friday 40k humor

friday 40k humor

Thursday, May 1, 2014

How To Play The Flying Circus: Final

 original post: 40k Daemons

At last, we come to the end of our discussion of how to correctly play that most limp-wristed of candy-ass armies, the Flying Circus. Thus far we have talked about power selection, target selection, the early game and your overall strategy. Finally, we will discuss the late game from turn 3 on, because turn 3 is when you need to have a plan two turns in advance.

For this discussion, we assume you are playing objectives, which is the most common and fair game because kill points and the Relic are dumb. If you are playing KP, build a small, yet insurmountable lead, and then run away for the rest of the game. If you are playing the Relic, don’t let them get it, put invincible Fateweaver on top of it if you must, and get first blood and linebreaker. I said those missions are dumb, didn’t I?

Objective games are more complicated, but let’s assume Crusade with five objectives. You remember this diagram.

The start of turn 3 is where you figure out which objectives you will have FMC’s standing next to two turns from now. This decision is entirely dependent on how much scoring your opponent could conceivably get to each one. If they have Windrider Jetbikes, this is more challenging to plan for if you can’t kill them. If they are Tau, their troops are dead meat, so it’s pretty easy to plan.

Fateweaver is good for contesting one objective because he gets the Grimoire unless 1 in 10 happens at the wrong time. The first thing you figure out on turn 3 after all your powers are cast is where does Fateweaver need to finish two turns from now, and how is he going to get there. Maybe he flies off the board, maybe you need to kill something to clear a path, I can’t possibly describe every scenario. It is enough to say that you need to plan two turns ahead on turn 3.

What you do with your other MC’s depends on how the battle is going. 

Unless your opponent is exceptionally skilled, or you’ve made mistakes, by turn 4, your opponent should be weaker than he was at the start of the game while you still have all your FMC’s. This is a natural consequence of taking few risks and targeting threats to your FMC’s. Beginning turn 4, the priority shifts from protecting your FMC’s to killing scoring and threats to your troops. You spent the early game getting air superiority, now you exploit it.

Your troops will be in on turn 4 if they aren’t already. Is that Wyvern squadron/Thunderfire Cannon dead? No? Better go get it. Are all the legitimate threats to your scoring gone? Go after theirs. You care more about killing the threats to your scoring than killing theirs because you can contest their objectives for the most part.

Sometimes you might be faced with a large blob of Zombies or IG that have an objective fully-surrounded such that you cannot contest. This too can be dealt with. Invincible Fateweaver can charge such a unit and pull it off the objective 6” per turn thanks to pile in rules.

By turn 5, the other guy usually has far less force on the board than you do. Get in position to contest those objectives which are necessary to secure victory, but take only those risks that are necessary to make sure you win. With each passing turn, the other guy will continue to lose more than you will, and victory becomes easier and easier because whatever scoring they have left needs to be up close and personal with your FMC’s.

That’s the general theory of operation. Very few armies have what it takes to deal with a circus properly played, but there are some that do, and there are ways to counter how the list operates. In my LVO prep, I was able to defeat my own flying circus using my LVO army by just keeping everything together so the FMC’s could not land lest they get swarmed. The Fiends helped keep the FMC’s at bay as well.

The toughest matchup for the circus is Wave Serpent spam as every single skimmer can scoot 12” and still blast you just as well as it could have had it not moved. They can also get the hell out of dodge. I faced this at ATC on a board with one LOS blocker on one side and it was a nightmare. He bugged out and blasted me from safety, and when I failed all my saves on my Grimoire Prince in the first volley of turn 3, it was tough to come back, though I did come close to pulling it out. 

Fortunately, Wave Serpent spam isn’t as popular as it was a year ago, but I still bring hades Drakes for the damn things. If there is sufficient LOS-blocking terrain on the board, you can win this matchup by hiding until late in the game when the troops need to get out, but if it’s a tourney where the terrain is crappy like ATC, you’ll need some luck.

And that’s all I got. The rest comes with practice and experience. If nothing else, remember to play like a colossal wussy and more often than not, you’ll come out ahead, if with fewer friends than before.