Saturday, August 14, 2010

AstroPeg 2010 Day Two: Game Six - Temple of Doom

Overview: It's one of those days. You know the ones. Where you're ordered to an area and even your commanders won't tell you what's going on until you get there. What the heck is that Inquisitor doing on that temple? How does it affect your own goals? What are the enemy forces who showed up trying to accomplish? There's no way to know. You just have to do your best to achieve your own objectives and see if you can throw a wrench into the enemy’s plans along the way.

The sixth and final game was against CharlesJ and his Daemon Hunters:
- Grand Master, in Terminator Armour, w/ Icon of the Just, Sacred Incense and Hammerhand
- Retinue of 4 x Grey Knight Terminators w/ Incinerator, all riding in a Land Raider
- 5 x Grey Knights, w/ Psycannon
- 5 x Grey Knights, w/ Psycannon
- 5 x Grey Knight Terminators, w/ Incinerator
- Ordo Malleus Inquisitor
- Callidus Assassin
- Dreadnought, w/ TL Lascannon and Missile Launcher

Objective: Your mission objective is selected randomly and is hidden from your opponent until the end of the game unless revealed.

In the centre of the table was a temple, protected by an energy field. Inside it, Inquisitor Lord Edvardus Heft and his retinue were performing a ritual in the temple and would not leave until it had been completed. They would defend the temple against all who ventured too near.

Players drew, randomly and secretly, one of four missions:
  1. Protect the Inquisitor! - If the Inquisitor is in the Temple at the end of the game you have achieved your objective.
  2. Kill the Inquisitor! - If the Inquisitor is dead at the end of the game and you have moved a HQ model into base contact with the prisoner you have achieved your objective.
  3. Control the Area! - If you control more table quarters than the enemy at the end of the game, you have achieved your objective.
  4. The Assassins - If you eliminate the enemy commander you have achieved your objective.
Each objective also allowed certain advantages if they were revealed. However, you would gain +2 Battle Points if you did not reveal your mission until the game is over, and +1 BP if you revealed your mission during play. This is a very interesting scenario. The different missions require vastly different tactics to complete. Part of one's apprach might be to try and bluff the other player into thinking your mission was different than the one actually drawn.

I drew the mission The Assassins. So, nothing else mattered but killing the Grand Master. Not the third-party Inquisitor, not Eldar losses, nor the enemy’s.

I lost the initial roll and set up the Night Spinner behind the temple. Charles set up everything but the 5 Terminators and the Assassin. Below, Charles can be seen scrutinizing the scenario rules:


From west to east Charles set up a Grey Knights squad, the Land Raider with the Grand Master and his retinue embarked aboard, the Dreadnought walker, the other Grey Knights squad, and the Ordo Malleus Inquisitor:


Charles started by moving forward and shooting at Inquisitor Lord Edvardus Heft and his retinue. Charles' mission was most likely Kill the Inquisitor!, but he chose not to reveal his objective at this time.

Meanwhile, the Night Spinner pot shotted targets of opportunity throughout the game.

The Eldar rolled well for reserves (thanks to the Autarch's Master Strategist ability) and received everything except one Fire Dragon Wave Serpent. The Vypers came on to the southwest to shoot at heavy infantry. Two Wave Serpents came on in the centre, with their rears protected by the Warp Spiders, to prevent Deep Strikers from shooting at the vulnerable rear armour; the Dragon Serpent moved Flat Out, garnering a cover save, and it capstoned the other Serpent and the Night Spinner with its hull. The Bright Lance Serpent came on to the east, its rear protected by the Farseer/Autarch duo.

Given no obvious soft targets, the Terminators entered via Deep Strike in the northwest table quarter, supporting one of the Grey Knights squads.


Grey Knight shooting and the Callidus Assassin cleared out the temple. If Charles' mission was as I expected, the Eldar had to prevent the Grand Master from getting into the Temple, preferably by killing him.


The second Dragon Serpent came in from reserves, moving Flat Out beside the temple. The Missile Launcher Serpent moved up in echelon beside it, shielded by its hull from the bulk of Daemon Hunter return fire. The other Dragon Serpent moved Flat Out right up to the Land Raider, hemming it in and setting up the disembarkation of its Dragons next turn. The Vypers moved north slightly, targeting the Terminators. The Bright Lance Serpent moved north, to the east of the temple. The Spiders and the Eldar HQs moved up to the energy field, targeting the Callidus Assassin.

Eldar fire killed the Callidus Assassin and most of the Terminators.


The Dreadnought blew up the Bright Lance Serpent, leaving a single Dire Avenger alive in the wreckage. His morale held, and he vowed revenge...


The northernmost Dragon squad disembarked and moved up to the Land Raider, then their Wave Serpent moved slightly west; the other Dragon Serpent moved up in support. The Warp Spiders, Farseer and Autarch moved into the temple. The lone Avenger ran northwest.

The Terminator and Grey Knights to the west were killed by massed skimmer fire. The dismounted Dragons blew up the Land Raider with point blank melta fire.


The Grand Master and his retinue killed the dismounted Dragons in a hail of bolter shells.


The Eldar skimmers converged and the other Dire Avenger squad dismounted. Massed Eldar fire wiped out the Grand Master, his retinue, and the rest of the Grey Knights. The solo Dire Avenger killed the Ordo Malleus Inquisitor with a burst from his Shuriken Catapult. The Eldar HQs moved up to attack the Dreadnought, sensing an opportunity to completely table the Daemon Hunters, but the walker survived, albeit damaged.

The Eldar had fulfilled their objective. Charles revealed his mission, to kill Inquisitor Lord Heft, so the Daemon Hunters' objective had been met, too. By this revelation, Charles was also no longer required to have an HQ in contact with the prisoner in the temple. However, this would cost him a Battle Point.

In the last action of the game, the Dreadnought knocked out the Farseer, exacting some measure of payback.


Result: Draw

For the draw, I gained 7 Battle Points. By not revealing my mission during the game, I gained +2 Battle Points, for 9 BPs total. Toward the end of the game, I made yet another error. If I had re-read the secondary objectives (as I should have!), I would have realized that I could have gained another BP for having a unit in the temple. The obvious unit would have been the Farseer, who could still have provided Doom support to the rest of her forces. As MikeM says, always re-read the scenario around turn 3 or 4.

This was an event-filled game, whose outcome was not clear until close to the end. Game MVP should be shared between the sole Daemon Hunter survivor, the Dreadnought, and the last member of the Blood Redeemers - surely Exarch material for the Dire Avenger Shrine.


With a W-L-D record of 3-1-2, I was unsure of where I stood on the leader-board. Several door prizes, including Forge World items, were drawn for. IIRC, MikeK won more than one door prize in the silent auction. In due course the results were announced, which I posted here.

Below is a photo of the tournament organizers, KeithG, MikeM, and ChristianA:


Below is a photo of the winners and the TOs (in front, Mike; kneeling, myself and MarioR; standing L-R, KevinN, GraemeB, MikeK, DaveG, BrockJ, DaveS, Keith and Christian):


After the tournament, several of us went to Boston Pizza for fellowship and good eats.

Again at an Astro event I had a lot of fun playing six interesting games against some great players. I look forward to attending again in the future.


Administratum said...

Great Batreps, Dave. Makes me long for a rematch. Someday :)

DaveV said...

Chris, a rematch would be awesome. It's been far too long. It would be ironic if we faced each other in Las Vegas.