Commander Farg Woolstrop was uneasy, he had received orders to advance and engage all armed forces within the grassy plains of the agri world Hemmerdale as a suspected enemy invasion was thought to be imminent. Advancing in good order using flanking fast attack vehicles with his support assets to the fore he felt confident his detachment would prove a deterent to any would be aggressors. Suddenly a force of Adeptus Sorritas emerged out of the gloom and engaged his command and he was forced to return fire......
Last week I went round to Stuart's home to have a game of 40K with my Imperial Guard against his Sisters of Battle. As any great thespian knows, motivation is key to giving a good performance, in this case the two opposing forces are both occupying Hemmerdale a relatively peaceful agricultural world important to the Imperium due to it's highly nutritious export of Horned Barking Moles. A garrison of the Krablokistan *47th regiment is there as is a small Adeptus Ministorum convent. Now either due to sabotage or incompetence Farg Woolstrop received orders to advance and secure a small hamlet called Amos in expectation of an invasion. Tragically Saint Celestine** was visiting Hemmerdale and in particular the Convent Of The Vengeful Scold and also received exactly the same orders as the Imperial Guard (no I still can't refer to them as Astra Militarum).
HQ; Company Commander, Primaris Psyker,Troops; 4 Infantry Squads with 2 meltaguns, a plasmagun, 2 missile launchers and a heavy bolter.Elites; Commisar, Astropath, Platoon Commander, flamer special weapon squad and ratlings.Fast Attack; Bane WolfHeavy Support; Leman Russ with plasma cannons, battlecannon lascannon and storm bolter. Autocannon heavy weapon team and mortar heavy weapon team.Dedicated Transport; A Chimera to carry an infantry squad.
Stuart's army comprised of:
Patrol Detachment Of The Convent of The Vengeful Scold
Elite; Imagifier. 10 x Seraphim with lots of pistols.
Fast Attack; 6x Dominions (4 with meltaguns),
Heavy Support; Exorcist with Storm Bolter.
Dedicated Transport; Immolator with Immolation Flamer + Storm Bolter.
Here is what went down.
After the vanguard move of the Dominion squad the Banewolf & special weapon team's days are number!
Stuart got the first turn, he vanguarded his Dominion squad up towards my Banewolf (probably my most potent Sorritas killer) ready to meltagun it to death. In the first turn proper his Seraphim used their damned annoying Acts of Faith and swooped forward. Celestine did so as well. They moved forward in the movement phase too wiping out my squad armed with a heavy bolter. In other shooting news the Banewolf was wrecked*** by the meltagun squad who had wandered into range of it. The special weapon squad huddling behind it got toasted by the Immolator losing four men. another unit of brave Imperial infantry got shot to shit by a battle sister squad. The autocannon heavy weapons team got molested by bolter armed witches. Celestine shot then assaulted the Chimera on my left leaving it on half its wounds (or probably less).
Things of note in this picture of turn one; Sorroritas battle turn, way too many models in a position to assault my models, a lack of an infantry squad on the hill, and the usual gaggle of IG middle management skulking around at the back.
In my first turn, payback was sought and to a limited degree found. First things first, the squad in the Chimera jumped out ready to shoot laser pain at Saint Celestine then some reversing was in order to blow away the troublesome holy personage. Luckily the Leman Russ didn't have to move to shoot her either. Long story short, after much shooting and some following in with guardsmen and ****ratlings, her holiness still stood. I had also charged a guardsmen unit into some Seraphim and that was a combat I narrowly lost.
My dead pile shortly after that increased due to shitty morale rolls.
At the end of Stuart's second battle turn I conceded due to the nonsensical amount of effort I had put into killing St Celestine without any visible success. Admittedly, I didn't have the correct tools for the job (mainly anti armour weapons) also most of my left flank was dead, dead, dead!
The End of it.
So with some insight into the mistakes of the first game, we swapped sides and had another battle.
