Saturday, 14 January 2017

The Search For Shpock

Magus Excreedius was annoyed. Two insignificant humans were unwittingly hindering his plans. Preacher Quisley Tiburculosis was a popular religious speaker who would be of great benefit to the cult if he could be 'persuaded' to preach what Excreedius wanted him to say. And Jocksie Shpock was the quartermaster for the massive manufactorium of Hive of Septus, one that produced weaponry for the Imperial Guard, bringing him into the fold would make any armed insurrection far easier. As luck would have both humans were due to be in the same part of the Hive at the same same, so killing two Ptera Squirrels with one stone would be easy. Two of the less disturbing Brood Brothers were set on survailance duty as luck would have it both targets were in buildings barely a 100 metres from each other. The warband was assembled and final instructions were given. Just as the his cult was ready to strike  another armed group entered the fray! These seemed to be a mixture of Tau and humans, whatever their motives they must not be allowed to steal the cults prey!

Space, The Final Frontier

The table before models got put on it.
Hot on the heels of my last stunning defeat, here's another attempt at victory! A game of Inquisimunda verses the ever wily Pat. My Genestealer warband AKA The Venerable Family of Father Olifarch take on Pat's Rogue Trader group called The Greater Profit. They had a bit of argy bargy against my Inquisition Cell a few weeks back. After my previous game Raiders Of The Lost Monolith, a game with Necrons and an actual point. I wanted to play another game without resorting to the ones in the Necromunda rulebook.

The Plot

Preacher Quisley Tiburculosis and Jocksie Shpock are two individuals that Magus Excreedius wants to convert to the four armed way of thinking, via some heavy hypnotism and application of Uncle Ick's ovipositor. The Preacher because he can influence more hive dwellers to accept a more alien look to their Emperor and Shpock because he is quartermaster for a huge weapons factory that could go a long way to arming a rebellion. In any case, Excreedius wants them in his cult's pocket and intends to use violent means to get them in it. The cult has been observing the two for the last few day cycles and both humans will be within a couple of hab buildings distance of each other. The serendipitous  nature of this coincidence is not lost on the Magus so he has decided to launch a full scale raid and capture mission. As is commonly the case in fiction, a Rogue Trader crew, known as The Greater Profit have been spying on the Stealers, surmised what was going on and launched what could be termed as a preemptive rescue mission.

  The Rules

As I created this mission on the fly, it was very basic. Three building all along the centre of the table. Each human is in a seperate building. Once a model enters the building he searches for the quivering Quisley or Jocksie. A successful Investigation roll made in the shooting phase (but now with hindsight, probably better at the end of the turn) will mean one of the individuals are there. Then to encourage the person to leave with them a successful Subversion roll is to be made. This should be done at the start of the turn. Suitably terrified, threatened or ordered the target will follow the member of the warband to freedom (or in the case of my Genestealers - eternal indoctrination), but enough of their free will remains that they won't run, walking pace only. If a gang leads off both humans they win, or if the other gang bottles it, they win. In the event of a game ending due to bottling out, any target in custody is 'rescued' on a successful initiative test, otherwise they escape.

My 3rd Gen Bethselemin (he of the heavy stubber that looks like a rocket launcher) and a trampish looking Brood Brother - Deekon ready themselves for battle.

Magus Excreedius and another Brood Brother, Blug are ready for the off.

These two Wino looking chavs are actually competent fighters! Antwoord and Farg, they are both juves but are hoping the Genestealer Cult High Command are prepared to issue them real guns, instead of the ones that have their firing pins removed in cost cutting measures.

The rescue team make ready to thwart my proud Genestealer plans!
My general plan was to use Uncle Ick's infiltration to quickly get into one of the building's (no one could infiltrate actually into it) and lurk in there to deter inquisitive Tau and/or humans and sprint a second force into an adjacent building with a fairly large force, this should, give me the chance to find at least one of the humans, giving me a reasonable chance of a win. Of course Pat would be doing his utmost to spoil my plan, so as usual the dice gods would be pivotal, so a slight nod in their direction was in order to win, you never know.
Pat has painted his mdf terrain and it looks very good. The two models you see on the tower have taken up very annoying firing positions.

Some more Tau greater do gooders advance to the building on the left.
Left to right : Josksie Shpock and Quisley Tiburculosis, and old Rogue Trader era technician and a rather nice Black Tree Design cleric. I like the cleric as he is armed with a goblet and a sword, just the sort of drunk minister you'd expect in the 41st Millenium. Sadly they have incongruous bases, them being green and all. I will redo them, but it might have to wait for my retirement. 

My surveillance officer nee vents allowed me to plonk some more hybrids on this building. From left to right Aothanp (armed with Longlas),Gorazk (autogun), Qualid (Brood brother) and Cruddix, 1st gen only trusted with a sword. down to their left is Magus Excreedius and Blug.

A Brood Brother has to use his legs like a chump while Uncle Ick just appears in front of him due to his Infiltration.
So Ick swiftly gets into the building on my left, followed by two slower brood brothers. Cruddix belts it along the walkway in the centre to get into that building, followed by some shootier hybrids and a brood brother. He manages to survive as he has the dive skill, which allows him to run then hide stopping any of that shooting at him nonsense. I suppose the tactic was sort of a refused flank as on the right I was a little short staffed. Excreedius and his brood brother minder advanced up the centre on the ground level to further reinforce that area.

The Human/Tau menagerie advance towards the building on my left, but Uncle Ick has the speed to get in there and start ransacking. Unfortunately due to his (and in fact all purestrain genestealers foibles) he can't ransack, just attack and kill. I'm of the opinion that Quisley Tiberculosis was standing very still in a corner but as Ick can't be told to look he waited poised ready to unleash hell on any enemy fighter foolish enough to enter the building. 

