Thursday, 18 January 2018

Battle Report 129- 2000 pts Genestealers Cults vs Space Wolves

This week's battle report sees my Genestealers Cults take on Ben's Space Wolves in a maelstrom of war game. 

This game was fought at the Spiky Club in Reading and featured the second outing for my Genestealers Cult. 

My army consisted of:
Brigade Detachment
Patriarch- Mass Hypnosis (Pt)
Magus- Force Stave, Might from Beyond (M)
Primus- Needle Pistol, Bonesword, Toxic Injector Claw (Pr)
10 Neophyte Hybrids- Mining Laser, Grenade Launcher, Autogun (N1)
10 Neophyte Hybrids- Mining Laser, Autogun (N2)
10 Acolyte Hybrids- 2 Heavy Rock Cutters (A1)
10 Acolyte Hybrids- 2 Heavy Rock Drills (A2)
10 Acolyte Hybrids- 2 Heavy Rock Saws (A3)
5 Acolyte Hybrids (A4)
15 Purestrain Genestealers- Purestrain Talons, Rending Claws (PG)
4 Aberrants- Power Hammers (Ab1)
4 Aberrants- Power Picks (Ab2)
Scout Sentinel- Heavy Flamer (S1)
Scout Sentinel- Heavy Flamer (S2)
Scout Sentinel- Multi-laser (S3)
Goliath Rockgrinder- Heavy Stubber, Clearance Incinerator (GR1)
Goliath Rockgrinder- Heavy Stubber, Clearance Incinerator (GR2)
Cult Leman Russ- Battle Cannon, 3 Heavy Bolters (LR)

12 Command Points

I decided to go for a massed force for my Cult to get those precious command points. This would be the first game where I would be testing my Leman Russ and Scout Sentinels. I was hoping they would provide some good board control with the Sentinels and the Leman Russ would give some good firepower for the Space Wolves. 
This would allow me to put a fair few units in Cult Ambush to attack the Marines. 

Ben's army consisted of:
Battalion Detachment
Bjorn the Fell-handed- Helfrost Cannon, Heavy Flamer (B)
Njal Stormcaller- Runic Terminator Armour, Staff of the Stormcaller (N)
5 Grey Hunter- Bolters, Chainsword, Plasma Gun (GH1)
5 Grey Hunter- Bolters, Chainsword, Plasma Gun (GH2)
5 Blood Claws- Plasma Pistol, Bolt Pistols, Chainswords (BC1)
5 Blood Claws- Plasma Pistol, Bolt Pistols, Chainswords (BC2)
Razorback- Twin Assault Cannons, Storm Bolter, Hunter-killer Missile (R1)
Razorback- Twin Assault Cannons, Storm Bolter, Hunter-killer Missile (R2)

Outrider Detachment
Arjac Rockfist- Foehammer (A)
5 Wolf Guard Terminators- Assault Cannon, Storm Bolters, Power Fist (T1)
5 Wolf Guard- Jump Packs, Chainswords, Storm Bolters (WG)
Lucas the Trickster (L)

Vanguard Detachment
Iron Priest- Thunder Hammer, Servo-arm (P)
3 Thunderwolf Cavalry- Thunder Hammers, Storm Shields (T2)
5 Fenrisian Wolves (FW1)
5 Fenrisian Wolves (FW2)

9 Command Points

An interesting Space Wolves list. I have yet to play them in 8th edition, so would be interested to see how tough they were. 
The army features some fast moving elements in the Wolves, Cavalry and Wolf Guard. They also had some solid firepower with the two Razorbacks and Grey Hunters. 

We were playing the Kill Confirmed maelstrom mission. This consisted of three cards per turn. Players are not allowed to discard cards that involve killing enemy units (unless the card is impossible to achieve). In addition, bonus victory points were awarded for each unit destroyed during the game. We were using Vanguard Strike deployment. 

We set up the objectives as shown below:

We then deployed our units as shown below:

I focused my army on the left flank, putting a unit of Neophytes on the objective in the woods and one on the objective to the left. I deployed the Leman Russ a bit further back thanks to the long range of its guns. These three units allowed me to block out the rear of my deployment zone, ensuring that the Terminators and Wolf Guard could not arrive behind me. I put the Rockgrinders on the right (with a unit of Aberrants in each), along with the three Scout Sentinels. If I got first turn, they could move up, otherwise they could retreat to get out of range. I put the rest of my forces in Cult Ambush. 

