Saturday, July 2, 2011

Take What is Ours - Dark Eldar Vs Chaos Space Marines 1500 pts Battle Report

It's been a while since I have written a battle report, and I am now writing one of my more memorable battle reports, as it is a while since I have played a 1500 pts game. Too bad I did not take any pics, as I was kinda in the mood after a few months worth of 40k abstinence/withdrawal. 

Without further ado here's the battle report.

Vespera stumbles upon a minor inconvinience when she came to the world of Arcturus Prime. With the intention of taking the population of the planet for the slave trade of Commorragh, she finds herself denied of her prize when she discovered that Arcturus Prime had fallen to the hands of a Chaos Space Marine warband. Nonetheless she is glad that somehow these inferiors have gathered the population of the planet upon one single collection nd made it easier for her to pick them up, in addition to neutralizing the defenses of the planet. The assault upon what the humans call the 'Golgori Ridge' would be something of a challenge.

"Milady, the Kabal is ready." The twin Haemonculi speaks with a unnerving chorus, a male voice serenaded by a female one.
"Very well then. Tell me more about the part where I will be heading to. I trust that that is where their leaders are located." The display of the gorge shows itself upon the tactical display.
" Yes Milady, the Golgori Ridge is something of a natural fortress of some kind with a mass web of trenches dotting the area. But here," both the Haemonculi pointed upon an sparse land filled with small ruins, "is where the link is weakest. But nonetheless this is also where the leaders of these vermin are located as well and apparently there is some kind of ward around the place preventing us from entering further into the gorge to the captives."
"Well, if the leaders are there, the better. They need to pay for their insolence. They think that these are their prey; they are wrong. The rest of the Kabal I assume are up to the task of penerating the rest of the Golgori ridge?"
"Yes milady." The Twins' reply are as sure as a dagger, sharp but precise.
"Then, let us make their suffering sweeter than the finest wine." Vespera smiles under her faceless mask.

"The Daggers of Venom are coming....." Yggdrasil speaks. The Daemon prince speaks with voices that resembles a booming, melodious choir of chalks scratching upon a chalkboard. Lord Durpyie wince at the sound of the Daemon's voice, and for the human servants their orifices bled with such intensity that when the Daemon Prince falls silent again, the entire ground of the tent is filled with an endless puddle of blood and human excrement. Despite the unpleasant 'company' of the Daemon, but nonetheless its presience is always a tool to be used, not to mention the holy might of the Ruinous Powers tend to lend itself quite nicely into the equation.

"Which direction." Durpyie wields his daemonic glaive, its bellowing growls betray its Khornate origin.
" Southeast of this camp." Durpyie walks out from his tent, his rage simmering within for the interruption by these raiders.

Terrain description
The terrain is somewhat sparse, with very little terrain, and the three largest terrain being a large trench at theuppermost left of the table, a small building at the middle of  right side of the table and a wall that just barely hides the whole length of a raider at the bottom right. The rest are just small terrain that would not give too much cover.

Army Lists

My list:
Archon with Agoniser, Haywire Grenade, Combat Drugs and Shadowfield
2 Haemonculi
2 squads of 3 Trueborn with Blasters in Venoms with two splinter cannons
2 squads of 5 Kabalite Warriors with 1 blaster in Venoms with two splinter cannons
1 squad of 6 wyches with haywire grenades, Hekatrix upgrade and Agoniser in Raider with Flickerfield
1 squad of 7 wyches with haywire grenades, Hekatrix upgrade and Agoniser in Raider with Flickerfield
3 Ravagers with three dark lances and flickerfield

My opponent's list
Chaos Lord with Mark of Khorne, Daemon Weapon and combi weapon
Chaos Daemon prince with Mark of Tzeentch, Wings, Warptime and Winds of Chaos
1 squad of 7 Plague Marines with 2 plasmaguns in rhino
1 squad of 7 Khorne Berserkers in Rhino
2 squads of 3 Obliterators
1 squad of 10 Havocs with 4 Autocannons

Deployment style: Spearhead
Mission: Seize Ground
Drug Roll: 1+ WS

The game actually boiled down to how well we would survive the first turn of our respective opponent's shooting phase. If I do not survive, I will have a ta'uk'me of a time and vise versa.

