The rise of albion- a 40k campaign

Me and a good friend, Lee have talked about a campaign for ages and we are finally getting around to it. Fought between his imperial guard and my skitarii force, our aim is for 6 games culminating at a 10k game at warhammer world. 

Game 1 is a small 500pts game, then each game escalates.  The winner of each came can stipulate the following game. It’s collaborative process with the game more important than the winner.

The plot of our story is a simple one. The once prosperous agricultural world of albion has hit hard times. A calamity damaged a lot of the farm land making it inhospitable.  The ‘dead zone’ has something living in it. The once loyal guard regiment has found a new ally to help the world survive.

Who are they? Did they cause the calamity? Why is the inquisition suddenly intersted? 

Also on the planet is a small number of skitarii who are protecting the admech priests that tend the massive farm machinery.  Who side are they on and will there links to the Ultramarines be needed?

So that is our campaign.  We both have busy lives, so the games will be spaced out. I am growing my army over the year and lee is working on his new ‘allies’

As we progress I am adding new scenary to my collection as well. I have a pump station, church,  macro cannon and sector imparilis to paint up. Each battle will be closer (and more built up) as the fighting gets close to cities.

I’ll be blogging on each game with Lee and I adding background to the armies and planet as we go.

Till then watch the dead zones, something is lurking. 

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The rise of albion game 1

The flyer tried to Jinx, but the autocannons raked across its hull. The small craft shuddered with the impact and small fires broke out where the heavy shells punched through.

The young courier clutched the data bundle.  The wax seal on the dark red canister was stamped with the symbol of the inquisition and holy oils had anointed the canister.  Their aromatic scent being over powered by the smell of burning wiring.  As acrid smoke filled the hold, the courier realised the danger and activated the emergency transistor on the base of the canister.

“Brace, brace, brace” the pilot shouted over the intercom. As he prepared for the shock of an impact, the back of the craft exploded and the lander shock to the left. The nose started drop and the engine started to strain.  The craft was losing altitude, heamorging smoke.

The impact shuck the courier in his harness, debris flying around the cramped cabin space. It was only a matter of time till something hit him ending his short life. The craft started to disinteregrate and on landing it shattered into shrapnel.

The courier was thrown from the craft, his life ended as his body hit the rocky ground. Still clutched in his hand was the data cylinder, his last act was to clamp his bionic arm around the it. Securing it with his dying breath.

Across the valley the skitarii of Gantz 31-23-alpha monitored the impact. With the efficiency of a well oiled cog the recovery team was dispatched and the investigation as the weapons used to down the craft began. Those responsible would want to recover evidence to, so the recovery team went armed for war.

To the west the patrol of 1st Albion regiment. Orders had been received. The data held in the craft must be recovered.

Game 1-intercept the courier.

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Game 1 is a 500pts skirmish. The crashed lander has essential data that the albion 1st wanted. A small skitarii force, was in the area and saw the crash. They were despatched to investigate.

The mission played was relic over a 6×4 board. The relic was a data cylinder that contained the secrets of albion, discovered by a covert inquisition team. The guard of the 1st Albion regiment wanted it back, the skitarii having no idea what it contains wanted the knowledge. To add to the game, Lee had written the text of the message but I could not see it till I captured it with my skitarii.

Armies
Our plan for the game was to keep the armies a patrol forces not full combat units. So we keep them troop heavy with only light vehicles.

1st Albion. (Lee-imperial guard)
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Lees list was a veteran heavy army 2 squads of vets supported by a command squad in a chimera. Supporting this was full squad of sentinel (Armoured) the force was an independent force self sustainable and ready to go to any fight. For his warlord, Lee got preferred enemy:skitarii for the warlord and his unit.

Skitarii (paul)
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My army was a simple army to choose I only had a small force painted. So I took most of it! This was 2 vanguard units (10 with 3 arc and warlord and 7 with 2 plasma),10 rangers in 1 squad with 3 aquabus and the dragoon.

Deployment
The skitarii got to deploy first, but with small armies, grand tactical plans aren’t really on the cards! I deoyed each unit in a long front with the central position taken up by the warlord. The dragoon was on the left flank.
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The guard again held nothing back. They matched the skitarii deployment with the warlords facing each other. The most important deployment was in the left. 10 vets with an auto cannon set up in the woods just off center and took up a good defensive position to their left was the sentinel squad.

Lee was about to seize the initiative when he discovered that all skitarii have scout! The army surged forward in a hurry to take the relic. Rolling to seize the initiative, Lee failed the skitarii would start the campaign with the first shots!
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Turn 1
This was my 1st ever use of this army and mistakes are bound to be made. We joked abut having a whole army with new model luck, but I think it worked in my favor.

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The army surged forward in to weapons range and speed of the Martian troops took lee by suprise. Off to the left the rangers fired 1st killing a few vets in the trees. They went to Ground and mist were saved. In the centre the arc guns of the vanguard were in range of the chimera. Rolling 3 hits the tanks was in danger, but the 3 6’s on the heywire rolls was really unexpected. With arc of lightning flying from the hull, the machine died. 1st blood to the skittarii!
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Wish confidence I boasted about the massive charge range of the dragoon and how lethal it was in combat. Firing the snap shots from a missile launcher, Las cannon and autocannon the dragoon dodged the incoming fire, but miss timed it’s charge. Failing to make the 7″ charge.
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*since the game I have learnt that you can’t charge from scouting. As the charge had no impact on the game this didn’t matter to much.

In reply the comand squad advanced with 3 flamer weapons towards the vanguard. The other units took aim at the nearest units and let rip.
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They killed 6 skitarii and I totally forgot the FNP rolls. All the leadership tests were passed. The skitarii warlord took a wound from the flamers.

The sentinel opened fire on the dragoon at full BS. The Las clipped the walker, but the Insense cloud saved it.