Ben deployed the Thunderwolf Cavalry and Wolves on his right flank. One unit of Grey Hunters went in the ruins, holding an objective, while another unit went on the hill, besides the Iron Priest and Bjorn. The Razorbacks went in the centre, with the Blood Claws inside. Ben kept Arjac Rockfist, Njal Stormcaller, the Termintors and Wolf Guard in reserve. 

We rolled off for first turn. Ben rolled a 1, which made me quite confident until I rolled a 1 as well! Ben got the first turn, as he got the +1 for finishing deploying first. I failed to seize the initiative. 

In his first turn, Ben drew Secure Objective 1, Secure Objective 3 and Secure Objective 5. 

On the right flank, the Thunderwolf Cavalry led the Fenrisian Wolves forward towards the enemy lines. On the left flank, the Grey Hunters, Bjorn the Fell-handed and the Iron Priest moved up the hill. The two Razorbacks moved up the centre of the field, one moving out of line of sight. 

Arjac Rockfist, Njal Stormcaller and the Terminators teleported onto the battlefield, landing on the right flank next to the Neophyte Hybrids. 

In the psychic phase, Njal attempted to Smite the Neophytes. He failed the roll on a 3. Ben used a command point re-roll, but rolled another 1, failing the power. He then attempted to cast Jaws of the World Wolf on the Neophytes, but failed to manifest the power. 

The Terminators opened fire on the Neophyte Hybrids. The Assault Cannon killed two of the squad. The Storm Bolters wounded 8 times, felling all 8 of the surviving squad and scoring First Blood. 

Bjorn targeted the Rockgrinder with his Helfrost Cannon, but missed after rolling a double 1 to hit. Under his direction, the Grey Hunters fired at the Rockgrinder, wounding it once with their Plasma Gun. 
The Razorback fired its Assault Cannons at the Rockgrinder, wounding it twice. The Hunter-killer Missile fired at the Leman Russ, hitting and wounding it 5 times. 

At the end of the turn, Ben scored First Blood, Secure Objective 1 and Secure Objective 5. He discarded Secure Objective 3. 

In my first turn, I drew Defend Objective 1, Defend Objective 6 and Advance (have no units in my deployment zone). Those wolves would need to be taken care of. 

On the right flank, the two Scout Sentinels moved up on the Wolves, supported by the Goliath Rockgrinder. The other Rockgrinder moved to combat the threat of the Terminators. 

At the end of the phase, the Primus led the Purestrain Genestealers. I used the Meticulous Uprising and rolled a 6 on the Cult Ambush table. The Genestealers moved up to the Thunderwolves and Fenrisian Wolves, while the Primus moved to secure the objective. The Magus brought in the Acolytes with the Rock Cutters, getting a 5 after a command point re-roll on the ambush table. They moved into range of the Wolves as well on the other side. 

The Magus tried to cast Might from Beyond on the Purestrains, but failed to manifest the power, even with a command point re-roll. 

In the shooting phase, the Leman Russ fired at the Razorback. The Battle Cannon got 7 shots and wounded with two, taking four wounds from the enemy transport. The Heavy Bolters took another 2 wounds from the Razorback. 

The Rockgrinder on the left fired at the Terminators, but failed to do any damage with the Clearance Incinerator or Heavy Stubber. 

The other Rockgrinder fired at the closest unit of Fenrisian Wolves, killing three of the squad. The Sentinel fired its Heavy Flamer at the squad, killing another one of them. The other Sentinel fired on the Thunderwolf Cavalry, but caused no damage. 

The Acolytes fired on the other squad of Fenrisian Wolves, killing one of the squad with their pistols. 

In the charge phase, one Scout Sentinel, the Acolytes and the Purestrain Genestealers charged the Thunderwolf Cavalry and Fenrisian Wolves. On the other flank, the Rockgrinder failed its charge against the Terminators. 

The Genestealers struck at the Thunderwolves with a flurry of claws, wounding them 15 times. They failed 5 saves and one of the Cavalry perished. Some of the squad struck the Fenrisian Wolves, easily shredding them with their attacks. 

Ben used two command points to interrupt and attack with the Thunderwolf Cavalry. The riders struck at the Acolytes, but failed to hit with any of their attacks. The wolves then attacked, killing three of the squad. 

