Warhammer 40K Video Bat Rep Tyranids vs Taudar

tauprop

Hundred dolla challenge match!! JY2 calls Reecius out for the $100 dollar prize, his Nids vs. Reecius’ Taudar. Can he do it? As always, check out the Tactics Corner for more videos!

JY2’s list and thoughts:

1750 Hive Fleet Pandora

Flyrant – Wings, 2xTL-Brainleech Devourers

Flyrant – Wings, 2xTL-Brainleech Devourers

1x Venomthrope

1x Zoanthrope

Tervigon

30x Termagants

10x Termagants

23x Gargoyles

7x Raveners

2x Biovores

2x Dakkafexes

Bastion

About my list:

Originally, I was thinking about bringing a super-optimized Tyranid spam list. However, I finally decided to bring just a balanced and fast Tyranid list. This was mainly because of 2 main reasons:

1. I only wanted to play with the models that I had. I didn’t want to proxy models that I didn’t have. A super-optimized list would have required me to bring a lot of models that I didn’t own.

2. I really didn’t want this to be a battle between just the lists. Well, it is a battle between lists, but it is more a battle between the synergies of the list rather than the units themselves. More importantly, this is a battle between the generals. If I can win this battle, it’s going to mainly be from the synergies of the list and my skills as a tactician rather than just running a list “that plays itself”. Basically, it’s going to take a lot of skill to make this list work, especially against Tau, and I was going to enjoy the challenge.

So now why raveners and gargoyles? We’ve discussed in depth how much better carnifexes and biovores were and how good the Heavy Support slots were, so why didn’t I just fill up my Heavies with as many units there as possible? The answer is that I wanted a very fast army with some resiliency as well. That’s why I went more heavy with the Fast Attack units. Raveners and gargoyles – especially the raveners – are really fast. They both complement my flyrants very well IMO. They also form a hammer and anvil combination. Gargoyles are the anvil and will help lock up units. The raveners are the hammer unit. They are the unit that will come in and wreck sh*t. In addition, you’re talking about 44 wounds between the 2 units. With cover and if only I could have gotten Catalyst, they can actually be quite resilient.

They also help me with my strategy of Positional Dominance. Because of their speed, I use them (and the flyrants) to control my opponent’s movements. Basically, I use them to keep my opponent off of the objectives so that I can get onto them. This gives me an inherent advantage, even if slightly, in that I already have the objectives and my opponent will have to be the one to have to shift me off of them. Thus, I actually don’t have to play as aggressively as I normally do. Against an ultra-shooty army like Tau, I can actually sit back and dare him to come towards me. And if he does, I have the fast units that can make him pay, both with assault and with my shooting.

Pre-game Analysis:

This is going to be even more of an uphill battle than I had thought. Why?

1. No Catalyst. Against super-shooty armies like Tau or mechdar, you need Catalyst. It’s what will give you a chance against them, because you’re not going to be getting cover. With 2 flyrants and 2 other psykers, I actually had a very good chance to get at least 1 Catalyst. Well, I didn’t.

2. Hammer & Anvil. Against a shooty army, this is perhaps the the worst deployment type for me. Although I had a fast army, I had nothing that can get really deep into my opponent’s deployment zone. No trygons or mawlocs to deploy into his backfield to force him to deal with. No other flyers except for my flyrants. Thus, if I had advance, most likely my bugs are going to get shot down. Flyers don’t mean that much to my opponent’s army, not with all the twin-linking, skyfire and markerlights he had in his army.

3. My opponent was going 1st. That means he will get the alpha-strike.

4. Anti-air. His anti-air shooting was just too good. Both riptides have skyfire, he’s got a quad-guns and almost all his shooters will be twin-linked. Commander will twin-link 1 riptide. Farseer will guide/prescience the other riptide and wraithknight. Broadsides themselves are already twin-linked. Then he’s got the pathfinders which can help to increase the BS of his shapshots. Without Catalyst, my flyrants wouldn’t even last 1 turn out in the open. Heck, he actually have the firepower to take out both flyrants in just 1 turn of shooting.