Turn 2
The central vanguard took the objective and we’re all in range of the command squad. The vanguard on the right also came into range, but had taken a few casualties in the previous turn.
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Firing was brutal. The small vanguard killed the 10 vets on the right. The vanguard in the center killed the command squad and wounded the officer. The rangers finished the commander off, slaying him.

The dragoon made his second charge taking a glancing hit from an autocannon on the way in. In combat he killed the 1st sentinel with now damage in return.
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The guard, staggered by the onslaught, still stood firm and avenged the fallen commander. The autocannon killed the skitarii warlord and the various other weapons killed a few more. The squad was down to its last 3 troops. But they held their nerve.

Combat saw another sentinel fall for no damage I return.

Turn 3 and 4
With the guard down and under gunned it was a matter of time till they all died.

The vanguard with the relic to the cargo out of the line of fire. The rangers and other vanguard mover in to a short ranged fire position and killed the vets. Not even the cover could save them.

This was followed by a few rounds of combat between the dragoon and the sentinel. By turn 4 the last guard had died, but the death of the dragoon was on the cards as the last attack of the Armoured sentinel just failed to glace the armour of its erstwhile cousin.
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Game over-winner skitarii

The game ended with a clear skitarii win. The guards guns were silent and the skitarii took their prize.

Unbeknown to the followers of the machine god, the 1st Albion had got a final transmission off and their commander knew were the skitarii would go. All eyes turned to pumphouse 72. Could the data be recovered before it was sent to the inquisition? Would the small skitarii hold the pump station? Only game 2 will answer these questions.

Game one was lots of fun. The skitarii firepower took us both by suprise and the mid range killing field is a scary prospect. I made mistakes with them but all told, I liked using these new killers. The skitarii have the data cylinder and the message. What is on the coded disc.

Go really big or go home!

I finally get to play the big game! While I have played lots of big multiplayer games, I have never had the chance to play a big 1 on 1 game. So the game at Warhammer world will be over 5600 per side. As with all apoc games, the points total is little but a guide. I am taking the ultramarine 2nd company, led by the utterly brilliant Cato Sicarus taking on the Astra millitera, lead by a lord Bromhead, (count as creed). It will be our first game using 7th ed and the 1st time for many new units, including my newly painted thunderhawk!

So, how the hell do you plan for something so big? Well, the normal approach is take the lot and just have fun. Nothing wrong with this, but I wanted to build a ‘fluffy’ army. The game will be for a large bridge. There will be 3 objectives, one at each end and 1 in the middle. The bridge is around 72″ long on a 144″ table. With water either side of the bridge, (that is impassable to all but amphibious or Superheavy walkers) the game will have a strong narrative. The controller of the bridge at the end will win. With a possible 3 points up for grabs and each of us starting near to an objective, just camping is not an option. You gotta fight for your right to be called the victor! Both forces are battle forged, so troops will really matter. My massed flyers are the only things that can’t score the svp!

Here is my list. It’s all spacemarine bar the 2 knights of house verdan, but these are supporting units I the plan. (I know, 2 knights are ‘only’ supporting units! How cool is this game going to be if nearly 800pts is just supporting!)

Glorious 2nd Apoc Force (Ultramarines) 5,720 points

HQ 455 points (8%) (165 points do not count towards limit)

Captain Cato Sicarius (185)
WS6·BS5·S4·T4·W3·I5·A3·Ld10·Sv2+
Mantle of the Suzerain; Talassarian Tempest Blade; plasma pistol; Iron Halo; frag grenades; krak grenades, And They Shall Know No Fear; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines); Independent Character; Rites of Battle; Surprise Attack!; Battle-forged Heroes; Warlord Trait- The Imperium’s Sword

Command Squad Mk2 (165)
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A2·Ld9·Sv3+
4× chainsword; 2× boltgun/bolt pistol; 2× meltagun; power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades; company banner bearer, And They Shall Know No Fear; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines)

• Apothecary
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A2·Ld9·Sv3+
power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades; chainsword; boltgun/bolt pistol; narthecium, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Tactics; Honour or Death

• Company Champion
WS5·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A2·Ld9·Sv3+
power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades; power weapon; combat shield
And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Tactics

Techmarine (75)
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv2+
artificer armour; frag grenades; krak grenades; servo-harness; Techmarines weapons (Chainsword ; bolt pistol), And They Shall Know No Fear; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines); Independent Character; Blessing of the Omnissiah; Bolster Defences

Space Marine Chaplain (105)
WS5·BS4·S4·T4·W2·I4·A2·Ld10·Sv3+
Crozius Arcanum; rosarius; power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades; 2× ranged weapons; special issue equipment (jump pack), Chapter Tactics (ultramarines); Independent Character; Liturgies of Battle; Honour of the Chapter

Space Marine Librarian (90)
WS5·BS4·S4·T4·W2·I4·A2·Ld10·Sv3+
Epistolary; pyromancy; force weapon; psychic hood; 2× ranged weapons (bolt pistol ); power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades, And They Shall Know No Fear; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines); Independent Character; Psyker (Mastery Level 1)

Elites 1,105 points (19%)

10 Sternguard Veterans (290)
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A2·Ld9·Sv3+
combi-flamer; 2× combi-melta; power armour; boltgun; bolt pistol; special issue ammunition; frag grenades; krak grenades; special/ heavy weapons list (Heavy flamer), And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines)

• Space Marine Sergeant
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A2·Ld9·Sv3+
power armour; special issue ammunition; frag grenades; krak grenades; power weapon; boltgun, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines)

Drop Pod Mk 2 (35)
BS4·FA12·SA12·RA12·HP3
storm bolter
Vehicle (open-topped); Transport Capacity: 12 models or 1 Dreadnought or 1 Thunderfire Cannon; Inertial Guidance System; Immobile; Drop Pod Assault

10 Terminators (445)
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A2·Ld9·Sv2+
Terminator armour; storm bolters; heavy flamer; assault cannon; 8× power fist; 2× chainfist, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines)

• Terminator Sergeant
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A2·Ld9·Sv2+
Terminator armour; storm bolter; power weapon, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics-(ultramarines)

Ironclad Dreadnought (135)
WS4·BS4·S6·FA13·SA13·RA10·I4·A2(3)·HP3
seismic hammer (built-in meltagun); Dreadnought close combat weapon (built-in storm bolter); smoke launchers; searchlight; extra armour
Vehicle (walker); Move Through Cover

3 Centurion Assault Squad (200)
WS4·BS4·S5·T5·W2·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv2+
two siege drills; 3× hurrican bolters; 3× Twin Linked flamers, Relentless, Chapter Tactics (ultramarines), And They Shall Know No Fear, Move Through Cover.

