Monday, September 19, 2016

Blowing Off the Dust

6th and 7th left editions left me less than impressed and I took a little break.  Not that it matters now, though.  There have been a few games over the time away but nothing I remember now.  Anyway, I was introduced to a couple of people in a neighboring town only 150 miles away :) 

This being my first game in well over a year, we decided to play a straight forward game.  Dawn of War with 5 objectives, no TacOps, First Blood, Line Breaker and Slay the Warlord.  I told David I would bring Sisters with Imperial Guard allies.  He was not sure what he wanted but it would be either Tyranids or Blood Angels.  We agreed on 1750 points (or so I thought - more on that in a moment).

I took Saint Celestine as my Warlord and brought a squad of 6 Seraphim to support her.  I had 2 Battle Sister Squads with flamer and heavy flamer in Immolators with twin-linked multi-meltas.  Fast Attack slots went to a pair of Dominion Squads of 6 with meltas all around and mounted in Repressors.  I had 2 Exorcists in the list for their S8 AP1 goodness.

The Imperial Guard allies came in the form of a 35 man platoon blob full of grenade launchers and autocannons, a company command squad with Korav's Aquila (for Preferred Enemy) and a Wyvern.  I planed to have the blob behind an Aegis Defense line with a quad-gun.

My opponent brought Blood Angels.  Somewhere we miscommunication and he brought 1500 points where I had 1750.  The quickest way to solve that little mix up was for me to pull my 2 Exorcists which brought me down to 1500 as well.  The Blood Angel force consisted of 2 Storm Ravens with Dreads (one of them Cassor) and Vanguard Vets, a small unit of scouts and a large Death Company squad accompanied by his Warlord Chaplin.

I did not take notes or pictures, which is a good excuse because I am short for time now and want to just hit the highlights.

The Wyvern took First Blood when it landed all 4 shells on the Scouts causing 12 wounds with no cover saves.  I think that made the Blood Angels mad because it did not survive the next turn when both Storm Ravens hit it hard.
Cassor is a beast.  He hit the Seraphim with Saint Celestine but thank to some under average rolls on his part and fantastic rolls for Seraphim saves, the Seraphim only lost a single sister giving them the opportunity to Hit & Run across the table where they could take on the Chaplin and his Death Company guard.  5 shredding templates caused some heavy damage followed by the Living Saint's charge all but spelled the end of the Death company.  It took another turn before the Seraphim could finish the job.  By that time Saint Celestine was alone and Cassor had caught up with her.

Both of my Dominion squads took shots at the Storm Ravens with nothing at all to show for their efforts.  Each were then attacked by the Veterans riding in the fliers who had to take melta overwatch and assault the tanks to force the Dominions out who then fired on their turn and charged the marines instead of having to take their charge.  They died as true martyrs yet I was happy with how the did overall even if I was not happy with myself for not getting them on to their best targets,

On the other side of the board, the unnamed Dreadnought hit the Guardsman who were hunkered behind their wall.  With no priest or commissar (I forgot how the guard need them) the entire platoon broke and ran off the board after suffering a few (6) casualties.

David's Storm Ravens were free to roam the skies for the most part.  One auto cannon cause a single hull point loss but that was all the damage they took.  The Storm Ravens easily took apart the Immolators that were the only other weapons that could threaten them after the Dreadnaught routed the guardsmen and captured their quad-gun.

It was a close game at a tie for points at the end of 5 turns.  On turn 6 the Storm Ravens were able to clear one of the Battle Sister squads off of their objective and Cassor stepped off of the one he was holding to again attack Saint Celestine who had already used her Miraculous Intervention.  It truly came down to the final roll.  If the entombed warrior could not finish the Living Saint, she would move to capture the object Cassor had stepped off of for the win.  However 4 S10 AP2 hits were more than she could save (she rolled 3 sixes and a 2 on her 4+ invulnerable save) and the Blood Angels ended the game with a win.

What Worked: 

Flamers, Saint Celestine and Seraphim.  They all worked together to cause the most casualties for me.  The Wyvern performed well for its debut outing as well. 

What Didn't:

Lack of air support or a reliable way to deal with Storm Ravens.  Sometimes it is possible to ignore a flyer and hammer the ground units but when they know you have nothing that can touch them except possibly snap firing melta that can ignore cover, there is little ability to force them to Jink.

My Guard platoon were also ineffective.  They did cause the only Hull Point damage the fliers took but my own poor list building gave them no ability to handle a charging dread nor any staying power to even tar-pit it.  

Monday, October 7, 2013

Fighting the Forces of Nurgle

After missing the whole 1000 point tier, my first league game at 1500 points was against Chaos Space Marines with Daemon allies.  My opponent is building a Nurgle army and he has been wanting to try out some of their units.

