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Battle Report – Archeotech Hunt

05/25/2015 Leave a comment

Today, Trenchmate Tim and I took full advantage of the bank holiday and played the new 40K mission, Archeotech Hunt, which can be found in White Dwarf 68.

It’s a simple Altar of War mission but with a different, and incredibly good fun, mysterious objective table.  One player takes the role of Explorator (me in this case) who has to deploy and move first and the deployment map is Vanguard Strike.  Three victory points are awarded for every objective under control at game end as well is the usual ones for Linebreaker, First Blood and Slay the Warlord.

Army Lists

We settled on a 2,500 point limit and pitted my Heralds of Desolation Chaos Marines and Kabal of The Sundered Heart Dark Eldar against Tim’s Reavers Redemptor and Dark Angels.

The Explorators

The Heralds of Desolation

HQ

  • Warlord. Marax The Desolater: Daemon Prince of Tzeentch, a Level Three Psyker with Power Armour, Wings, Close Combat Weapon and Spell Familiar.
  • Valaris: Level Three Sorcerer with Mark of Tzeentch, Power Armour, Aura of Dark Glory, Bolt Pistol, Force Sword and Spell Familiar.

Troops

  • The Disciples of Change: 15 man Cultist Squad with auto pistols, close combat weapons and a heavy flamer
  • Squad Crastor: 9 man Chaos Space Marine Squad Mark of Tzeentch, with Bolt Guns, Bolt Pistols, Close Combat Weapons, Melta Gun, Icon of Flame, Power Weapon (Castor), Combi-Melta (Castor) and Rhino with Havoc Launcher and Combi-Flamer

Elites

  • The Red Butchers: 10 man Khorne Berserker Squad with Bolt Pistols,  2 Plasma Pistols and Rhino with Dirge Caster
  • Novorus The Fallen: Helbrute with Reaper Autocannon, Combi-Bolter and Power Fist

Fast Attack

  • Riders of Excess: 5 man Chaos Bike Squad with Mark of Slaanesh, Icon of Excess, Bolt Pistols, Close Combat Weapons and Power Weapon (Champion Only)
  • Hope’s Lament: Heldrake with Baleflamer

Heavy Support

  • Bonebreaker: Predator with Autocannon, Heavy Bolter Sponsors and Combi-Bolter

 

The Kabal of The Sundered Heart

HQ

  • Kystis, The Architect of Flesh: Haemonculus with Gnarlskin, Close Combat Weapons and Stinger Pistol

Troops

  • Bringers of Ruin: Ten man Kabalite Warrior Squad with Dark Lance, Blaster, Blast Pistol (Sybarite Only), Agoniser (Sybarite Only) and Raider with Dark Lance, Night Shields, Splinter Racks and Enhanced Aethersails
  • The Red Veil: Ten man Wych Squad with Splinter Pistols, Close Combat Weapons, Plasma Grenades,  one set of Razor Flails, one set of Hydra Gauntlets, Agoniser (Hekatrix Only), Blast Pistol (Hekatrix Only) and Raider with Blaster, Night Shields, Splinter Racks and Enhanced Aethersails

Elites

  • The Shadowmen: Five man Mandrake Squad with Close Combat Weapons

Fast Attack

  • Winged Malice: 5 man Scourge Squad with Splinter Carbines, Heat Lance, Blaster, Plasma Grenades, Blast Pistol (Solarite Only) and Agoniser (Solarite Only)

 

Fortifications

  • Ageis Defence Line with Quad Gun

 

The Enemy

(Idiot that I am, I forgot to ask Tim for a copy of his roster but if he sends one over I’ll update the article.  Until then, this is the best I can remember.)

Reavers Redemptor

HQ

  • Warlord. Captain with Storm Shield, Power Weapon and probably a Bolt Pistol and Power Armour.  (The model’s a lovely kitbash and is slightly larger than normal, but I’m fairly certain he’s not wearing Tactical Dreadnought Armour)
  • Librarian, Level Two Psyker with Force Staff, Bolt Pistol and Power Armour

Troops

  • Ten man Tactical Squad with Missile Launcher, Grav Gun and Drop Pod with Missile Launcher
  • Ten man Tactical Squad with Missile Launcher, Special Weapon and Drop Pod with Storm Bolter
  • Five Man Scout Squad with Heavy Bolter
  • Five Man Scout Squad with Sniper Rifles and Missile Launcher

Elites

  • Five Man Sternguard Squad with Plasma Gun

Fast Attack

  • 3 Vehicle Land Raider Squadron with Stormtalon Escort

Heavy Support

  • Predator with Twin Linked Lascannon and Lascannon Sponsons
  • Vindicator
  • Land Raider Crusader

 

Dark Angels

HQ

  • Ezekiel, Level Three Librarian with Artificer Armour, Master-Crafted Bolt Pistol, Traitor’s Bane, Book of Salvation and Psychic Hood

Troops

  • Ten man Tactical Squad with Heavy Bolter and Special Weapon

Heavy Support

  • Five man Devastator Squad with Missile Launchers

 

Officio Assassinorum

  • Culexus Assassin with Animus Speculum, Etherium and Psyk-Out Grenades.

