Monday, August 29, 2011

Blog Wars 2 - Scenarios and Ticket News

Firstly, just to say that Blog Wars 2 tickets will hopefully be available at the end of September. This is because the venue is changing the way they do catering and I want to get a firm price from them before I try and budget for the event and decide on a ticket cost. I'm hoping it'll be the same as June at £15 but the food should be a smaller proportion of that so there should be more cash available for prizes and general improvements to the tournament itself. Like last time I don't intend to make a single penny from Blog Wars and all the proceeds will be shared out in the prize pot once the food has been paid for. There's nothing worse than going to a tournament and shelling out for a ticket only to get a certificate for your efforts (are you listening GW?). Anyway, more details will be available towards the end of next month but for now I want to talk about the scenarios so you guys can play test them if you so desire.

As I've mentioned in previous posts Blog Wars 2 is going to be different (and hopefully better) than the last. Therefore, Matt and I have come up with some slight variations on the usual 40K scenarios to try to highlight the importance of the special character in your Blog Wars list. Last time around everyone had an SC but it varied whether you'd got them as a key part of your army philosophy or if you'd tacked them onto an already tried and tested tournament list. We want to encourage people to embrace the spirit of the tournament by centering their lists around a special character and choosing their units with them in mind. Please remember that I'm always looking for feedback and suggestions for any aspect of the tournament and the scenarios are no exception. If you test them out and find their too biassed towards army X or punish army Y too much then let me know and I'll try and address it.

We wanted a bit of a narrative campaign feel to the games so the missions will follow a sequence based on a very loose story. Whether you like that sort of thing or not doesn't really matter because the missions are pretty simple. It's there if you like it but if you don't just roll the dice!

Last time around we had modest numbers of attendees which meant we had quite a few clashes where people had already played. This time I'm introducing a slightly different scoring system where degrees of victory are more important (there won't be any soft scoring though). This should hopefully balance things out between different armies. For example, an army with very few units will naturally do well in kill point games so they're likely to win by a large margin. However, victory points will also be taken into account so this should go some way to levelling the playing field. I've seen this work out nicely at other tournaments and it means that it's always worth trying to hammer your opponent rather than just getting sneaky objectives at the end. Unless stated all of the missions have a standard 5-7 turn game length and allow infiltrators, reserves, deep strikes, etc.

Scenario 1 -  Halt the Advance
As the invaders make ground towards the defenders main settlements a force is sent out to intercept them and halt their advance. Their forward scouts report that the enemy commander is present in a force in this sector. If they can remove him from the equation the invasion will struggle to maintain its pace.
This mission is essentially an Annihilation battle played on Spearhead deployment from the normal rulebook but with the exception that each force's "Commander" (who will be a special character nominated by each general) is worth 3 KPs if they die. All other units (including any bodyguard) will be worth 1 KP each as normal. This could mean the difference between victory and defeat but you will still be rewarded for decimating your opponent's force. The secondary objective will be VPs with the tournament points broken down as follows:

5 TPs for having 5+ KPs more than your opponent
3 TPs for having 3-4 KPs more than your opponent
1 TP for having 1-2 KPs more than your opponent
5 TPs for having 1500+ VPs more than your opponent
3 TPs for having 1000-1499 VPs more than your opponent
1 TPs for having 500-999 VPs more than your opponent

Therefore a very narrow victory might result in 2 TPs for the winner (and nothing for the loser) whereas a tabling will give a maximum of 10 TPs.

Scenario 2 - Push the Advantage
With the enemy commander slain, the invaders try to consolidate their position by eliminating their enemy from the entire sector. By doing so they can secure an area to base their final assault on the enemy's headquarters. The commanders of each force are determined not to let their opposite number get the upper hand.
This mission borrows from the Cleanse scenario from the 4th Edition rulebook. The deployment will be Pitched Battle from the current book. Instead of objectives the table is divided into quarters with a point for each quarter that is held by a scoring unit and contains no enemy units. In this mission the special character on each side counts as a scoring unit. Otherwise it's the usual rules for scoring units from the 5th Ed book. The secondary objective will be VPs with the tournament points broken down as follows:

