Tuesday, 4 July 2017

40K 8th Edition! Two 1000 Point Batreps.

Two Xenos Invasion in One Evening

Greetings. As I so often do, a bandwagon rolled into town, and I leapt upon it. That bandwagon was the new 40K and as there are dozens (in not billions) of blog posts about the new game I will jump fairly quickly into the games and draw some conclusions afterwards. As the title suggests, we (myself, Aaron & Stuart) arranged to have a couple of games. As we'd all seen the leaked army lists forces were mustered and 3 1000 point armies assembled round Stuart's abode. Two armies were filthy xenos (Stuart's Tyranids and Aarons Tau) whilst the Imperium of man was represented by my Imperial Guard. I say Imperial Guard as I'm not totally on board with this Astra Militarum malarkey. Not yet anyway.

The Krablokistan 47th

There is something very exciting about writing an army list for a game system you know but has been totally overhauled and to be honest my army was just what I had painted (from 3rd edition 40K). So whether it was to play well or not remains to be seen. Here is what I brought;

HQ; Company Commander, Primaris Psyker,
Troops; 4 Infantry Squads with 2 meltaguns, a plasmagun, 2 missile launchers and a heavy bolter.
Elites; Commisar, Astropath, Preacher, flamer special weapon squad and ratlings.
Fast Attack; Bane Wolf
Heavy Support; Leman Russ with plasma cannons, battlecannon lascannon and storm bolter. Autocannon heavy weapon team and mortar heavy weapon team.
Dedicated Transport; A Chimera to carry an infantry squad.
So that's what I have painted to an ok (1995ish) standard.

The Krablokistan 47th regiment is what I'm calling them, if long term survival happens to my force they may even get insignia and shit. the fact that models have goblin green bases really shows their age! The planet that these battles are set on are Killa La Neck in the Cyavunnh system, a generally peaceful agri world with a few sporadically situated urban areas.

The Battle Against The Tau 

The Krablokistan 47th were put on high alert when some medium sized herbivore herders reported a small scale firefight in the eastern R'Yak plains (Stuart & Aaron had a game before I got there). Duly warned Company Commander Djmetri 'two guns' Vlashvilli mobilised his troops to meet whatever threat had landed on his doorstep. It turned out to be a small force of Tau do gooders, the Jehovah's Witnesses of the 41st Millenium selling copies of the Tidewall magazines and talking to everybody about 'the Greater Good'. Vlashvilli was having none of it and battle was joined.

My forces were deployed thusly. The plan was to scoot round with both the chimera and Bane Wolf  delivering hot flaming death on the Tau whilst theremains of the force moves up and engages the remains. Simple yet elegant?

Aaron's force were deployed like so, sorry about the blurry picture. Aaron is also a talented and prolific painter so I envisage these will all be painted by Wednesday week.
We set up according to the new shiny rulebook and placed objective counters (perhaps 6 on a 4' x 4' table is too much) then started deploying. Aaron finished 1st so I had the advantage of placing my Leman Russ ready to deal death at his tank asap. I then placed my ratlings nice and close to the Etherial as I thought he might prove and irritation (spoiler alert; he would). I then rolled to see if I could seize initiative and I did, which was nice. The opening salvos damaged the tank killed a couple of scouts and sniped 2 wounds from the Ethereal.

Form an orderly line towards the blue faced xenos, men. No running just calmly walking to their guns.
Then Aaron started shooting back and many a brave guardsman died to unpleasant alien technology. The Leman Russ took a fair bit of attention but the Tau struggled to wound it and when it did I managed to roll a 6 to save from the -3 save weapon (whatever that was). the ratlings were badly shot up this turn and the remaining one or two scarpered in true ratling fashion.  The deep striking Crisis Suit blokes landed in the bottom right of the picture below wiping out my mortars who were having their first ever outing for Krablokistan.
Turn 1s casualties, yes a single Tau model.

Shortly before the sneaky Tau ambushed my brave weapons teams.
My second turn was more effective than the first. The Bane Wolf dead a quick 180૦ turn and whizzed back to spray the Tau with some noxious liquid. The Chimera's crew passengers got out and the Chimera went be with the Ethereal, or more likely torch his ass. Mainly due to his trait of giving  strange alien rerolls at inconvenient times. My Leman Russ won the tank battle seeing it's Tau counterpart get wrecked, and it then obligingly blew up destroying the drone next to it and damaging the big gunned thing beside it. My shooting at the Tau infantry wasn't overly successful, but a combination of Bane Wolf, infantry squad and heavy weapon squad blew away the crisis suits round the back. 

The Tau deadpool after turn 2.
The Imperium's 2nd or 3rd finest. 
Advancing like a flock of snails, the guard are inexorable!
The Tau general had the ability to move 20" and still fire so this is what he did, blasting a good few guardsmen in the process. The Leman Russ was still living it's charmed life with a lot of stuff hitting it but little damage being done. The Chimera was taken down to 2 wounds so was little more threat than a toddler with a nerf gun. More guardsmen died, but not in huge numbers.

I suppose at this point some mention should be made of the tactical objective cards. We were using them but not basing many decisions on them. I could have made a play for this objective late in the game I think I did get it, but when the fog of war comes down it's hard to tell.

Your mission, should you accept it, is to keep the filthy alien mitts off the Thumb Of The Emperor. Whilst all the time using extreme prejudice. 

