Friday, March 12, 2010
He was so American it was awesome! Tall and loud with a beard, a trucker cap and said "Man" a lot. Great guy.
Anyway, he'd only played a few games with his Tyranids and I was surprised (and slightly disappointed) to see a lack of Trygons or Mawlocks in his army. But the new Hive Guard were present, as was the dreaded Doom of Malanthai.
We rolled for mission and set up getting Capture & Control and Spearhead deployment.
I won the roll off and chose to go first.
I felt confident that my 1500 points Space Wolves army could deal with the mission, hang onto my objective while contesting his. Claiming the Tyranid objective could be tough, so I planned to play defensively while surging the Rhinos forward in the dying turns of the game to contest his base counter.
Paul's 1500 Points Tyranid Swarm
1 Hive Tyrant with Barbed Strangler (or whatever they call it now), old adversary, some other upgrades
1 Tyrant Guard
3 Hive Guard
2 Zoanthropes in a Mycetic Spore
1 Doom of Malanthai in a Mycetic Spore
12 Genestealers with upgrades to reroll to hit and reroll to wound
12 Genestealers and Brood Lord with upgrades to reroll to hit and reroll to wound
12 Termagaunts with devourers
12 Termagaunts with devourers
I won the roll off and let Paul go first. Paul set up his Hive Guard behind the landing pad to the North where they would be difficult to see while being able to shoot at me with their Impaler cannons. Sweeping round to his Objective in the top right corner were Genestealers, Termagaunts, the Hive Tyrant, Genestealers led by a Brood Lord and more Termagaunts who were permanently left in place for the whole game to guard that single objective.
The Zoanthropes and the Doom of Malanthai waited to deepstrike onto the board from their Mycetic Spores.
I deployed my forces on the bottom left corner with my objective on the edge of the rocks which were occupied by the the Long Fangs, with their Razorback at the top flank to give them some cover and add to their barrage.
I then placed the Blood Claws led by Wolf Priest and Wolf Guard as far forward as possible behind the woods, flanked by a pack of Grey Hunters in a Rhino APC to their right and two packs of Grey Hunters in Rhinos to their left. The Wolf Scouts were held in reserve to Outflank where I forgot about them until the end of the game -doh!
The Tyranid swarm ran forward into better positions, looking to close with the Space Wolves as quickly as possible. The Hive Guard fired at the nearest Grey Hunter Rhino as they advanced around the land pad, but only succeeded in preventing the transport from firing next turn.
The Tyranid army didn't have that much shooting, but their close combat potential was quite terrifying. They'd have more shooting once the Zoanthropes arrived, but I'd have to deal with that later.
The Blood Claws ran into the woods, tempting the swarm to charge them, while the Grey Hunters in their Rhinos surrounded the young Space Wolves, ready to get out of their APCs and charge or drive up, get out and rapid fire, then prepare for a counter-charge. The Rhino's fire their smoke launchers.
The Long Fangs open fire on the Hive Tyrant, their poor aim hitting very little. Their Razorback fires at the Hive Guard to get their attention and inflicts a single wound on the tough Tyranid creatures.
The first Tyranid Mycetic Spore arrives and lands in the space between the advancing Space Wolves and the Long Fangs I had left on purpose for it. Well within 12" of the nearby Grey Hunter Rhino, the Space Wolves within would be able to disembark and charge no matter what happened this turn.
The Zoanthropes targetted the rear armour of the tank and immobilised it with a blinding flash of psychic energy.
The Tyranids continue their advance while the Hive Guard hold position and fire at the Blood Claws along with the newly arrived Mycetic Spore, the advancing Hive Tyrant and Termagaunts. Between them they kill just enough to leave the Genestealers just out of range and unable to charge the Blood Claws.
The Space Wolves trap was sprung.
One Grey Hunter pack to the left of the Blood Claws got out of their Rhino and marched forward, bolters at the ready.
Their empty Rhino sped backwards towards the Mycetic Spore.
The Grey Hunter pack behing the Blood Claws disembarked from their immobilised Rhino and crashed into the Zoanthropes, smashing them to pulp.
The Blood Claws marched out of the woods and right up to the Genestealers, firing their bolt pistols before charging into close combat with the few aliens that remained. 4 Blood Claws were torn apart, but not before the Genestealers were wiped out and the Blood Claws continued their charge on to the landing pad to the North.
This left the Grey Hunter to their left with little to do. Instead of firing their bolters, they ran towards the cover of the landing pad and the Hive Guard's firing position.
This was a big mistake on my part when I could have driven up to the Hive Guard and began firing into them, but I wanted to cover the Blood Claws in case they hadn't rolled high enough to charge out of the woods and into the Genestealers.
The other Grey Hunter squad disembarked into the rocks and gunned down the nearby Termagaunts. I wanted the Hive Tyrant to charge them.
