2nd was the Thunderhawk guy and 3rd was my local Nick who I've played against many times on this very blog with his Nurgle. My Round 1 opponent, Aaron, got 4th, Lars got 6th or 7th, and Rob got 11th with a nasty loss to Aaron in Round 3.

All in all it was a good event and I think my list was put to the test. There weren't any truly cut throat armies there in terms of stupid Imperial Soup, or some of the janky stuff that Chaos can do now, but the lists were certainly good and I think we had a fairly strong field. I would have loved to see more players but the event was on a Sunday and not everyone is comfortable with a tournament setting.

I'm going to do a rather long (in all likelihood) video just detailing my thoughts by round, what I learned, and where I'm going from here so if you're interested in some analysis please check that out below.


Episode 44: It's Like Deja Vu All Over Again (Orks vs. Salamanders 2000 Points)

Twoooo games in twoooo days. Among my favorite phrases in all of Warhammer, and perhaps the world. This time I was playing against Jacob and his.....Salamanders. Which are all Primaris. Same as my last game. Hmmmmm.

I'm still preparing for my tournament on Sunday so that means Orks, Orks, and more Orks. I have no complaints about my current list even after throwing it into the teeth of some pretty good counters. I've been able to pull out the wins even in these situation which feels great. I still don't think Orks will be able to compete against the truly gross armies that you can make right now (all of which are Imperium) but that's a pretty good spot to be in for a Joe Schmoe Xenos Faction. I'm continuing to try to play fast which mostly involves Movement and the Psychic Phase. Weirdboys are a significant slow down factor because I constantly have to measure all the Orks in range of their ability. To this end I think I'm going to pick up a ring to use as a template, I probably dedicate nearly 10 Minutes per game just to measuring out all that crap.



Orks

Warboss w/ Big Choppa & Attack Squig
Warboss w/ Big Choppa & Attack Squig

Big Mek on Warbike w/ Slugga and Kustom Force-Field
Big Mek on Warbike w/ Slugga and Kustom Force-Field

Weirdboy
Weirdboy
Weirdboy
Weirdboy
Weirdboy
Weirdboy
Weirdboy

Mad Dok Grotsnik
Painboy w/ Grot Orderly

29 Shoota Boyz and Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa
29 Shoota Boyz and Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa
29 Shoota Boyz and Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa
29 Shoota Boyz and Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa
29 Shoota Boyz and Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa
29 Shoota Boyz w/ 1 Big Shoota and Nob w/ Shoota and Choppa



Salamanders (Space Marines)

Primaris Captain (Warlord w/ Iron Resolve)
Primaris Chaplain
Primaris Lieutenant
Primaris Lieutenant w/ Power Sword

Primaris Ancient w/ Standard of The Emperor Ascendant
5 Reivers w/ Grav-Chutes and Combat Knives
5 Reivers w/ Grav-Chutes and Combat Knives
Redemptor Dreadnought w/ 2 Storm Bolters

5 Intercessors
5 Intercessors
8 Intercessors

3 Inceptors

5 Hellblasters
5 Hellblasters
Repulsor w/ Twin Lascannon, Las-Talon, Onslaught Gatling Cannon, Icarus Rocket Pod



Scenario & Deployment
Big Guns Never Tire (ITC Variant) | Hammer & Anvil

Ugh. At least I have a shot at going first this time. Once again I'm playing with a long field and little room to Deep Strike although Jacob's list is much more well-rounded, which plays into what I'm bringing. We're also doing an ITC Mission which means I get Objective Secured and can apply pressure via Maelstrom Objectives.

As typical I deployed with four units of Boyz of upfront, then Characters, then units in the back. Jacob has a lot of Deep Strike to threaten my Weirdboys with so I need to be very careful about keeping them bubble-wrapped. Jacob mostly bunched up on the left although the Repulsor with the big Intercessor unit, Chaplain, and Lieutenant went on the right. I put my Weirdboys down last, allowing me to focus them on the left although one went right to Da Jump my Pink Boyz.

My priority was the Inceptors, which were in Deep Strike along with the Reivers, and the Dreadnought. Jacob also has a brutal combination of re-roll 1's to Hit, 1's to Wound, and the Banner which allows his guys to shoot/fight when they die on a 3+. This combines with the Auras and the Salamanders Chapter Tactic since it doesn't say once per Phase. I expect this to be a very common build with all kinds of fun things. Like Guilliman. Kill me now.

