London Grand Tournament (LGT) is back again! Now, if you read last year’s article you will remember the terrain issues we had at the event. In short, we were playing with less than half of what is recommended and left a lot of players who attended with a sour taste in their mouth about the event. If anyone remembers, LGT they had terrain issues with 40k in the past and Zac (the organiser of LGT) fixed the 40k terrain issues. Now, it is one of the biggest 40k events in the world.
Zac also wanted to fix the terrain issues with Legion at LGT and repair the damage to the LGT reputation that had been caused from last year. Zac reached out to me after knowing I had run two previous world open qualifiers this year and had seen my terrain in use at UK Games Expo and Milton Keynes Grand Tournament. We agreed to use my 20 tables of terrain and if we sold enough tickets that he would give me access to as much terrain I would need to make sure the tables would be of a standard that is expected of a WoQ.
The weekend’s event was going to be six swiss rounds to get a clear undefeated player. Due to Nav losing his pair down in round three this meant the sixth round was not needed to to have the clear undefeated player and only five rounds was needed.
We had zero drops between day one and two. I’ve found that with running all three UK WoQ and running the events as pure swiss there is a low drop rate between the days in comparison to running a top cut and side event. Having a top cut does allow players to lose one game and still have a potential to win the event. In both scenarios though you can lose one game and still have a chance of winning an invite.
Unfortunately before the event even began we had an issue with ticket sales. Gameuplink was showing the event as 64 players since this is what space had been allocated at the venue. The website then started showing the event as sold out but we had only sold 38 tickets. So, space was reallocated.
There is not an issue with this at all. We just needed more notice to give time to the community to help sell the event more. This was Unfortunately the smallest of all three WoQ in the UK but there was the demand for tickets. It is normal for players to buy tickets last minute even after booking accommodation and flights. In the future we hope to avoid this issue by giving more notice to the community to respond to the lower than expected ticket sales and to try and have all the WoQ being held in the UK with 60+ players.
As always a huge thank you to Derrkater for gathering all this data.
Let’s start with the simple stats of the number of activations. It’s mostly similar to the way activations have trended down globally since the rules changes a year ago to add the pass mechanic. Both seven activation lists where being piloted by the Grant family so must be something in the blood that they both like low activations!
The average bid was a lot lower than the previous qualifiers. With all three lists with the 22 point bid were exact copies of each other. SOMEONE has obviously been trying to push an agenda with a list…but most people seem to try and not take a bid or take as small as one as possible.
When you look at faction breakdown the red save armies are the most dominant with 11 lists each. The only surprise to me here was how underrepresented the Separatists faction was with how well they have been performing at other events not just in the UK but also across Europe and the US.
With 11 republic I would expect the number of Anakins and Padmes to be higher than they were. Otherwise all of the units you expect to be taken in per portion of the faction breakdown make sense.
The biggest surprise to me was the lack of heavies. Is this due to the high amount of impact most lists are bringing or just because the people who normally play double heavies where not in attendance?
8th – Ed Law
Ed went 3-1-1 with this 501st list. The thing that will surprise most was the draw was not from Sabotage the Moisture Vaporators, it was from bombing run. Ed got paired against Nav who was running a near identical apart from a few upgrades and a few different battle deck cards. They both managed to score all 3 bombs and managed to kill a total of 6 models between them both. In these kind of match ups if you are both undefeated one of you must commit to change the status quo to at least have a chance of winning the event otherwise having a draw is the same as a loss when it comes to standings.
The lists is a very defensive list, being able to spend Anakin’s dodges whenever they can along with force barrier to help protect the full arc squads so when they do hit they hit really hard with the intention of wiping a unit to help level the activation disadvantage. Ed’s only loss was to Mikolaj who was running Kallus double Bounty.
7th – Tom Smith
Tom has been practicing this list quite a bit recently. Even with his fellow podcaster trying to convince him to bring blizzard force he wanted to play and have fun. He managed to do his best he has ever done at a two-day event with this and I think it is all down to him having practice with the list. Knowing when to play Tactical Strike is what lets this lists alpha strike along with the bikes win games. His only loss was to a rebel double bounty list in the second round. I like the bikes in this list rather than a gunline since it gives you more flexible objectives.
