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Monday, April 22, 2013

The Good, The Bad, and then my Army - A 40k Battle Report

Yeah, that's right. JRock is playing some 40K and writing about it. After the Indy Open a friend of many years asked if I'd be interested in a game some time at his house. "Sure", I said. After the headache of the tournament, I was happy for some relaxed gaming. So John Lay and I scheduled the game which pitted his corrupted Sisters of Slaneesh VS. my Genestealer Cult!

We played 1500 points. His force was a straightforward Chaos list. I don't have all the particulars, but it was something of this sort:
Chaos Lord - Mark of Slaneesh, Lightning Claws I think?

Daemon Prince - Wings, Mark of Slaneesh, Power Armour, the torrent template attack?
2 - 10 man (woman) units of Noise Marines - Dual Blasmasters in each, Doom siren on the Champions
5 Terminators - Mark of Slaneesh,
2 Helldrakes - 1 with the Bale Flamer, the other with the Cannon

Like many Chaos lists, it was small. Not over the top, and he kept to a theme which was fun. To pull off my Genestealer Cult, I went with IG and SM allies.

HQ Primaris Psyker (Cult Magus)
TR Platoon (Brood Brothers):
     CS- Bolter, 3 Meltas, Plasma, Chimera
     Sqd1- Grenade Launcher, sgt- plasma pistol
     Sqd2 - Greanade Launcher, sgt - plasma pistol
     HWS - 3 Autocannons
TR Penal Legion (Hybrids)
FA Banewolf
HV Demolisher
HV Exterminator

Allies:  HQ Librarian (Genestealer Patriarch)
           TR Scouts (Arbites) shotguns - combi-plasma
           FA Vanguard Vets - (Purestrain Genestealers) - all power weapons, Rhino

Our mission was THE RELIC; deployment: DAWN OF WAR.

 My deployment: Far left Rhino with platoon command behind, banewolf, hybrids, chimera (empty), demolisher, genestealers with patriarch, IG unit with Magus in building, exterminator, IG squad, and autocannon squad perched on the graveyard.

 John's deployment: From the left we have the terminators leading the charge in the front. Noise marines with a chaos lord in the sand bags behind. In the building to the right is the other unit of noise marines carefully taking aim. In reserve are two helldrakes and the daemon prince.

NOTE: Both of our armies are HEAVILY converted and/or proxied. John is in the midst of transforming his army so he needed a few stand ins, as did I so forgive us for the handful of oddities. I will however be refer to the models in multiple ways to avoid confusion.

 Here my scouts infiltrate right up to the relic. They are in perfect cover from all of those nasty blasmasters, and the terminators haven't the slightest idea that they are there! What a way to start the game. It's great to go first until...

 SEIZED! AGH! Well, not the end of the world. I'm still in good cover, his army doesn't pose a huge threat at this point to my heavy hitters, and the objective is still closer to me than him.

John moves his Terminators up towards the objective, and with nothing really worth targeting, runs them even closer in the shooting phase. The Noise Marines to my left accompanied with his Chaos Lord decide they'll move through cover, leaving the two blastmasters in place to fire at full potential. Johns curse of rolling 2's begins here, as he rolls lots of them for moving through terrain with this unit. However, the blastmaster shots manage to kill off 2 of my autocannon teams in cover. The last autocannon team is unshaken and will not be pinned or broken. The Noise Marines to my right pop some blastmaster shots at my Banewolf, knocking off a hull point and shaking it for a turn.

Knowing the Termies are on the move for the Relic, I spring the scouts out to grab it. I know full and well that the combi-plasma would be a great shot to take, it's not going to level an entire unit. Now was not the time for bravery. So, I kept the majority of the unit below the hill, putting two members up touching the relic.
The Purestrains and the Patriarch (vanguard vets and librarian) seeing the relic in our grasp sprung out to put the pressure on John. The Hybrids (penal legion - rolled gunfighters) hopped up onto high ground to get a better firing position. Banewolf advances although it cannot shoot, Chimera pivots, Demolisher pivots, Exterminator moves up to target the Terminators as well. Unleashing every available shot the cult could bring into range without over exposing my troops, I manage to kill off 3 terminators. I do need to mention that John knowing I was going to bombard him with everything I had went to ground.  I also rolled my Rhino with my now embarked IG platoon command inside up to target John's Noise Maines to my right, killing one.

John's turn 2 begins with a shriek from the skies as not 1 or 2, but 3 beast swoop down upon the bug children. The pic above shows his wonderfully converted Daemon Princess (sorry the pic stinks) dropping in. Also arriving were the pair of Helldrakes. (John is using Valkyries to convert his up, although at this point they are far from finished. Please bear with us on this) One Helldrake (with the cannon) goes to my left near the Daemon Princess. The other zooms across the board  and eyeballs my Hybrids crawling all over the shipping containers.
What happens when you put a Bale flamer over a bunch of toughness 3 troops? They die. Hybrids down to  about 3, and they fled off the table. The other Helldrake shoots it's cannon at the side of my Banewolf to no success. The Daemon Princess torrents the Purestrains (Vanguard Vets) and puts a wound on the Patriarch (Librarian). From afar the Noise Marines manage to kill off 2 scouts and of course - pin them. 

