Ribble Round-Up

Second only to the Invitational, the Ribble Rumble is my favourite tournament. It has one of the best social scenes that you’ll ever find, the friendliest atmosphere possible and it’s only 30 minutes away from where I live.

If you’re thinking it sounds like a jolly boys outing then it is, but don’t be fooled, it is also one the most competitive tournaments in the UK with some seriously hardcore lists.


I thought I’d share my experience of the weekend with those unfortunate few who couldn’t make it this year…..not to rub it in but you missed a belter event 😉

Game 1 – Geoff Hamilton (Death Guard)

My day started off knowing that I was playing Geoff Hamilton, one of the organisers of the Rumble and one of the nicest blokes you could ever meet. To make things even better, Geoff is a fellow fluffhead, always uses lovely armies and plays Nurgle Chaos Marines. Chaos on Chaos always results in good games with lots of destruction and this game was no exception. His list was roughly:

Typhus, Sorceror on a Palaquin, 5 Bikers, 28 Zombies x2, 7 Plague Marines, 7 Havocs with 4 Autocannons, 2 Heldrakes & 2 Obliterators.

The game was kill points/Dawn of War and after setting up my Aegis Geoff gave me first turn. This threw me a little, I’m guessing he wanted my Heldrake on so he could vector strike it with both of his Heldrakes.

First turn saw my Vindicator kill an Oblit and a Predator finish off the remaining Oblit for first blood. The Noise Marines whittled down the Plague Marines and a unit of Cultists over the game thanks to the Bikers holding them up for a couple of turns. Nestor and his CSM retinue lured Typhus and his zombies back to their own lines (although Typhus did ascend to Daemonhood killing him!). My Heldrake did a number on his Bikers, took out one of Geoff’s Heldrakes and helped the Noise Marines wipe out a squad of cultists. The Predators took out the other Heldrake and killed off his sorceror.

The final result was an 8-6 win for me. I was really happy with that as I had a lot more units than Geoff and Nurgle units are a right bugger to get rid of.  Geoff got slay the warlord so the the points were 22-6 to me.

Game 2 – Graham White (Eldar)

I’ve played Graham a few times before and he’s another really nice bloke. He plays for the Scotland ETC team but still likes to use balanced lists and his armies always look pretty. Today was no exception:

Eldrad, 20 (ish) Guardians with 2 Scatter Lasers, 10 Guardians with shuriken cannon in a Wave Serpent, 5 Fire Dragons in a Wave Serpent, 3 Warwalkers with Scatter Lasers, Wraithknight, 2 units of 3 jetbikes & an Aegis with Quad Gun.

The mission was Crusade/Hammer and Anvil. I loaded the objectives as close to each other as possible and was fortunate enough to get three of them behind my Aegis Line. First turn was night fight so very little happened on turn 1 but turn two saw Graham’s Warwalkers kill 6 Noise Marines in one round of shooting! The lads obviously took exception to this and killed all three with their blastmasters in reply to give me first blood. The Predators did sterling work destroying his Aegis and stripping wounds from the Wraithknight before taking it out in the end game. The Heldrake fried his troops wiping out both jetbike units and whittling down his guardians. Nestor and his CSM’s took out the fire dragon Wave Serpent and dragged Eldrad and his few remaining guardians away from the objectives to secure my position. The Noise Marines shot down the other Serpent to earn me a 22-4 win.

Game 3 Matt Robertson (Daemons)

Another top bloke. I don’t think I’ve ever played Matt before but I’ve known him for a while. His 40k philosophy is very much in contrast to to mine but he’s still a perfect gentleman to play against and after managing a couple of wins I was expecting to meet some very tough armies. I had a major problem with the army he was using which consisted of the following:

Fate Weaver, 3 Daemon Princes, 3 units of horrors.

My problem wasn’t his list, as I said, I chose to use a fluffy list and I have no problem with anybody using a competitive list, it was with his models. Fate Weaver had no heads or arms, the Horrors were polystyrene balls painted pink and the 3 Daemon Princes were all exactly the same model, painted flat purple, although to be fair one of them only had one wing so I could tell that model apart.

