Saturday, August 30, 2014

IG Victorious! Traitors Cleansed!

In yet another marathon hobby and gaming session, I managed to put in a couple of games, assemble a couple of test figures for my next IG army, have dinner with the guys, and watched some amazing games being played. By the time I got home, I was completely exhausted.

The big game for the evening was my Brandenberg IG fighting off a Khorne army in a Cleanse and Control maelstrom mission. It was the first time ever that my army deployed 2 Hellhounds, and I was really excited to try out my new old toy, freshly painted the night before. I'll share just a brief overview of the game, as my opponent agreed to do a batrep, and I love his batreps.

The Khorne army looked fearsome, with a Lord mounted on steed and with all kinds of wargear, 3 favoured Berzerker squads, a Land Raider, 2 Rhinos, a Heldrake (thankfully with the Hades autocannon), 3 deep-striking Helbrutes with multimeltas and a guest appearance by a Mastery Level 3 Nurgle Daemon Prince. I had my favorite infantry force of 108 men, supported by 4 Leman Russ (1 Exterminator, 1 Executioner, 2 Plain Jane Russes), 2 Hellhounds and a Vendetta.

From the get-go, it did not look good for the Brandenbergers. I had deployed defensively, being overly-concerned about his deep-striking Helbrutes. The problem is, most of the objectives were either in no-man's land or in enemy territory. Either way, it was going to be quite a hike for my troopers. And Khorne got first turn.

The first couple of turns didn't do anything to boost my confidence, as my shooting was ineffective (it took almost the entire army to wiped out a pack of daemon beasts, though I did get First Blood), and both my assault platoons on my flanks were charged by the enemy - left flank by a squad of Berzerkers, right flank by the Khorne Lord himself. To add to the tactical errors I had made, the dice were not cooperating either. I would roll low to hit and to wound, but when in Turn 3 I wanted to sacrifice my conscripts by making the Priest accept the Khorne Lord's challenge, the Priest actually made all his invul saves!

But he must have known something was afoot, as suddenly fortune made a 180 flip. The Khorne Lord, having slain my Priest in my turn, was mocked by his fickle gods and was turned into a Spawn (which is much easier to kill). At the same time, over on the other flank, the other Priest (who also spoiled my plans by refusing to die at the right time), killed the Khorne champion in a challenge. Then everything started going the IG way - the Vendetta blowing up his Land Raider in a single volley, my 2 Hellhounds freely ranging on the battlefield to claim objectives (the Hellhounds' speed contributed more to the victory then their shooting actually), the late arrival of the Helbrutes, which gave me time to prepare for them, and they landed into more or less ambush positions.

The IG finally won 9-7. It helped that I got First Blood (the whole army gets credit for this one), Slay the Warlord (the Exterminator got this one) and LineBreaker (Hellhound, of course). And as I mentioned above, the Hellhounds managed to rush around and throught the enemy lines to score objectives. Of the 6 Maelstrom Objectives the army scored, 3 were done by the Hellhounds. The battle was really bloody and losses were heavy, with a 70% casualty rate amongts my infantry. No vehicles were lost. The Khorne army survived the battle with only an immobilized Helbrute, the Heldrake, the Daemon Prince and 4 Berzerkers left standing.

Before that game, I managed to play another game with my Alaitoc Windriders Eldar army against an Imperial Knights force. I just realized now that it was the first time I played my Eldar in 7th ed, and the first time I've ever played against Imperial Knights. I was obviously intimidated, facing off against 3 mini-titans that were supported by a platoon of IG infantry, IG command squad, stormtroopers and a Vendetta. But the Eldar are super-deadly, and nearly wiped out the mon-keigh army, leaving only a single Knight alive at the end of the game, for minimal losses. I was quite amazed, actually.

And my next IG project, the 2nd Denerair Highland Regiment, started with the assembly of the very first figures, one of which shown below. I'll be doing a test paint job soon, hopefully in time for the next update.

In the meantime, keep rollng them dice ...

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Never too HOT.

Just finished my mini-restoration project to save this once dilapitaded gem of a model. Of course, I didn't think to take a before-and-after thing, but I managed to scrounge up a very grainy old file pic from the original Spunkybass Place site.

I got this fearsome flame tank from the original owner some years back, along with a bunch of Russes. They were formerly soldiering in a little-known Imperial Guard regiment called the Sovetskii Corporate Guard. The Sovetskii Corporate Guard fought alongside my Brandenbergers in many a campaign back during the fierce wars in and around the Balau Sector.

After a few bloody battles in the current edition with the current codex, I just felt that the Hellhound has actually increased in its awesomeness, and just wished I had more than one. Which of course, I did. I had been putting off restoration work on the old Hellhound because there was really quite a bit to do - it was missing reactive armor bits, the tracks were all over the place and had to be stripped and completely redone, and of course, there was the messy bit of stripping and repainting it.

