Rolling Thunder Vehicle Painting/Converting Contest

HobbytownUSA Dallas has begun a new contest designed to encourage modelers to stretch their vehicle model building, painting and especially converting skills: Rolling Thunder. Running now through December 20, 2008, new gaming specialist Jason will assist hobbyists with reaching a new level of modeling accomplishment in the Warhammer 40K tank of their choice. Jason says vehicle conversions are his favorite part of the hobby, and he looks forward to showing modelers how to use assets a full-line hobby shop like HobbytownUSA Dallas provides&mash;things like plasticard, detail parts, regular scale kits for bashing, etc—to turn their Games Workshop vehicle into something special. He also says thinking outside the box is encouraged for the Rolling Thunder event (up to and including interesting diorama bases)—so long as the result remains credibly a part of the 41st Millennium background of the hobby!

Models much be turned in by Thursday, December 18, 2008, where they will be formally judged—but will remain on display at HTUD through Saturday, December 20, 2008, so that every participant in the Rolling Thunder event can vote, as well! Prizes of Games Workshop product will be awarded, and participants of course get to keep their models for use in future 40K and Apocalypse events (so superheavies ARE legal!).

See Jason at HTUD for details!

Results: 40K Rogue Trader Tournament Sat, Nov 15

  • Overall Champion: Bob Westbrook, Tau
  • Best Sportsman: Adam Gipson, Daemons
  • Best Army: Gerald MacNamara, Imperial Guard
  • Best General: David Caldwell, Daemonhunters
  • Murphy's Luck: Ray Mullins, Imperial Guard

Congratulations to the winners and thank you for your participation and support.

40K Rogue Trader Tournament Sat, Nov 15

Planet Hobbies Dallas (map), will celebrate their opening with a three-round, 1500-point Rogue Trader Tournament for Warhammer 40,000 on Saturday, November 15, 2008!

The Tournament begins at 10am for army list submission, table and opponent assignments; Round One will be 10:30am - 12:30pm, Lunch 12:30pm- 1:15pm, Round Two 1:15pm - 3:15pm, Break 3:15pm - 3:30pm and Round Three 3:30pm - 5:30pm, with the Award Ceremony following final score tabulation at around 6pm.

RTTs are official Games Workshop events, with scoring for -- and trophies and prizes for -- all aspects of the Hobby: generalship, sportsmanship, painting and appearance, and the best overall combination of excellence in them all.

The RTT at Planet Hobbies Dallas (map) is limited to 16 participants; tickets are on sale at Planet Hobbies with a discount for game club members, or at the door on Saturday if any slots remain. All participants *MUST* have a printed, legible and accurate Army List for the Judges; additional lists for the participant's use and for each of three opponents are recommended.

North Texas hobbyists have asked for an official GW RTT for years; Planet Hobbies new facility finally allows for one. Hobbyists have hoped for the return of an official GW GT to Dallas, as well; the first step is proving the region can support RTTs. Call PH at (972) 380-8900 for details or see the event listing in White Dwarf!

Results: Lucky 13's Megabattle 6: Day Two!

The battle for the chaos arcano-engine erupting through the surface of Bonner's Reach continued all across the planet--including downstream from the epic struggle won previously by the Mordant 13th Imperial Guard and their allies. This final struggle was smaller in scope, but no less critical--and so was left to the Space Marines, Imperial masters of the fast surgical strike, to seize: a potent alliance of Space Wolves, Jade Legion, Void Phantoms and Grey Knights!

The opposition mustered against them the full force of greenskin infantry--Ghazghkull Mag Uruk Thrakka, Warboss Big Killy, Mad Doc Grotsnik, a Green Tide of over 120 Nobs and Boyz and a Stompa-led Dread Mob, Gilyazza's Goregashas, along with Khornate Daemons and Traitor Space Marines and several waves of Genestealers. Disorder also brought a Traitor Baneblade and an Ork Skullhamma to this final conflict--giving them the edge in both numbers and superheavies!

Momentum in this second battle shifted back and forth: the Allies took four of the five objectives early, by the end of Turn One...but Disorder threw them off the two on the furthest flanks by the end of Turn Two, and the Chaos Vindicator Linebreaker Squadron obliterated the central objective, as well, to draw things even again. The third Turn proved decisive: Space Wolf Scouts destroyed first the Baneblade then the Skullhamma with meltabomb attacks, allowing a Grey Knight Brother Captain and his bodyguard of terminators to seize the objective the superheavies had been protecting in Disorder's own zone, and veteran Grey Hunters worked their way amongst the Chaos elements on the left flank--a Soulgrinder, a sorceror and terminator warband, obliterators and a Defiler--to retake that objective and hunker down, never again to be shaken off it. The Stompa ran wild down the opposite flank, but its mightiest efforts to either destroy the objective in the Allied home zone, or failing that to blow the claiming Eldar allies and Jade Legion Scouts off of it, came up short.

In the end, though the Green Tide--which waaaghed the length of the battlefield, despite the most heroic efforts of various Imperial heroes to hold them up in combat--managed to claim that flank objective for Disorder, the others were retained by Allied control (including their home zone objective, which they had used a Strategic Asset to declare Vital, and thus worth two objective points), for a 4 objective to 1 Imperial and Eldar victory! Following up on the great Allied win further upstream previously, the climactic weekend of the Lucky 13s campaign went decisively for the Imperium!

Kudos to Disorder players Mason, Alex, Blake, David and Warboss Avery, and congratulations to Order players Josh, Paul, Kyle and Great Wolf Eric for a memorable grand finale to the year-long campaign. Award of merit for outstanding units was clear on both sides, and fittingly they were controlled by each side's force commander: nothing could stop the rampage of Avery's Stompa except time, and Eric's Wolf Scouts accounted for over 20% of the opposing points' worth of models by themselves (though Alex's genestealers eventually avenged themselves upon them). Mason's Ork characters also acquitted themselves well, accounting for overall Allied Commander Wolf Lord Emryk, Void Phantoms Chief Librarian Lord Liche and several Rune Priests...then had their rampage halted in hand-to-hand combat by radical Ordo Xenos Inquisitor Rhadamanthus Goh, no less, in the final turn. Fittingly, it was an final Apocalypse battle dominated not by spectacular formations and towering superheavies, as wonderful as those are...but rather was decided by the deeds of rank-and-file troopers, and the courage of individual heroes taking a stand.

And with the Space Marine strike force decisively securing this final battlehead, to protect the flank of the Mordant 13th and the main Allied army further upstream, the Imperium--in this sector of Bonner's Reach, at least--has definitively denied to the archenemy access and control of the subsurface chaos arcano-engine. The yearlong struggle of the Lucky 13s, which has spanned much of known space and flung them against every enemy known to Man, has come to an end...with the Mordant 13th Imperial Guard still victorious...still standing fast.

Results: Lucky 13's Megabattle 6: Day One!

The chaos arcano-engine buried for millennia beneath the surface of Bonner's Reach has erupted, felling mountains and diverting rivers...and armies now meet in final apocalyptic battle to attempt to control it.

On the first front, a plaguelord of Nurgle called upon representatives of Khorne, Slaanesh and Tzeentch and a great Waagh of Orks to take the field against a united Imperium and Eldar allegiance. A Plague Tower of Nurgle, a Tzeentch-Baneblade Tank of Change, a Tzeentch Traitor Warhound Titan, the Avatar of Khorne and an Ork Mekboy Stompa Titan clashed with three Eldar Revenant Titans, three Baneblades, an Eldar superheavy Tempest, an Imperial Warhound Titan and an Imperial Reaver Titan over five key objectives--two pieces of arcano-engine machinery which regenerated damaged war engines nearby, two chaos reactors which intensified and channelled the ambient psychic energy, and an Imperial shrine imbued with supernatural power as it resisted the Chaos takeover.

Led by Apocalypse formations such as the Host of the Daemon Forge and the Dethkopta Choppa Squadron, Chaos attacked aggressively, seizing four of the five objectives in their first turn. The Imperium rallied by doing what they do best--shooting one of them (the shrine, which became defiled by the daemonic presences occupying it) into oblivion. Imperial Space Marines led by the appearance of a mysterious librarian swept the Thousand Sons from one of the reactors in Turn Two, to draw the claimed objectives even, and in the final turn Eldar psykers skimmed in to claim the other, then a Revenant blasted the first from existence when terminators of Tzeentch tried to reclaim it. Despite both sides' spectacular final attempts to wrest each remaining objective in the opposing deployment zone from their enemy, the defending Stompa on one side and the Reaver on the other proved proof against any shot or assault they could muster...and the first day ended an Imperial victory by the slimmest of margins, 2-1.

There were magnificent moments on both sides: the back-and-forth over one objective between Thousand Sons, Chaos Terminators, plague marines and a Keeper of Secrets and first the Eldar court of the young king and then the space marines kept the final result in doubt until the Revenant took action and obliterated the objective itself--and them all--entirely; the Plague Tower in the center of the Disorder line taking round-after-round, seemingly interminably--then blowing the whole center of the table clear when at last it went down; the Avatar of Khorne surviving everything the Imperium and Eldar could throw at it through an entire turn of shooting on its final wound, then trading blows with the Reaver--only to fall to Mordant 13th Colonel Jago Kallowen and the High Command itself, charging to the great Titan's rescue; the Reaver 'cleansing' the corrupted Imperial shrine--and the daemons upon it--with six consecutive ordnance barrages; and the heroic performance of the 'bullet sponges,' the rank-and-file lowly Imperial Guardsmen, whose aim was pretty horrifically bad throughout the entire battle, but whose heroism, in never faltering as Chaos/Orks came on, holding up first dethkoptas, then Soulgrinders, then bloodletters, then juggernauts, then spawn in close combat, sufficiently slowed the initial Disorder advance to allow the Allies their last-round recovery. Kudos to them--especially Lt 'Baldy,' who grew so frustrated with their outrageously incompetent shooting that he charged a sixteen-strong unit of bloodletters with herald singlehandedly, in his towering rage: his death spurred (or perhaps shamed) the survivors to a heroism which insured their victory...

Thanks go out to Disorder players Aaron, Ashley, Chris and Gama, and Order players Matt, Jack, Paul and especially Ray, the Guardsman, who stepped in when the final scheduled Allied player failed to show, or call, or anything else; all were models of sporting attitude and exemplars of the Apocalypse maximum of having a good time and telling a good story first, and we couldn't have gotten through three turns with well over 30,000 points on the table in under eight hours without them. Kudos...today's event is what Apocalypse is supposed to be about.

And with the Mordant 13th securing this crucial battlehead for the Imperium, the yearlong struggle for Bonner's Reach, the chaos arcano-engine beneath it, and the Fate of the Lucky 13s enters its final stage tomorrow, with a decided advantage for the Allies.

Stand Fast, Lucky 13s!

