Saturday, November 26, 2011

Tigger Visits the Big Apple: 19 Nov 2011 (Part I)

Opponent: Kenton’s Kurindans (Tyranids proxy).  In the past, Kenton’s Kurindans have been filled with many more ‘fluffy’ units, such as Genestealers, Ravagers, Hive Tyrants, Carnifexes, etc.  However, today he was fielding a stripped-down ‘nasty’ Tyranid list, heavy on Tervigons and Termagants and lean-and-mean on ranged shooting and support units (like Warriors).  This is without a doubt one of the better all-comer Nid lists, particularly when playing objective missions.

Kurindans Army (1500 pts Tyranid proxy list)
  • HQ: Prime with Rending
  • Elite: 2x3 Hive Guard
  • Elite: 2x Venomthropes
  • HQ/Troop: 3x Tervigon with Catalyst
  • Troop: 2x10 Termagants
  • Troop: x4,x5 Warriors with Deathspitters and 1x Venom Cannon

Mission: Seize Ground/Pitched Battle.  In this match-up, we randomly generated three objectives, with me placing two, and Kenton placing one.

Terrain: Ruined cityscape with wide avenues, plenty of overgrowth and low ruins in the middle and right thirds of the table, and several sizable multi-story buildings blocking LOS on the left third of the table.

(grey areas represent low rubble.  The three red dots are the three objectives)

What Happened?

Kenton chose to let me deploy (and begin) the game first, and decline to seize the initiative, deploying all his units in reserve.  Accordingly, I dropped each of my Rhinos on the two closest objectives, flanking (and protecting) the leftmost one between the hulls of an empty Immolator, and the Exorcist.  I then pushed the three Immolators with Dominion squads (including my Uriah proxy) forward toward the far board edge, just outside potential Tyranid assault range, and popped smoke.  I now held two of the three objectives, and although I didn’t want to lose units trying to hold the third, I could easily move a vehicle or two over to contest it if I needed to.

In the bottom of the 2nd turn, Kenton reserved on all the Tervigons, Venomthropes, and Hive Guard, and the small brood of Warriors.  He placed everything out of LOS; the Tervigons and Hive Guard to the far left (his right flank), behind the large ruined buildings, and the Warriors behind the small building in the middle of his deployment zone.  The Warriors quickly vanished as they were swarmed by Dominions, who wiped them out – however, I was a bit too aggressive with one Immolator, and it immobilized itself trying to plow through the side of the building to get to the Warrior brood behind.  I also managed to snipe an overly aggressive Hive Guard with my Exorcist, but did little else, having no LOS to most of the Tyranids from my stationary (non-Dominion) units.

Dominions swarming the (now-vaporized)
Warrior brood behind the building

Kenton reserved on his second unit of Warriors, placing them behind his Tervigons, and also reserved on a unit of Termagants, which he sent toward my Dominions – but was blocked from assaulting them by the bulk of their transports.  He then puked out another three broods of Termagants (a total of 24 bases), sending the largest Tervigon-spawned brood to sit on the objective in the middle of the large building – the only objective I hadn’t tried to hold.  The Tervigons hit themselves with Catalyst, then moved up in cover from the Venomthropes, with the bulk of the Tervigons hiding the Venomthropes themselves.  The Hive Guard decided to ignore the many vehicles, instead sniping a unit of Dominions, but managed to kill only a few.

The Tervigons advance in the shadow
of the ruined buildings.

The Termagants hanging on my Immolators were quickly tank-shocked off the table (they were far too far away from a Synapse creature), and I tried futilely sniping at Hive Guard and Tervigons before realizing that, in an objective mission, I really needed to be taking out Termagants.  Proving the point, Kenton’s Tervigons quickly puked out another 30 Termagants, while a Prime (and 10 Termagants) strolled onto the table and ate one of my three units of Dominions.  The Hive Guard switched to shooting vehicles (not bodies in power armor), and blew up an Immolator – then decided to assault the unit that fell out, rather than allow them to rampage in the Tyranid backfield with their meltaguns.

Dominions make Tyranid Prime angry!

Running out of Dominions and Immolators, I was having to rely on my backfield of Battle Sisters and Retributors, and now that the hordes of reserving and newly-spawned Termagants was coming into view, I disembarked my units of Battle Sisters and opened fire, blasting the Prime-led Termagants in the center into oblivion, and blasting another dozen Termagants to shreds on the left as they ran, pell-mell, toward my position.

This is what is left *after* you shoot
a dozen of the little suckers.  And then
the big guys in back just spawn more!

With just one Tervigon left that could spawn Termagants, Kenton spit out a final brood of 6 Termagants, meaning that he had “only” six broods (and forty-six bases) for the remainder of the game.  He continued to run them madly at my lines, backed by Catalysted Tervigons and the portable Venomthrope cover, ending up just inches away from the nearest Sororitas unit, an empty Immolator.

Meantime, one of his Hive Guard units was slowly getting whittled down by Uriah and his five accompanying Dominions, and my final surviving Dominion unit (and their Immolator) was contesting the objective the Tyranids were trying to hold.

Turns out that Hive Guard just aren’t all
that good in close combat.  Although with T6,
it’s also hard for Sisters to hurt ‘em.

So, after five turns, we rolled to end the game... and it did.  Had the game ended at this point, it would have been two objectives in my favor, and a third contested – a Sisters of Battle victory.  But given that Kenton really hadn’t done much yet (largely as a result of having started the game in Reserve), we just decided to ignore the dice roll and see what would happen subsequently.

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