Twin-Linked Grand Tournament (Day Two): “Return of the Space Communists”

So with new pilots recruited, more piles of scrap cobbled back together as horrible travesties of wheeled vehicles, and blue skins flocking to the glorious banner of the Greater Good, we returned once again to the crucible of war for a second day of gaming in the Sacramento Sector.

The traditional post battle snap shot for the folks back home.

Game Four: The Greater Infestation

We woke bright and early, coffee mug in one hand and shoota/pulse rifle in the other, only to see what appeared to be a gene stealer cult right in the middle of our beloved Greater Good.  Some of the orks thought the tyranids had mutated their wings into a mockery of our revered red and yellow battle flag, but this proved an optical illusion.  Their wings were merely painted orange as tribute to the usual tau camo scheme.  (Orks aren’t especially known for their keen eyesight.)  Our fourth game of the tournament was against a team of tau and tyranids.

The early stages of the battle saw three groups of gene stealers advancing on the three objectives in the middle of the board, one in each sector.  The bugs made an early surge into our center, trying to annihilate our tau (otherwise known as “the good tau”), but we were able to put them back with ork mortar fire and the timely arrival of both our aircraft, who annihilated a hive tyrant poised upon inflicting devastation.

This threat parried we went on the attack.  The nobz, led by my mighty warboss in his custom suit of mega-armor incorporating a void shield (lucky stikk, actually) proved an irresistible force against everything that was thrown at him.  Anything he wasn’t irresistible against, he parried by using a nearby nob as a meat shield.  Before long he was in the traitor tau lines re-educating them with his power klaw.

My partner and I each received a special dice bag!

Meanwhile, the boyz were doing good work on the other side of the battle suppressing a huge flock of gargoyles.  The good tau were providing fire support everywhere, and things were looking as they should.  The one thorn in our side was the few remaining gene stealers hiding behind tall rock pillars near each objective.  The early accuracy of our mortars gave way to goblins gone wild, who couldn’t hit water if they fell out of a boat to quote the immortal Tommy Lasorda.  Despite our dominance of the battlefield, those few, cowering bugs proved our undoing.

With time running out, the stealers made a sudden dash and pounced upon the objectives.  We did our best to eliminate them or at least drive them back, but it was not to be.  It is some time since the tournament that I am writing this, but I believe only one stealer was left on the objective and this was enough when we calculated things that Hive Fleet Tau won by one victory point.

Naturally, no pictures of this battle can be released because of the political ramifications within our Empire if news of Tau cooperating with tyranids were to get out.  In any case, I think their Shadow of the Warp affected my cell phone camera, because all of the pictures were even blurrier than usual.

Game Five: Blue Harleys Run Amok

This battle featured Eldar allied with an army of space marine bikers.  Despite the blue paint, I think they were White Scars, but writing this as I am a couple of months after the event who knows?  Either, way I believe this team either won the entire event or placed highly, but I’m not entirely sure.

Blue beakies getting some pay back.

I think this would have been a bit of a blood bath not in our favor if the marine reserves had actually come on in a timely fashion.  Instead the showed up in dribs and drabs, and in a couple of cases we were able to eliminate marines as they were arriving at the battle.  Even so, their wraith knight did a good job, anchoring the middle of the battle for them, trading fire for most of the game with our riptide.  A lone nob with a power klaw did manage to cause the giant elf construct some problems and almost finished it off until their warlord zoomed over on his jet bike and lent it a hand.  As usual we didn’t really have an answer against the ubiquitous wave serpent.

Despite the reserve snafu, which kept the game close, in the end we again lost a very close game.  At the end of the battle, with both sides depleted, they remained a more mobile army than we and were able to place themselves where they need to be in order to win.  Still, we made a good effort against a very powerful team and I think my boyz managed to grab a couple of scrap bikes as well as blue helmets, which are much in demand with my forces as trukk radiator caps.

Game Six: “Hold until Relieved.”

Elf Guard on the move.

Our final game of the tournament was against Eldar allied with Imperial Guard.  Although the battlefield didn’t have a lot of terrain on it, it did have several very tall towers.  The battle raged around these towers, which served well to block line of sight and as fire platforms.

The initial tone of the battle had the orks closing the distance against an enemy, who held their positions and punished the greenskin advance.  My partner focused on providing fire support and grabbing objectives.  Our opponent’s devastator did good work blowing up ork vehicles before it fell to a nob with a giant can opener.

Most of the battle took place on our opponents’ side of the board with humans and elves alike trying to beat back the orks.  They were largely unsuccessful in this, due mainly to horrible shooting on the part of the guard and truth to tell the warboss in his void shield mega-armor was all but unstoppable, if painfully slow.

