Adeptus Mechanicus and Astra Militarum/Imperial Guard "Wiki"

Ave Omnissiah!

My blog is primarily my own personal fluff in the Warhammer 40,000 universe regarding the Draconis system such as the Knight House Yato in Draconis III, the Imperial Guard...I mean, Astra Militarum regiment trained there, the Draconian Armored Force, and the Forge World of Draconis IV with its Adeptus Mechanicus priesthood and Skitarii legions, and perhaps the Titan Legion, Legio Gojira (which will never happen because I don't have money for Forge World Titans).

Oh, and I'll throw in the Thousand Sons from time to time because they're my favorite Space Marine Legion. I refuse to believe that they are Traitors! They're just...ahem...secretly loyal to the Imperium!

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Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Battle Reports 4

Yeah, that isn't a typo. This isn't just a battle report, it's battle reports, as in I'm using plural. Why? Well, I promised to write about my Adeptus Mechanicus War Convocation versus Dark Angels battle the other day, and I'm doing that in this post. However, I had a second battle today and so I thought I might as well combine the battle reports.

Well, neither will be a full-length report in detail, but rather summaries and analysis, where I had gone wrong and made mistakes. Well, I'll begin with the Dark Angels battle first.

Adeptus Mechanicus War Convocation versus Dark Angels

First off, let's start with a picture of my opponent.

Dark Angels bikers

Damned Darkshroud and their 2+ cover saves with re-rolls

Yes. This was to be the bane of my shooting-based army. Freaking 2+ cover saves with re-rolls. I rolled a lot of hits, he made his cover saves, and the few ones he rolled, he got to re-roll them and save them. In the end I could only kill his enemy through assault. Damned buggers.

I really hate bikes. Oh man, imagine if I had played against an Eldar jetbike or Windrider Host list. *shudders*

Adeptus Mechanicus War Convocation
 And so my fearsome Adeptus Mechanicus War Convocation has arrived on the table. My opponent took one look at it and said, "that's a very scary list." As it turned out, I can have the scariest list and all the overpowered rules in the universe and still lose by a large margin because of my inexperience and lack of tactical knowledge.


Even more deployment
Long story short, I rolled first, my opponent failed to seize the initiative, and I kind of...put all my units in the wrong place? I scouted my Skitarii battle maniple to move them closer, but it's just too bad I can't charge in the same turn, so oh well. Anyway, I basically unleashed lots of shots on them but I failed to kill any bikers all because they had 2+ cover saves with re-rolls and jink. Bloody hell.

My opponent did some damage in the first turn, but not a lot. Skitarii and Mechanicus are tough bastards. I can't say the same for my poor Imperial Knight, though. The poor dude weathered a lot of melta shots, which took 5 hull points off him. In just one turn, he was down to a single hull point. What the hell?!

The next turn went a bit better because I could assault, and as usual I scored First Blood. Adeptus Mechanicus is efficient at killing things, as long as they don't have 2+ cover saves with re-rolls. I wiped out three Biker squads with my Sicarian Infiltrators, Sicarian Ruststalkers and Imperial Knight in combat. I was using a Knight Crusader, but it didn't matter. I didn't need Strength D weapon - S10 AP2 (thanks to Smash) was more than enough to stomp the poor bikers into oblivion. My Vanguard also opened fire and wiped out an entire tactical squad who didn't have 2+ cover saves because the Darkshroud had moved away and they didn't have jink. YAY!

Unfortunately, as usual, the command biker squad with Warlord ran off and continued to endure with their cover saves. Sigh.

This was where I made a mistake. My assault orientated squads were too far away to reach my opponent. My Ruststalkers got wiped out by plasma cannons with only my Princeps left, my Imperial Knight was blown up, and funnily enough I rolled a one so my Princeps survived the Strength D explosion. Hilarious. I think my Infiltrators were also decimated. My first squad of Kataphron Destroyers got wiped out too. I tried to charge my Kastelan robots and apparently one of them died to Overwatch fire and my charge failed so I wasted him. Ouch.

Oh yeah. I learned that plasma culverins are not that useful. I should have stuck to heavy grav-cannons. People complain about the immunity to the Gets Hot! rule being overpowered, but they couldn't be further from the truth. For one thing, I can't spam plasma calivers because I can only take one squad of Vanguard and Rangers each, and the plasma culverins just weren't doing their jobs because of scatter and other stuff. My opponent later told me volume of fire would have worked better than spamming pie plates. The Cognis flamers ignored cover, but the Space Marines' high armor prevented any damage from being done. The game began to turn against me from then on and I slowly watched my units get eradicated one by one. The Vanguard were decimated. My lone Ruststalker Princeps was killed. My Kastelan robot and Kataphron Destroyers were slaughtered in combat. My Rangers were also riddled with holes. My Ironstrider Ballistarius outlasted them all, only to be glanced to death by turn 5.

