Captain Wesser and his men settled in the burnt out shell of a factory, weary and bloodied. They’d been retreating from the Tyranid swarm for days now, fighting small skirmishes with the Swarm’s leading edge repeatedly, and he’d lost over half of his men, being reduced to just one platoon.
They’d only be there for around ten minutes before the first frantic calls rang out.
“They’re here! Sweet Emperor, we’re dead!”
With one glance, Wesser knew this to be true. The Swarm descending was at least three times the force of his own, a mix of hulking behemoths and swift gaunts. Commissar Cayr was already extolling the virtues of those who died in the Emperor’s name. Wesser was not particularly enamoured by the concept, and turned to his vox-man, ordering him to radio for help.
He held no hope, of course. But his duty was to keep his boys alive and if any help was available, he’d take it. Las-fire cracked out, along with the heavier thud of autocannons. Some of the Tyranids began to die, but it was a small drop. Their own guns were beginning to find range, and splatters of some unthinkable bio-matter began to fire back.
“Sir, sir,” cried his vox-man, “We’ve got a response!” He held out the vox-horn for his commander to hear.
“To the Imperial forces, we acknowledge and respond. The full fury of the Emperor’s Angels is with you.”
Wesser looked at the vox-horn with disbelief.
The Astartes were here.
Hi there! Today’s battle report is a little different. We decided to put a bit of a narrative spin on the match, and ended up going for the idea from the Ateph Campaign where 3000pts of Vampiric16’s Tyranids will be bearing down on 1000pts of my Imperial Guard, sitting on an objective. However, there are 2000pts of Space Marines ready to come in and save the day, though I won’t know which board edge they’ll come on from until they start arriving.
The Keldorian Last Stand
Captain Wesser – Power Fist, Standard, Medic, Vox, Heavy Flamer
-Lieutenant Raser – Power Sword, 4 Flamers
-Infantry Squad 1 – Plasma Gun, Autocannon, Vox, Commissar
-Infantry Squad 2 – Plasma Gun, Autocannon, Vox
-Infantry Squad 3 – Plasma Gun, Autocannon, Vox
-Infantry Squad 4 – Plasma Gun, Autocannon, Vox
-Infantry Squad 5 – Plasma Gun, Autocannon, Vox
Veteran Squad – 3 Meltaguns, (Shoud have had Chimera, but forgot it)
Dragon Guard Relief Force
Captain Deinon – Pair of Lightning Claws
Command Squad Jakyrus – Thunder Hammer, Company Champion, Standard, Meltagun, Razorback
Tactical Squad Sarutobi – Meltagun, Multi-Melta, Power Sword, Rhino
Tactical Squad Janten – Power Fist and Combi-Flamer, Flamer, Multi-Melta, Rhino
Tactical Squad Rhoeceus – Combi-Plasma , Plasma Gun, Plasma Cannon, Rhino
Assault Squad Axamander – Pair of Lightning Claws, 2 Flamers
Assault Squad Arus – Thunder Hammer, 2 Flamers
Terminator Squad Ryuu – Heavy Flamer
Terminator Squad Kabuto – Assault Cannon
Behemoth Vanguard Swarm
Hive Tyrant – Lash Whip, Bonesword, H.Venom Cannon, Paroxysm, Leech Essence, 2 Tyrant Guard
Hive Tyrant – Wings, Twin-Linked Devourers, Scything Talons, Paroxysm, Leech Essence
3 Hive Guard
12 Termagants – Devourers
5 Tyranid Warriors – Scything Talons, Deathspitters, Barbed Strangler
Tervigon – Adrenal Glands, Toxin Sacsm Catalyst
20 Hormagaunts – Toxin Sacs
20 Hormagaunts – Toxin Sacs
11 Genestealers – Broodlord
5 Ravenors – Rending Claws
Tyrannofex – Rupture Cannon, Cluster Spines, Dessicator Larvae
Mawloc – Adrenal Glands
Trygon – Adrenal Glands
Infantry Squads 1 and 2 blob together in the left hand factory building, one the objective. The Veterans and Company Command Squad deploy behind them, the Lascannon Team above them. Squads 4 and 5 join together in the other building with a Lascannon Team above them too, and Raser’s flamer team behind. The last Infantry Squad deploys by itself, with no cover on the right flank.
Trying to describe the Tyranid deployment…jeez. The right flank is held by the Flyrant and Gargoyles backed by the Pyrovores and Mawloc. Sweeping across you have the Termagants and Hormagaunts backed up by the Warrior-class beasts and the Tervigon, moving over to the Hive Tyrant, Tyrannofex, Zoanthropes and Trygon on the left.
Imperial Turn 1
With no movement and the enemy over 24” away, the shooting this turn is minor. The Flyrant is wounded by a Lascannon Team, and then again by an Autocannon.
The Zoanthropes are hit by the other Lascannon Team, but make their invulnerable saves with ease.
Tyranid Turn 1
With a trampling of hooves, the Tyranid swarm surges forward, most running due to the poor range. The Mawloc dives under the ground, ready to surface again next turn. The Tervigon withholds from spawning this turn.
