GSC at Bristol Team Tournament Report: Game 2- Blood Angels

Game 2 at a recent team tournament saw my GSC take on the Blood Angels, newly boosted by Armour of Contempt. For more reviews and analyses, check out the Tactics Corner.

I recently attended a team tournament with my GSC. Team events are a really fun way to play 40k and add a new dynamic to the game, with tactical pairings.

We won our first round game, so my second round saw us going up against Ben’s Blood Angels force. These guys are now scaring with Armour of Contempt, reducing the AP of my attacks and hurting the main focus of my army, close combat. The second game was Conversion.

My army consisted of:

Battalion Detachment (Twisted Helix)

Patriarch- WARLORD, Prowling Agitant (Trait), Elixir of the Prime Specimen; Enhanced Resilience (Relic), Might from Beyond, Mass Hypnosis, Mutagenic Deviation

Magus- Familiar, Might from Beyond, Psychic Stimulus, Mutagenic Deviation

10 Acolyte Hybrids- 4 Heavy Rock Drills, A Trap Sprung

10 Acolyte Hybrids- 4 Heavy Rock Drills

5 Acolyte Hybrids- Lying in Wait, 5 Hand Flamers

5 Acolyte Hybrids- 5 Hand Flamers

5 Acolyte Hybrids

5 Acolyte Hybrids- From Every Angle

Kelermorph- A Perfect Ambush

Nexos- Cranial Inlay (Relic)

10 Purestrain Genestealers- They Came From Below

10 Purestrain Genestealers- Our Time is Nigh

10 Purestreain Genestealers

4 Atalan Jackals- 1 Demolition Charge

4 Atalan Jackals- 1 Demolition Charge

Goliath Truck

Goliath Truck

Patrol Detachment (Twisted Helix)

Magus- Familiar, Mass Hypnosis, Mind Control, Mutagenic Deviation, The Unwilling Orb

10 Neophyte Hybrids- Shotguns

10 Neophyte Hybrids

5 Acolyte Hybrids

10 Hybrid Metamorphs

Ben’s army consisted of:

Battalion Detachment (Blood Angels)

Commander Dante- Warlord, Heroic Bearing

Primaris Techmarine- Rites of War

Sanguinary Priest- Chief Apothecary, Selfless Healer, Jump Pack, The Armour Indomitus

5 Assault Intercessors

5 Incursors

5 Incursors

5 Bladeguard Veterans- Quake Bolts

Redemptor Dreadnaught- 2 Storm Bolters, Macro Plasma Incinerator, Onslaught Gatling Cannon, Icarus Rocket Pod

Redemptor Dreadnaught- 2 Storm Bolters, Macro Plasma Incinerator, Onslaught Gatling Cannon, Icarus Rocket Pod

5 Sanguinary Guard- Encarmine Swords

5 Sanguinary Guard- Encarmine Axes

5 Inceptors- Plasma Incinerators

Impulsor- 2 Storm Bolters

A mobile Blood Angels force with a lot of combat punch thanks to the Sanguinary Guard and Bladeguard. The Redemptors would also be a bit tougher to take out with my force and had lots of small arms firepower to give my squads something to think about.

The second mission was Conversion. I hate the table quarters deployment, as it neuters my two preferred secondary picks; Deploy Teleport Homers and Behind Enemy Lines. A savvy opponent can block me out of his zone if I choose these, so had to go for something different.

For secondaries, I chose Retrieve Nachmund Data, Stranglehold and Psychic Interrogation. Ben chose Oath of Moments, Retrieve Nachmund Data and Assassinate.

Ben deployed his forces. He put the Incursor units on an objective on each flank. The Assault Intercessors held his backfield objective, along with Dante and the Techmarine. The two Redemptors went behind the ruins in the centre, with the Impulsor beside them. The Sanguinary Guard went on either flank, supported by the Priest on one side. I deployed my blips across the deployment zone.

I won the roll off for first turn.

