Wednesday, 11 March 2020

NEO Tournament Battle Report: Game 3- White Scars vs Raven Guard

Game three of the North East Open tournament would see my White Scars take on Calum's Raven Guard in this ITC battle report. We would be playing ITC mission 3, with Hammer and Anvil deployment. 

My army consisted of:
Battalion Detachment
Captain on Bike- Twin Bolter, Thunder Hammer, Storm Shield, Master of Snares, Wrath of the Heavens
Librarian- Jump Pack, Force Stave, Mantle of the Stormseer, Ride the Winds, Storm-wreathed
5 Intercessors- Bolt Rifles, Bolt Pistols
5 Intercessors- Bolt Rifles, Bolt Pistols
5 Intercessors- Bolt Rifles, Bolt Pistols
3 Eliminators- Bolt Sniper Rifles, Camo Cloaks
3 Devastator Centurions- Grav-cannons and grav-amps, Hurricane Bolters

Battalion Detachment
Captain- Jump Pack, Master Crafted Thunder Hammer, Storm Shield, Chapter Master, Imperium's Sword
Lieutenant- Jump Pack, Power Axe, MC Bolter
5 Scouts- Bolters
5 Scouts- Bolters
5 Scouts- Bolt Pistol, Combat Knives
3 Inceptors- Assault Bolters
3 Inceptors- Assault Bolters

Battalion Detachment
Chaplain- Jump Pack, Crozius Arcanum, Bolt Pistol, Litany of Hate
Khan on Bike- Khan's Spear
5 Infiltrators- Marksman Bolt Carbines, Smoke Grenades
5 Infiltrators- Marksman Bolt Carbines, Smoke Grenades
5 Tactical Marines- Bolters
Thunderfire Cannon- Techmarine Gunner with Flamer, Plasma Cutter, 2 Servo-arms

Calum's army consisted of:
Battalion Detachment
Captain- Jump Pack, Storm Shield, Thunder Hammer
Lias Issodon
5 Scouts- Sniper Rifles
5 Scouts- Sniper Rifles
5 Scouts- Sniper Rifles
6 Aggressors- Auto Boltstorm Gauntlets, Fragstorm Grenade Launchers
5 Assault Centurions- 2 Flamers each, hurricane Bolters, Seige Drills
5 Centurion Devastators- Grav-cannons and grav-amps, hurricane Bolters
Thunderfire Cannon- Techmarine Gunner with Flamer, Plasma Cutter, 2 Servo-arms
Thunderfire Cannon- Techmarine Gunner with Flamer, Plasma Cutter, 2 Servo-arms

Battalion Detachment
Captain in Phobos Armour- Camo cloak, Master-crafted Instigator Bolt Carbine, Ex Tenebris
Chaplain- Jump Pack, Litany of Hate, Canticle of Hate, Storm Bolter
5 Intercessors- Stalker Bolt Rifles
5 Intercessors- Stalker Bolt Rifles
5 Scouts- Sniper Rifles
3 Eliminators- Bolt Sniper Rifles

Chapter Tactics- Long-range Marksmen, Master Artisans, Raptors

A standard Raven Guard force with a lot of infiltrating elements, thanks to Lias Issodon. The Centurions could do a lot of damage, and there were a lot of snipers to try and take on my characters. They had a good level of shooting for taking on my army, as well as some combat ability with the characters, Aggressors and Centurions.

For secondaries, I chose Behind Enemy Lines, Engineers (Tactical Squad and Intercessors) and Gangbusters. Calum chose Gangbusters, Behind Enemy Lines and Headhunter.

We rolled off to start the game. Calum won and chose the Defender. He then rolled off for deployment zone and chose hammer and anvil. We placed the objectives as shown below:

I then deployed my forces. I put the Thunderfire Cannon, Intercessors and Chapter Master in the central ruins on the objective. I put a unit of Infiltators in the ruins to the left to screen the objective, and a unit of Intercessors in the back left and the Tactical Squad on the back right to screen from the Raven Guard reserves.
The other characters deployed on the line to advance on the enemy army. I put the infiltrating units on the right flank, ready to grab the objective, or move up on the ruins in front of them for cover. The Eliminators went in the big square ruins in front of my deployment zone. I put one unit of Scouts on the left, ready to advance behind the ruins, to stay there and score Behind Enemy Lines. I put the Inceptors, Centurions and a unit of Intercessors in reserve.