5. My list is balanced, but it isn’t particularly optimized. Then again, I prefered to go with what I’ve got as opposed to what I really wanted.

However, it is not all doom & gloom. Despite a big mountain to climb, I have a few advantages:

1. Good terrain. Terrain was favorable to tyranids, though most of the terrain was quite far away from my opponent. The game would probably not even been this close if not for the central LOS-blocking terrain.

2. I’m going 2nd. I have the final say with regards to the objectives.

3. I’m hoping Reece will under-estimate my tyranids. I think I can surprise him with my gameplay. That sometimes happens when one person thinks that there is too big a rift between 2 armies. I know I’ve done it before also, under-estimating my opponent because I thought it would be an easy win and then losing because either he out-played me or because of a few bad rolls.

4. Synapse. It’s not as big a crutch as most would think, especially if you do it right. So far in all my games that I’ve played, I’ve had no problems with Synapse. That is also why the bastion is sooooo good. 1 zoanthrope either inside or behind the bastion is all you really need.

So my prediction is that it will be an extremely tough battle for my bugs. This may even be tougher than Tyranids vs Venom-spam of yesterday’s Tyranids, but it is still a winnable game for me. Now I won’t guarantee a win for my bugs, but I will guarantee you that I will give my opponent, no matter who he is or what army he is running, a competitive game.

Coming up later…..Analysis of the Game and my Strategy.

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About Reecius

The fearless leader of the intrepid group of gamers gone retailers at Frontline Gaming!

48 Responses to “Warhammer 40K Video Bat Rep Tyranids vs Taudar”

  1. Fister January 18, 2014 2:54 pm #

    Nice! Hard fought.

    Keep the Nid BatReps coming!

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 18, 2014 3:11 pm #

      More challenges on the way!

  2. Crispy January 18, 2014 3:07 pm #

    Wow… Brutal match haha! nice try with that attempted sneaky steal haha!

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 18, 2014 3:11 pm #

      If I had gotten Fortune off, it would have been game over turn 1! Doh! And 8 wounds on my own Riptides! hahaha, double doh!

    • jy2
      jy2 January 18, 2014 4:26 pm #

      It was a calculated strategy on my part. A 1/3 chance to win it on Turn 5 is a million times better than a suicidal attempt to take on his army head-on. Thus, I wasn’t kidding when I said I was playing for Turn 5. It was a gamble, but it was also my best chance at winning in what would have been an otherwise lopsided game in favor of Taudar.

      • bugsculptor January 18, 2014 11:09 pm #

        Very well played Jim. Great analysis of the mission and strategy… I was rooting for you on that final dice roll.

        How are you finding the bastion? That actually looks like a surprisingly useful unit… 3+ cover to hide big bugs behind and a cheap way to extend backfield synapse and keep it alive.

        • jy2
          jy2 January 18, 2014 11:32 pm #

          For me, I have only 5 must-takes in my Tyranid army. The 1st 2 are the dual flyrants. #3 and #4 are 1 venomthrope and 1 zoanthrope. The last auto-include to my army is the bastion.

          For a piece of terrain, it is actually a very good force-multiplier of an investment. There are so much tactics you can do with it. For example, if you want to play a reserves-heavy army, just add a Comms relay to it. These are the type of things people don’t really think about, but that can be done with the bastion.

  3. Fagerlund January 18, 2014 3:11 pm #

    Awesome game! The mind games…

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 18, 2014 3:12 pm #

      Yeah, no kidding, I find high level play is 99% psychological.

    • jy2
      jy2 January 18, 2014 4:29 pm #

      Lol. You should have seen Reece on Turn 5, pondering how he was going to stop me from contesting his objectives. I could have probably gone out, grabbed a burger, ate, come back and be just in time to take my turn. 😉 Haha….j.k. I really had Reece sweating on Turn 5 but he did the best he could to try to prevent my flyrant from contesting.

      And then I surprised him by taking out all of his scoring units by that objective on my Turn. Thank you Psychic Scream.

