After the kicking I took in the last two games, I found myself at the lower end of the tournament listings, playing my next game on table 12 against Jason's Daemons and Chaos Space Marine army. This mission would be Deadlock with Vanguard Strike deployment. Deadlock is a maelstrom mission where you draw 6 cards on turn 1, 5 on turn 2, etc., so it is very important to start scoring points early on as your opportunities to score decrease each turn (impossible cards to achieve could be re-drawn without penalty).
The battlefield looked to be a blighted wasteland with a large building in the centre and a couple of hills and rock formations scattered around the board.
As a reminder, my army consisted of:
Kor'sarro Khan- Moondrakken (with CS)
Librarian- Mastery Level 2, Auspex, Meltabombs, Force Sword, Bolt Pistol (with C)
5 Command Squad- Mounted on bikes, 4 grav guns, 2 storm shields, Apothecary (CS)
5 Bikers- 2 Grav guns, sergeant has meltabombs (GB1)
5 Bikers- 2 Grav guns, sergeant has meltabombs (GB2)
5 Bikers- 2 Meltaguns, sergeant has meltabombs (MB)
10 Tactical marines- Meltagun, sergeant has combi-melta and meltabombs (TS1 and TS2)
Drop Pod- Storm Bolter (DP2)
5 Scouts- Bolt pistols, close combat weapons, sergeant has meltabombs (Sc)
Landspeeder Storm- Heavy Bolter, Cerberus Missile launcher (LS)
Drop Pod- Deathwind missile launcher (DP1)
Stormtalon- TL assault cannons, skyhammer missile launcher (ST)
2 Attack Bikes- Multimeltas (AB)
5 Devastators- 4 Missile Launchers (D)
Rhino- Storm Bolter (R)
3 Centurions- Grav amps and grav cannons, hurricane bolters (C)
For this game, my psychic powers were once again Presecince and Psychic Shriek.
Jason's army consisted of:
Kairos Fateweaver (F)
Herald of Tzeentch- level 3 psyker (H1)
Herald of Tzeentch- level 3 psyker (H2)
20 Pink Horrors (with H1)
20 Pink Horrors (with H2)
Level 2 Tzeentch sorcerer- plasma pistol (with CM)
5 Chaos Space Marines (CM)
5 Havocs- Missile launchers (Flakk missiles) (H)
3 Obliterators (O)
Soul Grinder (SG1)
Soul Grinder (SG2)
His (many, many) psychic powers were:
Fateweaver- (left head) Infernal Gaze, Precognition, Flame Breath, (right head) Iron Arm, Prescience, Summoning
Sorceror- Psychic Shriek, Breath of Chaos
Heralds- all the Tzeentch powers
A tough looking army. Lots of daemons would be problematic as Jason immediately got the full 18 warp charge points before even rolling each turn (my Librarian would struggle to get any powers off this game). Summoning would be useful in a maelstrom mission, allowing Jason to put units on the objectives quickly.
On the Chaos marine side, the Soul Grinders would need to be dealt with quickly, as they would destroy any unit they charged.
|Terrain and placement of objectives.|
I lost the roll for table edge and Jason chose the side with the large building, but with the fewest objectives. I also lost the roll for deployment and Jason chose to go first. He deployed one Soul Grinder on each flank, one unit of horrors in the centre and one on his left flank. The obliterators, chaos marines and Fateweaver went on the right flank and the Havocs went on the large hill.
In reply, I deployed most of my army far away on my left corner, staying away from the enemy guns. One unit of bikers went on the right flank, ready to move for the closest objectives if required. I didn't perform any Scout moves- I couldn't rely on seizing the initiative and I wanted to stay away from his army for the moment. With bike moves and turboboost, I was confident I could get to almost all the objectives on turn 1, so would wait to see what cards I could draw.
I failed to seize the initiative and Jason went first.
TURN 1- DAEMONS
In the first turn, Jason drew Objective 1, Objective 5, Objective 6, Scour the skies (kill a flyer), Blood and Guts (destroy an enemy unit in the assault phase) and Hungry for Glory (issue a challenge).
