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    Chapter Master Kurisu313's Avatar
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    Re: The Ateph Campaign

    Game 2: A Deal With The Devil


    It stood in the centre of the large, circular room, surrounded by a plethora of scanning and recording instruments all trying to probe the mysteries of the object. Members of the Mechanicus and the Ordo Xenos huddled around readouts, working in tandem to try to decipher anything they could.

    Sforza stood watching them with idle interest. Not that the Ateph Crystal didn’t make him curious, but only results mattered now. He needed to understand the game being played here, and fast. It was not in his nature to speculate without information, but at a superficial level, he expected Necron artifice. A green, translucent hexagonal crystal seemed to fit their technology.

    However, the first thing he had done was to take extensive seismological readings of the planet. And this world was definitely not a tombworld. There was no catacomb of silent killing machines underneath their feet. And the Crystal had appeared to be buried haphazardly, which made no sense. But then, what?

    A gaggle of adepts and acolytes suddenly approached him in a flurry of excited voices. He silenced them with a raised hand and pointed to one of them.

    “You, explain quickly.”

    “My lord, by studying the unusual radiation given off by the artefact, we have been able to devise a way to start searching for any other potential artefacts and…” Sforza grabbed the data-slate in his hand immediately. It showed a topological map, with a faintly glowing rune marking the source of the radiation.

    “A match,” he breathed, turning on his communicator. “Colonel Murrish, mobilize your Cadians at once. I have a mission for you.”


    Amadeus swore and threw his chair across the room in a blinding rage. A diligent servitor moved to clean it up, and Amadeus shot it in the head with his bolt pistol for good measure.

    His informant within Sforza’s operation had told him of their discovery, but they would already be at the site, unearthing the crystal! There was no way that he could intercept them. The Keldorians had taken a pounding and goodwill was currently in short supply. He cared not, but had to be careful not to expend them as a useful ally too early. But there was no way to catch up, even if they hadn’t expended a lot of their mechanised assets.

    He needed to make a deal with the devil.

    It took five minutes to make the call.

    “Ah, Elias, my old friend!” came the voice through his special communicator, thick with faked good humour. “It’s so good to hear from you again!”

    “Shove it Kuras, I have no time. I’ll play nice later. I have a job that needs doing, and it needs doing right now.” He outlined the problem at hand. There was a pause, expectant.

    “One thousand,” the voice said, now business-like.

    “Agreed.”

    “Then consider it done!” The cheer was back in Kuras’ voice. “I’ll bring you your prize and then we can have a nice chat about old times, can’t we?” The line went dead. Amadeus almost broke the communicator in his hand but managed to relax. It might be infuriating, but Kuras would certainly get the job done. He breathed out steadily.

    He stopped to look at the ruined servitor. The violent flashes seemed to be coming more frequently now. Perhaps because his goal was so near. But he was an Inquisitor and his will would not falter to such petty human failings. He felt himself calming, the training that made his kind so strong clamping down.

    Once he got this Crystal, things would start happening.


    Commissar Zayker finally felt himself begin to relax. During retrieval, he’d been constantly on edge, waiting for attack, but they’d exhumed the Crystal successfully, and now the Inquisitor’s base was in sight as his mechanised column wound its way home. It was just a little further.

    It would seem to Zayker as if every warning chime and vox-channel activated at the same time.


    From the front of the column, pitch-black vessels swept in like daggers made of the purest night.

    High overhead in his Venom, Archon Kuras grinned, thinking of the fun he would have.

    The Kabal of the Shattered Mirror had arrived.


    Overview

    Hello there, and welcome to the second game in the Ateph Campaign! In this 2000pts mission, the Cadian 113th are transporting a Crystal home, lengthways down the board. The Crystal is in a vehicle, which I am not privy to. The Dark Eldar launch their ambush by coming in from the other short board edge.

    If he gets the Crystal off the other short board edge or I never discover it, he wins. If I can crack the correct vehicle, the Crystal becomes a static objective, and the winner is the one that holds it.

    The Kabal of the Shattered Mirror
    Archon Kuras – Djin Blade, Blast Pistol, Ghostplate, Clone Field, Combat Drugs, Haywire Grenades
    4 Incubi – Klaivex w/ Demiklaives, Venom w/ Splinter Cannon, Retrofire Jets
    5 Trueborn – Dracon w/ Venom Blade, 4 Blasters, both Grenades, Venom w/Splinter Cannon, Retrofire Jets
    10 Blue Wyches – Hekatryx w/ Agoniser, 2 Shardnets, Haywire Grenades, Raider w/ Flickerfields
    10 Red Wyches – Hekatryx w/ Agoniser, 2 Hydra Gauntlets, Haywire Grenades, Raider w/ Flickerfields
    5 Blue Warriors – Sybarite w/ Venom Blade, Blaster, Venom w/ Splinter Cannon, Retrofire Jets
    5 Red Warriors – Sybarite w/ Venom Blade, Blaster, Venom w/ Splinter Cannon, Retrofire Jets
    5 Purple Warriors – Sybarite w/ Venom Blade, Blaster, Venom w/ Splinter Cannon, Retrofire Jets
    3 Reaver Jetbikes – Arena Champion w/ Venom Blade, Heat Lance
    Ravager – Flickerfields
    Ravager – Flickerfields
    Razorwing – Flickerfields, Splinter Cannon, Disintegrators, 4 Shatterfield Missiles