Still, the enemy did have a late game trick up their sleeve.  A squad of storm troopers deep struck behind our lines next to the fire warriors, who were keeping their heads down and defending an objective.  Further, the elf warlord on a jet bike, who had a nasty habit of repeatedly turning up in our battles over the past two days, made a last minute objective grab, nullifying the objective our riptide had defended the whole game.

So, despite the untouchable warboss leading his ravening horde of nobz, our irresistible guardian riptide, our air force and many other glory boys, it all came down to a single fire warrior.  He was the last, heroic survivor of his squad, who after the dust cleared was still holding the objective.

We won the game by a single point.

Sportsmanship certificates.

So we were 2-4, winning the first and last games, getting crushed in one and having extremely close games in the other cases.  Both Ethereal Mark and myself were pleased with our showing and decided we had indeed brought the light of the Greater Good to the Sacramento Sector as planned.

There were many awards given out, for painting, best generalmanship of course, and sportsmanship.  We were very happy to again win a second place sportsmanship award.  A munificent award indeed, consisting as it did of the approbation of our dread enemies, as well as commemorative certificates and dice pouches.  We also split a nice gift certificate from Great Escape Games, which we used to bolster our ranks with some meganobz!

Back of the dice pouches we received.

All in all it was a well run tournament and a lot of fun.  The TO Mark B. obviously put a lot of thought into his event, and both he and his volunteer staff worked hard to make their event memorable and fun.  I’m looking forward to participating in the first event of the 2015 Twin Linked Tournament season on March 1st, again, in the Sacramento Sector.  This time I’ll be on the look out for those perfidious gene stealers, and sneaky White Scars trying to fool people into thinking they are Ultramarines just minding their own business!

Here Come the Thunderwolves!

I recently finished painting my second thunderwolf cavalry model the other day.  As cavalry goes, these guys are perhaps a little unusual, but I thought it might be fun to include an iconic weapon of mounted warriors — the lance.  There are no pole arms of any kind that come in the kit, so I took one from a box of amazons produced by Wargames Factory.  I thought about buying some brass rod to make my own, but I had the plastic pike on hand so I decided to use it.

Charge!

For the weapon arm, I used a generic space marine arm that is meant to hold a bolter.  I drilled a hole through it for the lance and used a magnet for the entire arm assembly.  The magnetized arm seemed to me like it would serve several uses.  Being able to remove the arm would make transporting the model to games easier with less likelihood of breaking the lance haft.  Secondly, I can switch it out for a different weapon if I want.  Last and most important, I can pose the arm so I can point the lance in dramatic fashion whenever this guy makes his charge.

“‘From hell’s heart I stab at thee!” and all of that sort of thing.

This is the first thunderwolf I completed quite awhile ago now.  I magnetized his plasma pistol arm and will probably paint up a storm shield arm at some point as another option.  I’ve run him a few times as a wolf guard battle leader, the alpha of a large pack of fenrisian wolves.  Now all I have to do is get a third one painted and I’ll have a minimum-sized, legal unit!

On the move! Swarming past a slightly confused warboss.

Twin-Linked Grand Tournament (Day One): “Return of the Space Communists”

Back in December, I once again made the drive to Sacramento with Mark of the Farsight Enclaves to fight for the Greater Good in the Twin Linked Grand Tournament.  This is a six game, two-day end-of-year team tournament that is a sort of final exclamation point for the team tournaments of 2014.  It is run by Mark Broughton along with many volunteers, and I have to say they all put a lot of thought and effort into making it a fun experience.

Each player fields a 1000 point army with various restrictions from a single codex.  So each team of two players, who are always “allies of convenience” has a 2000 point force, which cannot change for the entire tournament.  Each battle is a custom affair, very different than the usual rules book missions.

Game One: Trying to Bring the Greater Good to Tau and Dark Angels

We all loved the flat-topped, hovering hills in game one.  The goblin artillerists particularly so!

The early stages of the battle featured a close range clash in front of our opponent’s aegis line between the orks and the Dark Angels, who trundled out to meet them.  The orks got the better of the engagement after a couple turns of hard fighting.  The goblin’s mortar fire may not have decided the issue, but it was extremely accurate and helped our cause quite a bit.  We were hoping our two aircraft would also provide further support, but these were neutralized fairly effectively by the marine’s anti-aircraft dreadnought.

Toward the end of the game there was something you don’t see very often:  two riptides fighting it out against each other in close combat.  Not surprisingly to a draw.  (Sadly the picture didn’t come out.)  We ended up winning that battle when time ran out after five turns, and moved on to the next round.

Game Two: It’s a Trap!

The Air Force of the Greater Good has its Great Moment!

