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King of the Hill

King of the Hill: Battle #4 by Kenton Kilgore and Patrick Eibel

This, our latest campaign, will pit several armies from the most recent codices against each other to provide some sort of comparison on how well they perform.  Here’s how they’ve done so far:


  • Battle #1: Chaos Space Marines defeated Space Marines (Ultramarine Tactics)
  • Battle #2: Space Marines (Ultramarine Tactics) defeated Tyranids
  • Battle #3: Eldar defeated Tyranids

For the next fight, we’ll see how Pat’s Eldar fare against my Chaos Space Marines.    


Eldar (1994 points) by Patrick Eibel

I have split my Eldar army into three groups: a “foot” group of mostly infantry, a “mech” group of mostly Wave Serpent-borne units, and an Iyandan-style list with mostly Wraith units.  Since I am not using the Iyandan supplement, I have taken to calling this my “Wraiths and Riders” list.  Here is what I brought:


  • Spiritseer w/ Shard of Anaris.  Warlord trait was Ambush of Blades (re-roll 1s “to wound”); psychic powers were Dominate and Terrify
  • Warlock Council of 2 Warlocks w/ jetbikes and singing spears, both w/ Conceal psychic power
  • Wraithguard Squad “Kemen.”  5 Wraithguard w/ wraithcannons.  Wave Serpent Transport w/ twin-linked multi-laser and hull-mounted shuriken cannon
  • Wraithguard Squad “Wai’wa.”  5 Wraithguard w/ wraithcannons.  Wave Serpent Transport w/ twin-linked multi-laser and hull-mounted shuriken cannon
  • Wraithguard Squad “Uru’uva.”  5 Wraithguard w/ D-scythes.  Wave Serpent Transport w/ twin-linked multi-laser and hull-mounted shuriken cannon
  • Jetbike Squad “A’are.”  6 Jetbikes, including one w/ shuriken cannon
  • Jetbike Squad “Isilme.”  6 Jetbikes, including one w/ shuriken cannon
  • Vyper “Arya” w/ shuriken cannon
  • Vyper “M’ore” w/ shuriken cannon
  • Wraithlord “Y’ara” w/ brightlance, flamer, glaive
  • Wraithlord “Iswa” w/ brightlance, flamer, glaive
  • Wraithknight “Ra’umo” w/ heavy wraithcannons


This list has three elements: the Serpents with the Wraithguard (the Spiritseer joins Wraithguard squad Uru’uva); the Jetbikes and Vypers (the Warlocks join each Jetbike Squad, respectively); and the Wraithlords and Wraithknight.  My nominal plan was to have the Serpents go left, the Jetbikes go right, and the big boys waddle up the middle.

Fearful Symmetry (1988 points) by Kenton Kilgore

Similar to what I’ve been doing with my other armies, I’ve recently split up my collection of Renegades into two lists, the one below being the more “shooty”:


  • Shamshir Talatra.  Counts as Chaos Lord w/ Terminator armor, combi-bolter, Mark of Khorne, Axe of Blind Fury, combat familiar
  • Greater Rakshasas.  Counts as 7 Terminators w/ power swords; 6 have combi-meltas; 1 has heavy flamer
  • Ghost Tyger Pack 1.  Counts as 5 Terminators w/ power fists and combi-meltas
  • Ghost Tyger Pack 2.  Counts as 5 Terminators w/ power fists and combi-meltas
  • Squad Rudra 1.  Counts as 10 Chaos Space Marines, including one w/ flamer, one w/ heavy bolter, and Aspiring Champion w/ combi-melta
  • Squad Rudra 2.  Counts as 10 Chaos Space Marines, including one w/ melta gun, one w/ heavy bolter, and Aspiring Champion w/ power fist and combi-flamer
  • Squad Rudra 3.  Counts as 10 Chaos Space Marines, including one w/ melta gun, one w/ missile launcher, and Aspiring Champion w/ combi-flamer
  • Squad Rudra 5.  Counts as 5 Chaos Space Marines, including one w/ plasma gun
  • Squad Agni.  Counts as 5 Chaos Havocs, including four w/ lascannons
  • Bronze Tyger 1.  Counts as Forgefiend w/ two hades autocannons
  • Bronze Tyger 2.  Counts as Forgefiend w/ two hades autocannons