Fortunately I was able to win the roll to go first and Jacob failed to Seize the Initiative so I'll be able to get up the board and hopefully not get torn up too badly.








Orks Turn 1

Movement Phase
For Objectives I have Destroy a Unit and Hold Objective 1. Objective 1 is in my Deployment Zone so I'll easily have that and if I can get a Turn 1 Charge I'll likely kill a unit and also get First Strike as a tertiary score.

I Advance everything except for my Pink Boyz. With how Jacob positioned I can Deep Strike on the left, get some good shooting into the Intercessors, and if I make the Charge tie up quite a few units.

Overall I kept the same positioning, I don't want to start pulling away from the right just yet since it would allow the Repulsor and its cargo to run wild. My Purple Boyz spread out to cover the backfield against shenanigans.

Psychic & Shooting Phase
I debate putting Warpath on my Pink Boyz but decline, I'm unlikely to need the extra attacks to kill 5 Intercessors that I also shoot and I'm almost certain to Perils which puts me in a hole early. In hindsight I should have done so, because healing is done in the Movement Phase I can pick up both Weirdboys and I get much better odds at wiping out whatever I Charge.

Shooting claims two Intercessors between the Pink Boyz and some stray shots from the units that Advanced.

Charge, Fight, & Morale Phase
My Pink Boyz are able to make the Charge, only declaring the Intercessors. I lose 1 model from Overwatch but get 11" which allows me to Pile In on the Dreadnought, as well as the other Intercessor unit. The Captain Heroically Intervenes although the Lieutenant and Ancient decide to hide in the ruins.

Combat wipes out the Intercessors, giving me my Maelstrom Objective and Fist Strike. I lose a few models to the Captain but since he doesn't have any Strength buffs he's not doing too much in Combat. The Dreadnought also claims 4 Boyz and the other Intercessors claim a few more.

This leaves me with 14 Boyz and I use 2 Command Points to make them immune to Morale. They certainly wouldn't all have ran but I want as many models in Jacob's face as possible early game so it was worth the cost to me.







Salamanders Turn 1

Movement Phase
Jacob rolls Destroy a Unit and have three units in his Deployment Zone with none of mine.

To that end the Dreadnought Falls Back from Combat, hoping to shoot again later. The Repulsor floats out from behind the ruins but is still hanging back. Finally the Inceptors drop in behind my lines while the Reivers decide to delay their arrival.

Psychic & Shooting Phase
My Purple Boyz get ripped into by the Inceptors, kill 7. Most of the remaining army is in single shot range, or out completely, only inflicting a few losses from the Hellblasters and Repulsor. Overall this was very few losses so I'm in good shape heading into Turn 2.

Charge, Fight, & Morale Phase
Nothing Charges to reinforce the Captain and Intercessors and Jacob begins with the former, only killing a few. I drop another Intercessor and then lose another few models in return. This leaves me without having to contend with Morale, nearly guaranteeing I'll deny Jacob his Maelstrom Point.







Orks Turn 2

Movement Phase
I score both my Maelstrom Objectives for a good start to the game and I have a commanding position on the Relic although I'm not going to pick it up until later. This time I roll Destroy a Unit and hold Objective 1 again, so far excellent rolls.

Again all my units Advance except the Purple Boyz who backpedal to handle the Inceptors in case I can't Smite them off the board. I'm still holding strong on the right until the Repulsor is empty as I don't want to get flanked or have units behind me. I manage to heal the damage taken from Da Jump last turn.

Psychic & Shooting Phase
Three Smites go onto the Inceptors, removing them all for a few Wounds on various Weirdboys. Unfortunately I'm just out of range from the other units so my offense is still being bottled up.

Shooting puts a Wound on a Hellblaster but I have no other real targets with the ongoing Combat and everything else being a bit back.

Charge, Fight, & Morale Phase
I try some long Charges into the Captain but fail both of them, needing an 11 or so on both.

In Combat I drop another Intercessor and lose 8 Boyz, forcing me to use another 2 Command Points to stay in Jacob's Deployment Zone and get a Maelstrom lead. This certainly puts a dent in my Command Points but I think it's worth it since Maelstrom can be hard to catch up on, especially with the options Jacob has.










Salamanders Turn 2

Movement Phase
Jacob scores 0 Points as he failed to wipe out any of my units and couldn't keep my out of his Deployment Zone, not a bad reward for 4 Command Points. He rolls Destroy a Unit and hold Objective 2 which is in the ruins Jacob has under control.