This time we faced a Space Wolf & Eldar force that featured three drop pods of infantry on turn one with Eldar fire support provided by a wraith knight and those hated wave serpents, which would be so ubiquitous through the rest of the tournament.

Although our forces tried to bring the much-needed Light of Reason and Culture to our opponents and we fought valiantly, unfortunately this was a tough match-up for us.  Most of the Space Wolves did give their lives in the early going, but by the end of the battle all what was left was our riptide in a corner making a last stand against overwhelming odds.  With his loss all that was left to do was call in for reinforcements and prepare for the next battle of the day.

Game Three: Communists versus Pirates

Right before impact!

Our opponents for the last game of the day were a father/son team of Eldar and Dark Eldar respectively.  This was an interesting game for me because it was the first time either Farsight Mark or myself had faced the new Dark Eldar codex.

This was a hard fought game with both sides taking heavy casualties.  There were a couple of funny moments during the game.  One was when the Eldar shot down our sun shark bomber.  The pilot decided to sacrifice himself for the Greater Good and plowed right into a space dark elf jet fighter and blew it up in a gigantic ball of fire and melted plastic.

Then there was the invincible squiggoth, who the nobz tamed and brought along as a transport instead of their usual but much abused battle wagon.  Their simple strategy was pretty much, “Melta this, hoomies!”  I guess they didn’t count on poisoned weapons though or tremendous volleys from wave serpents.  The beast pretty much shuffled around the board first in one direction and then the other for the entire tournament, not really wanting to get in anyone’s way or cause any trouble, which generally can’t be said for battle wagons.

Super Squiggoth is much friendlier than he looks.

Despite having every poisoned weapon in the world thrown at him, he was the “Squiggoth Who Would Not Die,” even if he ended the fight with only one wound left.

Still, even with the amazing Super Squiggoth and our friend the kamikaze Tau, we still ended up losing a close game.  We had no way to catch or kill the wave serpents arrayed against us, and by the end our opponents were much more mobile than we were and able to position themselves for the win when time ran out.

Next Time: This was a two day tournament so we rested up, consoled ourselves with steak at the local Outback, complained about wave serpents, fed the squiggoth from the in-hotel buffet (no squiggoths allowed at Outback as it turned out), recruited a new Tau pilot, harvested ork spores so we’d have more boyz, and bribed our meks into throwing together more shockingly disposable trukks in preparations for fresh glories on Sunday.

In my next battle report, I’ll write about the second half of the tournament and how we did in spreading the Greater Good throughout the Sacramento Sector.  For the Motherland!

Day Two of the Twin-Linked Tourney is here.

“Make sure you get my good side, Mortal!”

“Make sure you get my good side, Mortal!”

I have been working on painting some Kromlech “Gnaws” lately. They come in packs of three and there are currently two sets of different sculpts available. My favorite right now is this guy with the lovely cluster of cheek warts. I doubt they’ll get much use for me in games, though I might dabble with trying to summon a unit of daemons with my weirdboy and run them as Flesh Hounds of Khorne. I suppose I could also use them as markers when someone gets turned into a chaos spawn. They don’t really look like spawn lacking random eyes, tentacles, shifting mouths and so on, but they are about the right size and have a daemonic look, albeit in a walking mouth sort of way.

My thinking, when I painted them, was on Flesh Hounds so I painted them kind of a rusty red-brown color. But I think with their cheerful, toothy expressions, they’d work well painted as Nurgle Gnaws. In any case, I have two done and I’m working on a third. I’ll need five total if I’m going to use them as summoned hounds.

They’ve been fun to paint. It is nice taking a break from painting models festooned with lots of little fiddly pieces of gear and ornate symbols on their armor. I hope to finish the third model sometime over the weekend, and then work on completing my second thunderwolf, which is starting to come together.

Orks Versus Grey Knights: “Uh, Sir, that’s a little too close.”

As if the Grey Knights didn’t have enough trouble.  They semi-successfully defended “the relic” from a covetous space marine chapter, when a bunch of orks rumbled onto the very same battlefield twenty minutes later.  Almost makes one feel bad for the boys from Titan, except there is no pity in the 41st millennium.

The mission was “Cleanse & Control” and we played 1500 points.  As far as I could tell there were four units of knights in power armor.  Most of them seemed to be interceptors, but how is an ork to tell?  One group sat out the entire game sheltered inside a ruin guarding an objective and presumably trying not to get shot up.  (I imagine those were not interceptors!)  Lord Draigo also graced the battle with his presence.  He was accompanied by a librarian and a host of terminators.  Rounding out the marine forces was a dread knight.

Early stages of the battle: The storm trooper sergeant’s head on a stick.