Chaos Nurgle Warband:

Chaos Lord with Powerfist, Sigil of Corruption, Mark of Nurgle and Palanquin.
2 X Plague Marines(10), meltaguns(2) in Rhino with a havoc launcher
Havocs(5) with Autocannon(4)
Greater Daemon of Nurgle with Mastery Level 3
Plague Drones(4)

Sisters of Battle:

Saint Celestine
2 X Battle Sister Squad(10) with melta guns(2) in a Rhino
Battle Sister Squad(10) with flamers(2) in a Rhino
Seraphim Squad(8) with dual Hand Flamers(2)
Dominion Squad(5) with melta guns(2) and a combi-melta in a Multi-Melta Immolator
2 X Exorcist tanks
Retributor Squad(7) with Heavy Bolters(4), Storm Bolter and a Simulacrum
Aegis Defense Line with Quad-gun

The Game:

Big Guns, Dawn of War, 5 objectives, no night fighting on the first turn.
Saint Celestine's warlord trait was -1 to opponent's reserve rolls. 
Sisters won first turn

Since I had the first turn I put the Dominions went into reserves looking to come in on an Outflank.  The rest of th forces lined up along the deployment zone's forward limit.
From left to right ... Melta troop behind a piece terrain, Exorcist, Aegis Defense Line and Retributors, flamer troop, Saint Celestine, Seraphim, melta troop #2, Exorcist.
Nurgle deployed Chaos Lord, Plague marines, Drones, havocs on high ground and plague marines.

Turn 1
Very little movement.  Saint Celestine and the Seraphim moved forward and ran to just past mid-field.  The units that had range -- both Exorcists and the Retributors -- all fired at the Havocs on the hill top. The Sisters manage to kill 2 from Havoc Squad after saves and Feel No Pain rolls.

Both plague marine squads moved 12" forward and moved flatout for 6" more. The Lord moved as far as he could up behind the left squad. Havocs shot at jump troops but they made all saves. In the center the Drones moved up to assault the Seraphim and took 2 wounds from overwatch.  They managed to and kill Saint Celestine while only taking one other wound in combat.  With a combat loss, the Seraphim tested for moral and failed which caused them to run.  Since Nurgle forces are Slow and Purposeful, the Drones could not try for a sweeping advance/

Turn 2
Seraphim rally and move back towards their deployment zone. Saint Celestine returned with 1 wound and went after the remaining Havocs.  The flamer troop's Rhino edged forward 6"and the right melta squad moved up the hill next to the Exorcist.  Retributors and the quad gun shot at the left rhino but only managed a single glance.  The Exorcists fired on the plague drones and managed to add a couple of wounds to the unit.  Right melta troop fired at the nearest rhino and destroyed its combi-bolter.  Saint Celestine killed 1 more havoc in shooting and then finished off the squad in close combat.  She then consolidated towards the left.

Thanks to the -1 modifier to reserve rolls,  no daemon reserves made their roll.  The Marines disembarked from both rhinos.  The Right side marines managed to immobilize the Exorcist with melta shots while the Left side marines destroyed the flamer rhino, causing it to explode.  The Lord moved up close enough to join the plague marines.  The Drones assaulted the Seraphim and lost another drone to overwatch but they did killed the Seraphim superior in a chalange.  The other Seraphim finished off the last non-champion drone.  At the end of combat, the surviving Seraphim tried to perform a Hit and Run bu failed.

Turn 3
Flamer sisters moved up towards the left marines and Saint Celestine moved down behind them.  Between the flamers (getting no less than 6 hits each), rapid firing bolters and the Retributor's heavy bolters, all of the plague marines were removed.  After that, the left Exorcist put 2 wounds on the Lord.  Note that the left melta troop is still hiding behind terrain.  The right Exorcist destroyed the rhino and the right melta troops add a few wounds to the marines.  In the Assault phase, Saint Celestine charged the chaos lord and removed him from the game. 

Plaguebarers made their reserves roll and came in  near the left Exorcist but the Greater Daemon mishapped and went back into reserves.  The plaguebarers lost 2 models to interceptor fire right away.  The remaining marines on the right went after the weakened seraphim squad, killing 2 with shooting but both dual flamers remained.  The marines took 2 more casualties from over watch and a 3rd during close combat but they wiped out the last of the seraphim -- leaving the marines standing in the open.

Turn 4
The Dominions came in from reserve and moved on to the table near the marines.  Saint Celestine, the flamer squad and the Retributors converged on the plaguebarers and easily wiped them out with shooting.  The right melta troop moved towards the marines, disembarked and shot away the last of the marines with the help of the melta Dominions.  The right Exorcist then wreaked the final Rhino.

No chaos model remained on the table.  We discussed letting the Greater come in but it would have to face a round of shooting from the Sister's almost full force before it could do much anyway.

What worked:

Flamers and massed fire.  Most of the casualties caused by the Seraphim were from Overwatch fire.  With Nurgle's ability to shrug off melta and even Exorcist missiles with Feel No Pain, it was the volume of fire which saved the day.

