Sunday, January 26, 2014

The Marines Squeek In

Good afternoon,

Yesterday afternoon, replete with my partially finished city sabot boards...



...(I have to apply a grey top coat), I popped round to Mark's to help him test a new Epic Tyranid list that he and a global network of Epic aficionados were working on.

I took the 3000 points as last time...
  • 1 Tactical Detachment with Supreme Commander and Rhinos
    • 6 Marine stands with transports
  • 1 Tactical Detachment with 2 Dreadnaughts
    • 6 Marine stands with, well, Dreadnaughts
  • 1 Terminator Detachment with Librarian
    • 4 Terminator stands - tough blighters, they've got re-rolls on their armour saves
  • 1 Assault Detachment
    • 4 Assault Marine stands
  • 1 Land Raider Detachment
    • 4 Land Raiders with re-enforced armour. 
  • 1 Predator Annihilator Detachment
    • 4 Predators - the smaller tanks
  • 1 Whirlwind Detachment
    • 4 Whirlwinds - rocket launching, well, Rhinos really
  • 1 Bike Detachment
    • 5 Bike stands
  • 2 Warhound Titans
    • This time my own 6mm walkers. And yes, they are a lot less bulky and imposing than Marks, but, well...these ones are mine!



Mark took...a whole heap of bugs! Nearly all infantry, a few tank bugs...and no Titans.
 





We placed our objective markers (mine are Mark's...grey ones, his are his bright red spore nodes from the 40K Battle of Macragge set), deployed our formations...






...and away we went.

First activation I sped forward my Predators to take pot shots of what I thought of at the time to be Mark's bug artillery. Turned out they were bug tanks...


...who came out to play!


And they weren't the only bugs scuttling forward.


I on the other hand...or flank, as it happened, scooted round, well, the flank.


All hoping to bounce on this lot. His biggest formation. My "break their spirit" objective.



At the beginning of Turn Two, Mark teleported in two formations of Lictors - three to the front, six behind.

Why is it he keeps picking on my Whirlwinds?


I in turn 'ported in my Terminators.



Thankfully, I won initiative for the start of the turn, and turned back my Predators to deal with the Lictors. (I was going to bring them back anyway - they were about to get mobbed!)

Anyhow, now you see them...


...and now you don't!

But there was that twice big formation still hanging around waiting to munch on Marine missiles. Well, if it was missiles they wanted, missiles they were going to get. Release the Whirlwinds!


Which caused the broken Lictors to huddle in a cater. After all, misery likes company...


On my right I (at the suggestion of Mark, bless his little cotton socks), rode my bikes forward to do a, oh, what was it called...oh, that's right, a clipping attack. A flanking firefight assault, during which I was able to take advantage of supporting fire from my Terminators, most of my Tacticals and my Land Raiders.


The result...

...was quite spectacular!



That sent his biggest formation, or what was left of it, running away. Right, what's next?


Oh, that's right, those Lictors.

I rushed back my Warhounds and let fly.


Breaking his remaining Lictors. The Whirlwinds were saved!


The trouble with these bugs, well, the little ones anyway...


...they kept coming back!


Right, well, since my Land Raiders are really only good at taking down tanks, time to send them to hunt down some tanks. Well, kinda tanks. Bug tanks, anyway. Those ones with the tubes sticking out of their backs.


And since I'd moved my tanks into harms way, I sent forward my Tacticals to cover them from the mess of bugs that were lurking towards the back there.


All while my bikes stayed out of harms way. Mostly.


On the other flank, Mark piled on the pressure.


And in the centre too, bother it.



And still the bugs kept re-spawning.


Beginning of Turn Three, Mark surfaced his burrowing bugs, again after my Whirlwinds. Well, ok, my Blitz objective, but it was hard for my Whirlwinds not to feel picked on!


However, seeing as this unburrowing was planned before the battle began, Marks...tunnellers...kind of surfaced in the midst of some anti tank (that's sort of what they were, assault tanks) fire power.

First from my Predators...


...then from my Warhounds.


And just like that, they broke and ran!

Or is that slithered?


Alas, my centre Tactical formation were about to feel the attention of a whole heap of bug!



Ouch!

So, I'd won the right, Mark the left, it was time to do something about the centre...while still trying to figure out what to do about the threat of those two great piles of squirming cockroaches out back in front of my remaining Tacticals.

So I tried thinning out the herd, first against those bug tanks...


...then try my luck with my Terminators in the centre.



You know how I said that Mark had secured the left. Well...



...my poor wee Predators were parked on the left.

Bother.



 
Towards the end of the turn, I realized that if I rushed up my bikes I'd be able to claim an objective (I learnt the importance of objectives from my last game.)


Nasty nasty bugs on the left.


Beautiful brush work though.


With all those bugs huddled in the centre, I unleased a nice fat missile barrage their way.



With some success. Well, some success. Lots of little bugs squashed, but only one group of ones that counted - the formation received one blast marker for coming under fire, and one for loosing a bunch of bugs that counted. All the rest in that pile of dead bugs above didn't count for receiving blast markers. And they were bound to come back anyway!

Still, I did manage to strip away the supporting brood from the formation on my left, thanks to the Warhounds, which significantly reduced their threat.


Have I mentioned the wonderful paint work?

Another attack from my Land Raiders finally saw Marks tank bugs broken...


...however, he managed to mob my bikes...



...so...yeah...

Continuing in the centre, Mark (bless his little cotton socks) pointed out that if I sent forth my Terminators from the centre to the left and poured some fire on that stripped-out-of-little-bugs formation towards my rear, they'd break - which meant they wouldn't be able to claim that objective they were huddling over.

So that's what I did.


Thanks Mark!

To add to his dilemmas on my left, after managing to rally his burrowing tank bugs, his activation of said slitherers failed, adding another blast marker to their already blast marker rich formation.


Which was kinda funny!

Again, my Whirlwinds were safe!


And then we came down to it. Mark sent forth his mighty menacing mass to contest that centre objective, and, at the same time, unleashed his so-far-not-doing-much supporting formation onto my Land Raiders.

My overwatching Tacticals did manage to take out a couple, as they were going in, but...


...still, I lost a tank. But only one, which amazed me. You should have seen the number of hits they had to shrug off! Thank goodness for re-enforced armour!


And in the ensuing fire fight...


...the bugs came off worse!


All but this big bug wiped out!

Now that was a surprise.




And so the end of Turn 4 arrived. We diced to see if the battle continued, and...it didn't.

Neither of us had secured enough objectives, so it came down to points destroyed.

The Marines were victorious!

But only by the skin of their teeth - we'd both taken down about a third of each other's army. The difference was something like 100 points in my favour.

Perhaps it was the urban camo...






It was a great game, full of tactical challenges and, "well now what do I do?" moments.

Thanks Mark,

I thoroughly enjoyed my outing!

Nick