The Fearful Symmetry is a themed army whose backbone formerly was lots and lots of Chaos Daemons.  Now that Daemons have been taken out of the CSM codex, I’ve been experimenting with various reconfigurations, as I’m not about to drop stupid amounts of money on the Chaos Daemon book just so that I can use them as Allies for an army that I play maybe once or twice a year.   


Previously, I’ve used my “Ghost Tygers” as Warp Talons, but they did not impress me, so today I’ll treat them as Chaos Terminators and see if they can slow down the Wave Serpents and Wraithguard that I’m expecting Pat to bring.  I goofed the math and wound up 12 points short, something I’ll need to adjust for next time.



Following the rules of the campaign, we played this game at Pat’s house, because he had won the previous one.  Our table was a 4' x 6' desert scene with hills and flora.  We rolled randomly for mission and deployment, coming up with The Scouring and Hammer & Anvil Deployment, with Night Fighting on Turn 1 only. 


Rolling for Warlord Traits out of our respective codices, I came up with Lord of Terror for Shamshir, and Pat got Ambush of Blades for his Spiritseer.


As Pat had set up the table, I chose what side I wanted (per our custom), and following the mission parameters, we deployed the 6 objectives (remembering this time that they would be Mysterious—oooh! Spooky!).  The objectives were:


1: Skyfire Nexus
2 (orange): Skyfire Nexus
2 (red): Targeting Relay
3 (orange): Sabotaged!
3 (blue): Grav Wave Generator
4: Nothing of Note 


Rolling off, we found that I would be deploying and going first.  I positioned Rudra Squads 1 and 3 to go after the three-point objectives that were in “no-man’s land,” while Squads 2 and 5 held the two-point objectives in my deployment zone.  Havocs waited in the tall building, using Squad 2 as cover, the Bronze Tygers/Forgefiends took cover near the back of my zone, and Shamshir and the Terminators were in reserve.


Pat lined up his Wave Serpents (each carrying a squad of Wraithguard) on his left flank, with Wraithlords and the ‘Knight in the center, Vypers on the right, and Jetbikes in the rear.  With that, we were off to the races….


Turn 1

At the beginning of my first turn, I moved Rudra 1 and 3 towards the three-point objectives.  The sabotaged objective kersploded, killing one of my guys.  The Havocs took two Wounds off the nearest Wraithlord, and the Forgefiends were out of range (thanks to Night Fighting) to finish off the target.  Nertz!


On his turn, Pat advanced all of his force, and I was mortified to learn that the Wraithknight is a Jump Monstrous Creature.  I had a flashback to 1st Edition “Rogue Trader” and its Dreadnoughts with jump packs (yes, kids, once upon a time, you could give have those). 


Fortunately, Mr. Retroknight didn’t seem to be that good a shot, as his efforts against the closest Forgefiend came up with a “1” and a “2” on the “to hit” dice.  My clever plan to paint my sucktastic Communist Orange Tiger Dice ™ and mix them in with Pat’s collection was working perfectly. 


More successful for Pat was his effort to target Rudra 3, who lost three of their number (including the fellow with the missile launcher) to the Vypers and Jetbikes.  On the other end of the battle, the Wave Serpents combined their fire to take out 5 of 10 members of Rudra 1.  Nasty!


Turn 2

Rolling for Reserves, both units of Ghost Tygers (counting as Chaos Terminators) appeared behind the Eldar lines.  Rudra 1 and 3 persisted forward, taking their objectives.  Shooting from the Ghost Tygers stunned and immobilized one Wave Serpent (also knocking 2 Hull Points off it), and exploded another, killing one Wraithguard aboard and stunning the surviving passengers.