• centurion sergeant
WS4·BS4·S5·T5·W2·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv2+
omniscope

Troops 785 points (14%)

10 Tactical Marines (185)
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv3+
power armour; boltguns; bolt pistols; frag grenades; krak grenades; Missile launcher (Flakk); Flamer, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines)

• Space Marine Sergeant
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1.Ld9·Sv3+
power weapon; boltgun; power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics-ultramarines

10 Tactical Marines (180)
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv3+
power armour; boltguns; bolt pistols; frag grenades; krak grenades; Missile launcher (Flakk); Grav gun, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines)

• Space Marine Sergeant
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1.Ld9·Sv3+
bolt pistol; chainsword; power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics-ultramarines

10 Tactical Marines (180)
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv3+
power armour; boltguns; bolt pistols; frag grenades; krak grenades; multi melta; Flamer, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines)

• Veteran space marine sergeant
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·I4·W1·A2·ld9·Sv3+
power weapon; Bolter, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics-ultramarines

10 Tactical Marines (195)
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv3+
power armour; boltguns; bolt pistols; frag grenades; krak grenades; heavy bolter; Meltagun, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines)

• Veteran space marine sergeant
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·I4·W1·A2·ld9·Sv3+
chainsword ; power fist , And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics-ultramarines

Rhino (45)
BS4·FA11·SA11·RA10·HP3
storm bolter; smoke launchers; searchlight; hunter-killer missile , Vehicle (tank); Transport Capacity: 10 models; Repair

Fast Attack 245 points (4%)

10 Assault Marines (245)
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv3+
2× flamer; jump packs; power armour; chainswords; bolt pistols; frag grenades; krak grenades, Jump Infantry; And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines)

• Veteran space marine sergeant
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·I4·W2·A2·ld9·Sv3+
bolt pistol ; thunder hammer; storm shield, And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics-ultramarines

Heavy Support 1,085 points (19%)

10 Devastators (200)
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv3+
power armour; boltguns; bolt pistols; frag grenades; krak grenades; 4× heavy weapons list (2× heavy bolter; 2× las cannon) And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines)

• Space Marine Sergeant
WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1.Ld9·Sv3+
bolt pistol; boltgun; power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Combat Tactics

Drop Pod Mk 2 (50)
BS4·FA12·SA12·RA12·HP3
deathwind missile launcher
Vehicle (open-topped); Transport Capacity: 12 models or 1 Dreadnought or 1 Thunderfire Cannon; Inertial Guidance System; Immobile; Drop Pod Assault

Stormeagle Gunship (285)
BS4·FA12·SA12·RA12·HP4
vengance launcher; twin-linked heavy bolter; ceramite plating; 2 twin linked lascannon, Vehicle (flyer); Aerial Assault; Assault Vehicle; Cemerite Plating, Spirt Of The Machine, Hover; Supersonic; Transport 20.

Fireraptor Gunship (220)
BS4·FA12·SA12·RA12·HP4
Twin linked avenger cannon; auto cannon turret , Vehicle (flyer); Strafing Run; Spirt Of The Machine, Relic Of Armoury.;

Demios Predator Executioner (165)
BS4·FA13·SA11·RA10·HP3
heavy conversion beamer; sponson heavy bolters; smoke launchers; searchlight Vehicle (tank)

Contemptor Dreadnought Mortis (165)
WS5·BS5·S7·FA13·SA13·RA10·I4·A2·HP3 twin-linked autocannon , Vehicle (walker); Fleet, Atomic Shields;

Other 1,135 points (20%)

Thunderhawk Drop ship (685)
BS4·FA12·SA12·RA10·HP 9
Thunderhawk cannon; 4× twin-linked heavy bolter; 6× hellstrike missiles; ceramite plating , Vehicle (super Heavy flyer); Assault Vehicle; Cemerite Plating, Hover; Transport 30

Adeptus Stormwing

Stormraven Gunship (200)
BS4·FA12·SA12·RA12·HP4
twin lascannons; twin-linked multi melta; ceramite plating; hellstrike missiles
Vehicle (flyer); Skies Of Fury; Assault Vehicle; Cemerite Plating, Spirt Of The Machine, Hover; Transport 12 And/or 1 Dreadnought.

Stormtalon Gunship (125)
BS4·FA11·SA11·RA11·HP2
twin-linked assault cannon; Skyhammer missile launcher; ceramite plating
Vehicle (flyer); Aerial Assault; Escort Craft; Hover Strike; Supersonic

Stormtalon Gunship (125)
BS4·FA11·SA11·RA11·HP2
twin-linked assault cannon; Skyhammer missile launcher; ceramite plating
Vehicle (flyer); Aerial Assault; Escort Craft; Hover Strike; Supersonic

Detachment: House Verdan (Imperial Knights)
Troops 745 points (100%)

Paladin (375)
WS4·BS4·S10·FR13·SD13·RE12·W1·A2·Hp6
titan close combat; rapid firing battle cannon; heavy stubber; heavy stubber
Super Heavy Walker. Fear, Strike down, Smash, Stomp, Invincible Behemoth, Hammer Of Wrath, Move Through Cover, Relentless.

