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Game Four: Rearguard

The Cult rearguard attempts to slow oncoming Black Dragon forces while the main force prepares a counter-attack!

Scenario

This game was a simple 1000 point pitched battle with no special rules or objectives. The standard game-length rules determined the number of rounds. Victory Points would determine the final outcome.
Justin used Squad Long and Squad Drakkar (armed exactly the way they have been in previous battles) along with Chaplain Tristan, an annihilator tank, a whirlwind tank, a squad of Terminators, and Inquisitor Locke (with her usual wargear from games past).
My force consisted of a Lady Commissar (with power sword, bolt pistol, and refractor field), an infantry platoon (command squad had vox caster, medic, banner, and sniper, one squad had a grenade launcher, vox caster, autocannon team, and a commissar with power sword, the other squad had a plasma gun, vox caster, heavy bolter team, and a commissar with power sword), a squad of veterans (grenadiers with vox caster, plasma gun, grenade launcher, and power sword for the sergeant), Mayhem (Leman Russ Executioner Tank with lascannon and plasma cannon sponsons) and Menace (Leman Russ Battle Tank with lascannon and heavy bolter sponsons).

Round One

Things start to heat up for Sgt Dagni!
The Black Dragons won the initiative. Squad Drakkar charged across the field while the rest of the army dug in. The whirlwind tank fired a barrage of missiles at the cult forces but missed by a mile. The predator annihilator and Squad Long both unloaded on the Cult tank designated Menace, but failed to penetrate the hull. On my turn, Sgt. Ohara and her unit unleashed a storm of small arms fire against Squad Drakkar, but only manage to drop Inquisitor Locke with a plasma shot. Menace fired both its lascannon and battle cannon at the whirlwind but failed to hit with either. Sgt. Falcone took shots at Squad Long but failed to hit anyone. Executioner Tank-Mayhem let out a torrent of hot plasma against Squad Long and killed all but three marines.

Round Two

Squad Ryu appears out of thin air.
Terminator Squad Ryu (led by Sgt. Galahad) teleported in out of nowhere and secured a stronghold deep in Cult territory. The whirlwind unleashed a vicious salvo that killed all but three of Falconeís troops. Squad Longís missile launcher took a shot at Mayhem but missed. Squad Drakkarís heavy bolter gunned down three more of Oharaís troops. The Terminators peppered Menace with ineffectual bullets while across the table, the annihilator stunned the crew of Mayhem. On my turn, the Cultís veterans, Icharís Finest, arrived on the field to bolster the command squad. Oharaís unit finally killed the heavy bolter in the remains of Squad Drakkar. Falcone and the command squad fired in vain at the advancing Terminators. Menace unloaded on the whirlwind again but could not damage the tank.

Round Three

Incoming! Hit the dirt!
The whirlwind attempted to drop heavy ordnance on the Cultís command squad. The shot misses the intended target, but scatters into Icharís Finest and Menace! The tank was unscathed, but five veterans were slain. The remains of Drakkar surged forward while the annihilator immobilized and stunned the crew of Mayhem, effectively crippling the once mighty Executioner. Squad Long and Squad Ryu focused their efforts on Mayhem. Squad Long failed to do anything, but the Terminators destroyed the tankís battle cannon and made the crew shaken. Both of the Cultís tanks were effectively useless at the point. Lt Herbert, the junior officer of the command squad, used the First Rank FIRE! Second Rank FIRE! Order successfully on Icharís Finest. Unfortunately, for all the extra firepower, the veterans were just out of range. To add insult to injury, the veteran plasma gunnerís weapon overheated and killed him. Only Lady Commissar Pechís aura of discipline kept the decimated veterans from breaking and running. Falconeís men focused their fire on the unstoppable Terminators with the usual disappointing results.

Round Four

KA-BOOM!
Dagni made a desperate rush towards Ohara and her men. The whirlwind spewed forth another terrifying barrage of missiles and killed most of the command squad. Only Lady Commissar Pech and the junior officer survive. The annihilator wrecked Mayhem with a burst of lascannons. The column of fire from the destroyed Cult tank could be seen for miles. The Terminators mowed down the surviving veterans of Icharís finest. On my turn, Ohara and her men finally managed to drop the rushing Sgt Dagni. Falconeís men fired upon the Terminators to no avail. Luckily, Menace was able to vaporize a Terminator with a well-timed lascannon shot.

Round Five

Lady Commissar Pech considers her limited options.
The whirlwind unleashed a flurry of missiles at Oharaís unit, but they were out of range. The annihilator blasted Menace again, leaving the tankís crew shaken and unable to fire. Squad Long fired a superfrag missile into Oharaís unit and killed two in the resulting explosion. The Terminators fired wildly into Falconeís unit, but only kill one soldier. Ohara moved her unit into cover and used the ruined building to block line of sight. The remnants of Falconeís unit and the command squad failed to injure the Terminators. Even Lady Commissar Pechís bolt pistol did nothing.

Round Six

A last ditch effort by Falcone.
The Terminators strode forward towards Falcone. The whirlwind launched a barrage of long-ranged death at the Lady Commissar, but missed. The annihilator damaged Menace, again preventing it from firing again. The missile launcher in Squad Long fired a krak missile at the pinned tank, but could not breach the hull. The Terminators then opened fire on Lady Commissar Pech and she fell in a crimson burst. Falcone and his commissar fired their pistols at the Terminators before they launched a brave (and extremely stupid) assault. Being superhuman, Sgt Galahad was able to cut down most of his attackers before they could strike. Falconeís commissar was the only one that survived Galahadís onslaught. However, he could not manage to wound any of the Terminators and was subsequently squished by their powerfists. On the other side of the battlefield, Ohara and her unit dug in and waited for the fight to come to them. Chalk up another victory for the Black Dragons.

Reflections

Oh yeah, this was another game that hurt. A lot. Looking back, I was relying too much on my tanks. While Leman Russes are excellent tanks, they canít carry a whole game alone. Also, they were out in the open. All the annihilatorís lascannons made it easy for Justin to prevent my tanks from shooting. This left very little in my army able to dent marines, let alone their tanks and elites. I should have taken more troops with special weapons (melta guns might have been useful against those damned Terminators). Maybe I should have also swapped out the veterans for storm troopers. Or had scout sentinels outflank and take out either the whirlwind or annihilator. Lesson learned.
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