 

The Game

Turn One

Turn 1 - The forces of Chaos and their allies move out

Turn 1 – The forces of Chaos and their allies move out, being met by the armoured might of the Adeptus Astartes

The followers of the Corpse God were unable to seize the imitative so my forces moved first.  My Scourges jumped forward to claim their first objective which turned out to be a Shadowsource Drive, this allowed me to enforce the Night Fighting rule for as long as I controlled the objective, a fact that saved my hide on more than one occasion!

I had to reverse the Rhino carrying Squad Crastor as I’d put my Sorcerer in with them and Tim had infiltrated his Assassin close enough to potentially affect the warp charge generated from him.  In doing so, the Rhino with my Khorne loonies jumped forward, intent on taking out this synthskin-clad nightmare.

The Psychic Phase was a let down as I was unable to summon any daemons and nothing else was useful at that time.

Other than that, I really didn’t do much in the first turn.  I took a few pot shots with my heavy weapons which took out a couple of Scouts and a Tactical Marine who was standing in the wrong place, but my initial goals were achieved as my force was now in the right position to advance on the remaining five objectives.

Tim meanwhile dropped his first pod behind the Manufactorum (pictured), while his Land Raider advanced down the middle of the board and fried one of my Mandrakes who’d infiltrated close to his deployment zone.

All was going swimmingly until his Predator blew up my Berserker’s Rhino, forcing them into the guns of his just-dropped Tactical Squad who cut down two of them.

Turn 2

XXX

Hope’s Lament takes to the field and makes for the enemy

My Heldrake arrived and immediately zoomed forward, intent on securing the flank.  I also moved my two raiders along side it (but just out of One Eye Open range).  I also had a ‘fuck it’ moment and flew Marax The Desolater out from his cover and moved my Helbrute up to support him.  I also disembarked my Chaos Marines to take the nearby objective then moved the empty Rhino up to support the Berserkers.  I also moved my surviving Mandrakes through cover to engage with Ezekiel and his Tactical Squad retinue.

Psychically, things still weren’t going well.  Marax attempted to again summon some daemons but was not only Denied by Tim, he also suffered a Perils of The Warp wound but fortunately didn’t crash to the ground.  Unfazed, he then proceeded to burn some of Tim’s annoying little Scouts.

Moving on to the shooting phase, my  Combi-Flamer-equipped Rhino gave the Assassin a bit of a toast, knocking off one wound, while the Berserkers took another with a hail of bolts before charging into combat with it.  Despite the fact that they were attacking at WS1, the sheer numbers of them reduced the Imperial Agent to a nasty smear down the side of the Manufactorum.

Battle 05

Sometimes life’s just not fair! Please note that the Culexus Assassin has cunningly disguised itself as an Astra Militarum Commissar. Tim had forgotten his model so I lent him the most appropriate one I had.

On the other side of the battlefield I attempted the same thing with my Mandrakes.  They managed to take out one of Ezekiel’s bodyguard with a baleblast but lost a member to overwatch on their charge.  In the combat they managed to kill another Marine but honours were even and the combat would continue.

The Unforgiven stand strong against the horror of a Mandrake assault.

The Unforgiven stand strong against the horror of a Mandrake assault.

Tim wasted no time.  His Land Speeder Squadron and escort arrived and headed straight for the Raiders coming up the flank.  Their combined fire power took out the lead craft and the successive attack from the nearby Dark Angels reduced the number of now-grounded Wyches to four.

Intent on avenging the dead Assassin (I’m sure the invoice the Reavers Chapter Master will receive will be somewhat large), the nearby Tactical Squad pummelled the Berserkers, leaving only two standing.  Also helping out was his Predator which nonchalantly dispatched my remaining Rhino.

Most annoyingly though was his Devastator squad who managed to knock a wound off my Daemon Prince with a Flakk Missile, fortunately though he remained airborne.

Finally, the Land Raider rounded on the remaining Dark Eldar Raider.  Despite significantly superior fire power, it only managed to stun the crew and knock off a couple of hull points, looks like paper armour is useful after all!