Errant (370)
WS4·BS4·S10·FR13·SD13·RE12·W1·A2·Hp6
Titan close combat weapon; thermal cannon; heavy stubber
Super Heavy Walker. Fear, Strike down, Smash, Stomp, Invincible Behemoth, Hammer Of Wrath, Move Through Cover, Relentless.

As you can see, it’s a lot and the points balance doesn’t suggest the care behind the list to make it fluffy! So here us the plan.

2nd company core

The core of my force is the cheapest bit! Numerically the 2nd company is the largest. Made of Sicarus with a command squad, 4 tactical squads, full assault squad and devastators. (1 of each) the Thunderhawk is also 2nd company. Along with a librarian and a chaplain, the 2nd company is a quite large. I have avoided adding extra units such as more psykers or chaplains. The plan is to use them are the core objectives takers. Dropping devs in a pod is a new move for me and I hope to throw a spanner in to his plan and using the chapter tactics will allow for a real suprise.

1st company assault force.
The vetrans of 1st company are in a supporting role. My plan is to pod the sternguard in to his artillery. I am not expecting them to survive, but they will go down in a blaze of glory first. The highly mobile terminators in the storm eagle will fire fight. Deploying as a squad of 10, unsupported, they will smash units threatening the members of the 2nd. The fire raptor will have a similar role, but it will also look to distract from the Thunderhawk.

The anchor force
Any large army standing without support will soon get isolated and broken. To prevent this I am using a solid fire base. 2 knights will act as fire magnets and the paladin in particular will be a primary target. The longer rang of the rf cannon makes in a great support unit. I am also taking a preadator demios with a heavy conversion Beamer as a bit of a surprise package. At 72″ (some near the middle of the board) it will have S10 ap2 large blast. That will focus my opponents attentention! Rounding off this part of the force is a mortis contemptor and techmarine to keep them all alive and in the fight!

The wild card
Just to round off the force I have a adeptus stormwing. Loaded with the ironclad dread, centurions and the librarian, this is my plan to kill his storm lord. The talons will peel off and attack any fliers leaving the raven to focus as a delivery system, straight into his lord of war. That’s 10 S9 ap2 armour bane attacks and then 4 s10 ap2 dread attacks. Should kill it in a turn and the 5 template weapons will fry the passengers as well!

The mission is a go.
Ok, so that the plan, but, I hear you ask, what is he using? Well most of it is easy. 12 tanks, 15 scions, valk, ven, 30 vets, 10 hw teams, around 80 guardsmen, his storm lord and his knight paladin. But, I know he likes to surprise, so, you just don’t know what he will do. I know he has something up his sleeve, he is calling ‘the game changer’ but I don’t what it is. So planning wise I have a big question mark. However, you can plan for what you know and have a reserve just in case! The assault marines have been equipped with both flamers for hordes and a thunder hammer for armour. I will have them in reserve and drop them wherever they are needed most. The plan is set, the boxes are packed and we are ready for the war!

Flight of the 2nd-into the jaws of death. A 5700Pts apoc report

Wow, what a game! Fought out at Warhammer world, lee Bedford and I played out one of the most exciting games of 40k either of had been part of. It’s cinematic feel and epic sweeping moves took the apocalypse format as it was meant to be played. We tried, and in my humble perspective, to recreate an epic struggle for a bridge. Looking like part of wider campaign we set the objective before the game to help forge a narrative.this helped plan the game and the lists we took.

The battlefeild

The forces.
This was an epic clash between ultramarines and imperial guard. Both using the current 7th ed codex and rules.

The 1st Albion army of lord Bromhead.
Lees army was huge! Centred around 2 Superheavy tanks (baneblade and stormlord) was a solid gun line. 6 tanks, with pask in a punisher (Lees favoured unit) 3 basalisk, 3 hydra, 2 large troop blocks, and a host of characters, including Yarrick. In reserve was a host of 10 scions (2×5), 20 vets 2×10), 6 snipers and 2 flyers. We had to expand the deployment zone to fit it all in. To cap off his list the knight ‘pride of Albion’ took his place supporting the storm lord.

2nd company ultramarines
Lead by Cato sicarius, the ultramarine force was dominated by airpower. Central to the plan was a thunderhawk. Supported by 5 other flyers that transported a big part of the force . Taking over half of the 2nd company, 2 squads of 1st comp and a couple of dreads, the army was highly mobile. In support, a pair of house verdan knights and demios pred excutioner.

Deployment and table.
We played on the bridge of J’migan, a 6 x 12 board, the central feature of which was a 4′ long bridge. At each end was an objective marker, with the 3rd in center. The game was simple. Take the bridge. Each marker was worth a single point. Victory was won or lost by taking the J’migan bridge.

Ultramarine Deployment

To speed up deployment, we both set up at the same time. The ultramarines spread out over their 18″ deployment zone, really quiet thinly, with lots in reserve. The guard filled their zone with a sea of men and tanks. Split in to 2 forces, you could see his plan. The bane blade, pask (with 2 other tanks) Yarrick and a large blob of men took the road to the bridge. The storm lord, along with 3 more tanks, the knight and Bromhead took the open ground to the right of the bridge. His 6 support tanks took up places at the back. His deployment took a while, so I went for coffee. To add a small surprise I infiltrated tactical squad 4 w/multimelta on the Aquila emplacement to the left of his deployment. (Using sicarius battle hardened skill)

Imperial Deployment

Turn 1
We rolled for 1st turn and the ultramarines won. My act of this game was to declare devastator tactical doctrine. My first move was to drop some diversionary troops into his army, drop podding with a devastator squad was always going to be a risk, but as they could move and shoot this turn, it was worth the risk. The squad had been split into 2 squads, las cannons in 1 and heavy bolters in the second. My army at the other end of table slowly advanceds, but nothing was in range. The devs and tactical of the diversionary squads took a few shots, killing a hydra and taking a hull point off the 1st bask. This left it unable to shot this turn.

