Fight Club – Blood Angels Vs. Thousand Sons

In this episode of fight club we have a narrative battle between the blood angels and the thousand sons. For this battle we used a custom scenario designed by my buddy Matt who was to command the sons.Fight Club

ECHOES OF WAR: The Second Battle for Signus Prime

Compelled by his never-ending crusade to unlock the secrets of the universe; Ahriman and his cabal have infiltrated the blockade around Signus Prime. As they scan the planet their results return a lone comm beacon; still active since the Heresy. Upon closer inspection, the beacon is inside a lone structure with markings belonging to the Blood Angels; smiling to himself, Ahriman knows anything that would keep the Sons of Sanginius on this planet is indeed a prize worth fighting for…

THE BATTLEFIELD

Deployment Map

PLACE PRIMARY OBJECTIVES

After setting up the terrain, the Blood Angel’s player places a total of 3 Primary Objectives; one of those objectives must be centered in the Blood Angel’s deployment zone. The remaining two Primary Objectives must be no further than 12” away from their deployment zone.

FIRST TURN

The player controlling Ahriman’s army has the first turn unless the enemy player can Seize the Initiative.

GAME LENGTH

The mission uses Variable Game Length.

VICTORY CONDITIONS

At the end of the game, the player who has scored the most Victory Points wins the game. If players have the same number of Victory Points, the game is a draw.

PRIMARY OBJECTIVE

At the end of the game, the player controlling Ahriman’s army receives 1 Victory Point for each enemy unit that has been completely destroyed and 3 bonus Victory Points if he, or a Thousand Sons unit containing a sorcerer is in control of the central Blood Angels Objective.  At the end of the game, the Blood Angel’s player scores 3 Victory Points for each Objective Marker that he controls.

SECONDARY OBJECTIVES

Slay the Warlord, First Blood

MISSION SPECIAL RULES

Night Fighting, Deep Strike, Reserves.

Readied for Battle: Each unit in Ahriman’s army may roll to ignore the effects of Night Fighting- on a 5+ they fire as if the Night Fighting rule was not in effect.

The Origins of the Thirst: So strong is the memory of the original outbreak of the Red Thirst; each time a Blood Angels squad fails a Leadership test from shooting, they must move towards the nearest enemy unit instead of towards their own board edge. Fearless units must still check to see if they succumb to the Red Thirst. In melee, treat all Blood Angels as Fearless for the purposes of Leadership checks.

On to the lists!

Blood Angels:  I built this army with a very strong sanguinary guard presence, all modeled as “stone angels” (as from Dr. Who). With the new Golden Host formations this gave me the ability to disordered charge off the deep strike, mitigating one of the crucial problems up until now with the list.

Combined Arms Detachment ba-army

Sanguinary priest – melta bombs, the angel’s wing
Sanguinary priest – melta bombs, jump pack

5 sniper scouts
5 close combat scouts

5 devestators (4 missile launchers)
5 devestators (4 missile launchers)
5 devestators (4 missile launchers)

Golden Host formation

Dante
5 sanguinary guard – 2 axe, 2 sword, 1 power fist,
5 sanguinary guard – 2 axe, 2 sword, 1 power fist,
5 sanguinary guard (dante goes here) – 2 axe, 2 sword, 1 power fist, 2 infernus pistols

Golden Host formation:

The Sanguinor
5 sanguinary guard – 2 axe, 2 sword, 1 power fist
5 sanguinary guard – 2 axe, 2 sword, 1 power fist

2,000 points

Thousand Sons (I’ll turn the text over to Matt here!): I’m a big fan of the lore behind the Horus Heresy especially where it connects with my favorite legion, the Thousand Sons. While the Thousand Sons didn’t fight in the original Battle of Signus Prime, I figured it’d provide a pretty cool backdrop for a battle with Shannon’s Blood Angels. Thousand Sons were the first army I ever played way back at the beginning of 3rd edition and I just recently re-did the entire army in a pre-Heresy color scheme so I can use them in either 30k or 40k. Anyhow, enough intro; on to the list!

Combined Arms Detachment tsons-army

HQ: Ahriman

Troops:
6x Thousand Sons – Rhino
6x Thousand Sons – Rhino w/ Dirge Caster
8x Thousand Sons – Rhino (Ahriman went here)

Elites:
Ferrum Infernus Dreadnought – Twin-Linked Lascannon, Missile Launcher
Ferrum Infernus Dreadnought – Twin-Linked Autocannon, Missile Launcher

Fast Attack:
Infernal Relic Fire Raptor – Malefic Ammunition (Heavy Bolters)

Heavy Support:
Infernal Relic Predator – Plasma Destroyer Turret, Heavy Bolter Sponsons
Infernal Relic Sicaran – Heavy Bolter Sponsons, Malefic Ammunition
5x Havocs – 4x Autocannons

