1500 Orks Vs Tau Empire: Sweep and ClearThe Manta rocked gently with the force of ork anti-aircraft shells, bursting ineffectually in the lower atmosphere. The Air Caste pilots did not change course, but they did advance their time-on-target by sixteen seconds. The crude ork ordnance wouldn't do much damage unless they got lucky. The Air Caste pilot didn't want to give the orks too many more opportunities to try their luck.
Shas'o Bork'an Molyen's HUD automatically adjusted its approach vector to account for the increased speed. Everything was green, the holographic rings around his team's drop path intact and unbroken. He opened his comms to the five other XV8 Crisis pilots in the hold, all of them currently running down their pre-engagement checklists. "We have multiple contacts in sector CC-080. Enemy short-range plasma artillery moved into short range under cover of gravity rocket bombardment - this seems a significant push, and the intercepting hunter cadre is taking heavy losses. Their Shas'vre has drawn the enemy out of hiding, taking casualties to make better targets for us."
O'Molyen spun his burst cannons, priming the pulse ammunition and bringing interlocking targeting reticles up on his HUD.
"Let us be certain not to miss."
His team - veteran pilots all, whom O'Molyen had bled with on a dozen different battlefields - spoke as one: "TAU'VA, SE'HEN CHE LEL."
For the Greater Good, We ride the lightning.
The drop lights were green. The bay doors shot open. Beneath them was the broad, yellow expanse of the planet's outer provinces, the sky in bloom with black Ork flak bombs.
O'Molyen gave the order to deploy, and five crisis suits toggled their accelerators to maximum. They were off, into the fray, their shield drones flying close formation, blocking the flak ordnance as they descended into hell.
For the Greater Good.
Got in another game with the Tau the other night. My opponent was Roboknee's orks. We played using GT 2021 rules, since I don't have the newer battlezones yet. Here are the lists:Bork'an BattalionHQ
Commander w/Cyclic Ion Blaster, 2x Burst Cannons (Overdrive Power Systems), Warlord: Seeker of Perfection
Cadre Fireblade w/ Promising Pupil: Through Unity, DevastationTroops
Strike Team w/Pulse Rifles
Strike Team w/Pulse Rifles
Strike Team w/Pulse RiflesElites
5 Crisis Bodyguards w/Flamer, Plasma Rifle, Burst Cannon; Shas'vre w/Thermoneutronic Projector, 2x Shield DronesFast Attack
Piranha w/Fusion Blaster
Piranha w/Fusion Blaster
2 TetrasHeavy Support
Hammerhead w/Railgun, Burst Cannons
Hammerhead w/Railgun, Burst CannonsTransports
DevilfishBad Moons BattalionHQ
Warboss w/Mega Armor (Da Krushin Armor), 'Uge Choppa, Big Shoota, Warlord: Might is Right
Big Mek w/Mega Armor, Extra Kustom Kustom Mega Blasta, Power Klaw, Super Cybork Body, Big Boss: Ard as NailsTroops
10 Slugga Boyz (Nob w/Klaw)
10 Shoota Boyz (Nob w/Klaw)
12 TankbustasFast Attack
3 DeffkoptasHeavy Support
Kustom Mega Kannon
Kustom Mega Kannon
10 Lootas w/2x SpannersTransport
TrukkTo Be Continued...
Post Merge: August 20, 2022, 02:36:50 PM
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Mission, Terrain, and Deployment
The terrain in this mission was a kind of rural outpost thing with a road running diagonally down the center of the board and a big hill on either side. In the southwest was a Tau outpost. with a comms tower, some habitat domes, and a few security pylons (all for show, pretty much). In the northeast, the hill was wooded with a bunker at the center and a number of rocky outcroppings and ridges littering the battlefield.
The mission was Sweep and Clear, so table quarter deployments and objectives that remain claimed so long as no one else claims them. Our secondary objectives were as follows:Orks:
Da Biggest and Da Best (Warboss punches stuff), Green Tide (boyz in quarters), and Get the Good Bitz (action performed on objectives)Tau:
Decisive Action (points at the end of the turn if controlling majority of objectives), Bring It Down (kill vehicles), and Engage on All Fronts (claim table quarters)
I was surprised at a few of my opponent's choices, here, but I recognize he wanted to just take all the faction specific ones. I figured he would have trouble scoring Green Tide (not enough guys) and Get the Good Bitz (since actions are so damned hard to pull off consistently).
Deployment saw my opponent choose Attacker and get the NE corner. He held his Koptas in reserve and stuck the Tankbustas + their ride in the Tellyporta. Most of the rest of his force clustered on the wooded hill, with the Lootas guarding the east flank, the shoota boyz on the west flank, and everybody else in the middle, including the Warboss + Meganobz in a Trukk. My deployment placed my Hammerheads and Tetras way back behind the big hill, which hopefully would limit LOS/range. The Piranha would go on my north/west flank and the Devilfish (full of Strike Teams + Cadre Fireblade) used Armored Aggression to zoom out along my east flank to come really close to the SE objective. In the center, I placed my foot Strike Team as close to a barrier as I could manage and hoped they wouldn't get too much attention on the first turn. The Crisis Bodyguards and the Commander would Manta Strike, of course.
