Exploring the New ITC Missions

itc.logo.01.1This year, the ITC has changed its ITC missions, furthering to seek a better balance between the tradition book missions, new maelstrom, and also changing the bonus points for each game. The desire appears to be to make each game a unique experience and not the same thing over and over again, which is great. I know I can get very bored with the same thing over and over again in just about anything.

This year, the Eternal War missions and the Maelstrom missions are both worth 4 points each. Increasing the Maelstrom missions by 1 point may not seem like much, but when games are often decided by that one point, it can be huge. This allows a player to create lists that focus towards either main mission and still have a chance of winning.

Bonus Baller

The biggest change though, are the three bonus point missions, each worth one point. First Blood, Slay the Warlord, and Linebreaker are all still in there in certain missions, but a bevy of new ones are also there. These bonus points are huge factors in who wins the game and if you are not ready for them, it will cost you dearly. Let’s take a look at these new bonus missions first.

o    First Blood: Per the book.

o    Linebreaker: Per the book.

o    Slay the Warlord: Per the book.

o    Big Game Hunter: At the end of the game, of all destroyed units, the player that destroyed the unit worth the most points wins this point.

Note: Independent Characters count as their own unit, regardless of whether they are in another unit or not.

Note: Combat Squads of Marines count as a two units, each worth half the total cost of the unit.

o    First Strike: A player earns this point if they destroy an enemy unit in the first game turn.

Note: Bother players can earn this point.

o    Table Quarters: The player with the most Kill Points of units that are more than 50% in a table quarter controls that quarter. The player that controls the most table quarters wins this point.

Note: Independent Characters only count as a point for this objective if they are not in a unit.

Note: Units in a transport do not count towards this objective unless they are outside of their transport.

o    King of the Hill: The player with the most points worth of units at least partially within 6″ of the center point of the table wins this point.

Note: a unit under half of it’s starting value, a monstrous creature below half it’s starting wounds, a vehicle below half its starting Hull Points value, all count for half points, rounding up.

Note: this is the old Victory Points system, you count the points you paid for a unit, not Kill Points.

o    Ground Control: Control or contest two or more objectives at the end of the game to achieve this point.

Now lets take a look at which of these missions favors which kinds of armies.

MSU:

Linebreaker

Big Game Hunter

Table Quarters

Ground Control

Mobile:

Linebreaker

King of the Hill

Ground Control

Table Quarters

First Strike

First Blood

Slay the Warlord

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADeathstar:

First Blood

Slay the Warlord

King of the Hill

Big Game Hunter

Shooty:

First Blood

Slay the Warlord

First Strike

Big Game Hunter

Horde:

Table Quarters

Linebreaker

King of the Hill

Ground Control

Flyer Heavy:

First Blood

First Strike

Table Quarters

Ground Control

King of the Hill

Elite: (Ala Adamantine Lance)

First Blood

King of the Hill

Ground Control

Assault:

Linebreaker

Ground Control

Table Quarters

This is not the end all be all list of types of armies out there, just a lot I’ve seen recently and many armies will take on qualities of more than one type. For instance, my Centurionstar list is a Deathstar/Shooty/Elite/Mobile list. Many lists will flirt the boundaries between different styles which is a great thing. Most people focus towards one kind of list as it appeals to their personality. I know lots of guys that love to shoot shoot shoot and others that like to get close and punch you in the face with their lists.

I found that my list excelled in the bonus points of the book. It was great at getting First Blood as the Centurionstar and Dreadknights could move very far the first turn to strike where needed. It also excelled at denying Slay the Warlord and getting slay the warlord as the Centurionstar could just go to where the Warlord might be hiding and take them out. It was also pretty decent at linebreaker with my Scouts infiltrating or outflanking, the Strike squads deep striking, Dreadknights shunting, and Centuionstar jumping around as well.

With the new bonus points I am unsure. Here are the bonus missions I felt good at obtaining:

First Blood

First Strike

Slay the Warlord

Linebreaker

King of the Hill

Difficult ones for me to obtain are:

Table Quarters

Big Game Hunter

Ground Control

New Modified Maelstrom

The Maelstrom missions are also something that my list can struggle with, especially if the dice don’t go my way. If I roll that lovely 6 Maelstrom, the one where you need three in your deployment and no enemy in your deployment, than you can just forget it! I hate the mission. J

The great thing about this though for all you Maelstorm lovers is that you can have that Maelstrom style army list and still have a chance at doing well. Don’t let that this is a tournament style mission take you away from the game. I would say that the amount of players that I have not enjoyed playing on both sides of the fence has been pretty equal. There are angry people upset with life that play tournaments and play casually. Your best bet is to be cool and try to be a fun person that will bring out that in your opponent.

Why is This Important

From a tournament perspective, you want to get the maximum amount of points in each mission. This was the only way I went to the finals at the LVO as I had pretty much max points in every game I played. Other than that, you just need to win every game, then you are a shoe in.