Stand Fast Lucky 13s! Apocalypse Campaign Megabattle 6 (Nov 7 & 8)

The Mordant 13th and their Imperial Guard, Inquisition and Space Marine allies have campaigned across the galaxy, for an entire year: now, it all climaxes with the final Apocalypse Megabattle--occupying two full days in North Texas, at HobbytownUSA Dallas!

On Friday, November 7th, 2008, seven players mustering over 30,000 combined points worth of Imperium and Eldar versus Chaos and Orks will clash, from Noon to 8pm; on Saturday, November 8th, 2008, thirteen players, pitting Order against Disorder, will take the field from 10am until close, their objectives influenced by the battle the day before, to decide final control over the mystery for which they have all struggled--a massive, ancient Chaos engine, buried beneath the mantle of the world, which has begun erupting to the surface as a result of the campaign!

The following are North Texas-campaign specific alterations to the general Megabattle Scenario 6: Stand Fast!

  • BATTLE MAP: The lengthwise layout illustrated on the GW scenario map has not proven ideal to the logistical environment at the HTUD Game Hall, and will likely be altered, but the general disposition--of two triangular deployments separated by an angled, corner-to-corner No Mans Land--will hold.
  • MUSTERING FORCES: Players may sign up for any available slot in person at HobbytownUSA Dallas. The slots will indicate the force type and points to be fielded. All participants are *required* to provide a complete, legible and accurate army list of their force on the day of the game--which means, write it up beforehand, don't try to scribble it out as you play. Superheavies, Datasheet formations and anything else especially Apocalyptic are encouraged; painted models should be given preference. You may include units detailed in any Codex, Approved White Dwarf Article, Imperial Armor Book or Datasheet, but must have a copy of the rules for each unit you intend to field. Each player may choose one Strategic Asset, at no additional points cost.
  • SCENARIO RULES: This Scenario follows all of the rules detailed on page 17 of the Apocalypse book with the following additions and amendments. Note that this scenario is written with the 5th edition Warhammer 40,000 in mind.
  • SETUP: Both sides will elect a Force Commander, who will roll a D6. The side which rolls highest may choose which side they will deploy in. There will be clearly indicated Objectives, potentially in both Deployment zones and certainly in No Mans Land. These will represent manifestations on the surface of the Chaos arcano-engine buried beneath, or corruptions of vulnerable surface sites responding thereto. The side which controls the most such Objectives at the end of each game is declared the megabattle winner.
  • FIRST TURN: Sides will bid for First Turn as per normal Apocalypse rules in the Friday game. First turn for Saturday's game may be influenced or even determined by the result of Friday's action.
  • EXPOSED ARCANE RUINS: The Chaos arcano-engine under the ground acts as a bridge to the raw power of the Warp and amplifies the power of psychic abilities--at times to an uncontrollable degree. Models denoted as Psykers *who are in physical contact with* any of these designated Objectives may cast an additional psychic power each turn, which may be one cast previously. However, powers used above and beyond the model's norm *will provoke a Perils of The Warp test on the roll of any double.* Daemonic units entering play from reserves or arriving via Deep Strike will not scatter if brought into play within 6” of an Objective. Objectives count as Chaos Icons for the purposes of summoning daemons.
  • A BATTLE OF THE MIND: This battle is fought with more than courage and weaponry. The psychic binding of the stone and mental control of the ruins’ link to the unparalleled power of the Warp is of paramount importance in this battle. To reflect this, *any model with the Psyker special rule counts as a scoring unit in this scenario,* even if they are an Independent Character. Units of Psykers (i.e. Seer Councils, etc.) count collectively as a single scoring unit unless they can legally be broken out of the unit (i.e. Warlocks joining Guardian squads). Troops units *still* count as scoring units, and any other unit type can still contest an Objective held by Troops units--but *only Psyker units can contest objectives held by other Psykers.* Compile your army lists accordingly.

The Friday game will begin at Noon, so players are encouraged to eat a healthy lunch beforehand; no formal break will occur until action is completed. The Saturday game will begin at 10am, so players are encouraged to bring their lunch, or participate in a mass order for take-out pizza, as has been done in past megabattles.

2008 has seen nearly two-dozen Apocalypse Lucky 13s events held at HTUD in celebration of the galaxy-spanning campaign. Great heroes--and villains (and a character or two who is considered either, depending upon whom you talk to!)--have risen to the fore; momentous combats have been launched, and many great moments of memory preserved for the telling of future tales. It will all resolve the weekend of Nov 7th and 8th, when over a score of participants and in excess of 50,000 total points clash for battlefield supremacy. Be a part of the grand finale of the Lucky 13s!

Results: 'Ard Boyz North Texas Regional

27 players from three states met at the new Planet Hobbies in Dallas for one of the approximately two dozen second round Ard Boyz Regional semi-finals Oct 11th, with the top three finalists advancing to the National Championships in Baltimore in November.

  1. *National Finalist* Jay Kolar - Chaos Daemons: 56 Points (2-1)
  2. *National Finalist* Eric Smelley - Dark Eldar: 55 Points (2-1)
  3. *National Finalist* Michael Strange - Necrons: 53 Points (3-0)
  4. Bob Westbrook - Tau: 49 Points (2-0-1)
  5. Kendall Parks - Chaos Daemons: 46 Points (2-0-1)
  6. Mike Scott - Black Templars: 46 Points (2-1)
  7. Robert Adair - Space Wolves: 44 Points (2-1)
  8. Jonathan Loyd - Tyranids: 41 Points (1-0-2)
  9. Bill Gordon - Black Templars: 39 Points (1-0-2)
  10. Rich Briggs - Tau: 38 Points (2-1)
  11. Simonnold Wescott - Black Templars: 37 Points (1-1-1)
  12. David Caldwell - Tyranids: 34 Points (0-1-2)
  13. Michael Sanford - Chaos Space Marines: 32 Points (2-1)
  14. Adam Brown - Orks: 31 Points (1-1-1)
  15. Jon Hoffman - Chaos Space Marines: 29 Points (2-1)
  16. Donnie Rose - Imperial Guard Armoured Company: 29 Points (0-1-2)
  17. Chad Jones - Imperial Guard/Inquisition: 29 Points (1-2)
  18. Dax Hamon - Chaos Space Marines: 27 Points (1-1-1)
  19. Chris Williams - Dark Angels: 27 Points (1-2)
  20. Adam Gipson - Chaos Daemons: 25 Points (0-2-1)
  21. Helio Rosenthal - Dark Angels: 25 Points (1-2)
  22. Caleb Gordon - Orks: 22 Points (1-2)
  23. Jeff Whitehead - Eldar: 21 Points (0-1-2)
  24. Douglas Dyson - Blood Angels: 18 Points (0-2-1)
  25. Dean Chase - Blood Angels: 16 Points (1-2)
  26. *Incomplete data*
  27. *Incomplete data*

Third place collected a Games Workshop unit or vehicle boxed set, second place a Games Workshop battalion or battleforce boxed set--and the first place winner will receive a brand new 2,500 point army of his choice (Jay selected Witch Hunters!); thanks to Planet Hobbies and Games Workshop for sponsoring the tournament and prizes, and congratulations to all participants and their retailers for another successful event!

Ard Boyz Regional North Texas Information

HobbyAnnex has closed its Preston/Campbell location but the Ard Boyz Regional Tournament scheduled for October 11th, 2008 there WILL BE HELD at 19129 Preston Road 130, Dallas TX 75252, just north of HobbyAnnex's previous location, and just south of the George W Bush Freeway. This is the site of the new Planet Hobbies retail store. It will still be under-construction at that address but WILL be sufficiently finished out to host the Regional Ard Boyz tournament, its management assures Games Workshop and its representatives.

The phone number remains the same: 972 380-8900.

The North Texas Ard Boyz Regional Tournament will begin at 10am. Players should be there with their army lists ready to turn in immediately the doors open, so Round One table assignments can be made. Players who arrive late may forfeit their opportunity to participate.

Results: Lucky 13's Megabattle 5: Why Would They...?

As battle raged across the tomb world of Glavinus 5/7 between the Imperium and the Tau, with Necrons being awakened all across the forbidden world's surface by the combat, the High Command of the Mordant 13th concentrated the efforts of much of their rank and file infantry, tanks and APCs on the desert outskirts of one ancient ruin, where a terrible precedent was being set--the Necrons and Tau were formally allying. With space marines from the Howling Griffons, Jade Legion, Crimson Wing and other chapters in support, along with radical Ordo Xenos Inquisitor Rhadamanthus Goh under the close supervision of puritan Ordo Hereticus Inquisitor Augustus, and a small but determined detachment of allied Eldar, the Imperium eschewed superheavies and titans for precision strikes to attempt to seize the critical objectives and split the nascent Necron/Tau alliance; in opposition, multiple Necron lords, three Monoliths, the Nightbringer and the Deceiver, and a massive Tau fire cadre rallied around an uplifted Necron Pylon superheavy.

Things appeared hopelessly bleak for the Imperium from the outset, as both an uncharacteristic timidity by the Astartes and an horrific display of inaccurate shooting made the oncoming Necron/Tau alliance appear unstoppable--especially when the Necrontyr played a 'secret weapon:' the unleashing of several captured Tyranid gargantuan creatures, which reaped a deadly toll on the Imperial lines. Things reached their nadir when a space marine librarian wheeled his bike to stave off a Tau flank attack--and immolated himself with his own psychic power.

As the Imperial line faltered, however, Inquisitor Augustus abandoned his watchkeeping role and led an Imperial charge from the very front, crossing the boobytrapped highway which demarked each front line first and heroically rallying Imperial forces. As tanks, dreadnoughts and APCS of every description disintegrated around it, a lone Howling Griffons Rhino surged after him, seemingly indestructible even when the Pylon itself turned upon it; the Mordant High Command proper arrived to contest the central objective; and Howling Griffon Sternguard and Crimson Wing terminators deep struck and droppodded into the very heart of enemy lines to wreak havoc. Concentrated Jade Legion Whirlwind Suppression Force fire whittled one Necron flank down until they phased out in the face of critical losses...and at the end, the result hung in the balance.

At that moment, Rhadamanthus Goh risked once again the wrath of his allies and reached out with his experimental radical psychic powers to seize the mind of one of the Tyranid monstrosities, and turn it against the wall of Necron Monoliths which appeared would carry the day. His effort was successful, and the monstrous Exocrine's bioweapon lanced out at his psionic command with destructive power...but the Monolith's living metal shell held. Invigorated, the Necrons moved their Monoliths to seize one objective and contest another, the Tau swarmed forward with their skimmers, battlesuits and Remora flyers...and the moment of possible Imperial victory slipped away.

The Necron/Tau alliance won a technical victory, seizing the central objective with one Monolith and contesting the space marines holding the objective in Imperial territory with another; the carnage aswirl around the objective in Necron/Tau space--with Sternguard, terminators, droppods, superheavy Pylons, Hammerheads and C'tan bashing away at each other--saw all objective-seizing Troops units swept clear by mid-battle, leaving it completely unclaimed. However, by completely phasing out one entire Necron army, the Imperials achieved a 'bonus' objective...leaving the bloody struggle for this critical point on Glavinus 5/7 a judged Draw.

