Friday, June 10, 2011

Battle Report #14: Dark Eldar vs. Imperial Guard (with pictures!)

Well folks, the army is fully assembled, and mostly painted, and that means that I'll be playing a lot lot lot of games with the Dark Eldar in the future.  I figured I'd kick it all off against an Imperial Guard player, one of the most competitive players at my LGS.  He has a non-traditional Guard list, with lots of Blobs, but still lots of support, and quite a few vehicles.  Since Guard is what I'm most nervous to play against in a tournament setting, I'm glad we could play this game.

The lists (at 2000 points):

Dark Eldar (Kabal of the Awesome Sauce):

Baron Sathonyx

7x Incubi // Raider w/ Flickerfield, Grisly Trophies, Aether Sail

19x Hellions w/ Helliarch
5x Warriors w/ Blaster // Venom w/ 2x Splinter Cannons, Grisly Trophies
5x Warriors w/ Blaster // Venom w/ 2x Splinter Cannons
5x Warriors w/ Blaster // Venom w/ 2x Splinter Cannons
3x Wracks // Venom w/ 2x Splinter Cannons, Grisly Trophies

6x Reaver Jetbikes w/ 2x Heat Lances
6x Reaver Jetbikes w/ 2x Heat Lances
Beast Squad w/ 3x Beast Masters, 4x Razorwings, 5x Khymerae

Ravager w/ Flickerfield
Ravager w/ Flickerfield
Ravager w/ Flickerfield

The Guard (from memory, feel free to correct me Eric):

CCS w/ Straken, 3x Melta Guns, Astropath, Body Guard, Medic // Chimera w/ Multi-laser, Heavy Bolter
CCS w/ 4x Plasma Guns // Chimera w/ Multi-laser, Flamer

Infantry Platoon w/ 3x Infantry Squads (30 dudes), 3x Melta Guns, 3x Autocannons, 3x Power Weapons, Commissar w/ Power Weapon

Infantry Platoon w/ 3x Infantry Squads (30 dudes), 3x Melta Guns, 3x Autocannons, 3x Power Weapons, Commissar w/ Power Weapon

Infantry Platoon w/ 3x Infantry Squads (30 dudes), 3x Melta Guns, 3x Power Weapons, Commissar w/ Power Weapon (Al'Raheem's squad)

Platoon Command Squad w/ 4x Melta Guns // Chimera w/ Heavy Flamer
Platoon Command Squad w/ 4x Flamers // Chimera w/ Heavy Flamer
Al'Raheem's Platoon Command Squad w/ 4x Melta // Chimera w/ Heavy Flamer

Leman Russ Battle Tank w/ Heavy Bolter

The Mission:

We decided to try Nova format, since neither of us had tried it before.  Here were the results:

Primary:  Table Quarters, as determined by total victory points in each quarter
Secondary:  5 Objectives (one in each table quarter, one in the center)
Tertiary:   Kill Points

Victory Points as tie breaker

We rolled off, and he won, despite the Baron's +1.

Combat Drugs:  "1"- fleet 3d6 pick the highest (which I might add is useless, since none of my units can use it- Hellions can, but the Baron for some stupid reason doesn't, and so they can't use it.)

Our Deployments:

A note:  These pictures are all pretty high resolution- I figured out after the game how to make them less than 5MB-size pictures, so expect that in the future.  If you want to see more detail CLICK ON THE PICTURES!

Here's the overview.

He deployed like so, leaving Al'Raheem (duh), the Plasma CCS, and the PCS w/ Flamers in Reserve

I deployed like so, keeping the Hellions in cover attached to the Haemonculus, with Reavers behind, Baron hiding with the Wracks, Venoms getting cover from the bikes/Hellions, and the Ravagers getting cover from the Venoms/Reavers/Hellions.  Incubi Raider is on the right to get some flanking action.  I kept my beasts in reserve because I didn't know where else to put them, lol.

