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Dark Angels vs Assassins & Astra Militarum - 2,000 points
Battle Reports
Posted By Jake

Dark Angels vs Assassins & Astra Militarum – 2,000 points

Another game vs Space Marines, Dark Angels this time!


Approximate Reading Time: 14 minutes

After the terrible performance in my last game vs Black Templars, I have decided to remove a lot of the randomness of artillery against this game vs the Dark Angels!

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Astra Militarum List – 2,000 Pts

Astra Militarum – Battalion Detachment

Tank Ace: -1CP

Regimental Doctrine: Agile Warriors, Wilderness Survivors

  • Warlord Company Commander with Kurov’s Aquila, no Warlord Trait – HQ
  • Executioner Tank Commander with Weapon Expert Tank Ace, Hunter Killer Missile and 3x Heavy Bolters – HQ
  • Punisher Tank Commander with Weapon Expert Tank Ace, Hunter Killer Missile and 3x Heavy Bolters – HQ
  • 20 Conscripts – using my Catachan models painted by The Unrelenting Brush – Troop
  • 20 Conscripts – using my Valhallan models – Troop
  • 4x Infantry Squads with Vox-Casters, using Cadian models – each in a Chimera with a Hunter-Killer Missile, one Chimera has a Heavy Flamer instead of a Multi-Laser – Troop
  • Astropath with Night Shroud – Elite
  • Astropath with Psychic BarrierĀ – Elite
  • Veteran Squad with a Vox-Caster and 3x Plasma Guns with a Hades Breaching DrillĀ Elite
  • 3x Platoon CommandersĀ Elite

Officio Assassinorum – Vanguard Detachment

  • Vindicare Assassin
  • Eversor Assassin
  • Culexus Assassin
  • Callidus Assassin

Summary

I’ve tried to remove all the randomness from this list, which was my downfall in my last game.

Randomness

The Plasma Executioner has D6 shots but this can be mitigated via Hail of Fire against Vehicles. So I’m allowing myself this evil.

The Punisher came up as a recommendation from a few people after my dismal performance against the Black Templars. 40 guaranteed shots is nothing to be sniffed at. And now at AP-1 thanks for Weapon Expert.

Doctrines

My Regimental Doctrines I struggled with. They sort of work against each other. Agile Warriors allows my Infantry to re-roll Advance rolls, while Wilderness Survivors gives my Infantry the benefit of cover if they don’t Advance. So I either Advance and it goes really well, or I don’t and I’m in cover. Hmm.

My overall thinking behind this madness is that if my Infantry is Advancing then it’ll make it into whatever cover it’s heading for. If it’s not Advancing then it’ll get cover in the open.

I also want to link up this ability to benefit from cover more than usual with my psychic powers. Namely Nightshroud and Psychic Barrier. A unit of infantry in cover, with the Take Cover Stratagem and with Psychic Barrier will have a 2+ Armour Save. And with Nightshroud they could be -1 to hit too! That’ll make one hell of an objective holding unit, especially with the Conscripts.

Assassins

Finally, the Assassins, I’ve not used them for a while so that’s one reason to take them.

The other reason is that Marines rely on characters handing out buffs, like in my last game the Chaplin, Captain and Apothecary all ran around together handing out buffs and healing dead Marines.

The Vindicare can start on the battlefield and the others will Deep Strike. I still think it’ll be hard to kill the characters because there is Trans-Human and screens to contend with, oh and Auspex Scan.

Stratagems of Note

  • Crush ‘Em – for the Hades Breaching Drill
  • Mobile Command Vehicle – for a Chimera, but if my Company Commander is inside – I cannot use Kurov’s Aquila
  • Grenadiers – if a squad cannot be ordered to First Rank Fire, Second Rank Fire, Grenadiers is better than just flat out shooting
  • Inspired Tactics – for an extra Order
  • Defensive Gunners – could be useful on a Leman Russ when charged
  • Experienced Eye – gives an extra AP for my Veterans, AP-4 Plasma Guns vs Marines will be golden
  • Hail of Fire – I removed the random artillery and only have my Plasma Tank Commander with random shots, Hail of Fire will help here – but only vs <VEHICLES>
  • Relentless – for a Chimera to speed forward or to enable a Tank Commander to maximise their shooting before dying
  • Head First – unlikely to be used, but allows a disembarking unit from a Chimera to charge +2″
  • All the Assassin Stratagems – if I can remember them all!