That was a bitter pill for the Mordant 13th and their allies to swallow, however...as the tomb world was left a tomb no longer...and yet another world full of ancient and implacable evil was reawakened to plague the forty-first millennium...

Kudos to all the players who participated in Megabattle 5 of the Lucky 13s Campaign in North Texas; although the roughly 15,000 points in play was not enormous in scope compared to some previous campaign conflicts, the day saw all four turns of a standard Apocalypse game completed, including deployment, in little over six hours--with plenty of memorable moments and high adventure afforded by the efficiency of play and sporting atmosphere on display. While there will still be opportunities to see multiple superheavy vehicles take the field and armies in the tens of thousands on either side clash at arms, this 'compact Apocalypse' template is also one which will see future play, without doubt, after the day's success!

As for the Mordant 13th--on to the climactic event of the campaign, Megabattle 6, on November 8th, 2008!

Results: Ard Boyz HobbyAnnex Dallas

Twelve generals led 2500 point armies into combat at HobbyAnnex Dallas for the Ard Boyz Retailer Level Tournament despite the best efforts of Hurricane Ike, traveling from as far away as Tyler and Waco. Moving on to the Regional Level were:

First: Adam Gipson, Chaos Daemons Second: Bob Westbrook, Tau Third: David Caldwell, Tyranids

Congratulations to all participants!

Results: Ard Boyz HobbytownUSA Dallas

40K generals led their 2500 point armies into combat at HobbytownUSA Dallas for the Ard Boyz Retailer Level Tournament. Moving on to the Regional Level were:

First: Eric Smelley, Dark Eldar Second: Chad Jones, Imperial Guard Third: Jeff Whitehead, Orks

Congratulations to all participants!

Lucky 13's Legendary Formation Creation Event

As Games Workshop's Apocalypse Lucky 13s Campaign hurtles toward it's conclusion in November, it leaves as an intentional legacy a familiarity with the epic scale and storytelling flexibility of the Apocalypse playing system which will carry forward into numerous future events; now, another L13s stamp-earning participation event will attempt to create a physical legacy which will see use on the tabletop into the future, as well...the Legendary Formation Creation Event!

Through the fall, hobbyists will choose a Datasheet from the Apocalypse Rulebook, Forge World Imperial Armour Apocalypse or the Apocalypse Reloaded supplement and work toward assembling and painting the relevant models to complete the Datasheet by Saturday, November 8th (the date of the final Lucky 13s Mega-Battle); more than that, however, participants will be able to name their Datasheet, give it a true history and background and identity--turning it into something more than simply a collection of models, but rather a 'character' of sorts, a true 'Legendary Formation!'

The ultimate goal of this event is to have recognizable Apocalypse Datasheets which players can use and re-use in future Apocalypse events, until local hobbyists come to know and rely upon those 'Legendary Formations' by name, and look to include regularly as part of their side's roster: at future Apocalypse Mega-Battles, it won't just be Jack's Eldar Revenant Titan, for example--we will learn its name, its story, and look all the more forward to seeing that history added to when it reappears on an Apocalypse battlefield! When the Mordant 13th have to take to the field next time and need artillery support, they won't just ask Chris and Brady to show up with their Basilisks--they will recruit 'Colonel Mendikoff's 264th Motorized Rifles--the Iron Guns!' And so on...

Any Datasheet from the listed sources is eligible for this event with ONE caveat: 'character-based' Datasheets, such as the multiple-space-marine-captains formation, do not really fit in with the long-term goal of creating 'Legendary Formations' which can be called upon to join future mega-battles by name; they are still eligible for the event, but are not recommended for that reason. Tank, skimmer or other such formations, Superheavy vehicles, Gargantuan creatures--all of these are the sorts of things a hobbyist could create a unit identity around, and thus easily become a 'Legendary Formation.' And as Games Workshop has conveniently made many of the original Apocalypse Datasheet boxed sets available for purchase again, and added some new ones besides, HobbytownUSA Dallas will easily be able to acquire the raw material for your Legendary Formation for you (if they don't have it on the shelf already!), and at the more economical price these Datasheet boxes offer.

Datasheets from GW's website or from White Dwarf are eligible as well, but require advance approval.

In many ways, this is the *ultimate* Apocalypse Lucky 13s event: Datasheets are the heart-and-soul of what makes the Apocalypse supplement unique, and this event--combining as it does all aspects of modeling plus the creation of a background identity and story for those models, culminating in their tabletop play--highlights all of the hobby aspects Apocalypse does best. It is my hope that the Tank Companies, Wind Rider Hosts, Tau Cadres, Tyranid Monsters and Superheavy Baneblades/Shadowswords/Titans which are created for this event will become fixtures of local Apocalypse gaming for years to come, a lasting legacy of the yearlong Lucky 13s Campaign in North Texas.

It is a not-inconsiderable task--which is why interested participants have until early November to complete it. And it is not incompatible with the other 40K activities upcoming, either--models intended to become part of a 'Legendary Formation' can be built and used for the Ard Boyz tournaments, which do not require painting, as well as intervening Apocalypse activities (including Mega-Battle 5, on October 4th) as they and their background stories are still 'works in progress.' November 8th is the goal, however: hopefully many of these formations will actually be participants in that final, Apocalyptic Mega-Battle which will climax the year-long Lucky 13s Campaign--and those which are not integrally involved will be set up for display in the Game Hall as well.

There will be a very special, Apocalypse-related prize for the winning Legendary Formation; and of course all participants will gain another stamp to fill their enrollment cards and join the hallowed ranks of the Imperial Guard Mordant 13th!

As always, the North Texas hobby mailing lists are fertile places to discuss ideas and glean inspiration for projects like this...perhaps hobbyists could join forces if they have similar ideas--creating an entire Tank Company between them, rather than two Tank Squadrons, or opting to base their two different formations around a common paint scheme, or relating the background of their creations somehow...either as allies, or ancient and implacable foes. Send an email to HTUDGameClub-subscribe@yahoogroups.com to join the HobbytownUSA Dallas mailing list, or join the North Texas-wide mailing list from the website at www.adeptusnorthtexas.com and begin throwing out your ideas.

Of all the events which North Texas hobbyists have been able to earn a stamp towards their Mordant 13th enlistment in the Lucky 13s Campaign, this has the potential to be the greatest. Your 'Legendary Formations' and the modeling, converting, painting and creative talent you choose to put behind them will make it so!

Area 51 Gaming Store Grand Opening

North Texas' newest hobby store celebrates its official Grand Opening Saturday, August 23rd, at Area 51 Gaming & Collectibles, 103 N. Main #130, in Grapevine. Owner Erin wants area hobbyists to know that the gaming tables are always free to play on! The Grand Opening celebration will feature a charity drive for the SPCA, with raffles for such prizes as a Gentle Giant Darth Vader statue, a choice of any in-stock Warhammer 40K Battalion boxed set, a helmet autographed by all of the 2008 NFL First Round Rookie Crop and a half-dozen more; door prizes; and sales on most if not all of the hobby lines they stock! Also, comics artist Brian Denham will be making an in-store appearance from 1pm-3pm, signing autographs (including free copies of his most recent work on the new 'X-Files' title, which if you haven't seen it features a script by series writer Frank Spotnitz which, combined with Brian's spot-on likenesses, gives the book more of the authentic 'X-Files' buzz than the recent movie did!). Area 51 will be the site of organized events as soon as such can be scheduled--so get familiar with them early, enjoy punch and pie, and celebrate their Grand Opening Saturday!

North Texas V5 Warhammer 40K League This Fall

Players interested in expanding their opportunities to play games of the new fifth edition Warhammer 40,000 may find this fall's North Texas Warhammer 40K League to their liking.

Coordinator Dave Clevenger breaks participation down to the basics:

Veteran 'old guns' (ages 17+ with familiarity with V5 rules) able to play at least one game a month beginning Labor Day Weekend and running through the end of November, with December reserved for playoffs, able to meet opponents in the North Dallas area, where several local stockists with gaming space are located.

Dave says the League will feature lots of options beyond those basics, ranging from incentives to play multiple opponents each month to 'honor points' based on game outcomes which will translate to on-table bonuses; size of games will be flexible and determined by the two opponents, and painted armies are preferred and recommended but *not* required (the League will have a mechanism in place to encourage players to complete the painting of their armies as the season progresses). Dave further stresses that there is *no* participation or entry fee for the League--but the number of players is finite, and the upper limit is already being approached...

So if this sounds like your kind of thing, contact Coordinator Dave Clevenger with your Name, Army, Army's Name and Phone/Email Contact information at daveclevenger@yahoo.com

Lucky 13's Adventure Storywriting Contest

In April, participants in the yearlong Apocalypse Lucky 13s Campaign in North Texas earned a participation stamp by writing stories centering on a key character they expected to participate in goings-on as the year progressed; now, they will be able to earn another stamp by leaping directly into the action, with the next Campaign Event: the Lucky 13s Adventure Storywriting Contest!

Rules for this event will be similar to the previous storywriting activity--save that the emphasis this time is on action: participants should feature an adrenaline-pumping adventure in the 40K universe in the tale they tell, this time around. The word limit will remain 1500 maximum, so the scope of the adventure attempted should reflect that: while a massive starship battle well might be something one could convey, focusing on a specific ship's maneuver which affected that overall battle would be likelier to be doable. The same applies to battlefield action--since mega-battles of thousands of points have been the thrust of the campaign, writing an adventure story about such a battle could be tempting...but success is likelier to be had in the word-count available if the emphasis is placed on one key action or conflict set against that broader canvas. And, of course, 'battles' are not the only 'adventures' in which forty-first millennium characters involved in the campaign might find themselves, and participants should feel free to explore their options, so long as they tell a cracking story.

The only other requirement is that the story, this time, MUST involve the Mordant 13th Imperial Guard 'Lucky 13s' in some way. Again, the writer's creativity is free to fully-explore what that requirement might mean: if they wish to feature a psychic struggle between their Eldar farseer and an opposing Inquisitor on the Immaterial plane, perhaps the individual combat is merely placed with the Thirteenth waging a larger war in the background, for example. However, this requirement is absolute--because this IS the Lucky 13s' destiny-defining campaign. Entries which attempt to skirt this requirement in some sort of arch or clever way will only undermine their chances to compete for Event prizes.

There will be the awarding of physical prizes of GW product, as in prior Campaign events...but a particularly exciting bonus this time around is the prospect of having winning stories 'published' in a manner of speaking by Games Workshop, in the form of presentation on their website. Having seen the quality of storytelling the local community is capable of producing, I am confident some North Texas entries would be among those worthy of such presentation!

Deadline for submission (following the guidelines below), is Tuesday, September 2nd, 2008; that gives participants all the way through the Labor Day holiday to polish their entry (but should not be regarded as encouragement to WAIT until the Labor Day holiday to start!). Good Luck, Lucky 13s!