Imperial Guard Turn 1:

He just sat there and shot at me, shifting a few tanks just slightly.

He was able to immobilize one Ravager, and kill about 5 Hellions because of a stupid wound allocation mistake that he was able to capitalize on (I took my first two casualties out of cover, making the majority of the squad not in cover, and a Gryphon vaporized three of them).  He also shook one of my Grisly Trophies Venoms.  A few random Reavers also got dusted.

Grisly Trophies were very worth it this turn, as his Gryphons were pinning me at -1 to Ld, and I failed a lot of rolls- the rerolls were money.

So, since he didn't move around at all, I took a picture of my own casualties, since it's more relevant.
 Dark Eldar Turn 1:

I moved my Baron out from the Wracks (taking the Pain Token) and into the Hellions, who all moved up, but stayed in cover.  The Haemonculus left his Token with the Hellions (so now that unit had FNP + FC).  The wracks/haemon got into their venom.  The Ravagers moved up, ready to shoot, as did the venoms.  One squad of reavers boosted to the left, and the other to the right.

Shooting took its toll on Eric's front Blob (I put everything into them), and took them out of coherency. Ravagers epic failed.  I think I shook his Melta PCS chimera?

Sorry, no picture this turn.

Imperial Guard Turn 2:

He rolled for reserves, and only his Flamer PCS came in, and decided to pick on my mega-turboed Raider. His Melta PCS also came over, disembarked, and decided to try to melta the Raider.  Everything more or less stayed where it was.  His front Blob had to move back into coherency, and were forced to move out of cover to do so.

In shooting, he ruined another Ravager, took a weapon off a venom, and took the weapon off of my Raider.  He also ran the left-most squad of Reavers off the board, and nearly pinned my Hellions.  Grisly Trophies FTW!

You'll notice the rear Ravager is out of range the entire game.  He failed to do anything of value.
 Dark Eldar Turn 2:

So, I found myself with a tough decision:  The hellions could easily jump in and kill his front Blob, but they would then be left out in the open.  They were my main way of capturing a table quarter, and I didn't see any imminently bad things if I just sat there and shot.

So, I just shifted around a little bit, and got ready to rapid-fire his Blob from the Venoms, and got the Hellions ready for it as well.  The beasts came in, and got a bad fleet roll.  The Incubi got out, ready to kill a Melta squad, while the three remaining Reavers decided to shoot/assault the dudes inside the Flamer Chimera.

In shooting, the Reavers fragged the Chimera, killing a few of them, as well as an Incubi.  Ravager shook his Leman Russ.  The venoms + warriors + hellions killed a bunch of his Blob in the open, and he went to ground.  His flamer PCS ran off the board from failed moral.

I [should have] assault moved the reavers into the crater, but didn't really think of it.  The Incubi went and killed the Melta squad, gaining FNP.  They also Stunned the Chimera (I put most of my attacks into the Chimera with the off hope that I'd get stuck into combat- it didn't work, lol)

Well, lots less guard this turn.  Still, it seems we're at an impasse.
Imperial Guard Turn 3:

Al'Raheem and the Plasma CCS squad both failed to come in (he rolled a "1" for both).  I was alright with that :)

He got Straken out, and got ready to shoot my in cover Incubi.  His nearest Gryphon got up close to my Incubi, ready to flamer them.

In shooting, he failed to do any damage to the incubi with his Heavy Flamer, but Straken's squad shot w/ 3 melta guns + plasma pistol, hit all four times, and I failed all 4 saves.  They failed leadership, and since they couldn't regroup, I just removed them.  His front blob failed to take the 'get back in the fight' order, so they stayed put.  He also killed three guys from the Beast squad, who passed their pinning/moral check.  Also, my Wrack Venom was wrecked, as well as a Warrior Venom.  So, lots of dead evil elves this turn, heh!

Well, at least my Ravager is still alive?  lol
Dark Eldar Turn 3:

I mostly stayed where I was.  The Beasts rolled snakeeyes, and a bad run roll again, and mostly stayed where they were.

