Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A Return to Tau?


No painting or Skaven today, but just wanted to reflect on a great weekend of gaming...
...with Warhammer 40K!  (Yes, I know this is a Skaven blog, but at the bottom of this entry I'll get to the point by asking for your opinion on something...)

As you may or may not know, I got back into Warhammer via a rediscovery of Warhammer 40K. The 40K universe was a passion of mine that first took hold when I was a teenager and then briefly lapsed  (for around 20 years or so?) before being resurrected by a friend who casually asked me if I had ever heard of Warhammer and would I be interested in fighting some battles?

Anyway, I haven't played 40K for what seemed like months (work, travel etc.) when finally some friends and I were able to get together for a 3000 points per-side 4-way battle.
Space Marines (1,000 Points) and Tau (2,000 Points)
Tyranids (2,000 Points) and Orks (1,000 Points)
So, two horde armies against one extremely "Shooty" army (Tau) and a "sort of shooty" army (vanilla space marines) locked in battle in the "Dawn of War" scenario and annihilation - excellent match up and massive fun! (If a bit slow. I AM the slowest 40K player in the world.)

The purpose of this post isn't to do a battle-report (as it would take hours to write) but more to share the experience. So what did I enjoy?

1.) Using models that hadn't been used for a while was great. It really re-motivated me to keep working on the Skaven. The fact that I had spent so much time painting a large army previously now means that I know I can do it again! (I'm looking at you unpainted Skaven slaves...)

2.) Re-visiting a Codex and rules that I hadn't thought about for months was a challenge, but a good one! I remembered the tips and lessons that I had learned the hard way over the last year. (Not forgetting lessons learned from the community over at Advanced Tau Tactica - surely one of the best resources anywhere for Tau players.

3.) Opening my army case for the first time in months and lining the models up in a row. HA! That sounds really childish but I suspect I am not the only wargamer who enjoys that. What a return to childhood and simpler times! (playing on the floor with green plastic Army Men?!)

4.) The tactical challenge and fun of working with an army I don't know very well. Unlike many 40K players, I didn't start with an Assault on Black Reach set. Although I am familiar with the Space Marines backstory, unit types and Codex (it's a fun read) I have never collaborated with a "regular" Space Marines army.

5.) Perhaps best of all, the fun of socializing with a good group of people who have the same hobby, and take the same attitude to it as me. (Fun comes first, sportsmanship and laughs!)

Now of course, there was something that I didn't enjoy at all...



So, having played 40K last weekend, I find myself asking the following question, which is mainly aimed at those who play both 40K and WFB...
"What are the key differences, if any, between the two systems that one has to learn and adapt to when moving from 40K to WFB? (or vice-versa?)

All thoughts welcome!


Just for fun, some photos my Tau below...


  1. Hey Squeek,

    as a person who hasn´t been that long in warhammer, or the whole games universe yet, thus i can´t really give you answers to your question. I however was quite it doubt when i started for warhammer fantasy, and I thus also asked the local games workshop cleric for more information on both universes. Basically he told me that in 40K, all models do something in the turn. (If they don't cut each other apart with chainswords, they blow each other's heads off with bolt guns). And of course, in 40k you dont work with blogs, but rather with individual models, which has a flavour of its own.

    personally, I'm dedicated to the warhammer fantasy world since I've been a sucker for fantasy since I was a child. The world where everything is possible, and the scenerio where those with a brave heart and a sword in hand can save the day, still enlightens a fire within me. Even where I ever to quite gaming, I would still very much enjoy putting the army in a showcase, as it represents the 'fantasy' in me.

    having said that, I must say that I personally think that games workshop has done a better job with 40k in respects to 'broadening' the world. I mean the great job that the 'Black Library' has done up to this day, their 40k novels really tend to blow you back and put you right there in the crossfire. Though I've never played 40k, after reading Dan Abnetts novels of 'Gaunt and his Ghosts', the imperial guard now has a soft spot in my heart, and i see myself picking up that particular army when new models arrive.

    Basically, i love fantasy, and thats why warhammer fantasy keeps me there, but the novels of 40k makes that world more than just a little interesting.
    (though I Cant help but to secretly add that i hope you continue with your great skaven horde, as there arent many blogs over the net which provides such sound painting articles).

    I didnt really anser your question, but I think i've rambled more than enough ~ sorry.

    Best regards,


  2. Hi Shendar - thanks for your post.
    I know what you mean about the attraction of Fantasy Battles. It kind of makes the whole fantasy world come alive and everyone can be a hero right?!
    40K is lots of fun and as you say the backstory is very well developed, so that adds a lot of options too.
    As to the Skaven blog...don't worry I'm going to keep on doing this for a long time because I still have so much left to paint!

  3. 40k has the best story in science fiction, in my opion.

    Rules wise?

    -No 'movement' value. You move in increments of 6" based on your unit type.
    -No magic phase, psychic attacks are shooting
    -No negative modifiers to shooting
    -Everything can shoot for the most part
    -Assault at the end of the turn, 6" or 12" based on what you are.
    -Potential 12" move, in any direction, which is a move, shoot, assault.
    - +1 attack on the charge
    -No negatives to armor save based on strength, only power weapons.
    -Fearless as opposed to unbreakable and stubborn (stubborn exists in 40k though)
    -Vehicles add a whole new element to the game...
    -Reserves a plenty, deep strikers and outflankers

  4. @Ben English - thanks for the comments.
    The things you mention illustrate why I think (hope?) that the question in this entry was a good one. Even having read the WFB 8th rulebook lots, I still haven't mentally compared the WFB system side-by-side with 40K. Depressingly, I'm sure the differences you mention will contribute to me messing up in my first few games!


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