TURN 1

I deployed my forces. The Atalan Jackals scout moved up towards the objectives. I put one unit of Genestealers on each flank, ready to move up and deal with the Incursors. The Truck moved towards the centre, shielding the Patriarch who moved up to get into range for Psychic Interrogation. The Magus, Nexos and Neophytes held my backfield. I brought in a 5-man Acolyte squad to get RND. There was little shooting. The Jackals threw their demo charges at the Incursors, killing a couple in each squad.

In the charge phase, the Jackals and Genestealers charged the Incursors on each flank. I used a stratagem to make one unit fight last. Both squads were wiped out and I used a stratagem to put one squad of Stealers into reserve. At the end of the turn, I scored Psychic Interrogation and Stranglehold and got the first RND, as well as 2 primary points.

Ben sent the Sanguinary guard after the objectives on each flank. The Impulsor moved to grab the middle objective, while the Redemptors moved to get line of sight. Shooting whittled down the Genestealer squad on the left, and took out a few Acolytes on the left. The Redemptor failed to kill the Truck after some poor rolling. The other Redemptor was able to wipe out the Jackals on the left.

In the charge phase, the Sanguinary Guard and Priest assaulted the Jackals and Truck on the right, while the other squad assaulted the remaining Genestealers on the left. The Stealers were wiped out, but the Jackals and truck managed to survive combat against the Sanguinary guard on the other flank.

At the end of his turn, Ben scored 3 pts for Oaths, got one RND and 2 pts on the primary. A very close run score going into turn 2.

TURN 2

I scored only 4 pts on the primary for holding one objective. The Patriarch and Hybrid Metamorphs moved up on the Sanguinary Guard on the right, while the Truck moved to contest the central objective. The two remaining Acolytes moved up on the objective on the left, while I stayed in combat with the Jackals, but fell back with the Truck. I deployed the Acolytes with Drills to take on the other Sanguinary Guard unit. My other reserves came in. I used the Lying in Wait Acolytes to snatch Ben’s home objective from him, and brought a unit of Genestealers in to charge his backfield.

In the psychic phase, I got Psychic Interrogation and boosted some of the squads about to go into combat. Shooting did little again.

In the charge phase, the Patriarch and Hybrid Metamorphs charged the Sanguinary Guard. The Truck charged the Impulsor. The Acolyte Hybrids charged the other Sanguinary Guard, but the Purestrain Genestealers failed a charged on the Techmarine.

I once again used the stratagem to make one of the Sanguinary Guard fight last. The Hybrid Metamorphs killed one squad of Sanguinary Guard. However, the Acolytes were only able to take the other squad down to 2 models after some great FNP rolls from the Priest. The attacks back killed four of the Acolytes.

At the end of my turn, I scored 6 pts on the Primary, Stranglehold, Psychic Interrogation and got my second RND point.

In his turn, Ben scored no primary points. Dante and the Assault Intercessors moved round the ruins to target the Hybrid Metamorphs. One Redemptor moved to engage the Purestrain Genestealers, while the other moved up on the Goliath Truck in the centre. The Bladeguard disembarked, moving up towards my backfield. The Sanguinary Guard and Priest fell back from combat, while the Inceptors landed near them.

The shooting phase saw the Purestrains take a beating from the Redemptor, and the Hybrid Metamorphs were gunned down by the other Redemptor. Dante took at shot at the Patriarch, but luckily my invulnerable save blocked the melta pistol shot. I used the stratagem to stop the Inceptors from being able to shoot at the two-man Acolyte squad, so their firepower dealt with the other squad of Acolytes and the remaining Jackals.

In the charge phase, the Techmarine and Redemptor charged the Acolytes on the Blood Angels’ home objective. The Bladeguard Veterans charged the Neophyte Hybrids on my objective. The other Redemptor charged the Goliath Truck. Dante tried to charge the Patriarch, but I used my Prowling Agitant move to retreat to safety, giving up the objective in the process.

