Monday, November 7, 2011

The Rock-Con 2011 Gentleman's Grand Tournament Experience!

Good news, everyone! I survived my first Warhammer 40,000 tournament! 

In case you're still wondering, I was one of the thirty players at the Warhammer 40,000 Gentleman's Tournament at Rock-Con 2011 in Rockford, IL.
Oh, and what a great convention it was, my friends!
So sit tight and let me tell you about the venue and the tournament as a whole before I start posting battle reports from the five games I played during this weekend-long tournament.

The Venue:
Outside view of the ISC!
The Rock-Con convention took place at the Wedgbury Indoor Sports Center in Rockford, IL, which is where it gets its name from. The venue is simply massive - it is a large two-story building where you can literally play multiple sports. It is an indoor sports center, after all.

The convention probably took half of the space, while the other half was used for.. I dunno... what do little kids play these days? Soccer?
There were two concession stands, one of which was especially convenient and the prices were not too crazy (although $2.00 for a drink is a bit too much.. especially from a vending machine!). I enjoyed a few bacon cheeseburger combos myself throughout the weekend. I didn't really notice any water fountains, which would be my only real complaint, but then again I didn't look hard enough for one. Wargaming makes me thirsty..
There were many different vendors all over the place, but I didn't have the money and time to spend. Iknow that there were some awesome steampunk watches, bracelets and other trinkets. Oh, and there were raffles! ;D But I didn't win anything... D;

The Tournament:
The Gentleman's Grand Tournament was just that: a pleasant, epic tournament.
30 players, 5 games throughout 2 days... What else does one need from a tournament? A shiny trophy, perhaps? There were a few of those. I really didn't know what to expect from my first independent tournament. I don't really play too many people from different stores and was not prepared for the competition, especially when it comes to facing experienced players who a part of wargaming clubs.
Honestly, all I was hoping for is that I wouldn't have to face too many I.G and Grey Knights armies.. 
Oh, and that the terrain would be sweet.

Some of the terrain from the Gentleman's GT
 The terrain was satisfactory. Actually, I liked it quite a lot. Some tables definitely had a theme to them, although I doubt that it was intended, lol. For the most part I don't think that any tables were lacking in terrain and all of the tables I played on had at least on LoS-blocking piece of terrain, which is something that I'm not used to playing with. Games Workshop does not make tons of LoS-blocking terrain... All tables were in two pieces, which is a great idea, since they came from a different state and I bet that facilitated their transportation tremendously.

All terrain was "donated" by The Last Square all the way from Madison, Wisconsin!
Now that I think about it, a lot of the players were from that area as well, which at first seemed odd to me, but then I realized that Wargaming Clubs probably do that traveling thing a lot, huh? From what I managed to gather from the Internet it seems like the main gaming club represented at the Gentleman's GT was the D-Company. Props to you, guys - you sure know how to play a mean game of 40,000 and gave young Skarvald the Troll-faced a good challenge.
Now I kind of want to be part of a Wargaming Club..
I guess I'll have to make one myself.

Mantis Warriors!
Oh, I also met good ole Gitsplitta from the DakkaDakka forums. I managed to find him after taking some pictures of his army at this year's Adepticon (here's a link). Gitsplitta has a lovely Mantis Warriors army from the Badab War-era and his attention to detail, bright and incredibly smooth greens and yellows are just phenomenal. Not only are the Mantis Warriors a sweet Chapter, but they don't really see a lot of representation on the tabletop. I dare you to look up their gene-seed's genetic flaw!

Gitsplitta's Mantis Warriors
So yeah.. I totally Google'd to see if any bloggers or people I might have heard of are going to be attending Rock-Con and stumbled upon some forum in which Gitsplitta was all excited about attending. Stalking him was the easy part. I mean, it's not like the bright yellow and green models are hard to notice from a distance. Makes you wonder why the masters of guerrilla warfare and hit-and-run tactics would wear such bright colors..   
Anyway. I promised Mr. Wagner to take a few pictures of his army.. so here it goes:
 We couldn't play a game against each other.. but some day we will. Oh yes, we will. And no amount of praying will save the Mantises from the Wolves of Russ!

Oh, man you're probably anxious to find out how I did at the Gentleman's Grand Tournament, huh?
I played against Space Marines, I.G, two Dark Eldar armies and Space Wolves.
I went.. 4-1.
And I finished 5th out of 30 people!

Expect battle reports with some pictures and more commentaries in the next few days. For now I'll leave you with a quick shot of the army I brought with me. Until then..

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