Elsewhere, I concentrated almost all firepower on the Wraithknight: one cannot have such a fellow hopping about indiscriminately in one’s backyard.  Rudra 3’s melta gun missed—such is the nature of single melta guns, n’est-ce pas?  However the Bronze Tygers/Forgefiends knocked two Wounds off him, and the Havocs’ lascannons took down three more.  Rudra 2 spared some love for one of Pat’s Vypers, forcing it to jink. 


Speaking of Vypers, they and the Jetbikes did an about-face to deal with the Ghost Tygers, as did the lone non-stunned squad of Wraithguard, getting out of their ride.  All of them poured fire into the Ghost Tygers until all 10 proxied Termies in both squads were gone. 


Meanwhile, the Wraithknight again bricked its “to-hit” rolls against the Forgefiends, with two “1’s.”  Wraithlord firing remained none too impressive, taking out a single Marine from Rudra 3.  



Turn 3

I had needed Shamshir and his Terminators to have shown up last turn, alongside the others, but that was probably too much to hope for.  Instead, he and his pals showed up this turn, attempting to bamf in behind a big clump of Jetbikes so as to wreck their [poop].  Alas, the scatter die was against me, and he and his chums deviated right onto said Jetbikes.  Rolling to see what would happen, I came up with “Terrible Mishap,” and just like that, 424 points—including my Warlord—went down the crapper.


Well, that was…lovely.  Soldiering on as if I had intended to spot Pat a 400-point advantage, I kept firing at the Wraithknight, dropping him thanks to the Bronze Tygers and their hades autocannons (Rudra 3’s melta gun missed again because OF COURSE it would).  My Havocs fired on a Wave Serpent, wrecking it, and Rudra 1 shot dead a Wraithguard.

On Pat’s turn, his Wraithguard and Jetbikes advanced, one bunch of WGuard taking the 4-point objective.  The lone Wave Serpent fired at Rudra 1, killing three of them and forcing the last two to fall back 5”.  Vypers shot at Rudra 3, to no effect, and a Wraithlord targeted Rudra 3 as well, dropping one.


Turn 4

The two chaps from Rudra 1 kept falling back.  I directed all firing—and I mean ALL—at the Jetbikes, who were buffed to have Invulnerable saves.  All four Chaos Marine Squads, both Forgefiends, and the Havocs managed to drop exactly 5 Jetbikes.  Criminy! 


Pat’s Pointyheads continued to advance, Jetbikes polishing off Rudra 1 and 3, Vypers killing one from Rudra 2.  The Wave Serpent knocked a Hull Point off one of my Forgefiends.


Turn 5

Serving Pat right for killing my guys holding it, the sabotaged objective exploded, but his Jetbikes were ok.  Squads Rudra 2 and 5 fired on Jetbikes, to no effect (damn Concealed psychic power!), but a Bronze Tyger and Squad Agni dropped both Vypers, claiming me some Victory Points, as per the mission.  The other Forgefiend smacked a Hull Point off the Wave Serpent.


Keeping on with the keepin’ on, Pat’s Jetbikes killed four of five Chaos Space Marines from Rudra 5, while other Wraithguard ran towards a 3-point objective.  Wraithlords knocked another Hull Point off a Forgefiend, and the sabotaged objective exploded again, harming no Jetbikes.


Rolling to see if the game would continue, the Loyal Green Die ™ decreed that we would play on.


Turn 6

I was rapidly running out of bodies.  Rudra 2 and a Forgefiend fired at Jetbikes, but of course, none of them perished.  The other Bronze Tyger fired on the Wraithguard by the 3-point objective, killing two of them, and the Havocs finishing them off.  So there was that.


