Writing as catharsis…

Not everyone is running out of time in their own mind; but we all are. From 1997 to 2002 I wrote a decent amount every day- even had something that resembled a blog for some thought, and an e-mail list for religious musings. However something happened when I went to college and writing took a back seat to other pursuits for many reasons. But the world is wide enough for my various hobbies and recently I have been inspired to re-engage that part of my mid tier brain to get back to the written word. Tonight writing two full pages in my notebook was a welcome return to form.

Three years ago I wrote enough code to bring systems in to existence you’d think I really was running out of time. Then last year I did. I saw what my life was without the pressure of writing code or prose and it wasn’t comfortable or enjoyable. It’s a feeling that I look forward to getting back to. Not all writing is prose after all, and code is art.

Pokémon Generation Slugfest

Enjoyment level of Pokémon generations for me:

  • Gen 2 – 92/100 (Crystal)
  • Gen 6 – 91/100 (X)
  • Gen 1 – 85/100 (Blue)
  • Gen 8 – 80/100 (Shield)
  • Gen 5 – 78/100 (Black 2)
  • Gen 4 – 68/100 (Pearl)
  • Gen 7 – 38/100 (Moon)
  • Gen 3 – 25/100 (Sapphire)

There’s some cool things in each generation, but Gen 7 and 3 didn’t grab me or really make me want to play- mechanics and story both fell a bit flat. For whatever reason the pacing in each game felt off. Apparently I don’t like Pokémon games set on islands? These are also the two generations after my favorite ones- I’m willing to admit there may be a bit of “letdown syndrome” at work here.

Silver was very enjoyable, but something about Crystal took the game to a whole new level- hours and hours were spent making my Tyranitars the absolute best they could be! As for X, if I could have found a good way to stream “Wonder Trade Runs” I very much would have (the ways I tried just didn’t work out for it to still be enjoyable); it’s the only generation I tried speed running without an emulator.

Update: Shield came out and it was really, really fun! The pseudo multiplayer required encounters took out a little bit of the overall fun, but the mechanics are well refined and it was amazing being able to play on my TV.

T’au Empire Rambling First Impressions

I was deathly ill when the codex came out and didn’t get any games in until today really. So after three full games and some fractional games moving things around here’s some initial thought…
Most important thing to remember about this codex: this army is now CP thirsty, maybe even more than any other army.
Do you want Hammerheads, etc?
  • Brigade of T’au Sept – might as well since Longstrike is T’au Sept
Want to use Ghostkeels and Stealth Suits offensively?
  • Take a Viorla Vanguard to compliment a T’au/Bork’an Brigade/Battalion
Want to put a bunch of Breachers up in someones face and have them get charged?
  • Go T’au! Overwatch on 5+
Fire Warriors and Breachers are so cheap for 5, even 10, that they seem to be the star of the codex really. Many stratagems are squarely in their reach and designed to make a decent unit that much better.
Firesight Marksman and Sniper Drones are the “special secret” to making Brigades awesome CP generators. Kroot Hounds make it even better, but there are some decent things to put in fast attack that aren’t just going to give up kill points.
Now that drones aren’t just ablative wounds, they require a roll, they’re a bit less auto-spam or auto-include.
Ghostkeels look like an MVP unit, but they are hard to include if you want a super spammed amount of CP- not that much cheaper than the very buffed up Riptide, and their drones are going to get shot out of the air ASAP. I still want to run two, but I can see that going to one very quickly is going to be something I’ll have to contemplate.
Stealth Suits are still good; opponents seem to under rate them. They also benefit from what I feel is a great stratagem for a full sized squad of Stealth Suits: Hot-Blooded. If the group is at full strength, with a Shas’vre with a Markerlight, that’s two markerlights and 40 S5 shots hitting on a  4+ re-rolling 1’s (if the things that its shooting have a single markerlight hit). You could get more shots and possibly more damage from a Breacher team at 10” or less due to the -1 AP, but the Stealth Suits move a bit faster and slightly more durable.
Dark Knight
Sunshark Bomber is still a decent flying platform. But with how CP thirsty the rest of the army is it’s hard to slot these anywhere.
Riptide Wall is just an open-top transport now, but it’s very easy to attack and blow off the table.
Mid Tier
Riptides are solid “meh” still due to the cost. They need a decent amount of support but can be durable mid field threats by taking a mortal wound every turn.
Vespids. I want them to be better than they are, I admit that. But they can naturally deep strike and have a decent assault weapon. A new model and even a mini codex could make these guys amazing though.
Things that make you go, huh…
Broadsides are a trap. They are cheaper, they have some dakka, but they’re a trap. There’s got to be some stratagem and placement combo that I can’t quite seem to figure out, but so far they have just been a long ranged trap not getting their points back at all.
Stormsurges are expensive and don’t benefit from a lot of other rules. They’re possibly a good mid-field distraction thing with an EWO (early warning override) just to mess with deep strikes, but probably still better as a back of the backfield artillery platform.
You can make a list that has 21 or more CP. Spending the time to see if you can needs to be tempered with the amount of time to figure out if you should!

Hero Hammer – A Soup of Tournament Kind

If you’re going to go for soup might as well go for full fun!

  • SupCom of Adeptus Custodes bikes
  • SupCom of
    • Celestine
    • Greyfax
    • Lord Hector Rex
    • An Assassin
  • Brig or Battalion of something fun!

This gives some fast moving glass hammers, a smattering of psyker defenses, and something random from there. That core gives us about half the points of the army at 965.

So what do we take to back this up?


Another hero has joined the fight! There’s enough space for Cawl in a Battalion with some decent range support.

Alternatively a couple Priests can take his spot in a Stygies Battalion, making Dragoons another fast moving hammer that’s not entirely made of glass in the shooting phase.

Grey Knights

Strike Squads for days! Because we wanted more psychic defense, really…


We require more men…no, really…

Space Marines

Scouts. No really, scouts give a ton of battlefield control and actually make this probably the best tactical pairing.

Grey Knights – A Guarding List In The Making

This year I’m taking the plunge back in to wonderful world of Warhammer 40k Tournaments! More on that later, in the mean time- what to play and why.
Because I’m a glutton for punishment I’ll be playing Grey Knights- I’m not looking to make it to the final rounds or anything, just to go have a good time and good games. To that end I have a few goals:
  • Work in a theme or story
  • Have allies that work with the story
  • Use competitive units
  • Have units that will get people to enjoy seeing them
  • As few “conversions” as possible
At this point I’ve decided on a small narrative called, “The Return to Armageddon” for this year. That means Steel Legion allies with as many Grey Knight power armor suits as possible using the Guard Armageddon Regiment. This doesn’t shore up the Grey Knights lack of high power shots as much as other regiments may be able to, but it does give a nice buffer and access to some slightly more durable vehicles (as points allow).

Core units

  • 2 GMNDK
  • 2 Squads of Paladins with an Apothecary
  • 3 Strike Squads
  • 2 Battalions of Guard

Concluding the matter

With very specific guidelines that doesn’t leave a lot of room for anything else, but it does make for a rather defensive core to get to later rounds on. As long as both sides play fast enough, that’s full point allocations!