How to find your way through the wreckage

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GuessRange.

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Battle Report: Warhammer 40K - Imperial Fists vs Chaos Space Marines - 1750 pts

1750 Point Warhammer 40K Battle Report


Imperial Fists (The Good Guys - *it's true this time!*)


vs


Chaos Space Marines (The Bad Guys - *they really are!*)


So we are back with another epic battle between Chazz and I. Inspired by the release of the new Codex: Chaos Space Marines he has drawn forth his legions from the warp and it is my duty to destroy him. This is the first time either of us has seen the new CSM army in action, so there may be a few surprises for us both, probably nasty and warp tainted as well..

Forces on parade are:

The Good Guys (Garrison drawn from Imperial Fists 4th Company)
Captain (Artificer Armour, Relic Blade, Jump Pack)
10 x Tactical Marines (Flamer, Plasma Cannon)
10 x Tactical Marines (Flamer, Plasma Cannon)
10 x Tactical Marines (Flamer, Plasma Cannon)
10 x Assault Marines (Sgt w/Lightning Claws)
2 x Landspeeders (Heavy Bolter and Typhoon Missile Launcher)
Dreadnought (Plasma Cannon, DCCW w/Heavy Flamer)
Dreadnought (Plasma Cannon, DCCW w/Heavy Flamer)
Predator (Lascannon sponsons, Twin-linked Lascannon turret)
Predator (Lascannon sponsons, Twin-linked Lascannon turret)
Thunderfire Cannon (After playing a game at a local store against 2 of these I really wanted to give them a run, will see how it goes!)

The Bad Guys (The Newly Minted Chaos and their Necron lackeys) (list not 100% accurate)
Slaanesh Sorcerer (Lev 2, rolled up Sympathy of Pain and Puppet Master), Bike, Lightning Claw
6 x Chaos Bikers (Aspiring Champ w/ Lightning Claw, 2 x Plasma Guns)
10 x Chaos Marines (Aspiring Champ w/Lightning Claw, 2 x Plasma Guns)
10 x Chaos Marines (Aspiring Champ w/Lightning Claw, 2 x Melta Guns)
5 x Havocs (Aspiring Champ, 4 x Autocannons)

Necron Lord (Mindshackle Scarabs, Warscythe)
2 x Harbinger of Despair (Both with Abyssal Staff, one in each squad)
8 x Necron Immortals (Tesla Carbines)
7 x Necron Immortals (Gauss Blasters)
6 x Canoptek Wraiths



Everyone lined up and ready to go.

Pre-Game

As per our standard last-minute game organisation we rolled up the battle using the standard rules. The Emperor's Will using a Hammer and Anvil Deployment. Chazz won the dice for table edge, however this was rather redundant as we had accidentally set up a very symmetrical table. Both objectives were placed obligatorily on the hill in our deployment zone and we got onto putting troops on the table. Chazz won the dice for first turn and deployed first. Keeping half his forces in reserve he lined himself on up the starting mark and got ready to charge. A little more cautious I stayed back with my long-range guns, and kept everything else sitting at about 30-36" from him, just trying to make his first turn as difficult as possible to get lots of guns in range. I kept my Assault Marines in reserve to Deepstrike in and hopefully sweep him off his objective, and simply survive for five turns to contest it. With this scenario the battle is forced to concentrate at both ends of the table which makes for an interesting (bloody) middle ground.

So with our forces deployed this is what it looked like:

Deployment

Description for Chaos - Chaos Sorcerer and Bikers at the top. Havocs positioned on the hill at the rear. CSM Squads lined up on northern and southern flanks. Wraiths positioned just off centre. All other units in reserve. (2x Night Scythes, 1x Necron Lord, 2x Immortal Squads w/Cryptek, 1x Chaos Cultist Squad)

Description for the Imperial Fists - Predators at northern and southern extremes. Thunderfire in back right (southern flank) corner. Landspeeders central at back. Dreadnoughts on northern and southern flanks with Combat Squad positioned nearby. Three Combat Squads with Plasma Cannons located on hill. Single Combat Squad positioned at bottom of hill. Captain and Assault Marines in Deepstrike Reserve.

Chaos objective located under Havocs, Imperial Fists objective located under Plasma Cannon Combat Squads.

I stole the initiative (much cheering!) and we got started.



TURN 1 - No Night Fighting (A nice change)



Imperial Fists Turn 1
IF - Turn 1
Movement:  The Imperial Fists moved up both flanking Combat Squads to start creating a buffer between hostiles and the objective. The Dreadnoughts stomped up behind, bringing their Plasma Cannons into range. The Landspeeders drifted a fraction but were still awaiting orders.

