Battle Reports
Posted By Jake

Tournament Debrief – Reign of Darkness

With my first event over its time for a debrief, in short, it was great!


Approximate Reading Time: 10 minutes

The dust has settled after my first event, so its time for a Tournament Debrief. It was small and casual and it was perfect for me. 8 players having three games over the course of a single day.

Hats off to Boards and Swords for getting the vibe right. The last event had closer to 20 participants but the holiday season and hot weather possibly kept people away. The tables were superb as well. All different and varied.

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If you’re around Derby go check them out. It’s £3 per player for a table and they do hot and cold drinks. Plus crisps and chocolate.

The tables look great and there are plenty. A quick counter in my mind puts the total close to 14. There is a store too with Games Workshop stuff as well as tonnes of minis from other games.

Tournament Debrief – The Outcome

I came 7th from 8 players so I was not last! This is fantastic! So while it’s not a high position I’m happy with it.

I lost two games and won one. All games were Maelstrom of War.

You can find my Astra Militarum Tournament List on this blog.

Game One

Versus Tzeentch Demons, I lost 14 – 9.

Game Two

Versus Nurgle and Khorne Demons, I lost 16 – 4.

Game Three

Versus Dark Angels I won 16 – 11.

Game Debriefs

I cannot remember all the rolls in all the games! That’s a job for the Mechanicus! I can remember the highs and the lows though. So here goes…

Astra Militarum vs Tzeentch Demons – Tournament Debrief

A rather annoying mission for me, Cloak and Shadows. Shooting from over 18″ range was -1 to hit.

Luckily though the Demons just wanted to get close, so the 18″ shooting was not as detrimental as it could’ve been.

Guard deployment

Guard deployment

The Armigers excelled here. The Helverin was able to take 12 wounds from a Lord of Change in my first turn it would take the rest of the game for me to remove the final four though.

The Warglaives destroyed three of the flying Chariots using their huge chain swords. They are far more effective at melee than shooting. They really need to be in combat applying the pressure on turn one. A turn one charge is not impossible with their 14″ move.

Once the melee begins though it just continues and continues. Horrors and some sort of flying little demons came from Deep Strike. The flying ones were able to tar put the Helverin. Then roll away and into my Guardsmen. A Demon Prince was able to do the same.

Chaos are coming!

Chaos is coming!

That Demon Prince took a long time to kill. There was a turn where both Warglaives fired their Thermal Spears at it. Total wounds, zero.

Amazingly the Lord of Change’s final wound was taken by an exploding Sentinel. The Sentinel only deals one Mortal Wound when it dies. The Lord of Change has one wound. The Emperor provides the tools, but just not necessarily in the right tools, in the right order, in the right place or at the right time.

It was close though. I was losing a lot according to victory points. But the game ended very closely. The Demons had four models left. I had a Chimera, a Warglaive, the Helverin, two Wyverns and a handful of Guardsmen. There was one character with four wounds that would have been my undoing had the game on to turn 7. It was on a disc thing, in the gallery below, and it would have just avoided me for the rest of the game. Denying me a tabling victory.

A fantastic game still.

Game One – Gallery

I took many pictures, here are the rest…

Astra Militarum vs Nurgle & Khorne Demons – Tournament Debrief

Spoils of War was the mission here. It allows you to take Secure Objective X Tactical Cards even if the enemy has the card. The player who scores the most Secure Objective X cards gets one extra victory point.

Guard deployment

Guard deployment

This Demon army was a lot less elite than the Tzeentch army. It has a lot of models. Two units of about 27 Plague Bearers and a unit of 20 or so Khorne Blood Letters. Plus three Demon Princes oh various types. Five Nurgle Flyers (not drones though) – ripe for my Helverin I think!

Demon deployment

Demon deployment

There were also a couple of characters that buffed surrounding troops.

One Prince and the Blood Letters were Deep Striking.

Things started well. The Helverin killed three of the five flyers. The rest fled. I had the first turn which also helped.

Things got very messy, very fast

Things got very messy, very fast

The rest of my shooting meh. The Demons are hard to kill. 5+ Invulnerable Save and then the 5+ Disgustingly Resilient is really handy.

The Demons advanced as did I. I knew that combat would be my undoing, so I threw my Guardsmen into the middle of the battlefield to speed bump the enemy charges and save my Wyverns, Heavy Bolters and Plasma Team.

