1500 Thousand Sons Vs Orks: The Scouring
Another brief-ish report, so I'll forego the opening fiction scene I usually do. Played an interesting game against the new orks a week or two back, again using my Thousand Sons (partially proxied, yes; going to keep the Drukhari on the shelf until I go six months without a point rebalance, because that amphetamine parrot's a pain in my ass).
Anyway, the list I brought is the same that took on the Craftworlders a few months back:Cult of Duplicity BattalionHQ
Exalted Sorcerer on Disc (Rehati) w/Athenaean Scrolls, Warlord: Otherworldly Presence, Psychic Powers: Tzeentch's Firestorm, Baleful Devolution, Sorcerous Facade
Exalted Sorcerer on Disc w/Sorcerous Arcana: Coruscator, High Acolyte: Master Misinformator, Psychic Powers: Doombolt, Weaver of Fates, Sorcerous Facade
Infernal Master: Fires of the Abyss, Malefic Maelstrom, Sorcerous Arcana: Helm of the Daemon's Eye, Psychic Powers: Presage, Sorcerous Facade
Thrall Sorcerer: Psychic Powers: Temporal Manipulation, Glamour of Tzeentch, Sorcerous FacadeTroops
5 Rubric Marines w/2x Warpflamers, Warpflame Pistol, Psychic Powers: Pyric Flux, Sorcerous Facade
5 Rubric Marines w/2x Warpflamers, Warpflame Pistol, Psychic Powers: Desecration of Worlds, Sorcerous Facade
5 Rubric Marines w/Soulreaper Cannon, Ardent Automata, Psychic Powers: Empyric Guidance, Sorcerous FacadeElites
5 Scarab Occult Terminators w/Hellfyre Missile Rack, Rites of Coalescence, Psychic Powers: Temporal Surge, Sorcerous Facade
Hellbrute w/Plasma Cannon, Fist, Inferno Combi-bolterHeavy Support
Mutalith Vortex BeastTransports
Chaos Rhino w/Havoc Launcher
Chaos Rhino w/Havoc Launcher
Some minor changes there--switched up some warlord traits, took some slightly different psychic powers, but basically the same stuff. Bad Moons BattalionHQ
Deffkilla Wartrike w/Da Best Armor Teef Can Buy
Weirdboy w/Cybork Body, Big Boss: Ard As Nails, Psychic Powers: Warpath, Da JumpTroops
12 Trukk Boyz w/Sluggas + Choppas, Nob w/Power Klaw
30 Boyz w/Shootas, Nob w/Power Klaw
5 Kommandos w/Nob (Power Klaw)
10 TankbustasFast Attack
5 Warbikes w/Nob (Power Klaw)Heavy Support
Kustom Mega Kannon
Kustom Mega Kannon
Kustom Mega KannonTransports
Trukk w/Big Shoota, Fortress on Wheels
Trukk w/Big Shoota
So, a totally different tactical challenge than the mobile eldar represented--I'm outnumbered, outgunned, and the orks are even more maneuverable than I am. Of course, they did take a psychic, so I've got some secondary points coming. Mission, Terrain, and Deployment
The board was set up as a kind of "overgrown ruins" kind of thing, with a big hill with a waterfall at about board center, blocking LOS, and a river running from board center to the NW corner and splitting, all of which represented difficult ground. There was a forest in the SW, and forest along the eastern board edge, interspersed with old ruins (we just called it a forest, basically), and a large ruin on a hill in the SW area that was obscuring. Beyond that, a smattering of hills and ridges and rocks and stuff, much of which didn't wind up being relevant to the battle.
The mission was The Scouring, putting us in small deployment zones at the short ends of the battlefield. Our secondary objectives were as follows:Orks:
Engage on All Fronts (table quarters), Assassinate, Strategic Scan (mission objective)Thousand Sons:
No Prisoners (kill points), Wrath of Magnus (psychic kills), Burn Empires (burn objectives)
In deployment, the Orks got to select ground and took the west edge amid the rivers. Two of the three megakannons went on the south flank, pretty far forward, backed up by the Koptas (behind the ruin) and the Bikes and with the grots in the forest. The north flank was the two trukks, one filled with boyz and the other with tankbustas, and the last Kustom Mega Kannon. The 30 shootas w/weirdboy went all the way in the back, no doubt to jump on me later. The Stormboyz would be dropping in later and the Kommandos took the center objective in the waterfall.
Part of the reason for his deployment being spread out (apart from the constrained deployment zone) is that I spread out my own deployment with the intent of making him match me and then used Master Misinformator to pull key units off one flank and put them all in the south, where it would take a little bit for the trukks to get to me. Everything in my army was squeezed together pretty tightly at the south western corner of my deployment zone and I held nothing in reserve--I was going to be using my Scarab Occult Terminators pretty much immediately.
