BATTLE TWO – PLANETSTRIKE: DESPERATE ASSAULT
“Report sergeant” ordered Chaplain Barakiel. “Honoured Brother Chaplain,” said Veteran Raphael. “The orks managed to capture outpost omega zeta epsilon during the initial invasion. Imperial Guard intelligence reports that the so-called “Warboss” of the Orks is recovering from his wounds there and they are using it as their main staging post for landing further reinforcements. We can set up a perimeter around the fortress to try and prevent them breaking out whilst we marshal our own forces to drive them from the planet.”
Bifgrab roared with pain as the Mek welded another crude bionic onto his war-ravaged body. His face was now almost completely remade in scavenged metal after taking a mace to the face during the previous engagement. “Nowz the time to kill those stinkin umie boyz. Letz show em who’s the meanest and baddest mob in the whole galaxy. Wif da new boyz down from kroozer we’re ready to smash and krak those jumped up humies who fink they can be green too.” He had seen the Dark green marine skulking closer and closer to his fortification and was ready for revenge. He had a few surprises in mind for this one. Ork shaped surprises.
Our second mission would be another Planetstrike mission with us taking a larger, 2000 point, army this time. Because the Dark Angels had won the previous mission the Orks wouldn’t have the chance to dilapidate one of the Dark Angels fortifications before the battle began [a pretty rubbish bonus – CC Monro].
For this Battle the Dark Angels brought Chaplain Barakiel, Librarian Turmiel (Ezekiel stand-in – despite being grievously ‘wounded’ last time), a second librarian, some Deathwing Knights in a tooled up Land Raider Redeemer, Dreadnought Brother Varsin (with Preferred Enemy Orks as a battle honour after the last battle’s heroics), a Ravenwing Command Squad, a Scout squad and a small Tactical squad, one Devastator squad with missile launchers and multi-meltas and a second Devastator squad with Heavy Bolters, a Nephilim Jetfighter, and two whirlwinds.
The Orks populated their meagre fortifications with a unit of Lootas and two big mobs of 20 Boyz on either side, ready to charge into the guns of the Angels. Accompanying one mob was a screen of grotz and the other had the Deff Dred in it (Hopefully it’ll do more this time than uselessly wander about in a corner of the battlefield… – Bif). Bifgrab and his heavy mob (the MegaNobz) were in their Battlewagon on the left, ready to shoot forward and get stuck in with their claws. As is the style of this game the Orks held quite a lot in reserve, not least because they were allowed to have three units who would be outflankning.) In total there was a large unit of Boyz (outflanking), a unit of bikes, a unit of Burnas (outflanking), a unit of Deffkopters and two Blitza Bommas.
The Orks had some stratagems which meant they had slightly more orbital strikes than normal and they were more accurate (I needed this after last time – Bifur)
Barakiel slowly got to his feet, with the noise inhibitors in his helm still struggling to cope with the recent audio cacophony of the Roks smashing to ground. He could smell the loam from the large furrows caused by the careering Roks and all around him he could see the twisted bodies of brother Space Marines horribly mutilated by the Orks attack. Barakiel knew this meant only one thing, the Orks were about to charge, it was time to make sure that they paid for their pre-emptive attack in their foul blood.
Bifgrab roared with maniacal laughter as he saw the damage wrought across the battlefield. This time the umies wouldn’t stop him. The planet would be his but more importantly he was going to rip the heads of yet more of those stinkin, mewlin, gitz in green armour.
The Orks held a central bunker with the Dark Angels in two bunkers, surrounded by barriers, in the two opposite corners. Most of the Dark Angels began on the board, split between their two bases. The Orks began with little on the board.