Lucky 13s Adventure Storywriting Contest Requirements:

  1. Story must not exceed 1500 words.
  2. Story must focus on adventure: a battle, confrontation, conflict or other action-based sequence should be introduced, played out in as exciting a manner as possible, and resolved within the tale.
  3. The Imperial Guard Mordant 13th 'Lucky 13s' Regiment must be somehow convincingly involved.
  4. Story must be turned in in printed form to the submission folder at HobbytownUSA Dallas by Tuesday, September 2nd, 2008 or earlier; this printed form should be typeset, double-spaced, with the story's title and the author/participant's name at the top of the first page; multiple-page entries should be secured together via paperclip, staple or some similar, reliable method. Participants are encouraged to retain an electronic document copy of the submitted story as well, in the event their story is chosen to be sent on to Games Workshop, but the physical copy of the story will constitute their entry, at this stage.
  5. Participants may submit more than one story but each story must be submitted separately according to the above physical guidelines.
  6. Story is considered by the act of submission to be a hobby-related activity and in no way a challenge to the Intellectual Property of Games Workshop; writer/participant confers by the act of submission all rights to the story to Games Workshop to modify and/or reuse and/or not use as Games Workshop sees fit; all submissions become the property of Games Workshop.

Hwyll's Moving Annex: A Warhammer Multiplayer Event

'Farewell to the Old Location' Event

Location: HobbyAnnex Dallas (Preston/Campbell)

Date/Time: Friday, Aug 22nd, 6pm

Forces: Warhammer Fantasy Battle Armies of standard construction, not to exceed 1000 points per player

The rogue wizard Hwyll's Tower of Sorcery vanished from a remote part of Talabecland called 'the Frontier' in a pyrotechnic display a generation ago. The Tower's Annex, an ancient manor house, remained...but left isolated by its location and fear that what had happened to the Tower could happen to the manor, the old building swiftly decayed. At last rumour, it had been infested by Skaven. Suddenly, however--the old manor house has begun...moving. One report indicates a shepherd and his entire flock were flattened when the Annex suddenly materialized five meters above their heads and dropped upon them; another says a Bretonnian questing party was halted in midcharge upon a band of pillaging orks when the Annex 'appeared' directly in their path. Players will muster standardly-composed Warhammer Fantasy forces of up to 1000 points to venture into the Frontier and try to find the moving Annex, and uncover its secrets--by participating in a final tribute event to HobbyAnnex, before its own move to a new location! But beware the consequences of this fantasy Annex moving with you--or on you!

Results: August Lucky 13's Apocalypse Campaign Event: 'Burn The Witches'

The campaign of the Mordant 13th across the galaxy has uncovered numerous Warp-bound mysteries...and where such mysteries are found, eventually the inscrutable Eldar must involve themselves. So it was that Mega-Battle 4 in the yearlong Apocalypse Lucky 13s campaign found the Imperium's struggle with daemonic forces crawling up from the Warp pits turned into a side show, as Eldar of every sort--craftworld, dark and raider--swept in...and in North Texas' particular corner of the planetwide battles that ensued, a true Eldar Civil War developed, as rival Phoenix Kings led each side into battle, Scorpion-against-Scorpion, Karandras-against-Arhra...with the full muster of the Inquisition squarely in the middle!

The being which claimed to be the dethroned Phoenix King Arhra led three full Dark Eldar Kabals and two Eldar Pirate Raider bands into battle, their center held by an eruption of Khornate might from the daemon pits below--led by an almost-unimaginably-powerful Avatar of Khorne itself! Rightful Phoenix King Karandras countered with a Craftworld Eldar force that included a magnificent Revenant Titan, siding with an Imperial faction that had, in response to the augurs and portents, mustered no less a force than *six* Inquisitors of the three major ordos, a full Grey Knight Commandery, a Battle Sister Canoness, a Space Marine Chapter Master and two Baneblades! Battle focused on an erupting Daemon Pit, dead-center on the main highway through a ruined city; at the end of it, Karandras had been striken from the fighting by taking full-on a close range Pirate fire dragon volley, but the space marines rescued his fallen form, contesting that objective, while Arhra paid for an extremely aggressive flank attack into the Imperial artillery lines when a Callidus assassin put an end to his vainglorious attempt to reclaim the title of Scorpion Lord, and the Adepta Sororitas held that objective for the side of Order. Disorder set up their forward command in a gilded ruin which the Imperial forces never really threatened, then snuck Dark Eldar mandrakes into Order's own forward command building, to contest it; the fate of the conflict thus devolved down to the outcome of the struggle for the descrated altar over the Daemon Pit in the dead-center of the fighting: an almost superheroic effort by the minions of Inquisitor Solomyn Kaine and the tenacious Wraithlords and Wraithguard of Karandras' Craftworld appeared likely to sweep it clear of every Khornate daemon which bubbled through into the Material world...but at the end, even as daemon princes, Soulgrinders, Juggernauts and the Avatar itself fell around them, the two remnants of a squad of bloodletter daemons remained on the altar, to contest it, as well--and with that, the enigmatic Eldar withdrew from both sides, leaving the conflict a draw, the forces of the Inquisition bloodied and confused...but still standing.

Kudos to the Mega-Battle's participants, all of whose forces had their moments in the sun: Dark Eldar Kabalists Avery, Jackson and Eric, Eldar Raiders Matt and Jeff, and Daemon lord Gama and Craftworlder Jack and his Imperial allies Josh, Kyle, Forrest, Bill and David.

The unique angle of having rival Phoenix Lords Karandras and Arhra (if that was in fact truly Arhra!) take centerstage in this 'Burn the Witches' Mega-Battle gave it a completely unique flavor, as because of this rivalry, in our battle Eldar actually attacked Eldar; this was a bit of Mega-Battle backstory created by the players themselves, which makes it the best sort...and the struggles of each Phoenix King, on opposite flanks of the battlefield, became the highlights of the day.

As the first Apocalypse Mega-Battle of the Lucky 13s campaign to be fought under the new V5 40K rules, the predominance of available saves in the new edition took center stage as the event's defining characteristic: the utter carnage which typified the three earlier Mega-Battles was greatly diminished this time around, as both sides--but especially Disorder, and at key times--made a law-of-averages-shatteringly high percentage of cover and invulnerable saves (greatly helped by rerolls from Matt's Farseer, who as result rivaled Order's Calidus assassin for 'model of the game'). This battle was significantly higher in infantry (and commensurately lower in superheavies, with only five total ontable, none of which blew up), as well, which magnified the effect.

At the end of the day, characters who have achieved renown since Lucky 13s began added to their reputations (and some new 'characters,' most particularly David's 'invulnerable' super-Rhino, etched their own fame!), over 27,000 points of men, aliens and daemons clashed, and twelve North Texas players edged closer to the necessary thirteen event stamps to join the hallowed roster of the Mordant Imperial Guard...the Lucky 13s!

Thanks and well done to them all!

ORIGINAL POST

On August 9th, at HobbytownUSA Dallas, the Mordant 13th 'Lucky 13s' find themselves in peril again, this time trapped atop a questionably-dormant daemonic pit and smack in the middle of a civil war between the most enigmatic of forty-first millennium races--the Eldar! Time to call in the Inquisition!

NORTH TEXAS-SPECIFIC SCENARIO RULES: 'BURN THE WITCHES' EVENT

All specific conditions following supersede any information presented in the general scenario for the fourth Apocalypse Campaign mega-battle found on the Games Workshop website, upon which it is based.

SETUP: No Mans Land will be pre-set on the diagonal centerline of two 6'x4' tables, creating an 8'x6'' battlefield. Choice of Deployment side will be diced for between side commanders. All Eldar units will begin the game in Strategic Reserve *unless* they field an Apocalypse Datasheet which requires otherwise, in which case the Datasheet rules stand, or unless they are a side commander, in which case they may choose to begin the game deployed. All other Scenario special rules and conditions, as outlined on the website, apply.

MUSTERING FORCES: Participation at HobbytownUSA Dallas will be limited to six Players per side. Sign-up will take place in person at HobbytownUSA Dallas, with interested participants needing to be certain they can meet the following conditions for play:

  1. Participants must be able to field a force themed to this specific mega-battle. In this confrontation, the Imperium will be primarily represented by forces of the Inquisition and the Mordant 13th, who will be confronting Eldar (both Craftworld and Dark). There will be six 'Imperium' slots available for sign-up, and six 'Disorder' slots available for sign-up, with an alternate for each. Dark Eldar are restricted to the 'Disorder' side--but Craftworld or Raider Eldar players may choose either; their motives, as always, remain their own. Desire to participate in these events has been high, and several players of armies themed to *this* mega-battle have deferred in previous events to players whose forces were better themed to those; please extend the same courtesy here, and only sign up for a slot which you have an army to properly represent. I cannot stress this enough: this is an Eldar and Inquisition themed event, and those forces have not had the chance for primacy before; please let those players have their chance to shine now.
  2. Participants must be signed up at HTUD by end of business Saturday, August 2nd (one week in advance of the mega-battle on August 9th), and must provide an active email address which they personally will be able to check during the subsequent week leading up to the mega-battle. This is critical: pre-planning amongst the six generals goes on for the event the entire week prior to the mega-battle, and having even one participant sign up and then not be available for such planning because they did not follow this sign-up regulation negatively impacts all other players. It should go without saying, as well--but as it has already happened: players who do not know their army rules or codex should not be signing up for an event of this magnitude and complexity. Though HTUD and other retailers regularly run learning-oriented events--this is not one of them.
  3. Points for the mega-battle will be 13,000 per side--divided as follows: the players on each side will be provided with the names and email addresses of their teammates, and each side will have the entirety of the event-preceding week to coordinate with each other and the Event Moderator on everything relevant to the Saturday mega-battle. A side commander will be determined for each side, and collectively the players on each side will determine which player will bring what units to the mega-battle, and in how many points; a player on each side will create an overall army list *for the entire side* (just one list, including everything, though broken down by individual participant's 'armies'), a copy each of which will be presented to the Moderator and the opposing side commander on the day of the battle. Strategy, tactics, force composition, Apocalypse Datasheets, Apocalypse Assets--everything will be decided by the participating players themselves, in the week leading up to the mega-battle...essentially extending the event to a weeklong amount of fun, instead of just one day of it! Thus the absolute requirement for daily email access in the event-preceding week.
  4. All models used must be at least assembled to properly represent their weapons and equipment, and should preferably be at least primed; additionally, priority in assembling the joint army lists for each side *must* be given to fully-painted models. Priority should also be extended to those things which make Apocalypse battles unique: superheavy vehicles, datasheet formations, custom-created models, etc should all be 'first choices' in the unified army list. As result, players will not have equal points amounts, nor should they expect to; every player will have a sufficiently large force to occupy them on the day, but one player may wind up bringing only 1000 points of his models, while another may bring 4000 (given the priorities noted above). However, because this will not be determined until the event-preceding week, no player who cannot field a minimum-sized Apocalypse force for the slot they claim, as described in the Apocalypse main rule book, 3000 points, should sign up for a slot in this event.
  5. Apocalypse Datasheets from the Apocalypse rulebook, Apocalypse Reloaded, the official GW website and the Forge World Apocalypse book are accepted without review; any vehicle or formation using a Datasheet from any other Forge World source, any unofficial website or created through VDR *must* be pre-approved by a moderator before its inclusion in any army list for either side. Approved Datasheets from the Datasheet Creation Competition may be used but the final, edited version, available for download from http://www.adeptusnorthtexas.com is the required one and an event moderator must be notified of its intended use in advance.
  6. Before signing up, participants must insure they are able to devote the time to the event it will require; everyone understands the demands real life can make, but if real life on that weekend might require an early departure, players should not sign up to participate. The mega-battle will start as soon as HTUD opens at 10am; participants can either bring a lunch or join with other participants to have inexpensive pizza delivered; and there is a good possibility HTUD will allow play to continue beyond the 6pm store closing, in order to complete more turns of play. No player should sign up if that commitment of time is impractical for them; in addition, there will be a Friday night session prior to the Saturday mega-battle, from approximately 6pm until 8pm, in which all players will be asked to assemble at the HTUD Game Hall, make their deployment bid, and deploy their models onto the tables. This will allow Turn One action to begin almost immediately upon the store opening on Saturday. Players will *not* be excluded from participating in the mega-battle if they cannot attend this Friday night session--however their models will have to come on from Reserve beginning with Turn Two on Saturday unless the player can make some arrangement with his teammates to deploy his models by proxy on Friday night.
  7. Participants must insure they can play on the day without having to be responsible for non-participants in the Game Hall; space is limited, and is there for event participants. Note this in no way excludes parents from being present for their participant children, such oversight is welcomed; but participants should not sign up if *their* responsibility would include oversight of non-participant children--there is insufficient space and too much going on. Note also that this in no way excludes short term or visiting spectators; such support is encouraged for participants, as is the opportunity to show off the hobby to potential future players. The key words are 'short term' and 'visiting:' the Game Hall is not an acceptable venue for non-participants to eat, babysit, converse loudly, play laptop computer games or engage in other potentially distracting activities on a day when it has been reserved for a mega-battle; the participants in that event have devoted a great deal of time in preparation for same, and deserve a venue conducive to fully enjoying it.
  8. Each side may include Apocalypse Strategic Assets from either the rule book or Reloaded in their 13,000 point army list at a cost of 250 points each, but must have any they desire preapproved by an event moderator before game, as some may be excluded from play *or* may be awarded to one side or another at no cost immediately prior to Turn One start.