Shooting: Stealing the opportunity to take the first shots, Lascannon and Plasma Cannon bolts flew out from the Imperial Fist lines. Reasonable casualties were inflicted, however some of the more powerful weapons did not seem to be functioning properly. Two of the Chaos Bikers were vaporised by plasma. The of the CSM squads suffered seven casualties as Thunderfire Cannon and Plasma Cannon shots landed amongst them. Only two CSM's were killed in the other squad. Despite a barrage of Lascannon and Plasma Cannon shots, only a single wraith was felled. Not an insignificant opening salvo, however Imperial Fist Tacticians were not impressed.


Chaos Space Marines Turn 1
CSM - Turn 1
Movement: The Wraiths drifted swiftly forward next to the ruins. Both CSM squads moved forward, trying to close the range for their weapons. The Sorcerer and his Bikers dashed down the flank eager to close with the enemy.

Shooting: Finding a target in range the Havocs unload on one of the Dreadnoughts, glancing it and breaking its Power Fist. A lucky Plasma Gun shot from the speeding Bikers felled a Marine. The Wraiths continued their drift forward and both of the CSM squads used the lull in the fire-fight to keep dashing forward.



TURN 2 



Imperial Fists Turn 2
IF - Turn 2
Movement: The Imperial Fists reserve did not arrive this turn, no doubt planning the exact moment to arrive and change the course of the battle. A coordinated strike was dedicated against the Wraiths and orders passed to close and kill the creatures before they could reach the objective position. The remaining Combat Squad on the northern flank moved forward, aiming to engage the fast Bikers before they could break into the defensive lines. With approaching targets the Landspeeders strafed across to bring their guns to bear on the approaching Bikers.

Shooting: With everything now in range the Imperial Fists blazed away. The Tacticians looked on in startled surprise and nearly none of the shooting managed to inflict casualties. Fortunately all of the Chaos Bikers were gunned down with a strike being caused on the Chaos Sorcerer. Afraid that similar shooting would continue, the Tacticians ordered the strike to commence.

Assault: Two Combat Squads and a Dreadnought crashed into the Wraiths, ready to crush and demolish the creatures. The Chaos Gods must have intervened in the fates of the Loyalist Marines, the Dreadnought plasma generator was pierced and exploded across the entire combat. The two sergeants each to squash the Wraiths were unable to cause a single casualty. With their supporting Dreadnought destroyed the southern Combat Squad broke from combat after seeing an approaching CSM Squad, moving rearwards they sought a more advantageous fighting position. The Combat Squad remaining in contact with the Wraiths gritted their teeth and hoped to hold the line and buy time for their battle-brothers. The Imperial Fists Tacticians in space looked in confusion, how could this be happening!?


Chaos Space Marines Turn 2
CSM - Turn 2
Movement: The Necron Lord with his Immortals and Night Scythe arrived this turn, as did the Chaos Cultists, fresh from their recent offerings. The Sorcerer annoyed at his Bikers for dying around him moved up to charge the uppity marines in front of him. The southern CSM squad moved up to bring more fire-power to bear on the corpse-worshippers falling back. The battered northern CSM Squad continued its advance, using the hill to avoid attracting too much attention.

Shooting: The Havocs re-target the damaged Dreadnought and cripple the rest of its functioning systems. The Sorcerer cast Symphony of Pain on the squad in front of him and prepared to charge. The Night Scythe targeted the southern predator, however only causes two glancing hits, leaving it tantalisingly vulnerable.

Assault: With a cry to the Gods, the Sorcerer charged in. Calling out the Sergeant he immediately decapitated him in a challenge. The Imperial Fists managed to break contact from the Sorcerer, calling for fire to cover their withdrawal. The Wraiths butchered the last of the Combat Squad, pausing only briefly to collect grisly trophies before resuming their drift towards the Imperial Fists defensive position.



TURN 3



Imperial Fists Turn 3
IF - Turn 3
Movement: The Captain and his Assault Marines arrive from deep strike landing right behind the Chaos objective, surprised by Chaos Cultists that did not appear on the Auspex Scanners during the drop. Both Combat Squads regroup and turn back into the fray. The Landspeeders strafe left to open up lines of fire onto the approaching Wraiths.

