Location: Inquisition intelligence and suveillance substation, located on ++ REDACTED++
, third planet of the ++REDACTED++
Colonel Dara Kam stood silently in the center of her ready room. Dozens of issues swam through her head, each demanding careful consideration before she could make a recommendation for action. While information gathering was often a tedious and unrewarding affair, Kam loved the challenge of taking all the disparate bits of information and linking them together in ways that reveal that which was hidden. Her contemplation was ended however, when a young Lieutenant, Sarina Pace, quietly knocked and at Kam's nod... entered.
Pace: "Ma'am, long ear drones report the interception of comms from one of the... Chapters of Interest, in the Ultima Segnum."
Kam: "Ultima Segnum? That's Ultramarine territory."
Pace: "Yes Ma'am, but a remote location on the fringe. Records indicate the Ultra presence in the area to be irregular at best."
Kam: "Very well, proceed."
Pace: "The intercepted message is an internal communication between a Mantis Warrior strike force and their flag ship, The Green Menace. It appears that an Imperial Guard commander on one of our planets in the sector has gone rogue, alone with a cadre' of elite followers and equipment. They have been raiding the cities and towns of the region for materials and supplies, then retreating to the high mountains to avoid a direct confrontation. Their raids are getting bolder and more costly, and they've stuck crippling blows to the loyal Guard's ability to function. The Mantis Warriors are responding to a distress signal intended for the Ultras that has of yet, gotten no acknowledgement. The Mantis Warriors have gained intel that the rebel guard will be moving through a high-alpine glade at the base of a glacial cirque, they plan to ambush them there."
Kam: "Curious that they would go out of their way to involve themselves in a local matter such as that. Though... the Mantis Warriors are trying to earn their way back into the good graces of the Imperium and their brother Astartes... a good turn might earn them a favorable consideration. Probe the planetary security records and confirm the circumstances, then report back to me."
Pace: "Yes Ma'am." The Armies Mantis Warriors
This army is "fully built" anywhere above 1850 points, so I was excited about the prospect of testing my army at full strength. HQ
: Chapter Master Phillipi Tarse (counts-as Pedro Kantor) - 175 HQ
: Librarian (gate, force dome) - 100 EL
: Iron Clad (HF
, 2x HK
missiles, assault launchers) in pod - 215 EL
: Dreadnought (HF
) in pod - 150 EL
: 10 sternguard (4 c-melta, 3 c-plas
, melta, flamer, PF
) in pod w/ locator beacon - 365
TP: 5 tac
razorback w/ dozer blade - 170
TP: 5 tac
razorback w/ dozer blade - 170
TP: 5 scouts (srg w/ combimelta & MB
) - 90
TP: 5 scouts (srg w/ combimelta & MB
) - 90 FA
: 5 scout bikes (3 astartes gren launchers, srg w/ PW
& homing beacon) - 195 FA
) - 65 FA
) - 65
HV: 5 devs
) - 150
Total: 2000 pts
Opening thoughts: Well, at this point value I pretty much get everything I need to make this army work (IF it's going to work). So it's "show time". Frigian 582nd
(from now on known as the "friggin' 582nd") HQ
Company Command Squad: Vox, Plasma Pistol, Lascannon, Master Of the Ordinance.....115
Veterans 1: Vox, Multi Meltax3, Grendadiers..........................135
Veterans 2: Vox, Multi Meltax3, Grenadiers............................135
Veterans3: Vox, Plasma Gun x3, Grenadiers...........................150
Veterans 4: Plasma Gun x3, Grenadiers.................................150
Veterans 5: Vox, Autocannon, Grenadiers.............................115
Chimera 1: Hunter Killer Missile, Extra Armour..........................80
Chimera 2: Hunter Killer Missile, Extra Armour..........................80
Chimera 3: Hunter Killer Missile, Extra Armour..........................80
Chimera 4: Hunter Killer Missile, Extra Armour..........................80
Devil Dog: Multi Melta, Hunter Killer Missile..............................145
Armoured Sentinel: Hunter Killer Missile, Lascannon..................80
Leman Russ Battle Tank 1: Lascannon, Plasma Cannons, Hunter Killer Missile.........215
Leman Russ Battle Tank 2: Lascannon, Plasma Cannons, Hunter Killer Missile.........215
Leman Russ Demolisher: Lascannon, Multi Melta Sponsons, Hunter KIller Missile.....220
Total: 1990 The Game
We occupied one of the tables near the window where it was sunny and nice. I fiddled with the terrain a bit in order to add a couple of pieces of LOS
blocking terrain, then gave dajobe the opportunity to make whatever changes he wanted.
