Game 5: Seize Ground / Dawn of War vs. Timaaa King [Blood Angels]
I’d been told by a number of people that Tim is one of the nicest people to play games against, and when this comes from Sean ‘I can still find the humour when I get tabled’ Gill you know it’s high praise. Tim was running a space Marine army which included two Landraiders, two Las / Autocannon Predators, three Deckchair units two of which were in Razorbacks the other in one of the Landraiders, two Landspeeders, A furioso Dreadnought and another combat assault squad of Terminators. I knew from Game two that the Landraiders were going to be an issue, but also that the Terminator could be slaughtered if I could get the Swarmlord into them. There were three objectives on the board, two the Tim placed close the centre and one I’d placed near the extreme right flank (my hope being it was a fairly easy Genestealer bait objective). The other major factor in the game was a massive LOS blocking building near the centre, with an almost one foot square footprint and totally LOS blocking this was going to play a major part in the game. Tim went first and chose to fully reserve his army, a tactic he’d apparently been using in the majority of his games. I Deployed my Tervigon, Gaunts and Swarmlord. The later using the giant building to hide behind.
Turn one was pretty fast, only his empty Drop Pod arrived. Tim placed it close to the board edge hoping to mishap and return to his reserves for future use, but it landed safely in the far left corner. My forces (excluding the DOOM! and Genestealers) walked on the board edge and rapidly advanced, the Swarmlord and Tervigon using the large building to hopefully get cover. The original 11 gaunts heading towards the objective on my right flank.
In turn two the majority of Tim’s army arrived from reserve, only the Landraider with his Terminator and a Landspeeder didn’t appear. They deployed tightly on my right flank. I was a little surprised at this as I’d thought they’d appear to threaten the two objectives in the centre of the board. Then Tim made the one move I’d count as a mistake, on the right flank the Godhammer Landraider containing one of his troop choses had parked almost on top of the objective. I knew from Game two that getting those men out of that Landraider was going to be almost impossible, so I was a little surprised when Tim disembarked them to charge the 11 Gaunts currently holding the objective, especially when the nearby Furioso Dreadnought could tear through them with little effort. In his turn the Marines charged but due to the presence of the Tervigon didn’t manage to break the Gaunts and remained locked in combat. For my turn two all my reserves arrive. The Broodlord couldn’t pass up the opportunity to take out a troop choice before they got back into the Landraider and arrived on my right flank, the other packs came on and headed towards the centre of the board. It rare in a game of 40k that you can point to a single dice roll this early on and say that caused a result change, and I realise that the great “what if” game can throw up lots of arguments, but certainly in a pivot point in the game the Genestealer fluffed it. They only managed to roll a 1 for their fleet movement, pretty much any other result would have meant they assaulted the 5 marines locked in combat with the Gaunts, and although they would probably die in the counter attack from the Dreadnought it would have removed one of Tim’s scoring units on an objective I was largely leaving alone.
Turn three saw the Landraider full of Terminator turn up and take up position opposite the objective closest to Tim’s board edge. The Dreadnought charged into Genestealers and broke them from combat, he then preceded to escort them off the board. Meanwhile the remaining members of the Marine squad got back into the Landraider as it parked on the objective.
The majority of turns three and four were a waiting game. The Swarmlord was tucked in tight behind the large central building near the objective and the Landraider was parked behind a ruin, engine gunning aimed at the same objective, neither wanted to get to the objective too early for fear of the other’s counter attack. The Hive Guard and Predators exchanged fire but was largely uneventful.
Turn five, the big showdown. The Landraider tank shocked its way through the Gaunts and Genestealers and deposited the Terminators onto the Objective, however the tank shock hadn’t cleared enough room for the Librarian and Priest to disembark, the Terminator would still benefit from Feel No Pain, but there was no force weapon for me to worry about. A Razorback also drove forward and disgorged another 5 man troop squad who were close to being able to secure the objective. With a roar the Swarmlord advanced on the Terminators from behind his building, supported by one of the Genestealer packs they charged. Meanwhile the Tervigon also charged into the Marine squad after the Hive Guard blew up the Razorback in the firing turn. The combats were savage and the Swarmlord and Genestealers managed to kill off all the Terminator, whilst the Tervigon killed two of the marines. It was one objective each at the moment but it looked like the Tyranids could take a second if they could shift the Landraider.
Turn six was rolled and Tim concentrated all his available Las Cannons on taking out the Swarmlord, who due to a shocking inability to roll 4+ saves lost his three remaining wounds and died. In my turn the remnants of a Genestealer squad joined the fight with the Tervigon and between them finished off the Marines ….. and that’s where it ended.
It was a really close game, and yes the Genestealer charging in Turn two could have resulted in a very different outcome, but in the end it was one objective each.
