Saturday, July 16, 2011

War and More: Snowed in at the Spring Thaw

Hello fellow wargamers! After being inspired by writing my first article for Rankings Hq about the S.Q.U.I.G.S Fantasy Tournament a few months back, I got invited by my friend and local hobby shop owner to write a tournament report for the 40k Spring Thaw tournament that occured in May.

Future Articles from this point?: I fiqure that from this point I will try my best to cover most of the events in my area that I can travel to, as you may have guessed snow can be an issue in my area of Northern Alberta, Canada. By naming my articles from this point on it will be easier for people to find them online, and gives the articles a sense of ownership and purpose that people can enjoy.

Now I used to play alot of 40k a few years back (Not so much anymore) and knew how the 5th edition ruleset changed from 4th Edition, so I decided that it would be neat to do an event recap. I currently play alot of Warhammer Fantasy now and I'm lovin every moment! But no matter how much I may play warhammer, at my core I'm still a 40k fanboy at heart and enjoy watching the games and playing the occasional game once in a while.

Before the Thaw:

Usually the events at the store are around 20 people and usually very fun, but
little did I know... that this simple tournament would explode into the most exciting and important event that our store would hold this year! 

Tournament Guidelines

1) HAVE FUN! Remember, this is a GAME. Settle disputes quickly and know the quirky rules that your army has and where to find them to show your opponent. Judges will be around to help with interpretation on rules.

2) Your army force may be 1500 points maximum using standard army selection (NO Imperial armour, Chapter Approved, and Apocalypse unites).

3) Your force must be made using the most current rules available.

4) The rule of WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) will be in effect. Please try your best to follow it. (you MAY be penalized on severity)

5) Special Character MAY be used.

6) Players are expected to conduct themselves in a polite and respectful manner; unsportsmanlike conduct will not be tolerated and may result in expulsion.

7) Players should bring their own dice, rulers, rules, templates, books and miniatures. Labels on your stuff are a good idea.

8) Army lists MUST be written up for submission by May 1st. Players should have 3 copies of their list when they arrive: one to play with one backup and one to resubmit to check for changes (and I will be checking). There are extra tournament points for early and accurate army list submissions.

9) All games are going to be from the 40K main book.

10) Terrain on each table will be setup and will NOT be moved be players. Rules for what counts as difficult/impassable terrain are to be agreed by the players before each game.

11) To register: drop into Wonderland Toy & Hobbies with entrée fee and army list or e-mail Jeremy Goldsack at with army list and any questions. Fees are $15 prepay or $20 day of Tournament

Schedule: May 15 (Saturday) May 16 (Sunday)
9:30 – 10:30am: Show up      9:30 – 10:30am: Show up
10:30- 12:00: Game #1        10:30- 12:00: Game #4
12:00 – 1:00: lunch              12:00 – 1:00: lunch
1:00 – 2:30: Game #2            1:00 – 2:30: Game #5
2:30 – 3:00: Break                 2:30 – 3:00: Break
3:00 – 4:30: Game #3            3:00 – 4:30: Game #6
                                                5:00 (ish): Awards

Please note the games may end at variable times but MUST start on time. There is some time leeway for people to finish things up if they wish to forfeit their lunch or break time.

The Waaagh reaches Critical Mass: Now because of the success of our local Facebook group and the start of the first North Peace Warhammer Fantasy Tournament Circuit, players were excited to do the same with Warhammer 40k. Little did we know that we had gotten the attention of players from other regions in Canada too. Players from both B.C and North West Territories want to come to the event....! For these players wanting to travel great distances, and I mean great distances (Just look at the map of Canada...its ok I'll wait, go look at Wikipedia....look for Yellow Knife and Grande Prairie). Pretty soon this little tournament.....exploded with over 30 people wanting to come....

The 11th Hour: Now on the thursday night before the weekend of the tournament, my friend and local store owner Jason Richards talked with some GW reps from Edmonton. Turns out they wanted to turn the event into an actual Ard Boyz event...! For those of you who don't know what Ard Boyz is, its a massive tournament circuit for warhammer that allows players to particpate in larger Ard Boyz events across the country. The top three players from our tournament would get a private invite to join the semi-finals later this year. So now we have more people then expected and an offical league event...! Talk about random....Funny thing is it gets even more random.