Ultramarine turn 1

Imperial turn 1 was a slow advance, with little shooting. The basalisk took a hp off a rhino, and he also shot at the division force, kill 6 from the tactical squad and 5 dev marines. My plan to divert actually worked. He turned around 3 leman Russ tanks to deal with dev squad and this would effectively keep them out of the game. He also tried some psychic powers, with little effect.

Score 0-0

Turn 2
Turn 2 saw the much anticipated arrival of a Thunderhawk. The massive model flew 36″ and was still pretty much out of range. Along side it came the fireraptor and stormwing, the 1st time I used this formation. It won’t be last either! Only the stormeagle didn’t arrive. Back down at the other end of the table, I dropped in the 2nd pod, this time with 10 sternguard and a 10 man assault squad, split into combat squads. The locator beacon on the first pod was very useful for this deployment. The combined diversionary force now stood at nearly 1000pts. The shooting phase this time was a bit better. The hawk, only in range with the dorsal cannon blew up a single guardsman and took the fists hull point off the storm lord. The knights hit out out their erstwhile brother machine, taking a hull point of the walker.

Arrival of the Hawk!20140607_140109 - Copy

The distraction force ripped into the guardsman, slaying over 20. The sternguard killed off the auto cannon squads, the devs combat squad with las cannons, spinning on the spot took a pot shot at the bane blade taking a hull point. I also charged into the side of a bask with the remaining marine from the dev combat squad near the center of the board. He then spent 4 turns trying to harm it! He took 2 of the 3 hp by the end turn 6!

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The guard responded with a slow advance. Both flyers arrived, but lee forgot to roll for reserves on a vet squad and both scions squads. The armour on the bridge took let rip, causing lots of wound. The storm lord opened up at a rhino. I’d love to say the plucky little tank held up, but no. It was shredded. The crew got out ok, but it’s game was over. As in over killed. It was an awesome dice roll from, the 15 s6 hits was great fun for lee to roll, with more than a little look of glee! In the psychic phase, lee shot of a power, killing nothing, but rolled 2 6s. He was killed before Yarrick shot him. The basalisk all took exception to cato’s rasorback, taking a hull point and making it unable to shoot for a turn. For those that have fought his basalisk, you’ll know that by now, all would normally be dead or the targets would be inside the minimum range. On this table however, they dominated the shooting for the whole game.

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Score 0-0

Turn 3
Arriving in the 3 turn was the last if the airpower, the stormeagle stuffed to capacity with the terminators. It swept in at full speed, dropping the chance to shoot, but catching up with the rest of the airpower. With movement complete, Every other unit shot at the enemy, slowly whittling down the hull points spread across the board.

The thunderhawk blew up a few tanks, it was finally living up to promise. The marines inside were itching to get on the ground, but the river, that we had decided was impassable, was to wide. By turn 3, the hawk was still 8″ from the other side!

Hi lights from shooting was death of the vendetta and the ending of the last of the hydra guns. (While I didn’t kill the tank, but the maingun was gone! ) The sternguard killed of more troops and the last of missile squads died. In the assault phase the assault squad with flamers charged into the guard, killing 5 of them, including Yarrick! The rest of the squad went off to kill the last of the Leman Russ demolishes. The thunder hammer came into its own, smashing the tank to bits.

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Turn 3 for the guard was a mixed affair. Remembering that he hadn’t rolled for his reserve troops. Getting them this turn, they tried to retake his deployment zone. The scions killing not only an assault marine, but also 2 sternguard. His veterans also took a pop shot at 1st company veterans, with no effect. His other vets just jumped out of the Valkyrie taking on the tactical squad blown out of the rhino last turn. Pask and his unit took the first strategic vp of the game!

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The storm lord took aim at the hawk, taking off a whole heap of hull points, with 4 left after the turn. The knight took more hp off the opposing paladin. The basilisk killed the demios before it could unleash it’s conversion Beamer. The 2 artillery shots blew it apart with some great accuracy. The shoots, both over 100″ hit, the second earth shaker killing it.

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At the start of combat, Yarrick got back up only to die a second time.

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Score 1-0

Turn 4
My plan for turn 4 was to start the charging. The Ravens dropped centurions and the ironclad. The hawk was due to drop it’s marine cargo. Sadly, I couldn’t as it was still in the river, so it couldn’t drop into hover mode. Instead, moving 12″ it was now directly over the storm lord.

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The knights took the SVP on my side of the bridge and took aim at the pride of Albion. The sternguard at the far end of the table killed a unit of scions, the elites of the 1st company showing the scions what true elites did in battle. Across the board the ultramarines showed their dominance, but the 2 Superheavy tanks still held the ground. The storm lord in particular looking like the king of this battle. I really needed to die! Unloading on the Vulcan tooting behemoth. It still had 6 left and was still in this fight.

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His 4th turn had single objective. Kill the Thunderhawk! His forces moved in to position to line up as many shots as possible. His 3 sentinel moved to get a clear shot. Pask and the remaining tank all lined up for a shot and the big blue.

Shooting phase from the guard was so much fun. Unloading almost his entire army at hawk. With 4 hull points left it was close to crashing, but it held on in there. After 65 shots, it was down to 1 hull point. The entire army had fired and only the Baneblade’s main gun was remaining. The 10″ blast s9 shot couldn’t harm the hawk, but it’s coaxial auto cannon could. The dilemma was simple. Waste his main gun shot and target the hawk on the slimmest of chances or stick to his plan and kill some ground troops.

After some thought he picked up the 2 dice for the auto cannon. Needing 6s to hit and not being twin linked , he rolled to hit his 66th and 67th shot. The last of the dice to come to rest was a 6! Rolling to pen, he got a 5! It was done! The fatally wounded hawk peeled to the left, crashing on the river bank. 18 of 20 marines died in the explosion and the cry from lee was simple. “Thunderhawk down!”

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Combat saw fights across the board and the battle had, at this point, split into 3 games. In his deployment zone, the vets were unable to charge the sternguard, the combat with Yarrick vs the assault marine finally ended, with Yarrick out for a 3rd time, the rest of that blob of troops killed the last of the assault squad. To the other end of the table, the marine tactical squad struggled to kill off the last of the Valkyrie vets, the flyer having returned to air in pursuit of the contemptor mortis.

