Overview: It has been decided that the high ground is of great tactical importance for the outcome of the campaign. Your mission is to occupy the high ground and the surrounding area.
The game was against ChrisB and elements of the Tyranid Hive Fleet Colossus:
- Hive Tyrant with Tyrant Guard
- Tyranid Prime leading 5 Warriors
- 3 Zoenthropes
- 10 Genestealers
- 30 Gargoyles
- 30 Termagaunts
- Mycetic Spore
Objective: You must hold more Table Quarters than your opponent at the end of the game to win. The hill in the centre of the table counts as a Table Quarter.
Again, Night Fighting was in effect for the entire game. Too bad the Eldar, who used to move stars and planets, did not retain the seemingly rare "searchlight" technology. I wouldn't be able to rely on the Eldar skimmers' medium- and long-range firepower. The plan for the Eldar would be to try and draw the Tyranids into short range firefights, avoid getting bogged down in close combat, and try and contest all but one table quarter late game.
I won the initial die roll, and decided to go second.
Setup was in opposite table quarters. Chris set up the Termagaunts in the ruins to the northwest, controlling that quarter. The Gargoyles and Carnifex hunkered down behind the hill. The Spore came down to the northeast of the hill, and the Zoenthropes got out. The Tyrant and its Guard followed the Warriors, running onto the hill proper. The Genestealers were held in reserve.
I deployed the Night Spinner in the southeast corner, which shot at the Zoenthropes in the dark.
The Eldar rolled well for reserves. In the photo below, the Vypers have moved flat out, gaining a cover save and providing some cover to the skimmer wall behind them. To the west of the line, both Fire Dragon squads dismounted and killed off most of the Warriors. Using her second move, the Autarch interposed herself between the bugs and the dismounted Dragons.
The Autarch was bait - but would the bugs bite?
The bugs indeed bit. The Tyrant moved up and shot away one squad of Dragons, cover notwithstanding. The Warriors plowed into the Autarch, who bravely faced her impending doom.
In the photo below, the Vypers have moved back, which was a mistake - they failed to see anything in the dark. The remaining Dragons mounted up, safe for now behind wraithbone tank armour. Meanwhile, the Farseer and Warp Spiders showed up to play. The Autarch finally succumbed to the Warriors' talons.
The Genestealers came on in the southwest table quarter, covered by some woods. The Tyrant shot at and killed most of the Spiders.
One Serpent full of Avengers moved Flat Out to the northeast. A couple of other Serpents moved west. The surviving Dragons dismounted, shot away the Tyrant Guard and wounded the Tyrant. The Night Spinner targeted the Gargoyles, killing several of their number and breaking them. Everything else that could fire opened up on the Warriors and the Zoenthropes, and gunned both units down.
The Gargoyles fled off the table to the north. The Genestealers advanced on the run and tore apart the Fire Dragons. The empty Serpent at the bottom of the photo was brought down by Tyranid fire.
In response, one Serpent moved Flat Out into the northwest quarter, contesting it. The Termagaunts had nothing to take it down. In the centre, a Serpent moved onto the hill, contesting it. To the northeast, the Avengers dismounted and destroyed the Spore with their Shuriken Catapults.
The Tyrant had been reduced to only one wound. With Runes of Warding on the table, Chris was loathe to use a psychic power because of the threat of Perils of the Warp. He moved the Tyrant and the Carnifex to the northwest corner of the hill, shielding them from the Vypers' fire.
As the game wound down, the dismounted Avengers' Wave Serpent moved into the northwest quarter. The Avengers moved northeast, behind a hill.
When the game ended the Eldar controlled the northeast table quarter with the dismounted Dire Avengers; every other quarter, including the hill, was contested.
Result: Eldar Win
This was a hard-fought battle. The Eldar benefited from some lucky rolls - especially the loss of the Gargoyles, the Tyranids' fastest-moving unit. Chris admitted afterward that the Tyranids could have stayed back, and forced the Eldar to come forward to engage.
The first day ended with me having played three fun games. With one tie and no losses, I would probably be playing DaveS the next morning.
Please click here for the second day and Game Four - X-Factor.