Monday, 17 October 2011

Raven Guard & Grey Knights Vs Orks ~ Battle Report

Before I get into the report, I'll begin with a little backstory.

A friend and I are planning to attend an upcoming doubles campaign/tournament at Warhammer World and have thus been undergoing a couple of practise games recently, both to test how our lists work together and of course how we do together ourselves.
In previous tests we've done well with only very minor mistakes in teamwork, this game shows us working well except for one rather obvious mistake on my behalf. *laughs*

The upcoming event requires teamed players to build a 750pt army each with a required HQ and Troops choice, so that together they fit on a single force organisation chart. Quick thinkers will already realise that unlike the standard FOC this requires the army to have a minimum of two HQ as well as two Troops.

This game was planned to involved an allied imperial force consisting of 750pts of James' Raven Guard Scouts and 750pts of my Grey Knights, against which another friend of ours, Richard, would be pitting 1,500pts of his assembled Ork horde.

Allied Imperial Force
James' Half:
James designed the core of his force for me to build around before we got down to discussing details and alterations. Before this game he had included an Autocannon Dreadnought in place of the Scout Bikers, yet for this game he wanted to test his Scout Bikers, partly due to his Dread having little use in a previous game but mostly as he'd recently acquired the unit and wanted to try them on the battlefield.

Master of the Forge - Conversion Beamer

Scout Squad - Additional Scout, Missile Launcher, Sniper Rifles, Camo Cloaks

Scout Squad - Additional Scout, Missile Launcher, Sniper Rifles, Camo Cloaks

Scout Squad - Five additional Scouts, Missile Launcher, Mix of Sniper Rifles & Shotguns

Land Speeder Storm

Scout Biker Squad - Cluster Mines, Astartes Grenade Launcher, Combi-flamer, Meltabomb


My Half:
Since I knew James was going with a heavily ranged force, I'd decided upon Grey Knights since I feel a mid-long range force would compliment his force well. In my original list I included a Psy-Bolter Razorback for one of the Strike Squads, which I decided to swap out for a lone Paladin for this games test.

Inquisitor Malcolm Elderflower - Power Sword, Rad Grenades, 3x Servo-skulls
6x Death Cultists
> Chimera - Heavy Bolter & Heavy Flamer

Vindicare Assassin

Paladin - Nemesis Force Halberd

Strike Squad - Psycannon

Strike Squad

Dreadnought - 2x Twin-Autocannons, Psybolt Ammunition

Richard's Army
Richard has admittedly only been back into 40k for a month or so, having last played back around 2nd/3rd edition beforehand. As such this game was as much for him to learn & practise as it was for James & I to prepare for doubles.
He has yet to really settle on any regular units, with the exception of Lootas which he does rather well with. This game was his first time trying Burna Boyz, Slugga armed boyz or a Deffdread.

Warboss - Bosspole, Power Klaw, Twin-Shoota

Weirdboy - Warphead

8x Burna Boyz

5x Lootas - 1x Mek

5x Lootas - 1x Mek

6x Ork Nobz

30x Ork Boyz - 2x Big Shootas, 1x Rokkit Launcha

30x Ork Boyz - 2x Big Shootas, 1x Rokkit Launcha

5x Deffkoptas - 5x Twin-Rokkit Launchas

Warbuggy - Armour plates, Red Paint Job

Deff Dread - Big Shoota, Rokkit Launcha, Armour Plates, Grot Riggers

2x Killer Kans - Armour Plates & Skorchas

Terrain & Mission
The board was an urban 6'x4' field upon which we'd placed a number of ruins, seven of turned out the shape the game. Two relatively intact buildings were placed near each of the long edges with the other three ruins along the central line, from what turned out to be my point of view these were a large mostly collapsed ruin slightly off centre to my left, a half intact ruin on the other side of the central city square, separating the right end of the board where another heavily rubbled section lay.
Dice rolls revealed we'd be Seizing Ground in a Pitched Battle with three objectives, one of which was placed in the central square near some walls with the other two in the buildings to its left and right.

Richard won the roll off and elected to go second, so James & I prepared for deployment, taking only a small break for me to position my servo-skulls and for us to briefly discuss James' Cluster Mines which were secretly noted to be set in the collapsed ruin to our left of the central square.
James positioned his Whirlwind behind the walls on our side of the central square, in front of which I placed my Psycannon unit, Paladin and Dreadnought. I then deployed my other strike squad and chimera covering the clear ground on the far side of the left ruin and James decided to combat squad his largest unit, placing the ranged half on the balcony of the left half of our deployment zone with his Master of the Forge, above which on the next floor I placed my Vindicare Assassin. Lastly James placed his Speeder on our right flank, within which the shotgun armed combat squad sat ready.