After a massive turn for guard, turn 5 would be critical for the game.

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Score 1-1

Turn 5
While the attempt to kill the hawk was awesome, it left most of my force un scratched. There would be revenge! The eagle dropped in to hover mode, disgorging the terminators, the other flyers took aim at the storm lord. The centurions lined up to kill the bane blade. The 2 remaining marines from the hawk, a sgt with a power fist and melta gun worked their way back towards the stormlord. The knight paladin took the center of the bridge, it’s errant compatriot taking the other end of the bridge.

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Shooting saw everything in range take out the storm lord. The titanic explosion killed a terminator and both surviving marines. The pride of Albion also died knee deep in the mud of the river, a blast into its un shielded flank from the thermal cannon. The mortis dread, taking it’s only shots in the game killed the Valkyrie. Shots that could not hit The stormlord all went into killing Bromhead and the guard commander died in revenge for ordering the targeting of the hawk. The sternguard killed off the kilt vets and the Lascannon toting devs took out a basalisk.

By now the guard ranks were looking thin and combat saw the death of remaining scions. The centurions charged the bane blade, taking the hulking tank to its last few hull points. Killing 2 superheavies in a turn was a good results, but killing a 3rd was beyond even the mighty ultramarines.

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The guard, feeling that the battle was lost, tightened their belts and dug in. The last of the troops all took up defensive positions. The only survivor of the exploding stormlord was a mortar team, who facing 9 terminators, still didn’t run. The baneblade killed the hovering eagle, and along with pask killed the paladin knight. The explosion did not affect any troops, but the loss did free the SVP.

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Combat saw the final death of the veterans from the valk. The Yarrick again got back up. Despite the losses, this game was still close!

Score 1-1

Turn 6
It was nearly 7 hours after we first arrived. Over 5000pts worth of casualties had been removed, including 4 superheavies. And yet the score still stood at 1-1! Turn 6 really would make the end of this titanic struggle!

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With extreme prejudice, all the fliers took up positions to kill survivors, the errant knight surged forward to take the central bridge SVP. Cato’s razorback took the SVP at the marine side of the bridge, it’s command squad and warlord having got out 2 turns ago to try to kill the valk. The command squad now held some ruins on the bank of the river. The librarian supported by the infitrating combat squad (remember them from turn 1? No? Neither did we!) took the SVP on the guard end of the bridge.

The shooting phase saw a clinical removal of threats, the largest of which was pask and his unit. The errants thermal cannon taking both out.

Combat saw the death of baneblade, the explosion kill 2 of the centurions.

The guard had been broken, but still fought on. And in a display worthy of mention, killed Cato sicarus, again with a display of outstanding artillery. A basilisk shot hitting the commander of marines. With Most of his force dead only Yarrick, a wounded basilisk and a few other bits remined. The bridge had fallen, the ultramarines were swarming over the table and the battle was lost. But still, Thunderhawk down!

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Final score 0-3, Ultramarine win!

Conclusions
I hope you got a feel for the passion of this game. Such cinematic moments, great movement and real drama. The 2 armies looked great in such numbers. The 6 superheavies were awesome to use, but they didn’t dominate the game. Other smaller units hard their parts in the story. Here are my hi-lights.

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-the super accurate basilisk! They really came into their own this game.
-the lone marine trying for 4 turns in vain to kill a basilisk with crack grenades.
-the combat between 7 marines a 1 guard vet that took 3 turns of combat to resolve!
-the only shot from a hydra, a heavy bolter, trying to kill a talon.

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The star of the game for me was the battle to kill the hawk. It was such drama and so close, it made the game for lee, and I, despite losing my hawk, really enjoyed the spectacle of the attempts to kill it.

We both forgot bits of army, with both made mistakes, but the game allowed for that. I really enjoy fighting lee in 40k, his approach is to make games as much fun as possible. Both lists were full fluff based, fully painted and driven by the narrative. This drove the game and by focusing the story on the bridge, led to an epic clash!!

Till next time, see you all across the battle table.

Sunday update 020314

It’s been quite a week at work so work on project gladius has been slow. Need to start off by say a huge well done to lee, (@ratinabun on twitter) his Lego iron maiden went supernova on miniature monad this week with over 1200 re tweets! Madness I tell you. His project is film some ‘live’ maiden tracks using stop motion on a fully working stage. The guy is a slightly mad genius.

For project gladius, my thunderhawk, I have managed to finish the cockpit completely now and the top roof is done. Work has stared on the inside of the main body, with the nose section walls done.

Also completed is the landing gear assembly and this turned it to a total pain. I could not get the thing level and, being very slightly anal about these thing, this took me a while to fix.

I got some work done on the pilots as well, but these need to be finished. I have ordered the acrylic rod for the base, but I am still thinking about the main body of the base. It needs to be really strong, but I want it to be clean. This is taking some planning and any ideas are greatly appricated.

On the hobby front of course is the realise yesterday of the knights and the announcement of the codex: imperial knights. I caved in and I have ordered 2 of these beasts and the codex. To do this I have sold my imperial guard. This army was on the shelf and not getting any love. If I still had it when the codex is released, you know I would slide off target.

I have decided to try the airbrush out on the knights and using k’oosh from Babylon 5 as the core of an idea, house verdan’s core house colours will be a mottled green. I am also going to base the metal using Vallejo airbrush paint. (Gun) this is a new challenge for me and I have bought a couple of Vallejo air paints to play with.

So, that’s me for the week. I have spent enough this month already and I have more to paint. I will try to finish the interior of the thunderhawk this week, but then I will do the 2 knights. I am planning on doing both at the same time, to help me them match. What could possibly go wrong?

Till next week, see you across the battle field.

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Surgical strike team.

