Monday, November 30, 2009

WFB Hobby: Coming Out of Semi-Retirement

Over the last two years my tournament WFB armies have been pretty much retired. They would come out from time to time to play friends or help folks out in tuning their forces up, but I have really not had much of an interest in playing tournament games with them. Mind you some of this is due to some absolutely horrendous sportsmanship at the first WFB ‘ard Boyz. Well, Minus 67 has talked me into pulling my oldest army out of retirement, which is now 20 years old. It is the one army I own that has the best chance of being competitive in the Daemon/Vampire dominated tournament scene, and one of the few armies that consistently shows up in the top ten rankings. That army is the Empire.

My Empire army is a multi-generational army that was started on the tail end of 3rd start of 4th edition. Its main core of troops was initially built using the figures found in the GW-Milton Bradley Game called Battlemaster. Many of those figures are still in my army, and yes they are absolutely tournament legal because they were made by GW. In 6th edition my army got its first real face lift with the figures that came out with the boxed set. Then in 7th edition, after the recent army book, I got the battalion box with the new style troops.

I’m sure that by now many of you are wondering what all of this rambling is about and I assure you that I have a point. I’m going to write a series of hobby articles revolving around rehabilitating this old army for tournament play. I will also discuss some of my thought processes behind unit selection and tactics. Overall, I will be focusing more on the hobby aspect of all of this because that is what I enjoy the most, and it will give me a framework for the hobby articles I have thought about writing.

I’ve designed a preliminary army. The build had a few main goals. They were: 1. Use what I have. 2. Make something fun to play and play against. 3. Make sure it has a chance to perform well. 4. Leave room for improvement.

With that in mind I designed the following list. It is far from perfect, but it looks interesting and should put up a decent fight.

Empire Army List

Arch Lector Of Sigmar on War Altar x1 w/ Wyrmslayer Sword, Armor Metoric Iron, Van Horstman's Speculum; 295pts
3x Battle Wizard Level 2 w/ Dispel Scroll x2; 450pts
Knights Blazing Sun x10 w/Full Command, Steel Standard; 290pts
Halberdiers x30 w/ Full Command; 170pts
Spearmen x30 w/ Full Command; 170pts
Crossbowmen x20 w/ Full Command; 180pts
2x Handgunners x10 w/ Marksman, Hochland Long Rifle; 210pts
Great Cannon x3; 300pts
Mortar x1; 75pts
Hellblaster Volley Gun x1; 110pts

Total: 2250pts 134 Models 8PD/7DD

The goal with this build is for the big units to act as meat shields for the casters. The Arch Lector is for general beat down, and I think it is pretty self-evident what the shooters are for. I realize that I spammed my artillery and casters, but I think that is a small matter. My greatest strength is guessing range, and I have enjoyed a lot of success with the big guns. Nothing brings a wider smile to my face than when my opponent walks into the mouth of the Hellblaster, or when my opponent thinks my ranges are off only to find that they have been hit by three cannons and a mortar.

I will be looking at ways to add a Steam Tank into this army. I may also look at some alternative builds, but for now it looks like I have a good starting point.

In my next installment I will face my shame publicly by producing the Portrait of Shame, or as I call it, “What I should’ve finished painting ages ago.” I will examine what exactly I will need to do to get this force fully painted and on the table. I will discuss how I will plan this all out, and I will look at what will need to get its paint stripped and what can just remain as is.

All right readers your turn! Have at my build. Also let me know what major army plans you are looking at for the 2010-2011 Tournament Season.



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