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Goatboy 40K Fever Dream: ATCs Fight for the Meta

11 Minute Read
Jul 24

Goatboy here to talk about my first 8th tourney and the meta I see creeping into the new casserole that is 8th edition.

Goatboy here again and today I want to talk about the first major 8th edition tournament I have played so far.  I got another one this next week as well – but that will be for a future article when I end up coming back.  This time let’s talk about ATC, the butt kicking I received, and the things I see creeping into the new casserole that is 8th edition.  I enjoyed myself as best as I could with a list I wasn’t very happy with.  I think I didn’t put enough effort in trying to convince my team on my desire to bring a “bad” guy list which is my fault. Life got in the way with work being nutty, kid being nutty, and needing time for family before this 2 weeks of event hopping.  Oh well – at least at the BAO I got a bad guy army I just finished.

My 1st 8th Tourny

But enough about that – let me give a broad overview of what I saw and my thoughts on it.  First of all – there was a ton of spam.  If you could take a cheap and efficient unit – you took it 10+ times at this event.  I saw so many Razorbacks, Storm Ravens (article # 3 or 4? who knows but I am sure someone is “counting”), Exalted Flamers, Brimstone Horrors, Command Squads, and the dreaded [email protected] [email protected]  The ability to take non tax units in detachments really added up to a lot of copy and pasted options throughout every army.  Heck all the ones that kicked the crap out of me had more the 3 choices of something and usually it was something putting the hurt to my poor Space Marines.  Heck I had 5 devastator squads as well so I didn’t help things at all.  After this event there was a lot of chatter that will probably see something at some point to discourage this or make it not show up in Matched Play.  I get the feeling something like say – you have to take a Battalion and then you can do 2 of the other choices?  Or limit everything to an 0-3 choice – but again that can cause issues later on as we start to see more “army faction” based detachments that need you to only take your army in a detachment to receive the proper gifts of butting kicking powers.  I do think once we see more books coming out will see the overall design goal and again I think this game won’t be the same as soon as we get closer to the end of the year with 10 books and a “Warlord Handbook” coming out to rebalance.

Keyword Abuse

Right now I think the biggest issue is the Keyword mechanics abuse.  Did you know the Keyword Imperium shows up over 300 times?  Think about that for a moment that a Imperium Army has access to over 300 units in just the normal game.  This isn’t counting Forgeworld – this is just a normal game.  I saw a ton of armies with 3 acolytes as troops in a Battalion to activate 3 Storm Ravens and get you 3 Command Points.  That one Keyword seems to really throw a wrench in building “expected” army lists as the other Factions don’t nearly have that many options.  I think Chaos, Eldar, and Nids are next and they are a 3rd of the amount of choices the Imperium has.  The Necrons and Orks just don’t have that many options.  But it isn’t like Orks need help as my teammate Bill took it to every opponent and won all his games.  Who said Orks were the poops?  How about 30 Boyz hopping into the warp, and popping out to crush your soul.

8th’s Proto-Meta

Let’s do a quick brief of the armies I faced to give you an idea on how the meta seems to be shaping.  I didn’t play the same type of army twice and I have forgotten a lot of names beyond a few guys I either already know, or have a distinct memory of due to an amazingly painted army (Hi Mark – your Marines look awesome as I put bullets into all of them).  Just a trigger warning for all of those Spam hating people – this article will contain a lot of Spam.  Also if you have a Salt issue you might want to stop reading.

Goatboy’s List

My List – which wasn’t very good due to the match ups I got – but hey everyone was prepared for something like this.

Heavy Detachment
3 Units of 5 Devastators with 4 Heavy Bolters, Armored Cherub
2 Units of 5 Devastators with 3 Missile Launchers and 1 Lascannon, Armored Cherub


Flyer Wing
3 Storm Ravens, Hurricane Bolters X 2, TWL Lascannon, TWL Hvy Bolter

Lord of War
Roboute Himself

Round 1 – Mr. 5th Edition Tony Kopach with 3 Units of Conscripts, Some Commissar,s like 6 or so drop Scion units with 2 Melta units and the rest plasma, 4 Taurox’s, 4 Units of Ratling Snipers, and some Primus Psykers.  I think that is it – just a lot of bodies.  Mission had multiple objectives and Kill Points.

I don’t remember the mission as I got my teethed kicked in – but I did get first blood as he couldn’t hide one Taurox behind the massive Wall I needed.  This was at least a somewhat normal looking list beyond a few – too many choices options. I think the drop Scions were the troop ones so they weren’t all command squads like  the initial oh crap this is too good phase happened when the new edition came out.  Still I shot and killed 1 Taurox and some Ratlings, Tony dropped in all his Scions and the first hit 3 times with melta, wounded all 3 times, and rolled 3 6’s for damage.  The next one did 8 wounds to another Raven and then the Plasma only needed 2 squads to murder out the last one.  This left me with just a ton of guys sitting on a rock as they shoot bullets at the wave of Prisoners that came for my goodies.  Oh Roboute failed his 4+ to stand back up again with a Reroll.

Things I learned – I think Conscripts shouldn’t get orders and I should have had more bodies to compete with things like this and this list is really boring.  Also a reroll 4+ is not the same as a 2+ no matter what the internet says.  Lascannons also started their process of failing to wound all the time even with a reroll.


Round 2 – Mark with an amazingly painted Marine army.  Awesome Yellows and just really put my mismatched no painted army to shame.  He was also playing Stormravens – the Blood Angel kind and had 5 drops to my 4 drops.  For those not playing ITC – ATC kept the rule if you drop first you go first.  I went first and that should tell you how it went.  He had 2 Dreads, Lemartes, some Assault squads, and a Callidus Assassin.  They all looked amazing and made me feel bad for not bringing a painted list.  Mission had objectives but it was over by turn 3.