3+ Saves, Lots of Power Armour: Now with the release of the new Blood Angels Army Book Codex, Cough. Marine Fever was everywhere, about under half the armies there were  marine armies of some sort, while 2/3rds of the armies had at least a universal 3+ armour save. Although there was a strong showing for the boys in power armour there was however a great deal of variety still at the tournament. Funny thing is though, there wasn't a single Tyranid army to be seen. I think the new book is a decent codex that can still be competitive (Even with the carnifax nerf), but there wasn't even a single nid....This is the first time since I've wargamed that there hasn't been any, weird?

The Calm: Now would you believe it if I told you at the time we were having a heat wave in Grande Prairie at the time? Now in Grande Prairie we find that 35 Degrees Celsius is pretty warm, since during the winter we get as low as Minus 40. Lawns were being mowed, ice cream melting, you name it the weather was beautiful. Foolishly I thought (truly the summer must be starting), Boy! was I wrong. Later on Friday we got word that because of severe snow storms in Yellow Knife, some of our competitors could not come to the event. "No problem we still have 25 people coming" I thought.

The Event: The Tournament was amazing, all the players were quiet during their games (except for the occasional WAAAGH, of course) my friends and fellow wargamers among them as well.

Armies of Interest: Mike Sweetman's, Beautifully painted Ulthwe Eldar Army had a very interesting rust wraithbone approach.
Dustin Gwin's amazing Chaos Space Marines(no Pic, lol) and his amazing chaos towers.
The Mechanized Metal of all the Armies at the event.
Speaking of Metal: Now the last mission of the event called for the opposing armies to destory their opponents vehicle support. Now since most factions in 40k use vehicles now and there was a strong Mech theme going on, with no Tyranids in sight, this mission proved to be the Highlight for many players at the event.

The Storm: The whole event was just fantastic with many different players from varied backgrounds and age groups coming together to enjoy a hobby that is great on so many levels. Now here are the results:

Darren PerraChaos Space Marines, mechn/a n/a n/a 1
Darnell GrossSpace Marines, mechn/a n/a n/a 2
Jaron LeclercSpace Wolves, mechn/a n/a n/a 3
John MoutraySpace Marines, mechn/a n/a n/a 4
Steven VigBlood Angels, half and halfn/a n/a n/a 5
Chris KochendorferSpace Wolves, mechn/a n/a n/a 6
Shane DelemontTau, mechn/a n/a n/a 7
Darcy BromlingEldar, foot infantry...AVATAR for the winn/a n/a n/a 8
Dave BeaudoinOrks, mechn/a n/a n/a 9
Richard GauthierImperial Guard, mechn/a n/a n/a 10
Jesse BetnarTau, mechn/a n/a n/a 11
Michael GordonNecrons, infantry of course with 2 monolithsn/a n/a n/a 12
Trask CarrollOrks, infantry with lots, lots and lots of gunsn/a n/a n/a 13
Pierre FillionBlood Angels, half and halfn/a n/a n/a 14
Mike SweetmanEldar, infantry with jet bike supportn/a n/a n/a 15
Steve WoosterSpace Marines, half and halfn/a n/a n/a 16
Dustin GwinChaos Space Marines, mechn/a n/a n/a 16
Derek TaugherSisters of Battle, mechn/a n/a n/a 18
Jacob VigImperial Guard, mechn/a n/a n/a 19
Now 26 people participated in the event but only 19 wanted to go on Rankings Hq. FYI

The Aftermath:
Those Top three players are also the grand winners and now are invited to the Ard Boyz semi-finals which will take place later this year. Also we have created enough buzz now we even have American players wanting to come to next year.

The Snow finally COMES down: The following week after the tournament the weather took a turn for the worse and out of the blue, tons of buckets of wet snow falls like fluffy explosions on the Grande Prairie. People are getting stuck on the roads and the snow takes everyone by surprize. My internet connection (wireless) becomes disabled by the weather, and remains disconnected till yesterday, lol. Now the snow only lasted for 5 days but it caused so much damage around town that people who just planted crops and gardens have been set back for weeks. I look outside now at the lush green field outside my house and can hardly believe we had knee deep snow only a few weeks ago.

Finally I hope you the reader have enjoyed my little tale of random chance and mishap. I will be covering many other Canadian events in the near future and hope the weather stays reasonable, lol. Also if you see any Misteaks Mistakes, please let me know and I'll see you guys next time.

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