So I played in ANUCon on the weekend, as usual doing pretty badly. I would have been somewhere near the bottom for generalship, and somewhere much further up for sports and painting. It was a good weekend though: a much friendlier vibe than Cancon earlier in the year. Not that Cancon was unfriendly, but there were definitely opponents who were clearly more worried about winning than about making the game fun for both of us. That was not the case here. Plus, drinks were provided all weekend and lunch on both days, so I recommend it if you’re near Canberra and want a friendly tournament.
Well, the good news is I actually managed to hit with my rough riders in four out of the six games. The bad news is that in the fifth game their lances got snagged in my hoodie and one of them smashed to bits. My sgt also lost his arm in the accident, and I never managed to find it. These are Forge World Death Riders, about fifteen hours of painting and the pride of my army. And spindly, annoying, fragile little bastards.
Anyway. How was it in more detail?
My first game was against a jetbike heavy Eldar force. My opponent seemed like he knew what he was doing with them. It was an objectives game with Dawn of War deployment. I lost by one objective – it was very close. We chatted about my Iybraesil Eldar afterwards. He suggested if I’m going to use a wraithlord I may as well have two and an avatar, and go old-school Elfzilla. At first I thought nah, but I have to admit this idea is starting to intrigue me.
The second game was another objective match against Nurgle daemons. I’d never played against Deamons, ever. Two Great Unclean Ones, two Daemon Princes, three plaguebearer squads, a horde of nurglings and some beast of nurgle zapped down on the table. This guy was a really good player. He basically took me apart without apparently trying. He was fun to play against with a nicely painted, well-displayed army. All around a tournament star. My company commander stabbed one of his greater daemons to death with his S3 power sword and then single-handedly fenced with a daemon prince for three turns before finally going down. I didn’t feel too bad about losing horribly, as I looked up my opponent on Rankings HQ afterwards (I had a feeling he’d be there), and it turns out he’s ranked 10th in the Australian tourney scene. I’m currently ranked at 998th. . .
The third game was a team battle, with my last opponent and I versus marines and orks. I took on the orks and managed to bounce them off my line with minimal losses. Nurgle and the marines fought to a bloody impasse, but Nurgle was playing with only 600 of his 1000 points as he lost a heap of them to deepstrike mishaps. This game I did really well, and of course, it was the only game that didn’t count for battle points at all and was purely for fun. This leads me to the conclusion that since I always play as if winning doesn’t matter, in a game where winning actually doesn’t matter I have the advantage. The useless, unrewarding advantage!
The fourth game was against another Eldar jetbike player, who’s army was almost the same as the first guy I played but less friendly for me (i.e. three scatter-laser armed war walkers instead of fire prisms). It was another objective game, with night fight again. So yeah, flashbacks to the first game. Night fight really killed me though. I smashed a huge unit of jetbikes with my platoon’s lasfire, then we realized I’d forgotten to roll for distance (I never play Dawn of War against my regular opponents as it is stupid and annoying for everyone involved). So I rolled, needing anything but snake eyes, and . . . you know the rest. All those jetbikes back on the table, my platoon gets shot up, blah blah blah. I have to say though luck aside, I played pretty well. No obvious mistakes I can think of and I definitely had him worried. He won, but only because his Farseer made a last minute invulnerable save against my lascannon. If he’d rolled less than a four it would have been a draw.
The fifth game was the most enjoyable for me. It was against a Tau player and we had a very similar attitude. He had terrible luck and things were looking pretty bad for him but at the last minute he managed to draw by just running for the objectives with his surviving Fire Warriors (yes, it was another objectives game). Chilled out opponent, good game.
The last game of the tournament for me was finally an Annihilation battle. “Right”, I thought, “no pesky objectives now, let’s just smash them.” My opponent rocked up and he was a Chaos player with terminators, a defiler, and two land raiders full of berserkers. And the secondary objective was to get as many of your units as you could into the enemy deployment zone. I played pretty well, got some lucky shots, and it was looking good. I ended up drawing though, after I killed three out of his seven units and he killed three out of my eleven. Plus, he won the secondary objective because he had one surviving terminator in my zone at the end – with two leman russes and a squad of plasma-wielding veterans pointed at him. One more turn and I would have had a legitimate victory I reckon.
So, two draws, three losses, and a win that didn’t count! In my defence, the missions were very heavily skewed towards objectives, I kept getting matched up against Eldar jet-bikes, and two night fights in six games is two too many for my liking. Oh well, I don’t pretend to play 40k for the wins so I can’t expect much.
It was a fun weekend, but pretty tiring. If I go in any more tournaments I think I’ll go all out on display tables, painting, etc and see if I can win a best army or painting award. I’ll just suck up the actual games as something that has to be done, like a competitive player putting three colours and a base on his army. Or maybe I’ll get my arse into gear and paint my Yu Jing for Infinity in time for Cancon in January.
Oh, and thanks to Luke for organizing, and the ANU Wargaming Society for providing a fun, friendly event.