    The Cadian 113th
    Lord Commissar Zayker – Powerfist
    Veteran Squad 450 – Meltagun, Famer, Chimera
    Veteran Squad 501 – Bolt Pistol, Meltagun, Chimera
    Veteran Squad 005 – Plasma Pistol, Meltagun, Plasma Gun, Chimera
    2 Sentinels
    Leman Russ Squadron 1
    ---Vanquisher – Lascannon, Heavy Stubber, Dozer Blade
    ---Vanquisher – Lascannon, Heavy Stubber, Multi-melta sponsons
    Leman Russ Squadron 2
    ---Demolisher – Storm Bolter, Dozer Blade
    ---Eradicator – Heavy Stubber, Dozer Blade
    Leman Russ Squadron 3
    ---Battle Tank – Lascannon, Dozer Blade, Heavy Bolters, Heavy Stubber
    ---Battle Tank – Dozer Blade, Heavy Bolters, Heavy Stubber
    ---Battle Tank – Dozer Blade, Heavy Bolters, Storm Bolter

    Deployment

    The Cadians deploy their three Chimeras on the road itself in a line. The Demolisher-Eradicator Squadron is on their right, and the Leman Russ and Vanquishers are on the left. The Sentinels are outriders and will outflank from one of the long board edges.

    The Dark Eldar do not deploy for this mission, but come on from the opposite board edge on turn 1. The Venoms and Razorwing are circling high above to deep strike and complete the trap. The Combat Drugs is the ability to re-roll wounds thanks to Painbringer.

    Dark Eldar Turn 1

    The swift vehicles of the Dark Eldar come on at high speed, with both Raiders moving flat out towards the enemy, and the Reavers boosting madly down the left flank. The Ravagers hang back slightly, to draw out the Imperial shooting.

    Cadian Turn 1

    The Guard convoy grinds forward slowly, eager to press forward, but not to sacrifice their firepower.

    The Chimera’s fire speculative shots at the nearest Raider, but they are easily avoided by the half-invisible craft.

    The Leman Russ Squadrons all target the central Ravager, but the Vanquishers and Demolisher miss wildly. The Battle Tanks weigh in; shattering the fragile craft in a volley of high ordnance, but the Ravager’s wreckage now blocks the road.

    Dark Eldar Turn 2

    From out of the sun, the Dark Eldar aircraft descend to ensnare the Cadians. The Red Warriors and Trueborn appear on the right side, and the Blue Warriors land on the left. Two of the Venoms land in dense foliage, but avoid snaring themselves.

    The Razorwing, mishaps and was clearly disoriented by the drugs he’s been taking as my opponent places him centrally, facing the wrong way!

    The Eldar craft all advance swiftly, the Reavers in particular crossing the full six foot board in just two turns, using the Leman Russ’ own bulk to find hiding places.

    The dark lance fire is meagre, but the remaining Ravager scores a nice bonus, immobilizing the front Chimera and barring the way for those behind.

    Cadian Turn 2

    The tanks begin to slowly spill around the damaged Chimera. Perhaps in a sense of evil justice, the Chimera immobilizes the Razorwing, leaving it in one of the most useless positions imaginable.

    From the backs of their Chimeras, Squads 450 and 005 destroy the Trueborn’s Venom in a ball of fire, killing one of them. The Chimera’s themselves strip a splinter cannon from the Red Warrior’s Venom, and Immobilize the Red Wyches Raider.

    The Vanquishers fail to strike the Blue Venom as it jinks away, flickerfields flaring. The Demolisher stuns the Blue Wyches Raider, but then the Leman Russ annihilate it, killing six of the Wyches inside. The rest fail their morale in the face of such overwhelming firepower and will spend the rest of the game running back down the board.

    Dark Eldar Turn 3

    The last two Venoms appear, the Archon’s touching down in front of the armoured column, and the Purple Warrior’s making a daring deepstrike successfully behind the enemy force.

    From the back of their Venom, the Blue Warriors explode one of the Vanquisher’s with a pinpoint shot from their blaster. On the other side of the line, the Demolisher too, comes apart in a ball of flame, killing the Dracon.

    The Ravager explodes the lead Chimera, and Squad 450 bail out, losing six men to the conflagration, before three of the survivors are struck down by the Archon’s Venom, leaving the sole survivor alone and pinned.

    The Red Raider and Red Venom do nothing useful this turn, but the Trueborn on the other end of the competence spectrum decide that one tank a turn isn’t enough and assault the Eradicator, immobilizing the tank and further blocking progress for the Chimera’s.