Some of these rules of participation *are* keenly-drawn. No offense should be inferred by any participant which a given rule excludes, however: in all cases, they have been imposed based on lessons learned in previous Apocalypse Lucky 13s events, with an eye toward insuring the most fun event possible within the time- and physical-limitations the HTUD Game Hall affords. Voluntary compliance to these pre-announced restrictions saves event moderators having to exclude participants who do not follow the rules from playing in future events, which neither person involved enjoys very much...and which runs counter to the whole point of Apocalypse, which is having fun on an enormous scale.

The mystery has deepened. The drawn lines have become murkier, ally and enemy harder to distinguish. Yet the stakes remain monumental. Will you be a part of deciding the day? Join--or oppose--the enigmatic Eldar as the Lucky 13s pursue their destiny in 'Burn The Witches!'

Results: Datasheet Creation Competition!

Thank you to all the hobbyists who submitted Datasheets for the Apocalypse Lucky 13s Campaign Datasheet Creation Competition. Remember that participation earns you your Campaign stamp, not outcome. And thank you for your patience while awaiting a resolution--I ultimately received 18 entries, over a dozen of which were eligible for the physical prizes, and all of which had so much promise that I sent them to a number of sources who very generously took their time to review and comment on them. This led to a second (and in some cases third and fourth and...!) round of revisions, during which all of the participants showed great willingness to redraft their creations, in effort to get them to their highest level of playability. As result, a(n altogether appropriate) total of *13* submissions have won the 'prize' of being approved for use in an upcoming local Apocalypse game, and several are so good they will likely become local Apocalypse staples! All of them are being prepared for presentation to GW as a package, as well, for their consideration. Had participants not been willing to rework and redo their creations, probably fewer than half that number would have passed muster (in fact, only *one* submission passed through all reviewers and commenters unchanged at all!); kudos to the broad spirit of cooperation (admittedly toward a worthwhile goal!) in evidence...and though I cannot name them, thank you *very much* to those sources who took their own time to review and comment upon the submissions, the suggested revisions making them all much more playable and Apocalyptic! Time and circumstance prevented a number of hobbyists from being able to get their ideas down on paper...unfortunate, since several of those ideas were among the ones I was most looking forward to seeing; perhaps we can revisit this idea again soon (though, given the amount of work it wound up involving to do right, not *very* soon :); I was really looking forward to seeing that tainted Eldar Revenant and Loyalist Terminator formations I heard discussed! Meantime, the Datasheet Creation Competition prize winners are:

  • GRAND PRIZE WINNER: Forrest Buchly, Inquisition High Decree Puritas Formation
  • HobbyAnnex Special Participation Prize: Gamaliel Martinez, Chaos Daemon Avatar of Khorne Gargantuan Creature

Forrest will receive a limited edition Games Workshop 25th Anniversary figure case from HobbytownUSA (ideally, to store his created Formation in); Gama will receive a brand new Games Workshop publication from my personal collection (novel or background book, depending on what he does not have).

Also approved for use in future Apocalypse games*:

  • Jack Salva, Necron Tomb World Guardians Formation
  • Eric Smelley, Dark Eldar Soul Reaper Cannon Superheavy Vehicle
  • Eric Smelley, Space Wolves Russ's Spear Formation
  • Chad Jones, Eldar Harlequin's Specter Titan Superheavy Vehicle
  • Chad Jones, Eldar Knight Titan Superheavy Vehicle
  • Blake Weinstein, Chaos Space Marines MAC Rifle Team Formation
  • Brady Allen, Tyranid Lictor Ambush Brood Formation
  • Christopher Allen, Space Marine Razorback Flying Column Formation
  • Josh Sherman, Space Marine Whirlwind Cyclone Force Formation
  • Juan Diaz, Tau Gue'vesa Disruption Force Formation
  • Keith McCallig, Chaos Daemons Plague Carnival Formation

*--for fairness, at an event I moderate.

Results: 40K V5 Academy Tournament

HobbytownUSA Dallas' 40K V5 Academy, which was free with the purchase of the new rulebook, concluded two successful evening skullsessions and practice games with the first fifth-edition tournament in the area, which in three rounds introduced the competitors to all three of the new Missions and Deployment Conditions. Thursday evening's session was attended by eleven hobbyists, with fourteen more on Friday; each received a customized 'V5 cheat sheet' summarizing the major change's from V4 to V5, and participated in exercises and practice games to familiarize themselves with most of those changes. The 'cheat sheet' will be made available to every hobbyist in the North Texas area shortly as a download at http://www.AdeptusNorthTexas.com.

Twelve of the Academy participants entered the tournament on Saturday. The races of the forty-first millennium were well represented, with three Space Marine armies and a Daemonhunter inquisition force representing the Imperium, a craftworld and two Dark Eldar forces, two Tyranid hives, an ork horde, a Necron detachment and a Tau cadre completing the dozen (Chaos was inexplicably absent in any form...). Three players entered the final round undefeated: Juan's Tau and Jackson's Daemonhunters clashed on the Ancient Earthen Ruins top table--but when their struggle ended in a Draw, leaving them both 2-0-1 and tied for Second, the Overall Tournament Victory went to the only undefeated *and* untied player, Brady and his Tyranids.

Over half the armies were fully painted, and several of those which were't because they were fielding new and not-yet-painted squads would have vied for top honours, had the rest of their armies been finished: Jeff's terrific-looking wraithbone-accented Eldar Guardians and Josh T's screaming-bright-red Ork trukk spring particularly to mind. In a sporting display, two-thirds of the armies received at least one vote for Favorite Army, and two-thirds of the players votes for Best Sportsman--and (although it was not prohibited), no one voted for themselves, which reflects that highly-sporting atmosphere. Brady's Tyranids, Josh S's Space Marines, Bill's Space Marines, Tommy's Dark Eldar and Eric's Dark Eldar all received multiple Favorite Army votes--but the clear winner was Juan's beautifully-executed (and perennial favorite) Tau. Brady and Jeff earned multiple Best Sportsman votes, and both Josh S and Bill accomplished the rare and laudable feat of being named Best Sportsman by all three opponents they faced--including each other!

Curiously, Josh S and Bill also vied for the not-exactly-coveted 'Murphy's Luck Award:' ordinarily, when an unit performs as futilely over the course of three games as Josh's Land Speeder did (destroyed every game, killed exactly one model in the course of doing so) it would be a slam dunk--but then Bill mustered a shooting performance in the final game of such surpassing futility as to become the stuff of legend: with a shooting-oriented Space Marine army, and against a ravenous-for-hand-to-hand-combat bug horde, he shot over eighty times, including several multiple-model-targeting template missiles...and inflicted a grand total of five wounds, before having his spectacular ill-fortune wiped from memory in a tide of nearly-full-strength chitinous fangs-and-claws. Frankly, I've never seen anything quite like it...

Kudos to these winners of an outstanding field, which also included Alex's Tyranids (Alex lost only once, also, making the Great Devourer's V5 debut an impressive 5-1), Blake's Necrons and Kyle's Space Marines; and thanks to Games Workshop and HobbytownUSA Dallas for hosting and supporting with fine prizes. The fifth era has begun!

  • OVERALL CHAMPION: Brady Allen, Tyranids
  • RUNNER UP: Jackson Elliott, Daemonhunters
  • FAVORITE ARMY: Juan Diaz, Tau
  • BEST SPORTSMAN: Josh Sherman, Space Marines
  • MURPHY'S LUCK AWARD: Bill Mikesell, Space Marines

Portal Wars! Apocalypse Event at HobbyAnnex

At 10am Saturday, August 2, 2008 HobbyAnnex Dallas will put their expanded new gameplay area to the test with an Apocalypse Team Event: Portal Wars! This all-day event (with scheduled half hour lunch and dinner breaks) is $10 for participation--but *free* to HobbyAnnex Game Club members! Fifth Edition 40K rules, in concert with Apocalypse supplement rules, will be used to facilitate a three round tourney featuring six teams of two players each, 6000 points per side. Sign up is already open at HobbyAnnex and will run through July 31, 2008 or when all twelve slots are full. The event is restricted to ages 18 and older, Codex armies only (no White Dwarf or supplement armies) and Tyranids armies are not eligible for this particular event. There are a number of additional special rules; see the complete write-up posted on the Adeptus North Texas mailing list by event creator and moderator, Aaron, or contact HobbyAnnex for all the details! Prizes will be given for the two-man team which is named Best General, as well as for the required story submission explaining the background of why the two armies on each team are united in the Portal Wars. Good luck; the mysteries beyond the Portal demand to be solved...