Everyone jumps out of the Repulsor which then flies over to the right and the cargo goes left. Nothing else moves but one of the Reiver units comes down on my left flank, closest to a Weirdboy.

Psychic & Shooting Phase
Shooting primarily goes into the Blue and Red Boyz as they're the closest threat, removing about a third of each unit. The Reivers put 2 Wounds on my Weirdboy and Pistols kill a few Pink Boyz. Again I didn't take much damage although I'm not doing much in return so the game is in a weird spot.

Charge, Fight, & Morale Phase
The Reivers fail their Charge into the Weirdboy, sparing him for the coming turns.

Combat kills the remaining Pink Boyz although I do claim another Intercessor and do a Wound. My unit was able to kill 8 Intercessors, tie up some shooting, deny 2 Maelstrom Objectives, and stop the Dreadnought from shooting for a turn. Not bad.







Orks Turn 3

Movement Phase
Once again I completed both my Maelstrom Objectives which gives me a nice lead, although Jacob will also score two on his upcoming turn. This time I rolled Destroy a Unit and control Objective 1, which should be simple to do.

I really need to get into Combat this turn so everyone runs up again, the Green Boyz form a circle around the back of my army since there's still a Reiver unit in Reserves. Again I intentionally leave the Relic alone, I'd prefer to see all the Reivers come down first and then grab it with a Warboss and get out of dodge.

Psychic & Shooting Phase
Smites kill the last 2 Intercessors from the smaller unit and also 3 Reivers, I'm still out of range to Jacob's bunker but I am chipping away.

Shooting kills 3 Intercessors from the large unit on some awesome dice rolls, hitting on 6's isn't so bad when you have 100+ shots.

Charge, Fight, & Morale Phase
My Purple Boyz, a Warboss, and two Weirdboys Charge the Reivers, I definitely want them done to secure my Objectives. All the Blues get into the Captain and both the Red Boyz and 'Ard Boyz combo into the Intercessors and friends.

All in all I do 5 Wounds to the Captain, kill an Intercessor, and finish off the Reivers to get Destroy a Unit. I lose 12 Red Boyz back as the Characters take a heavy tole, 3 Blues also bite the dust. I wasn't quite able to get the 'Ard Boyz in where I needed but they're in Combat now and after Consolidating they're in position for next turn. My 'Ard Boyz also grab the Dreadnought in Combat with a Pile In so no more shooting from that monstrosity.

Sadly I wasn't able to get my Purples back onto Objective 1 so I surrender that. I should have daisy-chained them onto the Objective as they didn't even swing, the Warboss killed the Reivers by himself. It's very important I don't surrender the Maelstrom lead since I'm practicing for a timed environment so this was a pretty dumb mistake.













Salamanders Turn 3

Movement Phase
Jacob got both of his Objectives for a score of 4-2 in my favor. Jacob rolls hold Objective 2, which is in the ruins, and Destroy a Unit. These are pretty likely with the ongoing Combats so I really have to make sure I score both of mine at the next opportunity.

With most things locked up the Repulsor moves to Charge the 'Ard Boyz, the Reivers also come down with an eye on the left flank Big Mek.

Psychic & Shooting Phase
My Big Mek takes some Pistol shots, ending up with 3 Wounds done. I lose a few other models from the Hellblasters and Repulsor but mostly all my units in range are either in Combat or are Characters. At this point the game is getting pretty grindy so shooting is definitely not going as far as it could.

Charge, Fight, & Morale Phase
The Repulsor Charges the 'Ard Boyz but the remaining army holds tight to avoid Smites and incidental Ork fists. I take no damage from the Repulsor but use 2 Command Points to Counter-Attack with the Blue Boyz. This finishes off the Captain, netting me Slay the Warlord and getting rid of a powerful Aura.

Jacob goes to the Dreadnought, killing 4 'Ard Boyz who then manage to deal 3 Wounds to the Intercessors. I then get punched back pretty hard which kills all the Red Boyz.






Orks Turn 4

Movement Phase
Having only scored one Objective last turn I'm up to 5-2, about to be 5-4. I roll two Destroy a Unit results which should be simple with the Reivers and damaged Intercessors.