The Long Fangs fired a salvo of krak missiles at the Hive Tyrant, killing the Tyrant Guard and bringing the beast down to 2 wounds. A single shot from the Razorback's twin linked lascannon and it was down to just 1 wound.
The Doom of Malanthai appeared in the centre of the board and unleashed its terrible Soul Leach upon the gathered Space Wolves, killing 3 Grey Hunters by the landing pad and 4 down in the rocks, but the Blood Claws were protected by the heightened Leadership of the Wolf Priest. Angered by this, the Doom of Malanthai launched a Strength 10 psychic fireball against the Blood Claws, killing 5 of them.
The Hive Tyrant charged into the remaining squad only to be cut down by the Wolf Priest who roared in triumph at fulfilling his Saga Of The Beast Slayer.
The Genestealers led by the Brood Lord rolled a consistent number of 6's to leap across the rocks and into the Grey Hunters and began dismembering the squad.
The Hive Guard fired at the nearby Grey Hunters, killing 3 of them.
Faced with the Doom of Malanthai sucking out the souls of my Space Wolves in every shooting phase, including my own, I had to get the hell out of there!
The Blood Claws ran to the right, while the Grey Hunters by the landing pad crashed into the Hive Guard and tore them to bloody chunks.
The Grey Hunters which had destroyed the Zoanthropes embarked inside the new Rhino that had been sent for them while the Grey Hunters in the rocks fought to a man as the Genestealers made short work of them.
The empty Rhino drove at full speed around the rocks. If the Grey Hunters were dead, their Rhino APC may as well try to contest the Tyranid objective.
The Long Fangs got the Doom of Malanthai in their sights. Even with the creature's 3+ invulnerable save, there was no way it would survive 7 Krak missile shots. Every single missile hit and wounded their target and the mutant Tyranid detonated in a shower of straw coloured fluid.
The Razorback took aim at the nearby Mycetic Sport and cut it in half with its lascannon. I was surprised to discover that Mycetic Spores only have a toughness of 4 and can be instantly killed.
It was all over for the Tyranids and all Paul could do now was fall back and protect his objective.
The Genestealers made short work of the last Grey Hunter in the rocks before rushing across the board to catch up with the advancing Rhino APC.
The Termagaunts sitting on the objective opened fire on the Blood Claws, killing all 3 of them and the Wolf Guard in Terminator armour. The Wolf Priest was suddenly very alone.
The Grey Hunters who had finished off the Hive Guard ran towards the Wolf Priest and added him to their ranks.
The Grey Hunter Rhino continued its advance while the Long Fangs took a heavy toll on the retreating Genestealers and Brood Lord with a deadly accurate barrage of 7 frag missiles.
The Razorback targeted the last Mycetic Spore and blew it apart.
Meanwhile the Grey Hunters that had killed the Zoanthropes got in the new Rhino and sped towards my own objective.
The Brood Lord charged the Grey Hunters Rhino, but failed to stop its relentless advance.
The Termagaunts fired on it, but couldn't get through its front armour.
The Grey Hunter Rhino ploughed into the lesser Tyranid creatures who failed their morale check and fled off the table. Meanwhile the Grey Hunters led by the Wolf Priest were able to embark into the Rhino.
The game went on for another turn as the Brood Lord tried fruitlessly to rip open the Rhino transport. The Space Wolves disembarked, ready to strike down the roaring Tyranid, but put him down with their bolt pistols.
The fight was over, the table cleansed of alien filth. The Space Wolves had been victorious, claiming both objectives and losing only 2 units. Then I realised that I'd forgotten to roll for the Wolf Scouts to arrive.
Okay, this wasn't the strongest Tyranid army, but it shows what you can achieve by using all your Space Wolves units to support one another.
The Blood Claws were my 'juicy bone' bait unit to lure him in, the three Grey Hunter packs in Rhinos were my counter attack and the Long Fangs were my fire support. The Wolf Scouts (if I remembered to bring them on) would be a distraction/herder/sacrifice unit.
It's a pretty simple plan, but it seems to work and it consistently worked throughout the weekend.
I think the real beauty of it is that the Blood Claws can really hold their own due to numbers, Wolf Guard, Wolf Priest and melta guns.
I know that sooner or later the Long Fangs will fall foul of Outflanking units, but when I come up against that kind of army, I'll figure out another deployment to beat it.
In this game Paul was amazed at how much cover I used, but it kept my guys alive darting from cover to cover, which really saved my bacon with the Doom of Malanthai blasting apart my Blood Claws.
As for the Doom of Malanthai, Paul expected me to charge everything I had at it. Considering how many Grey Hunters I'd lost to it in a single turn, using my movement to get the hell away was very sensible. I can see lots of people's heavy weapon squads getting in practice to gun this thing down.
Having crushed my first opponent, we broke for lunch.
Stay tuned for my next game against Alex Ley's Daemons.
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