The orks figured they were going to sneak in right before dawn, after the beakies finished beating the crap out of each other, bundle the shiny relic into a trukk and high tail it for home before anyone knew what they were about.  Consequently it was the Too Many Chiefs detachment from page 102 of the codex.  Pretty much everyone important wanted in on the glory.  Two warbosses showed up, one on an enormous motorcycle and another (Warboss Hungry) in a battle wagon lording it over a gaggle of nobz.  Then there was the jump infantry commander — some junior lieutenant who happened to be borrowing Zagstruk’s stat line.  The less said about him the better.  Otherwise, pretty much any ork who could find a ride showed up.  I’m not sure who the mortar battery hitched a ride with, but goblins are nothing if not resourceful.

Early Battle: The orks spread out all over the field.  They wanted to control the objectives early and take advantage of their mobility before the marines blew up all of their lovely transports.  The assault lieutenant drove his large squad of jump troops down the middle of the field.  He wanted to impress both warbosses.  Further it didn’t occur to him that a small squad of marines would dare bring the fight to him.  But bring it they did.  A group of five or six marines charged guns blazing into three times their number of orks.  When the dust settled all of the orks were dead or routed, including the green lieutenant.  Just as well.  Saved higher command the trouble of executing him for being an incompetent git!

Otherwise the ork plan seemed to be working.  They were recovering valuable archeo-technology out from under the very beakies of the grey beakies!  “Fer da Greata Gud an’ da Revulushun!”

The Junior Assault Lieutenant puts some of his men through their paces in happier days.

Mid-Battle: The goblin mortar battery, for which the orks are (in)famous, was placing accurate hits on strike and interceptor squads.  They weren’t doing much against power armor-clad troops, but this heavy shelling could not be allowed to go unchallenged.  The marine commander ordered his dreadknight to teleport in on the ork right flank.  The artillerymen took one look at that ugly, giant walker shimmering into existence ten feet from their position and high tailed it back to base.  This allowed the Grey Knights to secure an objective valuable both for its skyfire potential and as a treasure trove of hidden supplies, i.e. victory points.

The battle raged back and forth with both sides exchanging small arms fire.  Neither could be said to control the situation.  Despite the early surprise by the orks, the Grey Knights were able to re-secure much of what they had originally lost.  Lord Draigo teleported in with a large squad of terminators, though due to some garbled communications he almost materialized directly inside the strike squad corporal, who was fumbling with a particularly high-strung teleporter beacon.  Still, all turned out well.  The terminators withstood a powerful ork air strike with minimal casualties, and anchored their lines with a force the orks had no means to approach head-on, sideways or any way whatsoever.

Late Battle: The orks did meet dread knight threat.  General Hungry ordered his battle wagon to proceed at top speed toward the ork right flank.  He radioed the bike squad leader to back up his efforts and engage a supporting interceptor squad.  The ork bikers took more casualties from riding at top speed directly through the walls of a ruin than they did from the fight itself.

“Furst man ta krump dat fing gets ta be boss nob!” he bellowed, standing on the cab of his wagon waving his klaw.  Hungry mentally congratulated himself for speaking in orky pidgin, then promptly tumbled off accidentally on purpose with all of the frantic klaw-waving.  He almost got left behind.  Three nobz killed each other in their zeal to reach the dread knight.  Another nob or two died shrieking beneath the walker’s huge blade.  In the end they ate the grey knight driver and spent the rest of the battle fighting over who would get to pilot the new “dread”.

The remaining bikers dismounted and stood in a circle around their leader’s motorcycle, trying to figure out how to get a suit of power armor untangled from his forks.

Meanwhile, Hungry received a communication from the battle analysts aboard his command strike cruiser.  They had determined that the orks had achieved as much as they could possibly expect in their opportunistic raid.  Any further indulgence in battle would most likely only serve the ends of the Grey Knights.  So he sent up the red flare and as one the orks rolled, ran, flew, crawled and swam for home, leaving the marines scratching their heads and wondering what the hell just happened.  Theories included that Tigurius from the last battle summoned the orks using some “unknown and possibly broken” summoning spell.  (Wouldn’t it be typical of Roboute Guilliman to pull something like that?)

In any case, the game ended in a draw.  Happily, I achieved style points by having Hungry fulfill his Saga of the Cowardly Warboss by not putting himself in a situation where he had a good chance of dying. (See post-script.)

Saga of Wat? Yooz can’t do dat in 40K!

Post Script:  As has been mentioned before in the dim recesses of the past, Warboss Hungry (so named because of his appetites for goblin flesh) is rather unusual as ork warbosses go because he believes in using guile, tactics, and intelligence over strength and brute force.  In fact he is secretly a coward, though he goes to great lengths to not appear so.  In fact he is quite well-spoken, speaks several languages fluently and is an avid reader on a variety of subjects.  Shockingly, he is capable of loyalty and friendship, and has close ties with non-orks on many different worlds, especially amongst the Tau.  If he has a failing with his men, it is in the heat of battle he sometimes forgets to “speak orky” and the boyz don’t understand a word he is saying.

