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ICFOOTB 2013 Coverage and Commentary

The 2013 edition of the It Came From Out of the Basement tournament was completed over the weekend. This two day, five game event saw perennial contender Jordan Murphy once again top the 40k standings. I believe Kieren Trimbee and his Bretonnian army won Best Overall for Fantasy, which is also not a surprise since he always does very well with them, and Darren Perra won for Warmahordes with Menoth. Congrats, guys!

The horde of gamers.

The horde of gamers doing their thing.

Perhaps most importantly, the event generated more than 1,000 lbs of food for the Food Bank. That’s a lot of canned beans…

I’m going to go ahead and snag some commentary from Jordan, who also guest-wrote the handy pre-tournament guide you may have seen a few weeks back. The paragraphs in Italics below are his 🙂

JM: I had a great time playing against all my opponents. I played against Forgeworld-heavy Eldar/IG, Tau, Necrons, Tau/Eldar, and Forgeworld IG. For those of you curious about the list, at 1850 I took:

Kairos Fateweaver

Great Unclean One

-Greater Gift, Exalted Gift, L3 psyker

CSM Daemon Prince

-Nurgle, Wings, Armour, Black Mace

3x 10 Plaguebearers

10 Cultists

-Flamer

2x Daemon Prince

-Nurgle, Wings, Armour, 2x Greater Gifts, L3 Psyker

I really had only played against Mr. Stephen Lind (trying out many variations of the Wraith themed Eldar) going into the tournament, so I had the vaguest ideas of how I needed to play against everyone else. There were lots of scary moments. My game against Riley’s Necrons went sour really quick, losing big fatty (GUO) and two Princes within a turn. However, my last Prince put the team on his shoulders and racked up the kill point tally on his own to take the win. And against David, I deployed straight across from his Tau army while knowing that I would be going second. I paid for it big time but the mission bailed me out — the little floating objective stayed on my side so I could build a points lead as I tried not to die to horrendous Tau firepower.

The games were an exercise of grinding out wins. 3 of the 5 could’ve gone either way. Lots of learning experiences.

In the end, a skilled general like Jordan at the controls of a hybrid Chaos list proved too much for these guys to handle; Kairos and his gaggle of flying Daemon Princes are truly a force to be reckoned with. Even if you can get lucky (or capitalize on a mistake or two) and bring down a couple of the big guys early, that doesn’t guarantee a victory. It’s terrifying to think of what Jordan will do now that he’s faced more than just Eldar with his new Daemons… I guess we’ll find out at the Alberta Wargaming GT finals next month!

Best Overall Rankings (40k)

1. Chaos Daemons / Chaos Space Marines

2. Imperial Guard

T3. Tau / Eldar

T3. Grey Knights

T3. Necrons

6. Tau

7. Chaos Daemons

8. Necrons

9. Tyranids

10. Unknown in the official standings (best guess by process of elimination, it had to be either Ravenwing or Space Wolves unless some people changed armies at the last minute)

Note: some of the armies outside the top 5 probably had allies, but they aren’t recorded in the results so I have no idea!

Looking at the rankings, you see a lot more Xenos than you would have in previous years. Gone are the days when the tournament scene was a sea of power armor (counts-as or otherwise). In terms of primary detachments the event saw nine Tau (so many Riptides…), four Necrons, three Daemons, three Tyranids, three Orks, three Imperial Guard, two Eldar, two Dark Eldar, one Chaos Space Marines, one Space Wolves, one Dark Angels and one Grey Knights.

JM: It’s safe for me to say that this tournament had the toughest list spread. There were triple Drakes, Sabre platform guard, Warp Hunter/Nightwing Eldar, mechrons, armoured company guard, flying circus Daemons and a proliferation of Tau lists that would’ve given me a hard time.

For Space Marines though, there were a couple of allied contingents but not a lot else. The Dark Angels player had Ravenwing, and Geoff’s Grey Knights had Coteaz and Henchmen for most of the scoring duty.

