Return to Auros IX: Battle #4 by
Patrick Eibel and Kenton Kilgore
Sho-T’s Blood Axes (4000 points) by Patrick Eibel
My strategy was to have the rideless units start on the board (and hopefully survive the preliminary barrage), while everything else came in from reserve.
Fighting Tigers of Veda
(3995 points) by Kenton
My plan was simple: concentrate my forces, make for the objectives, gun down Orks with mass firepower, and blow them up the bastions. Easy as breakfast.
Setting Up by Kenton Kilgore
Learning from previous games, Pat kept most of his forces off the board, in reserves. The Big Gunz held one bastion; Kommandos lurking within held the other two; Shoota Boyz had the fortified causeway between the two Kommando bastions.
With that, it was time to get it on.
Turn 1 by Kenton Kilgore
In prior games, I’d been burned by Deep Striking mishaps, so to limit those, I took advantage of the mission’s Total Envelopment rule, which let me pick where my guys wanted to come in. Most of my guys walked or drove on from a long board edge not far from two of the three objectives. One Sternguard squad (with flamers), the larger Vanguard squad (with jump packs), and the “assault” Scouts dropped onto the board: the first two squads came down okay, but the Scouts deviated onto a bastion and were destroyed.
At the start of my Shooting Phase, I rolled to see if the Deathstorm would strike, and it did. Few of Pat’s guys were exposed, and many of mine were. After all the dice rolling was over, Pat had lost exactly 0 Orks, while I had lost two Tactical Marines and a Vanguard Vet. At this point, the idea began to percolate in the back of my mind that really, after all these years, I f*****g hate 40K.
On to the shooty-shoot action. The Sternguard flamed Bastion #1, killing 6 Kommandoes inside. The squad’s combi-melta also shook the building. Heavy weapons fire from my Dreadnought, Vindicator, and Land Raider Crusader shook Bastion #2. In the Assault Phase, the Vanguard failed a difficult terrain check and couldn’t charge the Shoota Boyz that they had plopped down in front of.
Pat rolled for his reserves at the start of his first turn. The Nobz Mobz with Underboss Moe Zee Bopp came on, as did the Burna Boyz, all three units of Trukk Boyz, both units of Dethkoptas, and the Warbuggies. According to the Planetstrike rules, Pat had to roll randomly to see from which board edges the units came on, and again struck gold, with most of his guys showing up near mine. Suddenly, I had Orks all over me.
The Kommandoes emerged from the bastions to deal with the encroaching Tigers and opened fire, killing one Sternguard Veteran; Shoota Boyz gunned down two Vanguard. The Vannies opted (Combat Tactics) to voluntarily fall back 7" away from the oncoming Orks. The Kannons and Dethkoptas fired, shaking Surya, my Dread. Trukk Boyz shot one member of each of my Devastator units, and the Nobz blasted a nearby Tactical Marine.
In the Assault Phase, the Trukk Boyz rushed my Devs, wiping out Agni 2 and taking Agni 1 down to a man. More Trukk Boyz and Nobz assaulted a Tactical Squad, taking down all of them.
Despite their fallback move, the Vanguard Vets got jumped by Shoota Boyz, with each unit losing two and the Nob being wounded. The Vanguard attempted to voluntarily fall back, failed to beat the Orks’ Initiative roll, and lost another Tiger for their troubles. Nearby, the Kommandos charged the Sternguard, with three of each unit getting whacked. The Sternguard successfully fell back 7".
At that point, Raja Khandar Madu (my Chapter Master) and the Fighting Tiger Black Ops (Vanguard Veterans) charged the survivors. The Redhead and friends dropped the Warboss, but the Bad Dok and the Nob lived on, wiping out the Black Ops. Khandar Madu failed her Morale check and was forced to fall back. At this point, I seriously began to consider that maybe, after all these years, I f*****g hate 40K.
Elsewhere, my Vanguard killed four Shoota Boyz, but because of the scenario’s special rules, Pat’s Orks were Fearless, so the greenies were not going anywhere. The last Devastator managed to bash out an Ork’s brains, but his Trukk Boy chums took down my guy, and with that, several hundred points of heavy weapons were out of the fight without ever firing a shot.
On Pat’s turn, all of the rest of his guys except the Wartrakks and Stormboyz came on. Pat rolled well again for where they came on, with most of them arriving near my already embattled guys. Kannons again shook Surya, the Orks did that “WAAAAUGH!” thing they do, and the choppy-chop part of the show continued much as it had in the previous turn.
that had chased off the Sternguard now rushed to
get in the Shoota Boy/Vanguard Vet scrum. The last
two Vets dropped two Kommies, but both got guished and that was the end of another high-priced
Marine unit. Newly-arriving Slugga Boyz jumped another Tactical Squad, killing all but one Stripeypants (who then ran off the board), and losing 2
out of 20 of their own.
