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Events and Battle Reports

Birthday Spankings 2012: Monsters vs. the Machine II by Kenton Kilgore, with commentary by Patrick Eibel
(“Seize Ground”; 2000 points each)

Every April, my best friend Pat and I get together on or near his birthday for some 40K brutality.  Recently, Pat’s Tyranids had been on the receiving end of a whoopin’, courtesy of my Dark Eldar, and he wanted a chance for some cruel revenge.  I was itching to try out the new-and-not-so-improved Necrons, so I broke out the ‘bots and paid a visit to my friend’s house. 

Pat pointed out that since 2004, when we started reporting these “birthday spankings” on this site, Necrons have been in four of them (counting this year).  Just as the swallows come to Capistrano every spring, so too do the Toasters return to fight as the weather warms up…. 

Hive Fleet Ravana (1995 points) by Patrick Eibel  
After the beat-down I suffered at the hands of the Dark Eldar, I did a little overhaul to my Tyranid army.  I picked up some Swarmlord arms to convert my walking Hive Tyrant; I picked up 5 of the new Tervigon/Tyrannofex kits because the model is so damn cool and a second Trygon because one isn’t enough; I picked up some more Termagants for the Tervis to poop out; I converted the Carnifex that I was using as a Tyrannofex back into a Carni; and I traded away some older models I was never going to use (Biovores, Lictors.) 

That’s a lot of changing going on, so I was eager to try some of the new toys out.  I wanted to maximize the monstrous goodness and get up in the Necron’s grille (as it were), so I brought:

  • The Swarmlord w/ 2 Tyrant Guard
  • Two broods of 2 Hive Guard each
  • Two broods of 12 Termagants each, w/ fleshborers
  • Two Tervigons w/ scything talons, toxin sacs, and Catalyst
  • Twelve Genestealers led by a Broodlord
  • Tyrannofex w/ rupture cannon
  • Two Trygons

Yblis’ Centurions (1993 points) by Kenton Kilgore  
Obviously, when one is facing the Tyranids with Necrons, one should load up on very expensive, heavyweight close-combat units.  Well, no, actually: one should instead make all efforts to blast the Nids before they get their claws in the same ZIP code as one’s Assault Phase-phobic ‘bots.  Accordingly, I brought:

  • Phaeron w/ staff of light and resurrection orb
  • Five Crypteks w/ eldritch lances
  • Four squads of 14 Necron Warriors each
  • Two Night Scythes
  • Two squads of 5 Immortals w/ gauss blasters each
  • Two squads of 5 Flayed Ones each
  • Eight bases of Canoptek Scarabs
  • Five Tomb Blades w/ particle beamers
  • Three Heavy Destroyers



Deployment

Set-Up
  by Kenton Kilgore

We played at Pat’s house, on a 4' x 8' table on which Pat had set up the scenery.  I chose what side I wanted, and we rolled randomly to determine the mission (“Seize Ground”) and deployment (“Pitched Battle”).  We rolled and learned that we would have four objectives, which we placed: one on my right, two in the middle (one on my side, one near Pat’s), and one on my left.

We rolled off to determine who would deploy first.  I won the roll and nominated Pat to go first, so that I could set up to counter him and so his Bugs could run into range on Turn 1 (Necrons are known for having short-range weaponry).  Pat set up his Nids in a nice clump (oh, what I would have given for some ordnance blast templates), with Termagants out front, the Tyrannofex in the back, and almost everything else clustered in the middle around the Swarmlord and the Tervigons.

I set up with Night Scythes (both carrying Warriors) on my left, then (from left to right), the Scarabs, the Tomb Blades and Heavy Destroyers, then the Immortals (one of them in cover), and my Warriors (with one squad in the center led by Phaeron Lucifer). 

Pat set up his infiltrating Genestealers a bit ahead of his main force, behind a large rock, and I put each Flayed One unit on a flank, in cover.  I successfully rolled to seize the initiative, so that I could shoot the Bugs right where they were and hopefully stop some of them before they could get going.



Necron Turn 1: Aside from the Scarabs and Night Scythes moving up, it looks a lot like the deployment photo....

Turn 1 
My first turn started off well, with Warrior Squad 4 (on my right flank) tramping forward to grab an objective, conveniently located on a large rock that would also provide cover (essential for dealing with assaulting Tyranids, who lack the equivalent of frag grenades).  My Night Scythes moved up, as did my Scarabs.  Firing from all units in range and with line of sight killed seven Genestealers, and wounded a Hive Guard, a Tervigon, and a Trygon. 

