Thursday, 16 February 2017

Battle Report 96- 1500 pts Deathwatch vs Crimson Fists

This week's battle report sees my Deathwatch take on Maurice's Crimson Fists army at the Newcastle Warlords gaming club. 

Maurice was recently getting back into 40k, so we decided to play the Relic Eternal War mission. 

My army consisted of:
Combined Arms Detachment
Watch Captain Artemis (with VV)
5 Veterans- 4 Frag Cannons, Storm Shield (V1)
Drop Pod (DP1)
5 Veterans- Meltagun, 3 Combi-meltas, Auspex (V2)
Drop Pod (DP2)
5 Veterans- 5 Stalker Pattern Bolters (V3)
5 Veterans- 5 Deathwatch Shotguns, Storm Shield (V4)
Rhino (R)
4 Bikers- Power Weapons, Meltabombs (B1)
4 Bikers- Power Weapons, Meltabombs (B2)
4 Vanguard Veterans- 2 Heavy Thunder Hammers, 2 Pairs of Lightning Claws (VV)
Corvus Blackstar- Inferno Halo Launcher (CB)

This list was based on revision to my tournament list that I had recently made to my Deathwatch army. My warlord trait was set with Artemis, giving me an extra change to the Mission Tactics.

Maurice's army consisted of:
Combined Arms Detachment
Pedro Kantor (with St11)
Librarian- Mastery Level 1, Terminator Armour (with T)
5 Scouts- Shotguns (S1)
Landspeeder Storm (LS1)
5 Scouts- Bolters (S2)
Landspeeder Storm (LS2)
3 Devastator Centurions- 2 with TL Heavy Bolters and Hurricane  Bolters, one with TL Lascannons and Missile Launchers, Omniscope (C)

1st Company Task Force
5 Sternguard Veterans- Plasma Pistol, Power Sword, Hand Flamer, Combi-melta (St11)
5 Sternguard Veterans- 2 Combi-meltas, Heavy Bolter (St12)
5 Terminators- Assault Cannon, Chainfist (T)

10th Company Task Force
5 Scouts- Camo Cloaks, 5 Sniper Rifles (S3)
5 Scouts- Camo Cloaks, 5 Sniper Rifles (S4)
5 Scouts- Combi-melta, Heavy Bolter (S5)
Landspeeder Storm (LS3)
5 Scouts- Missile Launcher (S6)

His warlord was Pedro Kantor. The Librarian rolled on Pyromancy, getting Molten Beam and Flame Breath.

I won the roll for deployment and allowed Maurice to go first. He set up the two units of Sternguard on the left flank and the Centurion in the centre. The Terminators and Librarian went into reserve and all the Scout units would be infiltrating.

I set up the Stalker Deathwatch in the woods in the centre of my deployment zone, shielded by the large building from the Sternguard. I put a unit of Bikers on each side and the Rhino with the Shotgun marines on the left.

Maurice deployed the Scouts with the Missile Launcher in the left ruins, with the two Landspeeder Storms on the left. The two Sniper squads went in the forest to the right, with the third Storm in front of them.

I failed to seize the initiative and Maurice took the first turn.


Pedro Kantor led the Sternguard and Centurions in an advance on the Deathwatch forces. On the right flank, the Landspeeder Storm advanced around the ruins to take up a firing position.

The Sniper Scouts opened fire on the Bikers closest to them, wounding twice and killing one of the squad. The Landspeeder Storm in front of them opened fire, wounding one of the Bikers and killing one.

On the other flank, the Scouts fired their Missile Launcher at the Rhino, penetrating it and stunning it. One Landspeeder Storm fired at the closest Bikers, wounding once with its Heavy Bolter and killing one. The other Landspeeder Storm and Heavy Bolter inside fired at the Bikers, wounding them three times and killing two of the squad.

The Centurions fired at the Bike squad in front of them. The Heavy Bolters failed to cause any damage, but one was slain by the Lascannon of the Sergeant.

That was a tough first turn for me, losing 6 of my 8 Bikers to mostly Heavy Bolters!


The Drop Pod arrived, landing next to the Crimson Fists' Warlord, the Deathwatch inside disembarking to target them. The Rhino and two surviving Bikers moved up the right flank to support them.

In the shooting phase, the Frag Cannons fired at Sternguard in front of them. Pedro Kantor and his squad perished in the volley, along with two in the other squad (the others were out of range or they would have surely be wiped out in the volley). The survivors broke and fled back towards their lines.

The Veterans in the forest fired their Stalker Boltguns at the Centurions. Their poisoned shells struck at the unit, killing one with their rending shots and wounding another 5 times. Maurice failed 3 of the 5 saves and was left with one Centurion on one wound.


The Terminators arrived, being led by the Librarian to target the Deathwatch. The Landspeeder Storms split up to target the enemy threats.

In the psychic phase, the Librarian cast a Molten Beam at the Deathwatch, killing 4 of them (I made a mistake here, I thought a beam was a 1" line, not a 1 mm line, so only one of the Veterans should have perished, not 4!).

The Sternguard rallied, firing at the lone survivor of the Frag Cannon squad, but was unable to bring him down. The Terminator opened fire at the survivor, obliterating him with the Assault Cannon.

The Landspeeder Storm behind the Rhino tried to penetrate its vulnerable rear armour, but was unable to get through it. The Sergeant embarked fired his Combi-melta at the vehicle, but failed to hit.

The Scouts in the ruins fired at the Biker, but failed to bring him down with their Bolters or Missile Launcher. The Scouts in the Landspeeder Storm near the Relic fired their Shotguns at the lone Biker, killing him with their firepower.