The game consisted of him casting lots of powers on his princes/Fate Weaver and then smashing my army apart. I’ve often thought that I would like to try a Daemon Prince army but after experiencing the amount of paperwork involved in keeping track of who has what, I’ve decided it’s the most boring army in the known universe. I apologise to Matt for not wanting to play this game, he really is a nice bloke but his army was a disgrace.

Loss 2-30

Game 4 – Gareth Donnelly (Iyanden)

Another pleasant chap who was using a very vibrant Iyanden army made more vibrant by my delicate state from too much drink and not enough sleep ;-).

I was hoping my loss to Matt would drop me down the tables enough to avoid the more competitive armies but alas it didn’t. Gareth’s army design philosophy contrasts with mine and unfortunately this doesn’t lead to interesting games. This isn’t me having a go, it’s just a fact. His list consisted of:

2 Farseers on jetbikes, 2 planes, 3 wraithknights, 6 x 3 jetbikes.

The game consisted of him moving his Wraithknights forward and me trying to shoot them dead, failing miserably (not helped by being so hungover that I forgot to deploy my Vindicator…..D’oh) and getting tabled by them. I managed to kill one with Daemonettes and a jetbike squad and that was it. Apologies to Gareth for not giving you a better game, I’ve realised I’m getting too old to stay up until 3.30 am and expect to function properly the next day ;-).

Loss 2-30

Game 5 – Aythlan Crookes (Guard)

Another really nice bloke who was using a balanced Guard list:

Company Command Squad, 2 Vendettas with 5 vets in each, 3 Leman Russes, 3 x 10 man guard squad in a Chimera, 3 Heavy Weapon Squads.

The mission was the Scouring/Vanguard Strike and it worked against Aythlan. When the counters were turned over the high scorers were on my side. The Bikers were the stars in this game, weathering a lot of fire power and taking out the command squad, Chimera, 10 guardsmen, a Leman Russ and another Chimara. Aythlan’s dice were shockingly bad but he smiled all the way through the game even when my Quad gun intercepted his vendetta with 3 penetrating hits, which saw it explode and nose dive into a Chimera, not only killing the vets on board but killing 7 guardsmen in the Chimera as well. Nestor and his CSM’s destroyed a Russ and the heavy weapon squads and the Vindicator destroyed the other Leman Russ for first blood. The Predators took out the remaining Chimera and the other Vendetta and the Noise Marines cleaned up the stragglers that bailed out to give me a 30-4 win.

So 3 wins and 2 losses. I’m pretty happy with the way the army performed overall.

The Noise Marines are still my favourite unit and they performed admirably in most of my games. The additional Predator really seems to help out with flyer duty, but I may have just got lucky in a couple of games. The Daemonettes make a great counter assault unit, especially behind the Aegis line. The Vindicator is a massive fire magnet but every time I got first blood, it was because of it. The Bikers are still very hit and miss, but they do make a great distraction unit, as do the outflanking Chaos Space Marines.

Nestor still concerns me but that’s because like all Chaos Space Marine Lords he needs to choose his targets carefully. I don’t seem to have much luck with his Burning Brand and keep wanting to give him back his Murder Sword.

It’s a very fun army to use and I feel I’m slowly improving with the army with every additional game.

The tournament itself was as good as ever and I’d like to take the opportunity to thank Geoff, Chris, Paul, Rob and Iain for putting on a fantastic event and all of my opponents for being true gentlemen.

I’m not sure about the scoring system, 10pts for secondary seemed a little high IMO, I think 5pts would be better. The painting criteria needs tightening up, as this is a very important aspect to the hobby for me and Rob mentioned they’d be looking at this in the future.

The tables were fantastic and I can’t think of any event that comes close to them. The organisation was as good as ever and I can’t express just what a great atmosphere this event has.

For those who have never been to the Ribble Rumble, I cannot stress how highly I rate this event. Good games, good tables, good company, good atmosphere & a great tournament…..If you can only do one tournament a year, make it this one!

Stay Frosty.