Turn 3

The game really was on a knife edge by this point.  We’d both secured a couple of objectives and the rest were very for the taking.  I certainly find the third and fourth turns to be the most exciting, it’s at this point that mistakes will really hurt you and one dice roll may be all it takes to make or ruin your day.

I started well, my Slaaneshi bikers came on and turbo boosted down the middle, intent on causing some havoc.  Now that my Haemonculus had arrived at the Shadowsource Drive, I jumped my Scourges next to the side of the Land Raider, hoping that their Heat Lance and Blasters would do some damage.

My Daemon Prince grounded himself among the undoubtedly ecstatic cultists so that he could charge the marines on the Manufactorum the following turn.  Now that he was safe, I turned my Helbrute around and sent it after the Crusader.

My surviving Wyches moved towards the Tactical Squad that had cost them dear, blasting them with splinters but doing no damage, at this time anyway.

Meanwhile, my Heldrake roared overhead and rounded on the Devastator Squad who had the temerity to shoot at his master.

The Psychic Phase finally stated working for me and Marax summoned a squad of Pink Horrors which were placed next to the surviving Berserkers to help shore them up in their assault on the Marines contesting the Manufactorum.  They wasted no time in blasting them with some Flickering Fire which ate up a couple of the post-human dullards.

My shooting phase was, in a word, fun.  The Quad Gun the Cultists were amusing themselves with knocked the pesky Stormtalon from the sky while the ‘Drake’s Baleflamer cooked all four of the Devastators with missile launchers, setting the remaining squad member on fire.

The Scourges certainly did better than last time (they had a little deep strike mishap and got splattered all over the field) and, while they didn’t take out the Land Raider, they knocked off two hull points and left the crew stunned.

The assault phase was certainly bloody.  My Mandrakes failed to make any headway with Ezekiel and his two surviving marines, but likewise neither did they and the combat continued.

Nearby my Wyches charged the other half of the Dark Angel Tactical Squad.  Their overwatch fire took out all but the Hekatrix and I reasonably thought it was all over for that plucky lady.  Boy was I wrong.  With one flick of her Agoniser, she dispatched the remaining marines then consolidated to take their objective.

Tim started his movement phase by taking a bit of a gamble.  He attempted to bring down his remaining drop pod in my deployment zone, this would enable him to take the Shadowsource Drive with ease and allow him to play havoc in an almost completely undefended part of the board.  At least it would have had he not scattered off the board, forcing a roll on the Deep Strike Mishap table which resulted in me placing the pod behind his Predator, a position which would effectively rule that whole squad out for the game.  Harsh words were said.

Despite this hilarious setback, Tim is not a man to take things lying down; he debarked his Warlord, Librarian and Sternguard from the Land Raider and squared up to the combined threat of the Scourges, Raider full of Kabalite Warriors, and the approaching Chaos Bikers.

His shooting phase took care of all the Scourges and two of the five Bikers but still did nothing to the Kabalite Raider (miracles do happen) while around the Manufactorum, his depleted Tactical Squad managed to take a second wound off my Daemon Prince.

It was bound to happen, but my Mandrake’s luck ran out and the Chief Librarian of the Dark Angels swatted them back to the aether and the Tactical Squad at the Manufactorum saw off the last of the Berserkers.  Nevertheless all this may have been too late as Tim’s forces were scattered and significantly depleted, it was looking good for the forces of darkness.

Turn 4

At this point, it was really my game to lose so I was going to do my best and not give in to my usual tactical idiocy.  I moved my Helbrute across the field towards the displaced Tactical Squad, this may seem petty but they were still a threat and the only other option would be to exit the field and go into Ongoing Reserves.  At least this way I’d be placed to fly back towards my lines on turn five.

My surviving Raider moved up the field towards Ezekiel’s position and deployed the Kabalite Warriors within while my Daemon Prince jumped behind the Tactical Marines on the Manufactorum and the Pink Horrors moved to box them in from the other side.

Knowing the outcome was probably not looking good for my surviving bikers, I decided to sacrifice them and charged the Reavers’ Captain.  At the very least they might tar pit his squad for a turn or two.

I used up all my Warp Charges on psychic shooting attacks from my Daemon Prince and Horrors which further reduced the Marines in their path while upfield the Heldrake took out eight of the wandering Tactical Squad with its Baleflamer.

Finally I shot at Ezekiel’s unit to no avail before charging them with the Kabalite Warriors.

Unsurprisingly, my Marax and the Horrors destroyed the surviving Tactical Marines and claimed another objective.  I now held four.  Likewise it was no shock that Tim’s Captain took out the remaining bikes, however the Kabalite Warriors remained locked in combat with Ezekiel and co.

At this point Tim conceded but we played out a bit of the final turn to see if he could shoot down my Heldrake to deny me a VP for Linebreaker, which he managed.

