Monday, January 27, 2014

Challenge made, challenge accepted!

Challenge made, challenge accepted! Da Masta Cheef and Amy accepted a challenge by my Orks for a rare Friday night 40K brawl.

The Orks aim their Space Hulk at the peaceful Maiden World of Velveeta VII and plunge straight for the heart of the derelict imperial outpost to rip it from the protective embrace of the Eldar Exodites. However the Eldar, with the assistance of their Tau allies, weren't about to let Orks take their sacred ground without a fight, which of course, is music to the ears of the Orks. 

We rolled for the corner deployment zones and the scenario was Big Guns Never Tire. Four Objectives were placed, with one in each Deployment zone and the other two in 'no man's land'.

The battlefield. 

Ork deployment

The Gobsmasha contains Mad Dok Grotsnik and his Burna Boyz. 

Eldar/Tau (Taudar as the 'net says we should call this union) Deployment. 

Two Broadsides overlook the battlefield and the Eldar Exodites. 
 Turn one
(Orks steal the initiative. Yes it is sort of ironic)

The Orks advance. 
 The first round of Ork shooting was largely unimpressive. The warbikes killed a ranger, the shokk attack gun killed a few models, as did the loota boyz, but nothing terribly significant happened. It was Night Fight for the first turn which proved to be highly beneficial to the Eldar.
A ranger dies from Warbike fire!
Taudar Turn 1

The Eldar wipe out the warbikes and the Tau Broadsides get a perfect shot on the Big Mek with the Shokk Attack gun, eliminating him from the game before he can cause any major havoc and giving the Eldar the First Blood Secondary Objective! Drats!

Orks Turn 2

Ouch! Reeling from the loss of my Bigmek, whom, upon reflection, I should've joined to the lootas, I proceeded to try to reverse this loss. Mad Dok Grotsnik leapt from the battlewagon with the burnas and completely annihilated a guardian squad.

There was a squad there...

The shoota boys tear up another guardian squad with shooting and force them to route.
It was a more satisfying round for the Orks, but by no means a game-changer.

Taudar Turn 2

The Shoota boyz are mostly shot to pieces by the Guardian, Harlequins, Tau, etc, that threw everything they had them, even a few insults and expletive phrases the likes of which could make a whole maiden world blush -but they aren't out of the fight yet!

Forces redeploy to deal with the Grotsnik/Burna threat. After weathering a great deal of shooting, thanks to the Cybork bodies and Feel No Pain, they would really be tested by their (and my!) first exposure to D-Sythes! Holy crap are these things NASTY!

Setting up for the kill...
The Wraithguard (appearing as Exodite Knights on Dragons) declared a charge but they lost a guy due to Overwatch, and then botched the charge roll! This left the Harlequin Solitare to charge by himself, which left him in a challenge with Mad Dok Grotsnik. Grotsnik survived the figth, but the Harlequin did not, but in his dying gasp he exploded almost taking taking Grotsnik with him! Thus the Secondary Objective Slay the Warlord was earned by the Orks!

"But before I die...." -BOOM!
Orks Turn 3

Rallied by that victory, Grotsnik and the Burnas chose to finish off the Dire Avengers, while the Deff Dread was working it's way up (it killed a Dire Avenger with a Scorcha). Having given up the other side of the field, I pulled what remained of the Shootas back to my area to try to bolster my force. My Killcannon scattered horribly and missed the broadsides, however the Lootas killed the one with the Railgun, forcing it's companion to flee off of the board! Perhaps the tide was turning?

This side is feeling a bit secure!
Eldar Turn 3
The eldar hold on to their second objective, while the rangers advance through the ruins, closer to the lootas that they hope to kill...

The Eldar advance through the ruins
The Shoota boyz lose even more of their number to the Harlequin and guardians, and Grotsnik and the burnas are finally destroyed by another round of the D-Sythes, making me realize that I should've targeted them rather than the Dire Avengers, but really, at that point it was really a matter of choosing my poison!

Orks Turn 4

The lootas, gobsmasha, and the big shootas from the choppa unit all contribute to the destruction of the Harlequin troupe. Desperate to rid myself of those annoying wraithdragon things, the deff dread declared a charge, only to be utter destroyed by the D3 hits that those 3 template weapons threw down! Seriously, those things are better on Overwatch than they are normally! I shiny crater is all that remained of the Deff Dread!
Eldar Turn 4.

