Thursday, September 3, 2009


The controversy

It looks like there is a lot a talk on the blogs about the list/army that won BoLScon.

The list was posted over at the BoLS blog for everyone to see and then everyone reacted to the list.

To save you the trouble of clicking on the link, here is the list:

Super Winged Choppy Tyrant

Foot Tyrant, Dual Devourers and 2 Guards

3x 20 Improved (WS, Str, In) Hormagaunts

8 Spinegaunts, Without Number


3 Zoanthropes

2x Carnifex – Barbed Strangler / Venom Cannon

A lot of people have different reaction to this list. Over at the YTTH blog the infamous Stelek berated the owner of the list, the whole BoLSCon because a list like that won. He went on in his usual style questioning the quality of the competition, and how the local armies would beat that list.

The thing you have to know about Stelek is things are either black or white with him. There is no grey. Units and equipment either work or they don't and he dismisses it. There was a player that did well with Tau in his local 'Ard Boyz tournament and he dismissed his whole list and my association the player because he had flamers on some models. Stelek has made up his mind and flamers are bad, and nothing can change his mind. Stelek's narrow viewpoint is close-mindedness of different units and tactics are one of his weaknesses.

Then The_King _Elessor also went off on this list on The Mind War blog:

He made Stelek seem calm and dispationate, that that is saying something!

Then of course The Blood of Kittens (Whom I am starting to enjoy) then jumped on The_King_Elessor, and there was a big argument about this army.

The_King _Elessor backed down a bit when engages by the BoLS crew here:

But there is no doubt that a lot of people were underwhelmed by the winning Tyranid list.

My Thoughts

Do you know what I thought when I saw this army posted? I could win with this army.

The army has a lot of strengths. Let's look at the core: Hormagaunts.

He upgraded them to uber-gaunts by giving them the only upgrades that matter…WS, STR and INT. So want you have is a pack of 60 gaunts that can charge between 19"-24" and hit hard because of the upgrades. Let's look at the gaunts offence. On the charge you get 60 attacks per unit, which means against marines they will hit first, the gaunts will then hit 40 times doing 20 wounds and killing around 7 marines. Not to shabby at all and that is without the Lictor who I imagine is there for the most part to add his feeding tendrils, but I will leave him out.

Now let's look at killing them. Gaunts are fast. So fast and you will not have a chance to kill them without a great deal of trouble. The reason why is that you can't rapid fire them, or hit them with any real damage unless you have some big blasts.

The other units are things that you need to make the army work. You need synapse for the gaunts. You have 2 hive tyrants and 3 zoanthropes to give you good coverage. Hormagaunts do have the habit of running forward and out of synapse, and they have a winged hive tyrant to try to keep up with them, but with the 5th edition morale rules, but once they launch there assault they should do a lot more damage in assault and do not have to worry about running.

Lictor? I barely knew her! Although a bit over priced, he has a lot of good rules that compliment the army. He has feeder tendrils to have the Gaunt re-roll failed rolls to wound, and he can tie up shooty units in that are hiding in the back of the board and kill those pesky vehicles that are giving you trouble. They have improved in this role in 5th edition because most of the tanks in the rare are stationary, and you hit rear armor, they have gotten a big boost.

Carnifexs are always good. You shoot vehicles and although they can't kill them like they use to, they can keep them stunned which is all you have to do for some armies. Then they can also assault with strength 9 and 2d6 penetration.

The Zoanthropes are good for synapse because they are a lot harder to kill that you would think, and also they are good for shooting a few random shots down field. I think using them for the psychic choir has kind of died down in 5th. As far as the synapse goes, there are a lot of people who go gaunt heavy and forget about synapse and so what I do is just go after synapse and if I can't kill it all, what is left starts to head for cover, and they can't do what they want to do.

So over all, I think the army works. I would not mind taking it to an RTT and seeing what would happen.


  1. Now its Ard Boyz Finals bashing.

  2. I can't wait till they see that you won the Battlefoam Wild West Shootout, that should make for some interesting reading.

  3. I saw the same army at the Big Waagh this year and it didn't do so great there. I'm not saying it's not a good army but it just doesn't seem that good on paper. The conversions (admech?) are not to my taste either. There were some very good players at the Big Waaagh so I would have expected him to do better based on his performance at BoLScon.


  4. Becareful, now the beast is going to lash out on you

  5. I have no intention to argue, but why the list surprised me that it won -

    It's weakness is it's "best asset" of Troops killing via assault is they have no Flesh Hooks outside the lone Lictor?

    Hormagaunts - Discussed: Lack of Flesh Hooks means the opponent can set up in cover and shoot from there, be happily charged. The mech aspect comes into play where the transports tank shock these into nice lil' tight wads for templates. Sure I can rapid fire them by doing this, drive up, drop off in face, there we go?

    Carnies can stun and kill a vehicle after 3/4 turns of walking at it. (Cuz obviously you aren't running so you can shoot to keep the vehicle from moving, or am I wrong? I played Nids way back)

    Lictor - Not only does it currently get harmed by a Dangerous Terrain check when he comes in, he can't "hold" stuff up anymore. It's how assaults are built now, the thing either wins big and overruns or dies itself. Only thing it can hold up are Space Marines who fall back or Fearless units... It's not like he's ignored either because if you know Nids, you wanna get rid of him 'cuz of his Tendrils, as you yourself pointed out. He's not hard to get rid of, sadly.

    Zoanthropes - Hardy until they get the anti tank fire at them, then even cover drops to the amount people are fielding, I'm sure you agree.

    So, while surprised this did well, probably the best account of General > List. But reasons why it can and should've not done AS WELL are pointed out.

  6. Still waiting for the beast to appear...



  7. The beast is just a hater. He hated your army you won the 'Ardboys with, the hated the BolsCon winning army, and he hated the list of mine that won the Wild West Shootout.

    It is easy to sit and talk crap about winning armies. It is hard to leave Utah and play in a real tournament and get beat down and shatter the illusions of your followers.