      • Fagerlund January 19, 2014 1:46 am #

        Yeah I was really impressed by how you controlled this game from start to finish. I think Reece is a good player, but you where totally inside his head. I bet Reece thought he was winning all game long until that fifth turn! Kudos to Reece for seeing the trap in turn five though. 🙂

        • jy2
          jy2 January 19, 2014 8:10 am #

          That’s what happens when you under-estimate an army. It’s happened to me a couple of times as well. I look at an army, anaylze the matchups and play in coasting/easy mode, only to lose because 1 dice roll messed me up and/or I under-estimated the effectiveness of a particular combo/strategy from my opponent. That’s what I felt happened here and it almost cost my opponent the game.

  4. HalfricanKing January 18, 2014 3:26 pm #

    I hope the Superbowl has this much suspense.

  5. Son of Dorn January 18, 2014 3:29 pm #

    So does Jy2 get a box of gants as a consolation prize?

  6. steven morrow January 18, 2014 3:57 pm #

    wow well done.

    • steven morrow January 18, 2014 3:58 pm #

      Valuable lessons here on using assault armies and fighting taudar.

      • steven morrow January 18, 2014 4:04 pm #

        im wondering if this sort of strategy would work better with fexes armed with pair of brainleech and a stranglethorn instead of two pair of brainleech

        • jy2
          jy2 January 18, 2014 4:31 pm #

          It could be worth a try in the future. I definitely like the idea of it. The only problem would be the modeling part. I just may proxy that config in casual play.

      • Hugz4Genestealers January 20, 2014 3:08 pm #

        Also I think it’s worth pointing out how critical having LOS-blocking terrain on the board is to combating an army like that for nids, as giving a full taudar army free reign to shoot at anything it likes turn 1 is going to probably cost you the game.

        • Reecius
          Reecius January 20, 2014 6:07 pm #

          No doubt, that’s why we’re going crazy making LoS blocking terrain for the LVO. Without it, it’s not even a game.

  7. Aidobmac January 18, 2014 3:57 pm #

    That batrep was awesome! I love how the big terrain promotes strategic plays to win games instead of, like JY2 said, the spam games. True Tactical genius!

    • jy2
      jy2 January 18, 2014 4:33 pm #

      Yeah, this type of game is one of the most challenging and also most rewarding as well. I’d say it was probably 66% tactics and only 33% list. You really have to think in this type of matchup. Brute force won’t necessarily win it for you.

  8. jy2
    jy2 January 18, 2014 4:22 pm #

    1750 Hive Fleet Pandora

    Flyrant – Wings, 2xTL-Brainleech Devourers
    Flyrant – Wings, 2xTL-Brainleech Devourers

    1x Venomthrope
    1x Zoanthrope

    Tervigon
    30x Termagants
    10x Termagants

    23x Gargoyles
    7x Raveners

    2x Biovores
    2x Dakkafexes

    Bastion

    About my list:

    Originally, I was thinking about bringing a super-optimized Tyranid spam list. However, I finally decided to bring just a balanced and fast Tyranid list. This was mainly because of 2 main reasons:

    1. I only wanted to play with the models that I had. I didn’t want to proxy models that I didn’t have. A super-optimized list would have required me to bring a lot of models that I didn’t own.

    2. I really didn’t want this to be a battle between just the lists. Well, it is a battle between lists, but it is more a battle between the synergies of the list rather than the units themselves. More importantly, this is a battle between the generals. If I can win this battle, it’s going to mainly be from the synergies of the list and my skills as a tactician rather than just running a list “that plays itself”. Basically, it’s going to take a lot of skill to make this list work, especially against Tau, and I was going to enjoy the challenge.