The Eldar would practically shrug off this loss however (although Cheef was bummed by it!) And press on. Now the Lootas were starting to take some hits, and the Shootas were whittled down to just two models. The Gobbsmasha was stunned by the D-Sythes, and the Lootas would be pinned by a plasma missile!

Ork Turn 5. 

My shooting seemed useless as most of the Eldar made cover saves, or what losses they had were negligible. I ran the last two Shoota over to the objective that the Deff Dread was covering. With the gobbsmasha stunned and the Lootas only able to snapfire, my turn was over in a flash. It was looking quite grim...

Eldar Turn 5 

The Gobsmasha was stunned again, and was more or less useless. The lootas take more punishment, but are not pinned again, although their unit would have to be reformed.  One of the two fleeing shootas would be picked off, forcing the sole-survivor to flee for his life!

We rolled, the game ended!

Tallying the scores, the Orks had Warlord (1vp), a Heavy Support kill (1vp) and an objective (3vp) for a total of 5 victory points!

The Eldar/Tau had First Blood (1vp), Warlord (1vp), Line Breaker (1vp) and 2 objectives (6vps) for a whopping total of 9 vps!

Declaring the Eldar the official winner, and feeling that the last turn was bit anti-climatic, we decided to press on...

Unofficial Ork Turn 6

The lone shoota boy, somehow was bolstered by something and rolled a double one -Insane Courage!- thus rallying and getting back into the game, he moved over and took an unclaimed objective!

Insane Courage! Hey, it happens! (he's the red speck by the ruins at the top)
The orks tried to stop the approaching guardians but with the Lootas still pinned, and the Slugga Boyz reluctant to leave the objective, guardians armor was able to absorb any wounding firepower.

End of Ork turn 6.
Unofficial Eldar Turn 6

The Eldar chew into the Slugga Boyz, but only kill off a few of them

Thank Gork for cover saves.
The Wraith Guard Dragons easily get around the stunned Gobbsmasha to deliver the death blow to the ork tank, resulting in an awesome explosion. Due to our mission (Big Guns Never Tire) this would give the Taudar and additional VP, putting out totals up to 8vps Orks and 10vps for the Eldar and Tau.

The Gobbsmasha is smashed!
Unofficial Turn 7

The orc firepower doesn't amount to much, and the slugga boyz and guardians fail to get a charge against each other, so they remain holding onto the objective.

The dragons hunt down and destroy the last Shoota Boy.
The objective is lost as the Wraith Dragons destroy the last Shoota Boy!

But at least the gun platform died!

The dragons were getting fire support from another guardian squad that was holding an objective, but check out this cheesy configuration:

The lost art of Snaking.
Good to see the Exodites utilizing such long-forgotten tactics. (we all had a good chuckle over this).

So the game was stopped here.

The final tally ends up being Orks 5vp and Taudar 10vp.

Looking at it, it was just not possible for the Orcs to win a 'to the death" challenge at this point, but the score was acceptable (as opposed to 0 or 1), and I helped the Eldar out with their whole 'dying race' tagline. As far as tactics go (that I can't exclusively blame on dice) I should've held the Deff Dread back, however I know that if I had managed to connect to the dragons on a charge, it would've been over for them, but those D-Sythes are a game-changer for the unit, and I will have to watch out for them in future match-ups! And failing to have Mad Dok & the Burnas focus exclusively on the Wraithguard/dragons was a horrible mistake!

As I play with and learn more about this 6th edition Eldar Codex, I feel more and more that the Eldar deserve a new banner, one that hasn't been so proudly hailed since 2nd edition:

A maiden on her world. 
It would at least make a pleasant image to behold for my desperate troops as they rush headlong to their deaths!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Screech's Last-minute 40K Extravaganza!

Silly Lion, the Murder Sword is a Chaos artifact! 
Today was Screech's Last Minute-40K Extravaganza! This event is Screech's last gaming weekend until he returns from Basic Training. Yup, Screech is going to go get his own real-life "Imperial Guardsman Uplifting Primer", standard uniform, a love of mess-hall food, shoe polish kit, and basically live through the fun parts of the old Sgt Benjamin TV show. :)

We started many hours earlier than usual (sorry indoor RC people) at the local Hobbytown, and waged war. I didn't battle Screech but I did get to watch some of his two games, which I'll talk about at the end of this post.

Instead I finally had the privilege to play against Kushial's Lions of Harlech Space Marine Chapter. The last time we hit the table together was as allies with my Space Wolves, but on this day they would be foes of my Ultramarines as they Crusaded against each other over a bunch of Mysterious Objectives!