Shooting: Lining up each of its' Lascannons, the northern Predator erases the Sorcerer from the battlefield. The Techmarine working the Thunderfire Cannon manages to hit and wound the Wraiths twelve times, however the creatures manage to only lose two casualties. Warning icons flashed on the Combat Squads guarding the objective, who all turned to fire upon the Wraiths. In a moment there was only a single Wraith alive, sparking and stumbling along. The Assault Marines, in accordance with their pre-drop orders target the Havocs on the Objective, and even the Captains orders for Target Priority were unable to cause a single casualty.

Assault: Keen to regain their lost honour the southern Combat Squad charges the remaining Wraith and swiftly puts it down.


Chaos Space Marines Turn 3
CSM - Turn 3
Movement: With reports of casualties filtering back, the Necrons order their second Night Scythe to arrive to relieve some of the battle pressure. The clustered Assault Marines make for a perfect target, and the Immortals and their Cryptek with Abyssal Staff line up to destroy the irrelevant Marines. The Necron Lord sighting the Chaos Sorcerer being destroyed injected himself and his Immortals into the battle, taking the fight to the Imperial Fists defensive position. The southern CSM Squad moved up again to continue their fire upon the dislocated loyalist defensive position. The northern CSM Squad moved into hilly ground to gain sight on the marines responsible for killing the Sorcerer.

Shooting: With a scream of energy the Abyssal Staff unleashed, striking down six of the Assault Marines. The Immortals, Chaos Cultists, and Havocs, finish the work killing the rest of the Assault Marines and wounding the now lone Captain. The Necron Lord orders his Cryptek to use its Abyssal Staff and once again pain envelopes the Imperial Fist Defensive position. However due to the hilly ground, many of the marines escape destruction. The eastern Night Scythe guns down one of the Landspeeders, leaving a blasted wreck in its place.

Assault: The southern CSM squad, finally in range sprints into combat with its Combat Squad enemies. The Aspiring Champ challenges the Sergeant and swiftly cuts him down. Another marine falls to the CSM blades, and the remaining marine attempts to withdraw again, however the CSMs refuse to let their sport escape. The Captain alone now is a ripe target for the enraged Chaos Cultists. The Captain cuts down one of the Cultists, who are subsequently shocked to find their Champion not willing to fight. They attempt to flee but the Captain continues to strike out and kills them all a swift bloodbath.



TURN 4 



Imperial Fists Turn 4
IF - Turn 4
Movement: With forces starting to get thin on the ground, Imperial Fist Tacticians attempt to calculate the greatest probabilities for victorious solutions. Deciding upon massed fire-power the orders are passed. The Captain takes the lead and steps forward toward the Havocs. The Landspeeders continue their strafe to line up fresh targets.

Shooting: Every gun remaining in the Imperial Fist line is levelled at the Necrons. A blaze of plasma and las pour over the Necrons. After sighting optics return to optimal capacity only the Necron Lord is left, limping forward towards the objective. One of the Plasma Cannons failed to receive the order and fired upon the northern CSM Squad, reducing two of its members to bubbling messes.

Assault: The Captain charges into the Havocs, calling out the Aspiring Champ and cleaving him in two before he can shout an insult. The Havoc refuse to be intimidated and close the gap to try and strike down the rampaging Captain.


Chaos Space Marines Turn 4
CSM - Turn 4
Movement: The Necron Lord spots the nearby CSM Squad and signals them to conduct an assault with him upon the Imperial Fist objective position. The CSMs gladly agree and stride forward to charge their foes. The Necron Lord orders a rapid repositioning and the Immortals back in their deployment zone re-materialise aboard the Night Scythe which carries them swiftly down the battlefield.

Shooting: Pre-assault fire kills two of the marines guarding the objective, nicely softening them up for imminent destruction.

Assault: The Necron Lord hurls himself up the hill and immediately begins laying about, killing all the enemy marines nearby. The CSMs impressed and not wanting to seem lacking equally throw themselves into an energetic massacre of the small Combat Squad that had been guarding the objective.


TURN 5 - No Night Fighting



Imperial Fists Turn 5
IF - Turn 5
Movement: The last remaining Combat Squad redeploys from the northern edge of the hill, moving back around and in range of the objective. The sole survivor of the northern Combat Squad continues his run towards the hill, eager to assist.

Shooting: Risking friendly casualties the Thunderfire Cannon causes fifteen hits and manages to kill four of the CSMs by itself. A combination of twin Predators and a supporting Landspeeder see the Necron Lord and remaining CSMs on the hill pulped and withered into scrap metal and flesh.

Assault: The Captain, starting to warm up to his day of blade-work cuts through two more Havocs, easily parrying their desultory attempts to attack. However despite the losses the Havocs stand their ground, ready to die to the last (rolled Snake-Eyes for break-test).


