Tournament Wrap Up
So, I’m being lazy. However, my tournament co-conspirator–and a very important one-third of the team behind the Horus Heresy tournament (as well as the 14th Black Crusade we ran in June, 2010) just updated her blog, giving the run down on the elements running (sometimes behind the scenes of) our tournament–believe me though, we use the word “tournament” rather loosely when we talk about this event.
I decided to just re-post what Teri entered for today, seeing as how if I were handling the same topic today, I’d just paraphrase everything she wrote (plus she calls me “brilliant” –I seem to always dodge the accolades, so getting it down on my blog means it’s real….right?)
Here’s Teri’s March 3, 2011 post:
This past weekend myself and two of the most brilliant hobbyists I know (Nathan, my husband and Kyle, a good friend) hosted another narrative campaign event – the Massacre on Istvaan V. (I’ll stand by Istvaan over Isstvan on the sole reason that Google brings up 16 million hits on the former and only a measly 23K on the later).
Loosely based on the events of the Drop Site Massacre during the Horus Heresy, it was the most off-the-wall 40K type of event any of us had ever hosted, and looking back, I like to think that all the choices we made paid dividends in fun for our players. The mechanics are a little convoluted, but here’s the run down of the stuff we told people ahead of time:
- This was a Space Marine only event – only Space Marines or variants thereof were allowed to play.
- Composition would be scored and would not only effect players’ scores, but also campaign mechanics. (Her post about comp scoring.)
- Players needed to bring a 1500 point force, with a auxiliary detachment of 250 points
- A player’s personal score was comprised of their battle points, a painting score and a sportsmanship score. Votes earned you extra points.
- Players would play on one of two factions – Loyalists for the Emperor, and Traitors for the Warmaster.
Here are the few mechanics we revealed to players on the day of the tournament:
- There were only 3 zones of battle – 1 vanguard and 2 flanks. Flank games were played at 1500 points and Vanguards at 1750.
- Starting with the the player with the lowest win-loss record and the lowest composition tier, players got to either choose the table which they played on OR choose their opponent. If a opponent was challenged, the challenged opponent would choose the table which games were played (allowing players to effectively “choose” the size of their games, if they weren’t doing so well in the event).
- Each player received a sealed envelope for their missions. Each envelope had the same mission set up but a different set objectives for each player, depending on their faction. Players only revealed their objectives to their opponent after the game was complete. Players “won” by having more objectives than their opponent.
- Earning objectives also earned players tokens. Some of the benefits players could buy with their tokens included re-rolls (tokens to be given to their opponent) and killpoints added to their score. Moreover, players could pool their tokens and get battle-zone wide effects, including calling down of a Primarch (we featured 6, with each with unique and special Primarch Rules).
- Kill Points would be the only measure to determine which faction was winning, but didn’t at all factor into your personal score.
- Turncoat opportunities were presented to players (as a surprise) after games 2, 4 and 5. Turncoats took their killpoints with them to the other faction if/when they turned.
As with 14th Black Crusade, everyone on the winning faction won a prize.
We took a lot of risks – who’d have thought to allow players to pick their pairings, or run double-blind mission objectives.
All in all, I think I came away assured that people had a great time. In the meantime, we’ll be scheming away to create another epic event.
As seen in the photos above, not only did we offer players the ability to field a Primarch, there were even a couple incidents where Primarchs went toe to toe–a tricky proposition considering before a round would start, the seven players in that zone had to each nominate which turn the Primarch would arrive on their own table (one player would dibs his Turn 1, another would dibs his Turn 2 …etc–meaning the Primarch would only show up on seven tables, and might never show up on the seventh table if the players weren’t able to keep the game going into turn seven. This was done per faction, per zone.). This meant two Primarchs meeting on the battlefield required two players to each nominate the same turn (I think with seven tables in a zone, that makes it a one-in-forty-nine chance of happening). So, yeah, getting Primarchs to meet each other on the same table was kind of akin to getting planets to line up: quite doable, but it was more likely to not happen than anything else.
What wasn’t mentioned in Teri’s post toady (because she mentioned it elsewhere) was that, following 40k canon, the Space Marine legions aligned with the Warmaster Horus won the engagement on Isstvan V. But it wasn’t that cut and dry –no matter what some of the Loyalist players were saying.
The Loyalist Marines scored a total of 844 Kill Points trying to fight their way off of the planet in hopes of bringing word to the Emperor about Horus’s treachery.
The marines who followed Horus scored a total of 869 Kill Points –close indeed! Close enough to believe that six Space Marines escaped to Terra and brought sufficient warning to the Emperor.
(The killer part of this is that had just one or two players NOT switched sides from Loyalist to Traitor, the Imperial faction might have won the tournament!)