Wednesday, December 25, 2013

2,000 Point Tournament Lessons Learned

Merry Christmas!

As a really lame present, I'll tell you all the lessons I learned in my last tournament. Maybe they'll do you some good. These games gave me a bunch more experience with the new Space Marines, and I certainly learned a few things. I got to play against some pretty diverse opponents.

1) Amra (aka Lysander) is great, but he isn't able to take on real assault units by himself. In two games, I was defeated by assault forces after Amra was killed (despite reaping a pretty ferocious tally each time). I think Amra really needs some Assault Terminators to back him up. Sgt. Druss and the Legends will be finding their way back into my list.

2) I really liked my anti-infantry Tactical squads. I didn't put them into any stupidly dangerous positions to try and take out enemy hard targets. They put out great firepower against infantry, and I felt like I got a lot of benefit from Bolter Drill as I was always shooting targets that were vulnerable to bolters. The three shots with the heavy bolter and the flamer put out reliable damage with overwatch too, which was very handy.

3) Tank Hunting Devastators are amazing! They destroyed just about every vehicle they targeted within a round of shooting. When they man the quadgun, no enemy flyers were able to approach my army. I did feel like the tri-las Predators were great at their newly reduced point cost, but they were totally outdone by the Devastators.

4) I didn't run into any armies with more than two flyers, but the Dakkajet and the Heldrake are still pretty formidable. Even so, I had air superiority in all of my games. No enemy flyer lasted a full turn against my army, and I never lost any of my flyers, which was great. Even so, they weren't able to do enough damage to win me games. Air superiority is great, but I need to use my forces on the ground better.

5) The Thunderfire cannon is still great, but it's use has kind of changed since it became Barrage. First, don't be fooled into thinking you can fire it without line of sight. It becomes super inaccurate then, so set it up where you can see your targets. Always aim for important models in enemy squads, as you can pick them out and kill them first if you score a direct hit. Finally, the cannon benefits massively from Prescience as Barrage weapons are much more unreliable than multiple standard blasts.

6) I'm not sure what to think of the Inquisitor. He doesn't add much personally, but his Divination power is pretty useful. He can only take one power, which is a bit of a bummer, but it will help your firepower. His servo-skulls didn't do much as none of my opponents had any Infiltrators  or Scouts, but they're cheap enough that they're worth taking just in case. They were a great help to my Thunderfire; combined with Prescience, it was scoring massive amounts of hits. I never ended up using the Liber Heresius though. I always deployed him with my Devastators, so they never needed to Scout. I thought Split Fire would be useful, but I never needed to divide my fire. It was cheap, so I don't really mind. Split Fire certainly seems like it should be great with multiple lascannons. I just didn't see the times when I should use it.

7) This is a personal lesson, but I really need to remember to cast blessings and maledictions at the beginning of my turn. I missed out on so many of these because I am not used to using psykers.


  1. Merry belated Christmas!

    Glad to see some more Executioners action! It looks like your army performed better in this tournament than the last, and you seemed to enjoy yourself more, so keep at it! Tinker with your list until you find something that works well for your playstyle and gives you a good balance.

    It looks like you're using the IF tactics from the SM Codex; have you considered using the Sentinels of Terra rules? You would still have access to Lysander, and Tank Hunters, but you would exchange the standard Bolter Drill for Lysander's version which lets you re-roll all misses at half-range with bolter weapons. That sounds like it would be a great way to represent the Executioners' fondness for short-ranged firefights.

    I'm also curious if you've ever tried running your Executioners using Space Wolves rules. I remember you once blogged about which rules could best be used for the Laughing Axemen on the tabletop, and you mentioned the Space Wolves as a strong possibility. When I think of "specializing in short-ranged firefights and close combat", the Space Wolf codex is always the first thing that comes to mind. Do you have any experience running them with those rules and, if so, what were your impressions?

    Returning to your current list, what changes do you see yourself making to include Sergeant Druss and his Legends (Would be nice to see them on the table, their fluff is great)? Do you intend on keeping Lysander and his retinue as a counter-assault force?

    Your blog is a pleasure to read. There's never enough attention given to the Executioners.

    - Darrell

  2. Thanks for the in-depth reply, Darrell! I'm always excited to get thoughtful feedback.

    I do think I'm slowly getting better with standard Space Marines, and it is making tournaments more enjoyable. I have thought about Sentinels of Terra, as I never seem to use my bolters at long range. Most of the time the Tactical Marines are jumping out of their Rhinos at close range, so the SoT re-rolls would be great. The main reason I haven't tried it is because I haven't bought the supplement. I'll look into it.

    I haven't tried using Space Wolves for the Executioners, but I have a lot of experience playing with and against the Wolves. They would be an excellent representation of the Executioners, and I might try it in the future. The main reason I stick with the standard Space Marines is all the toys they have. With the other marine codices, I would lose at least some of my Sternguard, Thunderfire, Stormtalon, or Stormraven. I know I could ally them in to a SW primary, but I think it would be confusing to have units from two codices in the same paint scheme. I have been considering adding an allied detachment of Space Wolves, painted as Space Wolves, as they are supposed to get along with the Executioners so well.

    It'll be easier to put Druss and his Legends into the list than it looks, since even though I have to drop 150 points to fit in my normal 1,850 point games, I also have to drop 3 Heavy Support options to fit into a standard FOC. I'll post up some new lists that I'm thinking of soon.

    Thanks for the compliment! As long as you like reading about my armies, I'll keep writing, and the Executioners are currently my favorite.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...