    Cadian Turn 3

    Veteran Squads 005 and 501 disembark to deal with things personally. 501’s flamer licks along the Eradicator’s hull but only two Trueborn die. The other Veterans shoot into the nearby Purple Venom, but both the Plasma Gunner and Sergeant kill themselves thanks to overheating. Traversing hard, it is the Vanquisher that destroys the Venom, but due to the stubber, not the main cannon. The Eradicator aims at the disembarking Warriors, but only nabs two of them.

    Chimera 005 explodes the Incubi’s Venom killing one. The Leman Russ Battle Tanks take aim at the survivors. Seeing the considerable firepower of three Leman Russ, Archon Kuras activates his webway portal and the Archon and Incubi disappear back to Commorragh moments before the shots land. (Game-wise they were obliterated with something like seven wounds apiece.)

    Veteran Squad 501 engages a multi-charge against the survivors of the Trueborn and Purple Warriors, but three Veterans die to only two of the Warriors. The Trueborn wrecks the nova cannon on the Eradicator in the meantime.

    Dark Eldar Turn 4

    The advancing Ravager kills its second Chimera, and a gleaming crystal is revealed along with the Commissar Lord, who is very unlucky and gets pinned on a double six. The Blue Venom and Reavers leap the line of tanks into the rear of the formation.

    The last member of Squad 450 is killed by the Red Venom, but the Warriors miss with their blaster. Squad 005 manages to see off the Trueborn and Purple Warriors, but not before the Eradicator is shaken. The Reavers charge into Squad 501 and kill four for one loss, but the presence of the Commissar nearby means that they do not flee.

    Cadian Turn 4

    The Sentinels finally arrive and immediately make their presence felt, exploding the Ravager from behind. Squad 501 and their Chimera target the Blue Venom, but miss in a hilarious fashion; they try to surround it in assault, but cannot land a good blow on the swift vehicle.

    The Leman Russ say “you die” to their next target, exploding the Red Venom, killing one Warrior.

    The Reavers kill one Veteran.

    Dark Eldar Turn 5

    The Blue Venom moves away from the Veterans, kills three with its cannons, and unloads the Warriors. They assault in to help the Reavers out and engage the Commissar Lord. Three die to his fist, but not before he is wounded and two Veterans are dragged down.

    The Red Warriors move forward through craters, but miss with their blaster. The Red Wyches had been idling in their Raider for a few turns, wary to cross the open ground with the Leman Russ watching. But since the Imperial line had stalled, they had to join in. Due to a lot of sixes, they manage to cross a full 18” and assault the Eradicator, knocking out the Lascannon.

    Cadian Turn 5

    Tracking the fast moving bodies, the Leman Russ Squadron blows apart six of the Wyches and the Hekatryx as they move behind cover. This marks the first time in the game where they haven’t simply obliterated their target. Two Red Warriors die to the last Chimera, including the blaster, but hey, it missed a lot.

    The Vanquisher chooses to kill the prone Razorwing, but only knocks out a disintegrator. The advancing Sentinels do nothing.

    Squad 005 misses the Blue Venom (again) and charges into it and the Reavers. In the complicated assault, things go well for the Dark Eldar. At I6, the Reavers kill the last member of 501 and wound the Commissar, gaining a pain token, before the Warriors strike his last wound, gaining their own. This mitigates the charging Veteran’s attacks, but they hold on anyway.

    Dark Eldar Turn 6

    The Red Warriors run over the burning wreckage of a Chimera, losing the Sybarite, but now hold the objective.

    The Red Wyches leave the smoking hulk of the Eradicator to assault the Leman Russ. With three automatic haywire grenade hits, turning into three incredibly lucky glances, two Leman Russ die and the last is shaken. That was amazing.

    The Veterans are whittled down by the Warriors and Reavers.

    Cadian Turn 6

    The Vanquisher spins on the spot to destroy the Blue Venom behind it, but even at point blank range it misses with every shot it has! The Sentinels bounce off of the Razorwing’s mighty hull…yeah.

    The Reavers miss, but the Warriors finish the Veterans, gaining their second pain token.

    Dark Eldar Turn 7

    The Reavers chase down the last Russ, but cannot hurt it, even with plasma grenades. The Red Warrior hides behind the Eradicator as the Blue Warriors chip away at the Chimera, immobilizing and stunning it.

    Cadian Turn 7

    The Sentinels pound away at the Razorwing to little effect.

    There is some devilry going on as the Vanquisher and Leman Russ target the Reavers and Warriors, but only one bike falls, do to some very jammy saves.

    Turns 8-10

    The following turns devolve into something of a hilarious farce as the Dark Eldar try to shift the Chimera and Eradicator from the objective and failing. For their part, with a Russ and Vanquisher, the Cadians cannot kill 1 Reaver, 3 Warriors or a Venom. Any of them. No one dies for three turns. That includes the Razorwing who is repeatedly shot and assaulted by the Sentinels, losing gun after gun, but not dying.


    Results

    The Objective is held by the Red and Blue Warriors but contested by the Eradicator and Chimera.

    A Draw!

    It is decided that since I am the only one with scoring units on the objective, that for the narrative of the campaign, the Dark Eldar whisk the Crystal away in the nearby Venom. (Cont’d)
    Last edited by Kurisu313; 25-03-2012 at 22:22.

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