Region: Damocles Sector.
Death Guard vs Tau Empire.
1000pts / PL 50.
Mission: Bunker Assault - Fire and Fury.
Deployment: Dawn of War.
The Tau fleet arrives into the Fandrel system and is dismayed to find the worlds of the system already swarming with the servants of the plague god. Desperate to seize these worlds for their mineral wealth the Tau swiftly move in to the main world and engage the Death Guard ships in a mighty void war.
Meanwhile, the Tau commanders dispatch a force to strike at the command structure of the enemy. Secretly deployed to the surface they make their way to the Death Guard fortress with orders to bring it down.
Challenged Adam to an 8th edition game with his Tau. Adam hasn't had a lot of luck with his Tau and he's having trouble adapting to how they now play. I suggested he pick a mission from my list and he chose Bunker Assault. But surprisingly he chose to go with the Fire and Fury battle zone. I was rather surprised he did so as most of what I expected him to take has the Fly keyword and thus potentially risking mortal wounds any time they move, and if they stay put bits of space debris could easily fall upon them. It was going to be an interesting game. We are also playing 50 power levels although as the attacker needs more than me, Adam had 60 Power.
I had to set up first with my mission specific fortress first and then what few units I got with the power levels. I could have been a complete asshat and deploy the fortress behind ruins where he couldn't see it but I'm too nice. Before the game started proper, Adam was able to move/redeploy his ghostkeel to a point half way between his lines and mine. It would prove to be a pain in the backside all game.
First turn and Adam didn't really need to do a lot. He managed to drop starship debris onto both my fortress and one of the plague marine squads. The ghostkeel dropping two more from a second squad. His other shooting was very good but the falling debris did the job.
My turn one and I moved the cultists forward. Initially my play was to get them closer to his fire warriors and draw their fire away from the plague marines who were just within range. Didn't work out quite so well. I was also very reluctant to move my plague marines forward out of fear of the ghostkeel. Instead Typhus just dropped a psychic miasma about to preventing Adam's forces from hitting them as easily. My bolters did very little in return. My debris was not as accurate this turn but it dropped a few models.
Turn two and Adam gunned down most of my cultists. That was their use but I felt that I could have done better with them in hindsight. Adam continued to pour fire into my fortress but the dice were not with him. He could hit just couldn't wound it. He was relying on the debris I think which was doing the job for him.
My turn two and I changed tact. The remaining cultists moved to try and get closer to the ghostkeel. My idea now was to hopefully get them into combat with it and tie it down for a turn, just to reduce the incoming fire. I started to move up my plague marines and I was able to get Typhus to knock a couple mortal wounds off the ghostkeel with smite.
Turn three for both of us went really quickly for both of us. I had kept most of what I had left just out of range of his fire warriors and Adam's tanks were more interesting in shooting the fortress. The fortress was surviving and I was holding out hope that victory would be mine. I lost the remaining cultists due to overwatch. Adam's dice suddenly working when I didn't want them to. But I was able to inflict massive damage to the ghostkeel with a meltagun.
The game went downhill from there. I was able to drop the ghostkeel but Adam's hammerhead tanks both managed to just rip the last few wounds from the fortress which promptly collapsed into dust and twisted metal. I conceded here. There was no way in a turn that I could grab another e victory points and secure a draw. If only his bad dice rolls had continued I would have secured a nice victory.
So, unless the Fire and Fury battlezone game I had against Joel's tyranids last week, the falling debris actually worked this time with both of us taking damage and casualties. I was disappointed by the fortress which really needed an invulnerable save and better than a 5+ automated fire. Perhaps if you could a unit in the fortress fire the weapons on their Ballistic Skill it would have been worthwhile. I made a few mistakes, including one mission benefit, but Adam did well and it was a fun game.
My list, not including the fortress (15 PL) was:
++ Patrol Detachment (Chaos - Death Guard) [33 PL, 572pts] ++
Typhus [9 PL, 164pts]
Chaos Cultists [6 PL, 84pts]
2 units of Plague Marines [9 PL, 167pts]
++ Total: [33 PL, 572pts] ++