Captain Adamar looked at force disposition on the hololithic display. The rebels had planned their defences well. For nearly 2 kilometres in each direction the line was solid. To breach the line, they would need the force a hole. It was the sort of challenge he loved. He had committed the strength of the company to the line off to the east and, as predicted the enemy had added reserves to that point in the line. The imperial guard units at his disposal threw themselves at the enemy as ordered. He had gathered his reserve forces and prepared to strike where least expected, the rebel commander had been found and the scouts of the 10th had confirmed the old bastard was in the field.

Adept Valdez approached through the gloom of the command post. “My lord, the techmarines have signalled. The teleport is ready and the pod is primed for launch”

Time to end this rebellion he thought. Touching his comm stud, “sergeants, the time is upon us, operation Remus is go, start combat timer on my mark” turning his massive bulk with speed and purpose that belied the terminators size, he strode on the platform. The 10 other hulking shape stood to battle ready, ozone starting to crackle over the cerimite armour,

“We March for mcragge! Courage and honor” he said in to the open comms Channel the teleport chamber fading around him.

In an up coming game I am trying a new list against imperial guard. It’s a radical new approach, based on the concept of a surgical strike. The fluff behind it is a decapitation strike. How would a marine army strike a key location in the middle of a campaign? My answer would be a scout force scope the target and then, using teleport homers and locator becons, a strike team would deep strike right onto the enemy. Opening up with massed flamers, storm bolters and assault cannons, they will tear the heart out of the foe. This twin surgical strike will be a precision attack.

The ethos for the list was split into 2 groups. The first wave of scouts will deploy inside the range of the opponents big guns, mainly any basilisks that may turn up. The second wave will deep strike. Leading the force will be a terminator captain. The only bit that doesn’t fit is a drop podding ironclad. The pod gets a locator beacon allowing me to drop the assault marines with accuracy. I have included it in the strike team, but it will arrive first turn, I just hope it’s frontal armour can take the pounding.

Strike team

Scouting force.
This force was easy to choose. I only have 25 scouts, so they all got selected. In the mix is a missile launcher with flakk and a heavy bolter.

Strike team.
I have chosen to go big on my strike team. 10 terminators and 10 assault marines will drop right into his lines. To soften them up I am taking my ironclad dread, in a pod with a locator beacon. The idea is to distract away from the scouts and mess up any plans he has. I try to force him in a reactionary approach and this will enable me to control the game. Rounding off the strike team is a single storm talon to provide air support.

So here is my take on a surgical strike team.

HQ 140 points (9%)
Space Marine Terminator Captain (140) WS6·BS5·S4·T4·W3·I5·A3·Ld10·Sv3+ Iron Halo; Terminator armour; lightning claw; storm shield; special issue equipment. And They Shall Know No Fear; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines); Independent Character.

Elites 635 points (42%)
10 Terminators (445) WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A2·Ld9·Sv2+ Terminator armour; storm bolters; heavy flamer; assault cannon; 7× power fist; 2× chainfist. And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines).
Terminator Sergeant WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A2·Ld9·Sv2+ Terminator armour; storm bolter; power weapon. And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; combat Tactics (ultramarines).

Ironclad Dreadnought (145) WS4·BS4·S6·FA13·SA13·RA10·I4·A2(3)·HP3 seismic hammer (built-in heavy flamer); Dreadnought close combat weapon built-in heavy flamer; smoke launchers; searchlight; extra armour. Vehicle (walker); Move Through Cover.
• Drop Pod Mk 2 (45) BS4·FA12·SA12·RA12·HP3 storm bolter; locator beacon. Vehicle (open-topped); Transport Capacity: 12 models or 1 Dreadnought or 1 Thunderfire Cannon; Inertial Guidance System; Immobile; Drop Pod Assault.

Troops 363 points (24%)
10 Scouts (133) WS3·BS3·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv4+ 9× boltgun; heavy bolter with hellfire shells; scout armour; bolt pistols; frag grenades; krak grenades. And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines); Infiltrate; Move Through Cover; Scouts.
Space Marine Scout Sergeant WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1.Ld8·Sv4+ power weapon; boltgun; power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades. And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Combat Tactics (ultramarines).

10 Scouts (175) WS3·BS3·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv4+ missile launcher (flakk); scout armour; bolt pistols; frag grenades; krak grenades. And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines); Infiltrate; Move Through Cover; Scouts.
Space Marine Scout Sergeant WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1.Ld8·Sv4+ bolt pistol; power fist; teleport homer; power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades. And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Combat Tactics (ultramarines).

5 Scouts (55) WS3·BS3·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv4+ 5× shotgun; scout armour; bolt pistols; frag grenades; krak grenades. And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines); Infiltrate; Move Through Cover; Scouts.
Space Marine Scout Sergeant WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1.Ld8·Sv4+ bolt pistol; boltgun; power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades. And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Combat Tactics (ultramarines).

Fast Attack 360 points (24%)
10 Assault Marines (235) WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1·Ld8·Sv3+ 2× flamer; jump packs; power armour; chainswords; bolt pistols; frag grenades; krak grenades. Jump Infantry; And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Chapter Tactics (ultramarines).
Space Marine Sergeant WS4·BS4·S4·T4·W1·I4·A1.Ld8·Sv3+ Thunder hammer; storm shield; power armour; frag grenades; krak grenades. And They Shall Know No Fear; Combat Squads; Combat Tactics (ultramarines).
Stormtalon Gunship (125) BS4·FA11·SA11·RA11·HP2 twin-linked assault cannon; Skyhammer missile launcher; ceramite plating. Vehicle (flyer); Aerial Assault; Escort Craft; Hover Strike; Supersonic.

I hope it will be a coherent force and the game will be fun. There is an inheritance instability in the list. If the reserve units don’t arrive together, they can be picked off piecemeal. My opponent, lee will push any weakness and the outcome is really in the balance of the reserve rolls. In a league game I’d never take this risk, but this will add to a great game and the tension on turn to will be great.

I’ll blog a full battle rep soon. Till the, see you across the battle table!

