Captain A’s Top Things I Hate To See Across From Me At The Table

Every army has its weaknesses. The more you play your list, the more you will find those things that can put a damper on your day. This is a good thing in that it gives you an opportunity to think and plan for what to do when you see these things across the table. As an elite, small, psychic heavy, deathstar player I have come to not enjoy seeing these things across the table from me. Let’s take a look.


6. Lots of Warp Dice – I and only I am the psychic special flower! My Knights and Librarians are the psychic masters and no one can be their equal! When I see a lot of warp charges across from me, I get sad as this means I won’t be able to do as many powers as I would like. Smart players will use their large pool of dice to try to shut down one of my key powers.

Counter Tactic – I have to only go for one or two powers and make it statistically improbable for them to shut down any. Or I could got for a lot of powers, not caring if they shut down one.


5. Stomps – When I see a super heavy that can Stomp I take a deep breath and hold on. When that unit rolls a 6 and completely neuters my Centstar, I have to hold back the tears as I silently pull of the models that are just evaporated. It sucks losing complete models to luck, but that’s dice for you.

Counter Tactic – The main tactic is to shoot it off the table, putting my Centurions into opposite arcs and shooting into the arc that doesn’t have the shield first, hoping to take it down. I’ll also try to avoid close combat until it only has a few hull points/wounds left.


4. Too Many Bodies – Battle Co! No problem bro! Seriously though, too many bodies can be a big problem as I just don’t have enough to take out their whole army. All those bodies can be a hard thing to deal with as they can take the punishment and still score.

Counter Tactic – I’ll try to do a couple of things here. First is to try to kill in as many phases as I can. I’ll use Psychic powers like Terrify, Psychic Scream, Purge Soul, and Cleansing Flame to take out armies. Then in the shooting phase I’ll split fire, shooting Draigo’s Storm Bolter at one unit and the Cents at another so I can charge and possibly multi-charge to impact multiple units.

Firepower the more the merrier

3. AP2 Spam – I built my Centstar and list around the armor value of 2. It’s a blessing and a curse as I really only care about ap2, and some armies can put out a lot of ap2. Grav Cannons, Plasma, Ion Blasters, and other things like this make me grumpy. Even with an Invisible Centstar, every wound that gets through can be painful. Too much ap2 can quickly ruin my armies day.

Counter Tactic – Invisibility is important, but I’ll also try to get another defensive power off if something gets through. Shrouding or Forewarning and Sanctuary are great backups to protect me. Also using LOS blocking terrain to my advantage has helped out a lot as well. I’ll also deep strike into terrain to ensure I have a base cover save.


2. Void Shield – This thing is the bane of my Grav centric world. It’s a building darnit! Who brings a building to a gunfight! For those that don’t know, the Void Shield puts out 1-3 armour value 12 shields that protect anything within 12” of the Void Shield Generator model. You have to get through the shield before you can get to the tasty meaty stuff underneath. This has put a damper on my day at the top tables at the last TSHFT.

Counter Tactic – I’ve put in more things to impact that Void Shield. I loved my Hurricane Bolters as they gave me a strong tool against many other lists. I’ve had to go to Missile Launchers to have a better chance at cracking that code.


1. Culexus Assassin – This is the single unit I fear the most in the 40k universe as this one model can utterly destroy my entire Centstar. It steals my warp charges, shuts down my powers, and then blasts me with ap1 goodness. I hate this guy and have to completely change my tactics against it.

Counter Tactic – Typically its to null deploy against their army and hope that the Culexus comes on before my Centstar does so I can avoid it. This isn’t what I want to do as I want my deathstar on the table killing things as much as possible, but it is unavoidable against this model.

So there you have it, the things that scare me and ruin my day. I think the big thing to take away from this is that you should be thinking about the things that can really hurt your list and come up with ideas to counter it. It’s better to have some ideas before you get to the tabletop than trying to come up with things on the fly.

What about you? What will turn your game of 40k into a nightmare and what do you do about it?


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 to see how he can help you get rid off your old and unused models.