The dust settles and the Imperium retreats to fight another day.

The dust settles and the Imperium retreats to fight another day.

 

Final Score

13 – Heralds of Desolation and Kabal of The Sundered Heart (4×3 for the objectives, 1 for First Blood)

 6 – Reavers Redemptor and Dark Angels

 

Conclusion

This was a very enjoyable game, not only because it is a very rare win for me, especially against Tim.  The mission was a fairly standard secure objective setup but what made it stand out was the special Mysterious Objective table which conveyed very potent benefits to those who controlled them.  My forces, and in particular my Dark Eldar, survived significant amounts of concentrated fire thank to my ability to keep Night Fighting in play and likewise Tim was only able to shoot down my Heldrake thanks to obtaining an Icarus Skyrule Engine.

It does go to show what a simple alteration to the standard rules can do for a game and while it likely too random for competitive play, it’s ideal for an afternoon session between friends.

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A Bit of A Spanking

02/08/2015 2 comments

Well, that could have gone better…

Today, Tim and I played a 2,500 point Maelstrom of War mission pitting his alliance of Reavers Redemptor and Dark Angels/Guardians of The Covenant against my Heralds of Desolation with some Dark Eldar who happened to be passing thorough.

My army, ready to deploy.  So full of hope.

My army, ready to deploy. So full of hope.

It started so well.  I took the first turn and quickly secured some VPs thorough first blood and taking objectives.

Turn one

Turn one

 

Wyches of the Cult of Red Grief clear some Dark Angels from an objective.  In their haste to make the first kill they don't notice the rest of the Unforgiven racing to avenge their fallen brethren...

Wyches of the Cult of Red Grief clear some Dark Angels from an objective. In their haste to make the first kill they don’t notice the rest of the Unforgiven racing to avenge their fallen brethren…

The tide of the battle truly turned when I got cocky with Marax, my Daemon Prince warlord.  In the first turn his psychic attacks caused significant damage and his stat line made me think he’d be able to weather a turn of fire, especially as he was flying.

Fucking Flakk Missiles.

Wounded, he crashed to the ground, and was then picked apart by the combined fire power of several squads.  He didn’t even get the chance to summon any Bloodletters!

With my main psyker gone, Tim took his Culexis Assassin and went after my Sorcerer.  Killing him and his bodyguard (with a little help from the Reaver’s Chapter Master and retinue), the creature was finally brought low by the massed fire of fifteen Cultists.

What didn’t help at all was Heldrake and Terminators getting lost en route to the battle, but the time the turned up it was all over.

My tardy Heldrake and Terminators finally make an appearance.

My tardy Heldrake and Terminators finally make an appearance.

Tim expertly dismantled the remaining elements of my force by the end of the fourth turn.

The final few Heralds make their last stand on top of a manufactorum.

The final few Heralds make their last stand on top of a manufactorum.

What did I learn?  Well once again my impetuousness significantly hurt me early on.  I need to have a better plan for when my reserves don’t turn up and I also need to work on better delivery mechanisms for my Berserkers (so, I basically need a Land Raider).  I also have to remember that just because my Daemon Prince is immortal, doesn’t mean he can’t be banished mid-battle!

Anyhoo, I had a great time against a fine opponent and an excellent chap. After he left I decided to build some more units which I hope to have ready for the next time we meet.  However, rather than getting some power armoured traitors built, I went for a far sexier option.

More Wyches and a new Archon

More Wyches and a new Archon

My plan is to pick up a third Raider next month.  Hopefully next time my Dark Eldar will be a true ally rather than a point sink.  We’ll see 🙂

Massacre in Lustria

02/03/2013 Leave a comment

Believe it or not, I haven’t played a game of anything involving little plastic men since last October so I jumped at the chance to take part in a six player, Good versus Evil 4,500 point Warhammer barney today.  I got together with the other chaps who make up the Rock in The Badlands players and spent Sunday afternoon fighting over a ruined Bretonnian Chapel in deepest Lustria.  The rules were simple, three players a side and a basic victory point tally would decide the winning team.

