Astra Militarum vs Iron Hands - 3,000 Points
Battle Reports

Astra Militarum vs Iron Hands – 3,000 Points

This is my biggest game ever! 3,000 points of pure war!

Approximate Reading Time: 8 minutes

This Astra Militarum vs Iron Hands is my biggest game ever, I think. We used a mission from the Core Rulebook as the Grand Tournament 2021 pack doesn’t have 3,000 point missions – but then used the GT2021 pack for everything else, like Secondaries. This game was at Boards and Swords.

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Astra Militarum 3,000 Points

Starting CP: 18

Tank Ace -1CP

Imperial Commander’s Armoury -1CP

Super-Heavy Auxiliary Detachment -1CP

Assassin Vanguard Detachment -3CP

Strategic Reserves -1CP

I will have 11CP to start the battle with.

Assassin Vanguard Detachment

  • Callidus
  • Eversor
  • Vindicare
  • Culexus

Cadian Battalion Detachment

  • Warlord Company Commander with Kurov’s Aquila
  • Pask Plasma Executioner with Augar Array, Hunter Killer Missle, Lascannon and Plasma Cannons
  • Demolisher Tank Commander with Augar Array, Hunter Killer Missle, Lascannon and Multi-Meltas
  • 2x Infantry Squads, one in the Chimera, one in the Valkyrie
  • 3x Infantry Squads in Strategic Reserve – this is costing me 1CP
  • Tempestus Scions Squad with 10 models, including 4x Meltaguns, Tempestor with Plasma Pistol and Power Fist
  • Night Shroud Astropath in Valkyrie
  • Psychic Barrier Astropath in Chimera
  • Mental Fortitude Astropath in Valkyrie
  • Platoon Commander with the Relic of Lost Cadia, not in a transport
  • Platoon Commander
  • 10x Ratlings
  • Bane Wolf with Heavy Bolter and Hunter Killer Missile
  • 2x Deathstrike Missile Launchers with Hunter Killer Missile and Well-Stocked Magazines
  • A Chimera
  • Valkyrie with Hellstrike Missiles, Multilaser and 2x Heavy Bolters
  • Vulture with Punisher Cannons and a Heavy Bolter

Cadian Super-Heavy Auxiliary Detachment

  • Baneblade with Hunter Killer Missile, 1 pair of Twin Heavy Bolter and Lascannon Sponsons

Note that this now costs 3CP, but the Command Benefit is +2CP thanks to the Grand Tournament 2021 book. Thus, it costs 1CP in total, as noted above.


  • Retrieve Octarius Data
  • Engage On All Fronts
  • Bring It Down

Stratagems of Note

  • Crush ‘Em
  • Hail of Fire
  • Grenadiers
  • Vortex Missile
  • Overlapping Fields of Fire
  • Relentless
  • Defensive Gunners
  • Take Cover

Iron Hands 3,000 Points

This is Simon’s 2,000 GT list, plus an extra 1,000 points.


  • Iron Father Feirros
  • Chief Librarian
  • 3x 5 Intercessors (AutoBolt)
  • Redemptor (Macro Plasma)
  • Redemptor (Onslaught Gatling)
  • Invictor Warsuit (Ironhail)
  • 2x 3 Outriders


  • Chapter Master Gravis Armour
  • 3x Bladeguard
  • 3x Aggressor (Boltstorm)
  • 2x 4 Eradicators
  • 2x Reaper
  • 2x Gladiator


  • Retrieve Octarius Data
  • Engage On All Fronts
  • Bring It Down

The same as me!

The Mission – Lines of Battle

Neither of us took the Mission Specific Secondary, but the Primary on this one is a little different. You score on the Primary on the following conditions

  • 5VP if you control one or more objective markers.
  • 5VP if you control at least one objective marker labelled A, and at least one objective marker labelled C.
  • 5VP if you control at least one objective marker labelled A, at least one objective marker labelled B and at least one objective marker labelled C.

The Primary Objective cannot be scored in the first battle round.


Deployment Overview

Deployment Overview

Turn 1

I got the first turn and rolled my forces forward. The Vulture and Valkyrie moved right forwards to secure maximum Engage On All Fronts points this turn – which was the plan. The Valkyrie managed to eject its infantry unit into the enemy deployment zone – where they proceeded to do a Retrieve Octarius Data action.

I got all my powers off to, so the Baneblade was -1 to hit and +1 save. All good so far!