What didn't:

I hate to say it but even though the Retributors made every faith test thanks to the Simulacrum they did not get a single Rending hit in the game.  Maybe it was just bad rolls but since only 1 in 6 hits will rend, the odds are that this kind of thing will happen.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

First Tier complete

We finished the first tier of the escalation league and the Sisters of Battle had a rather mediocre showing through the month.  Highlights include being tabled in 4 turns by Tau, slugging it out for a draw against Thunderfure spam (at 500  points?!) and tabeling space marines in 4 turns.  It is hard to account for all comers in 500 point games and my list was built to sit back and fire.  While it worked against some, it is never a good idea to slug it out at range against Tau and the new Tau are even worse.

We did not have as many people attend the end of tier tourney due to tax free weekend and getting kids ready to go back to school.  I also think some people were just tired of playing 500 point games.  I did capture 2nd place in the event which boosted me to 2nd place for the league standings.  All I can say is thank god for hobby points, otherwise I would still be be in the middle of the pack. 

Looking forward, going in to the 1000 point tier I will be adding some much needed punch.  The Canoness can be upgraded in the next tier and so she will be; the Living Saint is the new Warlord of my army. Other improvements will include Rhinos for the troops, weapons for the Retributors plus the addition of a Seraphim Squad and an Exorcist.

If I remember the numbers correctly, the new list is something like this.

 - Saint Celestine
 - Battle Sister Squad(10) with flamers(2) in a Rhino with an extra stormbolter
 - Battle Sister Squad(10) with flamers(2) in a Rhino with an extra stormbolter
 - Seraphim(7) with twin hand flamers(2) and an Eviscerator
 - Exorcist
 - Retributor Squad(7) with Heavy Bolters(4) and an Imagifier
 - Aegis Defense Line with quad-gun

I don't have enough anti-tank.  Especially against AV 13 and 14 like I know will be coming.  Flamers are even better in 6th edition but can they carry me through the tier? I am commiting to playing the next 4 weeks with an anti-infantry build.  The third teir will be where I bulk up on melta but for now I will be trying to eliminate troops and avoid heavy vehicles where I can.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Escalation League: 500 point vs Necrons

We have a new game store in the area!  I always like new places and being about 15 miles closer to me than our regular LGS does not hurt at all.  We had seen the store before when it opened up a few months ago but did not know they carried wargames.  Someone my friend works with told him they were starting an Escalation league to help kick off their GW side so we had to show up.  And just in time, too. We made it there on the day they started the league.

The league is a mix of new players and vets.  They want to focus as much on the hobby as the game which is good thing in my opinion.  It is a typical escalation. 500 points, no named HQ on the first tier.  Same army for the whole time on each tier and units must carry over although load out can be adjusted when the tiers step up.  Now I am not a big fan of the blanket "no named characters" but this is a new player friendly league and besides, it is only for the first month.  If we want a special character later we can take a generic version of that character now.  On month 2 my Canoness can be upgraded to a Living Saint while someone else's Chaos Lord can become Heuron.

So my list for the first month:

Battle Sister Squad(10) with Flamers(2)
Battle Sister Squad(10) with Flamers(2)
Retributor Squad(5)
Aegis Defense Line with Quad-gun

No upgrades or options for the Canoness.  No special weapons for the Retributors.  Bolters and flamers for anti-infantry.  Quad-gun for possible flyers and light armor (which is all that it allowed in the 1st tier) and my only real heavy hitter.  The Retributors can make their weapons rending including the Quad-gun if they are opperating it.  The Canoness can either join the Retributors and fire the gun with her better Balistic Skill or join up with a Battle Sister Squad for close combat where her Act of Faith would be most useful.

My first game was last night -- no pictures so I will just toss in some stock Sisters pics -- against a Necron player.  500 points on a 4' X 4' table.  We played The Emperor's Will (2 objectives worth 3 points each) and Dawn of War setup.

Necrons (Note that no HQ is required for this tier so we ignore Slay the Warlord as well)
Necron Warriors(20) with Gause Rifles
Necron Warriors(10) with Gause Rifles
Necron Immortals(8?) with Tesla Carbines

The Sisters won the first roll and set up first.  I set the defense line out slightly to the left side of center with my objective right behind the quad-gun.  The Canoness was on the gun and attached to the Retributor squad which was on her left.  Battle Sister Squad Mari was behind the Aegis to the right of the quad-gun and Battle Sister Squad Ruth took cover behind a rock wall on the right side of the board.

The necrons main force took cover behind a hill in the center.  The smaller warrior squad was placed out of line of sight behind a rock outcrop along with their objective.  The Immortals stayed back but directly across from the quad-gun.  Between the rocjk wall on the table edge the smaller necron force was hiding and the larger hill where the main warrior force were in cover was a channel of open terrain across the board.  On the right just on the necron side of the table near the center was a large oasis which was difficult terrain but gave no cover.  Once the armies were on the field the Necrons failed to sieze the initiative so the Sisters took the first turn in the dark of night.