Astra Militarum Secondaries

  • Raise the Banners
  • Engage on All Fronts
  • Assassinate

Dark Angels List – 2,000 Pts

This was done from memory so I am missing Relics and Warlord Traits;

  • 3x Talon Land Speeders with Assault Cannons and Heavy Bolters
  • 2x Deathwing Command Squads of 2x Terminators
  • 2x Squads of 3x Attack Bikes with Multi-Meltas
  • A Squad of 7x Intercessors
  • A Squad of 5x Infiltrators
  • An Ancient – Warlord
  • 8X Deathwing Terminators with Thunderhammers and Storm Sheilds
  • A Librarian
  • A Chief Apothecary on a Bike

Dark Angels Secondaries

  • Raise the Banners
  • Oaths of Moment
  • Stubborn Defiance

Retrieval – The Mission

Neither od took the Mission Specific Secondary, so the map was all that matters here.

Deployment

Both sides deployed pretty conservatively. I placed my Leman Russ just out of reach of the Attack Bikes with my Chimeras being upfront and expecting to take the brunt of the enemy attacks.

Battle Round 1

I had an OK first turn. I got one power, Nightshroud, onto my Valhallan Conscripts. All my infantry was in cover at this point I had managed to get my Conscripts onto two objectives and a Chimera onto another.Ā The Vindicare actually did OK for once, he killed no one but used Double Shoot to reduce the Librarian and Ancient to a single Wound each. These were then promptly healed three wounds each during the enemy’s turn. I also may be killed a Terminator. This was going to be really hard as the Land Speeders were all characters and were protected by the Deathwing Command Squads. I could not target those Land Speeders at all unless I killed the Deathwing Command Squads that were acting as a bodyguard. I raised banners on the two Objectives I had infantry on.

I lost two Chimeras from the Attack Bikes, and the troops inside them disembarked into objectives. Further firing from a Land Speeder onto one of those squads reduced them down to two models – I used the auto pass Morale on these guys to ensure they stated put to give me three Objectives in my turn 2. The Valhallan Conscripts were in cover, hadĀ Nightshroud on them and I used Take Cover to give them an overall 3+ Armour Save. They only lost 6 models from all the shooting from two Land Speeders – this was amazing. Those Land Speeders had two Assault Cannons each and two Heavy Bolters each, they are BS2+ and were AP-2 during the first turn – so to lose just 6 was amazing.

No Dark Angel CPs were spent during this first turn, so the Callidus’ Reign of Confusion never came into effect.

1st PlayerJake (Astra Militarum)
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Engage on All Fronts
Secondary 3
Assassinate
10000
2nd PlayerDavid (Dark Angels)
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Oaths of Moment
Secondary 3
Stubborn Defiance
10020

Battle Round 2

I had held onto three Objectives and the lack of movement from the Dark Angels meant I controlled more than them too.

I spent 2CP to extend the Callidus’ Reign of Confusion into this turn.

My movement was limited here, I just ensured the infantry left in the open after their Chimeras were destroyed were moved into cover.

I failed both Psychic Powers. I raised another banner, I now had three up.

My Hades Breaching Drill, Eversor, Callidus and Culexus all came in now too. They all came in behind the Dark Angels, with mixed results.

The Veterans killed an Intercessor or two with Plasma and the Drill failed its charge into a Land Speeder. But took 7 wounds in the process during Overwatch. Ouch.

The Callidus charged and killed the enemy Warlord, netting me 4VP. The Eversor charged the Intercessors but failed to kill a single model.

The Culexus I placed near the centre of the table, away from my Astropaths but within 18″ of the enemy Librarian. Any Psychic Tests taken within 18″ of the Culexus are -2 to that test.

Back to shooting, I was incredibly lucky and my removal of randomness paid off. My Punisher Tank Commander with Heavy Bolters killed a whole squad of Attack Bikes. On the other flank, my Plasma Tank Commander did the same but unfortunately left one bike on one wound. I think I finished it off with a Chimera! But that was just about all the enemy anti-tank weaponry destroyed in one go.

The Dark Angels hit back, killing my Callidus, wounding the Eversor and killing all my Valhallans – but I still had that objective thanks to other infantry squads merging on that point. The Culexus came into its own on this turn, both enemy powers failed thanks to the -2 of the Culexus. I lost my Veterans too.

Finally, one amazing thing occurred during this turn, I made every single 4+ roll for the Callidus’ Reign of Confusion – David spent 8CP in one turn thanks to this! He was now on 0CP.