The Armies

The Forces of Good

Me – Bretonnian

Tim – The Empire

Sam – Lizardmen

 

The Forces of Evil

TMG – Vampire Counts

Ian – Chaos Daemons

Steve – Chaos Daemons

 

My army

Grand Army of Parravon (1,501)

 Lord (252 pts)

 Sir Redemond of Parravon – Bretonnian Lord (110pts)

– Vow of Questing (+12pts)

– Barded Warhorse (+21pts)

– Shield (+3pts)

– Great Weapon (+6pts)

– Insignia of The Quest (+30pts)

– The Ruby Goblet (+30pts)

– Virtue of Knightly Temper (40pts)

Heroes (319pts)


Eleanore – Damsel (70pts) 
– Level 2 Mage (+35pts)
– Warhorse (+10pts)

– Silver Mirror (+40pts)

Sir Ectorde – Paladin (60pts)
– Valorous Standard (+50pts)
– Barded Warhorse (14pts)
– Virtue of Knightly Temper (40pts)

Core (930pts)

Sir Michael’s Fellowship – Knights Errant (181pts)
– Cavalier (0pts)
– 8 x Errants (160pts)
– Musician (7pts)
– Standard Bearer (14pts)
– Special Rule – Faith Against Adversity

Sir Hugues’ Brothers in Arms – Knights of The Realm (312pts)
– Gallant (0pts)
– 12 x Knights of The Realm (288pts)
– Musician (8pts)
– Standard Bearer (16pts)

Jacques’ Cronies – Men-At-Arms (87pts)
– Halberds (0pts)
– 12 x Men-At-Arms (601pts)
– Musician (5pts)
– Standard Bearer (10pts)
– Yeomen Warden (12pts)

Filthy Eric’s Lads – Peasant Bowmen (175pts)
– 22 x Peasant Bowmen with light armour (161pts)
– Musician (5pts)
– Standard Bearer (10pts)
– Villein (5pts)

Old Victor’s Boys – Peasant Bowmen (175pts)
– 22 x Peasant Bowmen with ight armour (161pts)
– Musician (5pts)
– Standard Bearer (10pts)
– Villein (5pts)

The Battle

Well, it didn’t go so well for the good guys!  We botched a lot of our deployment and struggled to make any headway against the enemy for half of the game.  That said, my Knights of The Realm and Lord along with Sam’s Saurus Cavalry and Oldblood managed to hold the right flank for the entire game however it was far from enough to win the day and we stopped tallying the score in the final turn when we realised that the bad guys were leading us 1,184 to 525!

However, we all had a great time and I thoroughly enjoyed catching up with some of the lads I hadn’t seen in a while and I learned a heck of a lot about how my fledgling Bretonnians work in larger numbers.  That and the fact that Lizardmen cavalry are scary hard.  Oh, and that Terrorgheists are quite capable of screaming nine Knights to death in a single turn!

Stupid dead bat.

The Rock in The Badlands – Eleonore’s Second Letter

07/11/2012 Leave a comment

Excerpt from the records of the Dukedom of Parravon. Correspondence dated c1550 (2528 Imperial) to Sir Redemond of Parravon, from Eleonore (a damsel of The Lady, attached to the court of Sir Redemond).

 

My Noble Lord,

 

Since our last correspondence our fortunes have been mixed. Sir Ectorde and his retinue arrived safely some four days ago, they are battered and weary from their arduous journey yet their spirits remain high and have uplifted us all.

En route to our camp, Sir Ectorde encountered an insensible man of indeterminate breeding, by your nephew’s account he was on the precipice of death. In his dying moments he told that his settlement was attacked by a horde of rat men who put all they could find to the sword.

As you know all too well, these fell creatures are drawn to sources of Warp Stone so upon hearing Ectorde’s report I immediately assembled a scouting party and sought out this place.

Upon our arrival we found the village in ruins, half-eaten bodies lay everywhere and I pray to The Lady that the poor wretches were dead before the feasting began. Of the Skaven however we saw no sign until it was far too late.

Seemingly from nowhere our foes appeared in numbers far exceeding our own. Almost immediately Sir Michael called a charge and his fellowship sallied into the waiting blades of the enemy’s most capable warriors. I believe Imperial scholars refer to these creatures as ‘Stormvermin’. At the same time, Sir Hugues took his knights round our left flank and overran a wretched unit of sickly looking creatures who did more damage to their benighted kin as they scrambled from the field.

Alas, this early success was not to last and before my eyes our knights were immersed in a seemingly unending tide of greasy fur and sharp claws. From my place within Sir Michael’s Fellowship I saw our indentured bowmen suffer horrendous casualties and while our nobles faired far better I knew it was only a matter of time before the sheer number of these vile creatures would be the end of us.

Knowing this, I ordered the retreat and quit the field. The Lady was kind to us that day and, while many of Bretonnia’s noble sons were injured, all were able to fight again.

That night as I slept I had a vision of a blighted forest which restless dead had claimed as their own. I was certain that somewhere among the trees would be a quantity of the rock we seek and that other forces were marshalling for the same purpose.

At sunrise I reviewed the latest reports from our yeomen scouts and after meditating further I knew where we needed to go. The forest in question was a two day march from the camp so we had no time to loose.