Poor placement of a Demon Prince (pictured above with a large axe and orange skin) meant he was ripe for the slaughter. Both Warglaives were able to unleash everything on him and then charge. Killing him in turn two.

Things are looking good!

Things are looking good!

Things are looking good at this point; Plague Bearers are dying, a Demon Prince is gone and a buffing minor character is dead to Ratling Sniper fire. The drones are gone too! I am behind on victory points, but I am beating back the green tide.

And then this happened…

A red tide arrives!

A red tide arrives!

The Khorne Demon Prince and Blood Letters arrive via Deep Strike. The Blood Letters have a 3D6 charge and smash into my Warglaives, destroying both! Gulp.

The tables have turned and I am now on the back foot. They consolidate into a Sentinel and surround it. Locking them in combat and disabling all my shooting against them. The Demon Prince is a character with 8 wounds and I am unable to shoot him too. The red tide then continues to charge into my backfield and wipe me out – nearly.

I was not tabled and I fought to the very end. A wyvern survived along with the Ratlings and some Guardsmen.

Game Two – Gallery

Here are the rest of the pictures…

Astra Militarum vs Dark Angels – Tournament Debrief

The last game was Deadlock. Start with six cards on turn one, five on turn two, etc. CP costs double at the start of turn three.

Dark Angels deployment making maximum use of Aura abilities

Dark Angel’s deployment making maximum use of Aura abilities

While the Dark Angels hunkered into the table centre with a Tac Squad on each flank on an objective I spread out across the while battlefield edge. I made sure to move up and take objectives on my turn one, I got the first turn, to ensure I was covering as many objectives as possible. Just in case the cards were kind.

Stay sharp men!

Stay sharp men!

My shooting was somewhat effective, but could not even kill a squad of five Scouts. The Hellblasters were a pain. When dead, on a 4+, they can shoot me! Argh! The closest Armiger was taking wounds on my first turn and it was not even the enemy’s turn yet!

Pesky Scouts in cover

Pesky Scouts in cover

The Dark Angels stayed still. The cards they had meant they needed me dead rather than taking objectives. Their shooting focused on my Armiger Warglaives which were now halfway across the battlefield.

Dark Angel view of the battle

Dark Angel view of the battle

As my Guardsmen gradually took over the board the Wyverns, Helvrein and Warglaives would do most of the damage. The Guardsmen could take objectives and score points relatively safely as the Dark Angels concentrated on my big guys.

A Warglaive did die on turn one however from Hellblaster fire. The other made it into combat and would deal a helluva lot of damage before exploding in a prime location. Before dying, it took out two bikes, the enemy Warlord and did several wounds against the Land Speeder that was giving the Dark Angels -1 to hit when I shoot at them.

The explosion destroyed two more bikes, destroyed the Land Speeder (which didn’t explode) and did wounds on the Hellblasters and Librarian. That was epic.

The Helverin destroyed both of the Dark Angel bombers over the course of the game. That thing is now legendary. During this event, it took out about 8 big flying enemies. I need more!

The Astra Militarum swarm forward

The Astra Militarum swarm forward

I managed to secure all objectives for 3 + D3 victory points. It seemed that my masses of models had now paid off and I had total board control.

A stunning victory and a great game!

Game Three – Gallery

More pics…

Tournament Debrief Summary

I really enjoyed myself at this event. Three games in a day is a lot of gaming, standing up and switched on time. But really fun.

I noticed a couple of things when playing that I have not before. Playing with my group we use the same armies and the same style of forces. But it was nice to see other armies and see how they function.

  • No CP – forces in the event had very few command points. In the first game, the Chaos forces had no CP by the time the game started. All were used to place units into Deep Strike. My 15CP was probably more than all other forces added together!
  • Defensive stuff – this is hard in the Guard because they are so squishy. But the second Demon army and the Dark Angels had actively tried to make their armies tougher. The -1 to hit on the Plague Bearers when there are more than 20 models is very annoying. Especially coupled with the Invulnerable Save and Disgustingly Resilient. The Dark Angels also had -1 to hit from the Land Speeder.

And that is it, folks! I will certainly do an event like this again. It didn’t attract cheesy armies and the games were fun, with an edge of competitiveness.

Tournament Debrief – Reign of Darkness
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