The Acolytes attacked the Thunderwolves, but caused no damage thanks to their invulnerable saves. Finally, the Scout Sentinel attacked, causing a single wound. Ben failed his invulnerable save, using a command point re-roll, but also failed the save, killing another of the Thunderwolves. 

At the end of the turn, the last Fenrisian Wolf was killed by morale. I scored no points this turn and discarded Advance. Having one of the Cavalry survive was actually quite good for me, it would stop my units from being targeted by enemy shooting the next turn. 

Space Wolves- 2 maelstrom points + 1 kill point + First Blood = 5
Genestealer Cults- 0 maelstrom points + 2 kill points = 2

In his second turn, Ben drew Master the Warp (cast a psychic power), Behind Enemy Lines ( have units in enemy deployment zone) and Defend Objective 6. 

The Razorbacks moved up the centre of the battlefield, moving around the right of the ruins. The Space Wolves on the hill continued to move up on the Cult forces. The Terminators moved up on the Rockgrinder. The Wolf Guard arrived from reserve, arriving on top of the ruins next to the Goliath Rockgrinder. 

In the psychic phase, Njal cast Smite, putting a wound on the Rockgrinder. He then cast Tempest's Wrath on the Leman Russ, giving it -1 to hit. 

In the shooting phase, the Terminators opened fire on the Goliath Rockgrinder. The Assault Cannon didn't wound the vehicle, while the Storm Bolters of the squad managed to do a single wound. Arjac threw his Hammer at the transport vehicle, hitting and wounding after the use of a command point re-roll and taking two damage from it. 

The Wolf Guard fired their Storm Bolters at the Rockgrinder, managing a great 7 wounds and destroying it. The Aberrants disembarked, moving into the ruins and out of line of sight of the enemy army. 

One of the Razorbacks opened fire on the Leman Russ. The Assault Cannon didn't do any damage. The other Razorback fired its Hunter-Killer Missile at the Leman Russ, hitting and wounding, but was saved by the armour of the heavy vehicle. The rest of its weapons fired at the Neophytes in the woods, killing 6 of the squad. 

Bjorn then fired his Helfrost Cannon at the Leman Russ, hitting and wounding. The cannon did 6 damage, leaving the tank on a single wound. The Grey Hunters fired at the Leman Russ, hoping to finish it off, but failed to do any damage. Annoyingly, thanks to the damage on the Russ and the -1 to hit from the psychic power, the Leman Russ would be unable to fire as it would need a 7+ to hit. A nice tactic from Ben!

The other squad of Grey Hunters fired at the second Goliath Rockgrinder, wounding it twice. 

In the charge phase, the Terminators attempted to assault the Aberrants, but failed the 6" charge. In the fight phase, the lone Thunderwolf attacked the Purestrain Genestealers, killing 5 of the squad. The Genestealers struck back, killing the last of the squad. They consolidated towards the Grey Hunters in ruins. 

In the morale phase, the Genestealers passed their test, while one of the Neophytes fled the field. 

At the end of his turn, Ben scored Master the Warp and Behind Enemy Lines. He discarded Secure Objective 6. I also scored Defend Objective 1 and Defend Objective 6. 

In my turn, I drew Secure Objective 1, Big Game Hunter (kill a model with 10 or more wounds) and Hold the Line (have no enemy units in my deployment zone). 

The Aberrants moved up on the Razorback, while the Rockgrinder and one of the Scout Sentinels moved up on the other Sentinel. The Genestealers advanced on the Grey Hunters in the ruins, the Primus also moving to support them. The squad of Acolytes moved up towards the centre of the battlefield.

At the end of the phase, the Patriarch led a unit of Acolytes onto the battlefield. I used the Uprising Stratagem and rolled a double 1 on the table. I used a command point re-roll to get a 3, so they set up 12" from the Razorbacks. 

In the psychic phase, the Magus tried to cast Might from Beyond on the Purestrains, but failed to cast it, even with a command point re-roll.

The Rockgrinder and Scout Sentinel fired on the Razorback, but failed to cause any damage. The Neophytes in the forest fired at the damaged Razorback. The Mining Laser managed to hit, taking three wounds from the vehicle.

In the charge phase, the Purestrain Genestealers charged the Grey Hunters in the ruins. The Scout Sentinel charged the Razorback, taking a wound from overwatch fire. The Rockgrinder also charged the Space Wolves' vehicle. The Aberrants charged the other Razorback, also taking a wound from overwatch fire.