My shooting was poor though as the Deathstrikes could not fire the Baneblade has limited sight. It killed a couple of Intercessors and no Eradicators – I think I rolled 4 shots for its main cannons which is 3D6 shots. Ouch. I did finish off a Lancer Gladiator using the Baneblade and Pask. Pask is so good!

The Iron Hands hit back, hard. Really hard. As a comparison, combined fire from all my army killed a few T4 Marines and one 12 Wound Iron Hands tank. One squad of Eradicators did 22 Wounds to my Baneblade. One squad. I lost a Demolisher to the other squad.

This was a big blow and it was my own fault for moving the Baneblade forward so far, but if it had stayed back it would have shot at nothing. I was not going to give up just yet though! I also lost all my Ratlings this turn after a Reaper Gladiator peaked around a corner and wasted them with ease. My Valkyrie also got bracketed and the Vulture was just out of being bracketed.

Turn 2

In the second turn, I extended the Callidus’ Reign of Confusion and also activated the Relic of Lost Cadia. You can see from the score sheet below that Simon burnt through 11CP over turns 1 and 2 – the Callidus was working well! It was also making him think about each CP spent.

I brought in just one squad of Infantry to do the Retrieve Octarius Data action and also ensure I got max points for Engage On All Fronts again.

My shooting was poor again with both Deathstikes failing their rolls and the Baneblade being BS6 now. It was on 2 Wounds thanks to the Eradicators and a Smite in turn 1. The Bane Wolf moved up and managed to kill three bikes using its Heavy Bolter and Chem Cannon! Yay! It was a minor win but did remove them from an objective.

Pask nearly finished off a Reaper Gladiator but those 6+ Feel No Pain saves are fantastic.

The Baneblade went pop this turn along with the Valkyrie and Vulture. Pask was now targeted too but survived on 4 Wounds. This was going to be tough now as I had lost so much of my hard-hitting units and my squads were being used for Secondary Objectives – and not the Primary.

Turn 3

I brought in my Scions this turn along with the Callidus and Culexus. I forget what the Callidus did, maybe killed one Eradicator and the Culexus failed their charge. The Scions overcharged Plasma Guns to try and stop the advancing Intercessors on the far side, three died from Gets Hot! Argh!

A squad on the far side did my third Retrieve Octarius Data action.

I used Relentless on Pask to get him to the top bracket and opened up on a Redemptor – but they reduce each shot by 1 Damage. So my 8 unsaved Wounds did not do 16 Damage, it did 8 Wounds. Simon then rolled five 6s for the Feel No Pain saves. Pask did just 3 Wounds to the Redemptor at BS2+ rerolling ones. Sigh.

I got a Deathstrike off this turn and used Vortex Missile! It killed 3 out of 4 Eradicators and did wounds to characters and the Blade Guard. It also finished off an Agressor and 3 Wounds to a Lancer Gladiator. An OK damage output I think? The Feel No Pains were doing Simon proud.

It was awesome to do this in a game! I put it around the red cargo containers from the overview shot above, this area of the battlefield was pretty full of enemies for the first 3 turns as they inched forward picking off my vehicles.

The Callidus died this turn along with Pask. My Culexus would not die, the Iron Hands could not hit it! Being forced to be BS6+ is not something the Space Marines like! The Scions were minced up with ease. I was trying to hold onto as much as possible and not get too hammered.

Turn 4 & 5

My final infantry squad came and performed my final Retrieve Octarius Data action. With the Culexus still alive I was still able to get points for Engage On All Fronts in turn 4 and 5.

Turn 5 was jut adding up points for the Iron Hands as my force was wrecked.


This was a great game, despite the loss, thank you, Simon!

I made a mistake I think with my Baneblade, bringing it forward to get line-of-sight – but without doing that it might have just sat there all game and been shot at. It can be seen through obscuring terrain.

Using the Valkyrie, Vulture and Strategic Reserve infantry squads to get decent points on the Secondaries was fun and effective. It did mean I struggled with the Primary though as I had no board presence in the table centre. More infantry?

The Callidus Assasin was worth taking again. When those 4+ rolls come on turns 1 and 2 it really helps the Guard claw a slight advantage back.

Those Eradicators are insane… too insane? I will leave you with this.

Final Score

Astra Militarum – 61
Iron Hands – 89

Iron Hands Victory