Your army needs to be able to score many objectives at once, be able to shift around the battlefield, kill things quickly, and endure to the final turns. There are many ways to go about doing this, which is one of the great things about 40k. There is an army for just about every personality and all the new releases have given a lot of room to explore new options and new list styles.

On A Personal Level

For me, I now wonder what I need to do to my list to help shore up these weak spots I now have in the new ITC mission format. I am excited that next month at our store we are doing Guardian Cup practice.

gctrophies(HEY! There are only about 10 spots left for the cup! Get yours today and face off against many of the West Coasts top players who are converging onto Portland, OR on May 23-24 for a battle of the ages! The food scene is amazing, the town is laid back, and the competition will be fierce! Get your tickets now!)

I will be able to play test it more against other tourney lists to see what I might need to do. I have some ideas, but I am still thinking and kicking things around. That is the main thing you need to do. Test your ideas out on the table, not in theoryhammer. Things can often work out very differently on the table for many reasons – dice, terrain, opponent, lists, beer, etc.

I think one of the things I like about this set of missions is that it really allows for many different types of armies to succeed. So get out there, start playtesting and see what you can do to have fun and win some games.

What do you think? What army styles have been working for you? This is obviously rose colored from my Deathstar perspective, but what about you Ork horde players or super MSU Space Marine players? What do you think about the new mission format and bonus point missions?

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About CaptainA

Aaron is a longtime gamer of many systems. He is an avid community builder of 40k and after running many 40k events in Portland, Oregon, has recently moved to Boise, Idaho and continues to host and run leagues and events. He has also recently expanded his repertoire and entered the second hand Warhammer business. Check out his website at www.trader-a.com to see how he can help you get rid off your old and unused models.

9 Responses to “Exploring the New ITC Missions”

  1. fluger May 2, 2015 12:59 pm
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    They look awesome. Good breakdown.

    • CaptainA May 2, 2015 4:37 pm
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      Thanks!

  2. tag8833 May 3, 2015 7:14 am
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    I like the new bonus objectives quite alot. The Maelstrom objective placement rules, and the maelstrom options could still use work. Also now that Maelstrom is equal importance to Eternal war there is a strong going 2nd bias in the overall mission. Consider fixing this by making Maelstrom score on the player turn rather than game turn.

    Here’s a little more details on my critiques.
    Maelstrom Objective placement. Usually objectives are placed in deployment zones. That means if you have 2 maelstrom objectives (1 and 2) and 1 gets placed in your deployment zone, and 2 is in your opponent’s then rolling a 1 is really easy on turn 1 and rolling a 2 is really, really hard. I think all Maelstrom objectives should either have one objective in both deployment zones, or be in no-man’s-Land, so as to encourage a more engaging (fun) / less gunline style of play. Maelstrom objective placement is different from EW objective placement, because for EW objectives you have an entire game to get to them. For Maelstrom objectives you’ve only got 1 turn. That means super fast lists like Eldar, Demons, and Tau have an easier time while IG, and Orks tend to struggle mightily if not done right. I don’t really see the point of writing missions to nerf IG and Orks and reward Eldar, Demons, and Tau, do you?

    Maelstrom Options
    The maelstrom objectives usually fall into one of these categories.
    1) Control an objective in your deployment zone (basically no work required)
    2) Control an objective in your opponent’s deployment zone (very difficult).
    3) Kill a unit (Reasonable for most armies)
    4) 3 units in your deployment zone, and no opponents (easy for gunlines, hard for more engaging armies. Very matchup, and list building dependent)
    5) get linebreaker (list dependent, but much easier for most armies than #4)
    6) Have more units in no-man’s-Land (This is slighly punishing to gunlines, and rewarding to more engaging armies.)
    7) control an objective in no-man’s land (I like this one).

    Better objective placement rules fix the problems with #1 and #2. I think #4 should be replaced with “if turn 1, run/TB/FO 3 or more units, otherwise declare a charge.” Because that is something that could be accomplished by any list, and forces tactical thinking.

    Alternatively, you could replace one of the Kill a unit points with my suggestion, and use #6 instead of #4.

    #5 should be updated to include an option for turn 1. For instance, if Turn 1, then it could become #4.

    • Roland May 3, 2015 7:29 pm
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      I agree with all your recommendations

    • Kartr May 4, 2015 7:14 am
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      I like this.

  3. DCannon4Life May 3, 2015 8:52 am
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    I approve of the Character/Unit and Unit/Transport limitations on holding Table Quarters. I will read the rest of the missions over the next week and see what I think. Glad to see you continue to work on refining your ideas.

  4. masos May 3, 2015 3:48 pm
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    Maelstrom scoring should be at the end of player turn like in the rule book. I totally agree.

    That was a amazing article that I can refer some of my local group to so they can get understand all the new changes. Thanks for the write up.

  5. Kartr May 4, 2015 7:17 am
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    I have to agree with others in this thread, Maelstrom should be scored end of player turn now. It made some sense when maelstrom was only a secondary, but now that it’s co-primary it gives to big if an advantage to the player who goes second. This is especially true in missions that don’t have first blood.

    • Kartr May 4, 2015 7:22 am
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      Of not if, stupid phone.