Calum deployed his Eliminators and Phobos Captain in his own square ruins. The two Thunderfires and a squad of Intercessors went in the ruins in his backfield. He deployed the bulk of his forces on his left; the Aggressors, Scouts, Intercessors, Captain and Chaplain taking cover. He put Lias and three Sniper Scout squads in reserves using Lias' ability, and put the Assault and Devastator Centurions in reserve using the stratagem.

My plan was to go up the right flank, taking on the Raven Guard in the ruins. From there, I could spring onto the Thunderfire Cannons. I was hoping that by going first, I could screen out his Centurions and other reserves, pushing up and forcing them back.

I took the first turn and there was no seize the initiative.

In the first turn, I used the Canticle of Hate, passing with a CP re-roll. Calum's Litany of Hate failed.

The Scouts on the left advanced behind the cover of the building. On the right, the Infiltrators and Scouts moved up on the enemy forces. The Captain, Lieutenant, Chaplain and Librarian advanced towards the Aggressors.

The Librarian cast Storm-wreathed on the Biker Captain, and Ride the Winds on the Khan.

In the shooting phase, the Scouts fired on the enemy Scouts, doing no damage. The Thunderfire Cannon added its firepower, doing 6 wounds, but Calum made 5 of out six 5+ saves, so only one Scout perished. The Infiltrators put one wound on the Aggressors. The Eliminators fired at the enemy Eliminators, killing one of the squad.

In the charge phase, the Captain assaulted the Aggressors, joined by the Khan and Scouts. The combat Scouts charged the Raven Guard Scouts. The Raven Guard Captain heroically intervened into the squad.

The Biker Captain struck, doing four wounds with a CP re-roll and killing three. The Khan then attacked, doing five wounds and wiping out the squad. The Scouts attacked the enemy Sniper Scouts, doing 14 hits, but only 3 wounds, but did manage to kill three of the squad.

The Raven Guard Captain then attacked, killing three of the White Scars Scouts.

At the end of the turn, I scored hold 1, kill 1, Behind Enemy Lines (1/4) and Gangbusters (3/4). I should have advanced the Infiltrators onto the objective to score the bonus point this turn for holding the two objectives outside of the deployment zone.


The Captain fell back towards the enemy characters, spending 2CP on a stratagem to allow him to charge. The Chaplain moved up to support him.

In the shooting phase, the Captain and Chaplain threw Krak grenades at the White Scars Chaplain, putting two wounds on him. The Eliminators did one wound on him as well.

The two Intercessor Squads fired on the Infiltrators, killing two of the squad. The Phobos Captain added his firepower, getting three hits but no wounds! The Thunderfire Cannons added their firepower, killing two more to leave one remaining on the objective.

In the charge phase, the Captain assaulted the Lieutenant and Librarian, while the Chaplain assaulted the lone Infiltrators. The Intercessors charged the squad of White Scars Scouts. The Khan then heroically intervened into the lone Raven Guard Scout. I then heroically intervened with the Lieutenant to get into base contact with the Captain. This would stop the Captain from piling in to the Librarian and killing him in the fight phase.

The Captain struck down the Lieutenant for his impudence. The Chaplain managed two wounds on the lone Infiltrator, but I made my saves. The Intercessors were able to kill four of the White Scars Scouts, wrapping the survivor in combat. The Khan was able to cut down the last Scout.

At the end of his turn, Calum scored Headhunter (1/4), hold 1 and kill 1. I scored hold more and we drew for number of kills.

White Scars- 7
Raven Guard- 3

A great start for the White Scars. I had taken out the Aggressors and made great pushes into the enemy deployment zone. If I could keep up the momentum, I could increase my score even further in the next turn.

 I passed my Litany of Hate with a CP re-roll. We both moved on to the Tactical Doctrine.