The Rockgrinder rammed the Razorback, wounding it twice. One of the wounds got through the armour and the transport vehicle took 2 damage. The Scout Sentinel struck at the vehicle, but caused no damage. At this stage, one Razorback was on 5 wounds and the other was on 4 wounds. The Aberrants needed to hit and wound each vehicle with at least 2 attacks in order to kill them both.

I decided to attack both vehicles with the Aberrants. The first two hit the back Razorback, hitting and wounding twice. Ben made one of his 6+ armour saves and the Razorback survived on 2 wounds! The other two Aberrants struck the second Razorbacks and both wounds managed to get through, destroying the enemy vehicle. Ben used a command point re-roll to try and save the vehicle, but was unsuccessful. I chose not to consolidate the Aberrants into the emerged Blood Claws. It would not have stopped the Razorback from falling back, and would just give Ben bonus attacks from the Blood Claws.

On the other flank, the Genestealers easily wiped out the Grey Hunters with a flurry of clawed attacks.

At the end of my turn, I scored Big Game Hunter and Secure Objective 1.

Space Wolves- 4 maelstrom points + 2 kill points + First Blood = 7
Genestealer Cults- 6 maelstrom points + 4 kill points = 10

At the end of turn 2, I was ahead in points, but the game was still very much in the balance. I was ahead on maelstrom points and kill points at the moment, but my units would be much easier to kill than the Space Wolves units.

This turn, Ben drew Blood and Guts (kill a unit in assault), Advance (have no units in your deployment zone) and Secure Objective 1.

The Blood Claws disembarked from the Razorback, led out by Ulric the Slayer. The Razorback then fell back from combat with the Cult units. The other Blood Claws moved up on the Aberrants. The Grey Hunters moved up the hill, while the Terminators and Wolf Guard continued to move up towards the centre of the battlefield. The Iron Priest healed two wounds on the Razorback.

In the psychic phase, Njal cast Tempest on the Leman Russ, stopping it from shooting once more. He then cast Storm Caller to give the nearby units the benefits of cover.

In the shooting phase, the Razorback started by using its Smoke Launchers. The Terminators fired at the Neophytes in the woods, easily wiping out the rest of the squad. The Wolf Guard fired their Storm Bolters at the Scout Sentinel, taking one wound from it.

The Grey Hunters fired on the Leman Russ, wounding it twice with their Bolters. One of the shots went through the armour and the mighty battle tank was destroyed. The Iron Priest fired on the Goliath Rockgrinder. The shot hit, but failed to wound. Ben used a command point re-roll to succeed in wounding and the Rockgrinder took 2 damage.

Bjorn the Fell-handed fired his Heavy Flamer at the Aberrants, taking two wounds. He then fired his Helfrost cannon at the Rockgrinder and was able to destroy it. Two of the Aberrants perished when disembarking from the transport!

The Blood Claws fired their Pistols at the Aberrants, killing one of the squad. The second unit of Blood Claws fired at the second unit of Aberrants, wounding them three times and slaying all but one of the squad.

In the charge phase, Bjorn assaulted the Scout Sentinel, suffering one wound from its Heavy Flamer in overwatch. Both units of Blood Claws assaulted the two units of Aberrants. Ulric and Lucas joined one unit in their charge.

The Blood Claws struck at the Aberrants, hitting them 15 times, but only wounding 5 times despite needing a 4+. The few wounds were enough though to wipe them out. The other unit of Blood Claws also easily destroyed the second unit of Aberrants.

Equally, Bjorn easily dispatched the Scout Sentinel.

At the end of his turn, Ben scored 1 point for Blood and Guts (he only rolled a 1 on the D3 roll) and Advance, as well as a great 6 kill points. He discarded Secure Objective 1.

In my third turn, I drew Defend Objective 5, Supremacy (hold 3 objectives) and No Prisoners (destroy an enemy unit).

The Genestealers advanced on the Razorback, while the Patriarch also advanced to get into range of the enemy vehicle. The Aberrants moved up on the Blood Claws, while the Primus moved to secure the objective in the ruins. At the end of the phase, I brought in the unit of 10 Aberrants, using the Uprising stratagem and a command point re-roll to get a 4 on the ambush table. I brought them in on the north side, 9" from the further forward Blood Claw unit. The unit of 5 Aberrants also arrived, moving on from the north board edge.