I managed to win the rolloff of going first and I decided to take the bottom right corner of the table to take advantage of the large building and at least deny my opponent from taking the building for his firebase. In addition, with such a deployment I managed to somewhat secure myself a path via the wall on the bottom left. Thus quarters being quarters, he was forced to deploy at the trenches, and between me and him there is a huge no man's land which will work to both our advantage, but preferably to mine as I need to zoom across the board without much interruption.

Due to the fact that the length of the quarter cuts right through the building, I only managed to deploy a Ravager and half of my raider behind the terrain. Thus I am somewhat forced to make a multiple layer of obscuring targets  (venoms at the front, Raiders in the second layer, and Ravagers last), and deployed them deep enough so that the most of the Obliterators and Havocs will not be able to gun me down just in case he seized the initiative, but close enough so that I am able to take a turn 2 assault by latest. 

My opponent decided that since he does not have the high ground, he bunkered almost everything in the trenches with the rhinos protecting his Daemon Prince. With the deployment done, my opponent decided to roll to seize the initiative, and damn his rolls, he managed to get it. With that, I can only hope that I can survive the shooting onslaught.

Turn 1

There they are...,Durpyie spots the raiding forces flying towards the trenches form the cupola of his Rhino. His retinue of Berserkers growls and barks with rage barely contained. Despite their ferocity in combat, they could not hope to fight against the ranged technosorcery of the Eldar Raiders. Instead, the job should be done with their own divine weaponry. The Obliterators and Havocs braced themselves to fire their wrath upon the Eldar Raiders. With a single commant by Durpyie, the Havocs and the Obliterators fired upon with brutal impunity. Despite the destruction of one of the lesser crafts, the rest pressed on with alarming speed.

The chaos player did not moved, and instead went on to shoot everything at anything that he could. Due to foresight that I have, the Havocs are out of range, thus the Obliterators are only able to shoot the Venoms, and managed to wreck one venom and stunned another.

Dark Eldar
They are expected, that is for sure. The destruction of one of the trueborn venoms only served to reinforced that notion. But Vespera is unfazed. She knows that those inferior weaponry can only do so much to their speed. Her Kabal decided to return the firepower in kind, and suffice to say blood is spilled, or to be exact poisoned and vapourized but not sufficient enough to truly silence the trenchline.

Vespera led the raiders towards the flank, using the terrain to her advantage.....

I decided to move the Trueborns that are out in the open into the building, where there is an objective, and I moved the raiders towards the wall at the bottom right, thereby blocking them from the fulisade of firepower in the next turn.  The Venoms and Ravagers went ahead guns blazing, and managed to murder an obliterator from each squad of obliterators. I decided to leave the Havocs alone, for I can deal with them the next turn for sure. 

Turn 2

Those vermins are coming closer, and they are coming upon him like a ravenous school of sharks.

"Fire at will!!!!" Durpyie can only imagine what will happen when the raiders are upon them.

Again, the Chaos player did not move, and now that his autocannons are in ranged, he decided to focus his fire upon the ravagers, and managed to stun one of them and destroyed another one.

Dark Eldar
Vespera is amazed that these inferiors are that stupid, even by their standards. With sure certainty, she leads her raiders out from the flanks and charged the trenches with unbridled brutality. The wyches moved with an unnatural grace that btrays their capacity to kill, and as they are charging towards the trench, the air is ripe with the searing lights from the dark lances and rains of shards. The slaughter is now in motion.....

I decided that with the ravagers down I need to buy time for the other elements to make their mark. Thus I decided to come out from hiding behind the wall and using the Raiders as a wall, I blocked line of sight of the obliterators and havocs towards the no man's land while not blocking those of my own. With that, I deployed both squads of wyches out from their raiders (leaving the haemonculi in their own raiders) and went ahead towards the trenches. The venoms, Raiders and remanining Raider managed to vapourize one squad of obliterators and stunning the Rhino with the Berserkers. With my shooting done, I went ahead and jumped into the trenches. Despite the failure of trying a multiple charge towards the nearest Rhino and the second squad of Obliterators, I managed (to my dismayal) in destroying the entire squad of Havocs.