The Librarian and Chaplain advanced towards the Intercessors, as the Infiltrator fell back to join them. The Biker Captain advanced towards the Thunderfire Cannons.

At the end of the phase, I brought in some reserves. The Centurions and Inceptor Squad landed near the Biker Captain to target the Raven Guard forces.

The Chaplain cast Ride the Winds on the Infiltrators, then cast Smite, killing one enemy Intercessor.

In the shooting phase, the Centurions fired at the Intercessors and Thunderfire Cannon, killing the Cannon and doing 5 wounds on the squad. The Inceptors added their firepower, wiping them out.

The Eliminators fired at the enemy Chaplain, doing 3 wounds, but failing to get past his armour. The Thundefire Cannon fired at the Eliminators, wounding them once.

In the charge phase, the Captain charged the Techmarines and surviving Thunderfire Cannon, the Inceptors joining him in the charge, while the Centurions failed the charge.

The Khan, Chaplain, Librarian, Infiltrator and lone Scout charged the Raven Guard Intercessors.

The Khan cut down the Intercessors in combat. The Biker Captain managed to kill a Techmarine, while the Inceptors did no harm to the other Techmarine. In reply, his Servo-arm cut down one of the Inceptors.

At the end of my turn, I scored hold 1, kill 1, Behind Enemy lines (for 2 points, 3/4) and Engineers (1/4).


The Captain's Master of Snares ability stopped the Thunderfire Cannon from falling back. However, the Techmarine was able to fall back, destroying the Cannon in the process.

The Captain and Chaplain moved up on the White Scars in the nearby ruins. At the end of the phase, the reserves came in. The Centurion Devastators landed in the central ruin, while the Assault Centurions landed on the objective on the right flank. Lias and the Scouts came in on the left flank, up on the building near the enemy deployment zone.

The Snipers fired at the Chapter Master. Unfortunately, I had left a sliver of his Jump Pack in view of them, so he could be targeted. The two squads managed to do four mortal wounds, leaving him on a single wound. The third squad did a single wound. I failed my 2+ cover save, even with a CP re-roll and he was slain. Their other fire was able to kill the lone Infiltrator in the ruins opposite them.

The Chaplain and Captain threw grenades at the Librarian, but failed to do any damage. The Eliminators fired at the Chaplain, killing him.

Calum used Gravitic Amplification on the Devastator Centurions, who targeted the enemy Centurions and Inceptors, killing both squads. The Assault Centurions fired at the Eliminators, killing them.

In the charge phase, the Assault Centurions attempted to charge the Scouts, failing and taking a wound in overwatch. The Chaplain and Captain charged the Khan and Librarian.

The Chaplain struck at the Librarian, killing him. I spent 2CP to interrupt and attacked the Captain with the Khan. He put four wounds on the Captain. Calum failed two wounds. I rolled for damage and got a 3 and a 1, leaving him on one wound. I used a CP re-roll on the 1 damage and rolled another 1!

The Captain struck at the Khan, killing him. I spent 2 more CP to fight in death. The Khan did 5 hits, but only a single wound on a 4+, which bounced off the Captain's Storm Shield, leaving him alive.

At the end of the turn, Calum scored Hold 1, kill 1, hold more, kill more, Headhunter (for 3 points, 4/4), Behind Enemy Lines (for 2 points, 2/4) and Gangbusters (for 3 points, 3/4).

White Scars- 12
Raven Guard- 15

An incredible turn for the Raven Guard had turned the game around. Calum spent about 20 minutes on his movement phase alone, and I can see why. Losing the Chapter Master to the snipers was a big blow, as I hadn't moved him out of line of sight, same with the Chaplain. Failing to kill the Captain with the Khan was also a big blow. I was going to have to do a lot to bring this one round.

In the third turn, I moved to the Assault Doctrine.

The Tactical Squad moved up on the Scouts, while on the other flank, the Infiltrators advanced onto the objective. The Biker Captain advanced towards the central ruins, and the nearby Scouts moved around the edge of the building. The lone Scout advanced towards the other objective.

At the end of the phase, the Intercessors arrived to hold a central objective, while the Inceptors landed near the Scouts.