Your mission should you accept it, is to skulk in a building all game and protect some crates. What? Oh you have, well done chaps.
The latter stages of the game involved the Tau general dying, some more guardsmen getting it, the Leman Russ finally taking out the other Tau big gunned thing and the 3 wheeled Chimera start torching the Ethereal and his honour guard. It was at this stage that Aaron conceded. My first game of the new 40K and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Some mention should be made of some quite freakish luck especially with regard to the Leman Russ saving throws, it made more saves then I usually do in an entire game. Makes me want to field many, many more.

Diagonal Shenanigans Against The Hive 

Barely had I caught my breath against the shooty Tau then I had to re deploy against the opposite of Tau - Tyranids. Stuart is a long time 'nid player and was pleased to find the new 40k had made all his favourite units worth taking again. Stuart tried the diagonal deployment zone for shits and giggles and I found that it doesn't suit my tanks in a 4' x 4' table as I had both my Chimera and Leman Russ backed up to the table edge. In fact a lot of my force wasn't overly keen on advancing so there was a healthy dose of distance between my army and the filthy xenos. The only unit even a little bit forward was my ratlings directly opposite the tyrant. The first picture below shows initial deployment, with Stu's Haruspex (or a big shovelly clawed crab thing) being minded by some Termagants, 2 units of Genestealers, a Brood Lord and flying Hive Tyrant.

You can see the Thumb Of The Emperor in the central area of the battlefield. This is undoubtedly what the Tyranids came for.
Sadly, after all the setting up and whatnot, I failed to roll a six for seizing the initiative. A pity, as an extra round of shooting goes a long way against Tyranids. Stuart's forces advanced like Billy-O and much to my annoyance the Stealers on the left got some big advance moves. The Leman Russ got The Horrored by the Hive Tyrant. Very little shooting on the 'nid side. Then it was my turn, some extreme cowardice on the part of the Chimera driver left it stock still by the table edge. The Leman Russ did the same although it had the excuse of having big guns that needed peace and tranquility to fire (damn that Horror ). In fact the only things I moved was the special weapons squad with their 3 flamers, and my favouritest thing of the evening the Bane Wolf. It trundled forward taking 4 wounds off the Haruspex with it's horribly lethal chem cannon. The Imperial Guard shooting was rather effective as it managed to whittle the central stealer unit down to 2 or 3 and damage the other one (getting under 10 so they lost an extra attack. The ratlings plinked off a wound or 2 from the cowering Hive Tyrant. All in all a decent 1st turn.

The Tyranids advanced up and shit got real. The Stealer unit got into combat, to make matters worse it was the fully laden Chimera, a 10 man squad of troopers sat on their hands awaiting the inevitable ripping open of the doors then swift clawwy death. The ratlings were assaulted by the Brood Lord and the Hive Tyrant assaulted one of my infantry squads. Stuart also proved very sneaky by charging both the flamer squad and the Bane wolf soaking up any overwatch shots before the Haruspex mounted it. Overwatch failed to wipe out the Termagants but a lucky krak missile took the big bad Hive Tyrant down to 2 wounds! The combat phase saw all the ratlings get eaten, the Bane Wolf got badly damaged and the special weapons squad did reasonably well for themselves. The stealers pretty much bounced off the Chimera and amazingly the sergeant of the unit battling the Hive Tyrant wounded him!

In my turn orders were given to the autocannons to bring it down! to target the Haruspex and first rank fire second rank fire! was issued to the unit backing away from the Haruspex. My Psyker took a couple of wounds from the Haruspex with a Smite . A veritable fusilade of plasma and missiles and mortars homed in on the the big crab monster getting him down to 2 or 3 wounds. The Leman Russ poured all its shots into the Brood Lord causing a few wounds. Once again, the Genestealers barely scratched the Chimera and the squad inside probably started some nervous whistling. The last 'stealer in the central unit survived despite my best attempts to kill him. My brave guardsmen fighting the tyrant took a bit of a kicking but bravely battled on.

I think this pic was taken at the end of turn 2. Behind the uppermost building is an Astropath, Commander, Priest Commisar and Primaris Psyker. Talk about all your ineffectual eggs in one basket!
The last turn saw some more guardsmen murdered in combat, the stealers failed to do significant damage on the Chimera and both the Brood Lord and Haruspex were taken down. The Termagaunts and single stealers were facing annihilation and the Hive Tyrant was sitting on 1 wound in combat with 2 fearless soldiers. He conceded and the guardsmen in the Chimera got to fight another day.


  • Seizing the initiative is a valid tactic.
  • Rolling 6's for saving throws and overwatch is also a valid tactic.
  • Lucky krak missiles are cool.
  • A wounded Hive tyrant isn't all that!
I suppose being a little less flippant, the new 40K is a streamlined version of it's predecessor that I will take a bit of time to learn properly. If nothing else it has jumped a lot of Imperial Guard models up onto my painting table so that can only be a good thing (for them). Another couple of games may see me start using tactics (!!) but I can't guarantee it. One thing that I'm certain of is the special orders that a commanding officer give are very useful. In fact all the single heroic characters (Commisars, Priests, Psykers) are all very useful. I just have to refine how I deploy and position them. What I am particularly pleased with is how important the lowly footslogger can be in these games.

Thanks for reading.

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