…. And yes, Tim is a jolly nice opponent to play against!
Result: DRAW 8 – 12
Game 6: Annihilation / Dawn of War vs. Chris Scothorne[Necons]
The descent had slowed but I was still falling through the ranks, so I wasn’t too happy to find out I was facing my 3rd Necron army of the tournament. A fairly standard core of army, two Lords on Command Barges, three Annihilation Barges, Immortals with Tesla Cannons a couple of Ghost Arks with Warriors and Crypteks embarked and two small scarab swarms. Going second I deployed nothing on the board and neither had my opponent. At the start of his first turn the who army moved on 12” and took up a castling position on his left flank. I was a little surprised that someone facing a horde of Genestealer would castle in the corner of his deployment zone, but wasn’t going to look a gift horse in the mouth. His two command barges turbo boosted 24” into the centre of the board. For my turn the Hive Guard, Tervigon and Swarmlord advance onto the board. Careful to not clear too much distance, I didn’t want his Annihilation barges to be able to get range in his following turn. The Hive Guard then opened fire, destroying one of the Command barges and penetrating and destroying the weapon on the 2nd.
My maths was sound and the Annihilation barges were all out of range for the 2nd turn, the Ghost Arks held their ground. The Lord still in Barge flew up and just managed to clip a Hive Guard killing one of the Squad, whilst the other had to footslog towards the Tyranids. In my turn the Genestealers poured in, a squad from my baseline and the Broodlord from my right flank, right into the Necron castle. The Broodlord multi-charged a ghost Ark and two Annihilation Barges, whist the other squad charged and surrounded the Lord on his Command Barge. The Lord on foot was charged by the Gaunts, with the idea to tie him up until the Genestealers could move to deal with him. The DOOM! also landed near his immortals and absorbed two of the warrior’s essence. The combats went well. One Annihilation Barge was wrecked, the second stunned whilst the Ark had one of its broadsides ripped off. The Lord was destroyed when his Command Barge was destroyed and he had nowhere to disembark to and the second Lord was locked in combat.
Turn three saw the Necrons attack my units which had appeared in their deployment zone, A lot of fire was directed at the Genestealers to prevent them destroying more of the Necron’s fire support vehicles. In the end they were almost wiped out so that only the Broodlord remained, who was them charged by a newly arrived Scarab swarm. However the firepower being poured into the Genestealers and a conveniently placed LOS blocking building meant the DOOM! only had to content with the Tesla fire from the Immortals, which he did with relative ease. In combat the Broodlord managed to destroy a base of Scarabs without being wounded, and the Lord finally destroyed Gaunts, earning the Necron’s their first kill point, but leaving him in the open with a hungry pack of Genestealers baring down on him. In my turn the final pack of Genestealers arrived and immediately charged the already damaged Ghost Ark. The Lord was charged by the Stealers and the DOOM! charged the Immortals. The Hive Guard opened up on a unit of Scarabs that was advancing down the board, but their enhanced cover save meant only a single base was destroyed. In the assault phase the Genestealer both finished off their prey, killing the Lord and destroying the Ghost Ark. The Broodlord continued to fight on taking more wounds of the Scarab Swarm he was engaged with.
Turn four and things didn’t look good for the Necron, I had taken a commanding lead on kill points. The Scarabs charged into the Hive Guard who had fired on them whilst the Necrons who had been ejected from their Ghost Ark combined fire with the remaining Ark to gun down the Genestealers. The Scarabs failed to make any impact on the toughness 6 Hive Guard and the DOOM! continued his extended fight with the Immortals, neither able to get the upper hand.
Turn five, the Necrons advanced more of their fire support vehicles forward to try to get them in range of the main Tyranid force, however we were making good use of the LOS blocking terrain to hide from them. The Broodlord was finally brought down by the Scarabs, but the Immortals still couldn’t get to grips with the DOOM! In my turn the Swarmlord charged the Scarabs fighting the Hive Guard and his Strength 6 attacks made short work of them, and that’s how it ended. It was a fairly comprehensive win for the Tyranids, finally banishing the defeats of games 3 & 4
Result: WIN 17 – 3
Overall I placed 42nd from the 120 players, an improvement on last year’s position. However the best Nid player had eluded me, mostly due to the Necrons of games three and four. I think overall the army performed well. Swarmlord is good but is possibly a bit of a point sink at 1750. I think for 1850 or higher games I’ll use him, I might drop him from future lower point games. The DOOM! was a little disappointing, not really excelling in any of the matches, I think for my next tournament I may try excluding him in favour of some Ygmgarl Genestealers.
Next on the calendar is War of the Roses, followed by the Doubles Tournament and my first competitive games with the new Space Wolf army. I still need to think of a chapter name for my Marines, I’m currently think Skull Reapers but does that sound to Chaos?