Turn 1

Squad Ruth was the only movement and they moved up slightly to hug their rocky cover.  Only half the Sororiats in Squad Ruth could fire at the large group of Necron warriors.  The quad-gun also fired and between them 3 necrons fell.  At the end of shooting, 2 warriors stood back up.

On the Necron's turn, the Immortals moved forward but not enough to be in firing range.  The large warrior force moved closer to the oasis and Squad Ruth firing about half thier weapons at range managing to kill 2 Battle Sisters.  The turn ended with minor results but the end of night fighting would change that.

Turn 2

Squad Ruth moved forward towards the Necron horde in order to get all thier bolters in range.  Squad Mari crossed over the Aegis and closed in as well moving diagonally acorss the table.  Firing from both Adepta squads put several necrons down and few were able to return. The large hoard was down to 17 warriors but still a powerful threat.  The Retributors made thier faith and fired on the Immortals, killing 3 but 2 returned.

The Necrons moved the Immortals close enough to fire all of their Tesla weapons while the warriors moved forward only slightly up to the edge of the oasis and still out of rapid fire range.  The warriors fired at Ruth's squad causing a few wounds that were easily saveds. The Immortals were in the gap aiming for the Retributors and the Canoness.  Firing their Tesla weapons caused 5 wounds, 2 of which arced for a total of 9 wounds.  Only 4 wounds were saved killing 4 of the Retributors and wounding the Canoness.  The Superior and the Canoness were all that remained. 

Turn 3

It was obvious those Immortals had to go.  Squad Mari was stuck as to which direction to go but decided to help out Ruth's squad with the (now smaller) mass of warriors.  Ruth's squad moved up just oputside of flamer range and only a few blters able to rapid fire yet managed to cause a large number of hits as expected.  Mari's squad fired at long range and added to the cusalties.  After armor saves and Rreanimation Protocol there were still 15 warriors on the right.  The Canoness and the Retributor Superior again made thier faith test fired at the Immortals.  With the quad-gun being twin linked all shot hit and the bolter hit was rending as well.  5 Immortals dropped and only one returned leaving 3 Immortals on the table.

The Necros were rocked by the loss of their Immortals.  The last three moved up and the objective squatting warriors moved out (leaving a trail so the objective was still in thier control) so that 5 of the warriors had lne of sight to Canoness.  The warriors may have had line of sight but not range.  The Immortals however had both.  Their weapons did not arc this time but one more wound went unsaved on the Canoness.  On the other side of the table the last of the large warrior squad moved up to the oasis towards squad Ruth (and out of range from Mari) and at the Sisters there. Even with rapid fire they caused only a few wounds, most of which were saved.  Four sisters remained in squad Ruth but they did remain. 

Turn 4

Squad Mari had a hard choice.  In the end it was determned that the best they could do was protect the Canoness.  They moved their full distance towards the defense line while the Canoness moved right close enough to join the unit.  The squad then ran instead of shooting to get in front of the Canoness (and the defense line as well due to positioning) who also moved back towards the gun.  The last of Squad Ruth moved closer and flamed the packed in warriors getting 6 hits with each flamer! After saves and reanimation the reminents Squad Ruth managed to put another 4 warriors down for good.

The last if the Immortals moved up and fired along with the smaller warrior but failed to cause any casualties.  The Warriors by the oasis moved into it diagonally towards Mari and the Canoness but fired at squad Ruth instead.  Even thugh they were rapid firing 11 gause rifles, only two Sisters failed their armor saves. 

Turn 5

Squad Mari consolidated at the Defense line leaving a few brave sisters in front to protect the Canoness from enemy fire.  The Battle Sisters (now with the Canoness) fired first and removed the last of the Immortals from the table; there would be no chance for them to return.  The flamer and bolter left in Ruth's squad followed the Warriors to the oasis and flamed them once more killing  3 necrons, all of which stood back up.   

The small warrior squad moved back into cover with their objective while the remaining 11 from the larger squad moved closer to the Defense line.  This time their gause weapons hit ture and easily killed tha last of Squad Ruth.

On a die roll of 2, the game ended.  Both holding our own objectives, both with a single kill point, but First Blood going to the Sisters.


What Worked:

Quad-gun!  Against armor save of 4 it really rocked.  But at 100 points (and 20% of my points allowed) it had better deliver.


What Didn't:

Sisters outside of of a Rhino.  It was a choice in what to take and with that Toughness of 3 it is just luck that my troops lasted as long as they did.  The Retributor sqaud was hammered in one turn by a squad that could not even fire all of their weapons.    Granted they would not have been in a Rhino anyway but on the other side of the board I could have used some mobility to get those flamers into position faster and from safety of an armored vehicle -- at least for a turn until it was destroyed.

Which brings me to my next point; poor mobility.  I was not as hampared by terain as bad as my opponent but I could not capatolize on his slowed movement either.

1000 Points vs Another Dark Angels Army

 (Photos to be added later once I get home)
I did not take notes and the game is rapidly fading from memory which is a big shame.  Spoiler allert: I lost bad.  I really wish I had taken notes so I could go over the game better and thus learn from my mistakes.  Well, that's one mistake right there I need to learn from.  I did take pics so that should help.