The Second Clerical Error
Farg Woolstrop managed to call a ceasefire between his depleted force and the Sister's of Battle, hastily sending a vox message to the Sorroritas commander he managed to reassemble his troops into some semblance of a force. Another vox call ordered outrider troops to reform with his main column to continue with the patrol. By this time the Sorroritas force had passed to the other end of Amos and were seemingly receiving orders from the convent as there was considerable movement within their ranks. Before either he or any of his sub commanders could tell them otherwise the Sisters of Battle formd up a second time to engage the 47th. With a curse on all religious military orders he gave the order to his force to repell hostiles from any direction. Yes, it would seem that the as yet unknown trigger of the Sisters attacking the 47th has manifested itself again. That's all the motivation you get for now.
The Battle MKII
My deployment for this game was a fair bit more circumspect. The heavy weapons teams were on the back line, which incidentally didn't have much of an effect on the range of their weapons but I reasoned they may well prolong the lives of them. Stuart once again got first turn, and a similar chain of events occured, vanguarding Dominion, Seraphim all up in my grill first turn closely followed by Saint bloody Celestine. Due to the deployment the Sisters weren't as lethal in the first turn so that was cool.
As you can see a lot of my Guardsmen aren't as committed to going forward as last time. Stuart poo pooed my hugging the back line but after the last game I thought it a more Astra Militarum type thing to do.
Rather than giving a blow by blow account a shortened version will probably suffice. The Seraphim died to a collection of small arms fire and Guardsmen bayonet. I managed to kill Saint Celestine (with considerable effort on my part) only to have her reappear next turn. Other noteworthy events were the Cannoness getting a facefull of heavy flamer and dying. My Commissar died by his own hand - that hand held a plasma pistol that rolled 1, then rolled another 1 when I used a command point. The Dominion charge my Banewolf receiving 11 hits from Chem cannon and heavy flamer only to survive that enabling Saint bloody Celestine to charge the Banewolf destroying it. The Exorcist had been nearly wrecked by my Leman Russ' opening salvoes and played very little part in the game there after. One unit of sisters sat on an objective as did a single flamer technician for the Guard. The Immolator went off road and on to another objective . Time became a factor so the game was called again with my army on the defeated end.
Some turns later my back line has thinned out somewhat but then again so had the Sisters, not a victory but a definite bloody nose for them hoes in power armour.Conclusions
The first game was a arse kicking of the worst kind but some lessons were learned. The second game was a much closer one, and had I parked the Chimera in Stuart's deployment zone, closer still. I'm sure I should get the enemy commander victory points and I definitely killed her, it's not my fault she came back! I have to paint up a lot more units to give me better choices against different opponents, flamers are virtually worthless against heavily armoured troops as is the lasgun. I can't do much about the latter but I'm planning some additions in the special weapons department that may give me added punch. Of course one of the biggest problems I'm having is always going second, I am currently working out a way to stop that as well. Tactically I think I fixated of Saint Celestine to the benefit of everything in Stuart's army. On the subject of Stuart he did a fine job of neutralizing things that were threats before they did too much damage. Hopefully my next blog post will be filled with painted up models that will really kick ass!
* The 47th Krablokistan regiment is not as illustrious as the 48th, but a good bit more illustrious than the 46th.** I find this very suspicious, why else would a so-called saint visit such a backwater, if only for a quick bit of notoriety, kissing orphans and then attacking poorly armed militia. It smacks to me of a PUBLICITY STUNT! *** The Dominion managed to destroy it with the minimum of effort, in as mauch they needed 11 wounds to do the job, 4 meltas hit 2 failed to wound and then a total of 11 wounds scored between the two successful Sisters. 1 less and I'd possibly have unleashed hell of them wagons!**** Probably not a very sound move, but I got caught up in the whole 'wouldn't it be funny if Celestine was beaten to death by a sniper rifle wielding ratling?". It didn't pan out that way.Farg Woolstrop had a lot of explaining to do. Not only had he failed to adequately fulfill his mission, he had been defeated swiftly twice in quick succession. Something was wrong on Hemmerdale, whether it was outside Xenos interference, rebellious heretical groups or an over zealous Ecclesiarchy, the Krablokistan 47th had to be wary of all other military groups, even those seemingly fighting on the same side.Thanks for reading!