The only unit that survived and endured were my Onager Dunecrawlers, their AV12 and emanatus forcefields shrugging off whatever fire my opponent threw at them. They did massive damage, wiping out a plasma squad, getting into assault and slaying the Warlord right after my opponent killed mine, and basically wiped out most of the biker squads. I think I had my Rangers kill the missile launcher squad before they died, but other than that, I wasn't able to do much damage.

In the end, I was tabled, my Onager Dunecrawlers making a good account of themselves as they wrecked stuff up in assault thanks to their Cognis Manipulator giving them S10 AP2 in assault. However, the stupid bikers had Hit and Run so they kept fleeing from combat, leaving my Dunecrawlers open to fire from the jinking landspeeders. Argh. BUT my Dunecrawlers actually lasted 7 or 8 turns before my opponent was able to wreck all 3 of them, making a good account of themselves and being a nuisance.

So I lost by getting tabled while my opponent had half his army left.

Later I was schooled by him, with him teaching me where I went wrong. There's a whole list, so I'll list them:

1. Target priority - if I had targeted the Darkshroud in the beginning and assaulted it with my Imperial Knight, he would lose all his 2+ cover saves with re-rolls and become vulnerable to my shooting army.

2. Deployment - I had placed my melee orientated units in all the wrong places. They were too far away to engage the units that really mattered. I also placed my Imperial Knight in the most vulnerable position possible, which led to him losing 5 hull points in just 1 turn.

3. Forgetting my upgrades and Omnispexes. I had invulnerable saves for the Alphas and Princeps which I didn't use. I also forgot about the Omnispexes that reduced cover saves by 1. Ouch.

So he gave me advice:

1. Practice - practice more, have more games, keep playing and gain as much experience as possible. Learn how to play my army and get used to it as much as possible. For example, I realized the Icarus Array with its 5 (15 for 3 Dunecrawlers) ignores cover shots would have fared much better against the damned Darkshroud and Landspeeders. Damn it.

2. Smaller games - play smaller games before attempting large, 2,000-point games where everything is so complex and overwhelming, with so many things to remember. Start at 500 or 1,000-point games.

I took that advice to heart, which led to my 2nd battle today. And as promised, here's the runthrough. I forgot to bring my cell phone, so no pictures for it. Well, I used the Skitarii Battle Maniple, which granted me an extra bonus where units within 12" of my Onager Dunecrawlers get a leadership of 10. Not very useful as it turned out because the majority of my army was pretty far away from my Dunecrawlers. It turned out to be pretty one-sided in the end.

Skitarii (Battle Maniple) versus Tau Empire

This time I ended up starting second and my opponent went first. Both of us had scouts - his was his Pathfinders, mine was my entire army. He also had his Stealth battlesuits infilitrate, and I did the same with my Sicarian Infiltrators.

Turn 1

It started off fairly simple and I had some lucky rolls. His Broadside scored a penetrating hit against my Onager Dunecrawlers, and rolled a 5 on the vehicle damage table, which meant 7 - explosion and wreckage. To my amusement, I rolled a 4 for my emanatus forcefield invulnerable save and my Dunecrawler remained completely unscathed.

I couldn't say the same for my other units. My Sicarian Ruststalkers lost one guy to Fire Warriors fire, as did my Sicarian Infiltrators, so I lost 2 models in one turn. But damn, the Sicarians were tough bastards. Did you know they survived a hell lot of shots? Their 4+ armor save saved them from S5 AP5 shots from the Fire Warriors, and they even had some lucky Feel No Pain rolls - I was fortunate to get some 5's. In addition, they were multiple wound models, so the 3 wounds that made it through meant only 1 model was killed, and 1 model with 1 wound left. I'm so glad the elite Skitarii assassins were so tough - my single-wound Skitarii Vanguard and Rangers with 6+ Feel No Pain would never have survived that.

My turn and I moved all my units closer because Tau are horrible at close combat and my Skitarii are decent melee attackers. The Sicarians aren't just decent, they are monsters in close combat and I pity any Tau who end up meleeing them. Funnily enough, I never got to lock any of the Tau units in combat until near the end, but anyway scouting in the first turn prevents me from charging.

