Friday, March 20, 2015

Luck be a Lady Tonight...

Captain Sendini and Librarian Epistolary Angelus of the Blood Angels 5th Company "Daemonbanes" were disappointed and their ire was beginning to show.  Things were not going well, and it was difficult to pinpoint the source.  5th Company had found through some trick of fate, that every encounter and every battle was not going in any form of positive way.  Captain Sendini could see the feeling creeping into every element of the Company.  They were...unlucky...

OK, I think I've lost the last 4 games in a row.  Critical review of the games would show that there are a combination of factors at play here - it is ski season (still) and I'm not getting any time into the table top; I'm still experimenting with the Blood Angels and trying things out to see how far I can push the game play; I make mistakes often based on bad information or information held back; everyone else's armies are also changing seemingly weekly; and my dice have gone bad, or so it seems.

In reality, the Blood Angels are a tough army to play.  They don't have things like Centurion Stars, or Biker Swarms, or FMCs.  They are pretty straightforward - defeat the enemy face to face with bolter, chainsword, and melta.  And they can only do this if you make no mistakes.  Seriously.  No mistakes. But, I'd still say that I'm carrying around an aura of bad luck.  And my opponents can feel it too, and see it right before their eyes.

Last night, the owner of the FLGS actually came by as he does every week around the shop. This time he paused..." that a new army?  Where is one...?"  It was almost as if he had not seen the Blood Angels I've been playing since the beginning of the year...or the purchases of red paint, cards, and codex.  For a minute or two, the reality of it flooded my mind. Are people that tagged to the Army they play?  Do you remember when the internet was showing pictures comparing dogs to their owners?  Is it that way with game armies too? Am I supposed to  Is there something functionally wrong with my attempt to be red that is causing a fundamental change in the universe?  Is this the butterfly effect?

Well, the heck with that all.  I should just stay oblivious to the impact of me switching to Blood Angels and just keep moving forward.  I can be blue some other day.

1850 Points - Maelstrom Mission #1
Opfor: TAU

OK, this was another one of those games where I show up with three lists, and my opponent wants a different point value.  I'll tell you now, I added 100 points to an existing 1750 list, then on the fly tweaked it to create a functional change.  What I did actually, in retrospect, was break the FOC, not that it really mattered.

Librarian Epistolary Angelus would be the warlord.  He rolled up on the BA traits and got the 12-inch fearless bubble.  For spells, rolling from the BA Sanguinary Discipline, he had Force, the Primary, Fear the Darkness, and XXX.  Overall, not bad, but not the greatest.

Keeping with my last few battle reports, I'll let the pictures tell the story while i make comments on what was going on.  There are gaps in the story line, as I was at times too busy clenching my jaw over the dice rolls I was experiencing.

Here is my force for the game.  See the error?  It was a last second add-in just to get in another 100 points.

Here is the Opfor.  The skimmer includes the character to make it BS5, and everything is upgraded to make them as tough as possible and AP-3 or better to the max.

Just after deployment.  I got to choose the corner.  My opponent won the roll to deploy and go first.  I rolled a 1 on the seize attempt. There is a unit of stealth suits hidden from view who will soon pop onto the top of the building on my lower right.

Getting ready to rock and roll.

After Tau turn 1.  I lost a rhino, and a razorback was shaken.  Score is 0-1.  

Here it is in the middle of turn 2.  The Tau tank had been on the other side of my assault melta unit.  They had actually arrived turn 1, and the Tau vehicle either jinked away the meltagun shots or I rolled 1s.  The other unit in the middle was from the Rhino.  I think it was a mistake here (they had to disembark when the Rhino was wrecked. On my turn they had moved 6 inches and then made a long 10-inch charge, able to just reach the suits that had stayed forward in order to shoot up my lines.  I thought I was luck for a moment, until my opponent announced that the suit leader (later disclosed as his warlord) had an AP3 weapon and was WS4, T4...and he challenged my axe-wielding sergeant and popped him.    In the photo, my opponent is measuring how his Xenos mercenaries would jump forward with their AP3 rifles to take down my suicide melta squad...

And then his reserve units arrived.  A character and suits.  I thought the named character was the warlord...side story - around turn 3 or 4, my DC dread actually charged the named character (when he had a choice between that and the "real" warlord) and killed this guy - It was a combined assault with the surviving DC (who never got to swing) - because I wanted the warlord points...I'd eventually correct the problem on turn 5 when the last surviving DC (power fist) killed the actual warlord after it had collected 2 points off objective 3.

Meanwhile, this was going on at the far right...another side story - on my following turn from this picture, the demi-Tac squad got out of the Razorback (which was shaken) and they prepared to fire on the walker.  In that psychic phase, I cast fear of the darkness on the walker and it broke and ran 3D6 back to within a half inch of the table edge.  That put it out of charge range of the RAS/librarian by an inch.  That walker was a PIMA until it miraculously died in the bottom of turn 7 by the last shot from my razorback.  Until then, for every shot, he'd make nearly every re-roll of his shield save.

Here we are at the middle of turn 2.  I lost a razorback, some assault troops, and was hoping at this point I could turn this mess around.   I'd lined up my two Baal preds to shoot at the suits, supported by the other dismounted demi-tac squad, plus the other drop pod melta squad which had deviated off Objective s, back 11 inches towards my own lines.  Out of all of that firepower (2 TLAC, 4 HBs, 1 flamer, 6 bolters, 2 melta guns, and two pistols) he'd lost just two suits, making nearly all of his saves.  After all of the carnage, the game was still tied or within +/-1 or 2 points.  

Just a close up...sort of.  After taking losses in turns 1 and 2, the RAS, SP, and Libby would jump on top of the building to wipe out the stealth suit team.

Here we are around the middle of turn 4. I'd stopped taking pictures.  I was depressed.  The Tau walker kept powering up his Nova reactor for a 3++ rerollable save with some sort of upgrade, and I could not kill it.  Between that and the flyer, he was making hash out of my marines.  My flyer had gone to hover mode in order to allow the DC to drop out and charge the "false warlord" and had moved to keep shooting at the walker.    

There it is, hanging out back at his lines hoping to survive.  Effin' walker.

End of turn 7.  I think on turn 7 I'd drawn the card that said I'd need to control every objective.

Yep. A Pyrrhic Victory.  Effin' walker.

Score at the end.  I'd lost by one single point.  At this time I had just the razorback and two drop pods.  My opponent only had his skimmer tank and flyer.  It all really ended badly for me in Turn 6 when (1) my DC sergeant was charging (with rage and +1 attacks) at the skimmer tank (a 2-inch charge range in the open), and the flechette launcher got one hit and I rolled a 1, 2 for saves; and then the librarian was hit twice by the flyer and I rolled 1, 1 for saves.  All within 30 seconds.  The librarian had not been wounded to that point, but the Sanguinary was gone from the Walker shooting at them (I blew all of the FNP saves). Effin Walker.  

So yeah, its been like 4 losses so far in a row.  Just a bad month of gaming I suppose.

OK - end of the riddle - in the beginning I said there was an error.  The error was creating a separate RAS squad with rhino - for 100 points (they had a power axe).  That would have made them the 4th Fast Attack unit...originally I'd just added the 5 guys to Pod #1, but then, not thinking,  created the fourth yeah, stuff happens when you are not prepared for a last minute change.

All for now, Happy War Gaming - may may Luck be a Lady for Your Night!


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