Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Inner Circle Tournament - Game 1

The Cadre moved in the cover of darkness to mask their movements. The grav-tanks of the Tau Cadre slowly drifted Through the glades and over the watery lands of Thoth, maintaining the silence of a prowling hunter.

Old Shatter Hands moved with his bodyguard as the Fio'la radioed in. "Sir, sensory equipment is picking up a disturbance ahead. There seems to be some movement about 100 meters northwest but our sonar cannot get an accurate reading on it."

"Copy" Old Shatter Hands sent his bodyguard to survey the ground ahead. "Trackers online." The great robotic battlesuit scanned the horizon. "I've got nothing, sir"

"Keep the collumn moving and get me a visual from Mantas in orbit." Suddenly the sky lit up with fire and a great bolt of red hell blasted the XV8s of Shas'ui Rymo's team. In a single moment the entire team had been wiped from reality.

With no time to mourn, Old Shatter Hands commanded "prepare for battle, Eldar pirates ahead!"

Game one kicks off. I am facing a Mech Eldar Army which causes me to slap my forehead. I'm DOOMED. I play against Mech Eldar all the time and I am always surprised when this kind of army doesn't win. It hits really hard and is extremely difficult to pin down because of it's speed. On top of that, all those Wave Serpents downgrade my Railguns to Strength 8. I look at his army and pick my kill-points, marked below with an asterisk.
10 Dragons*
Wave Serpent*
9 Dragons
Wave Serpent*
10 Dire Avengers
Wave Serpent
10 Dire Avengers
Wave Serpent
Fire Prism
Fire Prism
Fire Prism
We roll for deployement and he gets to choose. He chooses to go second and picks out my 3 Fire Warrior squads as kill points, the Broadsides and the Piranhas. I set up a defensive wagon circle with two Hammerheads and reserve my Devilfish and the Piranhas. As expected, he reserves everything...could he be a follower of the Way of Saim Hann as I am?

I decide there is no point in moving out of my defensive wagons circle so we simply move to the second turn. I roll for reserves and my Piranhas and one Devilfish come on. He gets in a 2 Fire Prisms and 3 Serpents. 2 Serpents move flat out to attack and his Fire Prism fires off a volley. He nails my Deathrain dead on with an S9 blast that covers all three. I fail all 3 cover saves and the unit is wiped out. With that goes my cool, I was planning on relying on that unit heavily to knock out the transports attacking me. I start to grumble and for the record, this was a very bad thing to do. I hate when my opponents start to whine and this is what I was doing. Maybe its the cold I'm coming off of, or maybe its the Mech Eldar that is pissing me off but I shouldn't have gotten my panties in a bunch like I did. Ah well, live and learn.

My turn, I start to work the flanks a bit, my Piranhas attack and I try to knock out the transports. If I can get the Eldar on foot, I can hurt them bad. But I don't have any luck in knocking out transports until late in the game. He drops his fire dragons to roast a devilfish, but they get wiped out by Old Shatter Hands. With Wave Serpents rear exposed, I managed to drop their transport too. The Dire Avengers drop to attack the Broadsides but in an amazing show of luck the Broadsides make all their saves against 30 bladestorm shots. They get charged by the Dire Avengers, who simply cannot cause any wounds on them. The Broadsides and Dire Avengers get locked in a combat that last until the end of the game, with Broadsides stomping on the fragile Eldar.

With all of these Eldar breaking up my lines, I realize that he has only two troops and they are both locked in combat with my Broadsides. I decide its time to rack up some kill-points and try to take at least one objective for the win. I kill a Vyper and 2 Wave Serpents for 3 kill points with some great shooting. He kills two Fire Warrior squads but the Piranhas are zipping around avoiding any damage. Then the game ends on turn 5. Eldar have 2 kill points and zero objectives. Tau have 3 kill points and zero objectives. I have never been more surprised by a win in my life. Retrospectively, I think all my whining early on gave my opponent a false sense of confidence. He committed his Dire Avengers where he shouldn't have, thinking they would destroy the Broadsides in short order. The Dire Avengers had been unfortunately min-mixed for bladestorming. If he had chosen a power sword on his Exarch and made them more flexible, the Broadsides would have eaten it. Goes to show that over-specializing can cost you in the long run.