My battle tactic for the game would be Mont'ka, because I had no intention or expectation of this battle going past Turn 3.
Deployment:Tau deployment ZoneOrk Deployment ZoneTurn 1
The orks won the first turn roll-off. My opponent declares a WAAAAGH on turn 1, giving everybody invulnerable saves (this is my first time encountering this rule - this is a good rule and the orks deserve it). The Shoota boyz move west to hide behind some large rocks and a ridge in the north. The Trukk w/the Warboss and his buddies drives straight forward and throws a lot of bullets at my foot strike team, killing about 6 of them. The westernmost Kustom Mega Kannon is wheeled around a big rock to get LOS on one of my Hammerheads and shoots a deadly volley of 5 shots, all of which hit and 3 wound, doing a total of 15 damage. Ouch! One Hammerhead down.
In the south, I realize my aggressive movements with my Devilfish were perhaps unwise when the Slugga Boyz got off a first turn charge, which damaged one of the transports. The Big Mek and the other Kustom Mega Kannon blasted my other Devilfish, which also stayed afloat with just
enough wounds to avoid dropping a damage category.
Finally, the Grots + Runtherd (oops! Forgot to list the Runtherd above - will edit shortly) moved to the central objective and the Grots performed the Get the Good Bitz action to scrounge about for leftover bottle caps and what-not.
In the morale phase, I paid my CP to keep the foot strike team around.
Top of Turn 1
(I forgot to take pictures this round - my apologies)
In the bottom of Turn 2, I made my counter-attack. In the south, both Strike Teams + Fireblade disembarked from the Devilfish and I used Designated Tasking to pop the two drones off the assaulted Devilfish and let them zoom off to cause trouble elsewhere. The assaulted Devilfish fell back from combat, moving north to get in the way of additional ork assaults, while the second Devilfish moved toward the Lootas in the west. One Strike Team plus a couple random shots from elsewhere blew away the slugga boyz while the other strike team + one devilfish gunned down 8 of 10 Lootas.
The remaining foot strike team wiped the Grots (well, they killed most and morale took care of the rest), but their action completed at the end of the previous turn, so my opponent still scored his points. In the west, the Tetras marked both the Trukk full of mega armor and the Kustom Mega Kannon that had killed my hammerhead. The remaining
Hammerhead's Railgun, using targeting data from the markerlights, reduced the Trukk to an instant scrapyard and the ensuing explosion killed 3 (!) meganobz (really amphetamine parrotty roll there for my opponent). The Hammerhead's burst cannons, meanwhile, did absolutely nothing to anything.
This left two meganobz, the Warboss, and the Kustom Mega Kannon for the Piranha and the Tetra pulse rifles to deal with. Piranha #1 incinerates the Kustom Mega Kannon with a single shot (thank you markerlights!) and its drones strip a wound off a Meganob. The second Piranha incinerates that Meganob with the fusion blaster and the drones strip another single wound off the other
meganob. Finally, the Piranha used their pulse rifles to kill that final Meganob with a couple well-placed salvos. When the smoke cleared, apart from the Warboss and the runtherd, the whole Ork center was essentially obliterated.
Bottom of Turn 1Strike teams...uhhh...STRI KE!Coming soon: Warboss Vs Piranha!The Spannerz are checking their health insurance policy to see if it covers pulse rifle woundsCurrent ScoreOrks
: 6 (Good Bitz + Green Tide Secondaries)Tau
: 9 (Bring it Down + Engage on All Fronts + Decisive Action Secondaries) Turn 2
At the top of Turn 2, the orks hold 1 objective (the Runtherd was just
out of range to claim the center). The Warboss moves towards the Piranha, the Runtherd claims the center for certain, and he forgets to move his shoota boyz in the north (he only remembered about halfway through the shooting phase, otherwise I would have let him move after the fact). The Warboss charged both piranhas, killing one and damaging the other severely (note, the map makes it look like the Warboss was contesting the NW objective--he wasn't actually that close).
Reserves are the main show here, though. One group of Koptas lands near board center and the other lands in the SE quadrant and each of them kills about 7-8 firewarriors in each strike team (I was surprised to see rokkit launchers aimed at infantry, but I can't deny it was a solid strategy, given all those shots). The southern koptas then charged one strike team and killed them and consolidated into the Cadre Fireblade.
The tankbustas teleport into my backfield in their trukk, right in the SW corner. They aim their deadly rokkits at my Hammerhead and let fly...and totally
choke. I think I took only 3 wounds from that attack - real tough break. Then, calamity: the trukk uses some stratagem to make a really long charge. I figure what the hell and try for overwatch - all I need to do is connect with that railgun and the trukk is toast, and I get a re-roll! So, I roll: 6. A 6, even without a re-roll.
