Friday, March 12, 2010

Sometimes the dice just go your way. Battle report vs OSH.

Poor sidestriker. The dice were not kind to him.

So last night was the clash of my new 1850 marine list vs Old Shatter Hand's 1850 list. We played at Dream Wizards among the masses of MTG players and some other 40k/Warmachine folks. I noted the prevalence of Deff-Rollas among the ork players now that the FAQ has ruled that they can hit vehicles ;-)

So my list was a heavy tank-deathstar-hybrid sort of thing.
- Captain with Powerfist
- 5 Terminators with Cyclone Missile Launcher
- Multimelta dreadnought
- TL-Autocannon dreadnought
- 10 Grey Knights with 2 Incinerators
- 10 Tactical Marines with Missile launcher and Meltagun
- 10 Tactical Marines with Missile launcher and flamer
- 5 scouts with bolters
- Land Raider
- Land Raider Redeemer

Old Shatter Hands brought
- Fireknive Shas'El with 2 bodyguards (target arrays, a target lock, 2 drones)
- Fireforge (Fusion/Missile) Shas'El (target array)
- 3 Deathrains
- 10 Kroot with 5 kroot hounds (converted from LOTR Wargs, great idea).
- 9 Fire Warriors in Devilfish
- 9 Fire Warriors in Devilfish
- 3 Piranhas with fusion
- 2 Hammerheads with railguns and SMS
- 3 Broadsides with Target arrays, leader with target lock

We rolled up pitched battle deployment and annihilation as missions. In many ways, this feels like the most original way to play 40k to me. Basically we line up and kill each other.

So the game can be described in two ways and it looks very different based on which way you consider. We have the game result and the tactical part of the game.

Game result: A strong victory to me (7 kill points to 4, with the chance of adding more kill points if we played another turn and not many chances for OSH to get more).

Tactical result: A close fought battle.

So what happened to lead to these divergent results?

Basically OSH deployed with a central firebase of the Deathrains, Broadsides and hammerheads, sent his piranhas out wide and put the rest in reserve. I played cautiously with my Land Raiders by putting them on my far right so that they were out of the way of the railguns in the early turns. In the centre I sent my dreads and Grey Knights with the captain. The tactical marines combat squadded and took supporting positions.
As I advanced up the centre with my Deathstar and went to my right flank with the Land Raiders, Old Shatter Hands swung his forces to the opposite flank and kept up a strong rate of fire. The broadsides stayed as an anchor so that they could fire and also so I would continue to come forwards to assault them as there was a big difficult terrain block to my left that would have left my Grey Knights in the open if they'd tried to change direction.
I responded by continuing my sweeping manouvers and gradually caught up with a battered the Tau forces. Overall it gave me a strong win as I dropped a lot of troops and didn't take too many casualties. Tactically speaking, OSH played well and used the Tau strengths to put me in tough positions over which units I would expose to fire.

On the other hand, the dice completely killed him....

I managed to make roughly 90% of all cover saves on my vehicles (from smoke or terrain), his attacks routinely failed to penetrate (even the broasides rolled 1s vs the dread) and when they did, the damage rolls were weak. I had one dreadnought immobilised and with no autocannons and the other lacking a multimelta but it had taken 5 turns of shooting to get them to that point. The Land Raiders were impervious to the few shots that came their way and if I hadn't immobilised my Redeemer on dangerous terrain then I could have been even more aggressive with my heavy armour. I rolled well on shooting in general, really well on assault attacks against OSH's vehicles and generally had a great game. I even started to feel bad by the end as it seemed so stacked in my favour for this game. Only the kroot did well on their rolls as I tried (in vain) to blast them out of cover and claim another kill point.
I'm sure we'll have a rematch where the opposite will occur and I have to thank OSH for remaining a great opponent even when it was all going wrong.

As far as his list went, I think it is fairly solid. The tournament he's looking at is 2000 pts so we talked about adding pathfinders, dropping one FW devilfish (they can use the PF one) and using the points to add another piranha. This would give him 2 units of 2 fast fusion blasters and the markerlight support he will need to deal with heavy cover saves.
In any case, a great (albeit lucky) game for me and I've already offered to swap sides and take Tau against OSH's blood angels soon.

PS: On a side note I met the local Press Ganger (Warmachine/Hordes intro guy) who has offered to show me some cool Cygnar stuff next week if I make it to DW again. Yay for steampunk walkers.


  1. Oh the horror. Reliving that battle through this write-up was tear-jerking. I was thinking about those snake-eyes and how they showed up a critical moment! Oh the tragedy. Nice game though, I had fun and I learned a lot from it. You always learn more when you lose. It seems when we play, you've got all the luck. Your list was solid too. I really think it is the kind of army Space Marines should be. Balanced.

  2. It really was a game of luck more than anything, which is why i truly feel there were two outcomes depending on how you looked at it.

    I can't believe that guy saying that you'd never kill the land raider with a hammerhead right before you rolled for it. Whether or not it made any difference to the roll, it's just plain rude.

    I had a really good time with the game too, regardless of the result. I know how much luck was on my side and so I need to think more what I will do if I don't have that boost. I think my list was decent but I need to be more aware of terrain and how much it can block big things like Land Raiders. Your strategy of getting the skimmers out of my way while my big brick tanks were stuck in where they could move was very good. I have to think ahead more about that in future games.

  3. Wow - must have been some bad rolling to not pop two landraiders with that many railguns and speedy fusion blasters on the table. Happens to us all!

  4. It was really a bad game for OSH's dice. The Land Raiders didn't come under much fire during the game really as they were getting outmanouvred at first and by the time they were in the thick of it, I'd killed much of what OSH had to hit them with.

    It was more painful to see the dreadnoughts take about 20 missile pod hits, a few fusion blasters and some railguns and still not die by the end of the game. That was the real kicker for OSH's firepower. If they had dropped early on (as they should) then he probably would have done a lot more harm to the Land Raiders.