Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Battle Report: Raven Scars vs Khorne

     This week I missed our Thursday night league (stupid made-up holidays) but I have vowed to get in at least 1 game per week this year.  So Saturday I headed up to Fantasy Books and Games and, luckily, found someone to play.  I played against Alec and his Khorne-based Chaos Space Marine army.  I was excited to try out the Ravenwing army list that I had come up with.  I wanted to see if this Standard of Devastation was as powerful (or over-powered) as some people were saying.  Here is my list:

Sammael: Corvex (jetbike)
Librarian: SM Bike, Level 2 Psycher, Power Field Generator
RW Command Squad: Apothecary, Champion, Standard of Devastation,

Troops:  RWAS=Ravenwing Attack Squadron x6
RWAS: Melta Gun x2, Attack Bike w/ MM
RWAS: Melta Gun x2, Attack Bike w/ MM
RWAS: Plasma Gun x2, Landspeeder Typhoon w/ HB
RWAS: Plasma Gun x2, Landspeeder Typhoon w/ HB
RWAS: Combi-Plasma, Plasma Gun x2

Black Knights: Power Weapon

    His list was essentially one of a few armies that are the bane of my list.  Those Helldrakes just wreck my bikes, ignoring their armour saves AND thier jink saves.  This is essentially what he was running:

Kharn the Betrayer:
Chaos Lord: Burning Brand of Skalathrax

Khorne Berzerkers x8: Plasma Pistol
Khorne Berzerkers x8: Rhino (upgrades?)
Khorne Berzerkers x8: Rhino (upgrades?)

Chaos Terminators x8: (upgrades?)

Helldrake: Baleflamer


     I realize that this list only comes out to about 1800 points.  I didn't get his list yet, but I'm sure that there are some upgrades on those big units.  I didn't really get a chance to find out, as you will see.....

     For the mission type, we rolled Purge the Alien with Dawn of War deployment.  This is probably the worst mission for my army, as all my attack bikes and Landspeeders are separate units that are easy kill points.  He won the roll-off and chose to go first.  His deployment consisted of one Rhino with the Lord on my left, one Rhino with the Helbrute on my right, and in the center he had the Landraider full of Berzerkers and Kharn with the Defiler.  In reserves were the Terminators and Heldrake.

     My deployment was:  Command squad with Sammael and Librarian in the center.  A plasma and melta squad to their right with the Attack Bikes, 2 plasma and one melta squads to their left and the Black Knights on the far left flank.  Both of the Landspeeders were on the far right flank.

Start/Turn 1:
    I used my scout move to push everyone 12" forward, taking in cover where I could and making sure that the Attack Bikes were as safe as possible (one of them was out of sight behind some ruins.)  In hindsight, I should have stayed back from the Landraider.  On turn one, he moved everything forward, disembarking the Landraider right at my HQ squad.  Full shooting from the Landraider, Defiler, and Berzerkers only managed to kill a couple RWAS bikes and put 2 wounds on Sammael.  Whew! the Command Squad survived, but had some Raging Berzerkers about to assault.  The Helbrute immobilized one of the Landspeeders but it was still pointing right at some juicy targets for the rest of the game.  I didn't manage to do any wounds for my overwatch and the Berzerkers and Kharn made the 5" charge.  I accepted the challenge from Kharn with Sammael instead of the Librarian due to his higher initiative.  I guess I forgot I could have accepted with the champion as he also had a 4+ save from the Power Field.  Kharn's 7 attacks did roll a 1, killing a Berzerker.  The others all hit (thanks to hatred re-rolls) and 5 wounded with 2 going un-saved and killing Sammael.  He did manage to take a wound from Kharn before going.  The rest of his unit had some poor rolling, even with the re-rolls, and didn't manage to take out any more models.  (That Power Field really paid off there.)  The Librarian and Champion managed to kill a couple of Berzerkers and I actually won combat.  They then rolled a 1, passing the Hit n' Run test and moved back.
     On my turn, I took advantage of the exposed Chaos scum and unloaded many plasma and melta shots at them, killing all of the unit AND Kharn!  The Standard of Devastation was was pretty useful there, too, allowing the other 4 bikes in each squad to roll 16 shots, twin-linked.  The Libby tried to use Puppet Master on the Defiler, but Alec passed his Deny the Witch roll.  One of the Attack bikes snuck up behind the Landraider and got in a shot at half-range.  The shot penetrated and I rolled a 4(+2) and blew it up.  I still had two plasma squads on the left so with one, I took some shots at the Defiler with little effect.  The other unit and the Black Knights shot at the Rhino and brought it down to 1HP.  On my right, the Attack bike, melta squad, plasma squad and Landspeeders managed to just barely destroy the Rhino, and I think I got 1 HP off the Helbrute.  I was hoping the meltas would have popped it so my plasma could tear up the occupants, but alas, no good.