1st PlayerJake (Astra Militarum)
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Engage on All Fronts
Secondary 3
Assassinate
10000
215234
2nd PlayerDavid (Dark Angels)
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Oaths of Moment
Secondary 3
Stubborn Defiance
10020
210232

Battle Round 3

The Dark Angels had now moved up, so while I held three, I did not hold more for the Primary Objective.

My shooting was proving hard as everything was too far away for my Guardsmen to shoot, which was fine and because I could not target the Land Speeders which I could see. I went for the Terminators and killed one or two. The Apothecary was out in the open after stretching itself to heal multiple units. The Punisher saw to that and wasted him. My Drill moved up and reattempted its charge into the Land Speeder and succeded – it could not Overwatch because David had no CP left! The Drill finally had its moment and did 24 Wounds in total against the Land Speeder! Wow! I usedĀ Crush ‘Em on it too.

The Terminators killed the Eversor and consolidated on the back most Objective which was being used for Stubborn Defiance. I was not shifting them from there!

1st PlayerJake (Astra Militarum)
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Engage on All Fronts
Secondary 3
Assassinate
10000
215234
310326
2nd PlayerDavid (Dark Angels)
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Oaths of Moment
Secondary 3
Stubborn Defiance
10020
210232
310233

Battle Round 4

At this point, we had not added up scores and just kept playing. We knew it was close but could easily swing either way.

I was still doing well on the Primary, with lots of board control and the Dark Angels were struggling with a presence on the battlefield.

My main focus now was just to kill the Librarian for extra VP and continue to hold my objectives. I do not think the Dark Angels would come up the battlefield to get me, but those anti-infantry weapons on the Land Speeders could shred them all given the chance.

However, I did not kill the Librarian, he was well hidden and I could not see him. The Culexus was just too underpowered to finish him off too.

The Dark Angels continued to hold two objectives, including their one for Stubborn Defiance. Killing my units was not really the name of their game at this point, other than to stop me from getting a couple of points for Engage on All Fronts.Ā  The Drill was lost this turn to fire from the Land Speeders.

1st PlayerJake (Astra Militarum)
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Engage on All Fronts
Secondary 3
Assassinate
10000
215234
310326
415320
2nd PlayerDavid (Dark Angels)
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Oaths of Moment
Secondary 3
Stubborn Defiance
10020
210232
310233
410235

Battle Round 5

The last turn was fast and not much happened because all that mattered was, could I kill the Librarian for 3VP. I did not.

The Culexus died, but it did not matter at this point.

1st PlayerJake (Astra Militarum)
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Engage on All Fronts
Secondary 3
Assassinate
10000
215234
310326
415320
515330
2nd PlayerDavid (Dark Angels)
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Oaths of Moment
Secondary 3
Stubborn Defiance
10020
210232
310233
410235
510235
The final view of the stuff I had left - a lot!

The final view of the stuff I had left – a lot!

Final Score Sheet

Battle SizeStrikeforceMission: Retrieval
1st PlayerJake (Astra Militarum)
Battle RoundVictory Points Scored
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Engage on All Fronts
Secondary 3
Assassinate
10000
215234
310326
415320
515330
End Game45300
Objective Totals45/4514/1510/1510/15
Battle Ready ScoreThe Army was Battle Ready = +10 victory points
Victory Points Total89/100
2nd PlayerDavid (Dark Angels)
Battle RoundVictory Points Scored
Primary Objective
Take & Hold
Secondary 1
Raise the Banners
Secondary 2
Oaths of Moment
Secondary 3
Stubborn Defiance
10020
210232
310233
410235
510235
End Game4021415
Objective Totals40/4510/1514/1515/15
Battle Ready ScoreThe Army was Battle Ready = +10 victory points
Victory Points Total89/100

Final Score

Astra Militarum89
Dark Angels89

Draw

Summary – Dark Angels vs Astra Militarum

Well, wow! What a game, a draw! This was such a good game, it was so close, we knew it would be close but this close! No!

I really enjoyed the Assassins and their use against Space Marines is really handy I think. Space Marines rely so much on characters and threatening those characters makes a difference to how a Marine player has to play the game. Even though only the Callidus killed an enemy Character, the way in which the Assassins came in and affected how David was going to play made a huge difference.

Also, the Callidus’ Reign of Confusion was perhaps a big deal, David burned through CP quickly because of it which may have affected how he played overall. It must have removed some of the tools Marines like to rely on?

I am so glad I finally managed to get a Drill into combat! and 24 Wounds too!

My next game is in a couple of weeks, vs Eldar!


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