Chaos Space Marines Turn 5
CSM - Turn 5
Movement: The Necron Scythe hurries on its way, racing to reach the objective with its cargo before the battle concludes.

Shooting: Seeing the Combat Squad slink behind the hill, the Night Scythe opens fire, killing two of their number. The remaining marine falls back and commences his evacuation to the emergency landing zone.

Assault: The Captain cuts the last of the Havoc down, satisfied with his blade practice for the evening.

TURN 6 (The Game goes on)



Imperial Fists Turn 6
IF - Turn 6
Movement: The Captain launches himself from the hill toward the east, frustrated by the broken messages being sent through and the worrying lack of friendly beacons remaining. The remaining marine dashes around the hill to hide from a sole CSM that is stalking him.

Shooting: Both Predators, and the Landspeeder attempt to bring down the approaching Night Scythe, desperate to slow the swiftly approaching Necron transport. After a dangerous dive to avoid the incoming fire the Night Scythe manages to jink away from two potentially destructive shots, however a lucky Lascannon strike is still unlucky enough to only glance the deadly machine.


Chaos Space Marines Turn 6
CSM - Turn 6
Movement: The Night Scythe, bounced by a glancing Lascannon shot delivers its cargo of Immortals nearly directly onto the target objective. The Scythe sweep north toward the Predator, aiming to destroy the annoying machine.

Shooting: With efficient protocols, the Necrons gun down the sole remaining marine trying to protect the objective. With the objective now secure the Necrons commence scanning for new orders. The Night Scythe tries to destroy the Predator however is unable to penetrate the thick front armour.


TURN 7 (The Game goes on, one last turn!)


Imperial Fists Turn 7
IF - Turn 7
Movement:  The Captain continues his bounding flight to the east, knowing he will be too late to save the objective, however determined not to give up.

Shooting: A last ditch effort to coax lethal fire-power from tired guns is ordered. Once again the Lascannons, Thunderfire Cannon, and remaining Landspeeder sweep the hill with fire. Only two Necron Immortals remain. A tense moment occurs as the guns fall silent while the Necrons slowly conduct internal diagnostics and search for orders. Unable to locate over-riding orders the Necron Immortals remain in position to secure the objective for their Lord. The Imperial Fist Tacticians observing from their command deck concede the objective, ordering a blanket withdrawal of all remaining troops in order to commence planning for the next assault into contested territory.


Chaos Space Marines Turn 7
CSM - Turn 7
Movement: The lone CSM left dashes forward to retrieve the objective before the Necron Immortals can damage the archeotech. Satisfied with the destruction of their foes, and the unlikely success of the new arrangement with the metallic Necrons, the lone CSM assumes command and orders all forces to return and commence sacrifices in thanks to the Dark Gods.


Post-Battle Wrap-Up - Chaos Win 4-2


Now that was a game. Hectic! There were massive swings in luck. I rolled a monstrous amounts of 1's with weapons that would have obliterated so many foes. And yet....at the very very end of a very bloody battle, it came down to a single Leadership test to determine who won the game! As Chazz joked shortly after, we should have just rocked up, rolled the leadership test, and called the game then and there! lol

So first roll-out against the new CSMs. There are a few nice little tweaks which change some of the gameplay, however only taking half an army there really wasn't space to see all the new toys. The lack of vehicles surprised me, however it freed up all my Lascannons and Typhoon Missiles to shoot at tough things like the Bikers, cutting them down in short work. Once again Wraiths are horrible, horrible, things to have to deal with. After that disastrous combat, I was almost certain than game was over right then and there. However a lucky shooting phase and we were back in the game.

In the after-battle discussion one of the things that came up was that sometimes the timing of units arriving can make or break their effectiveness. My Assault Marines and Captain almost had a zero impact on the game, nearly being wiped out in a single Necron turn. I was very lucky that the Captain survived and was then protected in combat for the next couple of turns. It forced Chazz to launch his race down the table to secure my objective. A great tactic by him which was timed perfectly, a single turn delay would have given me the victory with First Blood and Warlord.

An awesome game, thanks to Chazz for trialling some of the new Chaos units. We will probably be conducting a similar game in the near future, this time with more of a Chaos slant to the force I think. There is always a lot of things to learn over a game, be it in terms of how the game works, how an army can find synergies its units and weapons, or how an opponent deals with tactical situations.

There is plenty which I have not covered, however if I think it really needs mentioning, I will update the post as required.

Hope you all enjoyed it and thanks for reading!

GuessRange.

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