Thursday, April 7, 2011

Blood Angels vs. Deathwing: The Rematch

My freshly painted Blood Angels hit the table in anger for the first time this afternoon.  EV brought his Deathwing out and had a table set up with more terrain than usual when I arrived.  Unfortunately I seem to have no pictures with a view of the entire table, just the right 4x4 section.  Nothing much happened on the left flank, hence the lack of photos.  I ran the same BA list I've been using, jump packs and missiles, while EV ran the same Deathwing as before except he armed Belial with a Storm Shield this time around.  We had a standard deployment for once, opposing edges, and played an objective-based mission.  I had considered making objective markers these last few days, but decided that EV has that sort of thing covered.  When I found out he only had 3 I felt a little silly, but we got it figured out for today.  

I put my half of the markers far upfield to try and keep them together.  The objectives have been very spread out in the last few games and I've had problems trying to contest them both.  I hoped to claim objectives with depleted squads as the game progressed.  EV deployed first, a general sort of battle line approach.

A line of off-white.

With EV standing in a line I decided on the good ol' refused flank.  I wanted to attack in waves, so I strung my troops along in a line as well and planned to hook around the terrain.  The different squads should naturally line up as they made the turn and provide the waves of attackers that I hoped would roll up EV's line bit by bit.  I tried to have Devastators covering all the objectives with as much overlap as possible.  All the terrain meant most shots would give a cover save, so I wash't so worried about having to shoot through trees.

My deployment and plan of attack.
The first turn was reminiscent of Uncharted Seas: positioning and a bit of long shots.  EV took out a Sanguinary Guard, while I got a Terminator with a frag missile.  Since the Terminators have huge bases, I used frag missiles more in this game than previously as I could scatter some and still hit most times.  I only used Krak missiles when I might scatter on my own troops, and perhaps a time or two at a drop pod, but that comes later in the story.

End of turn 1.

Speaking of drop pods, both of EV's showed up together in turn 2.  He dropped one in my fire base and one in front of my mass of assault troops.  The one in the front I figured would get rolled quickly, but the one in the rear I was more concerned about.  It could munch through my Devastators and deprive my jumpers of their support ing fire.  A solution to that problem presented itself when EV charged my foremost assault squad.  After getting power fisted, my troops broke and ran back into my deployment zone.  The sergeant was with them, so I figured I could send him over to deal with the dread and keep the missiles flying.  EV generally walked forward and shot, killing a few marines in the process.  He was holding three objectives to my none, but they didn't matter until the game ended so I didn't worry about it.

EV's second turn.
I didn't like having a squad forcibly repurposed, but EV's charge had set him up for the second wave.  I jumped the yellow helmeted squad over the Terminators that had charged last turn while the very red assault squad moved up to get revenge.  The Sanguinary Guard moved to the rear of the queue, which lined them up with the forward dreadnaught.  Blood Lance took down the dread with a 5 on the damage chart after EV used his venerable-induced reroll of a 4.  The other squads shot up their targets, then charged in and cleaned them up.  I consolidated back to try and stay out of charge range of Belial's squad.  I also moved the remnants of the recently charged assault squad towards the dread in my rear.

End of turn 2.
I had rolled through half of EV's line, but my assault squads had taken losses against the power fists and still had three more squads of Terminators in front of them.  Meanwhile EV still had two objectives, plus all of his squads were scoring.  EV moved one squad of Terminators towards the objective in the woods and sent Belial towards my oncoming red tide.  Unfortunately he came up short on range for the charge, leaving his squad stranded in front of my waiting troops.  I didn't get a picture at the end of his turn sadly.

There was also the matter of a dreadnaught in my fire support, which charged into my assault squad and began an epic combat.

In my half of the turn I lined my squads up to mow down Belial's Bunch.  My melt fire was horrible throughout the game, missing often and occasionally failing to wound.  Four of them, plus a plasma pistol and Blood Lance, did the job though and left Belial alone.  He was dragged down by the yellow helmet squad in the assault phase.  I tried to consolidate away from the center squad as much as possible.

End of turn 3.
Turns out I didn't get far enough away from the center Terminator squad, which EV charged in during his turn.  He routed the yellow helmet squad, who broke back and ended up next to an objective.  He'd been firing on my Devestators with the squad holding the left objectives all game, and it looks like he'd taken out one squad and started in on the second here.  Meanwhile the dread continued to fight the assault squad.  The dread killed it's second marine in three phases this turn, while the sergeant continued to not damage the dreadnaught.

EV's turn 4.
I was down to one mostly intact scoring unit, plus the remnants of two more.  I the middle squad into the woods to sit on that objective while the slap fight in the south continued.  So many power fists, so little effect.  I moved the Devestators who couldn't see anything away from that combat in case the dread got a good turn in.  On the top I sent my last full squad in for revenge with fire support from the Librarian and Sanguinary Guard.  Shooting whittled down the squad and the charge finished them off.  I consolidated my assault squad forward to block any potential charges on the Sanguinary Guard.

End of turn 4.

In turn five EV assaulted my bait unit and killed everything except the Sanguinary Priest,  who broke and ran towards the center.  Another marine fell in the embarrassing assault in my firebase, leaving just the dread and sarge to duke it out.  I shot into the final squad with my Guard and sent in a glorious charge that finished the opposition.  We rolled to see if the game would end, and it did.

End of game.
I think my generalship in this battle was a good step forward from previous games.  I stuck to my plan, which worked out well.  The waves of attackers kept squads pinned down until reinforcements arrived and swept the opposition along.  I wanted to keep the Guard back until the right spot, as they can't take a punch too well, and that also worked well.  I used Blood Lance more in this game which cut through multiple targets on a couple occasions.  Things might have played out differently if the bottom brawl had been resolved, one way or the other, but it was not to be.  An epic combat between one dread and four marines lasted six rounds with no result.  I think EV broke my sergeant once, but he bounced off the board edge and back into combat, so it didn't really matter.  This was a pretty good game with some back and forth action.  The deployment was a nice change from the corner setup we've had lately, while the objectives required something beyond a "send everything to the fight" approach, even if it wasn't much beyond that.  


  1. Yeah, this game was a total rout for me. I'd blame my army (which does suck), but I made the mistake of coming at you piecemeal. This led to you being able to handle my Terminators one squad at a time. I'm just not impressed with how this army performs, so it's going into mothballs. From now on it's Plague Marines or bust!

  2. Letting me eat squads one (or two) at a time was what did you in I think. I don't know that there's anything fundamentally wrong with the list, either the army list in general or yours in particular, though I'd put in more Storm Shields if I were you. Mobility got you this last time as I could dictate when and where the melees would be, so perhaps a nice Land Raider or two would help as well.

    Ultimately I'm glad to get extra cracks at your Plague Marines, since they've been my nemesis thus far. One day I'll get that post done where I figure out the matchups I need to push between the armies.

    I may want to use your Deathwing to proxy GKs sometime so I can see if my ideas will work or not without having to spend hundreds of dollars to do so. I think I have a solid idea or three, but it wouldn't hurt to find out for sure.