    So now why raveners and gargoyles? We’ve discussed in depth how much better carnifexes and biovores were and how good the Heavy Support slots were, so why didn’t I just fill up my Heavies with as many units there as possible? The answer is that I wanted a very fast army with some resiliency as well. That’s why I went more heavy with the Fast Attack units. Raveners and gargoyles – especially the raveners – are really fast. They both complement my flyrants very well IMO. They also form a hammer and anvil combination. Gargoyles are the anvil and will help lock up units. The raveners are the hammer unit. They are the unit that will come in and wreck sh*t. In addition, you’re talking about 44 wounds between the 2 units. With cover and if only I could have gotten Catalyst, they can actually be quite resilient.

    They also help me with my strategy of Positional Dominance. Because of their speed, I use them (and the flyrants) to control my opponent’s movements. Basically, I use them to keep my opponent off of the objectives so that I can get onto them. This gives me an inherent advantage, even if slightly, in that I already have the objectives and my opponent will have to be the one to have to shift me off of them. Thus, I actually don’t have to play as aggressively as I normally do. Against an ultra-shooty army like Tau, I can actually sit back and dare him to come towards me. And if he does, I have the fast units that can make him pay, both with assault and with my shooting.

    Pre-game Analysis:

    This is going to be even more of an uphill battle than I had thought. Why?

    1. No Catalyst. Against super-shooty armies like Tau or mechdar, you need Catalyst. It’s what will give you a chance against them, because you’re not going to be getting cover. With 2 flyrants and 2 other psykers, I actually had a very good chance to get at least 1 Catalyst. Well, I didn’t.

    2. Hammer & Anvil. Against a shooty army, this is perhaps the the worst deployment type for me. Although I had a fast army, I had nothing that can get really deep into my opponent’s deployment zone. No trygons or mawlocs to deploy into his backfield to force him to deal with. No other flyers except for my flyrants. Thus, if I had advance, most likely my bugs are going to get shot down. Flyers don’t mean that much to my opponent’s army, not with all the twin-linking, skyfire and markerlights he had in his army.

    3. My opponent was going 1st. That means he will get the alpha-strike.

    4. Anti-air. His anti-air shooting was just too good. Both riptides have skyfire, he’s got a quad-guns and almost all his shooters will be twin-linked. Commander will twin-link 1 riptide. Farseer will guide/prescience the other riptide and wraithknight. Broadsides themselves are already twin-linked. Then he’s got the pathfinders which can help to increase the BS of his shapshots. Without Catalyst, my flyrants wouldn’t even last 1 turn out in the open. Heck, he actually have the firepower to take out both flyrants in just 1 turn of shooting.

    5. My list is balanced, but it isn’t particularly optimized. Then again, I prefered to go with what I’ve got as opposed to what I really wanted.

    However, it is not all doom & gloom. Despite a big mountain to climb, I have a few advantages:

    1. Good terrain. Terrain was favorable to tyranids, though most of the terrain was quite far away from my opponent. The game would probably not even been this close if not for the central LOS-blocking terrain.

    2. I’m going 2nd. I have the final say with regards to the objectives.

    3. I’m hoping Reece will under-estimate my tyranids. I think I can surprise him with my gameplay. That sometimes happens when one person thinks that there is too big a rift between 2 armies. I know I’ve done it before also, under-estimating my opponent because I thought it would be an easy win and then losing because either he out-played me or because of a few bad rolls.

    4. Synapse. It’s not as big a crutch as most would think, especially if you do it right. So far in all my games that I’ve played, I’ve had no problems with Synapse. That is also why the bastion is sooooo good. 1 zoanthrope either inside or behind the bastion is all you really need.

    So my prediction is that it will be an extremely tough battle for my bugs. This may even be tougher than Tyranids vs Venom-spam of yesterday’s Tyranids, but it is still a winnable game for me. Now I won’t guarantee a win for my bugs, but I will guarantee you that I will give my opponent, no matter who he is or what army he is running, a competitive game.

  9. BeeCee January 18, 2014 5:18 pm #

    This was a great battle. I would love to hear more from Jim regarding his tactics and unit selections.

    • BeeCee January 18, 2014 6:31 pm #

      Doh, I didn’t refresh and see that Jim had written a TON of stuff. sorry about that!