15 thoughts on “Ribble Round-Up

  1. Thanks for the write up Gary, sounds like you had a good time (well most of the weekend).
    Having attended a number of the old “Toy Soldier” events (that have now metamorphosed into The Rumble), I was very tempted to attend because as you’ve already mentioned this is one of the best events on the calendar due in no small part to the social aspect of the weekend.
    However when players can turn up with an army as you’ve described in your game 3 and are permitted to play then its not for me. I’ve faced a few similar style Armies over the last 2-3 years at events, where players apologise for their spam, and the poor quality of their modelling/painting as you take your models off the table, barely throwing a dice and pondering what a waste of time it was even setting them up.
    But it’s not just their opponents these players are short changing its the event organisers aswell. From regularly checking the Rumble threads over on TWF it’s abundantly clear that Geoff, Iain and the guys have put a lot of time, trouble and love into organising, and facilitating a gaming event in a brilliant venue with great tables and excellent scenery. For a player to turn up with an army as you’ve described really isn’t on, and lets down everyone, themselves included.
    Whilst some players may argue that their not good painters or modellers, I don’t think there would be many people who expect to be playing against Golden Daemon armies every game, there is a minimum expectation and clearly some players don’t realise what is & isn’t acceptable.
    Hopefully “The Rumble posse” may address this area of contention before next years event, along with some form of event specific rules to encourage balanced armies.


    • Rob Simms assured me that painting requirements will be put back in to the events pack in future.
      As for Spam lists, well I’ve never been to an event yet that didn’t have spam. They don’t appeal to me but I dare say playing against fluffy armies doesn’t always appeal to spammers. It’s just a mis-match that neither player gets much satisfaction from. Without using comp it is always going to happen, it’s the nature of 40k tournaments.
      Don’t let it put you off Rob, it really is one the best events out there and even when you get a mis-match, the players are very friendly and it gives you time to mooch around and look at the pretty armies 😉

      • Well here’s an idea for Geoff & Iain to take back to the Ribble Posse (as I know they frequent this blog site), and taking on board your point Gary, re Waacers & Fluffies & never the twain shall meet.

        Considering that when I first started attending Toy Soldier way back in 2006 there were only 18 players in 40K, with 24 the following year, but they were still both great events, how about next years event holding two, yes that’s right two 40K events. 1 that’s a general Waac away as your hearts content, and another where the 40K Fluff universe is a reality & the old Gay Knights aren’t having the Tinmen over as bum buddies(No offence meant here and the reference is regarding allies if you hadn’t got it first time).

        No, I am being serious here! I remember GW running something similar way back at the turn of the century (How cool is that I’ve never used that turn before! Well actually maybe it’s not that cool now I think of it as it makes me feel quite old:-( ), Well in the year 2K, they ran two similtaneous events similar to my proposal above.

        So as long as there’s enough players willing to sign up for each of the events why not try it? This way those who like to play balance like minded souls with whatever rules set the organisers come up with to ensure adherance to the fluff can, and those of a more competitive ilk can Spam the crap out of each other without having to worry about lookin into the sad face of some poor old Fluffy caught in the Marker lights of their Battle Suits:-)

        Then between games and afterwards everyone can join in the social aspect of a great event and see if they can keep up with Gary and Neil in the drinking stakes:-)

      • That is a very interesting idea Rob. With the demise of the Rankings (all praise Slaanesh), people might be open to such an idea.
        I went to the GW event that you’re on about and was doing really well, sadly I had a car crash on the Sunday morning and never made it to the next day.
        I think you’re remembering the early years of toy soldier with rose tinted glasses though, I remember Iron Warriors smashing all before them and everybody being mightily fed up with 4 heavies 😉

        P.S. as for staying out drinking, I’ll have you know that Allen stayed out with us on Saturday. His corruption has well and truly begun and it is only a matter of time before his soul belongs to the Cold Steel Mercs 😉

  2. I must agree with everything that Gary has said.

    This is a great event that is both social and competitive. I must say that I think I was lucky in that most of my games were against armies that were reasonably balanced.

    Game 1 v Martin Moffat (Eldat/Tau) was a good game but it was the first time I had faced Wave Serpents and I quickly realised why there were some players with six of them! – I lost!

