**coded transmission - recipient Kaminoan 501st, Commissar Lord Vader**
Initial scouting reports suggest heavy rebel pressence in this area. Further to a confused attack during poor visibility conditions we have since encountered some determined resistance from forces of a chaotic though admirably implacable nature, followed by running battles with very odd creatures that seemed to just appear out of the trees themselves!
I formally request assistance from the scouting element of the 501st, specifically our ratters and mounted scout troopers. If some AT-STs can be spared for heavy support that would also be useful.
Thank you for any assistance you can spare my lord.
I will be running a 40k combat patrol doubles tournament at my local gaming group inPortsmouth (UK) on teh 28th May this year. The details are available here though it will be following the very successful Winds of War format established by Bracknell Forest Gamers.
Anyone who is interested feel free to ask me any questions you may have here, and other than that hope to hear from you soon with army list submissions :o)
So I went down to my local GW today as they had a special game on. It sounded fun. I got told they were gonna try to assemble a lot of flyers to assault a fixed position, to celebrate the release of the stormraven. I was interested - with 2 valkyries, 2 vendettas, 2 vultures a lightning and a thunderbolt, I was well placed to take part. No they say, just bring one flyer and one squad. It'll be kinda like a race. To take part you only need a squad and a transport, though naturally flyers have an advantage. Ok, so I packed a vendetta and my straken bomb into a case and wander down.
I get there, and there aren't all that many people there...
And it seems there's been a change of plan...
There will be a squad of grey knight paladins, controlled by a staff member, waiting for stormraven extraction. We count them as individual squads and score 1 point for killing each. There's also 3 points available for bagging the stormraven.
Arrayed around the table, we have;
Myself with straken and transport.
A kid with a guard squad, command section, sentinal, lone sniper (wtf?!?) and a death strike missile. he was putting his Stormlord on the table too but the staff member told him not to.
A kid with a termie squad in land raider and a dread
A kid with devastator squad, predator and dread
And another guy, with term squad and chaplain in land raider, and dev squad with rhino, and predator, and dread, and scout squad in land speeder storm.
Right, so slightly outgunned then... especially when they said we'd be allowed to shoot at each other, though no points were available for that...
Now as good as the save on those Paladins was, they were still subject to instant death. They were all dead before the Stormraven showed up. I was most annoyed that I wounded with a laspistol and a meltagun... he passed the save on the instant killing meltagun, and lost a wound to the laspistol. That wounded guy was then pegged when the deathstrike missile hit the building. So with the squad gone the scores were 2-2-1 for the kids. The large army had started shooting at the kids early on, (as well as giving me a taste of flamestorm) so we all pitched in on him in return. I pegged his landraider that had caused me some problems and his dread was eliminated.
The stormraven showed up first (by this point a dread knight had been added to the reinforcement pool, worth 2 points) and went for the guard player... which was really annoying for me, as my vendetta, being unable to shoot last turn, had turbo boosted down to the opposite end of the table. I'd have to turbo boost again next turn to have a hope of shooting it on the turn after, assuming it didn't move out of line of sight again. In the turn immediately after it's arrival, it was immobilised... so while a long way away at least I'd be able to head towards it confident it wouldn't fly away... unfortunately big armys termies were heading inexorably in the same direction...
The dread knight deep striked in next to Straken and fired at the remnants of his squad. Clever wound allocation saw me lose the last bodyguard and meltagun. So in my turn I charged. The dreadknight put all the attacks on Straken and his medic. 3 wounds were caused. Two of them eliminated the medic... the final one bounced off Strakens refractor field. As it is he was striking simultaneously regardless, and took three wounds off the monstrosity. The Eviscerator wielding priest took out the final wound.
With Straken isolated he ended up in a scrap with a dread, and they both died in a loving embrace...
So it all came to the Stormraven - could my vendetta blow it up before the thunder hammer termie got there... or should I nail the termy? Knowing I had a dev squad behind me that could easily peg me after nailing the termy I thought my best chance of winning was going for the stormraven. Over two turns of shooting (before the devs nailed me) I got three penetrating hits... I achieved nothing. Oh sure I took some weapons off, but that thing has so many it wasn't close to getting glanced to death. And in the race between the thunderhammer termy and the guard plasma pistol sergeant, the termy passed his inv saves to strike the stormraven down. Giving the other guy three points and the win.
It was a good laugh over all, and everyone had scored some points. The guard player had three men left, the other three of us were wiped out to a man, while the marine player who won still had a termy, a dev squad, a couple scouts and a pred. But I couldn't help but feel somewhat underprepared for the mission... if the other armies had been restricted to one unit one transport, I doubt the marine player would have made it across the field to the stormraven. It's easy to be reckless and turn on everyone when you have as many forces as the rest combined. If I'd brought my flyers, no squads just flyers, I feel I would have wiped the floor with him, and probably still have fielded less points than he did! The dissappointing aspect of the game for me was the sense of inevitability. Seeing how many points more he had than everyone else I felt certain he'd win from the start. The fact that he left it so late was almost a banana skin on his part, but it was still kinda inevitable. I don't like inevitable games, in either direction. I like fun, in the balance, games. And if you're gonna promise a day entitled "Flight of the Valkyries" then I'd like to not be the only guy with an airborne vehicle!!! I felt critically ill-prepared for the game I ended up playing. The only way it could have been worse is if they'd suddenly had an objective for a troops choice to grab... In the words of Bert from Tremors, "I feel I have been denied... CRITICAL... NEED TO KNOW... Information."