6th – Sammy P
Sam has brought an Panime (Padme + Anakin) list with the fire power and defensive abilities coming from the Pykes. We all know they have a good offensive firepower and with dodges can also tank a few shots. The Exemplar ability on Padme and Anakin allows the Pykes access to even more dodges. Plus, there’s Boil being able to guardian another hit. You can start to see that it is hard for this list to lose units. It also has another two clone units to fire support the already strong Pyke dice pool. Along with the gunline it also has Anakin as the force user to help win the gun fight with force barrier or to dive into the enemy as a melee threat.
Sam’s only loss was during round one to the best polish player in attendance, but this allowed Sam to submarine his way into the top 8!
5th – Mike Rees
Mike has brought a 501st list with 0 Impact! Now, luckily for him he faced no armour lists since there were only two in attendance. This list is built around sharing defensive tokens. The Dodges, Surges and Barrier from Anakin all lead to this being harder to kill then you would expect. It is one bad dice roll away losing a very expensive unit.
The offensive power along with survivability of this list is not much different from the other Republic lists we have seen. The biggest improvement is the mobility from the ARC troopers since they like moving and shooting.
Mike’s only loss was round 1 and was against Ed’s 501st.
4th – Finn P
Finn had already come across to the UK earlier in the year and shown his dominance with Blizzard Force with Op Vader since it was before the changes. Finn had decided he wanted to bring a fun list and still beat all the UK players. In theory if he had won the event then Finn would have burnt the flights and accommodation since he already had his and this is the only thing that does not pass down. Luckily for us Finn lost his last game on day one and we could all relax that the ticket was going to someone new.
The list itself is quite complex with how Anakin and Yoda can interact with guidance and once Anakin has relentless which can either come from his or Yoda’s card. While you struggle to deal with the two Jedi there is also 2 units of clones with heavy weapons trying to soften up units before the two Jedi arrive.
With Finn making the top four and already having an invite this did mean that it got pass down to Mike Rees.
3rd – Richard Rasmussen
Richard is a very good player and boy does it show with him coming in third with this list. The list itself apart from Ashoka does not seem to have anything to me that is mega scary. The FD’s are a nice meta call vs the amount of armour that is normally around. The DLT rebel troopers is also a good back up gunline to help support the FD’s. All the while, Cassian does some plink damage with Ashoka to clean up.
The biggest thing I heard from all of his opponents was the impact the small Ewoks had on each game. With no upgrades, and only costing 75 points for two units (5 points needed for underworld connections) they seem to have had an impact on all the games where I spoke to Richard’s opponents.
Richard has now earned his ticket to worlds and I’m sure he will be aiming to make day two this time round!
2nd – Dennis Jenkel
In the top 8 we have 5 clone players and it’s the top two performing are the two that are the most different but they both contain Yoda. The amount of tricks the little green frog brings to the table and flexibility is probably one of the highest in the game. Having Boil in a unit of Phase 2’s is an interesting choice since he costs the same but always has access to a surge token.
Dennis is another great player from Germany and with his ticket now secured I’m sure he will be looking to go even further than last year where he finished 32nd!
1st – Chris Rees
Chris’ list is about as unoriginal as his surname (he is not related to Mike)…there is a reason we have seen it mentioned in the last two UK top 8 articles. This list thankfully does not contain any insults towards me and dog eating.
There were three players who all brought this exact list. But there was only one player who could pilot it well enough to make the Top 8. Chris was also the only person who came to the event with a sensible amount of reps with the list. The list is very strong with Blizzard now winning its third World Open Qualifier in the UK and one in the US!
If you didn’t know the list is mainly built to make the most of its objective deck. Most lists don’t like this battle deck and you may only really have a chance to win against blizzard with one or two objectives. If Blizzard gets one of your unfavourable objectives then you are not going to have a good time.
Congratulations to Chris with winning his ticket to worlds finally with this being his first.
Chris was on stream twice over the weekend so if you want to see how to pilot this list correctly then you can watch it here.
Another successful World Open Qualifier event with everyone having great games all weekend! We had players from Germany, Netherlands, Norway and Poland all travel to play. The best part as always is how after the first day of gaming we all went out for drinks to our day of gaming.
Is Blizzard force still an issue even with the list building changes and changes to things like force choke? It does not look like this list is going away, so make sure you have experience against the list or have an answer on how to beat it.
With this being the final WoQ in the UK out of the 12 tickets available Germany took home four. Poland took three and England got a total of five. You can see why all three countries did so well at worlds and all of them are looking to do so again!