My Vanguard shot the Pathfinders to hell, taking out half of them and forcing them to retreat. My Rangers wrecked a Devilfish by glancing it to death with their haywire arc rifles, but as it is a dedicated transport it didn't count as First Blood. Not that it mattered. My Ironstrider Ballistarius fired at the Broadsides, but they made their cover save. I should really think about replacing him with a squad of Sydonian Dragoons instead. I'm enjoying my assault, particularly my Sicarians, who have turned out to be a delightful surprise. I wonder if I should swap out one Onager Dunecrawler so that I can fit in 4 Sydonian Dragoons...but as this game proved, the 4+ invulnerable save is invaluable.

Anyway, my Sicarian Ruststalkers ran because they weren't in range of anyone. My Sicarian Infiltrators inflicted heavy losses on the 2nd Fire Warrior squad that had disembarked from the Devilfish, wiping out 5 of them with their flechette blasters. Even with 4 of them I had 20 shots, and despite being only S2 AP-, Shred really helped them shred the poor Fire Warriors. Thankfully the blue campers passed their morale check and remained where they were so that I could charge them in my next turn.

My Onager Dunecrawlers fired 3 neutron laser shots, all were a direct hit. Awesome! But...BUT! BUT!!!! But my opponent's damned Crisis Commander, who had a shield generator (meaning 4+ saves), tanked the 9 wounds all by himself. He made 8 freaking saves, rolling 4s, 5s and 6s 8 times before finally succumbing to the last shot. Meaning those 2 dangerous Broadsides were still in play. After barely surviving an explodes! result from a penetrating hit, I was worried.

I think people have underestimated the Sicarians way too much. They are tough, difficult to kill if you don't have S6 AP4 weapons that can cause instant death, and very fast and deadly both in melee and shooting. Well, the Ruststalkers' meager 8" Mindscrambler grenades might suck but I'm sure they'll wreak havoc on vehicles and monstrous creatures if given the chance. It's just too bad my opponent only had one Devilfish so far away. They really have been an awesome delight, my Ruststalkers standing toe-to-toe with a superior Thunderwolves Calvary and dealing damage to them, and my Infiltrators just ripping things apart with their flechette blasters and taser goads.

Turn 2

My opponent tried to take out my Ironstrider Ballistarius with his Broadsides, but as per last turn, he only had one hit out of two twin-linked shots, and he...rolled a one. So the poor guy didn't even manage to wound my Ironstrider Ballistarius.

The Fire Warriors and Stealth team fired at my Sicarian Infiltrators and Sicarian Ruststalkers. Needless to say, a combination of 4+ armor save and 5+ Feel No Pain (plus a lucky miss from the Stealth battlesuit's fusion blaster) meant that I only lost one Ruststalker, and my four Infiltrators escaped with only one wound. I saw criticism on the Internet, particularly by the famous Abusepuppy (I think it's him, sorry if it's not you, Abusepuppy! I know how respected you are in the community), about the 2 wounds being useless on a T3 model, but when I see things like this I kind of understand now that it really depends on the enemy and how I use them. Against a horde army with S5 and below weapons, the multiple wounds and Feel No Pain really makes a difference regardless of T3.

He failed his Deep Strike, by the way, so his Commander never got to come in.

My retaliation was brutal. In one turn I almost wiped out his entire army. My Vanguard mercilessly butchered his 10 Fire Warriors with their 30 radium carbine shots with Rad Poisoning, dealing a total of 21 wounds (I think there were about a few sixes that dealt double wounds). He rolled his cover or armor saves (both 4+, so no difference) and took 10 wounds. That meant 10 dead Fire Warriors, and the whole squad was wiped out. My Ironstrider shot the remaining Pathfinders and killed one of them, leaving 2 of them.

On the other side of the table, my Onager Dunecrawlers fired their neutron lasers and finally - FINALLY! - disintegrated the 2 annoying Broadsides with their dangerous heavy railguns. Phew. They even made 4 saves out of 6, thank the Omnissiah for Instant Death from S10 weapon. My Rangers continued to pepper the Fire Warriors and only killed 2 of them, leaving just 3 (they made quite a lot of saves).

Now comes the hilarious part. My Sicarian Infiltrators were getting ready to charge the Stealth team as they had 2+ cover saves and I was thinking there was no way they would die. So I unloaded 20 burst pistol flechette blaster shots into them and...well...inflicted 5 wounds in the end. So my opponent rolled his 2+ cover saves and...he rolled 3 ones. Yes, 3 ones. Meaning all 3 Stealth battlesuits were killed by S2 AP- flechette blasters.