      • jy2
        jy2 January 18, 2014 11:33 pm #

        I will go more in-depth with regards to my tactics tomorrow.

  10. NIK2286 January 18, 2014 7:23 pm #

    What are those fences made from?? I believe the same material is used on the top of the building closest to Reece’s side of the table when he’s shooting the final roll. Let me know please!

  11. Carl Tuttle January 18, 2014 9:20 pm #

    The ultimate question is – was the game FUN? And if you can answer yes to that question… then the bugs have succeeded this game.

    • jy2
      jy2 January 18, 2014 11:37 pm #

      To the casual observer, it might not look fun just because there wasn’t a whole lot of action. But to both Reece and I, yeah, it was fun. It was actually a very tense game with a lot of tactical play on both sides, though I’m not sure if Reece realized it until about Turn 4 when he say that he could actually lose the game. In any case, I viewed it more as a cat-&-mouse game with moves and counter-moves and a final push to try to win it on Turn 5. I had fun and I’m pretty sure the challenge I gave to Reece made it a fun game for him as well.

  12. Black Blow Fly January 18, 2014 11:40 pm #

    Great game! I learned a lot. The long deployment hurt Tyranids the most. Very well played.

    • jy2
      jy2 January 19, 2014 8:14 am #

      Thanks. Yeah, deployment was a huge factor in this game. If we were playing Dawn of War, I think the game would have been much more even. But H&A is really a tough deployment for bugs against an ultra-shooty army like Tau. Heck, it’s a really tough deployment for almost any army against Tau.

  13. Pascal Roggen January 19, 2014 4:24 am #

    Loved it!, more reps please:)

  14. Conflagration January 19, 2014 7:18 am #

    The only thing I really disliked about the whole game was that it was a good game only because there was a huge LOS blocking terrain in the middle so it can give any army a tactical advantage if used right. This proves even more how flawed the nid codex is it couldn’t do anything at all. Just sit and wait. If the wall wasn’t there the game for nids would have proved how underwhelming they are. And not all tourneys will have a huge LOS terrain in the middle.

    • jy2
      jy2 January 19, 2014 8:22 am #

      I see the LOS-blocking terrain as an equalizer in the game. Right now, the game so heavily favors the shooting army that, unless you’ve got super-fast, re-rollable 2+ units in your army, in most cases, assault-based armies are playing at an unfair disadvantage to start. I don’t see BLOS terrain as a tactical advantage. I see it is a necessity to make the game even playable for these types of armies.

      • bonesaww666 January 19, 2014 9:36 am #

        People largely undervalue terrain in this edition, even though we are supposed to have more in 6th, a fact I feel people regularly overlook.

        I can understand the 6 piece in tournament play as slapping 8-14 buildings/terrain pieces down on every table would becom cost prohibitive in a hurry, but it becomes almost as necessary as dice for a large portion of army builds.

        Tyranids, CSM, Orks, DEldar and Daemons (sans flying circus) all hit their stride when they have something to hide behind. Claiming Jy2 to have abused LoS is absurd, the game is meant to be a strategic battle of wits

        cudos on a game well done, I look forward to seeing you try again!

  15. scousematt January 19, 2014 7:20 am #

    Things I learnt from this bat rep:

    -Jy2 is very good at 40k.

    -I am very bad at 40k.

    • jy2
      jy2 January 19, 2014 8:23 am #

      Lol. You can get better. Anyone can as long as they are willing to.

  16. Deekers January 19, 2014 7:53 am #

    well played JY2, certainly giving us Nid players things to think about

  17. Ross January 19, 2014 10:28 am #

    Great report. The game looked like fun, but it also looks like Nids will definitely not be a good beginners army this edition.

    • jy2
      jy2 January 19, 2014 11:31 pm #

      Tyranids have definitely become more of a finesse army. It’s now somewhat harder to play, but I think newbies can still learn to play it as long as they’re willing to try. But for those who want an easy army with little thinking involved, better look towards another army.

