We have the results from another great Iron Halo GT at On the Rock in Bartlesville, Oklahoma! Iron Halo used the ITC Championship missions and you can check out their mission primer here. Also, don’t forget to check out their Facebook page for more pictures and info. This event will be one of the last events where we’ll get data before the new FAQ comes into effect so keep that in mind while reading through the results. Now are you ready to see the Best Armies of Iron Halo 2018?
|Chaos Space Marines||127.75||4|
Sisters, Deathwatch, and Knight Renegades
Well would you look at that, Sisters shake up the statistics again. Across the top we have armies who had only 1 or 2 players who did quite well shifting the average. We’ve seen this before even with the best armies of the NOVA Open where Sisters also were at the top. I think this really speaks to the fact that players who play armies they love time and time again can really do well this edition. Deathwatch and Knight Renegades have suffered before but with a good player really can put up good scores.
Now we’re starting to get at the real core of the meta before the new FAQ. There were more Guard and Knight players than any other faction. While there were obviously a few straight faction lists, many were THE list we’ve talked about before. Knight Castellan, some Custodes or Blood Angel assault element, and 32 good guardsmen to regenerate command points pair up really well. I can’t wait to see how the new command point rules affect results like these in the future. Castellans are definitely powerful even without all of their stratagems but I think we’ll see more Custodes Shield Captains on bikes and less of Slamguinius as he needs too many command points to be effective.
Chaos and Eldar
Close behind Imperial Knights come Chaos and two flavors of Space Elves. Chaos has a lot of tricks they can pull, especially when using the different abilities of each of their armies. Bash Brothers are also a thing. Two daemon Primarchs are no joke in the fluff or on the table. On the Eldar side, Harlequinn haywire bikes are very efficient in a Knight meta. Action economy and high levels of mobility also don’t hurt in ITC missions.
Tau and Dark Eldar
The Tau have been very up and down this edition. Their codex didn’t help very much but their result here shows they still have a lot of potential when used well. High damage weapons designed to deal with Knights doesn’t work well against 50 Firewarriors who can out shoot you if they don’t die. Don’t even try to charge that gunline with 5 wounds and only a 3++ save unless you can turn off overwatch. I’ll be keeping an eye on Tau especially after Orks come out. As the for the Dark Eldar, they broke through the average and still have a lot of viable builds. Chronos and Ravagers are still very point efficient. However the new deepstrike rules forcing Ravagers onto the table or risking a turn 2 deep strike might hurt. We’re no longer in the glory days of seeing the Dark Kin at the top of every tournament.
Thousand Sons, Necrons, Aeldar
All of these armies fell right below the average. Thousand Sons feel like they’ve had an arc very similar to Dark Eldar. Once they were in the top 3 of every event. Now they are literally just average. People have adapted to turn 1 Gor charges. I haven’t seen many highly competitive Necron builds this edition other than Destroyers and Ctan. We’ll see if someone can break the mold and push the Necrons a little further. Finally here we have the Craftworld Eldar. Dark Reapers and, our favorite, Shining Spears are still a threat but they too are no longer on top. Harlequinn bikes are just better suited to the current meta. We’ll see how long that lasts before Eldar players are scrambling to glue lances onto their bikes again.
Astartes and Other Factions that Struggled
And now we come to that part of the list again, where the Space Marines live. This time we have some Daemons mixed in. We’ve said it before but Space Marines really struggle in point efficiency especially when compared to other tools available to Imperium players. Many of the same Astartes problems affect the Death Guard and other Chaos Marines as well. I can’t wait until Chapter Tactics actually affect the whole army. Until then we can all just enjoy that GW’s golden boys aren’t the only ones getting all the toys this edition. Speaking of golden boys, Custodes have many of the same problems just pushed to the extreme. Tyranids, Genestealer Cults, and Orks are also in this category. To comment on the hive fleets first, GSC needs a codex. How GW handles turn one deep strikes and the Cult’s ability to leave and come back will be essential. Three more psychic powers could also be meta changing. A Magus can already steal a vehicle (see Castellan) if they can get things to line up well. I think we’ll see a resurgence of both factions after the codex. I think almost everything just said can be applied to the Orks as well. Some new models, stratagems, and psychic powers could really amp them up. I don’t want to deal with 150 nearly fearless Orks with support already. I can’t imagine dealing with that given even more synergies.
Iron Halo is our last data point before the Big FAQ 2 takes effect. Will THE list stay the meta? How will Smash Captains adapt? Will Eldar come back this time with Shining Spears instead of the rock, paper, scissors, that is haywire bikes? I can’t wait to see. What I do know though is that the armies we’ll see next year at Iron Halo will be very different. Stay tuned and we’ll let you know! Questions, comments, concerns? Check out our Facebook Page or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org!