Time for pure aggression in my turn 2. I needed a good turn and I got it. With 2 fliers and a Daemon Princess in my lines, this battle was getting ugly. Yes, I did have the relic. But I was pinned with Terminators ready to pounce on me next turn.  So, The Banewolf was ready to fire. Unfortunately, after moving full speed, it's template would only touch one marine. Killing it, and forcing John to either come out of cover and charge my tank or sit and get molested by it's chem cannon turn after turn. My next form of good luck happens when my Platoon Command hops out of their Rhino and targets the rear of the Helldrake. Armed with 3 meltaguns, a plasma gun, 
and a bolter, I figured - why not? Hit with 1 plasma shot, and 2 meltas. Wow. John saves against 1 melta, and I bring the bad boy down. On the other side of the board, my Magus (Primaris Psyker) attempts a Lightning Arc but John denies the witch! Boo.The IG squad runs up and dumps 18 lasgun shots, 1 krak grenade round, and a plasma pistol shot into the Daemon Princess...and kill it. Nothing like watching a 65 point unit decimate a 245 character. My Exterminator focused on the other Helldrake but did nothing but maybe knock off a hull point. All in all, after my turn 2, John's army was looking pretty bad, and my scouts were making a run for cover with the Relic.

With the Daemon Princess sent back to the Warp along with one pet Helldrake, the Chaos Lord has no choice but to take matters into her own hands, leading her hand picked Noise Marines out of cover towards the cult forces before her.
John's 3rd turn starts out by predictably moving his Noise Marines out of cover to charge my Banewolf - and making short work of it. His Helldrake performs a vector strike on some poor guardsmen before turning its cannon to the rhino to my right. Taking out it's final hull point it became a wreck. To my left his Chaos Lord and Noise Marine squad still have not figured out how to get out of the cover they are in due to the curse of the 2's. Finally, with a run move they clear the sand bags and make their way to the center hill.

My 3rd is when things get a little...interesting. In this turn my Patirarch (Librarian) manages to Perils himself with his last wound and remove himself from play. My last genestealer (V.Vet) fails a charge but is mowed down by overwatch fire. My Platoon Command knowing there are Noise Marines right around the corner decide to open fire with all of their low AP weaponry and WHIFF.
SO... I have 2 big units of Slaneesh Marines with a Chaos Lord advancing upon me. I have the relic.
I decide to pull my tanks up to shield the scouts if I can and pull up my other troops to provide a road block if possible. So I unload my Exterminator's plasma cannon sponsons, hull lascannon, and turret autocannons on the Chaos Lord's unit of Noise Marines by the hill. The Demolisher takes a chunk out of a few. Then I roll up with my IG squad - who did just slay a Daemon Princess, and assault. This was probably one of the dumbest things I could have done here. There's no way for me to win this - plus, he's gonna get to roll on the Chaos reward chart (and he damn near rolls the Daemon Prince upgrade -GULP). So, he wins combat by 5. My leadership is 7 because my Sergeant is dead - thanks challenge.
Snake eyes? Yeah I can roll that. So my balls out stupid, no brain charge worked out. Now they're stalled there through his turn. Excellent.

In John's 4th, the Helldrake continues his bloody path by vector striking my scouts with the relic - killing 2, the other sent fleeing. The cannon I believe focused on my Chimera taking off 1 hull point. His Chaos Lord makes short work of my remaining IG unit, and the proceed to advance on my position. Likewise the other Noise Marine unit does this...
Ouch. That's a Doom Siren killing my entire unit.

With my 4, I focussed on getting the Relic back. A nearby IG unit grabs it. The tanks push up and continue pounding what's left of John's Noise Marines.
As the bullets fly, more and more of the Noise Marines fall. Eventually the banner falls, leaving John's one unit without 'Feel No Pain'. All that will remain of the unit to the upper left will be the Chaos Lord and the Unit Champion. To the right (out of the pic) the Chimera pics away at the other unir of Noise Marines. 

Turn 5 comes, and John is determined not to let me get away with the Relic. The Helldrake pivots it's 90 degrees and turns it's turret cannon at my guardsmen. They take the hits, drop the relic, and run away. His Noise Marines frantically run towards my lines hoping for a turn 6. 

On 5, my Magus (Primaris Psyker) runs toward the objective to contest it. The Demolisher rolls up the hill and takes out a chunk of the Noise Marines running through the shipping containers to my right. The Exterminator lays into the Chaos Lord and her last remaining Champion killing just the champion. 

Then the battle of the Champions. The Magus seeing the Mighty Chaos Lord rushing toward him with unholy blades whirling. He raises both hands conjuring power from the Hive Mind itself and unleashes a bolt of raw energy, dropping the Lord to her knees. 
I rolled my 2d6 for Lightning Arc and got a 9. At S6 that's not too shabby. Wounded with 8. John failed enough saves. Left flank secure...sort of. 

We ended up going to turn 7 with the game being a draw for the Relic, and John winning on Kill Points. The last few turns were basically his last unit trying to blow my Magus off the Relic - which they did. And me trying to eliminate his Noise Marines - which I did. He then made a run for it with his Helldrake, and I fired everything I could on my turn 7 to get the Massacre. but nothing would bring it down. 

So, first of all, WHAT A GAME! A true nail biter that was anybodies game literally until the last turn. I got to play my army that has been packed away for years now. I got to play against a good friend and just hang out. 

Here's the thing. I know here at Indy40k, the guys (myself included) have been drifting away from Warhammer 40K since 6th edition. I have been guilty of the slamming of rules and competitive play and whatnot. I don't think the game shouldn't be played in tournaments or competitively. I just don't care for it. Now that a few games of 6th are under my belt, I truly believe the game has fixed many problems that existed in 5th edition, IF you are playing a friendly game. Maybe that's why John and I had such a great time Sunday morning with this game. Ultimately, it's a game - a hobby. Something that is done for leisure. So when I game, that's my goal. To relax, hang with cool people, and play a great game. With John Lay - Mission accomplished. Thanks buddy.

JRock with the coffee high and John Lay

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