Kairos launched into the air, flying high to survey the battlefield. He saw the Obliterators, two Soul Grinders, daemons and Chaos Space marines advance on the enemy.
In the psychic phase, Kairos summoned a unit of horrors onto objective 5, periling on the roll but being unharmed by the warp energies, then casting Iron Arm to protect himself. The Horrors cast flickering fire of Tzeentch on the meltagun bikers, killing three of the White Scars (they passed their morale).
|More Horrors appear.|
In the shooting phase, the Soul Grinder on the right fired at the meltagun bikers, eager to finish the unit off. One biker died to the main cannon, despite the Jinking of the rider. The Rhino was also struck in the blast and was immobilised. The Obliterators fired at the Landspeeder storm, easily destroying the skimmer. The Chaos space marines ran forward, eager to get to their ancient enemies.
|The casualties begin.|
At the end of his first turn, James scored Objective 1 and Objective 5 and discarded Blood and Guts.
TURN 1- WHITE SCARS
In my first turn, I drew Objective 1, Objective Objective 3, Objective 6, Ascendency (control 3 objectives) and Big Game Hunter (destroy an enemy vehicle).
The drop pod carrying the Centurions crashed to the ground beside objective 3, the squad inside advancing into cover. The grav bikers moved to capture objective 2, while the Command squad secured objective 6. The lone meltagun biker and scouts retreated from the enemy firepower as the Attack bikes moved up to target the advancing enemy line.
In the psychic phase, the Librarian attempted to manifest Psychic shriek and prescience, but his meagre efforts were seriously outmatched by the daemons.
On the left flank, the attack bikes fired at the Soul Grinder, but failed to hit the beast. Behind them, the Devastators fired frag missiles at the newly summoned horrors, sending 6 of the daemons back to the warp. On the right flank, the grav bikers and Centurions fired at the Soul Grinder, easily wrecking the daemonic vehicle.
In my turn, I scored all but Objective 1, gaining 2 pts for Ascendency. I discarded Objective 1.
DAEMONS- 2 (+ Draw Blood)
WHITE SCARS- 6 (+ Draw Blood)
A very good turn for me. I had drawn most of the objectives in my half of the board and some easy to score bonus ones. James was unlucky with getting far away objectives and cards that required combat this early in the game.
TURN 2- DAEMONS
James drew Objective 5 and Witch Hunter (kill an enemy psyker) to add to objective 6, Hungry for Glory and Scour the skies he had last turn.
On the right flank, Kairos, the Soul Grinder, Obliterators and Chaos marines advanced on the enemy army. The two horror units also moved up to engage the White Scars. The Horrors activated their Portal glyph, generating a swirling maelstrom of warp energy for new daemons to pour forth. A solitary horror appeared, advancing on the attack bikes.
|A hideous, daemonic, green circle (which I kept moving all game, by mistake).|
In the psychic phase, the lone horror cast Bolt of Change on the attack bikes, but their Jinking blocked the attack. The horrors in the centre cast flickering fire of Tzeentch on the bikers holding objective 2. The daemons struck, causing 6 wounds on the bikers. I rolled for my 3+ armour and managed to fail 5 of the 6 saves, wiping the unit out. Seeing the success of their brethren, the second horror unit targeted the Centurions with the same power, but could only cause one wound on the mighty warriors. To make matter worse, the unit gained 6+ Feel no Pain from the power.
In the shooting phase, Khorne vented his displeasure on the lack of blood, striking the command squad and drop pod, though neither unit was harmed.
The Havocs fired their Krak missiles at the Centurions, causing one of them to finally fall. The Soul Grinder on the other flank fired at the Command Squad, felling one of the elite warriors (James hit 5 times and I failed 3 Jink saves, but managed to make two Feel no Pain rolls).
The Obliterators fired at the Attack Bikes with their assault cannons, causing 6 wounds. For the second time in the turn, I managed to fail 5 of the wounds and the squad perished! (The offending dice were banished to the side of the table, never to be used again).
On the left flank, the unit of Horrors attempted to charge the Centurions, but failed to make the distance necessary.
At the end of his turn, James scored Objective 5 and discarded Hungry for Glory.