40K Tournament at Comic Asylum July 19th

Comic Asylum in Garland will sponsor a 1500 point Warhammer 40,000 tournament Saturday, July 19th, 2008. The tournament will use V4 rules, but Chapter Approved armies as well as Codex armies can participate. The 'three colour standard' is requested (and required of any armies which wish to compete for the Best Army prize), and three printed copies of their army list are required of players. Comic Asylum is at 4750 North Jupiter Road in Garland; click on their store listing at left for additional contact information and tournament details!

HobbytownUSA Dallas 40K V5 Academy (July 17-19)

HobbytownUSA Dallas is offering a bonus for any hobbyist who purchases a copy of the upcoming Warhammer 40,000 Fifth Edition rulebook from them: a three session '40K V5 Academy,' to put the differences in the new systems into practical action, and make the transition as smooth and intuitive as possible!

HTUD already has sign up sheets available for the Fifth Edition hardcover rulebook; to insure you receive your copy on July 12, 2008, the announced release date, simply sign up in the gaming area of the store. Collector's Editions and Gamer's Editions are going to be extremely difficult to come by, but the standard hardcover rulebooks should be plentiful, and the purchase of *any* variant entitles you to participate in one or all three of the V5 Academy sessions, scheduled for the following week. The schedule is as follows:

+++HTUD 40K V5 Academy+++

  • Thursday, July 17 -- 5pm to 8pm: Introduction and Q&A/FAQ about the new edition. Bring your army to do hands-on examples of the new Assault rules, Vehicle rules, etc.
  • Friday, July 18 -- 5pm to 8pm: Skirmish with new edition. Put the small scale maneuvers learned yesterday into context with new Objective rules, Scoring rules, etc.
  • Saturday, July 19 -- Noon to 5pm: V5 Combat Patrol Tournament! Three rounds of tournament action under the new rules, with full prize support!

This Academy--complete with tournament!--is designed to ease the transition into the mechanics of a new edition as smoothly as possible...as well as be a lot of fun...and the only cost of participation is purchase of the new 40K Fifth Edition rulebook from the sponsoring retailer, HobbytownUSA Dallas. Sign up to reserve your copy now, and prepare for the forty-first millennium, edition five, in the Game Hall of HobbytownUSA Dallas!

Fifth Edition Boxed Set Incoming!

With the Rulebook for Warhammer 40,000 Fifth Edition arriving in July, Games Workshop has released first official word of the companion starter V5 Boxed Set, to follow in September.

The new starter box will reflect many of the 'back-to-its-origins' qualities evident in Fifth Edition rules, by pitting the antagonists available in the very first Warhammer 40K 'big box' version of the game, the 1992 Second Edition, as the iconic Space Marines battle the Orks. The contents of this edition will put all previous 40K boxes to shame, however, with its model count--and *every* model in the box will be a newly-tooled, 'click-together' style version, designed to increase ease of assembly for players new to the game and the hobby, yet be indistinguishable once put together and fielded on a tabletop from the multi-part models available in add-on squad boxes. Ork players, already revelling in one of the best-received new codices in years, will get a new Ork Warboss, five new Ork Nobs, a unit of Ork Boyz and three new plastic Deth Koptas; Space Marine players will counter with a new Space Marine Commander figure, five elite Space Marine Terminators, the essential Tactical Squad, and an iconic Dreadnought!

Each will include additional bonus models (including new playable terrain pieces), dice, templates and all of the V5 essentials, as well.

The rulebook which will come with this starter box will be a condensed form of the stand-alone hardcover rulebook, available in July. It is described as abridged, but fully-playable in conjunction with a given Army Codex.

This frankly-spectacular box of forty-first millennium goodness will be available from your local stockist in September 2008, with an anticipated on-the-shelf retail price of US$60...a price which makes the contents look even more spectacular.

Two nearly-500-point starter armies and all the essentials for about sixty bucks: the fall looks to belong to the grim darkness of the far future. Place your order for one of the first batch of V5 Boxed Sets from your favorite Stockist.

New Citadel Paint System: A Hand Flamer of Your Own!

Games Workshop will release the most comprehensive hobby painting system in their history with the new Citadel Paint System this summer. If you have a comfort level with the Primers, Protective Coats, Foundation Paint and Citadel Paint colour ranges already available, you will find those items still available; to them, GW will add a specially-designed and fully-compatible Citadel Washes range, to add depth and highlights to your models...and the tool which will facilitate all of it is the new Citadel Spray Brush, designed to worth with each of these paint lines with as much ease as possible--and to look like a Warhammer 40,000 Hand Flamer, in the process (that would be a 'close combat weapon' variant to those who aren't Rogue Trader or V2 grognards).

The Spray Brush *should not* be viewed as an airbrush, and will not be marketed as one. Although the technical principles are the same, airbrushes allow a vast range of painting functions and capabilities (at a considerably greater price and level of complication). The Citadel Spray Brush should, rather, be viewed as a 'base-coating brush,' an implement to deliver primer coats and basic-colour base coats to squads, regiments and other numerically large blocks of models, quickly and efficiently. To that end, mixing instructions for every kind of paint in the various Citadel ranges will be included with the brush...and as they are all acrylics, the mixing medium remains, simply, water. The nozzle on the Spray Brush will also have discreet settings that will allow modelers to 'set' the amount of paint coverage they want at pre-determined levels; and the Spray Brush can be connected directly to a compressor, if the hobbyist chooses (or has access to), but can just as easily be operated by easily-connectable cans of GW Propellant. Feel free to insert whatever smart comment about Games Workshop now literally selling hobbyists 'hot air' if you'd like...but grand hobby comedy aside, the idea behind the Spray Brush, the ranges of paints, and the compatibly-designed propellant cans is to provide access to a tool like this--which can be of tremendous benefit to a hobby for which painting large numbers of models is a critical component--to the vast majority of hobbyists who are not adept with, or even comfortable around, a more-sophisticated tool like a higher-line airbrush. It is an intermediate step from brush painting exclusively to mastering single- or double-action full-feature airbrushes.

And, of course, at the end of the day...it is also a 1:1 scale Hand Flamer of your very own. What hobbyist doesn't secretly want that?

40K Fifth Edition Incoming...

The grim darkness of the far future...is closer than you think.

Warhammer 40,000 will see a new edition--the fifth rules set for Games Workshop's popular gothic science fiction miniatures wargame--in July, 2008, with the release of the updated rulebook in hardcover. This edition will be back-compatible with in-print army codex books and existing miniatures, to insure a smooth transition for hobbyists.

In addition to the hardcover rulebook, which will be a regularly stocked item, GW will make the V5 rules available in two special editions, available *only* at the time of the new game's release. The Collector's Edition will feature a multi-fold slipcase, a genuine purity-seal embossed cover, and will be printed in strictly-limited numbers worldwide. The Gamer's Edition will be a package including the regular hardcover rulebook along with special edition templates and an advance release of the new movement and action markers, all in a special 'ammunition crate' with foam inserts, which can subsequently be used for figure storage or transport, etc. Hobbyists interested in these special editions should pre-order from their regular stockists; as with similar special edition releases in past, they will be available in only limited numbers and when gone will not be re-released.

May Lucky 13s Event: Mega-Battle 3 'I Didn't See That Coming!'

The third mega-battle in Games Workshop's year-long Apocalypse Campaign, The Lucky 13s, 'I Didn't See That Coming!,' will take place Saturday, May 31st--pitting the Mordant 13th Imperial Guard and the Daemonhunters of the Ordo Malleus, with their Imperial allies, against the might of the arch-foe...the Ruinous Powers of Chaos!

The pattern for HobbytownUSA Dallas' event will closely follow the largely-successful model of the second mega-battle in March: participation slots will be limited to numbers the Game Hall can comfortably handle, and interested participants must sign up in advance, no later than by the completion of the Daemonic Council Painting Event the prior Sunday, May 25th, and be committed to having internet access and some amount of available time for the week immediately leading up to the mega-battle on the 31st, as both sides will again coordinate amongst themselves during that week to present one army list, representing the entire side, Imperial or Chaos.

The Sign-Up list will be available at HobbytownUSA Dallas Friday, April 25th. Paid members of the HTUD Game Club will get first shot at signing up for slots, through the end of April; everyone will be able to fill remaining open slots beginning Thursday, May 1st. Remember before signing up and committing to the mega-battle that the Ard Boyz Regional is that same day, as well as the IPMS Regional convention. Play will begin immediately when HTUD opens Saturday at 10am, and will run at least until the store closes at 6pm, with the possibility of running past closing, as was managed recently for the Ard Boyz tourney, if store manpower allows.

The Lucky 13s Campaign has been an enormous success in North Texas thus far, and these mega-battles are its centerpieces. This clash will be monumental, as waves of Grey Knights, Inquisitors, Space Marines and, of course, the Lucky 13s face Chaos Space Marines, Daemons, Traitors, Heretics, Cultists, the Daemonic Council, and Ahriman of the Thousand Sons himself in the third mega-battle of the Lucky 13s Apocalypse Campaign, 'I Didn't See That Coming!,' Saturday, May 31st, at the Game Hall of HobbytownUSA Dallas!

NORTH TEXAS-SPECIFIC SCENARIO RULES

All specific conditions following supersede any information presented in the general scenario for the third Apocalypse Campaign mega-battle found on the Games Workshop website, upon which it is based.

SETUP: No Mans Land will be pre-set on the diagonal centerline of two 6'x4' tables, creating an 8'x6'' battlefield. The Imperium will have choice of deployment zone, due to their successes in the prior mega-battles. A Chaos Summoning Circle will then manifest in the center of the table, in No Mans Land, representing the focus for the Warp Rift Apocalypse Formation. This will count as a Vital Objective per the Apocalypse Rules. Three additional Objectives will then be declared for each side, within their Deployment Zones. These physical Objectives will replace the Army Agenda objectives utilized in mega-battle two--but players in this event who achieved their Army Agendas in the previous game *will* still get their special benefit.