Two leering Hybrids (that's their only expression) get some cover behind the mid thigh height parapet. Honestly, it's almost like the Imperium wants it's citizens to fall to their deaths!

This particular leering Hybrid has the skill dive, so his chances of surviving a game are greatly increased. His other abilities do not extent to the power to adequately find hidden humans in medium sized buildings.

Uncle Ick patiently waits the other side of the door (he's placed on the roof for aesthetics but in reality hes just the other side of the double doors at the base of the building). 

That's right, more ammo problems for the cult. Anyone would think heavy stubber bullets were made of gold or something!
My 3rd Gen hybrid ran out of ammo in the first or second turn. Whoever it was that got hit, I hope it hurt. I really need to model a hybrid sitting down lighting a cigarette or playing candy crush on his tablet. If I had the resources I could fund an entire figure range called 'warriors slacking off' it could have such gems as 'trooper calling in sick' and 'soldier thoroughly cleaning his weapon, so  thoroughly he misses the battle', 'corporal doing paperwork', maybe even 'captain berating the native baggage handlers so he turns up late at the back of the big push'. Stuff like that.
Two Brood Brothers enter the building to my left and the diving Hybrid enters the central building through the trapdoor to start searching. The rooftop sniping at each other was producing results, a Tau is gone from the table.

This is where I make, if not a fatal mistake, a very annoying one. Pat advances up to the building containing Uncle Ick, but due to what is known in medical circles as a brain fart, I forget to charge out into the Wyrd, killing him them following up into the human behind. Oh the humanity! The following turn Uncle Ick runs out and half kills a human but it's not the same, three of Pat's gang have moved on and poor old Uncle Ick feels hollow inside.😩

A Tau writhes in agony in the top left of the pic whereas his uncaring comrades advance towards possible doom! The possible doom takes the form of Magus Excreedius and a couple of Brood Brothers who are ever so close to becoming gangers. The next couple of turns Excreedius shows his enemies just how dangerous a psyker he is, which is probably all things considerd - ok, by having a 50/50 success rate with his mind shenanigans. 
A lot of my warband seem to be lying down on the job! It's not as bad as it seems as Pat's horribly accurate gang are using a prototype ammunition called Durex Fetherlite, it penetrates but does no lasting damage.

Everybody dusts themselves off, and gets on with the business of attempted kidnapping. On the right of the picture my Longlas armed hybrid goes to town picking off unsuspecting Rogue Trader crew members. 

Having dispatched a member of the Greater Profit, Uncle Ick hides under a walkway pretending to be some kind of troll. All I need to do now is have Pat fail quite a lot of close range shots and the ovipositor will be out again.
Uncle Ick leaves the table after some pretty accurate shooting vis a vis the Wyrd and some of the other Rogue Trader crew. Around this time the two brood brothers in the left hand building lean out the windows shooting at the now outflanked Wyrd and chums. Sadly, giving stub guns to brood brothers is a heartbreaking undertaking as they are barely able to hit the building they are standing in! 
Uncle Ick's hiding under the bridge ploy fails.
Over on the right side of the table there was some considerable carnage. So much in fact that I failed to take pictures of it! Pat was hitting my fighters but not wounding them. Wyrd powers zinged about. Impending Doom failed again, but Mind War blew the brains out of an ill prepared human. While all this violence was happening, Pat found Jocksie Shpock. My cunning scenario had once again handicapped my own gang due to their piss poor investigation rating. 

"Do you want to come back to my place?". After I think 2 turns Pat finds Shpock. The two two other buildings I had been searching however didn't yield Tiberculosis. Considering my 1st Gen Hybrid had been ransacking the central building for 3 or 4 turns, it was either a total wreck inside, or the Hybrids search skills were pretty similar to the Romans in Life of Brian. Sadly he didn't even find a spoon.

Pat's casualties were mounting due to some good dice rolling on my part and he failed his bottle roll. He also failed his attempt to convince Shpock to come along with his warband, but there must've been something disconcerting about the serious Tau stare urging him to 'get in the van' or whatever it was he said. Jocksie instead fancied his ability to go back in the building and await the cops. My gang having failed compleatley to find anyone left with a moral victory and quite a few experience points.  

The Aftermath

Well I managed to drive Pat's force off but neither target was 'acquired' so the mission was a bit of a failure. A fair bit of advance rolls were made (10) with only 1 lasting injury. Excreedius and blug both got the dive skill, Cruddix got beserk charge (now all I need is for him to actually get into combat), Bethselemin my heavy stubber operative got +1 BS to 4 and Gorazk got +1 ST. Best of all Uncle Ick got T +1 to 5 and so did Qualid (up to 4), Antwoord my other Brood Brother got jump back and the only lasting injury was Qualid getting blinded in his left eye. poor old Qualid, partially deaf, half blind, and only 16 experience points into his cult career. It's not easy being a brood brother! Other good news is two Brood Brothers are now fully fledged gangers so they can start earning serious stacks for the cult. Things are looking up for the generally cash strapped half alien, half human brood. In other cult news I'm hoping to give my force a run out in a game of 40K in the near future. I may even write it up as a fully formed battle report. Watch this space......

Following the mission's failure, Excreedius was vexed. Not only had both targets escaped, they had both taken precautions to make a second attempt hazardous. Bodyguards and servo skulls had made an appearance. This would mean a much more meticulously planned acquisition or some less valuable but unprotected humans would have to be selected. To make matters worse, Uncle Ick had been given the impression that Father Olifarch was displeased, and his displeasure could mean a radical reorganisation of this particular cell of the cult. "A bold new scheme to increase his standing was required. What to do? What to do?"........

Thanks for reading.

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