The Inceptors fired at the Scouts, killing the unit. The Thunderfire fired twice at the two Scout units, killing three from one and two from another. The Intercessors fired at the Raven Guard Captain, only managing four hits and not a single wound.

In the charge phase, the Biker Captain assaulted the Centurions, while the Tactical Squad charged the Scouts.

The Captain struck at the Centurions, only hitting twice and wounding twice, but Calum made a 6+ save and only one perished. The Tactical Squad attacked the Scouts, but only did 2 wounds after some horrendous rolling from me. Calum once more made a save and only one Scout died.

The attacks back from the Scouts did no damage. The Centurions managed to do 8 wounds on the Captain, but I made all my saves for once.

At the end of my turn, I scored hold 1, kill 1, Behind Enemy Lines (4/4), Engineers (2/4) and the bonus point.


The Master of Snares ability stopped the Centurions from falling back. The Assault Centurions moved up on the Infiltrators, while the Phobos Captain and Elminators moved down towards the Captain.

The Raven Guard Captain and Chaplain moved up on the Intercessors holding the objective.

The Assault Centurions fired at the Intercessors and Infiltrators. The Bolters of the squad killed two of the White Scars Intercessors, while the Infiltrators were obliterated by the flamers.

The Techmarine fired at the Intercessors and Scout, killing the Scout and one Intercessor. The Captain and Chaplain threw Krak grenades at the squad, killing one more. The Phobos Captain added his firepower, wiping out the unit.

Lias fired at the Inceptors, killing one of the squad. The Eliminators fired at my Techmarine, but failed to do any damage.

In the charge phase, Lias assaulted the Tactical Squad, while the Phobos Captain and Eliminators charged the Biker Captain.

Lias struck down two of the Tactical Squad. The Captain did 5 wounds on the Biker Captain, three of which got through his Storm Shield, even with a CP re-roll! The Eliminators were able to slay him.

The Tactical Squad struck at the Scouts. The squad of two were cut down. The lone Scout took a wound and made his armour save once more on a 5+.

At the end of his turn, Calum scored hold 1, kill 1, the objective bonus, hold more, kill more and Behind Enemy Lines (3/4).

White Scars- 17
Raven Guard- 21


The Inceptors moved up on Lias, while the Intercessors moved over to the flank to support them. The Tactical Squad fell back from combat with the Scout.

The Intercessors fired at the lone Scout, only doing a single wound, which was saved. The Inceptors fired at Lias, only doing 2 hits and no wounds! The Thunderfire Cannon targeted the Assault Centurions, doing one wound on them. I needed one more wound to get my final Gangbusters point, so needed to fire at them.

In the charge phase, the Inceptors charged Lias, while the Tactical Squad assaulted the Scout. The Tactical Squad cut down the Scout, consolidating into Lias. The Inceptors did no damage to Lias.

At the end of the turn, I scored hold 1, kill 1, Gangbusters (4/4) and Engineers (3/4).


The Eliminators and Phobos Captain moved back to target the Scouts in their backfield. They opened fire on the squad, killing three of them. The Centurions fired at the Intercessors, killing the squad.

In the fight phase, Lias was able to kill one more Inceptor to pick up his last Gangbusters point. The Inceptors and Tactical Squad hit 7 times and I did not manage to roll a single wound on a 4+!

At the end of his turn, Calum scored hold 1, kill 1, the objective bonus, hold more, Behind Enemy lines (4/4) and Gangbusters (4/4).

White Scars- 21
Raven Guard- 27

At this point, we ran out of time and the game ended. A win for the Raven Guard.

Thanks to Calum for a fun and tactical game. In all honesty, I thought I had won this game after my second turn, but Calum had a great second turn to steal the lead and win the game over all.

My plan started off really well. The Biker Captain and Khan were able to kill off the Aggressors, as well as getting several units into the enemy lines. I didn't charge the Raven Guard Captain and Chaplain with my squads, which was my first mistake. I might have been able to move into these two characters to stop them from falling back and going after my forces.