The upshot of all of this is Warboss Hungry must be fielded with the “Finking Cap” upgrade to account for his intellect.  He also has the “Saga of the Cowardly Warboss” though if he knew that his reality were in fact a 40K game he’d prefer to call it the “Saga of the Tactical Super Genius.”  Those of you who are familiar with the concept of sagas from the old Space Wolves codex know that the idea is to gain style points by winning the game while playing your character the way your saga says you are supposed to.  If you don’t, then you have to redeem your honor the next time around!

So Hungry’s saga requires that he not subject his person to anything where he has a good chance of getting killed.  Charging a dread knight with a squad of ten nobz?  Send in some “boss nob” mook for the challenge, let the rest of the nobz do the hard work and take credit at the end.  He gets word his powerful nob bodyguard is staging a revolt to replace him as chief.  Does he reassert his authority by fighting it out with the alpha-nob?  No, he “agrees” fresh blood is needed, steps down as boss and then manipulates the nobz into multi-charging three squads of terminators led by Logan Grimnar the next battle and letting nature take its course.  So, you get the idea.

Next Time: My impressions about playing in my third “Twin-Linked” tournament up in Sacramento with my charismatic partner, General Mark, of the Farsight Enclaves.

Twin-Linked Tournament: “The Space Communists”

We made the drive up from Santa Cruz to Sacramento on Sunday to participate as “The Space Communists” in the Twin Linked Tournament, which is basically a doubles format where each player fields 1000 points.  My team partner, Mark, played Tau and I played Orks.  His was a rather eclectic group of blueskins, featuring a little bit of everything and almost none of what people expect, i.e. no riptide, plasma/melta spam etc.  Even his fire warriors were armed with pulse cabines instead of the usual rifles.  The greenskins were pretty standard, three trucks full of boyz, a battlewagon commandeered by the warboss with his nob retinue.  The grots managed to drag three lobbas to the edge of each battle.  They entrenched themselves wherever they could find a good spot to hide so they could be left in peace to mortar both sides indiscriminately.

Game one featured a drop pod army of Ultramarines led by Tigurius allied with Space Wolves.  All I can say about this is that we had two Great Moments early in the game.  First, Longstrike managed to one shot kill their Sicaran battle tank on turn one.  Second, my nobz handily defeated an advancing squad of terminators.

The Tau made some good shots and all of my orks managed to get into close combat.  But the ork boyz couldn’t really shift the advancing grey hunters and it didn’t help that Tigurius was able to keep his squad invisible for the entire battle.  Theirs was a very powerful army and we never really had much of a chance.  We held on until (I think) turn five and were tabled.  The only survivors of the orks were the gretchin mortar team, who legged it because Tigurius frightened them with his scary magic and outrageously long horns.  I believe this team ended up either winning the tournament or taking a close second place.

Even though we got tabled we still had fun.  I certainly got a few list building ideas for the Space Wolves I’m painting, and I’m definitely going to try for Invisibility when I play a psyker who can roll on the Telepathy table.  That is one mean spell!.

Game Two was against another drop pod-heavy army.  This time Salamanders and Dark Angels.  Unlike the first scenario, this was a hard fought game from beginning to end.  The marines were able to come in and do a lot of damage with their flame throwers and other weapons, but not being particularly good in assault we were able to deal with them fairly well once we weathered their initial fire.  Unfortunately they were able to deal with his fairly well too with their dakka.

They had another Sicaran battle tank and again Longstrike blew it up before the beakies knew what they were about.  For the Greater Good!

There was a lot of end-game maneuvering with each side trying to score points by taking table quarters.  The main thing that kept us in this game was the Tau commander.  He sat on one of the objectives and scored points each turn while the orks fought off multiple attempts by the marines to drive him away.  Besides the points, it was a skyfire objective and the enemy feared for their Fire Raptor Gunship.  They didn’t really need to.  Worry more about the nob hiding a power claw up his commissar’s great coat when you go into hover mode!  All of Mark’s crisis suit bodyguards nobly gave their lives but between their firepower and wall of greenskins he was able to score five of the eleven points we accumulated during the game.

When the smoke cleared and the accountants worked their magic, it was an 11-11 tie.  We shook hands and everyone was all smiles.  A great game!

Game Three was against Grey Knights and Orks.  The main unit of the ork army that interested me was a squad of 30 ‘ard boyz led by Mad Doc Grotsnik.  Heavy armor, Feels No Pain, and Fearless made them hard to shift while Rampage made them potentially even more dangerous in close combat.

