Thursday, March 10, 2011

1250pt Last Man Standing

The local shop is running their 40k lock-in event next week and I'm looking for some reader advice and thoughts.  Here's the format:

We will be running a a modified "Last Man Standing" event. Tables will be much larger with groups of 4 to 6 players trying to win their respective tables. Losing teams will be knocked down to different tables to try to fight for the right be resurrected back to the final table.

Player's will get points for killing HQ's and having their own troops survive each table.

There will be a series of games played throughout the night and into the early morning.
Prize categories will be paid out for

Top 2 players
Best painted HQ
Head Hunter “most HQ’s killed”
Best Painted Army
Best Opponent
Best Army List
Best Table

If you can bring a table of terrain you will be entered into the best table contest as well.

-Armies will be no more than 1250 pts, following standard force org. rules.

-Games will be played on a table that is formed by a 4' x 4' table, with an extra 1' x 4' space added to each edge. (Think red cross symbol)

-4 players will play on each table at a time, rounds will be 5 turns long.

-Before each turn, order of play will be randomly decided by drawing cards for playing first, second, etc.


Kill Points:

-In order to gain points for killing enemy units, the unit must be destroyed entirely. This means that only the player to kill the last model of an enemy unit will be rewarded the points, regardless of whoever else may have done damage to the unit.
-Units that fall back and are removed from play by running off of the board edge WILL NOT REWARD POINTS.
-Points for killing a unit are awarded as follows: Units killed that belong to either played to the side of you will be worth 2 kill points. Units from the player on the opposite side of the table from you will be worth 3 kill points.
-In addition, players should keep track of how many enemy HQs they kill over the course of all of their games (for head hunters prize at the end of the night).

Last Man Standing:

-Players will be rewarded a point for each unit they have surviving at the end of each game.

King of the Hill:

-Each table will have an objective in the center of the board. This objective can be claimed or contested by ANY unit, EXCEPT for dedicated transports that are not transporting a unit.
-The objective will be worth 4 points.
-Points for this objective will be scored on EVERY player turn, starting on turn 2.

-Each player will deploy in one of the 1'x 4' 'tabs', staying at least 6" away from each side edge.
-Players MUST deploy AT LEAST 700 points worth of their army BEFORE the start of turn 1. Players using Codex: Daemons are exempt to this rule.
-Outflanking units will be deployed as follows: On a roll of 5-6, the unit enters play from an edge touching any inside corner of the board they choose. On a roll of 1-4, the unit will enter play from a board edge touching one of the corresponding inside corners, declared before rolling.

So here's my take:

One objective yeilds a possible of 16 points per turn if you can hold it uncontested (4 per player turn).  However, 4 players per table could make this nearly impossible.  KP's are the fallback scoring method, with the most for crossing the field to assassinate the player opposite.  Killing HQ's is a plus.

What this means is I need resilient units to prevent everyone ganging up on my units for easy KP's.  Speed is a plus to try and get the objective early and/or go for one of my 3 opponents.  Units holding the center will need to have serious CC prowess as turns 2-3 till the end will be big hairballs in the middle all all players pile in for KP's and HQ heads.

Here are some tactics and lists I've dreamed up:

#1 - Aggressive, hold the center.   The idea here is to take the center fast and hard and hold on to my ass and the objective.  Big units of genestealers infiltrate onto the objective by denying other infiltrators with spore mines.  Parasite and gargoyles fly up as a second wave and spawn rippers, further contesting or holding the objective.

Parasite of Mortrex
Genestealers x20 + toxins
Genestealers x18
Hive Guard x2
Hive Guard x2
Hive Guard x2
Spore mines x3
Gargoyles x20 + toxins/adrenals

Overall very strong in CC, but fragile to shooting without FnP.  Cover should be NP considering the store's history of filling tables nicely.  My main fear here is taking the center so aggressively will cause my 3 opponents to focus fire my units first.  My HQ is vulnerable to ID via str8+ in CC, and also spawns fairly fragile ripper units.  It could also do funny things if my 3 opponents bring a lot of outflankers.

#2 - Passive Shooty.  This list holds back and shoots.  This should be more resilient as in this format, CC units now have to survive 3 shooting phases if they get out of combat.  It has very little chance of taking the center and relies mostly on raking in KP's.

Tyrant + shell, devourers x2
Prime + LW/BS, regen
Hive Guard x2
Hive Guard x2
Rippers x3
Rippers x3
Tyrannofex + cannon
Carnifex + devourers x2
Carnifex + devourers x2

Prime joins one fex to make a fexstar and cover the other fex.  Tfex and tyrant have 2+ armor and cover hive guard.  It has 26 t6 wounds with 2 str10 shots, 8 str8 shots, and 36 twin linked str6 shots.  Not bad for 1250 and I should be able to mop up easy KP's that my opponents are softening up for me.  I basically sit 18" from the center objective and torrent away the other 3 armies as they fight over the objective.  My main problem is not much in the CC department if some smartass rushes me with terminators or a deathstar.

