Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Dark Eldar WWP List vs Tyranids

In the second game with Scott last Saturday I pitted my new Dark Eldar dual-webway list against the same Tyranid list that had narrowly lost out to Tau in the previous game. You can find my webway list here. We'd be playing the second mission from the Blog Wars 3 scenarios which involves a Cleanse (4th ed) mission played with Spearhead deployment. The only difference from the rulebook missions being that the special characters (Baron for me, Swarmlord for Scott) can claim a quarter without support from troops.

Battle Report
The Dark Eldar would be going first and therefore I deployed my two venoms right at the front of my deployment zone. Scott deployed his tyranids as close as possible and kept his genestealers in reserve in order to Outflank them.

The venoms only needed to move 6" to drop off the webways (I forgot the templates so we made some out of paper!) which allowed the trueborn to stay inside to fire their blasters. This allowed each squad to cause a couple of wounds on big stuff. One squad killed a tyrant guard whilst the other wounded the winged tyrant. The venoms themselves ripped into the tyranids as well and caused wounds on the tervigon and killed some termagants. The tyranids responded by advancing on the webways. The hive guard managed to destroy one of the venoms and kill two of the trueborn. The shots at the other venom failed to hit their mark as the distortion caused by the flickerfield distracted the firers. Unsurprisingly both haemonculi were slain straight away but the tervigon would only spawn a single brood as Scott scored a double again!

A squad of wyches, reavers, wracks, hellions and a talos emerged from the portals and slammed into the tyranids. The reavers scythed down some gargoyles with their bladevanes. The remaining venom retreated to a safe distance and kept firing on the swarmlord killing another bodyguard and wounding the mighty tyranid monster himself. The wracks charged into the hive guard but despite poisoned attacks they failed to cause a single wound. The hive guard were similarly unsuccessful though and the combat was locked. The wyches had more success easily cutting down an entire brood of termagants to claim a pain token. The talos hit the tervigon with more success than his coven brethren and killed it off. The hellions attempted to multicharge two termagant broods but a poor run roll meant that their Adrenalight boosted attacks were more than enough to kill off a single brood leaving them exposed.

The mawloc emerged from the ground and the Terror from the Deep claimed the entire wych squad. This was a significant blow and with the mawloc a decent distance from the portals it would survive to burrow again for more devastation. Genestealers appeared on my left flank but were unable to fleet into combat with the remaining venom. The swarmlord charged in on the wracks and easily dealt with them. The hive tyrant hit the hellions hard but thanks to Baron they were able to break free of the combat to be able to kill more termagants in their turn.

The cronos, reavers and further wych squad emerged. The wyches killed off the remaining hive guard and the reavers' bladevanes killed off the gargoyles. The cronos caused a wound on the hive tyrant and gave the pain token to the wyches. The venom swung around to try and gun down the genestealers but could only kill a handful. The trueborn had disembarked and continued to fire on the swarmlord bringing down another tyrant guard. The hellions were free to kill off more termagants and the exposed hive tyrant lost it's final wound to the lonely trueborn. The genestealers were able to charge the venom but the fast moving vehicle was difficult to hit and survived the onslaught. The swarmlord found himself in charge range of the recently turbo-boosted reavers and easily killed them off. The genestealers who had just arrived on the flank did the same with the other reavers and things were looking bad for the dark eldar.

The final squad of wyches emerged and I cockily decided to shoot the genestealers instead of charging reasoning that with the drug and pain token enhancement I'd be able to kill them in combat anyway. The venom finished off the genestealers on the other flank. The swarmlord finally fell to the blaster fire of the trueborn. I'd now got one quarter with the hellions, one was contested by both genestealers and wyches and the other two were in my control but without any scoring units. I felt pretty confident until Scott produced the mawloc again! I'd totally forgotten it was still under the earth again and Scott could kill all of the wyches with the blast template. I breathed a sigh of relief when it scattered and only a couple of wyches died though!

The talos moved in to finish off the genestealers with help from the wyches and with only the mawloc left (and the trueborn/venom closing in) I think Scott was relieved to find the game end of turn 5. I therefore won 1-0.

Conclusion
I managed to make this game a lot closer than it should've been. Having inflicted massive damage on the tyranids early on I got far too cocky. One squad of reavers landing too near the flank and the other too near the swarmlord were rookie mistakes that cost me both units. The wyches not being spread out and therefore falling victim to the mawloc was another error. Had Scott hit the second squad with the Terror from the Deep attack then he could've pulled back a draw I reckon. It goes to show you need to focus in the later turns of the game. This is particularly true with Dark Eldar.

Scott was unlucky not to do better with his list and I think with that second tervigon and slightly better luck he'd present a real threat to any of my armies. Both games were hugely enjoyable and I'm always a fan of fighting Scott's beautifully painted nids. I hope he'll make it along to Blog Wars 3 too.

I feel a lot better about the webway list than I did having played Matt. I think the key is to only strike when necessary and otherwise hold back and use the venoms to thin down troops. The Dark Eldar are very much a glass cannon and rely on being locked in combat to survive fire. I've got a lot to learn about using them but one thing's for sure they're certainly a lot of fun to use!

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