We were able to kill this unit though it wasn’t easy.  My mortars took their bloody due as Grotsnik’s boys advanced and the kroot took them under fire from their woodland fighting positions on our right flank.  I ended up engaging them with all three units of boyz as well as my nobz, though one unit had to charge sans their trukk.  Dang those Grey Knight back shooters!  Although the combat only lasted for our turn my hands were tired after finishing dicing it out.  I don’t think I would have won without using all four of my squads, as well as thinning them out beforehand with a little help from the kroot.  When the dust settled Grotsnik and his charges were all dead.

The Grey Knights consisted of two large squads of terminators and they did good work in our backfield, though the main battle happened mostly in the center of the board.

This time there was no Sicaran for Longstrike to kill and he ended up dueling a battle wagon full of lootas to a draw for four turns.  Finally some deffkoptas came in out of nowhere and put an end to mighty Longstrike’s reign of terror.  Then my warboss called a Waaagh!, charged about twenty inches with his remaining nobz and blew up our opponent’s battlewagon, taking out about half the lootas as well as all of his own squad and almost himself in the bargain.  Ignominiously he was finished off by some gretchin, who spend most of the battle hiding in reserves only to come in at the last moment to lord it over my warboss!

Another hard-fought game, but as the Grey Knight player pointed out, being a kill point mission this was a tough one for us to win.  The Grey Knight player only had three kill points in his entire force whereas I had four points just in my vehicles alone, and that was what the game came down to.  We were pretty even in terms of scoring points for board control and other things but they were able to score points killing my trukks with easy psycannon shots.  I think they got the fire warrior’s devilfish as well.

Still, I had a rare victory of sorts in that all three of my boyz squads managed to survive the game in one form or another, including one squad of shoota boyz that kited one of the terminator squads for most of them game sniping at them.  “How come you don’t just charge me?” he asked.  “Boss sez use taktics an’ stuff,” my nob yelled back.  In reality they just didn’t want to get within chopping distance of those halberds.

Mark and I were fortunate enough to be voted second place winners in the sportsmanship category, which was fun.  We are hoping to play in the next tournament in December.  Thank you to all of our opponents for fun games, and to the TO Mark Broughton.  Also thank you to Great Escape Games in Sacramento for hosting and the fancy tournament discount.  I was able to score a cheap Space Wolf dreadnought for my collection!

Moar Boyz: Trukk Squad Done

Ork Hard Boy Trukk SquadI finished my ‘ard shoota boyz trukk squad after several months of work.  They are mostly armed with Kalashnikovs, which have proven a robust and effective assault rifle in the far future.  I painted enough orks so that I can run them with just shootas or I can include a rokkit or big shoota, as well as two different choices of nob.  One is decked out in a full suit of armor with a shield made out of a vehicle door.  The other nob is more refined, standing with his arms folded behind his back, serene and seemingly above the fray in his commissar’s great coat.

I used a lot of Kromlech bits for this project.  Armored torsos of course, as well as a few sets of running legs.  The heads were mostly from Spellcrow, as were the arms, which are quite a bit larger than GW ork arms.  Not quite big enough for a nob but larger than a boy.  This suited me just fine because I view these guys as a sort of elite squad, not quite nobz but certainly a cut above regulars.

My nob with the door was a GW fantasy model I added a power klaw and a piece clipped from the rear quarter panel of a trukk.  The commissar nob was a Kromlech model.  This fit perfectly since i try to model my orks as a sort of psuedo-Soviet force.  This works particularly well thematically when they have Guard allies, I think.

Battle Report: Orks versus Orks

1500 Point Armies
Mission: The Scouring (fast attack is scoring)
Deployment: Dawn of War (long table edges)
Night Fighting on Turn One

Army Composition 

Ann’s Orks:  HQs: Warboss “Hungry” and big mek with shokk attack gun.  Troops: two trukk-loads of boyz, ten nobz in a battle wagon, deff dread, ten gretchin.  Heavy Support: lobbas, kannon, zap guns.  Fast Attack: Dakka Jet.  (Jet and gretchin in reserve.)

We concentrated our heavy support, nine field pieces plus an attached big mek with shokk attack gun in the center of the board.  Usually the artillery is spread out.  This yielded excellent firing lanes and the ability to concentrate fire at the cost of a certain vulnerability to assault.  The jet and gretchin were in reserve.

Mike’s Speed Freak Orks: HQ: Mega armor warboss in trukk.  Troops: Five squads of boyz in trukks, ten nob bikers.  Heavy Support: Looted Wagon, zap guns.  Fast Attack: Deffkoptas, warbuggies.