The two Tervigons combined to make 13 baby Termagants, but both rolled doubles in doing so, so there would be no more reinforcements for them.  The Tervigons granted Feel No Pain to the wounded Trygon and the stricken unit of Hive Guard to keep them safe. 

The Swarmlord gave the Genestealers Furious Charge, but the latter didn’t make it into charge range even after running.  One unit of Hive Guard fired on Warrior Squad 1, knocking down two of them (one would get back up at the start of Turn 2, thanks to Reanimation Protocols).  The other Hive Guard fired at the Heavy Destroyers, to no avail.  Termagants unleashed their fleshborers on the Scarabs (“Little guys on little guys,” Pat said), killing a base.  More significantly, the Tyrannofex’s rupture cannon took out a Night Scythe, meaning that its squad of Warriors would have to come in from my table edge.

In the Assault Phase, one of Pat’s Trygons (on my left) attacked a unit of my Flayed Ones, and though the Blood ‘Bots were in cover (and thus, went first), they whiffed on their attacks.  Whereupon the Trygon effortlessly squished them.  Effortlessly, I tell you. 


Turn 2
The Necrons retreated before the Tyranid onslaught, a pattern that would continue throughout the game.  Well, except for the part where my other Night Scythe moved up and its Warriors disembarked near the Trygon that was using the finger-blades of the recently-consumed Flayed Ones to pick its many, many teeth. 

The Scythe and the Warriors combined their fire to knock two Wounds off the Trygon: good, but not nearly good enough.  Elsewhere, Toaster shooting (Immortals + Tomb Blades + Warriors + Heavy D’s) took out four Genestealers in cover, leaving one ordinary one and the Broodlord, who were uncomfortably close to my line.



In the Assault Phase, the Scarabs charged the Trygon, intent on causing at least one unsaved Wound, which, thanks to Entropic Strike, would strip the oversized space salamander of its armor save.  Sadly for me, the Trygon is much, much faster than Scarabs, an important tidbit of knowledge that I had overlooked.  Striking first, the Trygon mulched all of them, again effortlessly.

Hmmm.



The Trygon slithered towards my Heavy Destroyers (ruh roh) as one Tervigon and its attendant Gaunts moved in towards the Warrior Squad that had just gotten out of the Scythe.  The Swarmlord granted the two remaining Stealers Furious Charge.    

Pat showed me how the Shooting Phase ought to be done, with both Hive Guard units dropping all five of the Tomb Blades.  The Tyrannofex took out an Immortal, and the Tervicow + Termacalves shot dead two Warriors.

The Genestealers charged the unit of Immortals that were, sadly, not in cover, and butchered them.  The Trygon assaulted the Heavy Destroyers, and—need I go on?  I think not. 

 
The Trygon is so badass that it can kill a unit of Heavy Destroyers just by turning its back and farting on them

Turn 3
The Warrior Squad whose Scythe had been shot down in Turn 1 came onto the board, regrettably (for Pat) close to the Trygon who had just snarfed down the Heavy Destros for dessert.  They rapid-fired the Trygon into a premature extinction.  The other Warrior squad nearby fired at the oncoming Tervigon, hoping to kill it and take its sycophant Termagants with it, but didn’t even take a Wound off it.  In happier news, the Immortals in cover blasted the last two Genestealers, albeit a turn too late.  Elsewhere, my other unit of Flayed Ones moved to intercept the Termagants headed for the objective on Pat’s side of the table.


Newly-arrived Necron Warriors light up the Trygon

The Hive Guard and an oncoming brood of Termagants fired at the Immortals in cover, taking down three of them.  The Tyrannofex’s rupture cannon missed the Night Scythe.  The Tervigon and Termagants that had thus far been having a fire fight with the Warriors charged them, killing four Metal Men.  Team Toaster killed two Termagants and stayed in the fight.

 

Turn 4
Fire from Warrior squads on my right knocked three Wounds off the other Trygon, which had been trying to slink—going from cover to cover—towards my guys using.  The newly-arrived Warriors fired on the Hive Guard, killing the previously-wounded one and wounding the other.  Seeing the Swarmlord drawing nigh, the Immortals opened up on him, but a Tyrant Guard sucked down a Wound for its master.  Ignoring the Tyrannofex, the Night Scythe fired on the Hive Guard, but failed to harm them.