From the Fang are looking at hosting a tournament for UK bloggers. I'm giving it some thoguht, though the likely location is some distance from me so I may well be relying on the hospitality of a friend and fellow blogger if I wish to go... but here are the details so far. Worth keeping an eye on I think...
The commander of Alpha platoon watched his troops as they advanced, three squads setting up ahead of him behind cover as the other squads moved up on his right flank in a leapfrog manouver, covering each other as they scouted out the terrain around them. The storm clouds overhead made the afternoon so gloomy it was hard to see more than a hundred yards in front of you, though an ominous rumbling sound from the darkness implied the presence of armour.
"This place is supposed to be deserted" muttered commander Piett "Squads, illuminate the target"
The troopers took to this task with gusto, the tracer rounds from their autocannon briefly showing a vehicle before the billowing smoke concealed it once more.
"Well that's not supposed to be there" stated Piett "Send some more fire in that direction, to suppress whatever infantry is escorting it" The troopers continued to fire, with typical accuracy for them.
Return fire started to come from near the wreckage, the pinpricks of light as missiles were launched highlighting the enemy position briefly. The missiles flew wild, some causing casualties and some far from the troopers lines.
"Shoddy fire discipline" rued Piett "Rebellious scum perhaps? Though I do have scout reports of some primitive natives, but I doubt they are any threat to us... Have you still not got that vox working trooper? I'm trying to give orders here!"
As the storm intensified and lightning strikes started to batter the troopers positions, infantry started to emerge from the murky cover.
"Send forward the penal scum"
"Are you sure sir?" asked the vox trooper "I think I can see a flamer in that squad"
"Oh I see the flamer... but that's what those scum are for"
As the penal legion advanced on the unknown foe, they were for the most part roasted alive as not one but two flamers swept over them.
"Oh well" said Piett "No matter. Keep firing"
With a roar the mystery foe was in amongst the troops slashing and hacking all around them. Lesser troops may have fled from such a foe, but these troops know the price of failure and fought on. Sadly this bravery saw their comrades unable to get a clean line of fire at them, though a howl of pain that cut through the storm suggested their shooting into the darkness had had some effect. As the butchers bathed in blood and advanced on the final bastion of fire, Piett had but a moment to wonder what mad men were in these forests, before he was beaten down and left unconscious. The vox link finally crackled into life, just as a chainsword cut it's bearer in two.
Piett regained consciousness back at the bunker. The wounded had withdrawn and returned to sweep for survivors and found him then. Luckily there were still plenty of troops available to him, but as long as he was unaware what was in these forests he would be fighting blind. He needed the 501STs scout troops here asap, and would have to dispatch a signal to that effect. Just as soon as that damn vox was fixed...
This was quite a close game, and seemed to be heading for a draw. I made a bit of an error with my penal legion squad (I honestly only spotted the one flamer, and hoped their sacrifice would whittle down the squad enough that disciplined fire would finish them off - of course after two flamers the few that survived were butchered in combat without getting the chance to try to get some rending hits in) but what seemed to be worst for me was Leadership tests. My troops stubbornly refused to pass a single Leadership test for the orders (FRFSRF) until the fourth turn... by which point I only had one lasgun trooper left! So after failing three LD8 tests, I then had to take an Ld6 test to avoid falling back - something I wanted to fail so I could fire at the enemy assault unit. Nope, THAT one I pass. He beats me in my combat phase, ready to advance in his next turn. He charges a four man command squad, surely this time I'll get to shoot him on my turn. Nope, THEY hold firm as well. Irritating!
Admittedly I don't expect to do too well with this army in kill point missions, though I did reduce it to 4 for this game. I perhaps should have reduced it to three instead but I wanted a bit of flexibility with what I fired at. Of course with killing the razorback on turn 1 I had very little to trouble me so I ended up shooting at the same target most turns anyway, so should have gone for the 50 man blob. Oh well, you live and learn.
Here's the prototype for some speeder bikes i'm making. They're counts as rough riders. I still have a little green stuff work to tidy up the rider, make those spindly eldar arms and legs look a bit more human, but for the first one i'm fairly happy with it :-)
Yes, you know who I mean. Marbo! The man who can just be there right next to the enemy all game and they won't realise until he gives them a demolition charge shaped suppository...
Trouble is, he's so good at this hiding malarkey, I've been unable to find him since they reintroduced him to the codex. I knew I had the model from my early days as a Catachan player, but couldn't find it anywhere. Have been using a Catachan Devil Ambush Squad leader to represent him for ages now. Today however, I finally found him! Lurking in a box of Tomb King stuff of all places! So hopefully get him painted up soon and start using the real model for a change.
Also on my hunt I found some guardsmen bits that I'd just this morning ordered off ebay (Gah, waste!) another plasmagun (handy) and some old commissars I bought off a mate.
Naturally, the thing I was actually looking for, my Steel Legion Commissar with rebreather, that I picked up years ago and am finally doing the project I originally envisaged him being a part of... he's nowhere to be bloody seen is he?!? Sods law.
Anyway, back to the bitz. I'm hoping if I start looking for, I don't know, some spare Ork stuff, then my Commissar may show up! :oP