Tuesday, June 05, 2012
Blog Wars 3 - Game 1 - Webway DE vs. Iron Hands
For anyone wanting a reminder of the dual webway list I was fielding you can find it here. As per the scenarios we'd be playing Pitched Battle with the Annihilation mission. The difference being that the commander SC was worth 2 points (Cassius for Jamie and Baron for me).
Jamie was fielding Chaplain Cassius with a master of the forge and some assault terminators in a land raider. These were joined by 3 tactical squads (2 in rhinos, 1 on foot), a small bike squad with attack bike, a predator and a whirlwind. As with most Dark Eldar lists I've got a much better chance if I get first turn. Fortunately that's what I got and I deployed by two venoms where I wanted them. The thing I like about this list is that you don't show your hand too early. There's very little on the board for the first turn so your opponent doesn't know what to expect. From turn 2 onwards everything appears right in his face (hopefully) and it has the desired effect of shock and awe.
At this point I have no option but to sit and watch my opponent give everything he's got to destroy the venoms and their newly disembarked cargo. Unfortunately for Jamie he didn't manage to take out either venom thanks to some poor luck on his part and a jammy flickerfield save on mine. Each trueborn squad lost two members and both haemonculi took a wound despite FNP saves absorbing most of the damage.
The shooting was underwhelming. The reavers found themselves just out of half range, the venoms killed a few more troops but crucially the trueborn failed to crack open the other rhino or stop the predator shooting.
Jamie responded by taking down the wrack's newly acquired venom and cutting down all but one of the reavers. The talos was shot to pieces by the predator and the bikes whilst the other reavers took a couple of casualties from the tactical squad turning around to rapid fire at them.
With the tactical squad in cover having little left they couldn't do much damage to the wrack and elected to shoot down the remaining venom instead. The bikes now joined in on the hellion combat but despite losing some of his squad Baron was able to hit and run and get clear of the melee but not before making the tactical squad run from the board. The wracks took a hit from the whirlwind which killed one wrack and took the haemonculus' remaining wound. Cassius and the MotF moved in the direction of the wych squad and solo reaver that were nicely clustered around the rhino wreck and their flamers killed all but the hekatrix.
The remaining units now emerged from the portal. Both squads of wyches headed in direction of the command squad and the cronos moved towards the remaining full strength tactical squad hoping to hit it with it's spirit vortex. The hellions went in the direction of this squad and I hoped with help from the hekatrix they'd be able to kill them off quickly and keep away from the terminators. Brilliantly the spirit vortex scattered off the squad and straight on top of the hekatrix killing her! Nice one!
The next turn was crucial for me. I lined myself up to either shoot down the predator or have Baron charge it to finish the job. The wyches would need to kill off the MoTF. The wracks played keep away with the terminators knowing they'd have no chance even with Furious Charge. The unengaged wyches swung across to kill off the attack bike before it finished off the trueborn. All three units did their job, Baron killed the predator, the wyches got the attack bike and the other wyches finished off the MoTF.
What followed was a turn 5 where Jamie tried to chase me down and get his terminators into combat with something and failing. The whirlwind tried to kill off one of the two solo trueborn but scattered off. In turn 6 I moved my units even further away (cowardly I know) and hoped I could hold on to my slim 9-8 lead. It wasn't to be as right at the end of turn 6 (and as it turned out the game) the whirlwind finally hit it's mark and took out one of the trueborn to draw things level. That gave us 10pts each and a 200pt advantage to me in kill points.
The trueborn were as underwhelming as usual with an immobilised rhino their only achievement. The reavers were incredibly lucky to kill the land raider with a single shot but otherwise didn't add much. I was stupid with the wracks who could've moved close to the marines and been able to charge. The venoms were reasonably effective and helped me deal with the higher toughness of the bikes. It's shame the talos got taken down so early without having chance to get it's teeth into the tactical squad.
The runaway stars of the show were the hellions. They took down two tactical squads and even when on his own Baron was able to bring down the predator by taking advantage of his S7 (thanks to those two tactical squads). I've never had them do so well in a game and it think it was obviously down to the fact that they came straight out of the webway and into combat.
Overall it was an excellent game that came right down to the wire. As Andy Pattison observed that's probably the first and last time that a whirlwind played a crucial role in a tournament game!