MUSTERING FORCES: Participation at HobbytownUSA Dallas will be limited to six Players per side on the primary 8'x6' table. Four additional players--two per side--will be able to participate via the separate 6'x4' artillery bombardment table, about which more see following. Sign-up will take place in person at HobbytownUSA Dallas, with interested participants needing to be certain they can meet the following conditions for play:

  • Participants must be able to field a force themed to this specific mega-battle. In this confrontation, the Mordant 13th and its allies will be confronting all the varied force types aligned with the Ruinous Powers of Chaos. There will be six 'Imperium' slots available for sign-up. Imperial Guard players may sign up for four of the six slots, and two will be specifically dedicated to Guard, including the Mordant 13th; because the Imperium is ready for the upcoming attack, two slots will be dedicated to Daemonhunter players. The remaining two are open to any other Imperial army types--Space Marines, other Inquisitorial types, etc.There will also be six 'Chaos' slots available for sign-up: these may be of any Chaos composition--Chaos Space Marines, Daemons, Lost and Damned, Imperial Guard Traitors, etc--except that slot 1 is reserved for a player committed to bringing the chief villains of the mega-battle, the Thousand Sons, in strength. These 12 will be the primary participants in the mega-battle, playing on the primary table, and the only ones which can directly win or lose the game. However, because both sides are ready for this clash when it finally comes, each has established their artillery in the hills above the battlefield ruin, and this will be represented by play on an additional unconnected 6'x4' table. There will be two slots for each side available for sign-up--an 'artillery' player, whose job it will be to lob indirect fire onto the primary table, and a 'strike force' player, whose job will be to silence those big guns. Players who sign up for either the Imperium Artillery player slot or the Chaos Artillery player slot *must* have completed sufficient models to represent at least one minimum-size appropriate Apocalypse Datasheet (either a Basilisk Battery or Suppression Force), which they will get to field free. Any additional forces--and all Strike Force forces--must come from the side's total points allotment. Strike Force units must comprise of units which are either Flyers or can Deep Strike, to reach their targets in time. Players who sign up to participate in the mega-battle on the artillery table will be able to enjoy a unique role in the game, but must understand and accept that, because they will have to play their game turns in concert with the pace of the main table, their amount of 'down time' on the day may be correspondingly higher.
  • Participants must be signed up at HTUD by end of business Saturday, May 24th (one week in advance of the mega-battle on May 31st), and must provide an active email address which they will be able to check during the subsequent week leading up to the mega-battle. Points for the mega-battle will be 13,000 per side--divided as follows:
    • Following the May Lucky 13s Event The Daemonic Council on Sunday, May 25th, the players on each side will be provided with the names and email addresses of their teammates, and each side will have the entirety of the following week to coordinate with each other and the Event Moderator on everything relevant to the Saturday mega-battle. A 'Commanding General' will be assigned for each side in advance, and collectively the players on each side will determine which player will brings what units to the mega-battle, and in how many points; a player on each side will create an overall army list *for the entire side* (just one list, including everything, though broken down by individual participant's 'armies'), a copy each of which will be presented to the moderator and the opposing 'Commanding General' on the day of the battle. Strategy, tactics, force composition, Apocalypse Assets--everything will be decided by the participating players themselves, in the week leading up to the mega-battle...essentially extending the event to a weeklong amount of fun, instead of just one day of it!
  • All models used must be at least assembled to properly represent their weapons and equipment, and should preferably be at least primed; priority in assembling the joint army lists for each side *must* be given to fully-painted models. In addition, priority should be extended to those things which make Apocalypse battles unique: superheavy vehicles, datasheet formations, custom-created models, etc should all be 'first choices' in the unified army list. As result, players will not have equal points amounts, nor should they expect to; every player will have a sufficiently large force to occupy them on the day, but one player may wind up bringing only 1000 points of his models, while another may bring 3000 (given the priorities noted above).
  • Apocalypse Datasheets from the Apocalypse rulebook, the official GW website, and the Forge World Apocalypse book are accepted without review; any vehicle or formation using a Datasheet from any other Forge World source, any unofficial website or created through VDR *must* be pre-approved by a moderator before its inclusion in any army list for either side.
  • Before signing up, participants must insure they are able to devote the time to the event it will require; everyone understands the demands real life can make, but if real life on that weekend might require an early departure, players should not sign up to participate. The mega-battle will start as soon as HTUD opens at 10am; participants can either bring a lunch or go in with other participants to have pizza delivered; and there is a good possibility HTUD will allow play to continue beyond the 6pm store closing, in order to complete more turns of play. No player should sign up if that commitment of time is impractical for them; in addition, there will be a Friday night session prior to the Saturday mega-battle, from approximately 6pm until 8pm, in which all players will be asked to assemble at the HTUD Game Hall, make their deployment bid, and deploy their models onto the tables. This will allow Turn One action to begin almost immediately upon the store opening on Saturday. Players will *not* be excluded from participating in the mega-battle if they cannot attend this Friday night session--however their models will have to come on from Reserve beginning with Turn Two on Saturday unless the player can make some arrangement with his teammates to deploy his models for him on Friday night.
  • Participants must insure they can play on the day without having to be responsible for non-participants in the Game Hall; space is limited, and is there for event participants. Note this in no way excludes parents from being present for their participant children, such oversight is welcomed; but participants should not sign up if *their* responsibility would include oversight of non-participant children--there is insufficient space and too much going on. Note also that this in no way excludes short term or visiting spectators; such support is encouraged for participants, as is the opportunity to show off the hobby to potential future players. The key words are 'short term' and 'visiting:' the Game Hall is not an acceptable venue for non-participants to eat, babysit, converse loudly or engage in other potentially distracting activities on a day when it has been reserved for a mega-battle; the participants in that event have devoted a great deal of time in preparation for same, and deserve a venue conducive to fully enjoying it.
  • The Chaos side receives the Warp Rift formation at the center of the table free--but must pay for the models which use it from their 13,000 point allotment. The Imperium receives all Grey Knight units at half their Codex points cost *IF* the models are fully-painted and based; otherwise they cost their normal points to field. Each side receives one minimum-size artillery Datasheet formation (Basilisk Battery or Suppression Force) on the artillery bombardment table free, if the models representing the Datasheet are at least fully assembled; they may increase the size of that formation or add formations at cost, from their 13,000 point allotment. The Chaos side will also utilize the Daemonic Council, composed of submitted models from the painting event concluding the Sunday prior; special rules (including cost) for this unit will be provided.

The sides have been drawn. The Imperium has dug in, in the name of uncovering heresy...and surviving, to reveal it; the Powers of Darkness have responded, bringing all the forces of Chaos, including the Daemonic Council and perhaps Ahriman himself to contest the outcome. The stakes are monumental. Will you be a part of deciding the day?

Results: Lucky 13's Character Story-writing Event!

The fiction submitted as part of April's Lucky 13s Apocalypse Campaign Character Story-writing Event was uniformly good: existing heroes were amplified upon, new villains burst onto the scene, internecine rivalries gained friction...and the tabletop experience in future battles should significantly increase in mood, atmosphere and enjoyment, as result!

All eleven participants earned Lucky 13s Event Stamps for their entries; in addition, three prizes were awarded by HobbytownUSA Dallas and Games Workshop. The winner of Best Story will receive the in-stock codex or army book of their choice (including the new Daemons books!); a special Youngbloods Prize for Excellence by a younger hobbyist was also awarded, and that winner will receive a copy of the new White Dwarf (featuring local event coverage!). Finally, a Door Prize random draw from among all remaining participants was conducted, to reward--and encourage future--participation, and that winner will receive the in-stock Games Workshop paperback novel of their choice!

  • BEST STORY: 'Aurelia Darklight,' by Jack Salva
  • YOUNGBLOODS PRIZE: 'Uldrad,' by Blake Weinstein
  • CHARACTER EVENT DOOR PRIZE: 'Way of the Scorpion,' by Chad Jones

Congratulations to the winners--and to all participants, as the level of storytelling was tremendous!

Results: May Lucky 13's Daemonic Council Painting Event

The Daemonic Council will lead Chaos forces in next Saturday's Lucky 13s Apocalypse Campaign mega-battle 'I Didn't See That Coming'--and will look impressive doing so as a result of today's Lucky 13s Painting Event. Judges (including participants present) voted for their favorite submitted models in each of four categories--Favorite Chaos Spawn, Favorite Daemon Prince, Favorite Character Model, Youngbloods, and Favorite Overall--with the following results:

  • Favorite Overall Daemonic Council Model: Bob Westbrook--Chaos Spawn
  • Favorite Daemonic Council Character Model: Eric Smelley--'Destiny' Greater Daemon of Tzeentch
  • Favorite Daemonic Council Daemon Prince Model: Jack Salva
  • Favorite Daemonic Council Chaos Spawn Model: Brady Allen
  • Favorite Youngblood Model: Blake Weinstein--Chaos Spawn

It is always worth noting that every model except one received at least one vote in some category. I am not sure it is worth noting that the only model which got NO votes was the one *I* painted, but in the interests of full disclosure, there you are :) The Chaos Spawn category was, curiously, the most hotly contested, with the model voted Favorite Overall a Spawn and both top finishers in the Favorite Youngbloods offering Spawn (Brady's Spawn was second in that category and won it when Bob's won Overall, and Blake's Spawn was second in the Youngbloods category, winning that when Brady's won in the Spawn category). Special mention should be made of Ashley McDaniel's Daemachinex Character model: it finished *one vote* behind Eric's Changer of Ways in that category, and finished third overall behind Bob's Spawn and Eric's Greater Daemon (and is probably the best painted model I have seen Ashley produce, besides).

HobbytownUSA Dallas and Games Workshop provided all five winners with prizes of Warhammer and 40K model boxed sets--from Bretonnian Knights to a Khorne Lord to Tomb King Chariots to Goblin Spider Riders to a Carnosaur!--so get by HTUD at Walnut Hill/Central Expressway and admire the submissions in the game display cabinet, opposite the Mordant 13th High Command they will soon face on the tabletop; thanks again to HTUD and GW for sponsoring the ongoing Lucky 13s Campaign, and to the Daemonic Council participants for completing their models, and to such an excellent standard!

The mega-battle awaits!

The seals have been broken. The wards have been shattered. The thousand-year-imprisonment is at an end. And the Daemonic Council is loose upon the galaxy once more.

Participants in the HobbytownUSA Dallas Lucky 13s Apocalypse Campaign banded together to create the Mordant 13th High Command Squad in March, to lead the 'good guys.' Between now and Sunday, May 25th, participants will have the opportunity to return the favour, for the 'bad guys,' by purchasing, constructing, converting and painting a model to represent the Daemonic Council of Colfax--which will then lead the Chaos forces the following Saturday, May 31st, in the third Lucky 13s mega-battle!

Colfax was a system of Imperial worlds which, millennia ago, were corrupted by the Ruinous Powers. A gatherum of the most powerful daemonic entities completely enslaved the worlds, so totally that the only response the High Lords of Terra could make was exterminatus--obliterating each world, and every living thing upon it, in turn, until the daemonic leaders of the rebellion were trapped on the last surviving moon of the system. Instead of destroying it, however, and releasing the entities to the Warp, the Inquisitors of the Ordo Malleus contrived to seal the Daemonic Council inside a towering obelisk, making of the moon in its entirety a daemonifuge, an eternal prison for the rebellious daemons, then cast the moon adrift through space, and declared it perdita, prohibited from all contact. And so it--and they--remained until recent events, when representatives of a host of races were lured to the Prohibited Moon of Colfax by the false projection of the mysterious Warp signature which has been driving the campaign-across-the-galaxy of the Mordant 13th Imperial Guard. The races battled across the moon, until their efforts unwittingly burned out the hexagrammatic wards sealing the Council in their nether-prison: the obelisk faded from existence in this physical reality, and in a geyser of screaming Warp entities, the Daemonic Council returned.