27 Responses to “Captain A’s Top Things I Hate To See Across From Me At The Table”

  1. Avatar
    Hotsauceman1 January 9, 2016 11:16 am #

    Well since I run SM Bikes alot
    1: Ignores cover ap3 or lower. That just sucks
    2: GMC, those just ruin my day, even with grav spam
    3: Scat Packs……nuff said. Seriously, we nerf tau but not that?
    4:Someone that needs a shower
    5: Flyers. Mine always die, but the opponents always seem to be made of plot armor

  2. Avatar
    Mike January 9, 2016 11:22 am #

    youd have a double whammy against my list! Battle company MSU spam with a pod culexus really puts centstars and seer councils in a catch 22. They need to get on the board and start killing ASAP if they want to chew through enough units….but the culexus!!!! 😀

    • Jason
      Jason January 11, 2016 10:05 am #

      Hey Mike, how do you get the pod for the Culexus in your Battle Company. Do you include a separate CAD with a pod as a FA choice? I’ve be thinking of adding a Culexus to my list but the pods in my Battle Company are dedicated transports so i can’t throw a Culexus in one.

  3. Avatar
    Ytook January 9, 2016 11:28 am #

    To be brutally honest the only thing I hate seeing is a deathstar, I just find them super tedious to play against :/

    That’s not helped by the fact that I’m not at all competitive and neither is my local area, so when someone rocks up with a super attuned deathstar it’s just annoying (I’ll still play, and lose, to them, as it’s not really their fault :P)

    • Avatar
      tag8833 January 10, 2016 5:58 pm #

      I’m a competitive player. Deathstars are no-fun to play against.

      By design they make the game non-interactive. Its no fun when you are the only one picking up models.

      • Avatar
        CaptainA January 10, 2016 6:49 pm #

        Kill everything but the star!

  4. Avatar
    Mike January 9, 2016 11:42 am #

    Mine from my battleco’s perspective:

    5. wraithknight
    4. Heldrakes
    3. Decurion
    2. Tau with lots of intercept
    1. Salty/angry/impatient opponents that seem like they don’t even want to be there. Thankfully I find those a lot more rare in 40k than they are in Magic tourneys.

  5. Avatar
    abusepuppy January 9, 2016 12:00 pm #

    >I’ll try to do a couple of things here. First is to try to kill in as many phases as I can. I’ll use Psychic powers like Terrify, Psychic Scream, Purge Soul, and Cleansing Flame to take out armies.

    This one is very clutch- Telepathy and Sanctic both have some strong attack spells, and using them to blast an extra 1-3 units per turn can really make a difference. Forcing morale checks in multiple phases can do a surprising amount of work- even ATSKNF units can be pushed out of position by a fallback move.

    I tend to find reserve-heavy armies tricky, since Windriders just don’t have the survivability to weather an enemy attack and then come back for more. Drop Pods are especially annoying because you have to deal with the contents AND that AV12 hull, which is obnoxiously hard to get rid of.

  6. Avatar
    Dakkath January 9, 2016 1:21 pm #

    Missile launchers
    Psychic deathstars
    Fast melee units
    Superheavy/Gargantuan Creature

    so, basically all the good units. Then again I haven’t been able to play much at all, but especially since 5th ed.

    • Avatar
      abusepuppy January 9, 2016 9:43 pm #

      >Missile Launchers
      >Good units

      Welcome, traveler from distant pasts!

      • Avatar
        Dakkath January 10, 2016 5:51 am #

        Greetings from late 5th edition tau! Where all the marines are carrying missile launchers, psyfledreads are the bane of my existence, there’s only one real army build for my faction, and necrons made people think ward could write a balanced dex.

  7. Avatar
    Morollan January 9, 2016 2:58 pm #

    I play Dark Eldar so I hate pretty much everything except a non-flyrant based ‘Nid list.

    • Avatar
      CaptainA January 10, 2016 5:12 pm #

      Oh cmon they aren’t that bad! 😉

  8. Avatar
    westrider January 9, 2016 3:54 pm #

    Running mostly Daemonkin these days, so my list is rather different. The only real overlap is things with Stomp, and I love when my Opponent’s wasted Points on a Culexus or VSG.

