Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Introduction: Alex Rae and my Flesh Tearers

So I am writing an article for the first time on the blog, Gary 'The Voice' Percival told me I should do an introduction and here I am….

As someone who currently runs my power armoured models in the livery of the Flesh Tearers, Sons of Sanguinius seems a good fit!

I just read Andy's article where he brags (Editor: Strong word...was for a point! Introducing the 'Obnoxious' series)  about his teaching job. I feel inclined to mention I DJ for a living, work 2-3 days a week and also get flown round the world all expenses paid… PLUS I don't have to deal with teenage kids. Is that Top Trumps on his teaching job? haha
I like 40k. I have done since 1993. I started by buying White Dwarf issue 164 with my birthday money with that awesome looking Nurgle warrior on the cover for Man O' War.
Been hooked since then.
I love me some Power Armour. It's such an awesome looking design. So iconic! You can do so many cool things with it. I also happen to love armies that play up close and personal. World Eaters, Space Wolves, Flesh Tearers. They all hold a place in my heart. However I didn't really play the game from 4th Edition all the way through to 6th. I just followed passively, buying White Dwarves, picking up models that looked nice, going to Games Days and reading Black Library novels. I absolutely love the background of 40k.

When 6th Ed was released I started paying more attention and with a friend decided to get back into playing the game seriously. I went to a few Throne of Skulls events (as I didn't know about the Indy circuit) and met some cool people including Franco (from 40kUK) and the aforementioned Gary. I got into podcasts and set about educating myself about how the game works. I currently collect Flesh Tearers and have gone through a few iterations of the army using anything other than Blood Angels…. because I quickly found that Blood Angels pretty much do everything worse. So I initially ran a Space Wolves drop list at the start of 6th ed. I felt it was fluffy because the Grey Hunters all have Close Combat Weapons and you can attach Terminators to squads which represented the rarity of veterans in the rapidly dwindling Flesh Tearers Chapter. It also turned out to be quite good! Especially when I painted up 2 Rune Priests and added them in! However now the new Marine 'dex is out I looked into running something different.

The cool thing about Space Marines is you can really play vastly different styles using the different books (and now Chapter Traits). You may have read mine and Gary's article posted several weeks back running down a White Scars with Space Wolves list (way before it became super popular to do so). The list has changed slightly but it is still essentially the same. I am currently putting that together having great fun converting every model to be characterful and fitting of the Flesh Tearers! Hopefully I will be able to get some proper pics up for you soon.

I am looking to get involved in the Tournament scene very soon, but my perfectionist attitude towards painting and modelling along with my random work schedule as a DJ stopped me from being able to make it to the GT Heat 3 which I was signed up for. Hopefully Grav Guns on Bikes won't be totally rubbish come January as the meta shifts so quickly!

As an observer of 40k competitive play (more than I have actually partaken in tournaments for sure), I have noticed the importance of duality of purpose in units. It is great when something is REALLY good at a task, but if it is very good in two or more distinct roles you really see that unit shine consistently. I have really tried to embrace that ethos and play in a fluid and adaptive style so that if my plans and the dice disagree with each other I am not left hanging out to dry. Making the best of a bad situation seems to set the great players apart from the good.

One of the things I have noticed about many lists running Marine Bikes is the lack of flexibility. By that I mean, they are totally tied in to the strategy of ramming bike units down the opponent's throat and if that doesn't work they are pretty screwed. To have the option to sit back and do damage from afar then pounce on the enemy when weakened is vital. I would say this is the one weakness of the 'Deathstar' build using Chapter Master, Bear Lord, Rune Priest and Khan, even though it is admittedly very difficult to deal with. So with that in mind I have gone for a slightly more flexible ranged list taking advantage of the cheap Heavy Support options like Thunderfires and Long Fangs.
I am really enjoying playing on Vassal with a list with such mobility and flexibility after running Pod Wolves. And it is amusing to hear people on podcasts talking about the flaws in Grav Spam lists and knowing that I have already identified and covered many of those issues. I am still very much learning my way and am very far off from being expert on what I am talking about. But hopefully you guys find some of this rambling interesting and the different perspective from this n00b proves good reading as I go on my journey toward tournament competence.

Thanks for reading,

Alex Rae


  1. Welcome to the blog Alex - I feel we have a wide and diverse collection of (somewhat erratic) authors here and I am proud that we have a relative newcomer to the competitive tournament scene on board.

    It'll be great to have an author who references our beloved origins - the Sons of Sanguinius... these days there is little in the way of BA action on the site. I guess that was always the danger of running a blog over time in a hobby that fluctuates almost as regularly as the blog's owner lol!

    I look forward to seeing your posts on a weekly basis and seeing your characterful army develop buddy. I also eagerly anticipate a Voice/Logansama collaborative post or two in the near future..... I'll leave that dangling as a carrot or cliffhanger

    Thanks for your contribution dude... even if it made me feel old as fuck for remembering that issue of White Dwarf! :)