Wednesday 19 October 2016

Club Search- Durham Raiders

My search for a new gaming club kicked off with a visit to Durham Raiders a couple of weeks ago. They run a regular games night on a Tuesday at 6 pm. Unfortunately, I don't finish till 5.30 pm, so by the time I finish work and make my way through the rush hour traffic to Durham, it would hardly be worth setting up for a game!
What is more fortunate for me, is that they also run a club night on a Sunday every two weeks. I quite like a weekend club. They normally start and finish earlier than a weeknight one, so I can be back home before 11 pm. The downside of a weekend club is that many of my weekends tend to get busy quickly, so I can't always make them.

I wandered down to Durham Raiders for a game against Paul and his Space Wolves. I was playing my White Scars once more as this was the only army that had made the move from St Andrews so far. As I have been playing them a lot recently, I decided to try a different type of army than I was used to. I decided to give the Gladius Strike Force a go as I had never fielded the Strike Force or indeed a Battle Demi-Company.

My army consisted of:
Gladius Strike Force
Battle Demi-Company
Khan- Moondrakkan
Command Squad- Bikes, Apothecary, 2 Storm Shields, 2 Grav Guns, Power Axe
5 Tactical Marines- Grav Gun, Meltabombs
10 Tactical Marines- Flamer, Meltabombs
Drop Pod
5 Tactical Marines- Plasma Cannon
5 Devastators- 4 Missile Launchers
5 Bikers- 2 Grav Guns, Meltabombs

10th Company Task Force
5 Scouts- Camo Cloaks. Sniper Rifles
3 Scout Bikers- Grenade Launcher, Cluster Mines, Homing Beacon
3 Scout Bikers- Grenade Launcher, Cluster Mines, Homing Beacon

Shadowstrike Kill Team
5 Scouts- Bolters, Meltabombs
Landspeeder Storm
5 Scouts- Bolt Pistols, Combat Weapons, Meltabombs
Landspeeder Storm
5 Vanguard Veterans- 2 Thunder Hammers and Storm Shields, 3 with Pairs of Lightning Claws

As you can see, a very different army to the one I usually field (so few bikes!). I originally planned to take Rhinos and a Razorback on my Tactical Squads and Devastators, however, when I arrived at the club, I realised I had forgotten the box with my Transports! I took the drop pod instead, an extra Landspeeder Storm and beefed up one of the Tactical Squads instead.
I also wanted to try Shadowstrike Kill Team once more, so had to take two units of three Scout Bikers to make up the requirements for the 10th Company Task Force.

It was a great game against Paul and his army, filled with multiple drop pods and Wulfen! I really wish I had taken notes for a full battle report as it was a really fun maelstrom game, but you will need to settle for a few photos from the game instead.

Having never used the Gladius Strike Force before, I was very impressed with it. The Doctrines are really great in the game, providing some very useful re-rolls throughout the game. It adds another layer of tactical play as you must decide when to use which Doctrine.

I didn't take full notes of the game, but there were a few things that stood out during the game:

  • The Thunderwolves were brought down in a hail of firepower. I have played these before and know how tough they can be in combat, so got rid of them early.
  • My Tactical Squad and a Scout Squad charged a Drop Pod that came down in my deployment zone. The Scout Sergeant blew it up with his Meltabombs, the resulting explosion taking out half of both squads!
  • The Vanguard Veterans did nothing at all. They were charged by the Wulfen. I managed to kill one of the squad (they were striking last as they charged through cover), but they Veterans were easily gutted by the Wulfen. 
  • Wulfen hit damn hard! The special rules allowing them to strike after they die means they can put out a lot of damage in a turn, even when you are killing them. 
  • Khan and the Command Squad took a combined charge from the Terminators, Dreadnought and Wulfen. The Command Squad were easily butchered, but Khan tanked about 8 Lightning Claw attacks from the Terminators with his Iron Halo to survive the combat.
  • A unit of Scout Bikers and the Long Fangs got locked in a combat for most of the game. Neither side could finish off the other and I kept failing my Hit and Run roll!

The guys at the club seemed really nice and I had a great game against Paul, a re-match is definitely on the cards. I will probably be going back on a regular basis. As the club is only every 2 weeks, this will give me the chance to try out some of the other clubs in the area giving me a larger range of opponents to play against.
Next time I go, I will be taking notes for a regular battle report, I thought I would give it a miss for the first week as I got to know people.


  1. Hey! Glad to hear you're starting to get settled in there! Who won though? :D

    My club also only has weekend gaming days/nights - and only 1 / month at that. I still much prefer them to week nights. Usually it's too much stress to play a nice game after work and still be finished on time as not to get to bed too late because of work the next day.

    1. The White Scars carried the day in the end Chris.

      This Sunday, I will probably try the local Newcastle club. I need to start getting a few practice games in for Fluffageddon.

  2. Looks like it was an awesome game. Glad to hear you're getting settled in there. I stay so busy on the weekends that it rarely affords me the opportunity to play. Usually only once a month or two when we hold a tourney at my local FLGS. I am not particularly fond of gaming on the weekenights because of work and trying to balance all of that but it seems lately that's the only free time I have ha.

  3. Certainly a great-looking battle! Here's hoping for plenty more.

    Vanguard Veterans are in an uncomfortable place. They can stomp all over non-Assault Units, as well as "basic" Assault Units like Berzerkers or such, but they really can't stand up to the true combat monsters like Wulfen or tooled up Biker Command Squads. Gotta pick their fights carefully. Also, I'm really surprised he didn't have an Autofrag Launcher in the Wulfen Unit. Very cheap, and it (effectively) gives the Squad Frag Grenades.