The other set of Kommandoes attacked another Tactical Squad, taking four Tiger pelts and losing three greenies. Burna Boyz attacked my Librarian and the Tactical Squad he was with, killing all the grunts and chasing Zaghnal off the board, while losing only three guys.
My Sternguard units showered the nearby Orks with ranged-fire love, wiping out the Burna Boyz, dropping one Dethkopta and knocking a Wound off another. The newly-arrived Scouts shot the Pain Boy dead, and a Tactical Squad finished off the last Nob.
Another of my Tactical Squads unloaded on the Slugga Boyz, the Sergeant’s combi-flamer hitting 9 of them--and only killing one due to crappy “to wound” rolls. Another Sternguard unit (one with storm bolters) backed them up, dropping--but not eliminating--the Slugga Boyz. Because, as I mentioned, Pat’s Orks were Fearless for this game, the survivors just kept on keepin’ on.
In the Tactical Squad/Kommando fracas near my end of the board, the Stripes lost three, Team Green lost one, and the donnybrook continued.
At the start of Pat’s turn, the rest of his guys came on the board, near mine again. Ork shooting was not good: the Wartrakks didn’t take down a single Tactical Marine, the Deffkoptas and Kannons didn’t even scratch Surya’s paint, and only one Sterner, one Tac guy, and one Scout were taken out by fire from various mobz and the bastions’ auto-weapons.
However, the Shooting Phase is not where Orks make their money. In the Assault Phase, some Trukk Boyz swarmed the Vindicator (which I had stupidly not moved) and wrecked it. The remaining Slugga Boyz jumped the Sternguard who had fired on them, wiping them out: the Stern Sarge’s power weapon did not even hit, and the Sluggaz only lost two of their own. The Kommandoes polished off the Tac guys they had been cavorting with, losing only a single Slinky Ork. The fact that some Shoota Boyz assaulted White Tiger II and failed to do skadoosh did not comfort me in the slightest.
The Scouts’ frag missile went wide and the rest of them only shot dead two of the Trukk Boyz who had taken out my Vindicator. Finally able to shoot again, Surya’s twin lascannons penetrated Bastion #2, shaking it.
The rest of my shooting turned much better, with Tac Squads dropping four Kommandoes and wounding their Nob, as well as bagging four Slugga Boyz. Two of my surviving Sternguard units combined fire to vaporize 10 Stormboyz. Ordinarily, this might be enough to cause mass panic and have Orks rabbiting away, but because of the special Backs to the Walls rule for the scenario, Pat’s guys were Fearless, and blah blah blah.
On Pat’s turn, his second Nobz mob got out of their ride (which I had failed to notice coming) right up in my lines. Realizing that I had no hope of winning, and deciding that this nonsense had gone on long enough, I conceded.
Post-Game Analysis by Patrick Eibel
"You could be a
meteorologist all your life... and never see something like this.
Every 40K player likes to think that they have a shot to win in any game they play. Sometimes, however, you face an opponent you have no chance against. Sometimes the parameters of the mission don’t favor the army list you have written up. Sometimes every dice roll you need to work, fails in epic proportions. And sometimes you get a “perfect storm” where you get all three.
I would like to claim some kind of tactical brilliance in winning this game, but the truth is that making Orks Fearless makes them ridiculously good. I did bring a pretty effective list and used it well within the context of the mission, but the mission favored me and I suspect that if the table was reversed, I would have been on the end of the beat stick.
I have had my fair share of meltdowns during a 40k game, so I empathize with Kenton. In the heat of the moment, you begin to wonder why you continue to invest time and money on this stupid game. Usually after a few days (and perhaps a win with a different army) I begin to feel better and start planning for my next game. I hope that Kenton will feel this way soon. Otherwise, I am going to have a lot of figures to put up on eBay.
by Kenton Kilgore
I agree with his assessment that letting Orks be Fearless is just ridiculous. I also agree with his post-game recommendation to me that bringing Rhinos would have vastly improved my chances. In retrospect, I didn’t think this one out very well: why did I imagine that slogging across a board to reach the bastions was better than driving? I could have cut the superfluous Scout squads and bought plenty of transports, which the Orks would have had problems dealing with.
Research has shown that getting angry temporarily drops one’s IQ, and it showed in this game. Once I let my own poor planning, Pat’s good fortune with dice rolls, and my misfortune get under my skin, I started making stupid mistakes. For example, I didn’t move the Vindicator on Turn 3, though I saw the Trukk Boyz (with their power-klawed Nob) approaching. I forgot about the Black Op Sergeant’s storm shield: she might have made an invulnerable save and stayed in the fight. I totally lost of track of the Warphead’s Nobz mob. And so on.
The next game will be an Apocalypse mega-battle, and I need to scrape my
act together and up my game if I want to win it and the campaign. No more
whining: time to fight like a tiger.
Posted December 2010