Turn 2:
     Retribution was swift.  The Heldrake and the Termies both came in from reserve.  That Baleflamer killed 4 from one plasma squad and 1 from another.  The left Rhino squad had the Burning Brand which also is AP3 Torrent.  They took out 4 of the 5 Black Knights, one of which was the Huntmaster.  The Defiler managed another hit, but my jink saves helped out.  Jink also saved the other Landspeeder from a PEN.  Berzerkers on the right actually ran AWAY from me, unable to assault since they had just disembarked from the destroyed rhino.  The Termies deep struck behind my forces on the right and shot down one or two bikes.  He played it safe on his location and wasn't close enough to do too much harm.  I was loving that he arrived inbetween so many AP1&2 weapons!  All my units made their leadership tests and no one could assault me.
     My shooting took out his last Rhino on the right, and then I shot up the disembarking squad with plasma.  They were left with 2 Berzerkers and the Chaos Lord.  This turn, Puppet Master got thru and I shot his Defiler's Battle Cannon at the recently disembarked Berzerkers on my right, taking down 4 models.  I then moved the command squad, melta squad, and 3 plasma squads into double tap range of the Terminators.  When the dust cleared (dust made out of Chaos Terminator particles), the whole unit was wiped out!  I got another Berzerker on the right with one Landspeeder and another HP off the Helbrute with the other.  Stupidly, I tried to charge the remaining Black Knight into the Chaos lord, who killed him with the Burning Brand before he could even make his assault move, DAMN AP3 TEMPLATES!!!!!  At this point, the only infanty he had left was one Lord, a unit of 2 Berzerkers, and a unit of 3 Berzerkers.  I really wish this would have been an objective mission....

Turn 3:
     Well, the Helldrake did some Marine-rape again, taking out the command squad, a plasma gunner, a melta gunner, and a couple other bikes.  The Defiler missed with his Battle Cannon.  My Librarian went down to some plasma pistol shots and then subsequent assault from the Lord.  I would love a higher initiative on that guy. 
     I went with everything I had at the Heldrake.  I believe it was 5 plasma guns and a melta, all at rear armour.  I think I managed 3 HITS!!! but he made EVERY SINGLE 5+ SAVE!!!!  There were 2 other glancing hits in the previous turn that he saved, too.  That thing is impossible to kill when he's rolling like that, oh well.  At this point, I had to leave to go to work.  I was up 6 to 3 kill points, due to so many of my units still having 1 or 2 models left.  I think there were 5 or 6 of my units that were single models (including the speeders).  We kinda called it a draw, as I know he could have taken out several units pretty quickly with that Heldrake so it's not like I would have held the lead without some bad luck on his part. 

     Overall, I really liked the performance of this list.  The amount of high strength, low AP shots that I can move into range at once is outstanding.  Let's count:  30 Plasma Gun shots, 1 Plasma Cannon, 4 Melta Gun shots, 2 Multi-Melta shots, and 4 Missle Launcher shots!  Then, add in the possibility of making all those bolters Salvo 2/4 and I don't know too many units that could survive.  I had bad luck popping those Rhinos.  I had to waste bolter shots to get further special weapons to destroy them.  I guess it evens out since that Landraider went down to one shot...  As expected, the Heldrake raped face and I actually managed 5 glance/pens in just 2 turns of shooting.  On average, that would have taken it down.  The ability of this army to swarm onto one target and overwhelm it was crutial to me taking out Kharn's unit and especially the Terminator squad, who got wiped out before they could do any harm. 

     Right now, I am trying to balance the Landspeeder to Attack Bike ratio.  I would love one more of each, but that will mean losing a bike squad.  And I bought a Darkshroud, but I don't know if I have the points anywhere for that.  Of course, without the AP3 templates, it is well worth the points so maybe I should give it a try.  Also, I didn't have any Grenade Launchers modeled and I forgot to put them in the list.  I think I will put one in both the command squad and the BK squad.  Let me know if you have any suggestions, I will try anything once!

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