The Trukk can't decide if it should burst into flames, fall apart, or disintegrate, so it does all three at once. Two tankbustas are killed in the wreck, but the other 10 are wildly exposed to fire next turn. Another tough break for the orks.
On the brighter side of things, the Big Mek and the Lootas and the remaining Mek Gun kill my two devilfish, so it's not all bad. I have to spend more CPs to keep one of my Strike Teams around; by this point I've burned through pretty much all of my CPs.
Top of Turn 2Koptas!MOAR KOPTAS!Pictured: Orks being Slippery GitzNot feeling quite as clever nowThese two Tau are about to be cut up by helicopter blades
In the bottom of Turn 2, I have 2 objectives (the SW and NW objectives) and I hope to reclaim a good number more. The last Piranha jettisons its drones and falls back from combat with the Warboss. The Hammerhead scoots north for a good firing solution on the Warboss, who is marked by the Tetras, but its railgun misses, even with the re-roll. The accelerator burstcannons, though, make very short work of the Tankbustas (who were also marked), killing all 10.
As before, though, the main show is the reserves. My Crisis Team lands, squeezing into a very tight little envelope of space at just east of board center. The Commander fires everything at the Warboss, but the guy is just too tough and I do maaaybe
one wound. The bodyguards throw all their plasma rifle fire his way, too, but do nothing (plasma rifles never seem to do anything for me!). Their burst cannons kill off all the northern koptas and their flamers incinerate the southern ones (after the Cadre Fireblade falls back, of course), so they certainly pulled their weight.
The strike team in the southwest claim the SW objective and guns down the last of the Lootas while the foot strike team advances on the Runtherd and guns him down while stealing the objective out from under him. There are now 3 ork units left on the board--I have broken the enemy's back.
Bottom of Turn 2Calling in the closersCurrent ScoreOrks:
17 (5 primary, Green Tide, Biggest and Baddest)Tau:
33 (10 primary, Bring it Down, Decisive Action, Engage on All Fronts)Turn 3
Well, let's just see how much damage this warboss can do! The orks score one objective in the command phase. The Kustom Mega Kannon takes out one shield drone on the Crisis Suits and the Big Mek takes out the other one. The shoota boyz finally get around that ridge and gun down the last Piranha. The warboss guns down one gun drone on the NW objective and then lines up to charge the Hammerhead, which he does, doing a fair amount of damage (he doesn't die this turn--the map is wrong), but not enough to knock the vehicle below half wounds.
Top of Turn 3
In the bottom of turn 3, I score maximum objective points. The Hammerhead remembers it can shoot guns in combat in this edition, so it lowers its giant railgun and fires--it hits, even with the hit penalty, and reduces the warboss to a fine pink mist.
Elsewhere, the Commander and his bodyguards jet to the board center. The commander guns down all 10 shoota boyz himself, leaving the other crisis suits to split their firepower between the Kustom Mega Kannon and the Big Mek. The Kannon goes down fast to plasma rifles (finally they kill something!), but the Big Mek shrugs off a god-awful amount of firepower from just about everything
and is still standing at the end with 1 wound left. They aren't kidding when they call him 'Ard as Nails!
Bottom of Turn 3Final Score
Orks: 25 (Primary 5, Biggest/Baddest, Green Tide)
Tau: 54 (Primary 15, Decisive, Bring it Down Engage on All Fronts)Post Mortem
My opponent had some lousy breaks in this game--losing 3 meganobz to that explosion, the lucky overwatch shot from my Hammerhead--so I would say that the lopsidedness of my win here is as much to luck as anything else. I don't think either of our dice were especially good/bad in any other instance, though.
The primary things that went right for me, here, was that I scored all my secondaries every turn (well, Bring it Down expired, but I got all 12 points available to it), which really added up. The Tau kick out a LOT of firepower, as they should, and those Crisis Suits were just outrageously good, throwing down huge amounts of dice in the late game, when it was needed most. I also continue to love Hammerheads, whose ridiculously overpowered main gun is a delight.
The orks, by contrast, have a firepower problem. My opponent has been trying to balance out his elites (which are pretty good) with his troops (who are pretty bad), and in this game I think neither did enough work for him. The Meganobz and the tankbustas got the shaft, but I think the Lootas in particular are pretty lousy these days and I do think that ork mobs should come in units of 20, minimum, if they're to be expected to do any work. Given how crucial objective claiming is in this game, I think you can't really skimp too much on troops and expect to get those points. I do agree, though, that ork infantry, despite the Toughness increase, are in a bad spot.
So, another game determined by knock out and taking 4 hours to play 3 turns, but I won't lie - I still had a great time. The orks really bloodied me, too, which is nice. Anyway, thanks for reading and thanks, as always, to my opponent!