The Tyrannofex fails to harm anything, but the Tyrant nails three Guardsmen with the Heavy Venom Cannon.
Imperial Turn 2
From the right flank, the Space Marine reinforcements begin to arrive. Tactical Squad Janten jumps out of its Rhino in front of the Gargoyles and annihilates the entire brood within moments of their arrival.
In the very rear, Assault Squad Helios dashes forward, threatening the Tervigon. Terminator Squad Kabuto appears behind the Tyrannofex, but leaves no mark on its armoured derrière. Tactical Squad Rhoeceus however comes on in the very front, heading for the objective.
Behind the line, the Razorback kills a Pyrovore, and Assault Squad Arus kills seven Hormagaunts with their flamers. They then multi-assault into both of the units, but only kill two Hormagaunts due to some amazing saves. The Hammer pulps the Pyrovore, and it explodes, killing two more. The Hormagaunts drag an Assault Marine Down in return, and hold on.
The Lascannons bring down the Flyrant, and Squad 1-2 kills a Zoanthrope with their autocannons. The rest of the Imperial shooting somehow fails to down even a single Gargoyle.
[B]Tyranid Turn 2[B]
The turn begins with the Genestealers and Mawloc appearing deep in my zone. The Mawloc erupts in the middle, eviscerating five Guardsmen from Squad 3-4. The Genestealers outflank and charge into Squad 1-2, easily running down the puny humans, due to scoring enough wounds to take out the Commissar, though two Genestealers are also brought down.
The Tyranid wave continues its advance, rotating to engage the Marines in its flank. Eight Termagants are birthed by the Tervigon, and shoot/assault Assault Squad Arus, and due to the Tervigon’s buffs bring down two of them, while managing to hold one, reduced to just one model.
The Hive Guard explode the Razorback, revealing the Captain and Command Squad.The Warriors pour fire in, and Sergeant Jakyrus dies. The Devilgaunts kill two members of Tactical Squad Janten, and a third dies to the Tyrant. Besides them, their Rhino is immobilized by a terrific shot from the Tyrannofex.
The Zoanthropes kill four Guardsmen with blasts of psyfire. The Gargoyles kill three members from Infantry Squad 5. The Tervigon casts catalyst on the Hormagaunts, who manage to hold on in the face of the pasting Assault Squad Arus is dishing out, killing one in return.
In the rear, the Terminators are charged by the Trygon and Ravenors. The Trygon is largely irrelevant, causing five wounds, but four are stopped. Then the Terminators and Ravenors go, and mutually wipe each other out in a horrific scene of carnage.
Imperial Turn 3
Tactical Squad Sarutobi drives on and jumps out, destroying the second Gargoyle brood. Rhoeceus continues down the back line to jump out on the Mawloc. “Don’t worry, weak humans!” they cry, before completely failing to hurt the beast, and killing their own plasma gunner. With a long suffering sigh, the Guardsmen pour Lascannon and Plasma fire into it, felling it.
Captain Wesser moves up to kill three Genestealers with his heavy flamer. Captain Deinon leads his men into the Devilgaunts, slaughtering all of them. Helios sees off the last Termagant, consolidating away from the Trygon, but Arus still cannot finish the Hormagaunts, losing two marines in the combat. The last Hormagaunt laughs in their faces.
Tyranid Turn 3
Eight more Termagants spawn, and prepare to continue wearing down Helios’ Squad, but choose not to as the Trygon powers through the terrain to smash into them instead, tearing all seven marines apart in a frenzy.
The Hive Guard fire into Squad Janten, felling one. The Zoanthropes hit Wesser’s Squad multiple times, but the medic sees them through unharmed. The Tyrannofex destroys the Storm Bolter on Rhino 3.
The Warriors kill the Company Standard with shooting, as the Hive Tyrant ensnares the Command Squad with Paroxysm. The Warriors then charge into the weakened squad. However, Captain Deinon is overflowing with the Emperor’s light, and despite WS1, fells an entire Warriors with three strikes of his claws. The Warriors only wound him in return, losing the combat.
The Genestealers kill the Veterans with ease, but the Broodlord is wounded. The Tervigon joins the Hormagaunt, who dies as she stomps a marine flat. Moving flat out, the other Hormagaunt brood reaches Squad 3-4 and wipes them out, consolidating back away from the flamer squads.
Imperial Turn 4
Terminator Squad Ryuu appears near those Hormagaunts, and kills thirteen with their bolters and heavy flamer. Sarutobi’s Squad and their Rhino each kill one more, leaving just one Hormagaunt.
Captain Wesser’s heavy flamer kills most of the Genestealers, and Tactical Squad Rhoeceus then finishes the Broodlord in a hail of bolt rounds. Rhoeceus’ Rhino moves up to block Tyranid los.
Squad Janten and the Lascannons fire into the Tyrant, killing a Tyrant Guard.
The Tervigon loses a wound as it kills another marine. Another Tyranid Warrior dies, but brother Matthias, the meltagunner dies in return.