Well Mark knew he had to seize to win – which he did not and I killed all his Ravens and a unit of guys turn 1.  I think killed both Dreadnoughts, the Assassin (who failed a charge), and some more guys.  Then I flew over and killed the last squad with 3 Ravens because if I don’t have a reroll my Ravens don’t really hit that much.  Mark was a great guy and while I won this wasn’t a feel good moment for me.  But at least I met a new player who I will hopefully see again with more insanely painted models

Round 3 – Name Escapes me but he had a crazy army.  35 Conscripts, the Saint, Bjorn, Samuel on his Bike, Greyfax, 3 Primus Psykers, 5 or 6 Eversors, 2 Callidus, and 3-4 Culexius.  I think that was it – just a crap ton of Imperial Characters from all the choices ready to beat me up – and they did.

This game showed you how annoying the Character rule can be when you can only shoot Characters.  I killed all the Conscripts and just left the table covered in heroes.  Of course the closet hero a lot of the time was a Culexius assassin which meant my shooting was pretty muted.  I could try to shoot one thing – but it was so hard to remove it and find the ways to get in and only have that option to shoot against.  The saint made a lot of 4+ saves from Overwatched lascannons and missile launchers.  I did kill her once but its was way to late to ensure I didn’t lose a Raven a turn.  Her ability to double move herself was rough.  Mr. Roboute killed all the Eversor Assassins and died twice for his troubles.  If he had gotten up with more then 1 wound (had to use the reroll to let him get up) it might have been different.  Oh well.  I didn’t get tabled this game and killed stuff so at least from my stand point of games it was fun.  If you haven’t figured out I lost this one again.

Woot – day 1 and I am 1-2. This isn’t looking to good but we figured out might as well throw me to the wolves, pull a bad match up, and hopefully get our guys 3 amazing match ups.  This is what seemed happen in the other rounds beyond the last one – where we played a rough team.  But hey lets move on down this story into Spam.

Round 4 – Again can’t remember the name but it had 120 brims, the Changling, Bel’akor, Nurgle Prince, Tz Prince, Tz Herald, and 12 Exalted Flamers.  Yup a brick of FU as it slowly moved/advanced up the field as I shot away at it.

I tried to shoot it all down – but he has played this match up a ton of times with his team mate and knew the outcome of the game.  I killed a lot of Brims, One Exalted flamer, and then died as his octopus of Smite got in range and shot everything out of the sky with Mortal Wounds and Exalted Flamer Lascannons.  This is the type of army I should have played but didn’t really work out the points for my team to look at.  I don’t think I would have had the Exalted Flamers as they always sucked for me.  I would constantly roll 1 shot and miss so I found them pointless.  Still this army needs to get hit by an assault option like our Ork player but I think they knew what to hunt for.  Lucky for me the other flyer armies they had got to dodge this and took it on the chin.  I got Tabled again this game with Roboute again not standing up as we “played” out the final rounds as he got into Smite Range.


Round 5 – Josh Death with his Fortress of Redemption, 6 or 8 Tech Marines with Conversion Beamers, Long Fang Squad with Missiles & Terminator Wolf Guard guy, 2 Vindicare, 2 Eversor, 2 Culexius, and 2 Callidus.  They all could get deployed in the Fortress and thus he has a 1 drop list.  So… he went first.

I’ve played Josh before so we know each other and the game was amicable.  I don’t have bad games really as I know it is a game.  We came into this one knowing I was taking this list away from our team and other bad match ups so my only plan was to kill the Fortress with bolters.  Which I did do and felt very satisfied.  I didn’t get tabled even and pulled First blood with Roboute all up in his zone punching things.  I think if i could have gotten lucky with some shooting I might have gotten his Warlord – but most likely at the sacrifice of mine and line breaker.  Oh well.  Fun game with lots of conversion beamer hits, man-beard dice rolls, and amazement at the power of a reroll to hit and wound bolder.

Oh and if you haven’t noticed – I am not talking about the missions because in reality in this extreme environment with an extreme list it was either I murdered everything on the table – or all my stuff died.  Thus the mission was somewhat pointless.

Round 6 – Sean Nayden and his C&ck Fl&ck.  This is the bad list – tons of Razerwings Flocks, and a bunch of Eldar Characters Sean likes to play.  We know this match up is bad – but I took Sean out of the hunt to hurt a list that we need to win this round.  So there you go.

We started setting up and we knew the outcome with me pulling first blood and maybe warlord if I can get the Ycarnne.  While setting up we got the good deployment (hammer and anvil like) and I sat prepared to murder a ton of birds.  Well Sean proceeded to roll a Seize and the game was pointless as he was already halfway up the board before I could turn on my bolter death.  At least I got enough time to pack up my army, help get other armies packed up, and be ready to rush out to Atlanta as over half my team was flying out that night.


So I ended up the weekend with a 1-5 record.  Pretty bad but I did get first blood every round.  This really showed me I need a list I have a lot more faith and options in to feel a lot more comfortable. But that is life and I know next time to work on lists that fit my style and push that I need my list versus something else that I don’t like as much.  Oh and play the bad guys cuz I ain’t no goodie too shoe.  Big thanks to Shane who ran the event and a big thanks to everyone I saw there.  I get to see a ton of friends I don’t get enough time with due to life, family, cash, and time.

Also I don’t think 8th is bad at all right now – it is just very new and not fully set up yet.  I do suspect will see some balancing options coming as well as lot more army variety as all the rules come out.  We just need to give it some time and will be happy with the outcome.  This new GW is working to get up to speed and I have faith I will be throwing out dice and enjoying my games – especially at the BAO.

~ How do you think the game is shaping up in it’s early days?


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