February 8, 2014 1850 Tournament, Round Two: Eldar v. Black Templars

February 17, 2014

Round Two: After being crushed in Round One, I knew the second round pairing would be much more favorable. I was still a bit surprised at HOW favorable it turned out to be. A stalwart (and stubborn) Black Templar player with no illusions about their handicaps (thanks to the new C:SM codex), he had a great sense of humor. When he saw me coming, he groaned. I told him I’d buy him a beer if I beat him, and he said, ‘Why Wait?’ His list was something like, 2 Land Raider Crusaders (storm bolter ones), one with a chaplain and a captain(?) along with a mixed group of initiates/templars, the other with a big blob of initiates and templars. He had two rhinos with small tactical squads (plasma gun + missile launcher, I think) and a storm raven with 3 grav-cannon centurions in it. Other than the chaplain blob, I’m only concerned about the centurions.

  • Primary Mission: Scouring (3 Objectives worth 1, 2, and 3 for each player)
  • Secondary Mission: Purge the Alien
  • Deployment: Hammer and Anvil
  • Warlord Trait: Stealth/Move Through Cover in Ruins
  • Night Fighting: Yes (I won the roll to go first but gave it to the Templars)
  • First Turn: No
  • Length of Game: 5 Turns (Lucky; another turn and things might have swung the other way)
  • Result: 10-0 Win (Bought him a beer)

I chose the table side, with the biggest piece of LoS blocking terrain (a rock ridge) on it. There was a decent sized piece in the middle of the board too, but my opponent deployed right on his line, leaving one rhino in the backfield (near an objective) and hiding one rhino behind the land raiders. The centurions started in reserve with the storm raven. I deploy the Warp Spiders on the board (though with a lone rhino in the backfield, they could and perhaps should have started in reserve) in a ruin. I keep almost everything out of shooting range but offer the wraith knight, since it would be getting an excellent turn one cover save and I wanted it closer in order to reduce the potential cover save for whatever it shot at.

My opponent's deployment. Really sharp paint jobs!

My opponent’s deployment. Really sharp paint jobs!

My deployment.

My deployment.

Turn One Highlights: The Templars move everything up and take a potshot at my wraith knight. He makes his cover save. I put prescience on the fire prism and proceed to blow up his chaplain’s land raider (failed cover save and a 4+2 on the pen chart). He loses five or so in the explosion. The wraith knight jumps up onto the ridge but whiffs (or else cover saves are made, whichever). I send a wave serpent flat out up the left side of the board. By the end of my turn, the chaplain’s squad is reduced to just four models (chaplain, captain(?), and two others).

End of Game Turn One.

End of Game Turn One.

Turn Two Highlights: The centurions come on with the storm raven and drop out but scatter directly backward, placing them out of range of anything. He tries to get his chaplain up the board, but rolls poorly for difficult terrain (there’s an invisible crater there). He moves a land raider up and swings it sideways to block a little bit of los. My fire prism jinks a pen from the storm raven. He fires a missile at my wave serpent on the left side, but does nothing to it. A dismal round of shooting. For my part, my wraith knight jumps down to get some sweet sweet land raider action. My wave serpent continues to advance, now followed by a unit of bikes that came in from reserve. For all of my careful positioning, etc., all I manage to do is wreck his backfield rhino. The wraith knight and fire prism both whiff and some half-hearted shots on his centurions yield maybe one wound (can’t recall). To top it off, I FORGET TO ASSAULT THE LAND RAIDER. But I don’t realize it until he goes to move it in turn three and I think to myself, “Hey, that shouldn’t be there anymore…”.

End of Game Turn Two.

End of Game Turn Two.

Turn Three Highlights: The land raider is afraid of terrain. The chaplain moves into the central piece of terrain. The centurions make the wraith knight go, ‘poof’ only because they get to reroll. Out of 15 shots he missed 9 and failed to wound with 2 of the 6 hits…but the rerolls finished off the wraith knight (once again, swinging in the breeze). He dropped the storm raven into hover but it whiffs. Oh–and the multi-melta on his remaining land raider ALSO misses (it missed in turn two also). No other shooting is of consequence. I continue to advance on the left, shuffle my fire prism and night spinner around and largely fail to do anything else. The storm raven jinks the shot from the fire prism and combined fire from the wave serpent and jet bikes fails to take out the marines in the backfield. I waste more shots on the centurions.

End of Game Turn Three.

End of Game Turn Three.

Turn Four Highlights: This is a good turn for the Black Templars. He immobilizes my scytheguard-carrying wave serpent AND my night spinner, and ‘shakes’ my fire prism. The marines in the backfield bravely assault the wave serpent, but only manage to take one hull point off of it. I disembark the scytheguard in order to try to crack the land raider (not likely, and I probably should have stayed in the immobilized serpent). I pull the fire prism back and take a snap-shot at the storm raven but miss. The wave serpent and jet bikes finally clean up the marines in the backfield, and I take out the chaplain and the rest of his squad.

End of Game Turn Four.

End of Game Turn Four.

Turn Five Highlights: Rather than disembark, the land raider plays ring-around-the-rosy with the terrain. The centurions line up on my wraith guard and (no surprise) do a fair amount of overkill. The storm raven switches back to flight mode and shoots at my other jet bike squad. I lose one, but they make their leadership. I’m not sure if this was clever or not, but he doesn’t disembark his marines from the other rhino. I think he was counting on me to shoot them out of it (and onto the objective), or he was playing for a turn 6. I disembark dire avengers onto an objective and reposition the other wave serpent and the fire prism. The fire prism fails to penetrate the land raider. One wave serpent blows up the rhino and the other serpent (and the dire avengers) combine to destroy the squad. For ‘fun’ (and because they haven’t done anything all game), the warp spiders fire on the storm raven and manage to take a hull point with a glance. I turbo-boost jet bikes onto the objective marker where the rhino was. Luckily, the game ends. Had it continued, I would very likely have been pushed/shot off of key objectives and in danger of losing (not necessarily losing, but in danger). My opponent was a good sport and a great guy. When I found out he was a veteran, I was more than just happy to buy him a beer, I was honored.

End of Game Turn Five.

End of Game Turn Five.

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