The plan was to shoot his quickly receding blob as much as I could.  At this point, he wasn't really advancing, and until I knew where his Al'Raheem squad was coming in, I didn't want to make any big moves.  Again, I wanted to make sure that I wasn't caught out in the open with the Hellions.

So, I mostly stayed static.  The Reavers (foolishly) turboed across the battlefield, rolling poorly against his blob they hit, and accomplished nothing.  The weaponless Raider moved over to help out with the Grisly Trophies bubble next to the Hellions.

In shooting, I continued to whittle the front squad down, and started to target his rear Blob squad.  Both were reduced, but not drastically.  My Ravager was able to weapon destroy/immobilize one of his Gryphons (side armor FTW!)

Dear Al'Raheem:  please come in this turn.  Love, Xaereth
Imperial Guard Turn 4:

Both of his reserves came in, with Al'Raheem coming in on my left board edge, and the Plasma squad coming in behind the big hill on his own board edge.  He was out of coherency with his back blob squad, and so had to shift around again- he wouldn't be able to shoot his autocannons this turn.

In shooting, Al'Raheem's squad shot out the back of their chimera, and exploded my Ravager.  Other shooting included his immobilizing one of my remaining Venoms, and killing a bunch of Beasts again, he forced them to run, and they almost ran off the table.

In assault, he got his front (small) blob into the warriors from the wrecked venom, and wiped them out.  Straken's squad also wiped out the Reaver squad.  At this point, I'm hoping that we don't go to Kill Points for the win (Tertiary).

Heh, beasts are doing a lot this game.

Dark Eldar Turn 4:

My goal was now to draw on Table Quarters, and win by Objectives, since Raheem + Platoon outweighed any single unit of my own, and it would be difficult to hold three when he was so heavily entrenched in two.  So, I shifted the Hellions a little bit, and got my lone mobile Venom in the way of one of his Chimeras.  The beasts regrouped, and moved 3".  heh.

Shooting killed yet more of the blobs- at this point the front 'blob' was a single sergeant, and the back blob was down to an autocannon and a couple guys, both of which had gone to ground.  My army is looking pretty whittled at this point.

Run beasts, run!  Try to accomplish something.
Imperial Guard Turn 5:

He moved his Plasma CCS up 12" and popped smoke in the right table quarter.  The blob shifted into the bottom left quarter.  His chimera attempted to ram my mobile Venom, and I dodged it.  His shooting didn't do much, and it was my turn.

Of note, he picked up his lone sergeant from the front blob in an empty Chimera- lots of Victory points for a single guy, lol.

If the game ended turn 5, I could win the whole thing.
Dark Eldar Turn 5:

I continued with my plan:  draw the table quarters, and win by objectives.  So, I moved the majority of the Hellions + Baron into the top right quarter, made sure the Wracks held my objective in the bottom right, and the Hellions had the middle objective as well.

I shot and wiped out his rear blob squad.

The beasts were barely able to get into Straken's squad.  The combat was drawn 4-4- the beasts would have won easily but 3 of the Razorwing bases couldn't strike.  They would finish Straken off quickly if the game continued.

If the game ended here, I would win.

We rolled, and ....

The game ended.

Table Quarters:  2-2
Objectives: 2-0 (Dark Eldar favor)
Kill Points:  Not sure... probably in the Guard's favor tho.

 Results:  Win for the Dark Eldar!!

It was an interesting (and fun!) game, and I can honestly say that I didn't picture the game going the way it did.  We kind of just had a shootout, and I killed a ton of Blob guardsmen.  He should have been going to ground every turn and then giving the 'Get back in the Fight' order, but only remembered to starting doing it towards the end of the game.  I was happy at how survivable cover can make vehicles, and how tough it is to kill FNP 3+ cover save Hellions.

Man of the Match:  Well, wargear isn't really a 'man', but since some Grisly Trophies used to be men, I figure I'll use it.  15 points of wargear really saved my bacon this game, letting me reroll leaderships all over the place, which I needed.