Deployment:The Orks Spread OutThe Ksons Squeeze TogetherTurn 1
I won the roll-off (have a good record of that, lately!) and took first turn (because I don't have a choice these days). Everything shifted further south and west, with my soulreaper rubrics claiming and burning the southeastern objective. Most of my psychic powers were out of range for any offensive operations, but I was able to put both Glamour of Tzeentch and Weaver of Fates on the Vortex Beast, who then completely obliterated the Kommandos in assault and secured another objective. I used Sorcerous Facade to teleport my Terminators forward, who were able to blow up one of the kannons in the south. My remaining firepower (mostly havoc launchers and the hellbrute's plasma cannon) took a couple wounds off the other kannon and not much else.
Top of Turn 1The Legions of Change advanceNot quite close enough to claim a 3rd objective
In the bottom of turn 1, the Orks moved forward with both trukks and fired a hell of a lot of rokkits at the Vortex beast who, by virtue of its psychic defenses and the fact that it is *not* a tank, gleefully ignored all of it. Much of the rest of ork firepower was directed at the occult terminators, who were shot and charged by the bikes after being blasted by the koptas and the remaining kannons. They lost two terminators and two wounds of a third and, in response, killed two bikes. Finally, the huge mob of shoota boyz were Da-Jumped across the board to land just north of my forces, where I had carelessly left the Infernal Master exposed to fire. They shot that guy some absurd
number of times with "just showing off" which boiled down to about 10 saves, of which I failed only 3, and they then failed the charge. The Infernal Master sent his daemon buddies another "IOU" for saving his butt.
Bottom of Turn 1The Orks bear down on the TerminatorsClose one for the Infernal MasterThe Bikes attack!Score as of Round 1
Orks:2 (Engage on All Fronts
Thousand Sons: 0Turn 2
With my enemies within reach, I crack open ye ole can of whoop-ass. All rubrics in Rhinos disembark their transports. The northernmost group marches north, using Pyric Flux to beef up their warpflamers and incinerate a LOT of orks in the shoota mob. This damage is joined by the Vortex beast, who uses its power to melt another 5 orks or so in the shooting phase. Coupled with some smites from the Infernal Master and aspiring sorcerer, a pact that causes mortal wounds, and an assault by the orks, I wipe out 29 of those 30 using only a fraction of my resources. I lose one rubric in assault.
In the center/south, the Rhinos and sorcerer zip forward. The terminators are smited right out of combat before the shooting phase, their wounded member is restored to full wounds by Rites of Coalescence, and their firepower nukes the Koptas with some scarily accurate shooting. They and the other team of flamer rubrics charge the grots on the objective and slaughter them almost immediately. The final kannon on that side of the board also goes down to the hellbrute's plasma cannon, and the Vortex beast gets a renewal on his psychic defenses. A pretty devastating turn, all told.
Top of Turn 2Some aggressive movesThe shoota boyz are whittled downLast Nob StandingThis guy is a little large for a vortex beast, but I think I like the model better
In the bottom of turn 2, the tankbustas blow both my rhinos sky high, but most of the rest of their plans fail to pay off. Trukk Boyz charge the Vortex Beast and lose more than half their number in exchange for a scant few wounds of damage. The Stormboyz drop and try to charge the Infernal Master, but he is close enough to the flamer rubrics that he can use Inescapable Forewarning to allow them to flamer the hell out of the little squad, killing all but the nob. He then fails the charge (9" is harder when you have to re-roll *both* dice, it seems).
Finally, the Deffkilla Wartrike charges the Occult Terminators for not much damage and takes a couple wounds in return.
Bottom of Turn 2
At this point, it was 1am and we were both tired, so we called the game. Final Score
Orks: 8 (+3 for Engage, +2 for 1 successful scan)
Ksons: 15 (+4 for Burn Empires, +3 for Wrath of Magnus, +8 for kill points)Post-Mortem
While this game was called early, I don't think it's terribly
bold of me to suggest I probably had this in the bag. Other than the tankbustas, there wasn't too much threatening left, all his troops were wiped out or would be shortly, and I'd taken fairly minimal casualties. It was down to objectives now, and I think those favored myself.
In fighting the new orks, I find that, while base T5 does create some issues, they aren't insurmountable. The fact that my army relies a lot on mortal wounds counteracts a LOT of their durability, too. My dice were pretty strong, but not overwhelmingly so. My opponent's dice were fairly cold. I'll say this for certain: tankbustas are devastating to vehicles, no doubt. I don't think my opponent necessarily needed a squad of 10, either. Honestly, 2 squads of 5 would be better, and you could probably get away with even just one.
As for this new Thousand Sons force I'm messing with, everything it working just fine except for the Hellbrute, who is really just sort of backfield dead weight. I can't quite see what I'd replace it with, though, since its about as cheap as long-range support can get in this list, so it stays for now.
Anyway, despite us having to call it early (also, we started at 8pm--how on earth did 2 turns take 5 hours?), we both had fun. I'll have to get painting/modeling this new force--they deserve it. Thanks for reading and thanks, as always, to my opponent.