5 TPs for controlling all four table quarters
3 TPs for controlling 2 table quarters more than your opponent
1 TP for controlling 1 table quarter more than your opponent
5 TPs for having 1500+ VPs more than your opponent
3 TPs for having 1000-1499 VPs more than your opponent
1 TP for having 500-999 VPs more than your opponent

Scenario 3 - Final Assault
Having crushed the enemy resistance only one thing stands between the invader and total domination of the planet. The enemy's final stronghold and their supreme commander will be defended to the last man but buoyed by their previous triumphs the invaders are confident of victory.
Coming into the final game the player of the two with the most TPs (or failing that VPs) will get to choose whether to be the attacker or defender. The defender has a central main objective (3 points each) and four minor objectives (1 point each). The main objective must be placed in the table centre with the other four objectives anywhere on a 12" circle around the main objective (provided they are not within 9" of another objective). The defender sets up anywhere within an area 18" by 24" in the centre of the board. The attacker goes first and can bring anything upto his entire army on in the first turn. The defender's army will be Fearless until their commander falls whereas the attackers will gain Fearless at this point. All units on both sides retreat to the nearest board edge. Obviously the winner is the one controlling the most objectives at the end of the game, again VPs are the secondary objective (but with less importance) with the tournament points broken down as follows:

5 TPs for controlling 3+ more objectives than your opponent
3 TPs for controlling 2 more objectives than your opponent
1 TP for controlling 1 more objective than your opponent
5 TPs for having 1500+ VPs more than your opponent
3 TPs for having 1000-1499 VPs more than your opponent
1 TP for having 500-999 VPs more than your opponent

These are the three scenarios that will be played at Blog Wars 2 in the order given here. I'd be very grateful if people could playtest the hell out of them to see if there's anything I've not thought of. Obviously I don't want to penalise one army more than another but inevitably there will be an element of it. It should be a challenge to build a list that's capable of doing well in all three scenarios. For example, a mobile army that does well in scenario two might have difficulty as the defender in scenario 3. As you will notice you can still gain tournament points if you lose but kill more. However, otherwise there are no points for a draw or a loss so everyone needs to play for the win.

Now I appreciate the first two aren't really breaking any new ground or anything but if you can think of some reason why any of the three aren't suitable please let me know so I can rectify it asap. The main one to playtest is scenario 3 but hopefully people will try out all 3. We'll certainly be testing them out a lot between now and December so if I find any problems I'll address them.

Looking forward to seeing what people can put together for these missions. Finally, I might run a competition to design the Blog Wars 2 logo and offer some suitable prize for the best. Perhaps a free ticket to the event or something. More details of that to follow.


  1. you know i was originally not a fan of the whole SC thing, but the event was so much fun that i saw the light, as it were. these scenarios really are brilliantly thought out in their simplicity and narrative approach, and i support them wholeheartedly.

    the only problem i forsee is in the the first scenario. squishy support characters (for example chenkov), are going to suffer horribly against massive beatsticks like draigo. not sure what you can really change there other than making an individual KP cost for every character, but it just doesnt seem that fair to me (but then, KPs are inherantly unfair, and are ballanced here by the VP objective).

  2. I like what you have done and sound's good. I think it will work well.

    Could you count me in with my Praetorian IV Coy please, as for some reason I am unable to send you an e-mail. Thanks.

  3. Liking the idea of tailored missions, I'll see if I can persuade anyone at the Local to try out a few to see how they play.

    I'm looking to bring along my Necrons for something a bit different, what will be the procedure assuming they get a codex just before the tournament, will I be using the old one that everyone is familiar with?

  4. sod that Andy, use the new one, it will be great to play against it!

  5. I'll wait and see what the general consensus is, I don't mind using whatever folk want.

    I'm sure there'll be plenty of internet-hate about the new codex no matter what it's like, either way, it'll be a bit of a laugh :D

  6. Sign me up, I can make it this time round.

  7. hey fella - its gary here from 40kuk

    Looks like me and dave will be up for this is decemer. Put us down on the list

    gary@40kuk or david@40kuk if you need to get hold of us

    See you there!!!


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