On to the game.

Sisters of Battle:
Saint Celestine
Battle Sister Squad(10) with meltagun(2) in a Rhino
Battle Sister Squad(10) with meltagun(2) in a Rhino
Seraphim(8) with Dual Hand Flamers(2)
Dominion Squad(5) with meltagun(2) in an Immolator with Twin-Linked Multi-Melta

Dark Angels (if I remember correctly)
Tac Squad(10) with Plasmagun and Plasma Cannon
Tac Squad(10) with Plasmagun(1) supported by a Razorback with Twin-Linked Heavy Bolters.
Dreadnought with Twin-Linked Lascannon, Power Fist and Heavy Flamer
Dreadnought with Twin-Linked Lascannon, Power Fist and Heavy Flamer
Devistator squad with missile launchers(4)

We played on the dessert board with a good amount of tall terrain.  I kind of messed up my lanes of fire when setting out terrain; the deployment was diagonal and I had set up as if it were the long table edges.Nothing too bad but it did make getting things in place on turn 1 was different.  We played Big Guns Never Tire from the basic rule book with 4 objectives.  I won the roll and deployed 1st.

The Dominions deployed in their Immolator front and center.  The Exorcist just behind them kept a large rock on thier side which limited the exposed sides to virtually front armor only.  The enemy would have to get into my deployment zone before they could get a side armor shot.  The troops deployed back and in cover; one out of line of sight from most of the board.  The Exorcist was on one objective and the hiden Sisters on the other.  Saint Celestine joined the Seraphim in reserves.

The Dark Angels deployed in the hills, splitting their force left and right while making a deadly cross fire zone in the center of the board. The tactical squads brok down into combat squads to better cover the area. Back and center the Whirlwind deployed fully hidden where it could fire its barrage unmolested.  Knowing the Dominios carried melta he chose to tuck his Dreadnought back behind solid cover.  Or so he thought.  The 12" redeployment let the Dominions' Immolator get a line on the right side Dreadnought.  The Dark Angels failed to sieze initiative; the Sisters kept the first turn.

Turn 1

The Dominions moved forward and disembarked in front of their target Dreadnought.  They fired twin-linked with their faith plus the Immolator's main guns all in double penitration range yet managed only a glance and a weapon distroyed against the Power Fist.  The Exorcist could not get line of sight to the Dreadnought and quit frankly I thought I would not need to back up the Dominions in taking out a Dread.  The Exorcist fired 4 missiles into the right side tacticals killing one marine.

The Dark Angels unloaded on the Dominions.  Krak missiles and plasma fire wreaked the Immolater and the Dreadnought killed 2 Dominion Sisters with shooting and a 3rd in the assault phase.  On the other side of the board one combat squad of Dark Angels in their Razorback moved to engage the forward most Battle Sister squad.  The squad disembarked and fired but only managed to cause two galncing hits after saves.

Turn 2

Saint Celestine and the Seraphim did not come in from reserves, which hurt.  The wounded rhino moved forward where the Battle Sisteres disembarked in front of the Razorbaks troops.  The second troop squad had nothing they could reasonablly get to so held their position on the objective.  The Exorcist fired a single missile at the Librarian but failed to wound.  The only good news came from the disembarked Battle Sisters who fired meltaguns rapid fired their bolters into the combat squad and managed to kill them all in one turn.  The two Dominions syated locked in combat with the Dreadnought as neither side managed to cause a wound.

On the Dark Angels turn, the disembarked Battle Sisters made a perfect target for the Whirlwind's large blast.  Heavy Bolter fire from the Razorback killed2 more and the remainder were removed as the second half of the combat squaded tacticals moved in closer.  The right side tactical squads moved forward around the Dreadnought combat closing in on the Exorcist.  However before they could reach, the missile launchers from the Devistator squad caused a penitrating hit which distroyed the Exorcists weapon.  In the assault phase, one more Dominion fell to the Dreadnought which left the remaining Dominion Superior locked in combat.

I have grown to use my Exorcists as a guide to how the battle is going.  If at the end of turn 3 I still have an Exorcist that can fire I almost always win.  Having no working Exorcists at the end of turn 2 was a bad, bad omen.

Turn 3

The reserves failed to come in yet again.  The wounded Rhino had nothing it could do but the second squad moved forward just enough to fire its meltaguuns from inside.  The Now useless Exorcist moved back trying to get out of line of sight from everything.  The Battle Sisters melta fire did nothing to the Razorback.  In the assault, the final Dominion fell. 

On the Dark Angels turn, the Whirlwind moved at top speed out from behind its cover so that it could use direct fire on its next turn.  The Devistators and the Razorback turned their attention to the remaining Rhino and managed to wreak it; the embarked troops bailed out of the back and covered the objective they had recently left.