Our journey was for the most part uneventful however as we drew ever closer to our destination I began to sense a malevolent, familiar, presence and I was certain that the necromantic horde we encountered before was intent on claiming the forest’s prize.

As we entered the tree line I observed pockets of etheric vapour drifting throughout the forest, wherever they went any creature caught within exhibited strange and unpredictable behaviour. Some even succumbed to the foulness. This hindered our progress significantly and too soon our scouts sighted elements of the undead force we had encountered before.

Unlike our first encounter I detected a change in the balance of power between myself and the enemy’s foul mage, where before I found his presence near unbearable I felt the power of The Lady swell within me, I felt certain of victory.

Immediately I ordered our battle line to form, my wariness of the prowling mists proved correct as it soon touched a unit of bowmen forcing them to withdraw from their position.

Soon the vile corpse army made themselves known; unlike our previous encounter I ordered our cavalry to hold while our bowmen unleashed torrents of arrows into the enemy’s midst. Before too long I felt the enemy necromancer’s dark magics building and was certain he was about to attempt to augment his forces, I attempted to counter this but was too late and to my despair I saw those we had felled rise and resume their places in the foe’s ranks.

Here The Lady made her presence known. Just as I thought all was lost we saw the deadly mists move towards the enemy’s lines and cause untold damage. After a further volley of arrows I ordered Sir Michael’s men to charge the unit of skeletons approaching our left flank, I joined them as they headed to glory.

The combat was long and arduous, we inflicted heavy losses on them but like all such creatures they did not break. Only my magics kept us from harm but I knew that this was unlikely to last since unlike us they could replenish their number, or so I thought.

As the battle progressed I felt the winds of magic more strongly than I have ever before, whenever my foe attempted to conjure reinforcements I easily blocked his attempts and the times were I was unable to he was unable to complete his incantations. Thanks to this we were able to see off their heavy infantry and, with Sir Hugues and his knights we rounded on the remaining enemy forces and drive them from the woods.

After the last of the creatures had made their escape we uncovered what they coveted, in a clearing was a crater fully ten metres across and in that we found ten sizeable rocks of the purest warpstone I have ever encountered. Returning it to our camp cost the lives of three mules and five peasants, as I’m sure you’ll agree my lord these were nescessary losses.

There is much more of this rock out there my lord and I am more convinced than ever that the situation in the Badlands needs more attention. I petition you to send whatever you can spare from the northern front to aid us for I fear that in spite of this victory far darker times lie ahead.

I am your humble servant,

 

Eleonore

The Rock in The Badlands – Eleonore’s First Letter

05/29/2012 Leave a comment

Excerpt from the records of the Dukedom of Parravon. Correspondence dated c1550 (2528 Imperial) to Sir Redemond of Parravon, from Eleonore (a damsel of The Lady, attached to the court of Sir Redemond).

 

 

My Noble Lord,

 

I write to you with heavy heart, for events have not been kind to your kin. We entered the Badlands ahead of schedule and accordingly made camp at the foot of the Dragonback Mountains. From there I took a small detachment of knights and men and proceeded towards the area highlighted in The Lady Madeline’s prophecy. We were however not the first to arrive in this benighted realm.

 

On the third day we encountered a small force of undead ransacking a small settlement. I took advice from your nephew, Sir Eldred, who claimed that these creatures posed no threat to those whose cause was just and carried The Lady’s blessing. How wrong we were. Unbeknownst to us they were lead by a Wraith of considerable power, no matter what casualties we inflicted by blade or by arrow, his magics continued to swell the enemy’s ranks. We were overcome and, to my everlasting shame, had no choice but to leave the field.

 

If only this was all I had to report. That night we made camp about half a league from the site of battle. While I slumbered a vision of The Lady came to me, imploring me to return to the village to make amends for my failure. Had only I known what was awaiting me there I would have fallen on my sword and spared you and the Kingdom further shame.

 

We returned at first light and found the village deserted, of the undead we encountered the day before, nothing remained bar the stench of evil and decay. As we were making preparations to advance towards our objective I fell to the ground as a wave of pure malevolence swept through the aether.

 

As I was returned to my mount I saw creatures of pure evil coalescing on the village boundary. Quickly we formed a battle line to meet this dire threat however once again we were cruelly outmatched. The daemons outmanoeuvred our forces with merciless ease and we had no choice but to retreat. As we were disengaging I saw in the distance that a unit of bowmen had been cut off by the vile creatures. I am proud to report that they sold their lives dearly, taking many of these aberrations with them on their final journey.