Turn 3

Damn these raiders, for one of the searing light hits the hull of the Rhino and causing the machine spirit of the Rhino to be disoriented. The raiders are rampaging through the entire trench, but Durpyie decided that now is the time to launch the counterattack. These raiders will not suffer the satisfaction of winning this battle. The leftmost rhino went ahead, entering into the trench network and spill forth his Plague Marine Mercenaries which proceed to spill the blood of the raiders. A shadow then falls upon Durpyie and as Durpyie watches, the Daemon Prince went ahead and proceed to breath sharp forks of eldritch energy towards the raiders and proceed to wreak havoc among the raiders.

Seeing that the entire battle is now in his doorstep, the Chaos player replied in kind, and moved his obliterators and the plague Marines towards the wych squad with the Archon while the Daemon prince flies towards the second wych squad. 

The shooting phase proved to be one of my most painful, as the Onliterators proceed to burn my wyches to death, leaving the Archon alone in the open. The Plague Marines proceed to fire everything they have towards the Archon, and against all the odds, I managed to make 8 saves, four of which are plasma shots via my shadowfield. But nonetheless, the Rhino then fired upon me, and I failed one of my shadowfield saves, thereby getting a wound.

The Daemon Prince burns the other squad of wych killing 4, and charge the survivors and one of the raiders, killing one more and immobilizing the raider. But nonetheless I managed to pin the Daemon prince down.

Dark Eldar
Vespera's shadowfield is down, but that does not mean that her malice is broken. Seeing the bloated horrors would have turned a lesser mortal, but Vespera is no such mortal and with her veins flowing with both adrenaline and the concoction of drugs, she is all but fearless and proceed on to charge those that have hurt her as they are preoccupied with the rain of poisoned shards. As her Agoniser  wraps around limbs and the exposed neck joints of the bloated inferiors, she pulled with exhilarating grace and the inferiors are eviscerated in a beautifully brutal display of poise and destruction. 

Noticing that my assault element depleting fast, I realize that now I will have to play the shooting war. I disembarked a Trueborn squad and with certainty, I maneuvered two of my Venoms and a Raider to block the Rhino with the berserkers, sacrificing one of my venom's shooting for that purpose. With than in place, I went about moving the rest of my army to take advantage of the exposed Obliterators and also Plague Marines .

With the arrangement done, I fire a lance from my second raider towards the back armor of the Plague Marine Rhino and managed to stunned it. The two Ravagers made short work of the Obliterators and Plague Marine Rhino, and the Venoms brought down 2 of the Plague Marines. The squad of trueborn that just disembarked went ahead and managed to stun the Berserker Rhino. The 

My Archon then proceed to charge into the plague marines, killing 3 Plague Marines, and getting a wound in return. Thank god that the plague marines does not have a power fist or power weapon, or I am already dead. Since he loss combat and Plague Marines are Fearless, he went ahead and made another armour save roll, and even with the FNP, another Plague Marine bites the dust.

Turn 4

Surrounded at all quarters by the raiders, Durpyie fired his combi-melta towards the smaller craft and with a spectacular explosion, the craft crashes down. But to his dismay, several of the passangers are out. But before he could even roar in rage, he saw a trio of raiders walking towards him and fired three streams of light towards him. Durpyie slips down the copula and within the vehicle he could feel the tremor of those weapon's fire. And once again, he is enraged at the fact that he could do nothing more than taking potshots out of his cupola as the machine spirit suffers with disorientation.

Well, seeing that he is surrounded like no other and his vehicle stunned the Chaos player decided that the only thing he could do is just fire his combi-melta which destroyed one of the Venoms, killing two of the Kabalites within. But the Kabalites managed to not be pinned by the explosion.

