Going into the third round I was excited to be positioned where I was and thankful for playing both Necrons and Tau, but my odds of dodging Grey Knights were diminishing with each passing round. Bracing myself for the inevitable thrashing at the hands of Grey Knights I once again waited in line for the pairings posted on the wall and headed off to find out what awaited me at ‘Table 95’.
|Not the Actual table, but you get the idea...|
I arrived to find myself staring at two things, both of which were particularly odd. The first thing that caught my attention was the table, a GW Battleboard table with large landing pad on the hill on the left side and several buildings on each side. Basically at the end of each row of tables there is a ‘display’ type board which uses allot of thematic terrain and looks quite impressive but is a bitch to play on with lots of terrain blocking movement, lots of wobbly models, lots of very odd angles and no clear firing lines as you not only have to deal with the terrain but the height differences on the boards as well. This table in particular had a landing pad positioned atop the giant hill on the left side which basically eliminated 15% of the board right off the bat and blocked line of sight through it.
The second odd thing (you remember I said two right?) was the Eldar army across the table from me. Two large Guardian squads, Striking Scorpions with Eldrad and an Avatar, 6 war walkers in two squads, Dire Avengers in some floaty thing and some Fire Dragons in another floaty thing. The mission was pretty straight forward: kill points, objectives and destroy an enemy unit that you select at the beginning of the game. Had I been using my thinking cap I would have marked the Scorpions for termination but instead I selected the Fire Dragons. I say ‘using my thinking cap’ because you get a really great opportunity with that particular objective to remove a unit from the game as no player wants to give up an objective that easily and so most people will hide them where you can’t get at them, which also means they can’t get at you. That being said, my opponent selected one of my Landspeeders – which for only 60 points I was all too happy to leave hidden behind a building the entire game!
The Avatar and Eldrad ran right up the middle of the board with the Scorpions in front while the Dire Avengers ran straight forward up the right side against one of my objectives. The Guardians and War Walkers formed a base of fire on the back line taking advantage of cover to hold his objectives. I sent two squads with two speeders around the giant hill on the left flank to destroy the guardian squad and seize one of his two objectives while I set a trap with my bait squad for his avengers and pummeled the advancing Scorpions with bolter fire. The Long Fangs focused on and destroyed a squad of War Walkers because I know all too well from my lessons at the hand of Master Tony of the Craftworld Beatface that you don’t want those things breathing – at all.
The Dire Avengers took the bait and were all to happy to destroy the squad of 7 Grey Hunters that I fed them, only to get shredded by return fire from two well positioned Grey Hunter squads the following turn. My left flank assault destroyed the Guardians and forced Eldrad to divert from the center in an attempt to retake the objective. Clever tank shocking from the two rhino’s and some bad rolls on the Eldar half of the table kept Eldrad and his bucket of hate away from my guys long enough to lay Eldrad low at the hands of a torrent of fire leaving only the Avatar to try and dislodge the squad, which he would do eventually – but without any time left to do anything about the two rhino’s sitting on his objective or the two speeders doing the same.
During the middle of the game an odd thing happened that didn't have anything to do with the table. One of the judges came up to our table and asked my opponent to see the army list I had given him. He then took that list and compared it to the list I had turned in at registration. After deciding that the list I was playing and the one I turned in were the same he headed off - only to return 10 minutes later to check my opponents list. So don't discount the fact that you need copies of your list and you need to give them to your opponent, apparently they do check them!
At the end of the game there were a few guardians left holding one objective and the Fire Dragons tucked safely in a corner while the Avatar hammered away at some armor. I pulled out the win on one of the cinematic end tables against a very cagy opponent with an army I was all too familiar with, again the practice paid off. I knew the target priorities before we even began and I knew how much I would need to throw at what objectives in order to win the game. My opponent was from St. Louis as was an outstanding individual; he played his army masterfully and had an excellent demeanor and attitude throughout the match. A very pleasurable game on an odd table that could have become contentious but thankfully wasn’t - top notch.
|Random picture to see if you are still reading!|
In the future I will do an entire post on the terrain at Adepticon because that is an entire topic all in itself! This was a great with a great opponent and I have managed to get to 3-0 heading into the 4th round, now I know I’ll get Grey Knights after three great games against xenos armies, no way I can dodge the odds any longer. With a bit of nervous excitement I get a refill on my water, put back another fiber bar and after hitting the bathroom I look for Tim to figure out how his game went.