In the psychic phase, the Patriarch cast Mass Hypnosis on the Razorback, stopping it from firing overwatch. The Magus cast Might from Beyond on the Purestrain Genestealers.

The Scout Sentinel fired its Multi-laser at the Blood Claws, hitting once but failing to wound. Annoyingly, this was the first time I had remembered to fire the Multi-laser the whole game!

The Acolyte units fired on the Blood Claws, but failed to cause any damage with their pistols.

In the charge phase, the Partriarch charged Bjorn and the Razorback, taking one wound from Bjorn's Heavy Flamer. The Genestealers charged the Razorback and Iron Priest. One unit of Acolytes charged the Blood Claws and Lucas the Trickster, while two other units of Acolytes charged the second unit of Blood Claws.

The Patriarch struck at Bjorn, only managing to wound him once and causing two damage. Bjorn then got to attack (thanks to his warlord trait), hitting and wounding the Patriarch twice. He caused a massive 11 damage on him, killing the Genestealer Cult warlord. He then consolidated into the  nearby Acolytes.

The Genestealers struck at the Iron Priest, killing him. They also attacked the Razorback, only managing to wound it twice.

The Acolytes struck at the Blood Claws and Lucas, only managing to kill one of the Blood Claws. The other unit of Acolytes managed to wipe out the second unit of Blood Claws, the Acolytes then consolidating into the Razorback to save them from the enemy shooting.

The Blood Claws and Lucas attacked the Acolytes, killing 8 of the squad. In the morale phase, the unit of Acolytes was wiped out.

At the end of my turn, I scored No Prisoners and rolled a 1 for Supremacy. I used a command point re-roll and also rolled another 1! That put me on one command point left.

That was foolish attacking Bjorn with the Patriarch. I was hoping to get the D3 points for No Prisoners by killing 3 units. I should have gone after the Razorback with the Patriarch and could maybe have killed it. Bjorn still would have been able to kill the Patriarch as he could have performed a heroic intervention, but at least I would have potentially scored a few more points for the loss of my warlord.

Space Wolves- 6 maelstrom points + 10 kill points + First Blood + Slay the Warlord = 18
Genestealer Cults- 8 maelstrom points + 6 kill points = 14

Turn 3 had turned this around. A great round of kills for Ben had put him in the lead by a few points.

In his fourth turn, Ben drew Assassinate (kill an enemy character), Defend Objective 1 and Domination (hold all the objectives).

Bjorn moved up on the unit of 6 Acolytes, while Ulric, Lucas and the Blood Claws moved up on another unit. The Wolf Guard moved up on the Genestealers, joined by the nearby Grey Hunters.

In the psychic phase, Njal cast Smite, taking a wound from the Scout Sentinel. He then cast Tempest on the Sentinel.

The Terminators fired on the Scout Sentinel, wounding it once. The Wolf Guard fired their Storm Bolters at the Acolyte squad in front of Bjorn, killing 5 with the Bolter shots.

The Blood Claws fired their Pistols at the Acolytes engaged with the Razorback, killing one of the squad. Bjorn fired his Flamer at the two remaining Acolytes in front of him, killing the both. He then fired his Cannon at the Sentinel, hitting and wounding (after a command point re-roll), but only causing one damage.

In the charge phase, Bjorn failed a 6" charge on the Magus. The Blood Claws, Ulric and Lucas charged the Acolytes. The Wolf Guard and Grey Hunters charged the Genestealers.

The Blood Claws struck at the Acolytes, killing 6 of the squad. Lucas the Trickster then attacked, killing off the rest of the unit.

I wish I had 2 command points to interrupt the combat and attack with my Genestealers! I shouldn't have wasted them on the re-roll for Supremacy last turn.

The Grey Hunters struck at the Genestealers, killing two of the squad. The Wolf Guard then attacked, killing another four of the squad.

The Genestealers struck back at the Grey Hunters, wiping out the unit.

At the end of his turn, Ben scored no points and discarded Domination. I also scored Defend Objective 5.

In my fourth turn, I drew Secure Objective 3, Secure Objective 4 and Defend Objective 4. Annoyingly, there was a big unit of Terminators on objective 4, making it impossible for me to get this turn.

The Magus and Scout Sentinel moved up on Bjorn. The Primus and Acolyte squad moved up on the Blood Claws.

In the psychic phase, the Magus cast Smite, taking three wounds from Bjorn and leaving him on 2 wounds.

