A nid’s eye view

Some more photos of our Space Marine-Tyranid apocalypse game. This time by Hive Mind Mark, who fitting with this lofty status took some good shots of the whole table.

Tyranids Defied

Citizens rejoice! The largest tyranid invasion seen in this sector has been defeated by a combined force of loyalist marines. After being pressed early by successive waves of the bio-engineered monsters, the Astartes were able to launch a counter-attack and purchase a famous and bloody victory.

NovApoc25Go big or go home. We aimed for 10,000 points a side but found we could deploy 12,500. That turns out to be a lot of bugs. The table looked great. I found it hard to take a shot that took in the whole spectacle.


The Hive Mind deployed well. By making an aggressive bid (just 7 minutes), they won the opportunity to deploy and move first. By using a strategic asset that gave most of their troops infiltrate, they not only bought themselves time to deploy they made sure that bugs would be right in marines’ faces from turn 1.


On the Imperial side there were Space Wolves, Dark Angles (including Deathwing), Imperial Fists, Ultramarines and White Scars.  A good mix of shooty, speed and close combat.

On the left flank Dark Angels and Space Wolves agreed to disagree and looked towards the tyranid menace.


Adam’s Space Wolves


Connor’s Dark Angels


Ben’s Deathwing

The right flank was held by the original battle brothers, the Sons of Dorn and Guilliman, supported by some drop-pods full of Space Wolves


Dreadnought from my Imperial Fists


“Remember Macragge” Ultramarines get stuck in

In the centre were White Scars


Cam’s White Scars – no time to shammy the mudguards, we’ve got some ‘nids to sort out

Overall command of the Astartes was taken by Azael from the Dark Angels


Warmaster Azael – Connor’s DA

The aggressive tactics by the Tyranid host worked well early on. The marines, despite setting up well back in their deployment zone, only got in one round of shooting before close combat started right along the table.




But the early waves just could not deal out enough damage and the terminators, deep striking with precision on objectives started to push through the ravening hoard.


Heading into the Imperial Shrine


And out the other side: objective secured

NovApoc23NovApoc02It wasn’t one way traffic, but at by the end of three full turns both sides had run out of reinforcements and we were running out of playing time. At that point the marines had 4 of 6 objectives and more victory points, and while the tyranids might narrow the gap if we played on an Imperial victory seemed clear.

As a player in a such a large game it is hard to get a feel for the ebb and flow across the whole battlefield so I’ve missed out on many heroic and mighty deeds from both sides.


But there is no doubting the mighty spectacle of two themed armies going toe to toe on such a big table. Lovely stuff, and the Hive Mind is already plotting its revenge …


Thanks for all for a fab day.

Apocalypse Soon

Tomorrow is the day. Or it is while I type this. It is probably in the past for you.
But the warp is like that. You only think it is the web.

I’ve had a look at the Emperor’s Tarot and we will have 12,500 points a side: Tyranids versus Space Marines. Six for Hive Mind and seven loyal defenders of humanity.

Only one gargantuan creature and no super heavies. I’ve packed every terminator I own as a prophylactic. You do not want Tyranid herpes.

While all ‘nids look the same to me, we will have five different chapters represented. In descending order of points there will be: Space Wolves, Dark Angels (including a Deathwing attachment), Imperial Fists, Ultramarines, and White Scars. By this time tomorrow we will know if it is enough to stop the tyranid invasion.

No pictures yet, but I’ve packed my camera.

I will be handing out these cards:


We always forget the finest hour rule. Always. Tomorrow I expect to see our warlords acting in suitably heroic and dramatic fashions.

To war!

Love at the end of the world

One of the great parts of wargaming is its ability to stimulate your imagination. Lots of things can achieve this, but there is something wonderfully cinematic about two well painted armies on a table laden with terrain that few other games manage. For me this is one of the reasons I like to play a couple of apocalypse games each year: the sight of two 10,000 point armies going toe-to-toe is ace.