Warboss Mike lined up his trukks and pointed them at my artillery.  His bikers with the koptas, and buggies on his right and left flanks respectively.

Orks versus Orks board with objectives April 3 2014

The board in the very early stages of the battle.

Turn One

General Hungry opened up the game with an artillery barrage, which did some minor damage, but a stray cannon shell did destroy one of Mike’s trukks for First Blood.  Our battlewagon advanced forward guarding the right flank.  The deff dread and both trukks guarded the left flank.  The walker’s job was mainly to protect the artillery park.

All five of Mike’s trukks and his looted wagon roared forward down the center at flat out speed.  His three warbuggies skirted the hill on our right flank.  They threatened both the big guns and also possibly a rear shot on the battle wagon.  Bikers and koptas took us under their machine guns on the left flank.  They wrecked one of the trucks but didn’t do much to the choppa boy squad, who ran for a nearby crater.

Turn Two

Our dakkajet came in on an attack vector and killed a couple of the nob bikers.  Mortar and shokk attack gun fire peppered the mob with a few more wounds.  The rest of our artillery managed to destroy another of his trukks and damaged one of the warbuggies.  Artillery fire brought down one of Mike’s deffkoptas and forced the other two back into the ruin where they spent the rest of the game scoring the four point objective and taking random pot shots with their big shootas.

Our currently non-mechanized choppa boyz assaulted a shoota squad about a foot in front of the zap guns.  We had the better of that fight, but insane courage allowed Mike’s orks to hang about for another turn before we mopped them up.

Another of Mike’s trukks bit the dust when the deff dread ripped it in half between its claws.  The choppa boy passengers must have seen this coming because they jumped out and legged it into the ruin.  This brought them around the sides of walker, and close to the cannon battery.

There was a looted wagon right in front of Hungry’s mobile command post — the battlewagon.  He had a hard time deciding where to take his battle wagon.  By moving forward he was exposing his rear armor to the warbuggies big shootas, but Mike’s wagon had a wrecking ball, which he had to respect.  While Hungry and I were conferring over the radio about options, the driver roared forward and squashed the looted wagon with his deff rolla and trundled another eight or so inches forward.  (We had declared the Waaagh! after all as is traditional when air power arrives.)

The early stages left us with an interesting situation.  Mike had put good pressure down the center of the board with his trukks.  He also threatened both flanks with his bikers and buggies.  We worried more about the buggies on our right because the walker was doing a good job guarding against the bikers, who lacked heavy weapons.  Each side had good chances and I agreed with Warboss Hungry, who said he was “cautiously optimistic,” in that pompously erudite way he talked (for an ork).

Orks versus Orks Mike's orks charge my kannons April 3 2014

Bad news for my cannon.

Turn Three

Our supporting aircraft banked hard right and blew up one of the warbuggies, which were taking the zap guns under fire now.  The mobile command post continued straight forward into and over Mike’s trukk.  Warboss Mike jumped out and waddled as fast as one can in mega armor toward a nearby objective in a ruin.

Mike’s zap guns scored hits against our battle wagon’s side armor and inflicted a hull point.  One of his choppa boy squads and another shoota squad charged our cannons.  The grot crew all ran for it, leaving the big mek alone.  The engineer won the one-on-one fight by  challenge by siccing his accompanying supply of living ammunition on his nob opponent.  Unfortunately the snotlings, once unleashed turned on their former tormentor and consumed him bones and all.  So much for the big mek.  Mike’s victorious axe boyz had a good laugh as they picked their way through the smoking ruins toward our mortars.  All that stood between them and my big guns was a nob wildly gesticulating his power claw at two remaining terrified ork boy underlings.

The bikers opted to turn left toward the center of the battle.  They clearly did not want to risk getting into an assault with the deff dread or perhaps they were reacting to the pressure from our mobile units.  Our shoota trukk supporting the command post went up in a hail of biker dakka.  The commissar nob had the presence to herd his men toward Mike’s zap guns while putting the orange river between him and the bikers.

The battle is still hot but Hungry feels things have swung our way.  (I’m still not sure.)  Mike’s infantry was running riot through our artillery, but we had contained both flanks and the bulk of our mobile forces were doing good work on among Mike’s objectives.

Turn Four

Our gretchin (or as they prefer to be called “objective commandos”) skulked on from the far left and quietly camped around the two point objective for the remainder of the game.

It was “Broken Teef” (or perhaps ‘broken arrow’) for the lobbas.  They laid extremely accurate mortar fire dangerously close to their own position.  Both threatening ork squads took losses and were pinned.  This allowed the deff dread to catch and eliminate Mike’s shoota boy squad, though not before then managed to gun down our three remaining boyz, who were guarding the artillery.