In the shooting phase, the Scout Sentinel fired its Heavy Flamer at Bjorn, but caused no damage. The Acolytes fired at Lucas, wounding him once.

The Acolytes and Primus charged Lucas. The Primus struck, putting two wounds on the Trickster. The Acolytes were able to kill him with their attacks. Lucas still had a trick up his sleeve and detonated a grenade a point blank range, killing two of the Acolytes as he perished.

The Genestealers attacked the Razorback. I was hoping to wipe it out, but they only caused a single wound, leaving it on one. The Wolf Guard then wiped out the Genestealers in combat.

I though about charging Bjorn to try and kill him, but would most likely have lost the Magus and Sentinel while doing no damage to Bjorn.

At the end of my turn, I scored Secure Objective 3.

Space Wolves- 8 maelstrom points + 13 kill points + 3 Tertirary = 24
Genestealer Cults- 11 maelstrom points + 9 kill points + Linebreaker = 21

At this point, we ran out of time. However, it was likely the Space Wolves would table me in the following turn anyway, so I didn't feel so bad. A win for the Space Wolves.
End of the game.

Thanks to Ben for a fantastic game, it was a lot of fun and a very tactical game.

Things started off pretty well for the Cult. I was able to completely overwhelm the left flank, dealing with the Thunderwolves and Fenrisian Wolves and defending both objectives. This put me ahead on maelstrom points after the second turn.

After that, I struggled a bit. My first two rolls on the ambush table were great, getting a 5 and a 6, allowing me to charge the wolves. After that, I struggled to roll above a 4 on the ambush table. The worst was with the Patriarch and Acolytes on turn 2. Rolling 3 dice (2 for the stratagem and one for a command point re-roll), I was unable to roll above a 3. This forced the unit to deploy 12" away from enemy units and negated me a charge in that turn. Had the Patriarch been able to charge into combat, I would hoped to have eliminated one of the Space Wolf units and maybe caused a fair bit of damage with the Acolytes.

The Leman Russ did not perform as well in this game. It only really got one turn of firing and managed to do a fair bit of damage on one of the Razorbacks. After that, Ben was able to effectively take it out of the game thanks to a combination of shooting and psychic powers. I've never really bother with the Hunter-killer missiles on my vehicles, but Ben used them to great effect in this game. Between the Missile and the Cannon from Bjorn, he was able to take 11 wounds from the Russ with only 2 shots, effectively removing it from the game. His rolling was pretty poor to start with in the game, but got a lot better as the game went on. Had it gone another way, the Hunter-killer may have missed its shot or he could have rolled lower for the damage and the Russ might have survived to cause more wounds.

One thing that helped me a lot in this game was my deployment. I made sure to deploy my units in such a way that the Terminators and Wolf Guard could not "deep strike" behind my forces. This forced Ben to deploy the Terminators away to his left flank. Thanks to the slow speed of the Terminators, this pretty much took them out of the game. Njal was out of range for many of his powers on the main bulk of my force, Arjac and the Terminators never made it into combat, so were wasted in that regards. Over the course of the game, the Terminators killed two units of Neophytes and helped kill a Rockgrinder, not a great investment for their cost. Deploying them centrally might have given more impact on the game. However, had he done that, I probably would have sent the Rockgrinders and Aberrants after them and tried to take them out.

Overall, I think the game went well, even though I lost it. I think it was the kill points that lost me it in the end. Had the game just been maelstrom points, I would have a got a win from it. Even though we had roughly equal numbers of units, I think kill points is going to be tough for the Genestealer Cults. My unit are just too fragile and have little morale mitigation, so they disintegrate quite easily to enemy firepower.

I wonder if I should have brought all my units in on the first turn. I was saving a few to go after maelstrom points and for the chance to use more of the Uprising Stratagem. Perhaps overwhelming the Space Wolves and maybe getting a few more charges in would have helped me in the long run.

The Scout Sentinels worked well (when I remembered to shoot with them!). They were great for grabbing objectives and weren't too much of threat that they needed to be dealt with straight away. The Aberrants are pretty good too, but they are too easily killed for their points. I think they need either an extra wound each (to take them to 3) or some form of feel no pain save to make them a bit tougher for their points cost. The Hammers can do a lot of damage in combat, with each wound causing 3 damage a time. Maybe next time I will put them in Cult Ambush rather than on the Rockgrinder to get them into combat a bit sooner.