    Game 2 v Traditional Necron Spam – Flyers, Wraiths, Barges and Destroyer Lords. I managed a draw but I hate this army. It takes no thinking and littkle skill to play against.Esentially the wariths and barges fight the battle. Flyers leave the table on turn four and then on turn five the minimum troops drop out of the Flyers on the last turn to grab objectives. – I drew here whjich pleased me greatly.

    Game 3 v Will (Grey Knights) Will is a new player with the Ribble club and his army is beautifully painted. I enjoyed the game but his lack of expereince showed and I was able to beat him. Im sure the tables will be turned next year.

    Game 4 v Chris Varney (Dark Angels) This was a lovely painted army and an unusual one to boot. Kinights on bikes are awesome and the field generator is a nasty piece of kit! I still managed to win the game (See the photo at the top of this post – that’s my glorious Necrons over running two flaming Land Raiders) I was a little lucky when Chris failed 4 out of five 4+ saves on his Landraider due to his Field generator – but it made up for game one when 720 points of my army suffered a deep strike mishap and vanished.

    Game 5 v matt Robertson (Daemons) Same army that Gary mentions above. Nice guy but gary is right. the lack of effort into the army disrespects the opponents. – I lost.

    Overall I really enjoyed this event. I will definitely put it in my diary for next year.

  3. Are you sure you want me as a Merc? Another 5 game losing streak sees me with one win from 17 tournament games, not a record I’m proud of I assure you though I’m keeping the faith with my beloved Red Scorpions. The 6th ed. marine ‘dex is only a few weeks away and I’m fervently praying to the Emperor for some shiny new toys and some updated and improved rules that will hopefully see them go up a notch or two on the competitive scale. However, it’s still the old codex for the next couple of events at least (Pompey and the Warlords GT – I don’t think the new book will be out in time for it’s use to be allowed by the Warlords).
    Thanks for your kind comments regarding the quality of the event. It really does make the effort worthwhile when people enjoy the weekend so much. I mentioned on TWF that next year is the 20th anniversary of the founding of the Ribble Warriors. We hope to do one or two things to represent this at the Rumble but as yet are unsure what they may be. We do have one idea that Gary will appreciate but that’s hush hush for now.

    See ya all at the Pillage,


  4. Great write up mate 🙂

    Wish I had gone now but it has me looking forward to the Pompey Pillage again and quashing the ‘should I bother going?’ murmerings in my head!

  5. Mike, I know you’re getting a bit senile but you played Space Wolves in round 3!

    Gary, nice write up mate. I have to agree about the crappy Deamon army of Matts it kinda just says FU to the painting standards, I do appreciate not everyone is a painter but a little effort goes a long way in my opinion.

    I’m interested to see what the massive influx of wave serpant armies does for the meta, we could see the return of the mighty Land Raider maybe.

    • Brad. Thanks I got muddled up! Monoliths will also be good the wave serpents but Eldar players could always fill their serpents with fire warriors.

  6. Hello
    Thought I would pop over and see whats going on. Thanks for the kind words on the event, its has taken some time, money and work to get The Rumble up and running and we thrive of good feedback from sites like this. We also take any negative seriously and are always looking to improve.

    I can confirm I have spoken to Mr Marsh at the event and we will be applying a more stringent painting standard to next years Rumble. We had painting requirements this year but the said models met the bare minimum so we where bound by the rules pack to score as we did. I hope everyone understands that maintaining the integrity of the rules pack is important.

    Next year will be our 20th BDay as a club and we will be looking to expand the Rumble once again. Rest assured changes will be made to increase the painting and modelling standard.

    I have also copied over the idea of a split event to the Committee form so we can consider for next year. Another option would be to have a dirty dozen type sytems for the first two rounds.

    See you all soon

    • Rob

      Thanks for visiting our little blog. Rumble is always one of the highlights of the year so I’m sure most of us will attend next year when it is the 20 anniversary.

      See you later


  7. Castigator wrote:-

    (P.S. as for staying out drinking, I’ll have you know that Allen stayed out with us on Saturday. His corruption has well and truly begun and it is only a matter of time before his soul belongs to the Cold Steel Mercs.)

    I would like to take this opportunity to apologise to Allen for my offensive dancing on sat night, and also to Neil… who missed said dancing.
    Sufficed to say I have had a snikers and now feel much better

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