Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Twelve Go wild In THe Badlands

Another Inquisimunda Battle

My opponent for this evening's dice rolling was Pat, after some Whatsapp messaging over the week I professed a desire to play test the Genestealer Cult list for ][munda and Pat decided to try out an Underworld gang of mercenarys to give me grief. They were called The Robbers Militant and they were a bunch of ne'er-do-wells with the Mercenary background, which meant for 10 TG Juves can get a +1 to either BS or WS. So Pat's gang was like this:

The Robbers Militant

Gaston, human leader, Hunting rifle
Darius, human heavy: Heavy stubber
Jonas, ratling ganger: hunting rifle,
Lucius, ratling ganger: hunting rifle,
Elden, ratling ganger: hunting rifle,
Marius, ratling ganger: hunting rifle,
Finwood, ratling ganger: hunting rifle,
Armand, ratling ganger: hunting rifle,
Stabber, beastman juve, sword.
Bruiser, beastman juve, sword.
Cordell, ratling juve, autopistol.
Alexi, human juve, autopistol.
Added to this mix was two hired guns, a bounty hunter and a ratskin scout called Zich. So as you can see, a rather shooty gang, with plenty of infiltrators to boot. I would have my work cut out for me.

So as part of my current obsession I'm trying to be involved with the development of the game. With this in mind I thought I'd playtest the Genestealer Cult list. I've been a lone time fan of this particular Games workshop creation, really interesting, creepy and with some bloody fantastic models, the nature of Genestealers is that that infect host races with their genetic material creating a mix of both races to form hybrids, along with normal looking humans, orks or whatever, they infiltrate the establishment gaining power and eventually overthrowing the planetary government and unconciously sending a psychic signal to tell the Tyranid hive Fleets to come and get them. The warband at it's Inquisimunda starting level is starting out on it's long road to planetary revolution. So with this list as my starting point, I created the following warband:

The Venerable Family Of Father Olifarch.

Magus Excreedius ; level 2 Wyrd; Impending Doom, Mind War, Deux Ex Machina, Embolden, autogun. 
Uncle Ick, purestrain Genestealer.
Cruddix, 1st Generation Hybrid, sword.
Bethselemin, 3rd Generation Hybrid, heavy stubber. 
Gorazk, 4th Generation Hybrid, autogun,  level 1 Wyrd; Deux Ex Machina.
Aothanp, 4th Generation Hybrid, autogun, level 1 Wyrd; Beastmaster.
Antwoord, Brood brother, stub gun.
Ninkom, Brood brother, stub gun.
Deekon, Brood brother, stub gun.
Farg, Brood brother, stub gun.
Qualid, Brood brother, stub gun.
Blug, Brood brother, stub gun.

As you may have noticed above, I really got lucky with my rolls for my Magus! My first roll on the minor power list was Well of Power, I rolled 2 extra powers! Then I rolled Warp Tap so I snagged another main power too! He is a seriously psychic dude! The first main power rolled was impending doom so, that's the power that I will suffer perils of the warp with a 2,11 and 12. As I'm trying out the list that is a work in progress I kept withing the gang limits, the harshest of these is no less than half the gang can be Brood Brothers which leaves me with six gang members that are Juve level but can't collect income for a game or two. The Hybrids are as naked as I could have them whilst keeping them viable. The two 4th Gens are level 1 Wyrds mainly because another feature of the gang is if the Magus is killed without another 4th Gen the gang collapses! The development of the rules for Stealers is something that has long been an ambition of mine. The was an old Citadel Journal Genestealer Cult gang that looked like a lot of fun but back then the Purestrains were (in my opinion anyway) way too tough. With a toned down version they seem ok, but with anything like this, the proof of the pudding is in the playtesting, so here we go with our first outing.....

Pre Game Gamesmanship

As you can see from the picture below there is a goodly amount of terrain, what you will also see is very few enemy fighters. This is mainly due to the 8 (yes eight!) infiltrators in Pat's gang. Two beastmen, two humans and the leader, also the Bounty Hunter, these were the models placed. The Ratskin also got Infiltration. We rolled for a scenario, which I won due to my lower gang rating, so I chose scavengers, then Pat swiftly altered the roll with his smart arsed Ratskin so that he chose instead, so we went with gang fight. In my dotage I neglected to use my Surveillance Officer to allow 3 of my crew to have the equivalent of penthouse infiltration! Thinking about that, I could have had Uncle Ick uncomfortably close to the enemy, oh well. My rough plan was to advance steadily using two Wyrds with Deus Ex Machina to make anyone shooting at them make ammo rolls every shot leaving Pat's light on close combat gang, hopefully at a disadvantage when things got within ovipositor range.

The Battlefield, featuring Pat's cool battle mat. Areas of note include; my newly finished jail, some vehicles without painted wheels in the centre and some dried apricots for sustenance on the right. 

The Game

Pat won first turn too even with my massive Subversion advantage and proceeded to shoot my Deux Ex machina Hybrid, and with that my underhand tactical play was a little be fubarred. As the heavy stubber human needed a 6 to hit I thought it was an acceptable risk, as it turns out, it wasn't. Pat then proceeded to place lots of hunting rifle armed ratlings around to set up quite a few no go areas around the table, this in itself was unfair as Genestealers are renowned for not liking to be told where they can and can't go. 