I position a Weirdboy, Warboss, and Painboy to Charge the Repulsor, if I can get it down a profile I should be able to limit its output for the rest of the game. The Green Boyz also move towards it. My Purple Boyz and remaining uncommitted elements Advance towards the Reivers, as does my leftmost Big Mek.

Psychic & Shooting Phase
As always the Smites rain down, killing 3 Hellblasters, the last Intercessors, a Wound on the Repulsor, and claiming 2 of the Reivers.

Shooting does a Wound to the Hellblasters and kills another 2 Reivers.

Charge, Fight, & Morale Phase
The Warboss and Big Mek Charge the Reiver Sergeant while the other Big Mek crashes into the Lieutenant and Chaplain. All the Characters on the right Charge the Repulsor, I decline a Charge with the Green Boyz just to save time and they're unlikely to do more than a Wound. Ideally I would make that Charge but I'm practicing for a time sensitive environment so wasting time positioning all those guys for no real payoff would be a bad decision. Finally the Blue Boyz Charge both Hellblast units, losing 2 models.

I kill off the last Reiver, netting me my other Maelstrom Objective, I also drag down a Hellblaster and the Chaplain. 2 Wounds go on the Dreadnought and I bring the Repulsor down to 5 Wounds. In return all of my Blue Boyz die save the Nob and a lot more 'Ard Boyz go down. Sadly the Big Mek also gets smashed. I use my last 2 Command Points (having used some re-rolls during the game) to keep the Nob around as he's tying up a whole Hellblaster unit.











Remaining Turns

Jacob takes his turn, Falling Back with the Repulsor. My Nob dies to Pistols and the Repulsor kills some more Gren Boyz. Combat has a few more 'Ard Boyz go down and I drop the Dreadnought to 7 Wounds. At this point Jacob concedes the game, I'm likely to finish the Hellblasters with Smites and get some models into the Lieutenant and Ancient in the ruins. The Repulsor is on its last legs and likely to go down from some Character Charges, and of course I can grab the Relic with the Green or Purple Boyz.


Major Victory for the Orks!


Post-Game Thoughts

Once again I don't have a ton to blab about regarding this game. That might not be surprising since it's very similar to the last game I played. I do feel Jacob's list is much stronger and more optimized that the last Salamanders one I ran into, the Ancient is just so insane with that Banner and Salamanders push it even further. Without it Jacob kills quite a few less models, at least 20.

Regarding lists I think the Captain certainly needs to either be fightier via another Relic or upgraded to a Chapter Master, depending on the game. The list could also use more anti-tank, there's really only the Repulsor and the Dreadnought in Combat. Hellblasters are alright against vehicles but they're fragile. I mean Primaris armies don't have many options against vehicles outside of taking Predators, Dreadnoughts, stuff like that so it sort of is what it is.

I continue to be unimpressed by Reivers, they don't have a strong role. They aren't great in Combat, they're just Marines with Chainswords and +1 Attack. Leadership plays no role in the game right now in most situations, the most popular units/Factions are pretty much immune to it. Their Grenades are great in a Combat army, although I'd probably just want to take more guys. They're fairly cheap but unless an opponent has some undefended shooting units they have no solid targets. And in that case you can simply take a minimum Assault Squad or something like that.

Once again the game itself was pretty straight-forward, I did have a major blunder where I didn't hold the Maelstrom Objective on my side of the board. My positioning was good and I got a lot of healing done with the Painboys who continue to show their worth. Running a ton of Smites has certainly shown its weaknesses, which I knew about. This typically happens when there's a few extremely effective units that I cannot shoot, hiding behind units that I also cannot shoot. I also think I need to get more active with Warpath and Da Jump, typically I've been doing them Turn 1 and then kind of abandoning them.

In this game I wanted to make sure that I could protect my Characters which may not have been necessary. Bolt Pistols do about half a Wound on average to a Weirdboy under a KFF and I wasn't able to block all the Charge angles so might as well risk that. Hammer & Anvil makes it tough because there's not enough room and one of the benefits is the distraction of being at multiple angles.

Overall I'm happy with the armies performance and it's been a lot of fun to play. I've had some tough games in terms of composition and/or Scenario but continue to come out with the wins. I still have lots of small things to improve at as I illustrate every game but that's part of the fun of playing.

I will do my best to do some Battle Reports for the tournament this week but the rounds are short so there may be a lot of end of turn pictures. I have to start out playing one of the toughest entrants as I'm undefeated in the League and similar scores go against each other. We'll see how it goes.