  18. Cameron January 19, 2014 1:53 pm #

    Huge compliments to jy2 for having a chance to win that game. That was some real suspense!

    I’d be interested in a more reliable way to win games with tyranids than hoping for a 33% die roll =)

    • jy2
      jy2 January 19, 2014 11:37 pm #

      I think that if we were playing with another deployment type and if I had gotten even 1 instance of Catalyst, it opens up a lot more scenarios of winning with bugs. But as it was, this was probably the worst matchup with the worst deployment type and the worst psychic powers Tyranids could get. Trying to win it any other way else is probably a crapshot at best.

      There are no shortcuts. There are no “more reliable way to win games” with Tyranids. Against the top-tier lists, tyranids will almost always be the underdog army (with the exception of Daemons, which I feel tyranids match up against quite well).

  19. Baz January 19, 2014 1:55 pm #

    Is it an indication how crap the Nid codex is that a player as good as JY2 has to adopt a strategy that will give him possibly a 1/3 chance of winning and really outplay Reece to even get that small chance?

    I’d expect even a mediocre codex to reward good play better than that.

    That said I’ve really enjoyed all your battle reports guys and I’ve learned al lot.

    Thanks

    • jy2
      jy2 January 19, 2014 11:44 pm #

      I’m miffed that GW took away some of our options. Namely, our best chance against Tau last edition was with ymgarls, the Doom and Biomancy powers. Well, all that is gone now so it makes it even harder to play against this army (or other super-shooty armies like mechdar). Alas, to beat one of the top-tier codex, Tyranids have to play a smarter game than their opponents or have much better dice….and even that isn’t a guarantee for victory of any sort.

      Thus, if you want to play Tyranids, then prepare for some challenging battles ahead.

  20. michael January 19, 2014 9:21 pm #

    Jim, excellent job mate. Man I was really rooting for you on that final roll! Get some loaded snake eye dice.
    Nice savvy game, good luck with the nids.

  21. jy2
    jy2 January 19, 2014 11:28 pm #

    While it may not seem like it, there was actually a lot of strategy involved in this game. There was the overall strategy and then there were a lot of smaller, tactical nuances that defined the game. I shall break down both the larger strategy and some of the smaller, less obvious tactics as well.

    Reece’s Overall Strategy:
    What Reece wanted to do was to make me come to him. He wanted me to go all out against him. Hammer & Anvil deployment made this strategy almost a no-brainer. If I advance towards him, he’d get 1 turn of shooting against my flyrants and most likely 2 turns of shooting against any of my other units. That was why he deployed way back – to be able to maximize his shooting.

    SMS.
    Reece took advantage of a huge tactical blunder on my part. I made a huge deployment mistake with my venomthrope. I was thinking that if I deployed it inside the bastion, then Reece could fire his wraithknight at it in order to blow it up. Thus, I deployed my venomthrope outside of it, with the intent of entering it on my Turn 1. However, I had totally forgotten about Ripple-fire SMS from his riptides. Well, 8 TL-cover ignoring shots later and Reece got First Blood from my venomthrope. SMS played a huge role in this battle, letting him kill/hurt stuff that he couldn’t see.

    The Bait.
    This was actually a very good tactic, and most lesser-experienced players would fall for it. Basically, he deployed his jetbikes forwards as well as 1 unit of fire warriors to try to bait my flyrants with First Blood as well as a troop choice. Basically, if I had sent my flyrants out to take out his troops, I would most likely have lost them. Overall, the trade-off would have heavily favored Taudar.

    Grabbing the Relic.
    He wanted to get the Relic away from me. As long as it was there, I could have grabbed it at any time. More importantly, I could have grabbed it with my tervgion and then dropped it behind the BLOS terrain (due to the large base
    that my tervigon was on) where it would have been impossible for Reece to get it. This was the main reason why he had chosen to go 1st.

    What he did was actually quite brilliant. He picked up the Relic with his jetbikes. Then, instead of bringing them backwards, he actually moved them forwards into the ruins. This had the advantage of 1) protecting them from my biovores, who would only hit the top level of ruins with their barrages, 2) protect him from assault, as I cannot assault what I could not see and I can’t pass through the ruins because he is blocking them off and 3) he was still trying to bait my flyrants.