TURN 2- WHITE SCARS
This turn, I drew Objective 4, No Prisoners (destroy an enemy unit), Hungry for Glory (issue a challenge), Psychological warfare (make enemy fail a morale test) and Scour the Skies (destroy an enemy flyer or flying monstrous creature). My plan was to take out the lone horror and summoned unit of horrors. If I could kill one more unit, I would get bonus points for No Prisoners.
The second drop pod arrived, landing in front of the Havocs and pink horrors. The tactical marines emerged to engage the enemy.
The lone meltagun biker and Command Squad advanced on the lone horror in front of them. On the right flank, the grav bikers moved up to engage the other unit of horrors.
Once again, the Librarian was impotent to cast any powers this turn against the Daemon onslaught.
The melta-wielding tactical squad fired at the Havocs, but were unable to wound them (I hit with the meltagun, but rolled a one to wound). The Centurions fired at the same target, easily wiping them out.
The grav bikers fired at the horrors, killing two, while the second tactical squad added their bolter fire, but could only banish one more Horror.
The Devastators fired at the Horrors beside objective 5 with their frag missiles. Some very poor scatter rolls saw two of the blasts deviate and only 8 hits were caused. Of the 8 hits, only three were wounded (despite requiring 3+) and one daemon died. The Rhino fired also, killing another two horrors and leaving one daemon left to deny me my bonus points.
The meltagun biker fired at the lone horror, but failed to kill it. The Command squad fired at the Soul Grinder, but their snap shots failed to hit the vehicle (it was such a poor roll, that even if I was firing normally, I would have only scored one hit on it anyway).
|Even if I wasn't snap firing, this would still be abysmal.|
In the assault phase, the grav bikers assaulted the horrors, the sergeant issuing a challenge that the Herald denied. The bikers struck, killing 5 in total for the loss of one biker in return. The horrors lost combat and three more daemons were banished to the warp.
At the end of turn 2, I scored Objective 4, Hungry for Glory and No Prisoners, discarding Scour the Skies.
DAEMONS- 3 (+ Draw Blood)
WHITE SCARS- 9 (+ Draw Blood)
Again, a good turn for me, pulling ahead of James by 6 points without too many losses.
TURN 3- DAEMONS
This turn, James drew Objective 2, Objective 6 and retained Witch Hunter and Scour the Skies from last turn.
Kairos swooped over the command squad, vector striking them on his way to the White Scar's deployment zone, but causing no damage. In the centre, the horrors in the ruins moved forward toward the objective, covered by the Soul Grinder and Chaos marines.
In the psychic phase, Kairos failed to cast Summoning on a nearby objective. The Chaos Sorcerer attempted to cast psychic shriek on the Command Squad, but the power was blocked. The Horrors failed to cast Bolt of Change, but managed to cast Infernal Gateway on the Devastators, killing two.
In the shooting phase, the Soul Grinder fired at the Command squad, but the shot scattered off the unit, causing no harm. The Obliterators fired three plasma cannons at the Command squad, but the Jinking of the bikers meant they survived. The Chaos space marines fired at the Command Squad, but were unable to harm them.
In the assault phase, the Soul Grinder attempted to assault the Command squad, but failed. A single horror managed to assault the unit, but was easily slain by Khan. On the other flank, the sergeant wounded the Herald in combat, but no other wounds were caused. The bikers failed to hit and run out of combat.
At the end of the turn, James scored Objective 2 and discarded Scour the Skies.
TURN 3- WHITE SCARS
In this turn, I drew Objective 5, Overwhelming Firepower (destroy an enemy unit in the shooting phase) and Assassinate (kill an enemy character) to go with Psychological warfare.
The Scouts climbed in to the safety of the Rhino as the Command Squad moved up to claim objective 5, while the lone meltagun biker moved up in front of the Soul Grinder. On the right flank, the centurions and tactical marines advanced on the horror unit.
The Meltagun biker fired at the Soul Grinder, but missed with his one shot. The Rhino fired at the lone Horror, slaying the daemon. The Command Squad snap fired at the Obliterators, causing one wound.
The drop pod fired its Deathwind launcher at the middle horror unit, killing one. The Devastators fired at the Chaos Space Marines, killing two, including the sergeant.