    The flipside of that, unfortunately, is that one of the big things I really don’t like to see are lists that can thin me down so much on the way in that I don’t have the hitting power left to do the job once I get there. Especially stuff that can play keep-away while still shooting, like Crisis Suits, Riptides, ScatBikes, and Warp Spiders. So, like, a third of the meta.

    The other thing that really worries me is rarer, but it does happen: Something that can out-fight me in CC. A well-built and played ThunderStar, a Chaos Knight with the Grimoire and Cursed Earth on it, some kind of LoW or something with Invisibility, stuff like that.

    These aren’t “give up” matchups, just that they’re gonna be harder than going up against a Battle Company or something.

  9. Avatar
    Ming January 9, 2016 7:30 pm #

    Anything fishy or with pointy ears.

  10. Avatar
    Kwodd January 9, 2016 10:41 pm #

    Hunter’s Eye Grav Cents are the worst.

    • Avatar
      CaptainA January 10, 2016 5:13 pm #

      I think Hunters Eye Grav Cents are the best!

      Until I start my War Convo, then yeah I agree! Those guys are jerks!

  11. Avatar
    Stilgar January 10, 2016 3:23 pm #

    Things I struggle with:

    5. FMC
    4. Psychic heavy armies
    3. Necron wraiths
    2. Wraith Knights
    1. Eldar jet bikes

  12. Avatar
    Chris January 10, 2016 7:27 pm #

    For the most part I hate GCs and supeheavies but not for their power in and of themselves. I hate them because as soon as I go to kill one the dice whiff everything. I had an imperial knight live against 2 warbosses and 6 nobz with pks and not even take a glance. Then there was the wraithknight that didn’t take any of the 7 wounds from powerklaws I dealt… Seriously my dice always quit against these guys lol. Also shooting isn’t any different lol.

  13. Avatar
    Bassface7 January 10, 2016 10:24 pm #

    Deathstars. I bring a competitive no-gimmick list and while it might be possible for me to beat deathstars every now and again they aren’t fun games. These days if i see a deathstar across the table I concede and go for a beer.

  14. Avatar
    Rugult January 11, 2016 9:59 am #

    Am I the only one who finds this article somewhat hilarious: “Oh man, I hate people who take Stomping models who can remove my Centstar off the table.”

    … the Centstar that you’re taking to basically remove 90% of enemy units in short order. 🙂

    • Avatar
      CaptainA January 11, 2016 10:13 am #

      I’m a special flower!

      In all seriousness or lack therof, I guess the main point is that no matter what you bring, there will be bad counters to it and you should be thinking about what to do when you see those things across the table.

  15. John Lennon
    jifel January 11, 2016 10:14 am #

    Ok, let’s see… I hate seeing a stormsurge across the table from me.
    Even worse is two Stormsurges.
    I hate seeing skyrays across the table.
    Really really hate warp spiders (although ITC helps with their stupid jumping)
    And I hate seeing multiple centurion squads. I’m fine with deathstars, but 3×3 Grav cents is just ugly.

  16. Avatar
    Ryan January 11, 2016 1:16 pm #

    So you don’t like picking up models from a 6 on the stomp table but you think your opponent likes playing against 25 ignore cover grav wounds?

    How is that better?

    • Avatar
      CaptainA January 12, 2016 2:08 pm #

      Like is a very relative word that I’m using tongue in cheek. Having played in the ITC for awhile and against some extremely good players, I know I need a list advantage for me in some cases as I don’t consider myself a top tier player. I’ve come to accept any list that comes my way and see all of these things as puzzles or nuts to crack as it were.

    • Avatar
      CaptainA January 12, 2016 2:09 pm #

      And the most I can do is 15 Ignore cover grav wounds, cmon 25, that’d be OP. 🙂

  17. Avatar
    Kuro Sogekihei January 11, 2016 7:17 pm #

    As a 5x Knight player, I’m unfortunately used to most of my games falling under the hard counter category.

    Ranged D weapons are the bane of my existence.

    Units that can outpace me.

    Melee units that swing at or above Int 4.

    Flyer spam…

    3 out of 4 are generally what I see with Eldar, so those are almost always bad games for me. :p

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