The Bladeguard wiped out the Neophytes with ease. The Redemptor and Techmarine dealt with the Acolyte Hybrids on the objective. The Redemptor failed to kill the Goliath Truck after a poor roll.

At the end of the turn, Ben scored 4 pts for holding my backfield objective and 3 pts for Oaths.

GSC- 28 pts, Blood Angels- 12 pts. A decent lead at the end of turn 2, but I had lost a lot of heavy hitters and Ben still had a number of units left.

TURN 3

In my third turn, I scored 8 pts on the Primary. The Patriarch fell back towards my home lines, as the Neophytes moved up. The Magus and Nexos fell back from combat with the Bladeguard Veterans. The Purestrains moved up on the Techmarine. The rest of my reserves came in. I put a unit of Acolyte Hybrids in my backfield to protect my characters. The last unit of Purestrains in reserve came in to engage the Sanguinary Guard and Priest on the left. Another unit of Acolytes moved to secure the right hand objective and do RND. The other unit of Drill Acolytes came on to charge the Techmarine and Redemptor. The last of the 5-man Acolytes landed near the Patriarch to shield him, supported by the Kelermorph.

I got psychic Interrogation off on the Priest. Smite killed one of the Bladeguard Veterans. The Kelermorph was able to kill two more with his pistol shots. The Flamers of the two Acolyte Squads were unable to do any damage thanks to their 2+ armour saves.

In the charge phase, the Purestrains on one flank charged the Techmarine, while the squad on the other flank charged the Sanguinary Guard and Priest. The Patriarch and Neophytes charged the Bladeguard Veterans. The Acolyte Hybrids failed their charge on the Techmarine and Redemptor.

The Patriarch was able to kill off the Bladeguard. The Purestrains killed the Sanguinary Guard and Priest, but the other squad were unable to take out the Techmarine. The Redemptor killed the Goliath Truck.

At the end of my turn, I got a third RND and psychic interrogation, as well as stranglehold and 2 more primary points.

In Ben’s turn, he also got 8 primary points. Dante moved up on the Acolytes holding the objective beside him, the Assault Intercessors moving up to support. The Redemptor in the backfield moved up on the Acolytes, while the other Redemptor moved up on my backfield lines. The Inceptors moved to engage the Purestrains, performing RND and using the stratagem to still allow them to shoot.

The Inceptors fired at the Purestrain and Jackals, killing all but two of the Purestrains and a Jackal. The Redemptor was able to kill a number of Acolytes in the backfield, and the other Redemptor was able to kill the second Truck.

In the charge phase, the Redemptor and Dante charge the two Acolyte squads beside them, easily wiping them out. The other Redemptor failed a charge on the Patriarch. The Purestrains failed to kill the Techmarine, losing one of the squad in reply.

At the end of his turn, Ben score Oaths for 4 pts and got his second RND, as well as 2 pts on the primary.

GSC- 48 pts, Blood Angels- 30 pts. I still had a strong lead, but was rapidly running out of units.

TURN 4

I only got 4 pts this turn for holding one objective. The Patriarch and Kelermorph moved back towards the cover of my backfield. The Acolytes moved up on the central objective, while the Purestrains fell back from combat towards the centre. The last Purestrain and two Jackals decided to hold the objective on the left. I used a CP to put another unit of Acolytes back into reserve.

I got psychic interrogation once more, against Dante this time. Shooting had little effect.

In the charge phase, the Acolytes assaulted the Impulsor to grab the central objective. The Purestrains did not charged the Inceptors, as I currently had enough to control the objective they were on. If I lost any, I would lose stranglehold.

At the end of my turn, I scored Psychic Interrogation and stranglehold once more. I did not get my last RND this turn.

In his turn, Ben scored 8 pts on the primary. The Inceptors and Redemptor moved up on my backfield. The Impulsor fell back from combat, while the other Redemptor moved to target my forces. The Assault Intercessors moved onto the objective, and started the third RND.