#3 - Hybrid w/ Deathstar.  It's designed to put pressure on the middle until the slow deathstar arrives in the middle and rolls over everything.

Tyrant + shell, OA, regen
Tyrant Guard x3 + whips
Prime + boneswords, toxins, regen, adrenals
Genestealers x20 + toxins, broodlord, scytal, implant attack
Tervigon + toxins, adrenals, catalyst, claws
Termagants x10

Genestealers try to hold the center until the deathstar runs in.  Broodlord has poison and implant attack to assassinate HQ's.  They get FnP until the deathstar is in position to charge in.  Tervigon also has crushing claws and spawns gants to further take advantage of old adversary bubble.  It has no shooting and relies on rends and MC's to flip vehicles that come to the middle.  Obvious weakness against opponents that sit back and shoot.  Best list for assassinating HQ's and dominating the middle.

#4 - Target Denial.  This list starts only MC's with 2+ armor on the board and reserves the rest to pounce later.  It features extremely long range shooting and dormant units capable of targetting the opposite side opponent for maximum KP's.

Tyrant + shell, HC, HVC, regen
Ymgarls x8
Ymgarls x8
Rippers x3
Rippers x3
Tfex + cannon
Tfex + cannon

Tfexes deploy with the tyrant for all t6 with 2+/cover.  All three can shoot 36"+.  With 3 opponents, Ymgarls will have something to assault no matter where they pop up.  They land passive assaults to maximize the time they're locked and shot less.  MC's can take the middle in the late game with all the tyranno templates.

*NEW* List #5 - Deathstar/shooty Hybrid.  Some of the strong elements from list #3 with more ranged diversity.

Tyrant + shell, OA, devourers x2, regen
Tyrant Guard x3 + whips
Tyranid Prime + boneswords
Hive Guard x2
Genestealers x20
Rippers x3
Tyrannofex + cannon

So the CC punch of 20 genestealers and full deathstar, with ranged support of str6, str8, and str10 shooting.  Rippers are the only easy killpoint , but I can reserve them.

*NEW* List #6 - Big Fexstar.  Similar to my DaBoyz GT list, it has 2 fexes and 2 primes in one big unit of doom.

Tyranid Prime + lw/bs, regen
Tyranid Prime + bs/bs, ts, regen
Hive Guard x2
Hive Guard x2
Hive Guard x2
Rippers x3
Rippers x3
Carnifex x2 + devourers x2
Tyrannofex + cannon

So both primes join the fex brood and grant the unit cover .  This unit puts out 24 str6 shots and also doubles as my assault unit.  Lots of str8 shooting and the tfex bangin away.  Not a fast list, but hard to stop.  I could plow my way across the table.
So those are my 6 concepts and tactics.  I have all the models for these so I'd like feedback from all of you as to which version you think will work best in the format and why.  I will use the most popular list and batrep the results as a follow-up to tactical theory versus execution in this tournament.


  1. How do you feel about Doom or Mawlocs?

    I'm thinking that the center of the boards will be big pits of close combat. Sounds like a party to me.

    I'm gonna try and make the event. I have a science fair to judge that day, and my wife may or may not be back from PA that morning.

  2. Doom and mawlocs would be fun, but I don't think they'll be effective in the long run. Doom and spore will be fairly easy killpoints and annoying enough that all 3 opponents will target them.

    Give that each game will be set at 5 turns, mawlocs can only pop twice if they even survive. Considering 4 people will be vying for the middle and mawlocs aren't great in CC, I think they'll be a one shot weapon.

    Hope to see you there, Chris.

  3. This scenario almost begs for Deathleaper and Mawloc(s) - guaranteed furball in the center for kool-aid man to disrupt and perhaps critically: displace vehicle walls/enemy models off the objective for mid-game points scoring - if he can net you 4+ points per game it might be worth it. DL is a bonafide executioner you can move anywhere on the battlefield...

    Love list #3; but no matter how brutal the 'nids list, you're looking at multi-ss/th termies brawling in the center; probably with drop pods and LRs to get there.

    I like the idea of tweaking your shooty list to include biovores to slow movement and really pound the snot out of the center too.

  4. The problem is I don't have any mawlocs and only 1 biovore.

    I've been playing with the deployment and one thing is immediately apparent: things are going to be tight. Even deploying kitty corner to an opponent, you could easily be in first turn assault range if either neighbor deploys off center.