Sunday 090214

Wow, it’s February already! My big build continues. Since last week I have had yet another change in plans. While it was my intention to get on with the sternguard, I have needed to get others done instead. Why? Well for once I have a good reason. I have a game coming up next Saturday, 15th February against lee Bedford, other wise known as @ratinabun on twitter.

Our game is 1500pts of 40k. His 1st Albion imperial guard will met the ultramarines, but not the 2nd company, but a new list form, a surgical strike team. Our games are always fun, and while I love to play anyone at 40k, I really look forward to games with lee. We have been friends for many years and we always have great games. They are always friendly and we both like to throw new things into the game. Though friendly, we are both competitive and want to win.

So I created a new lis that only 1 of my regular units in. The other 7 units are things I’d normally use as additional options rather than base a list around them. Sadly 1unit needs to be painted. I’d never use unpainted against lee. I’ll blog out the list next week along with a battle report. I know that he is painting new units and I believe this includes a unit of ogryn! I never, in 20+ years of gaming, faced these brutes, so this will be great fun! Also this week I assembled 2 other squads.

Unit 1- terminators.
I planned to use a full squad of 10 terminators, possibly broken into combat squads. With a heavy flamer and assault cannon, they should be able to make a mess of Lees big guard blob unit. I have had to paint up the last 4 terminators from thus squad. Made using regular marine and deathwing bits. I had bought 2 boxes of deathwing terminators and 1 box of assault terminators. Combining the 3 boxes I have 10 ornate assault terminators, 5 with thunder hammers, 5 with claws, a term librarian and 4 assault terminators.

The other 6 regular terminator were from the assault on black ride set. I was not overly happy with the sergeant he felt stiff and stilted, so I decide to repaint him. I replaced the arms and banner with new parts and I have added the cape from the deathwing terminators. I am really pleased with this now. The other 5 will be reprinted to give a coherent looking unit. This will be a stretch to get them done, but worth it. So far I have painted 5 of the 10. All will to be based and I can see me having a mad rush on Friday night to finish them off.

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Whilst waiting for various bits to dry, I have assembled 2 other units, assault squad 2 and tactical squad 4. I needed some bots from eBay to finish both of these off and they arrived in the week.

assault marines
I only have 10 finished assault marines, squad 7 of 2nd company and I have assembled 1st half of the 2nd company assault squad. The new unit, squad 8, will be 10 strong in time, but for now, I only have the 1st 5. I made this unit using the standard box set, but added a few bits from the new veteran box sets, to add some varity.

I had used the legs from this kit on tactical squad 4, giving them a running pose. I added the legs from the vanguard box set and the crest from the sternguard to make the sergeant for this squad. It gives him an action pose that I quite like. Also in the unit are 2 plasma pistols. The new codex allow you to upgrade 2 marine to either flamer or plasma pistols, not, as in the older codex, 1 for every 5 marines. This means you can take 2 upgrades in a 5 man squads. Squad 7 has 2 flamers, so it made sense to have 2 plasma pistols.

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Tactical squad 4
Squad 4 is one the 6 tactical squads in the battle company and I had the tactical squad to use to create them. I decided to make this squad look like they were running. To achieve this I used assault marine legs. The 1st half was done awhile ago, but the 2nd set of legs arrived so I got them assembled this week. I’ll talk more about these while I paint them soon.

So, that was last week. What’s next you ask? Well, I I’d answer, but knowing me it will change any way. I need to focus on the terminators and that is the goal. Next Saturday will be our game, so keep em peeled for the live tweet #battrep from us both and until the! see you all across the battle table.

Unboxing the Macro Cannon

I have been given a Aquila Strongpoint  as a Christmas gift from my wife. she is very good at feeding my Plastic Crack habit and she puts up with my hobby like a stoic trooper.

the Opened Box

The Wall of Martyr kits are a break away from the normal GW work and they a a quick way to add loads of scenery into your battles. with the addition of the Strong hold assault book you can now add these to your regular games as part of your army. the ‘Aqulia Macro Cannon’ is the biggest of the kits and is HUGE! When I opened the box I was surprised by the contents and this is a real departure for GW. In fact it reminded more of a Forgeworld kit. you get 2 large bits, the Turret and the main building and 4 zip lock bags each containing a number of large parts. for a kit of this size it only has 56 part! it is worth noting that unlike normal kits you can make it in both versions (the turret sits over the Missiles) but you don’t get any other options! You can upgrade it by adding up to 4 heavy bolters, but you don’t get these in the kit which is a little disappointing.  the only decision is to add the steps or not. With the steps in place its a stand alone model. Without them, you can fit it into the WoM stuff. I have chosen the first option.  largely as I want to use it as an objective in games and thus the stand alone  option works so much better for me.  Also in the box are the Rules for both Layouts which is a departure for GW. Give away the Rules?  Its a nice touch I thought.

Main elements

the model is less assembled and more ‘clad’ in the external parts. The Wall has blank sides and you stick the panels onto this. you then add the Buttress and doors.  Sadly 2 of the antenna had broken on the Buttress, but this will be an easy fix.

Clading Bag 1 Cladding Buttresses

The turret and main gun are assembled separately and fit on the top with now glue required. this allows for the turret to be moved or removed to expose the 7 missiles below, converting it in to a Vortex Missile Silo.

Turret Bits

To paint this will be a challenge. Its hard to break it down to smaller than 2 big bits and it will a big thing to try to hold while painting. I am relishing this challenge and I can’t wait to make a start. Prep wise, the mould lines are virtually non exisitant and it took me about 45 Mins to Prep this for assembly.  Compare that to the Stompa, a similar sized model, which took a week of prep alone!

Side plates

All in all, I would say this is a good kit.  Fast to assemble, but challenging to paint. In games It will be a scenery piece more than a part of any army, but we have a few Apoc games planned for 2014, so it will get to fire in anger. With my Thunderhawk, it will be great to roll out 2 Super heavies!