His luck was so bad I actually felt sorry for him. I know how it felt because I had a similar roll during the Dark Angels game. Sigh. Hilariously enough, this meant that neither my Sicarian Ruststalkers nor my Sicarian Infiltrators had anyone to charge at because their targets were eliminated. It was my Ironstrider Ballistarius who did the charging, assaulting the 2 remaining Pathfinders who missed their Photon grenade. Stupidly enough, I missed all 3 attacks with his poor WS3, BUT I killed 1 with my Hammer of Wrath (Ironstrider Ballistrius is a walker, remember?). Phew. With no way of harming an AV11 walker, the last surviving Pathfinder threw down his pulse carbine and Markerlights, claiming that "our weapons are useless!" and fled...only to run off the table and leaving just 3 Fire Warriors behind.

Ouch. That was so brutal I felt pretty bad.

Turn 3

My opponent's Crisis team finally succeeded in Deep Striking behind my Onager Dunecrawlers. As always, his Fire Warriors failed to wound my Infiltrators, but his Crisis team had more luck. The fusion blaster scored a penetrating hit, I failed my invulnerable save, and he rolled a 1 (wow, his dice rolls are really bad). Fortunately, AP1 meant a 3 on the vehicle damage chart and one of my Onager Dunecrawlers was now immobilized. He then jump-jeted his Crisis suits away.

I had all my units converge on the Crisis team, with the exception of my Rangers who moved into the building where the happy blue Tau Fire Warriors were camping. A brief firefight erupted, and 3 Fire Warriors bit the dust. Oh well. I did have 5 Rangers after all. The 2 neutron lasers missed, the 3rd Dunecrawler being unable to pivot and fire behind, but I did catch 2 drones, which promptly blew up under the S10 AP1 attack. I continued heckling the beleaguered Crisis team with my Infiltrators, shredding another 2 Drones to death with flechette blasters before charging them. However, as they were placed in a narrow alleyway, only my Infiltrator Princeps could actually reach them, so it was a one-on-one duel where my Princeps took the Crisis battlesuit apart with frightening ease without suffering even a wound.

Yeah, Tau really suck in close combat. Hah!

Unfortunately, the 2 surviving Tau Crisis suits made use of their Hit and Run! to jump-jet out of combat and run away.

Turn 4

And so my units continued to close in, after my opponent fired his fusion blasters again and took 3 hull points off (I think one penetrating hit) my Onager Dunecrawlers - only for me to roll 3 saves - 2 fives and a six. Man, he was really having a bad day to the point where I just felt for him. If I were in his shoes, I would absolutely be cursing the Greater Good for giving me such poor dice rolls. As for me, I should probably convert to Cult Mechanicus and begin constructing shrines in praise of the Omnissiah.

Though I'll only do that if I beat the Dark Angels in my next game against them. Ha ha.

Anyway, I retaliated, and he was forced to Go to Ground. He made a 6+ cover save against my Ironstrider Ballistarius, and I then fired 2 neutron lasers at him. Needless to say, he wasn't able to roll 3 sixes, and both his crisis battlesuits were Instant Death-ed.

And so the game ended, with my opponent being completely tabled and me losing only 2 Sicarian Ruststalkers and a single Sicarian Infiltrator. It was so one-sided I couldn't help but feel bad.


I don't think this happened because the Skitarii are overpowered or anything. In any case, my battles against the Space Wolves and Dark Angels have proven that they can be beaten. I think my opponent just isn't used to using his Tau yet (he had just only recenly started, like me), and made some poor decisions or something. Add to that his incredibly bad luck and terrible rolls, and he got tabled. I mean, seriously?! It has to be the worst luck ever to roll 3 ones out of 5 when all he needed was a 2+ cover save!

Unfortunately, even if his rolling had been better, I still can't say the game would end in his favor. After all, I had my Infiltrators ready to charge him, and if my Ironstrider had been wrecked by his Broadsides, my Ruststalkers would have charged and killed the Pathfinders instead.

It's also how he built his list. Maybe he has too little Broadsides, or perhaps he would have been better off using the Farsight Enclaves supplement, given how he was so proficient in using Crisis battlesuits. In fact, his Crisis battlesuits did the most damage, and were the most versatile units while his Fire Warriors...sad to say, were cannon fodder.

Anyway, the both of us will carry on playing no matter how devastating our defeats are! We will never give up! I'm still raring to go and eager to challenge the Dark Angels again, and I want a rematch with the Tyranid player with 4 flying Hive Tyrants! I also don't mind playing against the Space Wolves again, that would be fun.

For the Omnissiah!

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