dajobe rolled a "seize ground" mission with "pitched battle" deployment. I won the roll off and chose to go first. We rolled 3 objectives, so put one dead center and we each placed one, not surprisingly... near our deployment zones. Deployment
I followed the philosophy this army was built on. Put the two tac
squads in razorbacks into or behind cover near objectives (or in easy reach of objectives) and with good fields of fire. I anchored my right with the devs
who had a good view of the right edge of the board and a clear line of site to the central objective so they could shell any unit attempting to hold it.
dajobe then deployed THOUSANDS of tanks along his table edge. Two Russ's to hold the right flank and a single on the left, with lots of chimeras layden with verterans with melta & plasma in-between. He placed a veteran squad with autocannon in some woods on (his) left and his unmounted command squad in his center right.
I deployed my scout units to my left as far forward as rules would allow (18" from enemy). The bikes, flanked by the two speeders w/ scouts inside.
The three objective markers are marked with the blue arrows.
Next I took my scout move to move the three units as far forward as possible (6") so I was once again as close as I could get to my intended targets (the two tanks anchoring his flank). Again, I can't get closer than 12" with my scout move.
dajobe tries to steal the initiative and (thankfully) fails. Turn 1 Mantis Warriors:
Drop pod assault and the homing beacon on the scout sergeant allows me to bring my pods down right where I want them on the left flank. I decide to bring in the two dreads figuring they'd be less susceptible to fire than the sternguard and figuring the infantry would be more useful as a reserve for later in the game. After the pods come down, the LS
Storms move up and disgorge their scouts within charge range of my two main targets, the tanks, while the scout bikes move towards the center to get shots off at the command squad in the back.
Shooting at the tanks can only be described as an epic fail. Out of 6 close range melta and multi-melta shots... 1 fails to hit and 5... yes 5... fail to penetrate. (pyriel-, where is my Vulcan figure??!! I NEED him!!) The scout bikers pepper the command squad with grenade launcher and bolter fire, killing 4 and putting the unit to flight off the board edge. My dev
's have a good line of sight to his heavy weapon team and rains frag missiles down on them, wiping them out. My razorbacks hold up their end by shaking the 3rd Russ, leaving me "Russ free" on the right flank for at least one turn. Luckily I'm not limited to shooting and both scout units charge their Lehman Russ quarry on the left flank, blowing up both tanks with a combination of melta bombs and krak grenades. Unfortunately one squad loses two members in one of the tank explosions.
So... 345 pts of scouts took out 550 points of guard... not too bad. This "class" has promise. Frigian 582nd:
Angered by the loss of so much firepower and confounded by the loss of their commander... the guard revert to their nature... back off and shoot. The chimera scramble around to make some firing lanes and then everything opens up. My scout squad that suffered casualties from the tank explosion now suffers the wrath of the 582nd and is wiped (took a lot of shooting though). The Iron Clad is shaken... by crack missiles mounted on the chimerae I think. The other scout squad is also unloaded on and loses three members and their LS
Storm transport is brought down and then wrecked. Turn 2 Mantis Warriors
My last pod arrives with the sternguard and both HQs
. I opt for a high risk/reward drop into the middle of the guard line and while I scatter, I stay in the open area and land safely. The sternguard get out in combat squads with one HQ
each and commence to taking pot-shots at chimera. The dreads and LS
on the far flank continue to move forward and open up on a chimera. The two foot scouts move up to assault the chimera threatening to make a move on the objective while the bikes do the same.
Shooting immobilizes and strips the turrets off of 3 chimera. Subsequent assaults by the regular dread and the foot scouts blow up two chimera. The bikes assault the Sentinel and immobilize it and take out the las cannon. The veterans in the dread-assaulted chimera lose 4 in the explosion and flee. The other vets lose 4 in the explosion but stick around.
Hmmmm.... another 160 points for the scouts, you can probably add 135 for the vets that will eventually get taken down to 1 by the cluster mines (see next paragraph) and scout caused chimera explosion. Frigian 582nd:
Not wanting to be surrounded by infantry and auto-killed on a "wrecked" result, the vets in the close immobilized chimera unload. The last in-tact chimera and the Russ move out to give themselves some breathing room. The vets in the crater dive for the building in order to claim the objective and cover... and THATS when my scout biker's cluster mines go off... killing all but the sergeant... who fails his morale roll and flees.