Richard placed his Deffdread, Deffcoptas, Burna Boyz and Warboss across from my Chimera, supported by one of the Loota units in a ruin. His weirdboy was placed near the central square with one of the boyz mobs, with the Nobz nearby and the other Loota's supporting from behind in the other ruin. Against our weak right flank he placed his second boyz mob, the Killer Kans and Warbuggy.

When it came to deploying Infiltrators (the phase James dominates) he used both his smaller scout units and bikes to support our right flank, placing one unit in the building near the central square with the ruin near our table edge, with the bikers between the two.
James won the scouts roll off and raced his bikers against the right edge of the board, Richard then considered his options for his Deffcoptas, however my servo-skulls had not left him with many so he decided to turboboost them to a position central to his board edge.

Turn One
Richard failed to seize initiative, so after I moved my Grey Knights forward and James moved his fast units into better ranged positions we began our shooting with the Raven Guard dropping a mass of blast markers upon the Ork ranks reducing their numbers. On our left the strike squad and Chimera cut a number of the Burna Boyz apart, while the Dread cut down a number of the Ork Nobz despite their cover. The Vindicare fired a turbo-penetrator round, yet found himself less than an inch out of range to the Deffdread. Fortunately for the imperials both the Burnas & Nobz failed their leadership tests and fled back off the board.

Taking the loss of two units so early quite well, Richard began his advance.
Even tho his forces on our left side now consisted of only his Warboss and Deff Dread they started forward while the Deffcoptas led the way into the central square followed by the Weirdboy mob, both setting their sights upon my Dreadnought since the Orkish psyker had generated the powerful Zzap anti-tank power.
Shots from the Deffdread and Warboss dropped two of the Grey Knights who held fast, whilst the combined psychic bolt and mass of rokkits tore into my Dreadnought tearing both arms off and rendering it immobile and unable to affect the game further.

On turn one, with a roll of a one my Weirdboy started to shake and his eyes bulge with the raw power. The boyz next to him were taking cover behind all the rubble nearby and thanking that their trousers were already brown! Just when the weirdboy was about to explode and take half the surrounding mob with him he used his warphead training to control his powers and form his anti tank physic blast with a roll of a 3! ~ Richard

After our first turn I was feeling we might manage to clear the Orks out faster than expected, yet the effective destruction of my Dreadnought in his turn left me far less sure... ~ Elle

Turn Two
James continued to maintain range on the right flank, whilst I moved forward centrally moving my Psycannon squad towards the Deffcoptas and the lone Paladin towards the Weirdboyz unit. Over on the left flank I decided to move the Chimera full speed towards the central square whilst the remaining Strike Squad moved into the collapsed ruins to gain cover from the Deffdreads Rokkit, however shortly after I'd finished moving James gave a groan of despair and reminded me that it was that area which his Bikers had booby-trapped.
Accepting my foolish mistake, much to Richards amusement James made his rolls, with the blast causing an impressive eight wounds. Luckily I was able to roll a more impressive series of armour saves leaving the Grey Knights unscathed but rather embarrassed.
Shooting began with the Paladin calling forth a Holocaust upon the Weirdboyz mob, killing eight and leaving around a third of their original number. My central strike squad opened fire with their Psycannon and Stormbolters causing one of the Deffcoptas to crash to the ground, however my Vindicares supporting shot failed to wound.
James had managed to reduce the number of boyz on the right flank a little yet had unfortunately failed to make a dent in the vehicles, elsewhere his Master and units fire managed to shake the Deffdread, making my earlier mistake unnecessary. His Whirlwind however flew off course and failed to bother the Lootas.
In the assault phase my Paladin found himself just out of range, however my central Strike Squad threw themselves upon the Deffcoptas. Deciding to activate the units Force weapons rather than use Hammerhand I managed only three hits, yet luckily this was enough to wound twice. My luck continued as Richard proceeded to fail to kill anything with his attacks and then fail his morale check and get run down.

I think this may have been the first time my Strike Squads have proven themselves capable of combat, I can see why I've heard worry over their Force Weapons ~ Elle

By now the Ork lines had met heavy resistance everywhere except for the relatively out of sight section along our right flank, which continued forward led by the Warbuggy which sped well into the imperial deployment zone. Over near the central square, the Weirdboy found himself charged with the Frazzle power and decided to lead his mob clambering over the walls towards my Strike Squad near the objective rather than the lone paladin. At the same time Richards Warboss closed in on my other Strike Squad as they were composing themselves.
When it came to shooting, Richard's Lootas manage to drop a scout each as the big guns from his boyz mob on the right flank opened fire upon the Scout Bikers, slaying all but the sergeant. His Weirdboy was lucky enough to blast my Psycannon armed warrior into oblivion, yet his luck fell through when it came to assault as the walls prevented the boyz getting in. Richards Warboss however managed to charge the other strike squad, who activated their force weapons yet failed to land a wound, in return the Warboss' Power Klaw cut all three down with ease leaving the Ork to climb atop the highest pile of rubble to celebrate.

