40K Narrative Campaign Week 22

It seems like just last night I was typing up a battle report…

It seems like just last night I was typing up a battle report, but since we played another game of Warhammer 40,000 and I do the best job when I write at least a first draft immediately after the game, I’m spending New Year’s Eve blogging. Fear not #Fitfam although I’m also drinking I have plans to be healthier and fitter in 2023.

Of course I plan to paint more next year, doesn’t everybody? I did pretty good at my 2022 hobby goals but I never painted any orks. Both Bill and Kris are painting orks now it seems. They even played each other today, I don’t want to spoil it, but the orks won that game. Aiden ditched us to play some other Chris at Warhammer 40,000 so it fell to me to take on Devin again with his ever more powerful Chaos Lord, apparently it is good not turning into a Chaos Spawn.

Pre Game

When I learned I was playing Devin I could have changed my army list. It was far from optimal but several units are resting while I paint additions to them or in the case of the Plague Surgeon the entire model, so this left McFly, Rabban, Gangrene, and the Cancer Cell to take on a very powerful Chaos Lord. How powerful, powerful enough to have a page of special rules and ten campaign points by himself!

This made me the underdog, even with the newly heroic McFly, no one is afraid of him or my latest five plague marines or my paltry ten cultists. Actually the unit that seems to actually put fear in the enemy when he gets into close combat is the Hellbrute, hammer time can do a lot of damage.

The mission this week was Dangerous Ground. Before our game I announced I was spending one requisition point to follow the path of Corrupting the Weak and after my lack of success at Culling the Horde last week I took “Sow the Infection, Harvest the Plague” as my agenda. A lot of agendas and other parts of the game work better in slightly larger games but once again we were a combat patrol of 25, actually 24 power. In the future I apparently must take as my agenda one of: Break their Spirit, Subterfuge, or Poison their Minds in order to earn Corruption points. I never did anything with my Inflection points, but you can enhance a pyscher with requisition points and corruption points according to some campaign book.

I of course lost the roll to go first and in order to keep the game moving I chose to just stay on my side having set up the terrain pretty symmetrically. This wasn’t my lucky day, but I did do a better job of following and remember the rules so it was basically a moral victory as we had to hurry at the end because it was New Year’s Eve.

Battle Round One

You can see above how the army was deployed. I put Gangrene in the rhino and since I had extra command points I thought of starting them in reserves but I just am not that strategic. I need to give more thought to my army and tactics in the new year. Usually I just show up and wing it. Devin as an Alpha Legion player often does all sorts of redeployment shenanigans so you need to set up conservatively. This time all he did in his command phase was move one unit forward. In fact his whole turn consisted of moving and most everyone advanced.

Death Guard Turn One

Since I had seven command points, eight actually at the start of my turn I decided to order a Blight Bombardment. I think this game is a little small for a 3CP stratagem and I always wanted a Lord of Virulence but have yet to paint him. I think my strategy was not terrible the plan was to cover one objective with my token, so I chose the objective that Devin had advanced the furthest towards but in hindsight he and I think I should have put the bombardment on the right flank instead.

My rhino with it’s enhanced havoc launcher and damaged combi-bolter managed to kill at least two cultists. The cultists actually failed leadership too so I think three more actually died or ran away. No victory points can be scored in this mission during the first turn.

Battle Round Two

To start turn two, the cultists tried to come back from the dead. I had killed at least two but several died after they failed morale. Thanks to Tide of Traitors and apparently a tiny table four cultists returned to battle at the front of the squad, which actually effectively moved it further up the board.

The smaller squad in the picture is actually Traitor Guard and they have a sniper rifle among other tricks, it kept missing or failing to wound though. Devin also has several melta guns including a combi-melta on his rhino. His actual cultist squad has two of every special weapon those flamers combined with “Let the Galaxy Burn” and some good rolls and re-rolls meant my rhino took some damage but it didn’t die. If I knew every gun in the army was going to shoot the rhino I would have popped smoke. I think next time I put a squad in the rhino I just pop smoke after roaring forward.

The Chaos Lord charged the rhino, but still it lived. The Chaos Lord has so many special rules, he is tough to kill but he is no Lord Gogo.

Death Guard Turn Two

So if you haven’t guessed the Blight Bombardment did nothing, hence my theory it would be better in a larger game when the battlefield has more troops on it. It did redirect the Alpha Legion forces, but as they rely heavily on one model, I should have sent it his way, but he can teleport or something. I probably shouldn’t have played it at all, there are better options in the stratagem deck.

I advanced my Hellbrute as the mission was to just stand beside four objectives nine inches from the centre of the board, perhaps holding off on the bombardment for another turn might have worked better but usually you have the most command points on the first turn, so the cost seems less costly. This game I forgot zero psychic phases, I actually used my crib sheet. It doesn’t have all the answers but it helped me remember to use both offensive and defensive psychic powers. I actually failed a pyschic test with snake eyes, but I rerolled. Plague Wind thus killed three cultists and I killed two more with Smite.

