After a one-year hiatus, the Apocalypse Box tempted me to get back into the game! A buddy was gracious enough to give me a 1.500 points re-introduction.
Flyrant w/ Devourers, Rending Claws; Warlord (damage reduction trait), Relic (Chamelionic Mutation), PSI: The Horror and Paroxysm
Neurothrope, PSI: Psychic Scream
18 Termagants, 4 with Devourers
Broodlord w/Ymgarl Factor Relic (-1CP), PSI: Catalyst
18 Genestealers, with 4 Acid Maws
18 Genestealers, with 4 Acid Maws
3 Ripper Swarms
6 Hive Guard with Impaler Cannons (4 proxied; 3 are on the painting table)
I was matched against this gorgeous Imperial Fists army:
Psyker in Terminator Armor
Captain in Terminator Armor
2x 5 Scouts
Marines w/ Plasma and Heavy Plasma
Marines w/ Rocket launcher
Tremor Artillery w/ Techmarine
Land Raider Crusader
3 Centurions, deployed in Land Raider
(spent 3 on upgrading his Captain)
My opponent had already set up a standard mission for us, which involved capturing 5 symmetrical Objectives on the Board. Each Round, they would be scored after the second player’s turn; at the start of the round, we would roll which Objective would give 2 instead of 1 VP
, on a 6 all would score 2 VP
I had to deploy first but got first turn. He spent CP
’s to give his army +1 to armor saves. I deployed both units of Stealers in one blob with the Malanthrope and Brood Lord in tow; I had first thought about splitting them up, but wanted to keep the HQ
’s relevant for both units. Hive Guard deployed behind a house, the chaff (Hormies and Termagants) took my objective markers. Big Termagant blob walked up the middle with a Neurohtrope in tow. WHT and Rippers deep strike.
He deployed defensively, using one unit of scouts to block my ‘stealer movement in. The Land Raider was kept out of LOS
, all marines were deployed in cover.
Die roll comes up on 6 - all objectives score 2 points this round.
I run up most of my stuff with advances. I spent CP
to double the advance of one stealer unit, advancing a cool 20”.
Psi Phase, Catalyst goes up on the stealers in the back, and the Neurothope kills some Marines.
Shooting phase, the Hive Guard split their fire. With his cover saves, I don’t bother with the Land Raider, but I take out the Land Speeder and get the Tremor gun down to one wound. I spend 2 CP
’s to shoot again, splitting fire again and figuring that 2 Hive Guard will kill the Tremor gun – I was too greedy here, leave it alive and kill 3 more Marines in cover.
Charge Phase, this is where it gets interesting. I charge one unit of Scouts with 18 stealers, wipe them out and then encircle a member of the other Scout unit so he can’t leave the melee next round. As my opponent is a more experienced 40k
player, he helped me out a lot with the positioning here. Classy guy!
His turn, he maneuvers his Marines as a charge shield, disembarks the Centurions and starts shooting. He wipes out the big Termagant blob in the middle, and then puts the LRC
fire into the second stealer unit, only killing 3 of them thanks to Malanthrope, 5++, Feel No Pain and some Pro Dice Rolling by me. Tremor gun shoots at the same unit and he uses CP
to halve their movement next turn. The melee wipes out the second Scout squad.
I hold three objectives, he only one, so it’s 6-2 for me.
Objective 3 will score double this turn. It’s a building in my deployment zone with 10 Gaunts in it. Hooray!
My opponent is very boxed in and on the backfoot. My stealers move to charge his Marines and Psyker, potentially engaging the Land Raider later. The other stealer unit hobbles forward. The Ripper Swarm Deep Strikes Objective 2, while the WHT deep strikes behind enemy lines. The Neurothrope wipes out three more marines in the PSI Phase. WHT puts The Horror on the Land Raider. Catalyst goes up on the Stealers who want to go into melee (have to spend a CP
on a reroll here).
In the shooting phase, the Hive Guard concentrate fire on the Centurions, but thanks to a nearby captain giving them +1 to saves, they only manage to take out one, despite me spending 2 CP
on another round of shooting. The WHT tries to shoot the Tremor gun, which got healed up last round, and once again leaves it on one wound. The stealers charge the Marines and Psyker, while the WHT fails to charge the tremor gun. I wipe out the Marines and leave the Psyker on one wound. Crucial mistake here – I could have spent one CP
on implant attacks (Psyker suffers a mortal wound on 2+) to kill him, then engage the Land Raider with at least one Stealer.
His turn, my buddy is itching to shoot Xeno scum. 5-man squad of marines moves on the Ripper Swarms at Objective 2, while the rest of the army more or less stays put. The Psyker falls back out of the melee. Lysander would love to shock onto the Hive Guard, but I spread out some of my termagants and hormagants to leave him no landing space, so he shocks into his own deployment near the WHT. The Land Raider sinks all its shots into the Stealers in front of him, but thanks to Catalyst, 5++ saves and his -1 to hit from The Horror he only kills 5-6 of them. The Centurions have to mop up the rest. Lysander goes in on the Hive Tyrant, but leaves him on two Wounds. The Marines on Objective 2 only deal a single wound on my brave Ripper Swarms.
I hold 3 objectives, including the one that counts double, while he holds 2. The score is 10-4.
We roll for the scenario, and once again one of my firmly entrenched Objectives will score double. We look at the board state – I can wipe out his Marines on Objective 2 easily (14 stealers vs. 4 Marines), and he has nothing that can get there. I will score 4, maybe even 5 points this round, while he can only score 1. Even if the game goes on, it doesn’t look all that good for him. As it’s already midnight on a work day, we decide to call it quits. Victory for the swarm!
Getting to play with 13 CP
was worth the added investment in some additional troops and a Neurothrope. I looked up which Stratagems would help my gameplan the most beforehand, and kept looking for opportunities to make the most of them. I made good use of rerolls, double Advance and double shooting turns, but sadly forgot implant attacks. I’m not sure adding the Malanthrope at this low point level was clever, as it’s strictly support for almost 1/10th of my points. The WHT also didn’t really do much this game, but that's on me and my bad positioning. Thanks to the stealers, my output and board presence was way better than I anticipated, although I will add some more big guns (Exocrines and Tyrannofex) for 2.000 points. The three-die advance and double advance stratagems where so good that I’ll stick with Kraken for the time being.
Getting a game of 40K
in felt great! I usually focus on other Tabletops (Guild Ball at the moment), but the setting and miniatures of 40K
always draw me back. I’ve been collecting and painting this army for over 10 years now, and even though the paint scheme is as basic as it gets (dipping was all the rage when I started painting them), I’m happy that I managed to keep the look and the feel of the army consistent over the years. The itch is back - the three Hive Guard (which arrived just two hours before the game and where glued together in a hobby frenzy) have already received their first coat of paint