The zap guns finished off the warbuggy squad, eliminating any threat on our right.  Our shoota boyz overran Mike’s zap gun unit but were then themselves gunned down by advancing nob bikers.

Hungry turned the nose of his command post to face the nobz.  He and his men piled out the back and laid into the enemy warboss.  Gunfire ricocheted harmlessly off his mega armor.  Warboss Mike laughed and said, “Come on!”  Mike scissored the heads off two charging nobz but was surrounded and went down in a thicket of axes, claws, gun barrel butts, and a giant poison syringe to the face.  Hungry as usual stood aloof from the fighting, concentrating on the overall battle on his lap top, but did lead his remaining nobz onto the now vacant objective.

Orks versus Orks boyz charging Mike's guns April 3 2014

Here come the boyz against Warboss Mike’s zap guns!

Turn Five

Hungry and I hurried through our turn shooting at dwindling targets of opportunity because Hungry wanted to beat rush hour traffic.  Mike said, “Well, let’s see if I can at least kill some stuff,” and he ordered his nobz across the river.  They lost two of their number due to mishaps in the swirling, deceptively treacherous waters.  Bad luck!  The half-track’s armor was too thick for their guns, but they did manage to immobilize the vehicle by ripping one of the treads off with their bare hands.  We shook hands and called the game at the end of the turn and counted up victory points.

General Hungry & Ann: First Blood + Line Breaker + Warlord + Two Fast Attack + Objectives (5) = 10 VP’s

Warboss Mike: Objectives (6) = 6 VP’s

Project Necron

An acquaintance gave me his necron army some time ago when he made a permanent exit from the world of 40K.  They’ve languished in my storage locker for several months.  If any of my unpainted 40K factions should repose in the gnawing darkness neglected and forgotten it seems appropriate to me somehow that it be the necrons; however, I’ve decided to start picking away at them.  So I’m refurbishing my tomb world a little at a time.  First up, some scarabs.

The tops of a few scarabs were melted by glue.  I used some sand, grass and rocks to camouflage the damage and make it appear as if the scarabs were burrowing under the sand, then emerging to ambush their victims!

My next necron project is refurbishing a unit of 20 warriors.  After that I might start using them as allies for the orks.  Only time will tell.

Chaos Marines & Orks versus Dark Angels

Chaos Marines & Orks versus Dark Angels

1500 Point Armies
Mission: Crusade
Deployment: Vanguard Strike
Warlord Traits: I have no idea what the Dark Angel player rolled. If it mattered then I didn’t notice. I rolled “Hatred Incarnate” which turned out to be kind of handy.

I decided to start playing allies now that more of my friends are building allied lists themselves. In fact my Dark Angel friend showed me some pictures of his well painted kroot he is working on. So I’m using my husband’s Ultramarines to represent my allies while I build my own marines. For now they are the so-called “True Ultramarines”.

Dark Angel Forces
The Dark Angel general was a biker chaplain with a mace of redemption. He led a squad of (I think) 7 bikers, which included some plasma guns, and a banner that gave Feels No Pain. The bike squad was supported by a darkshroud land speeder, which in turn was supported by a biker techmarine. Other forces included a squad of ten tactical marines in a rhino, a nephilim flyer, five deathwing terminators with a terminator psyker, and five scouts.

Orks with Chaos Space Marine Allies
My leader was a terminator Chaos Lord, who I attached to a squad of five havocs, to keep an eye on them. Ten space marines provided further infantry support. The havocs had an attached rhino with a havoc launcher, the other squad a rhino with a dirge caster. I also fielded a helbrute, and an auto cannon heldrake.

The orks were led by a big mek with a shokk attack gun attached to a lobba battery. Troop strength was two small gretchin mobs, and two trukks full of boyz. Finally my forces deployed an aegis line and quad gun.

Deployment
I placed the aegis line across a hilltop along the middle of my long table edge. (We did narrative terrain and then placed fortifications.)

The Dark Angel player clustered all of this forces in an area across from my aegis line, but blocked by a high plateau probably in case I seized the initiative. His bikers were in the vanguard. I figured his plan was to rush his bikers at whatever was behind my aegis and support them with the rest of his army as needed. That is one problem with placing an aegis line. It serves as a declaration of your set-up intentions.

I marshaled all of my chaos marines behind the aegis. It sure was crowded back there! The ork mortar battery was masked behind the hill with an attached big mek spotting on top of the bluff. I placed my trukks on the other side of the battlefield so they wouldn’t be easy first turn targets. Same with the gretchin. Since there were no objectives their mission was mostly to stay out from underfoot.

After we set up, Nick infiltrated his sniper scouts on the hill to the True Ultramarine left. I’m glad I had wrapped the ends of my barricade around against flankers.

Tomorrow
I will post turn one.