Hey everyone and welcome to another issue of the Dispatch!
Well, things went slightly off track with the last issue of the Dispatch so unfortunately the planned Battle Report is not quite finished. I was taking pictures at the end of each turn and apparently missed a couple of shots so it became slightly disjointed. Falling off of a chair, into two other chairs, while twisting your ankle and doing something not quite right to your knee can do that. Mental note: Bring a step stool next time... The good news is that the bruises are just about gone. Still, I am going to just give a quick summary instead of a detailed report so that I can at least give my thoughts on the Retribution. After that, we will be heading back to the future... far, far into the future in fact, all the way to the 41st millennium. That's right, I am dabbling with 40k again and the conversion ideas are just flowing like mad! So sit down and strap in because we are about to hit the ground running!
Well, kind of...
As I mentioned earlier, I had a few slight problems that kept me from doing the Battle Report quite in the fashion that I had wanted. I was still able to get some kind of an idea how the Retribution played so lets take a look at how it went.
We played two games featuring the Retribution against the Circle of Orboros. This right here actually put me slightly off right from the get-go because of the way that most of the Retribution stuff works. If you look at the various spells for the 'casters, most of them are either geared toward or received a bonus for targeting 'jacks. Against Circle, not so much. This made things kind of tricky as I was just trying to figure out what would be the most effective spells to use.
The 'jacks on the other hand were pretty potent. In addition to the force shield, they also add any focus left on them onto their armor stat. That's right, just like a 'caster. This meant that my Griffon light 'jacks were running around with ARM 20 on turn one while the Hydra was up to ARM 21. Of course this goes away in your following Maintenance phase... except on the Hydra. That's right, it can sit on that focus from turn to turn without loosing it which comes in pretty handy, let me tell you.
In addition to these two types of 'jacks, I also used a Gorgon and a Pheonix in the games as well. Due to some crappy die rolls on my part, the Gorgon pretty much just died (to an Argus of all things!!!) while the Pheonix proved to be a pretty potent 'jack, taking out another Argus in a single round. I also really liked the Pheonix field on it as well; recharging the field without spending focus is a good thing, especially since I couldn't roll higher than a 1 whenever I tried to do this.
As for the units, I was able to try out the Invictors and they were not bad at all. Having a ranged unit is really nice and the fact that they can buff each others ARM when they are in base to base helps out as well, though I was really worried about how that would work with AoEs. A couple of well placed ones could have caused some serious damage.
So overall, just how were they to field? Not bad, definitely a different style army than I am used to. The 'jacks in particular I found were a little tricky to get my head around (mainly due to the power fields) but they definitely packed a pretty good bang for the buck and having the ranged units was a nice change as well. As far as the warcasters, I definitely prefer Kaelyssa over Vyros because of her speed. Vyros is pretty slow and being used to someone like Deneghra makes losing 2" off my movement kind of annoying.
The other big question is will I still be collecting a Retribution army when they come out. As of right now no but this is mainly due to financial reasons. They seem like they will be an enjoyable army to play and I think that the way they are selling the units is much better than the current set up (whole unit in the box with no more blisters) but investing in building up a completely brand new army just doesn't fit into the grand scheme of things for me right now. Just means that I'll have to keep expanding my Cryx army instead... :)
From the Workbench
That's right, I have decided to unearth the Workbench again. I recently was asked about playing a game of 40k so I decided to start digging out my old models and figure out just how the game works again. I know, you're asking yourself "But what does this have to do with the workbench?" One of the things that I really enjoy the most about 40k is the conversion possibilities. The GW plastics are a dream to work with in this regard and with more and more of their lines being switched over to plastic this turns GW stuff into a hobbyist's dream. Their metal minis can be very expensive but most of the plastic ones are actually pretty reasonable compared to other minis that are out there and the quality of the plastics just keeps getting better as well. But enough talk already! It's time to get to the Workbench.
Months ago I first posted about creating my Genestealer Cult using the Tyranid Codex as the basis for all the selections. This means a lot of "counts as" models but on the whole I love the concept. That said, there are parts of the cult that can simply be used as is. It is a Genestealer cult after all, so of course it will include Genestealers.
Some of you might be wondering just how this is a Workbench segment if I am just going to be talking about Genestealers. After all, they come in a box, slap them together and bam, they're done, right? Not exactly.
One of the interesting things about the fluff for the 'Stealer cult is how they move among the masses on the planet and gain new followers. Traveling from town to town in small caravans as they spread the good word, there are those covered in robes that remain in the transports at their destination until they can be unloaded away from prying eyes.
As for how this concept fits into the game, I decided that there are two ways that I could work this into the list. The first option is to make these a unit with the scuttlers biomorph. Since this gives the unit the Scout ability, this really fits the fluff as it represents the disguised 'Stealers taking advantage of the confusion to move forward into a better position. The second option is to use these as the retinue of the Broodlord which gives them the Infiltrate ability, an even better fit for the fluff in my opinion.
The next step is to take the stock standard 'Stealer and use some putty to sculpt on some tattered robes. The first couple that I did with this method I really aimed for a very tattered and worn look, even going so far as sculpting on some large patches on the fabric. This was not bad looking, but I decided to try something a little different on the next two. Instead of going for the completely tattered look, I decided to try to layer the putty on to create something that looks much more like a robe. Of the two approaches, I like how the robes came out better but I will still be using both to fill out the retinue.
Here are pictures of the first two that I did in the "beggar" style tattered robes...
...and here are some pictures of the second two that I did with much more constructed robes.
Of the two sets, I really prefer the look of the latter robes but we'll see how they all turn out after I get some paint onto them. I also need to do some more 'Stealers and also give the Broodlord his own robe as well, then HQ selection for my cult will be complete. Next up after that will be the Brood Brothers but more on them in a future issue.
The Parting Shot...
And there you have it! Not quite what I had planned... actually nothing like I had planned but that's par for the course with life sometimes. As always, your feedback is appreciated so feel free to post away in the comments. Looking into the future, some of you are probably wondering what direction I will be heading in next since this one has had more of a 40k slant than has been the norm. Well, right now I am looking at running a little "contest" between myself and few friends as we start to dabble with 5th Edition 40k again and if that happens then I will be covering that in the Dispatch. We are still working out the details though so more on that soon. Until then, thanks for reading and may all of your dice come up Dragons!