The shooting phase saw the Patriarch, Acolytes, Nexos, Genestealers and Kelermorph fall. The firepower for the Inceptors and Redemptors proved to be too much for my diminished forces.

At the end of his turn, Ben scored 10 pts on Assassinate and four points on Oaths, and 2 pts on the primary.

GSC- 60 pts, Blood Angels- 58 pts. At the end of turn 4, I still had a narrow lead, but it was likely to fall apart in my final turn, as I only had a handful of models left.

TURN 5

I was probably going to lose, but tried to score as many pts as possible. I scored 4 pts on the primary. I moved the two Magus to control my home objective. The squad of Acolytes in reserve moved into the last section to get RND. In the psychic phase, I got Psychic Interrogation off on Dante. That ended a very quick turn.

Ben’s turn was all about clearing up. He moved onto the objectives he was not currently holding and his firepower took care of my two remaining Magus.

At the end of turn 5, the score was 96-83 to the Blood Angels.

AFTER-BATTLE THOUGHTS

Thanks to Ben for a great game, he played it really well. I think I had a very strong chance of winning this game, but my fragile force fell apart in the final turns of the game to give Ben the victory.

In hindsight, I would have been better playing for the central objective more. Had I sent a squad of Acolytes after the Impulsor in the middle, I may have been able to block the Bladeguard from going after my home objective. This might have kept my characters safe to deny those Assassinate points.

My plan on turn 1 was to go after the Incursors on the flanks for getting Stranglehold. I didn’t want to grab the central objective to stop getting getting a charge on turn 1 with the two squads of Sanguinary Guard in the centre. From there, he could have easily pushed towards my homebase and taken out the characters earlier. As it was, one of my Genestealer units was wiped out after only having killed a squad of Incursors.

Perhaps, I should have pushed a Truck or unit of Jackals into the central objective and kept the other unit of Purestrains in the safety of the Truck to counter punch whoever went after the centre. This would still have given me points for Stranglehold, but without the loss of a valuable Purestrain squad.

Going second in this game might have worked better in my favour too. Most of my army could be well hidden on turn 1, meaning the firepower of the Redemptors would not be too worrying. Then I could have seen where Ben committed his forces and go after them.

This game also showed the flipside of the GSC, as I failed a number of charges from reserve that helped cost me the game as well. Had the Purestrains made the charge against the Techmarine, I would have likely killed him with a full-strength squad and got rid of Rites of War to give him objective secured. This would have helped down the line in the objective game. Equally, had the Acolytes made their charge on the Redemptor, they would have been able to do a lot of damage to it and maybe spare me some of its awesome firepower for the rest of the game.

I decided to ignore the Redemptors, as I would need to commit a lot of resources to kill them. I think this was a mistake, as the firepower of the Redemptors really hurt my forces. Even though I didn’t have to fear the Macro Plasma Incinerator so much, the small arms fire the Dreadnoughts can put out was punishing for my small squads. The combination of Onslaught Gatling Cannon, Storm Bolters and Icarus launchers meant the Redemptors were easily ripping apart my units with ease. I could potentially gone after them with the Purestrain Genestealers on turn 1. Buffed by psychic powers and stratagems, they might have been able to kill one or both of them and get them off my back for the rest of the game.

Armour of Contempt was pretty strong for the Sanguinary Guard, meaning they were getting a 3+ save against my Acolytes. I needed to use the Genestealers and Hybrid Metamorphs to deal with them in combat.

Even though I lost my game, the team still won the round after the other members managed to get big wins. The close loss meant the opposing team didn’t get a lot of points for the win, which can sometimes be just as important in a team event. Two team wins in a row meant we would likely be facing some tough forces in the next game.

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About Michael Corr

An avid 40k player and blogger from Scotland. I started in 3rd edition and have been playing ever since. I detail my adventures in my own blog "St Andrews Wargaming", highlighting my mediocre painting skills, regular battle reports and my occasional random ramblings.
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