I should have also moved the Infiltrators up on the objective on the left hand side. This would have scored me the bonus on turn 1, indeed, I probably could have got this for several turns. This would have also helped to push back the deployment for the Assault Centurions, making it harder for them to get to the objective for the bonus, or to target my backfield forces. This simple act of advancing one unit on the objective in my first turn probably cost me the game.

After my second turn, I was 9 points ahead and feeling really good about the game. However, I made some mistakes with my reserves and charges on turn 2 which really cost me.

There was absolutely no need to bring in the Devastator Centurions and Inceptors in my second turn. Their firepower took out a Thunderfire Cannon and an Intercessor squad, which wasn't really necessary for me to win the game. Also, when charging the Biker Captain, I should have placed his base sideways to contact both Techmarines and the Thunderfire Cannon. This could potentially have stopped them from falling back in my turn, keeping my Biker Captain in combat to kill the other Techmarine.

What I should have done is bring in the unit of Intercessors in place of the Devastator Centurions. This would have pushed Calum's Centurions back to the central ruin for deployment. He would have been able to kill the Intercessors no problem, but then I could have brought in my Centurions and Inceptors to target his Grav Centurions and hopefully kill them with the firepower and combat ability of my Biker Captain.

Had Calum held back his own squads of Centurions till turn 3 when I had deployed mine, I could have pushed them away further from my key units. Even if I couldn't, he wouldn't be bringing on these key units till turn 3 of a 4 turn game. Annoyingly, a couple of these mistakes cost me the game.

I also wasn't careful with my character positioning in this game, which is really stupid against Raven Guard. I should have made sure my Chapter Master and Chaplain were not in line of sight on turn 2 when the reserves came in. The +1 to hit and to wound against characters was great for the snipers, allowing them to do mortal wounds on a 5+. Had the Chapter Master survived, he could have gone after the Scouts or Assault Centurions, putting a lot of damage on either squad. Against the Assault Centurions, he would have had 6 attacks with full re-rolls, wounding on a 2+ and doing 5 damage per wound. I think I would have good odds of wiping the squad or severely reducing their numbers if I was able to charge out of line of sight to avoid the overwatch.

After my second turn, the dice turned on me hard! In Calum's second turn, my two CP re-rolls of a 1 came up as a 1 again (the armour save on the Chapter Master and damage roll on the Khan). My hit rolls and wound rolls for the rest of my units were equally horrendous, as I struggled to do any damage to the Raven Guard. The Biker Captain in turn 3 was also a killer. Of my 5 attacks on the charge, I rolled a triple 2 to only get 2 hits. Also in turn 3, the Intercessors fired 10 shots at the Captain, got only 4 hits on a 3+ and not a single wound on a 4+!

I'm not saying it lost me the game, but it certainly didn't help matters, as I struggled to take out the enemy units for blocking Behind Enemy Lines or hurting the characters and squads.

The game timings were as follows:
Deployment- 30 mins
WS Turn 1- 18 mins
RG Turn 1- 22 mins
WS Turn 2- 20 mins
RG Turn 2- 35 mins
WS Turn 3- 20 mins
RG Turn 3- 13 mins
WS Turn 4- 4 mins
RG Turn 4- 4 mins

WS Total- 77 mins
RG Total- 89 mins

I think had the game gone on, it wouldn't have made much difference. I would have scored my last engineers point, but would have struggled to get a kill or the objective bonus.

So, I ended the first day on two wins and a loss. I was interested to see who I would be facing in my next game. 


  1. Great write-up Mikey! Was a great game and learned a bit from it, mostly that I have to speed up! ��

    1. Glad you enjoyed it Calum! Don't worry, it wasn't just you. None of my games went past turn 4 on day 1. Oddly, I got to turn 6 in both my final games. It really just depends on how the game is going.

  2. Ooh I like see-saw games, you certainly looked unstoppable on Turn 2 then the As Cents and Dev Cents landed and BLAM! Thanks for the write up, great reading Batreps to rather than always YT 2hr vids. Both have their place.

    1. It was definitely a very see-saw kind of game. Annoyingly, looking back I can see how I could have won the game. Those are always the worst ones, where you can see where you went wrong and how you could have fixed it to win the game.