Before I dive into the main theme I'm going to give you a run down of Friday nights Fantasy games.
2000 point pitched battle. My list was 2 butchers, a Bruiser BSB, 7 Ogres with hand weapon and shield, 7 Ironguts, 2 units of 6 Leadbelchers, Ironblaster, thundertusk. I'll let Rich fill you in on the main details of his list but you can see it in the video below.
So having had the first turn, my iron blaster wiffed and couldn't fire second turn leaving me only causing 7 wounds! Rich managed to get one of his spells off that gave his archers and extra shot each (around 60 odd shots causing nine wounds) so only having a 5+ save left me feeling pretty pessimistic until I rolled:
|All my luck in one set of saves!|
|The end of my turn two sees me having crushed Rich's unit of Skeletons in one glorious charge on my right whilst my Iron blaster runs from the combat on the left leaving a sorry looking unit of Leadbelchers out matched against against the Necroknights...|
|Once Rich's Sphinx charges in to my middle unit of Leadbelchers and killed them my Thundertusk and Ironguts ran from the table leaving only my small unit on the right at the start of turn three, so we called it.|
|Only my Ironblaster was out on a limb as a movable cannon needs to get around the sides of the enemy.|
|It turns out that getting charged by three units of Ogres at once can be bad for a Skeleton's health...|
|I may not have many models but they are a lot more expensive than the few Tomb Kings that are left.|
Salute was a blast and it's always great to see the wide array of stuff on offer. The highlight for me though was Nic and I winning £65 bags from KR in our entrance packs. Lee was a bit gutted as he was in-between use but his didn't have a golden ticket. The bags look pretty good for carrying around board games so should be pretty useful. I also got the Astra Militarum codex (I understand the reasoning behind the name change but it's annoying to type so I'll carry on with Guard from now on) and have to say I'm pretty disappointed. They've removed a few units which I had in my army and I know have little use for the models as I don't use Infantry Platoons so can't just add them in as interesting units. It feels as though GW have a very clear policy of if we don't make a plastic kit for it doesn't get rules, which I can understand as they don't like playing in the same park as the other children let alone the same sand box. But this (along with my Ogre experiences) have lead to ask the following question:
Has the growth in the number of manufacturers in the war-games industry stifled GW's creativity?
I ask because a few years ago we were seeing a resurgence of odd-ball units and variety in the choices within the codices/army books as GW tried to encourage conversion creation (and selling more kits to make the conversions) and these gaps were filled by entrepreneurs (if being generous) or IP infringers (if being less so). Now with the Nid and Guard codices it has felt a little stale as GW doesn't seem to want to give anyone a chance to muscle in on their turf but has therefore removed options that people were very happily playing with. I guess I just find it sad that the creativity that was once essential to play the games has now created a situation where the lead manufacture is becoming more like the other games systems (Warmachine, Infinity, WildWestExodus etc) and limiting their game to try to control what models you can play with.
I'm hoping this is just a side effect of some cunning new strategy that will involve a looser release schedule and add on books that contain lots of new units and not the birth of some sub-codex contagion that sees a couple of minor rules changes chucked in to a £30 book to let you use the army you had in the previous codex for twice (or more) the cost.
PS. where the hell are the rough rider models and why are their rules still so terrible!