So the battle started with Bifur using his Firestorm attacks to great effect. He managed to take 2 hull points from one whirlwind and 1 hull point from the other whirlwind (and made sure that one couldn’t shoot for a turn). They also killed the level two Librarian, two Marines with heavy Bolters, two Sergeants, six normal Marines, and destroyed a bunker. Bifur had first blood before he even took his first turn. (nothing but smiles from my side of the board – Bifur)
The Orks first turn started with a flood of Greenskins piling onto the table, charging towards the Dark Angels and screaming their fowl battle cries. As they ran towards the First Legion they managed to destroy a missile launcher armed Devestator squad with some very un-orky accurate fire. In reply all the remaining Dark Angels turned up on the board and took on the Orks. Dreadnaught Brother Varsin took out 12 boyz. The Land Raider stunned the Ork Dreadnaught with a Las Cannon shot into the side, stalling its advance. The single Whirlwind able to shoot took out two Boyz, and the Melta armed devestators slagged three Burna Boyz, who had snuck onto the board next to them. The Ravenwing Black Knights and Scouts decided discretion was the better part of valour and held their fire (CC Monro forgot to shoot with either of them) (Were they waiting for a better target or simply stunned by the sheer amount of Orks charging towards them? – Bifur)
The second turn started with the Blitza Bomba killing two of the scouts before they’d even had the chance to shoot. The Deffkopters killed a Whirlwind (even after one managed to wound itself with its own bomb in true Orky fashion). Massed fire from Gretchin, Boyz, and Bikes killed two more scouts, forcing the last to run away (Tactically retreat? – Bifur). Another large mob of Boyz took out a Ravenwing Apothecary (because CC Monro decided to forgo jinking, 4+ re-rollable is better than a single 3+…). The second Whirlwind was killed by the gibbering Mek with his giant Shokk Attack Gun. The Orks charged in to close with the stolid green clad warriors. A large pack Boyz charged the Ravenwing, the MegaNobz charged a bunker sheltering Dark Angels and another what was left of the outflanking pack of boyz charged Venerable Brother Varsin. Brother Varsin took down another 3 boyz, leaving a total of 15 smashed and devastated bodies around him, before being cut in half by the power Klaw of the brutal Nob leading the Boyz. Bifgrab and his MegaNobz smashed the bunker to rubble with their power Klaws, destroying the lascannon on its roof and four of the marines inside the bunker. The Ravenwing were wiped out by the big mob of Boyz, sheer weight of numbers beating the elite bike riders as a tide of Orks washed over them and trampled them flat.
After a devastatingly damaging attack from the foul greenskins the Dark Angels moved swiftly to react. Unfortunately it turned out that the Dark Angels had lost the ability to aim effectively and their entire round of shooting only resulted in one dead Ork and one downed DeffKopter. In close combat the Deathwing Knights charged Bifgrab and his crew but only managed to wound one of the Nobz (27 attacks resulted in a single wound!). Two Knights were smeared across the broken asphalt floor in reply. Chaplain Barakiel found himself knocked unconscious after a strong blow from a power klaw and would play no further part in this encounter.
The third turn heralded two more marines killed by the Ork long-ranged attacks and then two more Deathwing Knights being killed for the cost of just one boy. Another round of
poor shooting saw only a single Kopter downed by the Empire’s finest and the remaining Deathwing Knight and Librarian Turmiel (a.k.a. Ezekial) being pulped by Bifgrab and his posse of deranged MegaNobz (With a little help from the remnants of the mob that had just recently dispatched the Angels Dread).
“This is more like it!” Bellowed Bifgrab. This time the Boyz were smashing things up! For once “Da Plan” was basically working. The Orbital shots had worked well this time, most of the Ladz had turned up where they were supposed to and even the unpredictable Shokk Attak Gun wielded by his chief Mek, Brukk, was hitting more than it went wrong. Besides he’d managed to dispatch a good handful of the bigger Humies in the bone coloured armour, their silly maces had glanced of his ladz armour and their poncy shields had been no match for proper weapons (i.e the Power Klaws he and his heavy mob favoured).
Sergeant Nestor peered through the firing slit of the Aegis defence line he and his Devastator squad were sheltering behind. Things had not gone well. Even the Whirlwinds had fallen silent and there were a lot of Orks charging down the road towards them. He directed his brothers to loose of another volley from their multimeltas and they fried a couple more of the Orks. But it wasn’t going to be enough. Those damned flying abominations had dropped explosives on them, they’d not seen the Orks with the flame weapons creep up on them before they’d lost brothers to the choking flames and whats more he was sure he could hear bike engines. Emperor damn them! How he hated Ork bikes! “Stand ready brothers!” he shouted over the din of battle to his Squad “The Emperor knows where outnumbered but let’s see if we can’t outgun these foul green skins! Aim true and shoot well!” With that he stood up and levelled his bolter. Yes, bikes, coming in from the left…
A short fourth turn saw three Devastator Marines on the left flank killed from massed Ork fire. After that the last Devastator on the right flank was killed by a Mega Nob. The Devestator squad still remaining on the left flank was charged by seven careening bikes and a mob of Boyz who brutally dispatched them, taking only one of the Orks with them. The stalwart Land Raider was punched from behind, and blown up, by the Deff Dred (Clearly it was annoyed by the earlier Las Cannon shot and it stuck its claws into the engine and petrol tank and twisted… – Bifur). And with that it was over. All that remained was the Dark Angels flyer in reserve and therefore the Dark Angels were tabled.