Turn 4

... and the reserves automatically came in.  Finally.  I chose to deepstrike them in close to the squad covering their objective in hopes to either drive them off or (more likely) get a resurection denial from the Saint next turn.  Unfortunantly the Seraphim scattered bad and landed on top of the Dark Angels squad.  Mishap had the be placed by my opponent who rightly chose to place them at the far table corner.

On the Dark Angels turn ... well, what's to say?  Scattered half-hearted firing from the Dark Angels removed about half of the remaining Battle Sister squad.  I conceded the game at the end of 4.

What Worked:

(* crickets chirping *)
Rapid firing bolters was my only strong point for the game.

What Didn't:

My dice for one.  Now it is easy to blame a loss on bad luck but it sure gave me a steep hill to climb when scouting Dominions unload on a walker at close range and only manage to remove a single close combat weapon.  They consistantly take out land raiders this way. Each penitrating hit has a 50|50 chance of exploding the vehicle but not if you roll 1's and 2'.  That and my opponents Razorback was deadly with that heavy bolter.  He consistanly rolled 6's on penitration rolls and ate up Hull Points from two rhinos one after the other.  And he was shrewd; he keep the Razorback at a range where his heavy bolter could could fire but outside of what the melta sisters could reach on their next turn.

But luck can only go so far and I should have done better with what I had.

Reserves left me cold.  My big anti-infantry unit sat out the game waiting to come in. 

Deepstrike goes right there with it.  With no way to help bring them in faster and no way to reduce scatter it is always a risk to Deepstrike for the Sororitas.  I kept them back so they would not be shot up as they made their way across the board and I think this was a big mistake. For one thing they will take a turn of shooting when they come in from reserves anway.  Plus they will probably be in the open when they come in via deepstrike.  Also they will possibly be assaulted on the opponent's turn where they will not get the extra attack AND not have any faithpoints to use when they are assaulted.

So, I need to watch my lanes of fire when setting out terrain and remember where the deployment zones are.
No more deepstriking Sisters.  Have I said that before?  If I have not written it down before I know I have surely said it to myself.  Stop it.  Serapim do better crossing the board in the open (which they should be finding cover of slipping along the flanks) than they do sitting in reserves and mishapping on the way in.

And in the end, I did have a fun game and my opponent was great guy to play against.  Besides, sometimes you can learn a lot more mistakes than you can from successes.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Team battles

It has been a long long time since I played a game with the Adepta Sororitas. Partly due to having the army out of commission during their repainting. Partly due to a new Chaos Space Marine codex which is my other favorite army. But when we had a chance to go to an impromptu tourney in the thriving metropolis of Booker, TX, how could we say no?

Seriously, there is a wonderful coffee shop/pizzeria/game store in the very rural town of Booker called "Solid Ground." I met a great group of people and stayed wired on Cafe Americana for the weekend and had a ball. But that's beside the point.

For this 2000 point team tournament, I dusted off the Sisters and joined my friend's Dark Angels for the games. It was an unusual format where the team shares one FOC, each requiring one HQ and needing to be able to play together from the rulebook ally matrix. Forgeworld was also allowed so I got a chance to play with a pair of Repressors. My friend's Dark Angels were also using a codex just one week old. We were in this for the fun of it and a chance to meet a few new people but I still wanted to have at least a viable army all together.

The Adepta forces consisted of:
Uriah Jacobus,
Battle Conclave (3 Crusaders, 6 Death Cult Assassins)
Battle Sister Squad with 2 meltaguns in a Repressor
Battle Sister Squad with flamer and meltagun in a Repressor
Retrubutor Squad with 4 Heavy Bolters, storm bolter and another Sister to carry the Simlacrum.
2 Exorcists

Dark Angels brought:
5 Deathwing Terminators
5 Deathwing Terminators

3 Hyperion missile launchers
Ravenwing support squad of 3 bikes.
Aegis Defense line with quadgun.

The first game was against Grey Knights and Grey Knights.
Coteaz, 2 dreadnoughts and Purifier Spam for one list, 10 paladins and a Stormraven for the other.

The basic set up was for Jacobus to start in contact with the quadgun and move out later, letting the Retributors take over the gun emplacement. The Grey Knights won first turn and the Dark Angels chose to Death Wing assault both terminator squads on turn 2. This left the Battle Sisters on the table to face 2 turns of shooting from 2000 points of Grey Knights. The Paladins arrived by Deepstrike on turn 2 at the same time as the Stormraven came in from reserves. Interceptor fire forced the Stormraven to jinx but otherwise did no damage. One Repressor was destroyed and 2 crusaders died to bad rolling. The Sisters of Battle managed to cause a few casualties but where in a desperate struggle to maintain until the Dark Angels arrived.

