Thursday, 10 November 2011

Kris Kross gonna make you jump jump ...

Things were just better back in the day .... well maybe not. But I'd rather have Kris Kross as the random kid gimic of my youth than most of the rubbish we get these days.

It all went down hill when Transformers and He-Man were replaced with nonsense like Tellitubbies or whatever the hell they were called. The days when you could get up at 5:30AM and watch awesome violence until 10:30AM until Gordon the Gopher told you to go outside and play for the rest of the day to burn off the sugar high from your 19th bowl of coco-pops ...

wait, what was I going to talk about?

Oh right yeah, Jumping. Or Blood Angels "Jumper" style armies.

Blood Angels are one of those very fortunate codex's that can actually put forward a few varied and challenging lists. They always seem to be right up there, and within the UK meta, actually do very well. As a codex is has access to a couple of powerful characters (Mephiston namely), one of the better utility HQ's and arguably one of the most broken sets of wargear, for a measly 1 KP you can give a 10" circumference of "yeah try that again" in a FNP priest. Oh and then its pumps your dudes charging into combat. Mephiston with the bubble? Dirty, thats what it is.

So lets run down the archetypes we can have:

Blood Angels Deathstar - This has been brewed up in many forms, from the "jawaballs" version of predator/razor spam with a big unit of Terminators that want to touch you in your happy place, to some even more grotesque lists that involve double/triple land raiders, minimal troops (often tucked up in a godhammer land raider) and Mephiston. And then some in between (Sharran Reddy, a UK tourney stalwart runs a very interesting list involving Mephiston, Raider-Star, Foot shooty terms and 3 sets of troops.
Predator Spam - Utilising both the fast status of all blood angels "rhino based" vehicles, cheap troop carriers (55 points for a LasPlas/AssCan, or 20 points for a HB/HF) and being able to field 6 predators - all of which can move 6" and fire to full effect (meaning they don't lose out to people trying to be clever and reposition fire lanes) this is a potent force for sure. Seeing around ~11 chasis's on the table at 1750 - around 6 of which will be AV13, 3 of which might well be scouting 18" into your face. Some (silly) people (ven) opt to run a Vindicator in this as well. However, it seems that not having searchlight by default might hurt the BA's - forcing them to look again at setups to make sure they have those lights available.

Descent of Angels - I've never quite got behind full on DoA based armies, to me it seemed like a tool to be used from the bag, but not default, with the advent of GKSS and Coteaz, probably a wise idea to approach a "DoA" list with more versatility, I.E not be screwed if you do have to deploy on the table.
Jumpers w/ Devs - This was the route a lot more people took recently. With basic troops and plenty of missiles, with lots and lots of FNP, its a horde, thats not quite a horde, but very hard to make go away. This also has flexibility in terms of DoA - or dropping in some meltacide units. Just be sure you understand the FAQ reserve rules with combat squads!

We have some other fringe strategies -

Kirby was a huge advocate of the "Blood Rodeo" concept about a year ago, really more with 2K points, but the idea of 20+ bikes and a ton of jumpers all running around does seem like a lot of fun.

Hybrid -  with some jumpers, more commonly just Sang Guard, plenty of "cheap" razor units and then either preds, devs or dreads to back them up. But one of the better hybrid strats I've seen saw Mephiston, 6 Razor troops (with a priest) 3 melta attack bikes and 3 squads of devs. Something like this could really perplex an opponent, as everything poses a threat left unchecked.

So plenty of strats to pick from. Certainly the GK's and SW's can rival, if not better the BA's in versatility of their books, but its just a mark of good design that your not pigeon holed into 1 or 2 very set builds.

But today, I am concerned with one thing - the Jumpers.

So there are pretty much two builds I'd be looking at:


Descent of Angels 1750:

1x Librarian - JP - 125 (Lance / Shield or Sword)
1x Honor Guard - JP 4xMG (205)

2x Sang Priest -  JP's / 2x Combi Melta / 1x LC (170)

10x RAS - MGx2 PF - 235
10x RAS - MGx2 PF - 235
10x RAS - MGx2 PW - 225
10x RAS - MGx2 PW - 225

Vang Guard - PF / LC / SSx2 / JP's (250)
Vang Guard - PF / LC / SSx2 / JP's (250)

So this list is far from perfect. I'd have to both play test it to work kinks out and adapt for my own playstyle. One thing I do like is that I am very used to foot armies. This army does suffer in one respect. It pretty much has to deepstrike. 40 Marines with 2 FNP bubbles and 5++ cover (at least) are pretty survivable, and the Honor Guard and Vang Guard could pretty much suicide (Honor Guard to open up something, Vanguard to get in and bust it up).

But overall there is a ton of options. Thats 14 melta guns, and we can make double/triple melta units, combat units, and have those VV's PF's come in and bust up tanks. Plus we have the Libbys lance ability.