Turn Three
Hearing the Orks yells, Malcolm Elderflower and his retinue of Death Cultists piled from the back of their chimera and rapidly took positions surrounding the boss. In the central square my Strike Squad and Paladin both turned on the Weirdboy. Knowing his remaining bike was useless against the approaching Killer Kans, James had him turbo-boost off round into the central square.
Entering the Shooting phase, mass shotgun fire from the back of the speeder shook the Warbuggies crew, although the speeders Heavy Bolter failed to damage the Killer Kans. In desperation the forward scout group fired upon the Killer Kans to no avail, leaving the unit helpless in the face of the Ork's return fire.
Centrally the Whirlwind again missed its mark and failed to hit any of the Ork Lootas, while my Strike Squad and Paladin blew apart a number of the remaining boyz and wounded the Weirdboy.
The Vindicare turned his sights back on the Deffdread and with two rolls of one failed to hit, gah!
In the assault phase the death cultists threw themselves upon the Ork Warboss as the Grey knights struck at the Weirdboy and his unit, neither combat lasted long with no Ork getting a single attack off.

While he was proving strong on our right flank, Richard was now left with only his Loota squads and Deff Dread elsewhere on the board, yet he played on with the Deffdread moving ever forward. On the other end of the field the Killer Kans followed suit, followed by the mass of Orks behind them.
Richard again proved uncannily accurate at shooting, yet our saves mostly held out with the Deffdread slaying a scout and the Lootas slaying another in a different unit.
As expected the Killer Kans unleashed their Skorchas, melting all but one of the scouts on the right flanks objective, luckily for the remaining man, who held position, the Ork Boyz failed to finish him off and the Kans were unable to get through the difficult terrain to assault.

Turn Four
Centrally my strike squad fell back to the objective as the Paladin started in the direction of Ork Boyz on the right flank yet found himself overtaken by James' remaining Scout Biker.
On what remained of our right flank the surviving lone scout near the objective moved away slightly, forcing the Killer Kans to enter the difficult terrain if they wanted to flame him, while the Speeder fall back towards our edge beyond range of the Skorchas if they went that way.
Shooting began with the Whirlwind missing the Lootas for the third time. The Biker fortunately was able to avoid this problem against his target by using the flamer on his combi-bolter, which managed to slay seven of the Orks who had not expected the attack. Behind him the Paladin failed its psychic test however and was unable to lend support where needed. Elsewhere on the right flank the Warbuggy managed to ignore the shotgun fire this time around as the Speeders Heavy Bolter managed to cut down one of the Ork Boyz, yet many remained.
Fire from the Master of the Forge and the missile launcher with him cut down two of the Lootas opposite them and in the central square the strike squad opened fire on the other Lootas, killing three. The Vindicare also managed his first effective hit during the game, yet still only managed to immobilise the Ork Deffdread.
With shooting over and little else to do the Biker threw himself into combat and managed to slay an Ork before he was torn from his saddle and ripped apart.

Knowing that he at best could scrape a draw and that even for that he would need for his Boyz to survive the Paladin and reach the objective, Richard decided it would be better to concede now to pack up and head home to appease his girlfriend.

The Result: Conceded
While disappointed to have yet another game which didn't reach its actual end, I can understand Richard conceding as while his Killer Kans had proved unstoppable the rest of his force had dwindled away to very little remaining.

Not entirely unexpectedly Richards shooting had proved impressively accurate for Orks (better than I'd expect of my guard usually), yet his numbers dwindled too fast for him to bring any real power to bear. I do feel sorry that he didn't get to test his Burna Boyz (I both love and fear them, hehe) and feel his playstyle did better with shoota armed boyz, so he might need to rethink his style when using slugga boyz.
His Killer Kans proved a real nightmare for James who in hindsight perhaps may have been better off abandoning the right flank to them and racing his speeder far across the board towards the objective which neither side had the units nearby to claim.

I'll begin by saying I'm glad I had previously agreed with James that his Dread would be better than the bikes in the Tournament. They did not do badly in the game, yet my foolish mistake with the booby traps just proved that while good for his army of relatively immobile or skimmer units, they are not the best choice for a double game where your ally already has a number of considerations.
Additionally a second autocannon dreadnought would have been wonderful since it would have been able to cut through the Killer Kans and similar units, especially since mine got disabled on the first turn.
As usual my Vindicare seems to be rather hit and miss, performing amazingly well in some games yet barely being effective in others. If I had the model built I'd consider replacing him with another Dread for the tournament.
The Paladin proved strong however and if James decides to use his Dreadnought in our final list, I think I'll use him in place of the Razorback. Perhaps with a Daemon Hammer for vehicles..

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