Friday, September 26, 2008


That was it - campaign over. My final record was nine games played, with seven wins and only two losses. A pretty good record, especially as my overall record outside of the Vogen campaign with Daemonhunters was a losing one.

This was due to a number of factors. First among these was familiarity. I had been playing the Daemonhunters for almost a year, in well over forty games, before the campaign. I knew the capabilities of my units and the army list very well, and used all of my knowledge to build an effective 1000 point army.

This brings me to my second reason; a solid army list. My list was almost solely built to win games. I dropped some units which I usually picked for aesthetic reasons, and chose more effective units instead. To this end I actually converted extra combat servitors, added hunter killer missiles to the rhinos and painted more Stormtroopers specifically for the Vogen campaign.

I felt a bit guilty about including an Eversor assassin, wondering if I was getting into powergamer territory, but then I heard about someone including the Nightbringer in his list, and another person picking the Red Terror and a winged Hive Tyrant. I needed all the help I could get!

As well as having a good list, and having had lots of practice, I had a plan! More than any time in the past I was focused going into the campaign, knowing why each unit was in my force and the tactics I would use. Several times I delayed assaults I knew I would win, so that I would be in a better position later in the game. I used screening extensively to control the game, sacrificing small inexpensive units in order to destroy more pricey and powerful enemy squads.

And I played to win.

I am a fairly easy going gamer, and sometimes get distracted by the spectacle of a game, trying something risky but fun, or staying 'in character' even if it means losing when I should win. If I am beating a player I sometimes make sloppy moves or forget to shoot with a unit, consciously or sub-consciously letting them back into the game. After taking many spankings with my Daemonhunters before the campaign, I resolved to try harder with them. They deserved it! I wasn't a jerk, bending rules and arguing small points, I just concentrated for the whole game and continued playing hard even if it looked like I had the game won.

Despite my excellent win/loss record I was still nowhere near winning the campaign. I think I finished fourth or fifth, but I was a good 30 points behind the winner (an Ulthwe army). The main reason for this was the campaign mechanics.

Points were awarded for losses as well as wins (obviously you got more points for a win) and there was no limit on the number of games you could play over the six weeks. Some players played 20 games and no matter the result of their games, they kept accruing points. It quickly became clear, especially after a two week break from the campaign, that I had no chance to win because I couldn't play enough games. Many other players discovered the same thing and the campaign just petered out for them as they lost interest. Only the top three players pushed to play more games in the final weeks which was a shame for Paul, the campaign coordinator, as he had put a lot of effort into the campaign.

As the Vogen campaign progressed, it became clear that Paul had bitten off more than he could chew. The rules were relatively complex and there was only one copy of them in the store. In retrospect it would have been better if there were copies for all players to read, well before the campaign started. Once the campaign began, Paul tried to give us regular updates, including our placings, but he was deluged by the sheer number of players and games being played. After a few weeks the updates stopped completely and no-one really knew where they stood. This led to a number of players dropping out, I think, because they simply didn't know what was going on.

That's not to say I didn't appreciate his efforts and I applaud him for having the balls to actually run the thing. I'll bear in mind the problems we encountered if I ever get round to organising a campaign of my own.

Overall, though, the campaign was a positive experience and a fitting send off for my Daemonhunters.

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