A 3rd Gen Hybrid starts the game in cover. He fully intends to bring hot metal death to the enemies of his family.

The Orc fortress in the middle of my deployment zone seemed pretty safe, I mean who can shoot through a tiny doorway at this range? From left to right 3rd Gen with stubber, Brood Brother, 4th Gen Wyrd, 4th Gen Wyrd, and three Brood Brothers.

Pat's force generally has a lot of infiltrators, this game was no different, there was a queue to find the best places to rain death down on my poor innocent genestealer gang.

A beastman juve was pretty much Pat's right flank assault squad.

Apparently shooting through a small doorway at this range was definitely possible, and my Deux Ex Machina tactic went down the toilet with this particular Hybrid getting a heavy stubber round to the pancreas (or wherever one needs to be hit to get Shellshock).

You might remember there was another Hybrid here a minute ago.
In my turn I advanced my warband forward menacingly. All except Bethselemin (heavy stubber) and Qualid (bullet attractor). On the left my main close combat group dodged carefully between cover.

This is what I wanted to do in my first turn before Pat started shooting  but for an appalling Subversion roll that shat on my plans. 
A couple of turns passed by with me being sneaky and Pat being shooty. Pat rolled quite a few hits and a lot of them were pinning hits that left 2 or 3 of his gang members out of ammo. It also left a couple of Brood Brothers dragging themselves around slowly dripping half human half genestealer blood all over the place.

The Magus and Purestrain bravely hide behind a pathetically expendable Brood Brother.

A ratling sneaks about whilst a prisoner watches impassively as the bullets fly.

A meat shield is only useful when it's upright.

This particular Ratling was convinced by the Magus to go home, Portents of Doom Stylee. This is fun power. It will be more fun on a gang that has a hugely expensive heavy that I can convince to take an early bath, but one can only work with what one is given.

Finally got some more expendable gang members between my heavy stubber Hybrid and the nasty mercs.

A game of peek-a-boo between a Brood Brother and a Ratskin Scout is played.

My absolute combat monster was unwilling to let himself get in the firing line for most of the game.
A rare reverse angle view of the game. Down on ground level you can just about see an ammoless heavy stubber armed human. Uncle Ick particularly wanted to talk to him.

The publicity shot for my game. Grey tyres are all the rage these days.

Some serious skulking around was done in this game.

Midway through the game my guys are advancing steadily, except uncle Ick who doesn't really seem to know where he wants to go. It was around this time that my 4th Gen Hybrid took out Pat's leader with a lucky shot!

Uncle Ick scampers along completely unaware something unpleasant in the shape of a bullet was speeding its way towards him. Unseen in this picture is a perfidious ratling shooting totally innocent Genestealers.

This was where it was mostly happening. What didn't happen the whole game was my heavy stubber armed Hybrid hitting a single thing.

The ratskin scout gets a bullet, and a Brood Brother and a Beastman duke it out.

Poor Uncle Ick. All he wanted to do was show some love! This was a gamble that didn't pay off, I was thinking he could handle a single hunting rifle shot. I was wrong.

Final image of the game, a Hybrid is now going tete a tete with the beastman, a previously downed Brood Brother is up again, and I fail my bottle roll.

The game ended in my gang bottling it. There was about 3 or 4 casualties on each side but Pat was up on enemies shot. There was a couple of mistakes I made, mainly the position of my vital-to-the-plan Hybrid during set up, and believing Uncle Ick that he could handle a hit from a hunting rifle. Not availing of my surveillance officer was a bit dopey too. Post game was pretty harsh too as one of my Brood Brothers who beat an opponent in close combat died, and the two serious injuries received was a hand injury to a Brood Brother and Shellshock to my Deux Ex Machina Hybrid. leadership 6 now, but all is not lost as Brood Telepathy lets the whole gang use the Magus leadership. I also got a few good advances, I now have a Brood brother and a 4th Gen Hybrid with an extra wound each. Sadly, the aforementioned Brood brother also has the hand injury! Two Brood Brothers got initiative increases too, but none enough to take them to ganger status so very little Throne Geld was made. Another Brood Brother gained Impetuous so he has gained some value too. As there was only 2 fit Hybrids that could collect anything anyway, my net gain was 5 Throne Geld and that was including my 25 TG bonus due to the difference in gang ratings. Considering I lost a Brood Brother, my Cults first foray was enjoyable but very painful. Magus Excreedius will have to go back to his lair and plot revenge.

The post game sequence was slighlty meh for Pat too as he got a strength increase for beastman juve and a ratling got +1 attack! financially he did better than me but he is going to retain the Scout as he fits in with the whole Infiltrate of Die ethos of his gang. I hope he brings another bounty Hunter along as I have dreams of capturing him, converting him to the Genestealer cause then capturing many more enemy fighters to expand my cult without the expense. Anyway thanks to Pat for a great game and hopefully there will be a different outcome next time.

Thanks for reading!

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