Of course, like most projects, what had been put off for years was actually achieved in a couple of nights. It took a bit of thought to figure out how I painted my other Hellhound (which was done in 2000), but I managed to more or less match the paint-job. A couple of dry decal numbers from the awesome Archer Fine Transfers range finished it.

Hellhound #8 proudly joins the original #7 in their batllefield role of cleansing heretics, xenos and traitors in support of my Assault Platoons. Now all I need to do is to field them against the next vic... um ... awesome great cool opponent.

Keep them dice rolling ...

Friday, August 22, 2014

Back In Action!

After 3 amazing weeks of exploring the deserts, valleys, farmland, mountains, lakes, forests, coastline, small towns, big cities and meeting some great people and food, it's back to Hobby Night! I haven't picked up a brush in over a month, so it was 100% dice-rolling glee, interspersed with some more great food and chats with the awesome Legio people.

Faizal had contacted me beforehand and said that he would like to have a couple of games of Flames of War with his US 82nd Airborne, in preparation for the Legio Malaysia Market Garden campaign coming up in October. We were both a bit rusty with the rules, having last played it in the very-FOW year of 2012 (I think we wrapped at least 2 campaigns, plus a league, or something like that), and while my favorite has always been the British infantry company, it was a good chance to try out my German infantry company.

I arrived at the Forge early, and managed to get a FOW game in with Alvin. We played a quick 1000-pt battle, his Battle of the Bulge-themed US Armored Company against my Grenadiers. It's quite amazing how quickly we were able to relearn the game mechanics (with a lot of pauses to refer to the rules), but the battle was one-sided, as his Confident-Trained Shermans went in unsupported and got massacred by the Confident-Veteran Grenadiers (not to mention the able support of the PaK40s battery and StuG platoon).

Amin came in with a scary 40k Deathwing army. At 1850pts, the army was led by Belial at the head of 7 Assault Terminators. A Librarian led another 7 Terminators, and there was another squad of 7 Terminators. They were supported by 2 Dreadnaughts with autocannons, and a squadron of 2 Land Speeder Typhoons. My 1850pt Tzeentch army was led by Ahriman, with 2 favored squads of Thousand Sons, a Land Raider, a Rhino, a Predator, a Heldrake, a Defiler, Lord Ka'Kaa the Lord of Change and a pack of Pink Horrors.

We played Purge the Alien - it was the first time I played an Eternal War mission in 7th ed, having been really loving the Maelstrom missions. The battle was hard- and closely-fought. The Deathwing aggressively Deep Striked into my lines. I was able to wipe out one squad quickly with a combination of firepower and charging with the Defiler and Lord Ka'Kaa. Ahriman's squad managed to kill most of the Librarian's squad, but was in turn charged by Belial's squad. Thanks to his Chaos compulsion to always challenge, he took on Belial. Thanks to Invisibility, he managed to last longer than expected, but when he finally fell, it was curtains for his squad too.

Seeing this, the rest of my army kept far away from Belial and his scary squad, and went on to destroy everything else on the table, before sniping at Belial's squad at range. The game ended with the Deathwing left with only Belial and one Assault Terminator left. I lost Ahriman, the Predator, a squad of Thousand Sons and 5 Pink Horrors.

After dinner break, Faizal and I set about for our appointed FOW battle. 1000-pts of his Fearless Veteran US 82nd Airborne vs 1000-pts of my Confident Veteran Grenadier Company. I had split my command into 3 parts - the PaK40s and 2nd Platoon dug in and covering the enemy objectives, while 1st Platoon and the Pionier platoon was to advance through town towards my objective on the right in a feint attack. The StuGs would barrel up the left flank in the real attack to seize my left flank objective.

His parachute infantry platoons proved incredibly reselient and tough troops, and soon my feint attack ground to a halt in the center of town - my troops forced to hold up in the church. The StuGs had to be diverted from their mission to lend MG support for my suppressed infantry. After a punishing mortar bombardment, the paras charged the church, pushing both 1st Platoon and the Pioniers back into my lines. I sent in 2nd Platoon to shore up the defenses while the rest recover. But the paras did not let up, and proceeded to follow up their advance, destroying the Pionier platoon, and routing both Grenadier platoons. I was lucky that my company morale held, and the StuGs were able to capture my objective in the knick of time.

That was a great game and simply an amazing reintroduction to FOW. I really need to paint up my German mortar platoon -any form of artillery support is just too necessary (as my British infantry know very well - they have a nice 25-pdr battery to support them).

Anyways, it's back to the hobby table. Hope to finish up a recovered OOP Hellhound for the Brandenburgers. Keep them dice rolling.