Game 3: Daemons Vs Mech Guard

For Game 3, I played my nemesis, the very evil Evil Homer, who of course played his Mech Guard.  I'd say it's a tossup between this army and Little Barrera's Space Wolves for which is the most feared at our FLGS; in that, we're pretty much like other areas.

I don't know where my army fits into the bunch - you'd have to ask someone else.

But I digress.  The mission was, again, modified from the Battle Missions book, and it only took one look to realize I wanted to be the Defender, not the Attacker.  Take a look at the picture - and remember, as always, you can click on the picture to zoom in.

So the Attacker is forced to play aggressively and get into the enemy deployment zone.  Had I rolled lower than Evil Homer, he would of course chosen to defend; while it would have been difficult to shift all those vehicles, I've done it in the past.  My army is suited to it.  His, however, is not.  This was obviously a huge uphill battle for him, and he practically had to table me to get a minor win, much less a major.  I was pretty happy with this turn of events, but just as obviously he wasn't.

Let's take a moment to talk about that.  I won't bore you, but there were some good and bad things about these scenarios.  My FLGS has almost always used missions modified from the main rulebook, so armies pretty much knew what to expect.  These last two months first the Master Manipulator (every store needs one) and then Little Barrera used these modified missions, really shaking things up.  I think that's a positive thing.  It more represents the type of missions played at events like Hard Boyz, BoLSCon, and Adepticon, where there is almost certainly multiple missions to achieve in order to claim a major victory... and you can pretty much guess you'll need a string of majors to win the day.  It forces people to consider elements of their army they may not normally pay attention to, and perhaps top-heavy gunline armies may be reworked as a result, hopefully to the enjoyment of everyone concerned.  In short: it's a form of comp built in.  The problem with this, other than those who hate the idea of comp at all, is that it leads to mismatches such as this.

Game 2 worked out well for me, and I saw Birdsong posted a comment; I meant to ask him, but haven't yet, if he believes he would have been better served by not using the full reserve option in that particular game, with that particular mission.  I think the match would have been more equitable.  In this game it wasn't a choice that resulted in a mismatch: I won a dice roll and the game became lopsided as a result.  Now, that in no way invalidates my win, or my ultimate first place position on the day, because lucky draws in certain scenarios is a factor in every tournament anyone plays in.  Evil Homer wasn't happy, but he didn't complain or throw a fit - that's just the nature of a tournament, and if you can't deal with it you should consider another venue for your hobby.  I certainly didn't blame God and everyone when Birdsong pulled the Sanctuary Screwjob a month ago; in fact, I love that game!  Now I'd best move on, since I'm certain I've bored most of you...
The attacker goes first - that's Homer! - so of course I'm off the table.  He moves on along the entire long edge, concentrating his artillery on the opposite end of the table in the picture you see here.  Basically, the objectives were in the quadrant on my right flank, so of course that's were he focused his power. 
Here's my drop and run moves...
...and here's the table after the top of 2.  His shooting was pretty brutal.  I lost two units of Fiends, some Khornedogs, and had wounds dumped on my Great Unclean One.  I'll admit, I was blown away by how effective his shooting was.  If that doesn't seem impressive, consider that each Fiend has two wounds and I had a cover save for practically every shot.  That's a lot of hitting, wounding, and failing... and I'm not known as a player with bad luck failing saves - these failed the old fashion way.  By overloading me with dice to roll.

My army has 4 elements, which is my personal idea of proper army composition, but I won't go into that much today - hell, maybe ever!  Everyone has ideas about what's best; who's to say I have anything both original and useful to say on that score?  Anyway, I have Placeholders, Disruptors, Aggressors, and Gunners in this and every other army I build, though the proportions change... and this obsession with these elements sometimes results in odd choices in my armies, such as the lone Vyper in my old Hybrid Eldar army (I lacked Disruptors). 