While I don’t look forward to uber-Dreadnoughts and Terminators on steroids (that shit ain’t canonical, yo), the new book has to do something to make Marines more 6th edition friendly. 170+ point jack of all trades Tactical Squads just don’t compare to what other armies are bringing for scoring options (usually much cheaper, and with a few big strengths to make up for any minor weaknesses they might have). Without any true chaff or true elite units that can get bumped to Troops, they are kinda stuck in no man’s land without a role to excel at and build a strategy around.

JM: Tau seem to have replaced Marines as the dominant 40k faction. Could be bandwagon syndrome, but I didn’t see the Eldar numbers I thought I would show up for that same reason. I’m gonna reserve judgement on the death of the Marine after their codex comes out. I doubt it’ll be the case but I think their glory days are behind them.

From what I saw walking around the tables, IG seemed to use a decent amount of Forgeworld (Sabre platforms are stupid good) as did the Eldar (Nightwing is a good (and cheap!) alternative to the Crimson Hunter, and Warp Hunters are very flexible tanks that can either shoot a 5″ D-cannon barrage or fling out a Torrent flame template in the same manner as a Night Spinner). Not sure if anyone else was making much use of their Forgeworld options, but I still feel that they add value and flexibility to some of the armies that haven’t seen Codex love in a long while. I know my Vanilla marine lists would have no fun without a Contemptor Mortis for at least some anti-air dakka!

JM: The Forgeworld is something I know most competitive people who don’t play Imperials or Eldar lament. Most of it comes from a lack of experience of playing the stuff. At any given time I can set up a game with all of the tough codex builds but Forgeworld opponents are few and far between and their rules are even less accessible. Play it once or twice and you’ll know what to do.

I agree that Forgeworld can be a bit of surprise if you don’t know what you’re facing, but the same can be said for players bringing a new codex, or just a build that you don’t own or play against very often. I couldn’t tell you what half the Xenos wargear does, while I could recite just about any Imperial codex from 3rd to 6th edition by memory (only slightly exaggerating). At the end of the day, most Forgeworld units are fairly tame. Some are probably a bit too cheap for their effectiveness, but you can say the same about something in literally every Codex as it is.

Anyway, most of the stuff is fairly well-known if you do a bit of searching around forums. Failing that, maybe ask to glance at your opponent’s rules while he deploys his army.

There shouldn’t be too many surprises, although you might run into the odd situation where someone is using out of date rules. Forgeworld has a bit of a nasty habit of tweaking and changing certain entries like the Contemptor every time they are included in a supplement… a fully updated Imperial Armor Volume 2 reprint (like the Imperial Guard got with IA1, and more recently Tau with IA3) would really help clean things up for Marines especially. I fully expect a reprint when the new Space Marine Codex drops!

Any final thoughts from the champ?

JM: The mission set up was pretty enjoyable for the most part, I enjoyed all the primaries but the secondaries needed some work. They should always be attainable, which wasn’t the case here (i.e., kill points for Flyers only… what do you do if just one or neither player has Flyers?). The system they designed was better suited for a pure W/L/D format. Draws generally meant you got zero points + First blood, Warlord and/or Linebreaker.

I‘m also not a fan of the Best General system they have. Acts of Valour are hardly indicative of who the best general was, more who the most ignorant of the objective is. Call me boring, but the best general is whoever won the most games or scored the most battle points. Period. IMO the reason they brought in the Acts of Valour was to work in a comp system that wasn’t obvious. However it appears that people will bring whatever they want to play regardless of comp.

From what I saw everyone seemed to enjoy their games so its clear to me that comp isn’t needed, and they can be more adventurous with different awards and missions and not worry so much about balance, which is as close as it’s going to get. Just to get back to the missions, the primaries were spot on. Mostly right out of the book with a little flair of some kind to spice it up. Perfect — just enough to bring gamers out of their comfort zone with their armies.

Otherwise an excellently run event with no hiccups to us. Great job, OOTB!

Many thanks to Mr. Murphy for letting me pick his brain once again. I might do the same for some of the Warmachine/Fantasy players at the event. I am friends with most of the trophy winners, which helps make tracking them down easier!

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One comment on “ICFOOTB 2013 Coverage and Commentary

  1. Jeez, does every Chaos Daemon player use the same dang list in tournaments now? Yes, I know its an effective list, but show some originality. I don’t think I’ve seen any major deviations from this list in the last 3 months.

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