The Council is led by the Daemachinex, an Arch-Daemon of Chaos Undivided who bows to no one, man, myth or machine. Daemachinex, an entity part muscle/part machine, is attended by Fellsoul, a daemon of smoke and shadow who acts as Daemachinex' advisor in all matters sorcerous. The four chief Ruinous Powers which facilitated Daemachinex' rise to mastery over Colfax are represented on the Council each by an ancient and obscene Greater Daemon: Tzeentch by a vulturous Lord of Change, Khorne a rampaging Bloodthirster, Nurgle a grotesque Great Unclean One and Slaanesh a mysterious Keeper of Secrets. In its glory day, the Council boasted a great number of Daemon Princes stationed just below these most-powerful entities; trapped for centuries and cut off from their patron powers, the Princes of the Council are now fewer in number, but those which remain will join with their principals to seek vengeance without quarter...and they will bring with them their brethren, reduced by their eons of imprisonment to mindless Chaos Spawn, driven now only by their abject hatred for those who brought them low....

Participants who wish to contribute a model to the Daemonic Council may sign up to do so at HobbytownUSA Dallas, once the sign up sheet is formatted and posted in the Game Area. Unlike the High Command Group, which is now a permanent HTUD feature, the Daemonic Council will be central only to the upcoming May mega-battle, so participants *will* get to keep the model they contribute to it, once the mega-battle is completed, for use with their own armies. Rules for the Daemonic Council will be based on entries in the upcoming Codex: Daemons, and will be posted in advance. The Council will act as a single unit in the May mega-battle, essentially a 'super HQ' choice.

Interested participants will have the option of signing up for one of the six Council choices which require specific models--*or* they may create their own member of the Daemonic Council, but signing up for either a Daemon Prince or a Chaos Spawn. In the case of the former, the participant who signs for that choice MUST use the indicated model; in the case of the Daemon Princes and Chaos Spawn, players are free to use their creativity and imagination, with the caveat that their submissions must be Citadel miniatures or conversions primarily based on Citadel miniatures, and must clearly and recognizably represent the Daemon Prince or Chaos Spawn entry, using existing GW models and imagery as guidelines.

Participants must have their model completed, painted and based by Sunday, May 25th at 1pm, when they will be gathered together and displayed for the week leading up to their showcase mega-battle the following Saturday. As with the High Command Group, participants and judges from HTUD will be allowed to cast a ballot for Favorite Model, with the winner collecting a prize from HTUD and Games Workshop, and there will be random prizes distributed to eligible participants, as well.

For further information, see http://www.adeptusnorthtexas.com or HobbytownUSA Dallas.

Prepare for a storm of vengeance. Prepare for the coming of the scouring wind. Prepare for the wrath of the Daemonic Council!

HOBBYTOWNUSA DALLAS LUCKY 13s MAY PAINTING EVENT: THE DAEMONIC COUNCIL RULES

Please sign up in person at HTUD for the model you wish to complete. These models will remain yours to keep and use in your own 40K army; the only requirement is that they be submitted to HTUD in finished state by Sunday, May 25th at 1pm, where participants present will vote for their Favorite Model. The Council will then remain on display until Saturday, May 31st, where it will lead Chaos against the Imperium and the Mordant 13th in Campaign Mega-Battle Three! Specific models must be used where indicated in parentheses following; Daemonic Princes and degraded Chaos Spawn may be representative models of the participating player's choice from the Citadel Miniatures range. Event judges retain the right to disallow any model deemed inappropriate from inclusion in display, including eligibility for prizes and use in battle. Participants who sign up for a specific slot are both making a commitment to the event and denying that slot to other interested participants in turn; failure to complete the signed-for model on time could result in the participant being excluded from future Lucky 13s and other hobby events at this and related venues.

  • DAEMACHINEX, ARCH DAEMON OF CHAOS UNDIVIDED (Soul Grinder model)
  • FELLSOUL, SORCEROR-SENESCHAL OF CHAOS UNDIVIDED (Be'Lakor model)
  • GREATER DAEMON OF KHORNE (Bloodthirster model)
  • GREATER DAEMON OF SLAANESH (Keeper of Secrets model)
  • GREATER DAEMON OF NURGLE (Great Unclean One model)
  • GREATER DAEMON OF TZEENTCH (Lord of Change model)
  • DAEMON PRINCE (model of choice)
  • CHAOS SPAWN (model of choice)

Results: Lucky 13's One Road, One Ride Multiplayer Event

Fourteen players found their way to the hostile surface of the Prohibited Moon of Colfax, and survived its perils--and each other--to reach the obviously-not-natural spire sitting menacingly astride its day-to-night terminator, and unlock its secret, in the first April Lucky 13s event, One Road One Ride, at HobbytownUSA Dallas.

Players discovered that the rogue moon had been locked in stationary orbit by a tiny, brilliant and completely unstable white dwarf star (which they promptly dubbed Grombrindal). They battled over an 8'x6' Apocalypse table which represented this state, with one side overexposed by white light, solar flares and radiation and the other, across the terminator line, shrouded in night-fighting darkness. An additional unconnected table represented a warp gate at the far end of the moon's dark side, where competing vehicles could find themselves inexplicably hurled by the clash of energies at work on Colfax, and have to fight their way back.

The race to reach the mysterious spire at the moon's center was a seesaw affair, with fast vehicles like Bob's deep-striking Ultramarines land speeder claiming it quickly, but failing to retain control of it long enough to decipher the arcane wards scrawled across it, to win the game. Alliances were formed--and then broken in turn--as players tried to find the perfect tactics for reaching the objective quickly enough to have a chance to win it, but not so quickly there were enough guns still active to knock them off of it.

In the end, Ashley's Thousand Sons Defiler, Alex's Winged Hive Tyrant and Jack's Techmarine Razorback all came close, and Josh's Jade Legion Razorback (led by the wounded but still very-much-alive radical Xenos Inquisitor Rhadamanthus Goh) dropped its passengers and made a late run under the guns of alliances forged on both flanks...only to meet its fate at the claws of Brady's Carnifex, which then survived a hail of fire from every compass point on the table for over a turn to win the race for the mystery obelisk.

The climax was tremendous, as Eldar, Chaos and Space Marine guns failed to bring the monstrous creature down--leaving the last player to move in the turn, Chad, to try a sweeping tank shock with his Falcon in a final desperate gamble to dislodge the Carnifex and keep the game going. The moment heightened as every consequence, intended and unintended, was considered, and every response calculated: the Falcon crested into the difficult terrain around the objective, surviving rolls which might have brought it down; the Carnifex chose death or glory, with virtually any result but snake-eyes insuring the destruction of the Eldar skimmer--which it promptly rolled; but then everyone remembered the unpredictable energy shields around the obelisk, the roll for which displaced the Falcon back off the spire.

The Carnifex met the victory conditions, the ancient hexagrammatic wards carved into the towering spire flared brilliantly to life and then burnt out, the structure itself lost its integrity in the physical world before the surviving warriors' eyes, shimmering out of existence--and allowing a geyser of long-trapped Warp entities to scream into existence from whence they had so long been imprisoned. The secret of Colfax moon stood revealed: the entire moon was a daemonifuge, a millennia-old prison holding a gatherum of mighty daemonic entities--known as the Daemonic Council--which had once corrupted and ruled over an entire Imperial system...and with the wards and seals destroyed, the Daemonic Council was free again, to lead the Forces of Chaos against the Mordant 13th, in next month's Lucky 13s mega-battle!

As for the winning model, it reaped the benefit of proximity to so much unleashed protective energy: that specific model will benefit from a 4+ Invulnerable Save in that mega-battle next month.

Other highlights (and lowlights) of what was a fine afternoon of multi-player gaming included David's Wave Serpent suffering a crisis of confidence in the first turn and deciding NOT to race onto the objective, as he had built it to do--whereupon it was immediately immobilized and spent the rest of the game sitting in the blinding light of Grimbrindal, doing nothing; Blake's Thousand Sons Rhino racing to protect Ashley's flank and weathering an amazing volley of fire from a fusion-gun-wielding squad of Fire Dragons--only to be immobilized by a lucky shuriken-cannon shot; Kyle's Ultramarine Land Raider Terminus, undoubtedly the most dangerous weapon on the table, suffering bad break after bad break, from turns of star-blindness to actually shooting itself, when one of its rounds of fire drew a solar flare from the white dwarf star to it and rebounded lascannon fire back at it; everyone on the dark side of the moon rolling laughably for night-fighting range, but especially Blake's Thousand Sons and Jimmy's Ultramarines Predator, which stood less than two feet from each other for more than half the game without ever getting off shots; poor Forrest's Exorcist, without doubt the most-shaken vehicle in the game; and Barret, playing his Deathwatch dreadnought 'Thunderbolt' in his first-ever game of Warhammer 40K, surviving the entire battle without a scratch, despite being shot at by--at least--a Predator, a Falcon, some Striking Scorpions, a Fire Dragon Exarch with a Fire Pike and a Defiler, being assaulted by a Winged Hive Tyrant, and--in the final turn--being tank shocked by Eric's Space Wolf Land Raider...which Barret death-or-gloried and, with one lascannon shot, blew to wolfy smithereens.

There are still some kinks to work out with these 'massively-multiplayer' battles (to borrow a phrase), the down-time between turns and the general level of talk when players are not directly engaged which results, probably foremost. But some of the steps undertaken this time around--particularly the compactness of forces controlled by each participant--seemed to go a long way toward remedying some previous issues (we easily finished the game in under three hours, for example)...and the synergy which comes from having over a dozen enthusiastic hobbyists all playing toward one goal, forming and breaking allegiances and sharing (or keeping) secrets is, I think, undeniably worth it. So expect to see variants of events like this again, soon...perhaps the next time with *all* superheavies!

Meantime...

The second April Lucky 13s stamp-eligible event concludes next Sunday, as players complete and submit 1500-word-maximum short stories featuring one of their Lucky 13s Campaign-participating characters. I am hoping the entries for this event will further personalize future battles...and illuminate the nature of some of our deepening grudges.

The first May Lucky 13s event will spring *directly* from today's multi-player battle, as the Daemonic Council freed by the race to the obelisk will manifest to wreak their vengeance upon the Imperium of Man, in a painting contest to culminate Sunday, May 25th. Interested participants will be able to sign up at HobbytownUSA to submit models (which, unlike the Mordant 13th High Command, will in this case remain theirs to keep and use after), and then the entire Council will lead the Chaos assault against the Mordant 13th in the May 31st Lucky 13s Campaign mega-battle.

Sign up at HobbytownUSA Dallas for that May 31st mega-battle will be announced soon, once the specifics of the scenario are released by Games Workshop.

And watch adeptusnorthtexas.com for word of potentially a third Lucky 13s stamp-eligible event in May, which will be something completely different...