Lots of mens = lots of carnage

Another nice feature of planning and running a game of this size is that it is a group activity. This means that instead of two or three of your friends getting together, it is 8 or 10! Apoc is a party with added dice.

Expect the wacky; and carnage

Expect the wacky; and carnage

Creating a memorable apoc takes a bit of effort, but the pay-off is worth it. Our gaming group is working towards an apoc game in a couple of weeks. From my teasers you may have guessed that it will be Tyranids versus Space Marines. I’ve done the teaser posts because I’m looking forward to the game and want to help a little to build the excitement. (I’ve not used any ‘nid photos for the simple reason I don’t have any, hence my more cryptic approach.)

Fluid situations will arise

Fluid situations will arise

The current Apocalypse rule book has some good tips on getting a game together. We don’t use them all (and discovered some for ourselves years ago), but they are worth a look early in your process.

And you'll get to find out who wins in Bloodthirster v. Baneblade

Plenty of room for the big toys

To help ensure a memorable day (for the right reasons) I suggest that you do at least the following:

  1. Get it on the calendar well in advance. Coordinating the lives of ten gamers can be daunting
  2. Plan food and beer as well as gaming. It is going to be a long day.
  3. Theme. It’s tempting to get all your toys out, but two themed armies is a wonderful sight
  4. Painted. Truly, don’t field it if it doesn’t have paint.
  5. Don’t sweat the detail too much. At 10,000 points a side it’s more the vibe. Related to this is go WYSIWYG. There is too much on the table and way too many people to have substitutes or fuss with melta-bombs you can’t see

And finally, chill. It can be a long day and while the fate of an entire planet hands the balance you’re there for fun.

And you'll get to find out who wins in Bloodthirster v. Baneblade

And you’ll get to find out who wins in Bloodthirster v. Baneblade


Tide of destruction

There is a swath of dead worlds that form a lifeless corridor through the sub-sector, perpendicular to the galactic plane. This line of planets, that otherwise lie in habitable zones, are devoid of life and even water.  Some are mere grey-goo, missing even the usual metallic and rare earth elements, as though they have been stripped and purged of all useful matter.  Imperial scholars suspect that they may be the result of an ancient rampage by a splinter-group of a larger Tyranid fleet.

Acrylic on canvas by my daugher Rose

One of the dead worlds.   Acrylic on canvas by Rose

In papers that are still classified by the Inquisition, Faith and Steel believe that xeno-archaeologists have reported finding evidence of battles having occurred on some of these dead worlds.

Consistent with the archeaological record, Imperial scholars report that planets near the zombie corridor have residual memories of a Tyranid invasion in their literature and folk lore.


Charcoal winged and fanged beast by Rose

A grave concern now exists that a larger fleet may be following in the wake of this ancient visitation. Stay tuned to Faith and Steel for the latest information.

Evidence of tyranid infestation

After battling chaos and the heretic for so long it was almost too easy to forget that other, perhaps deadlier, things are also threatening the Imperium. Information is scarce but Faith and Steel have got hold of pic-images that indicate that a hive fleet may be approaching our sector.

Image recovered from servo-drone before the feed ceased

Image recovered from servo-drone before the feed ceased

No Tyranid bioforms have been spotted but inquisitor Seluekid visited the site of the original image and confirmed a nest consistent with other tyranid infestations before his pic-feed also went dead.

Inquisitor Seluekid investigates the possible tyranid nest

Inquisitor Seluekid investigates the possible tyranid nest

Neither the inquisitor nor his retinue of 3 have been seen since.

While it is too soon for alarm, Faith and Steel recommend that you review your copy of the planetary defence booklet “Look up and live” and make sure your emergency action plan is current.

A sketch of Inquisitor Seluekid by one of his cutter's crew.

A sketch of Inquisitor Seluekid by one of his cutter’s crew.

Stay tuned for further announcements.