 

We marched at speed back to our camp to resupply and two days later we again set out to our objective. This time I decided to guide our forces through a forested area farther south to our original fateful route and, for a time, the fates were kind to us. On the fifth day our outriders reported a small force of armed men who were also heading, albeit on a different trajectory, to our destination. After hearing the scouts’ description of their livery, Sir Hugues (who as you no doubt recall has spent must time with our Imperial neighbours) concluded that they were most likely members of the Averland State Army.

 

While I was sorely tempted to parlay with the Imperial troops, as our armies drew closer I senses a disquieting presence emanating from within their ranks. This person or thing within their army was shielding himself from me, I could not ascertain his intentions and with the deepest regret I ordered our forces to make ready for battle.

 

To my dying day I will never forget the ferocity of what followed. Battle was joined in earnest with both sides trading missiles of arrow and shot while our respective warriors manoeuvred for position. Our Knights struck first and inflicted a terrible toll on the servants of Karl Franz all the while our bowmen mercilessly cut down all that their arrows could find.

 

The men of Averland did not stand idly by met our charge with a steely resolve one cannot help but admire. We were evenly matched; all it would take would be one singular moment or individual to break this bloody deadlock. 

 

It was at this point that a unit of spearmen appeared led by formidable warrior, evidently the man in command of the army. Our Knights and I charged this unit and each side inflicted terrible casualties, all of a sudden your nephew was thrown from his horse by this captain and before I could draw breath I was fighting him for my very life.

 

With one stroke of his sword he broke my blade and as he prepared to strike again I made myself ready to meet The Lady. However death did not find me today, he turned his blade at the last moment and instead delivered a blow to my head with the side of his blade and I fell into darkness.

 

I woke in the Imperial camp to find my wounds dressed and my body unsullied. At my bedside was the warrior who bested me who introduced himself as Captain Helmut Gerstein. He told me that he and his men had respected our code of honour and those Knights who survived the battle had been treated for their wounds and were residing in the tent next to mine.

 

Captain Gerstein told me that he and his men were here at the behest of a mage called Emmanuel Gant who is travelling with them, I am certain that this Gant is the source of the presence I sensed just before the bloodbath. The Captain proceeded to tell me that once I felt strong enough he would escort our survivors back to our camp under a flag of truce, seeing true honour in his heart I accepted.

 

Three days later, as good as his word, we were taken back to our camp. It pains me to tell you that of the knights that I left with only Sir Hugues of Quenelles, Sir Jacques or Lyonesse, Sir Aldebald of Montfort and Sir Hrodbert of Carcassonne survive.

 

Upon the return to our camp I received news that your son has encountered difficulty on his journey to meet us. Sir Aymeric reports that upon entering the Forest of Loren they encountered a sizeable force of Beastmen intent on pillaging the realm. Honour bound to assist he dispatched your younger son, Sir Ectorde, with your standard, thirty brave knights and as many men as could be spared to continue the journey to meet us. Once the Beastmen are vanquished, Sir Aymeric and the rest of his force will complete their journey.

 

I pray to The Lady that they are not too late

 

 

I am your humble servant,

 

Eleonore

 

 


 

 

 

 


The 31 Year Old Virgin

11/30/2011 2 comments

Well, not quite but bear with me on this one. You see, I have a confession to make.

Until last Saturday I had never experienced a day-long gaming session with multiple games and opponents since coming back into the hobby two years ago after an eleven year hiatus. Since both the games and I have for the most part changed immensely since then it’s very much like starting afresh. Will all this in mind it was with a mixture of excitement and trepidation that I drove to Melrose in the Scottish Borders with a good friend and fellow gamer by my side and our 40K armies in the boot.

The rules were simple; you had to bring a legal 1,200 point army containing no special characters to fight randomly generated missions from the main rule book. The lack of complexity and the low points cost meant that it should be possible to fit in at least two games each, maybe more if time permitted.

The point limit presented me with many difficulties; as a guard player I’m used to throwing platoons of troops to their deaths with callous disregard while masses of tanks pound the enemy into submission, this time however I had think very small indeed. After days of indecision I decided to go for the following force:

Army List

The basic plan was simple, the infantry elements of my platoon would advance under the cover of my Exterminator and Scout Sentinels while the Heavy Weapons Squad and Leman Russ would provide ranged support. The Vets would be deployed either in support of the main push or to open up a second front in order to capture any objectives or harry the enemy and my Storm Troopers would be kept in reserve so that they could deep strike wherever they could cause maximum disruption. With my force and tactics in place I was as confident as I could be that I’d be able to acquit myself well no matter what I was to face…

Game 1

Opponent: Necrons

Mission: Annihilation

Deployment: Spearhead

Bloody hell but this was a fun game! I’d never played against the new Necrons before so I was really looking forward to seeing how these undead space dudes now worked and I have to say I was very, very impressed.