Speaking of bad rolling, the two exorcists never rolled above a 1 for the entire game. They both rolled a 1 every time. This is the worst I have ever had them perform. Still, with both rolling single missiles they managed to kill a paladin each on their second turn. This left 8 paladins and their chapter master on the Sisters flank for Uriah and the conclave to assault. This assault lasted from the bottom of 2 until the top of turn 5 when Uriah Jacobus and 4 Assassins were left standing over the bodies of the paladins. I would rather have spent more time dropping Exorcist missiles and meltaguns into the paladins but considering where they were (and how my Exorcists were rolling) I did not have much choice.

Once the Dark Angels arrived it was a better fight. Belial's squad came in near Coteaz (12.1") and killing one purifier squad, one dreadnought and most of a second purifier squad before finally falling on the last dread who seemed able shake off all hits (poor penetration rolls and quite frankly, not enough hits to really matter) The second terminator squad came in on the other side of the board and caught the rest of the purifiers between the terminators and an advancing Battle Sister squad in their repressor. Bulk bolter fire, Heavy Flamer from the tank and terminator assault quickly cleared that half of the board. The last 3 purifiers managed to wreak the last Repressor on the top of turn 5 leaving the Battle Sisters on foot trying to run (a big 2") to the nearest objective but leaving them short.

Coeteaz and one purifier were all that were left of the Grey Knights at the end of turn 5 where they sat on their objective near their board edge. Jacobus, 5 DCA, 8 Sisters of Battle from the first squad, and an Exorcist ready to move on them in turn 6. (Did I mention there was a player that posted a bounty of $25 for the first team to table their opponent?) We held one objective each (thanks to the second Battle Sister squad being 4" away from their goal) and a roll of 2 ended the game. We had miss heard the rules of the scenario ... there were 5 objectives total; three along the center line and one in each deployment zone. The center objectives were worth 3 points and the home objectives were worth 5. So the game ended with a 3 to 5 loss.

For what it's worth, after seeing how the Battle Conclave faired in the next two games, my opponent who took the paladins kept complimenting his troops for tying up the Conclave for the majority of the game. 750 points to hold up 235 for 5 combat rounds ... that's ... ok I guess.

We both agreed that it would have been better if the Death Wing had come in on turn one, but this was also partly because of confusion with my friend and the new codex. Not all the Death Wing have to come in together; some can arrive on turn 1 while others can be set to come in on turn 2. And to add to that, if you want to delay a turn to react to your opponent, you do not need to wait until game turn 2 if you are not going first.

For the second game, we were pitted against Necrons and Grey Knights with a combined 3 flyers (2 scythes and a raven). Objectives were set up the same way, only this time the center objectives were worth 3 points while the home objectives were worth 2.. It was a horrible start with our defenses unable to cause any damage to the necron flyers and the necrons never failing to get their Tesla arc.

At the top of turn 3, 1 last Retributor got a rending Heavy Bolter shot to take down the Grey Knight Storm Raven while the missile launcher finally managed to take out one scyth while an assassin on the quad gun managed to wreak the other. Belial and his squad went against 3 wraiths and the necron destroyer lord in a very brutal struggle. While Belial and one terminator emerged from that fight, they could not match the 10 Grey Knight Terminators that followed. Dark Angels and Sisters concentrated to clear away the Immortals and warriors but with heavy losses from the first of the game, only one scoring unit remained. At the end of 7 turns, one objective was held by each army. The way the Grey Knights were positioned, all we needed were 3 casualties to shoot the terminators off of their point. The night was against us and in the end, only 2 failed their cover saves. The game ended with another loss; 3 to 2. Still, it was a hard fought game and a lot of fun to play.

The last game of the weekend was a sort of narrative. 3 Dark Angel armies and the Sisters of Battle (4000 points total) slugged it out against Tyranids, Tau, and 2 Grey Knight armies in a total annihilation scenario. No game limit but starting with a turn of night fighting.

The Tyranid player had misread the rules for strong arm and was adding 3 to strength and toughness every time. Still, Belial the first managed to kill off the retinue of bugs and severely wound the Swarmlord (4 wounds on it) allowing it to be finished off with meltaguns and plasma in the next turn.

On my end, The Battle Conclave followed behind a Repressor right on the table edge headed for the Tau bunkered up in the back corner. The Repressor was shot up before it could get half way and the Sister unit it held was shot away so that the final 3 battle sisters failed moral, broke and ran. This let the Battle Conclave reach assault range with most of the unit intact. From there it was a romp and stomp across the back field, killing the Tau -- crisis suits and all -- along the way. The momentum ended when they came up to support 2 Death Wing knights (the last of their squad) against Coteaz, a strike squad, a tyragon and a few termagants. The Conclave rolled 4 total, being 1" short of making it in combat and stood in the open while the last two knights fell. The Conclave then took the fire from the enemy forces wiping them out except for Jacobus. What saved him in the end was a second Battle Sister squad showing up with their Repressor. The Sisters bailed out to use both meltaguns and rapid fire with everything else. Dark Angel tactical marines with their banner also came up behind the bugs. The first round of shooting did some damage but the bugs are hard to finish off. They returned fire ding several casualties against the Battle Sister squad. On their next turn, the Sisters embarked with Jacobus in tow while the Dark Anges (who had not moved) unleashed their salvo against the remaining tyranids.