The Ultramarines army, pre-deployment

The Lions of Harlech, pre-deployment. 
 Kushial uses the Imperial Fist Combat Tactics, as I guess the Lions are an Imperial Fist successor Chapter according to his home-brewed background (which, if this is written somewhere I would like to read it and link up for share with anyone reading this blog).
Ultramarine deployment
The Ultramarines deploy first, taking advantage of any cover I could just in case the Lions stole the initiative . In particular I claimed the dilapidated bastion in the center of my Deployement Zone by placing a Devestator Squad on top of it.
The Lions of Harlech deployment
The Lions did like-wise, not anticipating stealing the initiative. They were wise to do so, as the Ultramarines would indeed go first!
1st turn maneuvers 
 The 1st turn was largely uneventful, I managed to kill a singe marine with a lucky hit and put a glancing hit on the Harlech Predator. This would begin an annoying series of events where I would hit with every heavy weapon I had but only roll a 1 for both damage and armor penetration! This strange luck will last much of the game! On the Lions first turn he didn't fair much better but he did get a glancing hit on both my Whirlwind and Venerable Dreadnought with his two Attack Bikes!  Also he a Drop Pod descend and unload an angry Iron Clad Dreadnought which made a path straight to the dilapidated bastion!

The Tac Marines attempt to stop the Iron Clad!
 I declared the Tactical Doctrine for this round. Yes, those Combat Doctrines tokens I made sure proved to be a good idea! I managed to go the whole game without forgetting them! This squad was able to take two Hull Points off of the Iron Clad Dreadnought thanks in part to this doctrine. Also in the enemy deployment zone I unloaded the Sternguard who unleashed a fury of Hellfire blasts intothe Lion Tactical squad killing about a quarter of them. My other tactical squad claimed a bunker which would allow them to also secure an objective. My Venerable Dreadnought would jump out to stare-down the enemy Attack Bike, putting a wound on it but failing to charge it!

The field after the end of Ultramarine Turn 2
 Kushials 2nd turn was more fruitful as well, as his dread pulverized the bastion, killing all but one of the devastators on top of it!

"Whoa! Dude, where's my bastion?" 
 You'll also note in the background that the Sternquard are no longer in front of the Ultramarine Land Raider, they took enough losses to force a route test which they failed, causing them to run behind the Land Raider!

One of the Attack Bikes would attempt to gun for the Venerable Dreadnought's rear armor, only to fail to hit it! Meanwhile the Landraider would come storming at the Dread with guns blazing!
"We have you now!....ok. maybe not..."

I started off by declaring the Assault Doctrine.

Next, I decide to do something nuts, mainly because I just wanted to see it happen and shooting the damned thing just wasn't killing it, so I attempted to ram the Predator, full steam ahead a full 12"! And, as is typically the case, even with an effective Strength 8 hit, I rolled a pen roll of 12, missing the front armor by a point! Still, it looked cool and it was fun forcing his warlord (who detached from the unit) and his tac squad to move out of it's way!
"CLANG!" (waiting for the Arbites to show up to take down the accident report was quite awkward)
My Terminators, along with the Librarian, showed up, managing to take another hull point from the Predator!
For the record, they scattered there!
 The Tactical Combat Squad in the woods killed the other attack bike! By the way, in case you hadn't noticed, this would finally be First Blood for this game!

First blood, and the squad that caused it!
I would declare three assaults this round, the first being the V. Dread against the other Attack Bike, which was a very quick kill, as the dread tore apart the Attack bike with ease!  The other charge was against the Iron Clad dread, which proved to be both fruitless and crazy, as I lost the assault, but the Vet. Sgt, and his remaining charge rolled double "1's" on their route test. Insane courage indeed!
"We will kill you!!!"
My Sternguard would themncharge the Lion's Warlord, only to lose two guys, route, and wait for the Warlord to next charge them!
Notice how his sword hads'nurgle-esque' vibe about it? 
 Which of course he did on Kushials next turn, killing two more Sternguard, however they did manage to finally get a shot through that accursed artificer armor on a snapfire! This time the Sternguard would not run.

Wishing that they had ran away, the two tac marines fighting the Iron Clad are pulled apart like a pork sandwich being eaten by a 2 year old! It was sick!
"Where was I, Oh, yeah, I was going to kill YOU!"
Kushial sent forth his Sternguard from his Land Raider and they cut down most of the Tactical Squad in the woods, but I had two survivors left from that onslaught!