    If people deploy centrally in their deployment tab, first turn assault will be out and it turns into a shootout.

    I'm actually thinking a list with blasts like Stranglethorn Cannons would be interesting, able to tag people in their own deployment or peg models from multiple owners in the middle. Even Acid Spray from a Tfex could be funny.

    I can avoid CC if I avoid the middle. I think. I don't think someone will send a LR full of hammernators truckin towards me if I deploy in my center and make no move for the middle right away.

    The more I stand here and look at my table set up, the more I think shooting is the way to go. I just need enough CC ability to discourage termies or TWC from rushing me.

    Back to the drawing board for a bit. Maybe I'll add a couple lists.

  5. I like the difference in speed in list #3 with the genestealers hitting turn two and the death-star arriving the next turn this list doesn't have allot of easy KP's (FNP on gaunts will make them difficult to kill in the first rounds) Which should draw some of the table's fire away from you and to your opponents.

    On the down side I can just imagine the amount of las cannon shots you will be taking as the death-star nears the middle. In a game of 1250 I fear genestealers wont be able to get enough KPs to make the death-star viable. By this I mean if the genestealers die too early you have a slow death-star as the only way to get points, and until it reaches the center anything will just sit back and shoot.

    List #4 is more to my play style, although I can't help but feel the Ymgarl stealers are misplaced. They have no synergy with the rest of the army, acting like commandos trying to get a quick KP. I think a pair of TL HVC Harpies might do better although it would significantly change your strategy.

    Deploying on one side (preferable after that side-opponent has deployed) you can set up a denied flank while still having the range to hit your opposite fielded opponent turn 2. The increased templates give you a good chance of sniping a HQ or popping dedicated transports open turn 1. Adding some counter assault would make your MCs less appealing to assault.

    Just my thoughts. If you want to peg me on a vote its #3 unless you reconsider #4.

  6. I added two more lists. A modified #3 which seems to be the most popular, and a modified list #2 which was my favorite.

    One week left to decide...

  7. I like the shooting capability of list #6. The fex star, with two sets of regen, will break open land raiders in combat. This should allow the rippers to live despite the relative ease of killing. This list will roll over anything in 24" not to mention once the devourers are in range.

    I feel the tyrannofex is kind of silly (as it doesn't benefit the fex-star) but necessary without any fast moving anti-tank units.

    Overall my favorite list thats been posted as it doesn't suffer from the disjoint present in the star/stealer combination.

  8. Ok here's a final draft. I know it's not optimized, but it will be fully painted and the only list so far that I can finish by Saturday. I'm probably giving up some effectiveness, but most the guys around here are hobbyists before competitors.

    Tyranid Prime + regen, toxins, scytals, whip/sword
    Tyranid Prime + regen, toxins, rending, boneswords
    Hive Guard x2
    Hive Guard x2
    Rippers x3
    Genestealers x10
    Carnifex x2 + devourers x2, frag spines
    Tyrannofex + rupture cannon

    So I dropped some unpainted rippers and added in genestealers which I've been painting this week. The genestealers also give me a way to get into deployment zones and tag predators, devestators, and broadsides.

    I think this is the one I'm going to run with. I just need to finish up some painting and bases.

  9. Gah... A glaring weakness hit me while I was in the shower. Drop Jaws.

    With 3 opponents per player and one objective in the middle, I think drop pods will be popular. All it takes is one SW player to bring JoTWW (they will in a KP game) and I lose half my army.

    Back to the drawing board again. Looks like I'll have to go with the Tyrant deathstar and/or the genestealer/gargoyle lists to avoid getting knocked out of the tournament by a single model.

  10. Tyrant + scytals x2, toxins, shell, OA, regen, implant attack
    Tyrant Guard x3 + whips
    Tyranid Prime + boneswords, toxins, regen
    Hive Guard x2
    Genestealers x19
    Rippers x3
    Tyrannofex + cannon

    I know you won't like my deathstar but here's my thought process. Tyrant has dual scytals and PE to reroll all misses no matter what the target. He has toxins to reroll wounds against just about everything. He has implant attack so those 6's with toxin rerolls cause instant death. This is important against units like TWC, Nobs, and the HQ's which are an objective. The Prime can also ID those models.

    The genestealers run just ahead of the unit and soften up the middle. Str8 and str10 shooting for flavor.

    No real fear of JoTWW or TWC. Has decent anti-horde and anti-armor in CC and shooting. Rippers and hive guard are my easiest KP's, but go ahead and ignore the rest of my army to kill them...

  11. I like the Tyrannofex replacing the gene /termagaunt spam of list #3. This will give your opponent some more difficult choices in the early rounds, and increases the threat range of your list.