The Rockgrinder is ok. It is decent in combat but not great. Unfortunately, I don't have much options for Heavy Support, so if I want to fill the Brigade detachment, I need to take them over the more expensive Leman Russ.

This game was much better with the Cult. I am still learning how the army works at the moment. The shooting from it is practically negligible. I don't want to invest too heavily in Neophyte squads for more heavy weapons as the shooting is pretty basic. The units hit really hard in combat, but will quickly fall after that to enemy shooting or morale tests. I think the Brigade is the way to go, as the extra command points are very useful to the army, especially with the new stratagems. The purestrain genestealers are fantastic. I am thinking of adding another unit to the army for more close combat punch. I think dropping the Patriarch for another Primus to bring them in from ambush is a good way to go.

I hope you enjoyed the game. I will be getting a few more in in the coming months to test the army further. 


  1. Sounds like a cool game, makes me think a bit about what I need to fill out my own Cult. Looks like a Leman Russ and Rock Grinders will be on the shopping list as well as a third Sentinel.

    Just a note, your turn three you say you brought in a 10 man and a 5 man squad of Aberrants, did you mean Acolytes?

    1. Yes Dave, I did mean Acolytes. Would have loved another 15 Aberrants in the list though!

      The Leman Russ didn't really get to shine in this game, but I can see the potential. If anything, it did act as a really good fire magnet.
      I'm unsure of the Rockgrinder at the moment. It has some decnet combat potential, but hitting on 5's does hinder it a little. I think the Cahce of Demo charges is a strong weapon choice, but it is rare that I will be that close to a target and not have the squad inside disembark and charge.

  2. Tough break, it looked rosy for you after the first couple of turns!

    More genestealers is always a good idea, though I'd hesitate at dropping the patriarch, he works so well with them in combination!

    1. Unfortunately, the Genestealer Cult just don't have the staying power to keep in the game long. You really need to hit your opponent hard and keep them on the back foot.

      For the Patriarch, the morale bonus for the Purestrains is good. The Primus can replicate the to hit bonuses of the Patriarch, but not the morale bonus.

  3. Looks like a great game. I've only been fortunate enough to play against GSC once and that was under 7th.

    1. I never had a chance to play with them in 7th edition. I had the army, but was too focused on my Deathwatch to get them painted up and on the table before the launch of 8th edition.

  4. Yay, game number 2 and already we can see your improvements. I bet you'll be crushing opponents in no time! I really thought you had this in the bag, too.

    GSC really are quite squishy, but can hit pretty hard. I really like the Patriarch, he's such a combat beast. I was surprised he didn't take down Bjorn. The Russ seemed to do decent, too, considering that he drew firepower away from your frailer units. Have you tried a rock drill yet? These are my absolute favorite weapon of the GSC, if not in 8th! Save a command point re-roll for it and you'll surely do a ton of damage to whatever you hit with it.

    Keep it up! Looking forward to the next one.

    1. Cheers Chris, I think I am starting to get a feel for the army now. Hopefully it will improve over time.

      I've taken the Rock Drill in both games. I can see the potential for it, but haven't seen its full effect in my games so far. The first one saw it kill a Harlequin Biker with its mortal wounds. In this game, the othe Acolytes were able to kill the Blood Claws before I got to strike with them.

      It was Bjorn's invulnerable save and high toughness that kept him safe from the Patriarch. He does a lot of damage, but wounding on 5's and invulnerable saves just shut him down unfortunately.

  5. The game looked well. A lot of nice photoes.

    Have you considered more primuses? They seem to be key for getting off amnushes. I also do not inow about the vehicles. A leman russ is good, but with so few big things it is hard to saturate heavy weapons.

    1. Thanks Vidar! I think adding another Primus is a great idea. Getting to roll 3 times on the table is a great boost, helping you get that vital 5 or 6 roll. I think I'll add a second to go with a second unit of Purestrains. There is little that will stand up to two units in assault.

    2. Yeah, I am starting to build some, and I think that is one of the clear streanghts of GSC. It is like a mini-package mirroring the swarmlord trick that regular nids pull off. With 2 groups your opponent is really pressed during deployment and movement through round 1 to 3. 8th edition is a bit 'deadly', units die left and right. No 4++ cover saves. The unit comming in and killing a unit can be very good. And then possibly consolidate unto something else. It will also make might from beyond much better, having a use turn 1 and good later on.

      I don't know what to do with the big boss. You want him near the purestrains.