    Then on his Turn 2, he moved his bikers back and dropped the Relic out in the open. This way, he could shoot down whatever unit tried to pick it up. Meanwhile, he moved his jetbikes back to the safety of his deployment edge.

    Monsters to the flanks.
    He deployed his MC’s – the riptides and wraithknights – to the flanks in order to have the best lanes of fire for them and also to minimize the places where I could hide. Now here I would have played it a little differently from Reece. Whereas he normally tended to push his MC’s back with the JSJ (jump-shoot-jump) move, I would have actually pushed them forwards instead. This would have 1) given me even less places to hide as his visibility increases the closer he gets and 2) forced me to send a unit towards them, thus providing the rest of his army with some targets to shoot down.

    Protecting his objectives on Turn 5.
    This is where I almost got him. He was thinking that he had the advantage when he killed my carnifexes due to them being a Heavy Support. So if we both end the game with 2 objectives apiece, he would still the the Primary, Big Guns, because he would have been 1-up on me with the carnifex VP. He didn’t see until it was almost too late what my tactic was going to be, but he was able to recover on Turn 5 due to 2 huge jump moves (he got an 11″ jump move for both his missile drones and the Commander with Iontide). He was then able to block me off from contesting. In addition, he was able to put 3 scoring units – broadside missile drones, fire warriors and windrider jetbike – on that one objective that I would go after. So in order for me to pull off the upset, I had to actually get rid of all 3 scoring units on that objective…that was no easy feat!

    Jy2’s Overall Strategy:
    My overall strategy was to gamble for the Turn 5 win. Even a 1/3 chance to win on Turn 5 was better than a head-on battle with Reece’s Taudar in Hammer & Anvil deployment and with no Catalyst in my army. Yeah, it was a bad situation and a desperate win, but overall, I felt that it was actually my best chance for a victory.

    Positional Dominance.
    This is my philosophy on how to play objectives-based games. You have to play a little more aggressively and advance onto the objectives first, while keeping your opponent either too pre-occupied to move towards the objectives or somehow keep them away from the objectives. Basically, Positional Dominance is all about board control. Control where your forces will be. Control where you want your opponent to be relative to the objectives or your army. If you can take control, then you have the advantage. You will already be on the objectives whereas your opponent will have to fight to get onto his objectives. Meanwhile, your “forward” elements will be trying to contest his objectives/kill off his troops while your troops are somewhat safe. In short, if you do it properly, it will be his game to lose and your game to win.

    For my strategy to work, I needed to do a few things:

    Control the middle.
    Advance towards the middle. Hide and wait. If anything gets close, go after it and kill it. I’ve got 2 dakkafexes, the raveners, gargoyles and 2 flyrants. I think I should be able to hold the middle quite well. With a threat radius of up to 18-24″ with both shooting and assault, holding the middle means that I am actually controlling maybe about 75% of the board. I’ve actually got the mobility advantage against my opponent and by controlling the majority of the board, it would be easier for me to contest his objectives in the end than it would be for him to contest mine.

    Keep him in his deployment zone.
    Why is this important? Because if he advances, then I would lose the advantage of being able to control the middle. If he advances….if he played a little more aggressively….then he would have forced me to come out of “hiding” much earlier, thus exposing myself to the firepower of his entire army. And if I hadn’t, then his MC’s would have had a better lane of fire into my forces. So how do I keep him from advancing, especially along the flanks? By feeding him threatening units to keep him honest. If you’d notice, on Turn 1, I advance my raveners and gargoyles. Then on Turn 2, I pulled back my raveners and advance my gargoyles. Then on Turn 3, I advance my raveners again. On Turn 4, I finally advance my dakkafex. Finally on Turn 5, I went all out. If you hadn’t noticed, each turn, I was slowly feeding my opponent 1 unit at a time. This was to serve 2 purposes – 1) to keep his units back and 2) to serve as a distraction as well as to draw his firepower. Better for him to shoot at units that I want him to shoot at rather than at units that I don’t want him to shoot at. I was also hoping that by feeding him 1 unit at a time, it would mask my true intentions as well as to instill in him a sense of over-confidence…that he could do whatever he wanted to against my army. But the reality of it was, I was trying my best to control the situation by letting him kill what I wanted him to kill and to keep him out of “my territory”.