On the other side of the table, Death Wing went against Grey Knights and the terminators pounded each other ruthlessly ly. In the end, 2 Dreadnoughts in the cover of tall ruins survived and made a killing field of the area around their positions. The Sisters sent their Exorcists against the Dreadnoughts, killing one but losing an Exorcist in the return fire. The last Exorcist and Dreadnought traded shots and saves until the last Exorcist was overrun by Grey Knight terminators. The Grey Knights in turn fell to Retributors and Dark Angels but the final Dreadnought was proving to be difficult to take down. As the game wound down, the Dreadnought stood the last of his side while 3 squads of Dark Angels, the Battle Sister squad and the last 3 Retributors raced across the table towards him. The Repressor showed to be the fastest way across and deposited the melta bearing Battle Sisters just 5" away from the Dreadnought who then exploded under the devastating firepower.

The final narrative ended with 3/4 of the teams wiped from the table. The Adepta Sororiats were one of the two survivors.


What Worked:

Heavy Bolter Retributors.  I would have loved to take another model or two to help with the wounds, especially from the Necron Tesla weapons but at 1000 points, you take what you can.

Most everything else was hit and miss.  The Battle Conclave is still a strong Close Combat unit in 6th Edition but they can't handel being shot at in the open.

What Didn't:

Exorcists.  I have been doing so well with a pair of Exorcists for so long I just assumed they would never fail me.  But they did.  Getting 7 ones in a row for shots fired is on the far end of the curve but obviously, it still happens.



Friday, July 13, 2012

4 Player Mini-Apocalypse

We started off intending to play a quick game of partners but with everyone wanting to take a "full" army to show some of their new toys, we played with 1850 points per person.  That gave us 3700 points per side.  The sisters of Battle joined Imperial Fists against Orks and more Orks.  3700 points if Orks meant a target rich environment.  This was the first 6th Edition game for one of the Ork Players as well as my Imperial Fist partner.

It took us 4 hours to play 2 turns but we did have a lot of fun getting those two turns in.  Even with just two turns, there was way too much for me to keep notes on.

The Imperial forces won first turn in what was to be The Relic mission.  The Sisters of Battle deployed mostly to the left and the Imperial Fists took the right.  Across from us was a literal horde of Orkz of every type.  Battlewagons, truks, mega-dreds, killa kans, def kopters, lootas ... they brought it all.

One Dominion squad went to Outflank, the other redeployed 12" closer to the Ork walkers.  Imperial Fists scouts too cover behind the central hill near the Relic.  The plan was for them to snatch the Relic quickly and then fall back behind the cover of Lysander's terminator squad and Jacobus' Battle Conclave.

It was a good plan and went along smoothly for ... oh .. about half a turn.   The Ork battlewagon in the center did not move forward as I expected. Instead killa kans and def-dreads filled the center.  Jacobus stayed in cover with his rhino waiting for a target he could damage.  Lysander took the lead met the kan wall.

On the left flank, the dominion squad managed to immobilize the mega-dread before being gunned down by the lootas.  The Immolator survived both rounds of shooting with only a single hull point taken.

Seraphim moved up along the edge with the intention of burning the loota boyz but were met by ork jump troops in the woods.  It was a tough few rounds of hand to hand combat, but the orks were just too strong and wore away at the Seraphim.

 On the far right flank, def copters moved along the edge and engaged the Marine's Predator.  The orks rolled poorly and took more damage than they caused.  After two turns the kopters and the predator were still trading punches.

The Outflanking Dominions came on the right side at the start of turn 2.  Looking to score a solid kill they passed by the kopters and fired on the ork battlewagon.  It exploded and left a warboss with his kustom force field in the open.  One shot from the Immolator's multi-melta and the warboss was gone!

Of course the orks would not let that pass without retaliation.  On the Orks turn the Dominions were assaulted.  They snap fired their weapons, scoring a hit with both meltaguns!  Box cars, baby!  Rolling to wound was a different matter.  Snake eyes!  Neither melta hit managed to wound.  The Dominios fell to the greenskins while the players howled with laughter.

 It looked like the Imperial forces had the upper hand even with Jacobus being out of position and in no place to respond or join the fight for at least two more turns.  The Retributors in the ruins where hot, raining bolter fire on the lootas across the board and getting rending hits on the kans threatening the left side.  That was until the bommas came flying on the table.  Half of the Retributors were lost and the scouts in control of the Relic were wiped out in one turn of shooting.

 At the end of 2, we had to call it done.  Real life called and friends had to return home.  It was fun, if slow going while we discussed new and old rules alike.  I have more pictures than commentary this time so instead of rambling on

What Worked:

Outflanking Dominions
Rending Heavy Bolters

What Didn't:

Waiting in the woods with the Battle Conclave
Seraphim in hand to hand with assault troops.  They held out longer than I thought they would but it was a very lopsided fight.