Friday, June 25, 2010

Scorched Earth

I gave a report on two of the last three games I played. Now for a quick rundown of the final game.

Since we'd already done Pillage, we rolled off between Black Crusade and Scorched Earth. with the result coming up in favor of burning. We played the game at 1500 points and I was the attacker.

My list: Abaddon, a squad of thousand sons, a squad of marines, a squad of chosen with plasma guns in a rhino, 6 lesser demons, a defiler and a possessed land raider.

Opposing side: Abaddon, Slaanesh demon prince with lash, a squad of berserkers, a squad of plague marines in a rhino, a defiler, a land raider, and 3 obliterators.

So it was a fight between two of Abaddon's clones on a blasted and burning battlefield. We placed three objectives then rolled for all the terrain to see what was on fire. Most things came up as smoking, but a few came up burning turning the ground surrounding one objective into dangerous terrain.

I opened cautiosly, moving my defiler into a firing solution on his plague marine rhino, and between it and the land raider managing to stun it. My thousand sons slogged it out of my deployment zone on their way to one of the objectives. For his part, my opponent adjusted positioning and moved the prince up to lash the thousand sons into close combat. No shots were fired, my opponent forgetting that all area terrain blocked line of sight through it. The prince took a couple of wounds and killed a few thousand sons and all remained locked in combat.

Second turn brought a concentrated effort by both parties to put some hurt down. My land raider moved for a firing position on the plague marine rhino, this time destroying it, while the defiler moved close to an objective but failed to hurt anything. The thousand sons took a couple wounds but the sorceror with force weapon finished off the prince, freeing them from close combat. They may not seem like much on paper, but thousand sons are brutal in close combat versus anyone who expects to be ignoring armor saves.

Third turn it was time to stop jockeying and get to grips. My Abaddon's land raider plowed to the center of the table. Abaddon jumped out and along with my defiler piled onto his defiler. My defiler exploded and his lost an arm and got stunned. His plague marines jumped out and started making their way to the same objective as my thousand sons. A showdown was brewing there. In his close combat phase Abaddon brought down the defiler, which exploded and put a wound on Abaddon.

Fourth turn. My Abaddon charged into his obliterators, killing two. My lesser demons warped in and ran towards a far objective and the chosen came in on their rhino and poured some fire into the plague marines who were now trapped between the thousand sons and my chosen. Not that they were worried, they just charged the thousand sons, killing a couple more. In the center the opposing Abaddon jumped out of his land raider and came after my Abaddon. There could be only one. Both Abaddons pounded away at each other, but nothing was decided.

Until the fifth turn, when my Abaddon went down under a savage flurry of blows. My lesser demons consolidated their objective and my chosen charged in to help the thousand sons. Both my squads were ineffective, however, with the plague marines winning combat, the chosen running away and the thousand sons losing one more man to fearless armor saves. The bottom of the turn saw my opponent's land raider moving up, immobilizing my land raider, but not quite getting close enough that he could disgorge the berserkers to contest the objective being held by my lesser demons.

With a roll of the dice the game was over with a win for me, although if it had gone on any longer I would have been hard pressed to retain ownership of the objectives I was holding.

The mission played out a lot better than I thought it would. I'm personally a bit critical of the Battle Missions book since most of the missions are extremely subtle tweaks to the game. In this case, making all the area terrain block line of sight through it made the game feel very much like fourth edition again. We were both cat and mousing around behind area terrain, using ruins and forests to our advantage. Very fun!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Kill Teams and Battle Missions

A buddy and I played a few scenarios from the Battle Missions book recently. I know that battle missions is pretty much old news at this point, but I wanted to give my impression after actually having played.

We both brought our chaos armies for the evening. Starting off with Kill Teams we plunked our minis down and went at it. I brought a handful of chaos marines with a rhino and an icon, and threw in another handful of summoned lesser demons. On the opposing side was a squad of plague marines with a plasma gun and melta gun.

I was pretty brutally mauled in this game. I managed to keep my guys shooting, and got some two vs. one assaults but in the end the survivability of the plague marines was my downfall. Because Kill Teams is lost by having half your army destroyed, I was banking on having a healthy number of models. Turns out eleven is still not a healthy number. I would have been better off bringing a few special weapons so I could capitalize on the instances where I had a clear shot on one of his guys. In a scenario that revolves around whittling your opponent away, I just wasn't survivable or killy enough.

Fun game though. It played a bit like War Machine without the casters. Very few units moving around and everyone counts.

Next game we played 500 points and since we were both Chaos, we diced off to see who would be the attacker and then rolled a d3 to pick a chaos mission from the book. I came up as defender on the Pillage Mission.

Our army lists started off similarly. We both had flying daemon princes with the mark of Khorne. Demon princes fulfill a lot of roles in a low point game and the khorne prince is one of the cheapest. Following his prince, my opponent had a squad of plague marines and a unit of berserkers in a rhino. My prince brought along two small squads of chaos marines, one on foot and one with a plasma gun in a rhino. Also a defiler.

The game started slow with his berserkers moving up and his plague marines camping the objective closest to his deployment zone in order to rack up some early VPs. His prince moved towards the center where he'd be able to support his flanks. For my part I moved my rhino up a bit and a hail of bolter fire and a couple of well placed plasma shots took out a good chunk of the plague marine squad. The other space marine squad assaulted the berserker's rhino, planting krak grenades and stunning it.

Continuing on the plague marines stood steady on their objective, ensuring more points. The opposing khorne prince bopped over to tear the tracks off my rhino, while his berserkers piled out and attacked my demon prince, putting two wounds on him but losing most of their number in return. On my turn the defiler showed up and tried to fleet close enough to the berserker rhino that it would be able to use it to get some extra movement on the charge but fell just short. The chaos marines piled out of their soon to be destroyed rhino and put some rounds into the demon prince causing a couple of wounds.

The rest of the battle was simply a series of moves and counter moves. The defiler moved onto my objective with the chaos marines surrounding it for protection. His demon prince killed the chaos marines with the plasma gun. My demon prince killed his plague marines. The culmination of the battle was his demon prince bellowing to khorne and assaulting mine. They pummeled each other across two rounds of combat until they simultaneously sent each other back to the warp.

With his entire army gone the final result was a victory for me.