Combat was finally committed! And the death toll was starting to rise! I, for the hope of my lonely Devastator, would declare the Devastator Doctrine!

The Land Raider would finally destroy the Predator in a massive explosion!

Death to the Predator
The Machine Spirit would guide the Heavy Bolters to attack the Devastator Squad in the ruins killing two of them, and my Terminator Squad would move up and finish off the Squad! All-in-all, that was in incredibly successful combination, one that I my dice will rarely ever allow me to pull off!

Death to the Devastators! (and the failed armor saves that caused it!
The Venerable Dread would charge the Lion's Sternguard, killing a bunch, but they refused to route!

 On the Lion's turn, the Lions' Tactical Squad that you can see in the cratered woods, had been taking hits from the Whirlwind for most of the game, and were even pinned on turn three! Now the spot the Terminators and decided to attack them, and they manage to kill one!

Now the Iron Clad is just thirsting for my Devastator's blood, and he charges! I snapfire and hit, only to miss the necessary glancing hit result that would've felled this massive murder-machine!

Yeah, this guy died.

The Terminators shoot up, charge, and wipe-out the  tactical squad in the woods. Apparently that was only event worth documenting in that round for my turn anyway, although my land raider would re position to get a better line of fire on the tactical squad that was watching Lion's Captain dispatch the rest of my Sternguard.

"Look boss, another fight to join!"
 On Kushial's turn, the Iron Clad moved toward the bunker which housed my remaining Tactical Combat Squad who was holding in objective. The Land Raider was barreling down my my Whirlwind, and picking off the remaining Tactical Squad in the woods, in fact, there just one guy left (the missile launcher trooper!),

Finally on his assault Phase, the Lions took down the Venerable Dread!

"Haha! Look, he's fallen and can't get up!" -Last words of the traitorous Lion's of Harlech Sternguard
 Kushial rolled the dice to see if the game ended. It was VERY close at this point, as attrition was wearing us down on both sides. The dice spoke, and the game would go on!


Finally standing still, the Lander Raider annihilates the Warlord and the Tactical Squad! The Objective is now free!
Imagine lots of red vapor all around that objective marker
 The Librarian and the surviving Terminators would kill off the rest of the Sternguard, consolidating toward the Lion's Land Raider...
"What do you say lads, think we can take out that Land Raider?"

On Kushial's turn, the Iron Clad, in a desperate move to deny me the objective at the bunker, charges it and destroys it, killing everyone inside but the Veteran Sgt! (Just a side note: this is a bunker made from the template found in the Warhammer 40,000 4th edition hardcover)
Iron Clad doing what an Iron Clad was made to do! Destroying buildings! And loving it!!!

The Land Raider finally wrecks the Whirlwind, while the sole survivor of the Tac squad dives and ducks within the cover of the trees! 

And the game ends!
Ultramarines 6vps (First Blood, Warlord, Linebreaker, and Objective)
Lions of Harlech 1vp. (Linebreaker)
My MVP unit: First Blood and the Objective, earning 4 points!
 It was a fun game, like most fun games, it wasn't obvious who was going to win until the final round as it was very close. Kushial and I had very few models left, and he only had three vehicles left (Land Raider, a Drop Pod, and the Iron Clad). Another round, and It's not likely that either of my lone Tac Marines would've survived!

Over on the other tables:

Screech vs. Murl

Screech, proving the internet wrong by winning against Murl's hard-to-beat Nurgle army! It was a fun game to watch the end of.

Nurgle vs. Tryanids
 A big battle broke on the table that Kushial and I played our game on! Indeed, they hardly moved the scenery much! Scott, Skylar, The Bob, and Hiveangel were having a two-on-two battle royale! You can read the battle report here.

Deployment of the big battle!
Blood Angels opening shots!
Some of the new players (sorry i don't recall your names!) had a Dark Angel vs. a Dark Eldar/Eldar force. I believe the Eldar won.
The hunters hunted!

And finally, just as I was leaving, the 2nd turn was starting on a game between Screech's 'Nids and the Tau and Inqusition force of Amy and the Da Masta Cheef, which hopefully he'll discuss on his blog this week.

C'mon! Space Truck'n! 

It was good day at Hobbytown, with a good turn out and a lot of games being played! I hope this was a good send off for you Screech, I know we'll await your return!

I'm curious to know the results of all of the other games, so if the other players could leave those results in the comments, for posterity sake, that would be grand!