My Thoughts:

Well, the Beasts would have been a lot more helpful if they hadn't been in reserve.  They could have finished off the blobs that the splinter weapons had softened up.

I really used the Reavers poorly this game.  When I was actually smart about them, they killed a vehicle and would have killed that vehicle's squad.  I need to keep them next to the Grisly Trophies though henceforth.

My firepower was withering.  Seriously, killing nearly 60 guardsmen bunkered in cover isn't even what they do best- can't wait to try 'Nids, heh.

Incubi died in a rather disappointing manner.  I wanted to see the showdown between the Incubi and Straken's CCS, which we were robbed of by my failed cover saves.  Ah well.

Overall very fun game, it's always close with Eric, and I was happy to get in a game against a tough list to start my Dark Eldar off!

Expect lots more of these batreps- every game I play, hopefully.

And my army will be more and more painted as well, heh.

If you enjoyed this batrep, there are plenty more with my other armies (lots and lots of tournament reports as well) at the link on the right side of the blog, or you can click here.

Thoughts?  Comments?  Questions?


ServvsUmbrarum said...

Thank you for the battle report. Gives me more input on not only the DE but also the IG.

"The Initiate"

Smurfykins said...

1st Turn where the Haemy "leaves" his pain token with the Hellions - Not allowed as you are required to keep as close to even Pain Tokens to be split between the unit and detaching IC as possible, so somehow the Hellion unit has 2 Pain Tokens now and the Haemonculus left with 0? Should've been 1 and 1.

So many people get this wrong.

Xaereth said...

Lol, including you.

Haemonculus leaves the unit, giving them the pain token.

THEN, the Wrack unit leaves the Baron (who they were with), leaving him (alone) with the Pain Token.

So, the Baron has a Token, and is by himself.

The Hellions have a Token, and are by themselves.

The Baron then joins the Hellions, and they have a combined 2 pain tokens.

I appreciate the superior attitude though.

Smurfykins said...

It's not intentional (the attitude - have had one of those days), but the whole process is loopy, of course, entirely my bad

Commander_Vimes said...

I made several mistakes in this game that really hurt me.
The first was accidentally taking the taking the Steel Legion blob out of coherency on turn 1 even though I didn't need to. To compound that mistake I opted to try charging them at the Hellions when I rolled a 6 for difficult terrain, though when I thought about it later I knew there was no way I could have been within 12" given that I'd been out of lasgun range the previous turn. Realizing I was out of charge range, I decided that it would be best to get them back into cover, but despite a successful Run! Run! Run! I could only move three inches and the whole fully functional blob spent the turn contributing nothing and leaving itself exposed.

The next mistake was boxing in Straken's chimera. I needed to get him out to at least shoot the incubi, but his chimera was stunned, and there were gryphon's blocked both sides so he couldn't get line of sight. I had to move a gryphon to get him into position, trading its very effective barrage for a heavy flamer shot on a few incubi with feel no pain. Deploying my vehicles is something I need to work on.

The last big mistake was completely misusing Al Rahem's platoon when it arrived on turn 4. Having it show up late sometimes is something I have to accept. I should have been running them for the objectives much sooner than I did. Even on turn 5 I had a shot at claiming two objectives. Al'Rahem's chimera could, I think, have moved to get in range of one, and there was one lone Valhallan sergeant in sitting close to an objective who I should have used Get Back in the Fight to unpin and take it.

If I had been playing closer attention to the second set of objectives I might have forced the game to kill points, where I was ahead. Against an army with as many kill points as the DE had, I should have been playing to draw the first two objectives from the start.

Also, this game and others, have made me rethink Al'Rahem's platoon. It's almost a quarter of my army at 440 points, and it's not uncommon for them to arrive late, or for the game to be entirely focused on the center, or in this case both. I don't think I can afford to play games with a quarter of my force not contributing.