    Kill off his mobility.
    Another main part of my strategy was to kill off his mobility and to take away his ability to contest. Fortunately, for me, Reece only had 2 real units with mobility – his jetbike troops and his farseer so this was actually much easier to do than some of the other armies I’ve had to face. BTW, it was smart of Reece to turbo-boost his jetbikes back into his deployment zone on Turn 2. If he hadn’t of done that, what I would have done was to vector-strike his jetbikes and then fly off the board at the same time. This way, I would have achieved my goal of killing his mobility (as well as 1 scoring unit) and denying him his retaliation against my units as well.

    Contest at all costs!
    Actually, Reece finally realized what I was doing on Turn 4 and made a great recovery on Turn 5 to protect his objective. He actually had it protected in layers, with 3 scoring units on it. He completely ignored the Relic (not that he could get it this turn….his jetbike was still 2-3″ away after I shot at them and killed 2 bikers the previous turn with my dakkafex) and just moved everyone to protect the objective. He also got a little lucky with an 11″ assault move by his missile drones to then be able to reach his objective. In any case, contesting was now out of the question with all those troops screening it off.

    So my only choice was to kill anyone who was claiming the objective. First of all, I moved my tervigon up and then spawned some gants to go grab the Relic. I then did something that Reece just wasn’t expecting. He was expecting me to vector-strike his lone biker and then to shoot at one of his units. Instead, I cast Psychic Shriek and then shot at one of his units. Psychic Shriek came through for me big time. It killed his lone biker and also wiped out all but 1 fire warrior. It also killed a couple of missile drones as well. I even had a chance to take out his riptide, who had only 1 or 2 Wounds left, but Reece past that morale test. Then my newly spawned gants on the Relic shot down his last fire warrior. Finally, my biovores fired at his missile-drones and killed 2….and that was just enough to take them out of claiming range. So while I failed to contest his objective, I did something else that was just as effective….I took out all his scoring units around the objective.

    After that, it was just up to the Dice Gods.

  22. Remcoow January 21, 2014 4:54 am #

    Hey Jim!

    I loved the battle. To be honest I’m not that great a player and am not (yet?) able to device these subtle strategies. This led me to thinking you were playing a boring game (hiding behind the terrain piece, flying of the table). Only after reading your detailed thoughts and afterword about the game I greatly appreciate the game you played. I salute you!

    Wow, I really enjoyed it and its inspiring me to look at the game at a different angle. I especially enjoyed this because I’m a Nid player aswell and I greatly wonder where this (troubled) codex will lead us.

    Thank you for delivering one of the most entertaining and educating afterwords on a battle report.

  23. Cmdr Nearsight January 21, 2014 12:24 pm #

    Kudos to jy2, and I have great respect for your open-minded and very chill attitude towards the Nid dex, warts and all. You are a voice of reason with regards to the bugs, and are even able to articulate the poor parts of the codex in a reasonable manner. I too think Nids are going to be a finesse army for the very strategically and tactically inclined. They are not a point and shoot army that has a huge margin for error; Tau are a very forgiving army, whereas Nids are not. That being said, I think it is very telling that you had to face off against the pre-eminent army of the current meta (Taudar) with the worst deployment and with plenty of counters against your army (sky fire and ignores cover). You were playing at an extreme disadvantage, and yet still were able to play for the victory. I think it definitely shows that the Nid dex can be competitive, even though it doesn’t have the tools to rule the meta. I applaud your sportsmanship and generalship. Well done! Now take on Reece with an optimized Nid list! 🙂

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