Blah!  Moving on, what made me nervous is Evil Homer blasted most of my Aggressors off the board.  I still had one unit of Fiends and a unit of Khornedogs... not to mention the Great Unclean One, who could fulfill that role in a pinch.  His turn was great, and I know he was well satisfied with it...
...and then I went.  I've rarely had a more perfect turn than this one.  I'm very aware of what my army is capable of, but so is Homer.  He's my nemesis, after all.  It's fair to say we were both shocked.  Two Daemon Princes and a unit of Plaguebearers came in from reserve.  On my left flank, my Herald got in position to attack Homer's artillery, making sure I could overlap the Breath template and pick up at least two tanks.  The two Princes dropped on the flank as well, taking up the slack left by the destruction of the two units of Fiends.  One Prince blasted a Chimera and the other knocked a Vendetta out of the sky.  My remaining unit of Fiends had a juicy target to charge!  On the right flank, my Khornedogs were going to have no problem reaching the Vendetta, but let's not pretend they wouldn't have had problems doing something to it... after all, what does the dog do when it catches a car?  My other Herald solved that problem by moving into position, Bolting the Vendetta and immobilizing it.  Consequently, my Khornedogs were able to target the bird AND the Chimera sitting next to it, which I would have been able to do had the bird still been in the air.  The difference between charging the base and charging the downed Vendetta along its entire span is huge, and it allowed me to space my models enough to pick up a treat.  The Great Unclean One used Breath on his targets but got a bit unlucky and failed to roll high enough to charge, and the Khornedogs failed to hurt the downed Vendetta, but Karnak the Khornedog of Vengeance lifted his leg on the Chimera, blowing it up and spilling shocked Guardsman all over the board!  Good stuff!  In the subsequent turn, Homer's, the remaining Khornedogs did blow up the Vendetta, spilling Guardsman out the back in a nice pile for my Herald.
Here's a shot of the right flank during Homer's shooting phase.  He failed to kill the Great Unclean One, who subsequently ravaged the Autocannon squads in the corner, but he did kill all but a few of the Khornedogs.  The remaining, pissed off at the affront, took their close combat attacks in Evil Homer's turn - like they're allowed to as long as the vehicle hasn't moved - and blew the Vendetta up.  Notice the Herald?  He came along and blew his halitosis all over them!
I think this is the 3rd turn.  Evil Homer later said that my brutal Turn 2 caused him to realize he was playing for a draw.  He sped his Vendetta up and took what troops he had left to go after the Herald on my right flank.  I believe his plan was to sneak them along the edge, going for the Horrors whose job it was to control the corner objective.  Ultimately, it didn't happen, but Homer's a gamer - he'll fight to the end.  Moving on, my last Daemon Prince dropped and destroyed the Vendetta with Bolt and Breath, disgorging the troops below it.  As you can see, it's still on its base, but that's because we didn't want it balanced on the terrain; we understood it was wreaked.  Meanwhile, on the left flank, my remaining Fiends and Herald, as well as the Daemon Princes up there - which you can't see in the pic - continued to lay waste.  It was a fight, though, as Homer marshaled his forces for the counter-attack. 
Here's a picture taken from the short edge, right flank.  The Great Unclean One killed his opponents but was finally put down by the remaining Autocannons and the PCS in the Chimera.  The Vets with Melta, who'd previously been dumped out of their Chimera by Karnak, went after the Herald.  Karnak, meanwhile, had been forced to go to ground.  It didn't help, and he was sent yapping back to the Warp.
Same angle, next turn.  The Daemon Prince in the middle moved up to attack the remaining Guardsman with Breath.  The Herald closest to the camera was targeted by the Vets, who are hoping to kill the Herald and move on to the Horrors.  In the middle, the Psychic Battle Squad (btw, they'd killed half their squad by rolling box cars on the first turn of the game - fun!) and a Vet Squad, both in Chimeras, are making a play for the center objective. 
Here's the last picture.  When Turn 5 rolled around, we had 18 minutes left and chose not to play on.  I had a minor win and there was no way Evil Homer could improve his position.  It's possible I could have, but it wasn't likely enough for me to care.  Certainly Homer would have given me the last turn had I wanted it, but weighing that against relaxing 15 extra minutes between rounds and I think I made the right decision.

This last picture is the board with my models removed.  Keep in mind, the Vendetta in the middle is wrecked, but the point is my opponent had plenty of stuff on the table, but his artillery was trapped in one corner and his PCS in Chimera (out of the shot) was in the other, along with the remaining Autocannons.  Ultimately, they couldn't affect the last turn, other than maybe killing off a model or two. 

I find that interesting.  I handed the Guard a butt-kicking, yet there's still a lot of plastic on the game board.  Simply put, it's the type of army that's hard to put away completely, and had I been in the unenviable position to play the Attacker, I'm wondering if I could have shifted so much off the objectives.

Ah well!  That's how it rolls, and keep in mind I had quite a bit as well.  We went through 4 turns and it was  a random game length mission; a lot could have happened.



Chumbalaya said...

Shaking things up with missions is one thing, but damn, that was another really goofy one :P

Thomas aka Goatboy said...

Yeah I don't like the battle missions either. So one side has to have something crappy to them, why is this fun again?

Congrats on winning. Daemons can do a lot at times, but the random nature can bone them so bad. You have games where you crush people but then you have games where vehicles drive all around you as you whine about only having one daemonic vehicle. It is a crap shoot at times.

Fiends are the key to Daemon victory for sure. If you can't deal with them enough the first turn they drop, watch out as they get all their manish boobs all over your armies face.

DRWIZ223 said...

Yep the missions were strange. What Brent did not say was in the 7 games played there was one draw and the deffender won the rest so that tells you this mission was crap.

Gauthic said...

Yeah that was really the only unbalanced mission of the tournament. The tournament administrator (Little Barrera) did a good job adjusting them all for overall good balance, but this one wasn't adjusted enough.

We, the players, gave him good feedback about our thoughts of that particular scenario so that he may adjust it later.

The other three missions worked just fine (one of which was just changing the die roll for who goes first to 1-3 attacker, 4-6 defender).

I was impressed overall (even with the slightly unbalanced one - my only loss that tournament )

Big Whit said...

I talked it over with Barrera and I still think that the 6 square mission heavily favored the attacker. When the defender is forced to put everything on the table spread out and the attacker comes in on turn one from any number of angles to blow your army to hell or assault it, then it really is not a fair game. I do think there are some balanced missions in the book that are good for tournaments, but you just need to look carefully to see if it is going to be one sided.

Evil Homer said...

I've been on the border about the Battle Missions book. I think some of the core concepts, like playing for objectives in 6 squares, or changing deployment locations are interesting but am very unhappy with the attacker/defender issue, don't care for the requirement in many of them that the Defender must deploy. There are some things I just don't like.

Prior to this we were playing the scenario variations that GW canada put out 2 years ago, primary-secondary scenarios with more or less standard deployments.

I prefer them much more.

Anonymous said...

Just in case you missed the comment on Galaxy forum, I think you can fleet the corndogs bro.


Brent said...

Really? I had no idea...

...wait - it's because they're beasts...

...totally didn't think of that!

Evil Homer; I tend to agree. Unless we can balance these scenarios somehow. This one obviously wasn't.


Anonymous said...

That Birdsong is one sexy beast!

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