1500 point battle Blood Drinkers v's Chaos Space Marines
Having brutally driven off their former Eldar allies and still enthralled by the foul warp craft unleashed upon them by the Slaanesh Cultists, the Blood Drinkers press on into the desolate dust bowl of Quater Mine; their orders to capture it, the only clear objective in their bewitched minds. Meanwhile a Chaos Space Marine strike force led by the Messengers of Magnus swiftly moves to intercept them.
Bix's Blood Drinkers
HQ - Reclusiarch 'Crixus'
HQ - Librarian Codicier 'Leto'
ELITE - x3 Sanguinary Priests
TRP - Assault Squad 'Idus' (x8 Marines)
TRP - Assault Squad 'Faustus' (x7 Marines)
TRP - Assault Squad 'Tauron' (x5 Marines + Razorback)
TRP - Assault Squad 'Jachin' (x5 Marines + Razorback)
FA - Land Speeder Typhoon
FA - Land Speeder Typhoon
HEAVY - Predator Destructor
Once again this was an annihilation mission; we were playing at Warhammer World, Nottingham, all the 'Gents' having made the journey up to get some campaign games played on the excellent boards they have there and expand our waistlines in Bugman's Bar.
HQ - Daemon Prince 'Ducor the Deceiver'
ELITE - x5 Chaos Terminators
TRP - x9 Thousand Sons & Aspiring Sorcerer (+ Chaos Rhino)
TRP - x9 Khorne Berzerkers & Skull Champion
HEAVY - x3 Obliterator Cult
HEAVY - x3 Obliterator Cult
HEAVY - Chaos Land Raider
The remaining Blood Drinker armour gunned their engines and advanced to meet their old and most reviled foes, firing smoke canisters from their launchers to screen their approach and that of the jump pack assault squads blazing alongside them. I wanted to draw the enemy in, onto my assault troops so they could set about them quickly and decisively.
As the formation moved towards the centre of the mine complex, my two Land Speeder Typhoons skimmed up the right flank launching a torrent of Krak missiles at the Chaos Rhino. The missiles tore the ancient machine apart, completely destroying it and then felling one of the Thousand Son Marines as they rose ominously from the burning wreckage.
The first squad of Obliterators blasted away at Squad Faustus on the left flank of my advance with Plasma Cannons, the entire squad of Battle Brothers was atomised by the searing energy bolts. The second Obliterator squad opened fire on Squad Idus to the right, but their shots went wide, sadly one errant bolt hit the immobilised Razorback and destroyed it.
Squad Tauron pulled themselves from the wreckage but were immediately set upon by Ducor the Deceiver who struck them with the Lash of Submission, hurling the squad across the battlefield and into the gun sights of the Thousand Sons; the ensuing volley of bolter fire from the Sons cut down one of the Marines.
With my advance crippled by the heavy fire and resulting casualties from Tom's deepstrike ambush I was forced to turn troops to counter the threat. Squad Jachin deployed from the remaining Razorback and advanced without fear towards the horror that was Ducor; the squads Melta Gun and Codicier Leto's Infernus Pistol spat molten fury at the abomination, wounding him twice. My Predator turned in place and finished the Daemon Prince off, pulping him with sustained Heavy Bolter and Auto Cannon fire.
My Land Speeders attempted to stem the frontal armoured advance of the Land Raider, opening up again from their flanking position with their Typhoon Launchers; but it's thick armour carved with blasphemous runes, shrugged off the missiles.
Squad Idus swung about and firing their jetpacks they charged at full speed towards the waiting Obliterators; with a violent clash of metal they assaulted the lumbering monsters. Crixus felled one with a skull splitting sweep of his Crozius, the other two beasts where overwhelmed and torn apart by the savage fury and combined might of Marines under the violent thrall of Sanguinary Priest Varro's Blood Chalice and the fiery oratory of Reclusiarch Crixus, chanting the Liturgies of Blood.
The survivors of Squad Tauron re-grouped and with Sanguinary Priest Clodius leading the charge, assaulted into the harassing bolter fire of the Thousand Sons; the Sons 4+ invulnerable save blunted the attack however and my close combat only cut down one of their infernal number.
His Terminators teleported in right on target, bolstering the Obliterator Cults already substantial fire power. Both units opened fire on Squad Jachin, with Plasma Cannons and Plasma combi weapons; the sheer weight of high energy bolts erasing the entire squad from existence including Codicier Leto, whose Shield of Sanguinius was unable to fend off so many hits.
To the front, the gaping maw of the Land Raider spewed forth a raging tide of Khorne Berzerkers who slammed into Squad Tauron's melee with the Thousand Sons; the marines were quite literally chopped to pieces by the blood crazed fanatics.
In reply my Razorback only managed to drop one Berzerker with a Heavy Bolter shot, my Land Speeders once again failed to damage the Land Raider. Squad Idus charged the Terminator Squad and wiped it out in another display of brutally efficient close combat; but the Terminators had done their work and done it well.
The Thousand Sons continued their unceasing advance, turning their attention to my Land Speeders, the Aspiring Sorcerer conjured up a Bolt of Change with his warp witchery, the wailing mass of warp energy bursting through the Speeders light armoured skin, destroying the machines spirit and immobilising the vehicle.
The guns of the Obliterator Cult spoke again, this time sending four marines of the heroic Squad Idus to oblivion; in reply the squad managed to charge the hybrid monsters down and finally silence them.
I conceded at this point, although I think I could have taken down some, if not all of the Berzerkers with what was left of Squad Idus, I didn't want to risk losing Reclusiarch Crixus in what would have been an almost futile gesture and forcing a roll on the campaign wound chart that might have resulted in his loss from further games.
Tom had won a well deserved victory; he had done what I failed to do (despite my plans to the contrary) and fielded an army well suited to Marine destruction. My choice to play all my units on the board despite knowing how much Tom had in reserve was rash, even if you take into account his lucky rolls bringing the majority of his force on in Turn 2.
Also I allowed myself to become stunned by the sheer weight of casualties I was suffering, my armour stopped moving as did my Land Speeders (unforgiveable) and just sat taking pot shots. With the Land Speeders in particular, I shouldn't have got so hung up on the Land Raider, it wasn't performing that well with its Las Cannons and the fire it was soaking up would have been better spent thinning out enemy squads. Tom forced me from action to reaction and that road more often than not, leads to defeat, take the battle to them gentlemen!
One plus, I was again impressed with the damage a double buffed (Chaplain and Priest) assault squad can do in close combat, this being the case with Squad Idus; I just wish I had had the sense to throw them at the Land Raider.
Ah well, the whispering of those ghosts should serve to remind me of these lessons, onwards!