Tyranid Turn 4
Annoyed by their failure last turn, the Zoanthropes kill three of Wesser’s squad, and he flees of the board, leaving his men to die. The Hive Guard kill one of Sarutobi’s marines.
The Tyrant advances on the Terminators, failing to cast paroxysm and not killing any with its venom cannon. But in the following assault, he wipes out all five, the last two rolling a snake eyes to the Tyrant Guard.
The last Hormagaunt tries to be useful by assaulting a Lascannon Team, but dies for no gain. The Warriors and Command Squad continue to go at it, chipping wounds from the Tyranid leader-beasts.
The Trygon, seeing the lovely lady that is the Tervigon in peril, charges in to Squad Arus, smashing them to pieces with ease. His gentlemanly concern is not rewarded. Nonetheless, the Trygon is not deterred, for he knows that a true gentleman is not a gentleman for reward.
Imperial Turn 5
Firing desperately, the Lascannon Teams put two wounds on the Tyrant and one on the Guard. The Rhinos move to block movement, while the flamer team moves up in preparation.
The Tactical Squads combine fire to wipe out one of the spawned Gaunt broods moving for the objective.
In a sudden burst of competence the Warriors kill the Command Squad, and Captain Deinon flees, a pitiful four inches. Not so heroic now, eh?
Tyranid Turn 5
Continuing his goal to protect the Tervigon, the Trygon slams into Squad Janten, killing them all. The Tervigon herself attacks the fleeing Captain, but neither score any wounds.
The Warriors somehow manages to hit themselves with the barbed strangler, after trying to hit the nearby Squad Sarutobi. They assault in, seeking to cover their embarrassment, killing one marine.
Rhino 1 lives through the attentions of the Hive Guard, Zoanthropes and Tyrannofex.
The Tyrant charges through a wall into a Lascannon Team, slaughtering them, but they kill the wounded Guard as they go down. He consolidates behind a wall.
Imperial Turn 6
Sarutobi hurts a Warrior, winning the combat, though not finishing it. Rhoeceus moves up on the Tyrant, and takes its third wound with bolter fire. The flamer squad also target it, but do not hurt it.
The Lascannon Team cannot kill any of the Zoanthropes, but the Autocannon from the largely forgotten squad 5 wounds the Trygon. The Tervigon wounds Captain Deinon and he flees AGAIN.
Tyranid Turn 6
The Hive Guard explode Rhino 3, though the radius is too small to hit the nearby squads. The Zoanthropes and Tyrannofex are unable to repeat the success with Rhino 1. Termagants kill one of the flamer squad.
The Trygon slams into Squad Sarutobi next, slaying six. Sergeant Sarutobi, the sole survivor, flees for his life, but not before killing one more warrior. Termagants surround and kill Captain Deinon.
The Tyrant cuts into Squad Rhoeceus, killing five, and managing to not lose his last wound. If the Squad holds, I’ve still got the objective, and they pass –just- on a four. If they’d run away, the Tyrant woud have contested the objective.
The roll comes up, and there is no turn seven.
The Platoon Command Squad holds the objective.
The Imperials Win! *Shut up, Pyrrhus*
Well, that was pretty close, wasn’t it? No doubt that in terms of forces, I was getting my ass kicked, but I gritted my teeth and held on to my objective for grim death. In truth, my saviour was the second Terminator Squad landing on point. If they’d scattered and been unable to flame the Hormagaunts, I doubt that I could have stopped them.
Vampiric16 also pointed out that he shouldn’t have turned around to take out the Terminators. If he’d simply kept advancing, they’d have been hard pressed to keep up. The T-fex may have taken a beating, but it’s not like he was particularly useful anyway.
Overall, I really enjoyed playing that game, as it always seemed that there was something going on!
Man of the Match – The Dapper Trygon
I must admit that the running joke developing in my head is that Vampiric16’s Trygon is a gentleman all dressed up in a tophat and monocle, making fisticuffs and challenging people to Marquis of Queensbury rules. Nonetheless, that thing took out two Assault Squads, two Tactical Squads and helped in killing some Terminators. Consistently scoring 5-7 power weapon hits against marines is gonna hurt, fast.
There were some runners up, such as the Tyrant who almost won the day, and the Hormagaunts who just refused to die. Deinon’s awesome streak was ruined by running TWICE. Both my HQs ended up fleeing by the game’s end! They’re supposed to be heroic.
Sarutobi fell back with all haste, snapping bolt shots at the pursuing Termagants. One leapt out at him from his right, and he disembowelled it with his power sword. This continued on for several minutes before he finally managed to escape his followers, as they reached the reaches of their synapse range.
He opened his vox channel. “Is anyone there, can anyone give me a sitrep?” It was Sergeant Rhoeceus who responded.
“We held. The Swarm is falling back, possibly to gather their strength. I doubt we can hold another wave.”
“Did we rescue any survivors?” Sarutobi asked.
“Only a handful. This was a huge waste, Sarutobi.”
“The Emperor expects every man to do his duty, Rhoeceus. We fought in his name as did these Guardsmen. I am honoured to have fought by their side, and Emperor willing we will do so again. We will withdraw for now. This was is not over yet.”