The Sniper Scouts fired at the Stalker Veterans, killing one of the squad. The Centurion added his firepower, killing another two.


The second Drop Pod arrived, intending to land near the Terminators, but the Pod scattered 7" out of range. The Corvus Blackstar arrived, launching itself into the battle. The Biker advanced on the Landspeeder Storm. The Rhino moved up to the edge of the ruins, the Veterans inside leaping out and training their Shotguns on the squad.

The newly arrived Veterans fired their Meltaguns at the lone Centurion, easily killing him. The Corvus Blackstar opened fire on the Terminators. The heavy shells pounded the Crimson Fists' elite, killing three of the squad.

The Veterans on the right flank fired their shotguns at the Scouts in the ruins, but only managed to kill one of the squad.

The Biker attempted to charge the Landspeeder Storm on the Relic, but he was cut down by the overwatch fire.


The Terminators turned towards the Corvus Blackstar, while the Scouts in the centre of the battlefield advanced on the Meltagun Veterans.

The Librarian fired a Molten Beam at the Veterans, killing one of them.

The Scouts fired their Shotguns at the Veterans in front of them, wounding them 3 times. I then failed 2 saves and two perished. The Sternguard fired at the squad, killing another one of the Veterans. The Snipers fired at the Stalker unit, but failed to cause any damage.

On the left flank, the Scouts and their transports opened fire on the Shotgun Veterans and destroyed them in a hail of bolter fire.

The Scouts assaulted the last of the Meltagun Veterans. The Deathwatch Marine struck at the Scouts, killing one of them. The Scouts wounded twice, but failed to get past his armour. The Scouts failed their morale test and fled towards their battle lines.


The Corvus Blackstar manoeuvred to ground level, allowing Artemis to lead his squad towards the enemy Terminators.

The Veteran in the enemy deployment zone fired at the Sternguard, but failed to cause any damage. The Corvus Blackstar fired three of its rockets at the Terminators. Only one rocket struck true, which impacted on the Terminator who remained unscathed (Maurice passed his Invulnerable save).

The two Drop Pods fired at the Sternguard, killing two of the squad.

Artemis led his unit in an assault on the Terminators. Artemis struck at the Librarian, but failed to do any damage. The Lightning Claws of the Veterans managed to slay one of the Terminators. The Librarian struck at Artemis, wounding him once. The Deathwatch then swung their Heavy Thunder Hammers, killing the entire squad for no loss in return.


The Landspeeder Storms converged on Artemis' squad, while the Scouts advanced on the lone Deathwatch Veteran.

The Scouts fired their Shotguns at the Veteran, killing him. The rest of the army opened fire on the central squad, wiping them out with their massed firepower.


The Corvus Blackstar fired at the Landspeeder Storm, killing it with its assault cannons.

We decided to call the game there. I had very little left and Maurice would easily claim the Relic. A win for the Crimson Fists!

Thanks to Maurice for a fun game, I hope he enjoyed the return to 40k.

Not much I could say about that. The massed Bolter and Shotgun fire of the Crimson Fists was simply too much for my Marines.

It was annoying to lose so many of my Bikers in turn 1 thanks to some very poor armour saves. Their power weapons would have been great for taking on the Scouts and Sternguard Marines.

I will need to have a rematch with Maurice at some point to restore my honour!


  1. Losing those bikers was the turning point this time I think - no force as elite as this one is going to recover from something like that without doing something very special.

    Despite the win, I think your opponent's recent return to the game is perhaps reflected in some of his choices - as I'm sure you pointed out the HB variant on the centurions isn't particularly effective compared to the other options, and I'd be inclined to say that the terminator squad could be replaced more effectively by other options.

    Kantor is great, but he really needs to be in some kind of Assault vehicle or at least protected from the kind of attack you hit him with - but that will come with experience.

    He seemed to play to the mission very well, hitting your mobility early and not letting up the pressure on anything that went near the relic.

    1. Yeah, I'd like to say I was going easy on him as it was one of his first games back, but that's not an excuse I can use!

      The massed Bolter fire from the army was great, especially with the Bolter drill re-rolls. In hindsight, taking the first turn would have been better, but I was a little worried about obliterating him with my Drop Pod unit on turn 1 and leading to a poor game. As it was, he survived the Pod unit quite well and hit back strong!

  2. Oof, harsh first turn indeed...

    Those scouts seem to be ready for becoming full battle-brothers though, not to be taken lightly!

    Could you please enlighten me on how you create those nice schematics to illustrate movement and battles? :)



    1. Yeah, the Bikers are great, but very expensive, so losing them so quickly hurts in this army!

      I use a program called Battle Chronicler ( to do the maps. It's pretty easy to use. If you are interested, I could write up a tutorial for the blog?

    2. Have such a tutorial never hurts, would love to see it, cheers :)

      I quickly checked the website while at work, I see it's windows only. Will have to see if it works in Wine on Linux!

  3. I enjoyed reading your battle report Michael. It seems like the dice weren't with you in the first turn. Those meta-bombs could have done some damage.

    1. Thanks, glad you enjoyed it. Yeah, we all get games where the dice seem to abandon us from time to time. It generally evens out, but you always remember the bad games over the good!

  4. Great battlerep. Just building up a DW force myself. Worry about committing too many points to a full 4 frag squad. Must say I've Got a few plain vet squads. Also like the vets in a rhino taking pot shots.
    Your prob with the Fists was one I've found, namely volume of fire will always take us down with our 3+ saves.

    1. Cheers Ross. I think that 4 Frag Cannons in the squad are overkill for most units. Two or three seems like the right number.

      The Crimson Fists can be pretty brutal. The volume of re-rolls makes even the simple bolter incredibly powerful for taking out marines.