As for the assault the Daemon Prince managed to kill off the Wyches and also destroyed the raider, but failing to kill the haemonculi within.

Dark Eldar
With a final lash, she managed to kill off the remaining bloated inferiors and as she stood there to savor the victory accompanied by the whistling of poisoned shards in the air and the crackle of lances. A death scream like that of a choir of nails scratching only serves to reinforce her arrogance.

With the obvious outcome of the victory, I decided to disembark my remaining Kabalite warriors at one of the objectives, and proceed to move their Venom trasport towards the orgy of violence. The other vehicles maneuvered themselves to take advantage of the fact that the Daemon Prince is exposed. With a little movement to still restrict the berserker's disembarkation and the rhino's movement, I went ahead and shoot almost everything at the Daemon Prince and the trueborn went ahead and fired upon the Rhino. The Daemon Prince dies, and the Rhino is still stunned.

With that final blow, my opponent concedes.

Objective Taken:
Dark Eldar: 1
Chaos: 0

Objective contested
Dark Eldar: 1
Chaos: 0 

Dark Eldar Victory!

As Durpyie and his Berserkers are lead out from their Rhino, he realized that the entire Raider host are now upon him. The lesser crafts with their menacing weapons, and the larger craft with their heavy weaponry pointed towards them, and raiders with their guys upon them. Surrounded and outnumbered, Durpyie could only wonder what nis preventing them from delivering the final blow.

Soon enough Durpyie could see a fine female specimen of the raider's species with a long flowing crimson cape and a faceless helmet with horns protruding out from either side from the headgear and a whip-like weapon.  The Berserkers charged ahead, but Durpyie know only too well that the efforts are futile and sure enough, the berserkers are mowed down by a combination of beams and shards. The female raider walked towards Durpyie and with a single lash, pulled the Chaos Lord down to his knees. The female raider then places her heels towards his breastplate and pulls herself closer till the faceless mask of malice meets face to face with the Chaos Lord. Before the Chaos Lord could do anything, several of the Xenos wraps him around with whips which shocks his superhuman system to submission and saps his strength from his body. For once, he felt helpless.

"Mon-keigh, you have something I want. And I despise you for taking it away from me." As she speaks, the air surrounding them distorts itself and soon enough a large pass reveals itself. The Chaos Lord could only babble incoherently, his muscle paralyzed.
"I will take what is ours....." As her eyes glowed with blueish malice, several thousand Kabal crafts flies pass them, ready to take what is theirs.

In a way this is something of a textbook example of how to neutralize a Marine Army with Dark Eldar, that being of taking advantage of every cover you could find, even if you have to make some of your own, negating their firepower by crippling them and also maximizing your own advantages. But the destruction of both my Wych squads is something of note, as that is the price I pay for not being able to multiple charge and ending the game earlier. 

My opponent makes a few mistakes in my opinion;

1) Deploying his Berserkers out behind Rhinos during deployment:  If he do that, he could actually do a more effective countercharge that would cause me much pain. In addition, he deployed his Berserkers at the far edge of his deployment zone, thereby forcing his berserkers 1-2 turns of maneuvering, which I punished him for. Stunning his rhino and maneuvering all my Venoms to be able to shoot anything that dares to come out from their transports, I essentially negated his infantry units from getting out and take objectives. 

2)Deploying his Havocs at the edge of the trenches: By doing so he could get more range, but in return I can also reach him with even more weapons. IN addition, I am also able to charge him much more easily. If he deployed them at the depth where the Obliterators are, they would survive for certain and can do something to me.

I also did a mistake that almost cost me the game as well;
1) Never overkill: My Wyches killed the havocs far too quickly (three agonisers will do that), and that leaves me out in the open to be murdered. I believe that I should have kept one of them in the transport and use them as a counterattack unit to his counterattack. Due to that, he almost managed to do something with both his daemon prince and plague Marines.

But suffice to say, this is an interesting lesson for me using my Dark Eldar, and it only reinforces what I always think about the Army: the first three turns decides everything.

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