The brave men of the 57th Menasan face the Necron menace,

Fortunately I managed to deploy and move first so I wasted no time unleashing bloody hellfire onto the lines of remorseless automata and was heartened to see two squads suffer considerable casualties. I was less than impressed a few minutes later when virtually all of the casualties rose back up and rejoined their units!

Not impressed by their refusal to do the honourable thing and stay dead I decided to advance my infantry squads and Exterminator towards their line, this was my first major mistake since it brought the tank within 12’’ of a Scarab swarm. In the days running up to the battle the excellent Doc Bungle of Miniature Musings of a Bear attempted to impart his wisdom onto me. In particular he stressed that under no circumstances should I let anything, especially armour, within the assault range of Scarabs. You know what, he was bloody right; they proceeded to latch onto my lovely tank and knock four points off its armour value!

Not wishing to repeat my mistake I had my Vets deal with the beasties in the following turn but the damage was done, my Exterminator had less armour than a Dark Eldar skimmer and was too much of a liability to use in a frontal assault. Instead I decided to consolidate and blast at the Necrons with everything I had. This tactic was quite successful, I managed to inflict an increasing amount of permanent casualties while only loosing a single infantry squad in its entirely. However at this point the Lychguard struck.

Unfortunately for my opponent, the Lychguard were just out of assault range so I disembarked my vets nearby and issued them with First Rank Fire… which remarkably destroyed the unit! My weakened Exterminator then turned its full fire power onto the accompanying Necron Lord who was very quickly reduced to a puddle of Necroderm. Just as I was starting my ever-so-sexy victory dance the Lord’s Resurrection Orb kicked in and both it and the entire squad rose to their feet. On the next turn they made short work of the Exterminator before routing the Vets the following turn.

Elsewhere the battle was going more my way. My opponent’s Monolith was forced to roll on the Deep Strike Mishap Table so I elected to deploy it in the far corner of the battlefield which greatly limited its effectiveness. My surviving infantrymen were trading fire with the entrenched Necron Warriors and were steadily reducing their number. Everything was very evenly matched.

The stalwart Imperial Guard dig in and trade fire with the unholy automata.

As turn five drew to a close we both had an objective look at the state of play and decided to call it a glorious draw. We reckoned that both sides had inflicted an equal amount of damage, but more importantly we’d had a bloody fantastic time. All games should end this well.

Game 2

Opponent: Grey Knights

Mission: Seize Ground

Deployment: Spearhead

As with the Necrons, I hadn’t faced the new-rules Grey Knights but frankly the thought terrified me. I was playing against another friend who’d made the trip down from Edinburgh and while he’s an accomplished Warhammer Fantasy Battle general this was his first 40K game in a very long time. Just as in the previous game I was able to deploy and go first and again I left my Storm Troopers in reserve.

The brave men of Menasa face, for some reason, the Grey Knights,

Now, I knew that Grey Knights were expensive but the fact that his army consisted of only seventeen models surprised the hell out of me! My force was up against a Terminator Librarian with five Paladins, a five man Terminator squad, a six strong Purifier squad and a Venerable Dreadnought. Also, against the advice of everyone (including me) he elected to deploy all his units on the table, leaving nothing to Deep Strike. In his defence, I’d probably do the same were it my first game since at least he’d have the experience of using all the units, nevertheless this was his downfall.

Likewise the Grey Knights face off against loyal servants of the Imperium.

I knew that all I had to do was knock out seventeen models so on the first turn I didn’t advance as one would normally given the mission. Nevertheless it left me in a position to start pounding his army with unrelenting fire power and since he had to advance through this to my objective he was at a distinct disadvantage.

To cut a short story shorter I eliminated his Paladins and Librarian thanks to the combined fire of my Exterminator (love the multimeltas) and my Heavy Weapons Team by the end of the third turn. On the fourth turn my Vet squad finished off his normal Terminators without leaving their Chimera.

At this stage all he had left was his Dreadnought and the Purifiers, not nearly enough to stop my force from over-running his objective. After the fourth turn my honourable opponent conceded, it was a well fought game and the only thing which limited him was his lack of experience; I’ve known this gentleman for years and I’m certain that with a few more games under his belt he’ll be a force to be reckoned with.

In conclusion this was a Saturday well spent. I met some fantastic new people who I hope to game with soon and I played my first games against two new armies which taught me a lot. If only all weekends could be this productive!

Also, and this goes out to everyone, do not underestimate the wisdom of Doc Bungle; had I listened to him I may well have won my fight against the Necrons. The next round of toast is on me, dear Bear!