I gave my opponents high marks on painting and sportsmanship for putting up with my grumbliness. His army was really well-painted. His Farseer was gorgeous, too bad I have no pictures of it.

Game 1: Tau Victory.


Pete W said...

Sounds like a very tough game OSH. Looking at that turn 3 photo makes me wince. All those eldar skimmers on top of your lines and able to move away quickly, ouch.

I second the notion that one shouldn't charge broadsides without a power weapon (unless you're have a huge number of attacks, eg. 20 boy) as it is too hard to put wounds on them and get through the 2+

Grajo said...

Yep, people tend to underestimate the close combat of tau battlesuits (which isn´t the best in the game anyway), but if you attack ´em with average guys with no power weapons you can get a surprise.

Old Shatter Hands said...

Thats true. 2 attacks at S5 on a model with a 2+ save is no joke!!!

Pete W said...

And two wounds. That's the key point in many cases. Getting one attack through a 2+ is one thing, but if you don't kill the broadside they can keep on stomping on you.

Pearlygates said...

Looked like you got heavily swamped in that game. Good job that your Broadsides withstood such a beating, otherwise it would have been a draw!

Did your Piranhas not do much in that game? You didn't go into much detail with them.

For some reason I got a serious case of the giggles because in the pro-log story you call OSH Old Shatter Head. Really don't know why it made me laugh!

looking forward to the next Batrep!

Old Shatter Hands said...

That made me laugh out loud too now that you pointed it out!

I think the Piranhas tried to melt some stuff but failed and spent the rest of the game avoiding fire because I knew they were one of his kill points.

CJ said...

Nice game OSH! seems like you really got the bad note of the skimmers. Still very well done getting the objectives in focus at the end of the game. Always worth it to play on objectives end game most players just go forvictory points in a quest to kill more of your models. Off course this is not always the case, hwas surprised by the tacktiks from a dropped team on my recent tournament. So be carefull never to undere estimate the funny talk of your opponent.

Looking forward to the other games must have been a great challange to have mulitple mission objectives in one game :)

Cheers CJ

Pearlygates said...

Oh, CJ's comment just reminded me, what was your secret objective in this match?
And what was your opponent's??

Old Shatter Hands said...

I'm not sure what my opponents were. Mine were rather difficult for the most part. The only two I remember (there were 5) were have at least one fast attack unit survive, which I got, and win without causing a wound in CC, which I didn't get because the broadsides killed a couple Dire Avengers with their stomping feet!

Dhinanta Aloke said...

Any chance of you posting a list of all the secret missions? Were they army specific?

Old Shatter Hands said...

I'll post what I can remember. No they weren't army specific at all but they were completely random and kind of weird in some cases.

Dhinanta Aloke said...

The "cause no wounds in close combat" seems like it would be ideally suited to Tau. I'm really surprised you turned out not to get that one.

Adam said...

I think you played the best you could considering the circumstances. Sounds like the Piranhas came in handy as a counter unit again.

As for the Eldar army, it's not the best list in the world and it sounds like he played it pretty poorly considering his transports are nigh invincible against the Tau.

I played a mech eldar army a while back and the guy just sat in his tanks and annihilated me because I couldn't match him for anti-tank firepower...after hitting my Broadsides with loads of AP2 guns of course!

Old Shatter Hands said...

Yes, I was seriously lucky that he did not drop a mess of Fire Dragons on my broadsides to roast em alive! I think the only reason I won this one was that he took 2 weak and easy kill points, the Vypers, and he ended up exposing his rear armor on his tank here and there, allowing me to by-pass the serpents' energy field. I think a good tactic against this kind of army is to spread out a bit and to try to get as many rear armor shots as possible.

Smurfy said...

Mech Eldar is basically scissors to your paper in 40k :P

Every army has such a thing, funny thing is that Tau can be the scissors back to the Mech Eldar's paper too.

Both have a hard time vs each other.

Iggy said...

Nice work there - too true, Tau can be underestimated in cc. A recent game with Gredus from over at Combinedarms saw my 6-man jetbike council locked in combat for 3 turns with broadsides. Go go Tau!