Awfully canny of that Trygon to carry around some grey terrain for cover.  Even more canny is out it changed its color to match.... ;) 

In the Assault Phase, the Termagants and Tervigon struck down five Warriors, and the resolve of the rest broke.  As expected, they were easily caught and trampled.  On Pat’s turn, the Swarmlord gave his Tyrant Guard Furious Charge as they waded closer to the Immortals.  The Tyrannofex nailed the Night Scythe with two penetrating hits, destroying it.  Hive Guard fired on the Flayed Ones, dropping three of them: the other two broke and ran as nearby Termagants claimed the objective. 

 The Swarmlord & Associates charged the Immortals, easily hacking them down though they were in cover and struck first (to no effect).  The wounded Trygon charged my Warrior unit that had taken their objective on Turn 1.  Again, my guys went first, as they were in cover, but it didn’t help: the Trygon killed seven, but I rolled a “3” on my Morale test and my droids stayed put.

 Turn 5
A single Flayed One got to his feet, thanks to Reanimate, as did three Warriors from the squad engaged with the Trygon.  Because the Trygon was nearby, the Flayed Ones fell back 8 more inches.  The surviving unengaged Warrior squads—the one with Phaeron Lucifer and the one that had come on the board late and killed the other Trygon—fired everything they had into the Swarmlord—and the latter squad was in rapid-fire range.  Despite 41 gauss flayer shots and 1 eldritch lance shot, neither Swarmy or his two chums lost a single wound.


Warriors try in vain to drop the Swarmlord, but they're too distracted by all that pink....

On my right, the Trygon killed five more ‘bots, but the Necrons stayed in the fight as I rolled a “5” on my Morale test.  Nevertheless, it was all over but the shouting, and I conceded, with the Tyranids holding two objectives and one objective contested.

 

Winner: Hive Fleet Ravana

Post-Game Analysis by Patrick Eibel

“Don’t call it a comeback, I’ve been here for years…” 

--LL Cool J

 
The Tyranids must have been seeking redemption for the last game as well, because they performed exceedingly well.  My MVP has to be the Trygon on my right flank, which gave it all while taking out four different units. 

There are a lot of Tyranid lists that rely solely on Hive Guard to handle gun duties.  With the Tyrannofex costing nearly 300 points, I can understand why it is not overly popular, but having a Strength 10 shot to take down vehicles is very useful.  The Tervigons both crapped out (get it: craps, rolling dice,… oh, never mind) in Turn 1 by rolling doubles.  Fortunately for me, Kenton had his hands full with all of the big bugs to worry about my little objective holders.

I made a concerted effort to remember all the fiddly rules for the army (particularly the psychic powers), and for the most part was successful.  I look forward to the birthday game every year, win or lose.  This game was a ton of fun, and not just because the bugs were chewing up the scenery (literally.) 



Post-Game Analysis by Kenton Kilgore
Note to self: “Need more guns.”  Also: “Need better guns.”

In this battle, I overestimated several of the Necrons’ abilities, notably their firepower (even in rapid-fire range).  That led me to putting the two Night Scythes, their Warriors, the Scarabs, and a unit of Flayed Ones on my left flank, where they were all swiftly paved over.  Instead, I should have kept them in the center, where they would have been much more useful.  As I was deploying those units, I told myself that doing so might blow up in my face, but I thought they could handle themselves.  Lesson learned.

Things I didn’t like: Scarabs and Flayed Ones getting trucked (although, in their defense, they got charged by a frickin’ frackin’ Trygon).  Night Scythes crashing and burning like Dark Eldar Raiders.  Warriors’ inability to drop high-priority targets within 12".

Things I liked: Phaeron Lucifer granting the Relentless rule to his unit.  Tomb Blades with particle beamers.  Crypteks with eldritch lances.         

So next time, more guns, and better guns.  I’ll count the Warriors as Immortals with tesla carbines to replicate being Relentless; I’ll bring more Tomb Blades; and I’ll re-proxy the models I was using for Scythes as Doom Arks.  And I’ll be smarter in my deployment.

Posted  May 2012
 

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Fighting Tigers:
Codex <> Tactics <> Gallery <> Allies and Enemies <> Tales of the Tigers

Other Pages:
Main <> What's New <> Site Index <> The Tiger Roars <> Themed Army Ideas
Events and Battle Reports <> Campaigns <> Terrain  <> FAQ <> Beyond the Jungle