One key thing to remember with DoA - your coming in T2, often declining to take first is a solid, as your engaging on your terms, and if you dont get good rolls when bringing them in, your giving your opponent T2 to shoot as well. Ideally you come in the end of T2, bust up some tanks, get some VV in combat against fangs, or even purifiers (remember you have storm shields!). If all goes wrong, at least they only get T3/4/5 to "wipe you out" and you can potentially have 8 scoring units!

Jumpers and Dev's - Foot Style

Librarian - JP - Fear/Shield

3x Sang Priest - 2xJP 2xLC - 1x Foot - 230

10x RAS - PF MGx2 - 235
10x RAS - PF MGx2 - 235
10x RAS - PW MGx2 - 225
10x RAS - PW MGx2 - 225
5x Scouts

5x Dev's 4xML- 130
5x Dev's 4xML- 130
5x Dev's 4xML- 130

I actually think this is fractionally over - I'd drop the LC's on the priest in that case. This army actually operates a bit like my Deathwing, except a bit more coherently. You have 43 FNP marines moving forward into the front field. Hugging cover for a 3+/4++/4+++ save structure. I wasn't quite sure on the powers I want, but I like fear in this scenario, most of the time you will look to run, but often that won't be advantageous, and you might not need his 5++, so fearing a mob of orks for example might not be the worst thing in the world. Lance is next to useless, though Sword might be decent. Unleash could be great, but it also might be terrible.

Then we have the core at the back. Scouts offer a nice cheap sitter, I'd probably reserve them most games, bring them on and go to ground. If I have points they'll defo have cammo cloaks and rifles, just to offer some support. On top of that we have the next best devs to fangs, the blood angels variant, having a missile fire off at BS5 is nothing to sniff at, and whats better, they have FNP - if I had points I'd love a PW at the back field, just to offer a big threat, much like Ven's objective sitter wolf guard. Thats 20 bodies in the back field, quite possibly all with FNP, all capable of putting down long range fire. Supporting those 40 moving forward.

Not too shabby.

Which to run? 

Well, I probably won't be seeing any hobby time until the new year, and what with Star Wars: The Old Republic leveling being required, I doubt I'll get much in either, certainly not made. I'd love to run some games against Atreides with these lists and see how they fare. 

Right now I am leaning towards the foot variant. Though the DoA list looks more fun. Though fun can be injected into the foot version by simply adding Mephiston - at the cost of stability (backfield scorers and maybe a priest) for the cost of awesome? Could be fun!

Either which way, if I do make these boys, they will be the Lamenters. 

I absolutely love their fluff, which is rare for me to say, as I don't actually like most marine fluff. Dark Angels I also loved, but I never liked their actual paint scheme (which sucked as the models were amazing - best marine models ever).

Not only that, the Lamenters have a brilliant paint scheme. Initially I hated the heart, but I grew to accept it. The yellow is spectacular, and I've always said, a good yellow will just outright beat the majority of paint jobs out there, just on sheer merit of how hard it is to make a yellow good, let alone great.

Looking through my bits box I have enough for the majority of either army, plus my Sarges, or Priests, can be the DA Vet models which is fantastic.

SWTOR / Plus whats happened to my Star Wars count as?

Speaking of SWTOR, while work has kept me from doing anything, my team is working pretty hard on some cool stuff, and I've been left in charge of the PVP (player versus player) bits. I have some potentially ground breaking things planned, using my experience from professional FPS and World of Warcraft background, plus the fact that most of us still have the numbers and contact details for most of the gaming divisions of major companies. 

This is in part why I WONT do the Star Wars force. As much as I love star wars (and I do) - it will be absolute over load. SWTOR will take up much of my very little free time, and unlike games like WOW, I'll actually pay attention to the story within the game, meaning slower leveling and, heaven forbid, alts! 

Put it this way, if your looking to play SWTOR and are either in the UK or in EU, being on our server is probably the best thing going!

Whats to come?

So I am still certainly on hiatus. I will proxy some games with Atreides, I feel like he's not getting much of a challenge at the store, and outside of 1 or 2 guys, I'll be better rusty, than them fresh (plus I imagine he is sick of rule arguments already).

So really my main contribution until the new year is just going to be looking at some other peoples armies, paint job's, and conversions, and hopefully inspire some people, unlock some secrets if we can, and maybe give some productive tips and hints. Also I think one of the most fun and inspiring things you can do is to look at cool other armies, and I dont think we have enough pictures here! 

So look for that possibly over the weekends! I actually have my first show case planned. Its very cool, and when I first saw it I really wanted to do it myself! 


  1. Always great to read a bully post...its like a sprawling, epuc never know where it'll take you or what you'll encounter along the way!
    I do think a lamnters jump force would look amazing out on the tabletop...go get it done!
    I aslo look forward to a hobby showcase feature, great idea bud..