The tactical squads and Centurions charged the Horrors. The sergeant struck at the Herald in the challenge, causing one wound that was saved. The other squads managed to kill one daemon for no loss in return (James had use the Grimoire of true names on them every turn to give them a 3+ invulnerable save). The daemons lost combat and three more daemons were banished to the warp.
At the end of the turn, I scored Objective 5, Overwhelming Firepower and Assassinate. I discarded Psychological Warfare.
DAEMONS- 4 (+ Draw Blood)
WHITE SCARS- 12 (+ Draw Blood)
At the end of turn 3, I had drawn far ahead and it was unlikely that James would be able to catch me.
TURN 4- DAEMONS
In the final turn, James drew Objective 3, Objective 6 and still had Witch Hunter.
The Soul Grinder and Obliterators advanced on the Command Squad, the Chaos Marines moved up on the lone meltagun biker, while Kairos swooped in on the Devastators. Five more horrors spilled forth from the portal, moving towards objective 6.
In the psychic phase, Kairos summoned a new unit of Horrors behind the Rhino. The Horrors cast Flickering fire of Tzeentch on the Devastators, wiping out the unit. They then attempted to fire Bolt of Change on the Rhino, but their efforts were blocked.
In the shooting phase, Khorne once again showed his displeasure with the lack of combat, striking at the Command squad, but failing to wound them. The Soul Grinder fired at the Command Squad, killing one of the squad. The Obliterators fired assault cannons at the Command Squad, killing another two.
The Sorcerer fired his plasma pistol at the meltagun biker, slaying the White Scar.
In the assault phase, the Obliterators and Soul Grinder charged the Command squad. The White Scars struck first, but could not wound their opponents. The forces of Chaos struck back, killing all the Command Squad and putting two wounds on Khan. He managed to Hit and Run out of combat and survived.
On the other flank, the White Scars managed to slay one Horror for no loss in return. The Bikers and Centurions Hit and Ran out of combat.
At the end of the turn, James scored Objective 6.
TURN 4- WHITE SCARS
In my final turn, I drew Objective 4, Objective 5 and Blood and Guts (destroy an enemy unit in the assault phase).
The Stormtalon finally arrived, moving on to target Fatewaver. Khan moved back to grab objective 5, while the Scouts left the Rhino to grab Objective 4.
In the shooting phase, the Stormtalon fired at Fateweaver, causing one wound. The mighty daemon then failed his grounding test and took another wound.
In the assault phase, the Bikers charged back in to combat against the Herald, their hammer of wrath attacks finally slaying the enemy warrior.
With that, the game ended. I scored all three objective cards.
|The end of the game.|
DAEMONS- 5 (+ Draw Blood and Linebreaker)
WHITE SCARS- 15 (+ Draw Blood and Linebreaker)
Thanks to James for an interesting and exciting game, it was a lot closer than the final score shows and I was seriously worried at times, especially when I lost a few units in the first turn.
As much as I had some pretty poor luck during the game (failing five out of six 3+ saves twice in one turn), it was more than made up for by my luck with the maelstrom cards. I seemed to draw easily achievable cards each turn and James struggled to get scoring cards, especially in the first turn.
My Librarian was pretty useless in this game. With a guaranteed 18 warp charge points each turn, it was pretty easy for James to shut down all my powers during the game and ensure that he could cast whatever he wanted each turn. I thought I was in real trouble with summoning, as James could have summoned new units on the objectives and stopped me from scoring them.
My left flank was pretty much gone by the end of the game thanks to the focus of the Soul Grinder and Obliterators, whereas I held the right flank due to the Centurions, Bikers and Tactical marines. We both agreed that if the game came down to Eternal war objectives scoring at the end, I would most likely have lost as James had a lot more units at the end than I did.
Overall, the game went very well for me. It's hard to plan maelstrom missions as you don't know what cards you will draw each turn. In this game, my card draws were a lot better than James', unfortunately, that is just the way the game goes sometimes.
Rapid Fire 2015:
Game 5- White Scars vs Daemons/Chaos Space Marines
Armies on Display