In the shooting phase, the Russ unloads on my poor razorback, wrecking it... but the marines unload into the woods with no harm done. The other large vet squad shoots at my sternguard but my cover saves keep the unit in-tact. In the assault phase, my scout bikes finish off the now immobile sentinel with melta bombs and crak grenades. I'm guessing the reversing chimera and it's occupants shot at the bikes, but to no avail. Intermezzo
Pace: "Ma'am, I have the results of the data probe of the planetary security records."
Pace: "There is no record of a rebellion of any sort within the local Guard elements, or of any distress calls being sent... though an elite battalion IS on maneuvers in a mountainous area."
Kam: "Hmmmm.... send an investigative team to the area immediately..."
Pace: "That will take several days."
Kam: "Do you have a better suggestion? ... No? Then send the team, ... and Lieutenant..."
Pace: "Yes Ma'am?"
Kam: "Look into the history of this particular battalion, 150 years or so. See if there is any connection to the events preceding or during the Badab Rebellion."
Pace: "Yes Ma'am." Turn 3 Mantis Warriors
The far flank continues to move forward, firing as they go. The scout bikes move so that they have their choice of 3 targets, one of which is the rear armor of the Russ. Two-man scout squad also moves forward to attack the Russ. Sternguard don't have much to do so they just kind of hang around. The stranded marines in my woods start running for the central objective. My two HQ
's separate from their squads and prepare to charge the guardsmen that had exited their transport the turn before. Chapter Master Tarse takes out two with his fancy-schmancy bolter.
Shooting sees the far flank *finally* take out the chimera by the sternguard. The guys inside took 4 casualties in the explosion and exited stage left. The pods picked off the last vet from the squad caught in the cluster mines. Most importantly, the scout bikes used their Astartes grenade launchers to wreck the last Russ. One of my sternguard fires his combiplasma at something and takes himself out of the gene pool. The remaining razorback takes out the last remaining in-tact chimera killing 3 passengers in the process. My commanders assault the guard but the chapter master takes 2 wounds in the process... they do put them to flight and catch and destroy them. Finally they retreat behind the chimera to cover.
Hmmm.... that's another 215 points for the scouts! Frigian 582nd:
The guardsmen in the crater sit tight and dish out major pain to my scout bikes, wiping out the recruits and leaving only the sergeant. The lone chimera hull shoots it's heavy bolter at the sternguard with no result. Turn 4 Mantis Warriors:
Everything that can moves towards the remaining enemy. The tac
squad claims the central objective & the lone bike sergeant scoots forward to claim the third.
The last chimera is finally taken down by someone's melta-gun and and a ton of fire does almost nothing to the vets in the crater. In the assault phase, the lone bike sergeant charges into close combat with the vets, seeking vengeance for his lost squad. His power weapon does it's work and he puts the squad to flight, then slaughters them mercilessly as he chases them down.
That's.... another 135 points for the scouts. 1060 all-together. Not bad for a bunch of scrubs. Victory: Mantis Warriors!! Epilogue
Kam: "Lieutenant, report."
Pace: "Ma'am, report from the field just in."
Pace: "There are no signs of the missing guard or Mantis Warriors anywhere, though we believe the vale was located."
Kam: "What did they find there?"
Pace: "Nothing, the glaciers around the vale had apparently warmed in the spring sun and two entire mountainsides slid down into the cirque. The vale is buried under a quarter mile of rock and ice. We could find no direct evidence of either the Mantis Warriors or the so-called "rebels". The local guard command, having no evidence to the contrary and no reason to suspect foul play, is calling it a tragic accident."
Kam: "Unlikely... did you complete that research I asked you for? On the history of the Brigade?"
Pace: "Yes Ma'am. Your instincts were correct. That element of the 582nd was instrumental in providing valuable intelligence and material support in the early staged of the Badab Rebellion. These contributions resulted in the loyal forces gaining the upper hand against the rebels months faster than would have been possible otherwise. Their contribution was critical."
(There is a quiet pause as Colonel Kam furrowed her brow, her gaze drifting through Lt. Pace to the universe beyond and the machinations of men.)
Pace: "Ma'am? You... suspect this might have been a revenge killing by the Mantis Warriors?"
(Kam glanced at Pace briefly in a flash of acknowledgment, then drifted off in thought again.)
Pace: (stuttering) "But... that was over 100 years ago, none of these men had anything to do with that. The men involved in the Badab Rebellion have been dead for decades!"
Kam: "No Lieutennant, *some* of the men involved in the Badab Rebellion were on that planet less that 3 days ago." Finis
Final comment: There were 5 turns... but I lost one and can't for the life of me figure out where. Sorry.