The Wraithguard in the Wave Serpent got out, claiming the 1-point objective that was in no-man’s land.  A Wraithlord fired at the wounded Forgefiend, finally wrecking it, and the Serpent fired on the other, knocking 2 Hull Points off.  Jetbikes finished off the last guy from Rudra 5 to make sure Team Spikey did not get that objective, either.


The Loyal Green Die ™ was greatly amused at my suffering, and it wanted Pat to kick me around for another turn.


Turn 7

However, it was my turn to kick Pat around...a bit.  Abiding by the precept that If You Make Them Take Enough Armor Saves, Eventually They’ll Die, I fired everything I had left (which wasn’t much) at Jetbikes on a 3-point objective, killing one—and then watching in astonished disbelief as they failed their Morale check and fell back A LOT (11").


On Pat’s turn, the suddenly-spooked ‘Bikes failed to rally, falling back another 10".  The other Jetbikes took the other 3-point objective, and with that, the game ended.


Final Score

Eldar: 9 (Slay the Warlord, Objectives)

Fearful Symmetry: 5 (First Blood, Fast Attack units, Objectives)


Post-Game Analysis by Patrick Eibel

From the outset of the battle, I was concerned that my army had three different speeds: Walker slow, Serpent medium, and Jetbike fast.  When the objectives were revealed, I lucked out that all of the big money items were on my half of the board.  My strategy was to grab the 4-point objective near my deployment zone and control the two 3-pointers that were close by at the end of the game.  Everything else was meant to keep Kenton’s army back and whittle him down. 


Things almost went off the rails when the Terminators beamed in behind my lines, but I got a massive gift when the command group had their mishap.  Some may question using the Wraithknight as a lightning rod, but his terrible shooting wasn’t adding much anyway, and it kept Kenton from firing at the rest of the army for a couple of rounds. 


The Wraith units all pretty much underperformed.  Fortunately, Jetbikes with Conceal are a real beast to deal with (and I didn’t even need to cheese out and take the Dark Eldar character Baron Sathonyx for re-rolls.)  After two games with fortuitous dice rolls, the Eldar are certainly my luckiest army.


Post-Game Analysis by Kenton Kilgore

Truth be told, that went better than I expected.  My plan had been to negate the Wraithguard and their massively awesome guns by shutting down their Wave Serpents, and I mostly succeeded in that endeavor (though, of course, I couldn’t keep them off the 4-point objective).  I was much less successful in dealing with the Jetbikes, who are numerous, extremely fast, nigh-unkillable (thanks to Conceal), heinously lethal to infantry (thanks to shuriken catapults, my new most-hated weapon), and can claim objectives.


Pat showed, in the first battle, how one can craft a very effective Chaos Space Marine army, and though the Fearful Symmetry isn’t there yet, I am taking baby steps towards making them better.  I saved points by leaving off the Forgefiends’ ectoplasmic cannons (which were usually not in range in most games); by giving the Havocs lascannons (which massively increased this army’s anti-tank capability); and by treating the “Ghost Tygers” as Terminators (providing more anti-tank + mobility).  It’s a shame that Shamshir and his squad never got into the fight, but that’s what can happen when one gambles on Deep Striking.


Being a themed army, the Fearful Symmetry probably won’t ever be “top-tier” (however you want to define that), but I was pleased that they hung in there against the Eldar, who clearly are back to being the powerhouses they were in 2nd Edition.

(BTW, one will notice that in this game, there was no close combat.  This is the only game of 40K I can recall having ever played--since 1987, mind you--where there was no close combats)


King of the Hill
Introduction <> Battle #1 <> Battle #2 <> Battle #3 <> Battle #4 <> Battle #5 <>  Battle #6 <> Conclusion

Posted May 2014



Fighting Tigers:
Codex <> Tactics <> Gallery <> Allies and Enemies <> Tales of the Tigers

Other Pages:
Main <> What's New <> Site Index <> The Tiger Roars <> Themed Army Ideas
Events and Battle Reports <> Campaigns <> Terrain <> FAQ <> Beyond the Jungle