Ouch. So that was brutal. CC Monro here. That was one of the most epically one sided games I’ve ever played (which to be fair isn’t actually that many games but still…). It all went wrong right from the start. Well not right from the start as I’m not sure my army list was that bad but apart from that, ouch. The firstorms were devastating – S10, AP2. So everything under a template was insta-killed on a 2 (they were in the last game, I just didn’t do any real damage with them… – Bifur). And so my brave (cough, lucky and cowardly) opponent Bifur, who couldn’t roll a scatter dice to save his life in our first game (which I won 20-0, did I mention that?) seemingly couldn’t roll anything but a hit (The re rolls helped with that – Bifur). Losing quite so much of my army right at the beginning didn’t help. But nor did forgetting to shoot with both my scouts and my Ravenwing Knights, or bringing my Ravenwing Knights on in a place where they could be charged so soon, or failing to take out the Battlewagon before the git that is Bifgrab and his bunch of annoying MegaNobz (never has a name been so accurate) could get into combat help either. By the end of the second turn, which saw some excellent tactics and rolling by Bifur and some terrible decision making and rolling by me (my shooting was appalling all game), it was clear that it would be a good result if the Dark Angels could hold on for the whole game. And they couldn’t. I’ve never been tabled before in the small number of games I’ve played and ouch. It really doesn’t feel good.
‘Ello people, Bifur here. Looks like my plan of “More Boyz, less Toyz” worked just fine! Prime example: The unit of outflanking Boyz, they came on and were decimated by some excellent work from the Dark Angels Dreadnought. But he couldn’t kill all of them, only a few of them actually reached him but one of those was the Power Klaw armed Nob; which then smashed him to tiny pieces. Another example was the Boyz who charged the Bikers: Again, not all of them made it but when they did three bikers were hit with over 40 attacks. Power armour isn’t going to stop that… One thing stood out from this game for me. Deathwing Knights are beautiful, overpriced, rubbish. I love the models and have a squad for my Dark Angels but their maces are only AP3. MegaNobz have a 2+ save. I had a good game though, some lucky rolls added to having lots of Boyz gave me a convincing win. Hopefully CC isn’t to disheartened by his defeat and puts my Greenskins in their place in the next instalment of this campaign.
Barakiel awoke in what looked like a backworld med-bay. Were things really so bad that he was being treated next to ‘normal’ humans? Barakiel could see the Apothecary hunched over his legs working on something and was dimly aware of the feeling on pain inhibiting drugs coursing through his genetically perfect system. The last he remembered was the shouted warning as one of the giant armoured vermin had appeared behind him but after that his system must have shut itself down to preserve vital organ and brain functions. “How bad was it?” he growled at the Apothecary. “14 brothers never to fight again, dozens more injured, the tech-priests are trying to recover the armour, and most importantly Brother Varsin, at this very moment” the Apothecary answered, his attention still transfixed on his work on Barakiel’s leg. If he was concerned that his patient had just awoken mid-surgery he wasn’t showing it. There would be much penance to pay for the slaughter of his men Barakiel thought, but worse than that Barakiel knew that some of it was his fault. For he had underestimated his foe after winning such a sure victory in their first skirmish. However, the time for repentance would come, for the moment he knew that he could turn this tactical defeat into a strategic victory. Granted they hadn’t been able to keep the Ork menace from the streets of the hives of Prol IX but he would turn this to his advantage. The PDF was dug in and ready to support his men, the scant Astra Militarum resources on the planet were ready to lend their aid, and most importantly of all there were still Space Marines, the Emperor’s chosen troops, willing to fight for the planet. He would make the Ork scum regret ever setting foot on this plant.
Bifgrab let his head back and roared with laughter. The nervous looking Gretchin scurrying around him, hoping for cast off squig meat or teef joined in the laughter sycophantically. All around Bifgrab he could see the smouldering craters where his Roks had torn up the hate hummies defences and where crushed armoured remains could be seen. “Come on boyz, lets get in dat stinkin’ hummie city and kill us sum soft pink hummies. WAAAGHHHH”. The warband surged forward, closing on the outer limits of the Hives lower levels. Bifgrab knew he was being premature. Before he reached the spire of the Hive, where all the best scrap was bound to be, there was a huge tract of suburbs and fortifications to get through. Bifgrab didn’t care, this was going to be fun.