Gangrene got out of the rhino which I left in melee with the Chaos Lord. This made it hard to shoot him but he also was stuck hammering my empty personal carrier. He destroyed it and I made it explode but he has a rule or a relic that lets him shrug off even mortal wounds. That had been my plan to kill him and would be my plan again next time, but he was both lucky and Devin used a lot of command points on that one model. A different mission and you might be able to ignore him and win.

Having played over twenty games in this campaign, I prefer the ten man Plague Marine squads, but in the small games five model squads is more practical. Having extra models enhances their survivability. Of course I still need to paint a lot more special weapons, Gangrene is pretty sparse with just a single melta gun, but they were happy to not fight the Chaos Lord and instead shot and then charged the cultists. Their flakk armour actually made some saves but I finished them off and consolidated into melee with the Alpha Legion / Fallen rhino as seen below.

This turn we did do the scoring, I didn’t earn that many points towards my agenda tally as cultists do not have Contagion of Nurgle but I did take the early lead 15-5 on the big board.

Battle Round Three

In this turn the Alpha Legion did a lot of shooting killing one cultist and one plague marine. The Chaos Lord charged the cultists and I played Overwatch, I even rolled a six for the number of flamer attacks but ultimately I accomplished nothing. I strongly prefer the plague spewer or for models that can get one the heavy flamer. That may actually deter some charges or make someone pay. As it is strength four just doesn’t cut it, but that is the best cultists can do. Today I learned I can field Gellerpox Infected and they can have a heavy flamer.

His squad of Legionaries also got out and charged, hence the extra shooting with an additional squad on the board. They have both a power fist and a heavy chain axe, that did some work. I decided to fight back with my cultists, this turned out to be a mistake, not only did they not do anything as the Alpha Legion Chaos Lord has very good saves, but the rhino was still in melee with my two remaining plague marines and killed both them after I failed all my armour saves. This was Devin’s highlight of the match.

I decided as I still had a lot of command points to play Insane Bravery on the cultists which I just realized was illegal as they have a battle scar which prevents it. Oh well so much for getting all the rules correct for an entire game.

Death Guard Turn Three

It was around this point that Bill announced he had to leave soon and he was my ride. So that affected my strategy and we basically rushed so Devin could get his kills as I did not think I would win after this turn because although I remembered it my Smite psychic attack was denied and that was my plan to kill the Chaos Lord. I also had the Orb of Decay and some stratagems but now command points were in shorter supply after I illegally played Insane Bravery. I failed to cast Plague Wind at all and this is when I started thinking today was not going to be my day.

Rabban, even though armed sub-optimally in my opinion, killed a cultist. I declared two charges as remember Bill said we had to speed things up, I was considering advancing or just avoiding melee with his Chaos Lord, but McFly charged in to try and save the illegally insanely brave cultists. The Beast Rabban also charged.

Although my Malignant Plaguecaster got to fight first, he failed to do anything as Devin has many ways to protect his Chaos Lord from relic armour, to invulnerable saves, to shrugging wounds, to command re-rolls. He also has the Mark of Slaneesh so he smote McFly who really should stick to casting psychic powers. Next game he will and Devin is encouraging me to requisition a Relic of Decay for him as the ruling seems to be the Orb of Decay is not a Relic of Decay. What say you Internet?

The Cancer Cell of course did not hurt the Chaos Lord either but my Hellbrute pasted two cultists.

Battle Round Four

We really hustled through the last two turns. Devin even thought he had another whole turn as he failed to table me, but I pointed out I was taking notes and had a turn marker on the table. But the score at this point would have been 35-25 so not terrible but with my Malignant Plaguecaster now gone the game was basically over and I sacrificed him mainly because it sped up the game but in theory he could have done 12 wounds to the Chaos Lord.

My cultists obviously died and my Hellbrute started taking wounds but he has eight. The melta guns started missing and Legionaires charged which resulted in Rabban killing three of them.

Battle Round Five

The Chaos Lord charged but failed to kill the Hellbrute. This was the end of the game as far as Devin was concerned but I pointed out he got to fight again in my half of the turn. The Hellbrute gave the Chaos Lord a scare getting two wounding hits through but then a command point was used, but D6 wounds from the hammer is no joke. Having the ability to shrug off wounds definitely helps.

Post Battle

Not that anyone cared to ask, but I think I ended up with six in my poison tally earning me nothing. The final score was 50-30 so a respectable performance by the underdog. Without any corruption points I couldn’t use the new fancy requisitions, but as Devin seems to imply I could requisition the Relic of Decay that is Plaguecaster or Sorcerer only. Also after doing all the post match book keeping I picked up no new battle scars, made Rabban MVP and after some deliberation enhanced his engines as speed is also in short supply in my Death Guard army, though I was tempted to enhance a weapon.

I will probably write another blog post in the future detailing my plans for the new year as I already partially summarized my painting accomplishments in the previous post. If you have thoughts on this battle report or hobby goals to share for 2023 you can leave them below.

Author: Muskie

Making the Internet better since 1995.

3 thoughts on “40K Narrative Campaign Week 22”

    1. You’ll like the post I’m working on now and the one I need to write next maybe. All this blogging to start and end the year is cutting into my painting. But I want to start the year strong in the blogosphere.

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