Fortification: Bastion – Void Shield

Psychic Powers:
Ahriman:  Smite, Psychic Shriek, Doombolt, Infernal Gaze
Athanaean Sorcerer (Green Robe):  Tzeentch’s Firestorm
Pyrae Sorcerer (with Ahriman):  Breath of Chaos
Raptora Sorcerer (Grey Robe):  Doombolt

2,000 points

Pre-battle thoughts

Blood Angels: Well I have to survive a full two turns of Matt’s shooting before any help is going to arrive.   That means hunkering down out of LOS and going to ground for as good of a save as I can. I know when that fire raptor arrives it’s going to be ripping huge chunks out of my army and I have no real anti-air to stop it. I also have zero psychic defence and Matt’s got a lot of psykers, all with witchfires that have AP2 in large supply. Also by the scenario, he has the possibility of 19 points (14 Kill points, the three point objective, first blood and warlord.   I have a possibility of 11 (three objectives and the two secondaries). But I have the close combat game locked down extremely well. If I can charge them, they’ll drop! And as soon as those psykers go down, he loses a lot of his power.

Related Reading  Mission: Attack and Defend v1.2

Thousand Sons: Ahriman will be required to nab a power from Malefic in order to make the list not illegal as otherwise I’d have to include Abbadon or a Warpsmith to be the Technomancer. Thankfully since he is a sorcerer and since the FAQ can take Malefic powers he’s all set to go, he just may never cast it! I know Shannon is bringing a LOT of Sanguinary Guard, that much 2+ armor is enough to make any CSM player pause but I’m hoping that I’ll be able to turn the tide during the Psychic phase.

Deployment

 

Turn One

I attempt to seize but it just wasn’t meant to be. I need to hit the dirt and pray for deliverance I guess! The thousand sons advance and hug cover given I’ve still got three squads of devestators on the field who can go to town on rhinos. The dreaded psychic phase is a non issue as he’s out of range. Shooting is absolutely terrifying though, with the havocs and lascannon dread getting to ignore night fighting this turn. I make the majority of my cover saves and lose two devestators out of each squad. They pass their leadership to stick around.

Onto the Blood Angels’ turn. Fear my mighty devestators!   Plink plink. Not one pen. Not one glance. Absolutely nothing. Eek!

Turn Two

Emboldened by my lack of firepower, the fire raptor comes in. Oh no, I was really hoping for that one turn of reprieve. The sons continue to advance into range, bearing down on the objectives. The only psychic power that reaches is doom bolt, and it isn’t able to kill a scout, given his fervent devotion to the emperor (and his hugging cover for his life!).   Matt’s shooting is pretty brutal.   I lose a devestator squad for first blood. Another squad hits the ground to have one lone missile launcher live. The scouts are shot down to two left.   It’s looking pretty grim for the Blood Angels. There’s a dozen models on the board. But they’ve been praying hard these two turns and their faith has been answered!

My turn two, everything comes in. Five squads of sanguinary guard, with priests, Dante and every vampire’s favourite cheerleader the Sanguinor cheering everyone on! I know I need to hit these charges because I’m absolutely getting pummelled by the shooting. The relic predator and sicaran are top of my list to die, and I have to ground Ahriman’s rhino. So I get really aggressive with my deep striking, which for the most part (one squad goes wide) pays off.

Dante and friends melta the sicaran off the board. The devestators are snapping anyway so they fire up at the raptor to no avail. I’m able to plink a hull point off the dread and Ahriman’s rhino… but can’t wreck it so no charging those tasty sorcerers (cue sad trombone)

One squad of sanguinary guard and the sanguinor charge the relic pred and kill it. (those plasma blasts were going to wreck my stone angels for certain if I didn’t take it out).   I charge the dreadnought, losing an angel to overwatch but the power fist makes short work of him.

I wreck Ahriman’s ride so he has to deal with me here rather than make his way to the objectives.   But I know the next psychic phase is going to hurt something awful.

 

Turn Three

The fire raptor bears down on the Devestator squads. Psychic phase sees me lose four out of one sanguinary guard squad plus one in another.   Yikes! The lone devestator who was taking pot shots gets blown away easily. The squad with one of my priests is likewise obliterated. Another sanguinary guard unit goes to three.   Matt’s got four Kill Points now and we’re truly at the point where I need to start eliminating big threats quick, or he’ll wrack up enough Kill Points to get an uncatchable lead, even if I hold the objectives (which isn’t looking assured either!)

The Blood Angels fire a hail of angelis bolt pistols and four thousand sons turn to dust… well more dusty I guess? The Sanguinor goes man-mode and charges the havocs, wiping them out. Dante’s squad makes the charge into Ahriman’s unit and kills both the squad AND Ahriman! This was exactly what I needed in order to stop the psychic onslaught.

 

Turn Four

Things have suddenly gone a bit south in the midfield for the sons, so Matt knows he needs to hit those objectives, and mop up some easy kill points. There’s a lone scout in camo cloak hiding, as well as a lone sanguinary guard that are pretty easy targets, as well as a few depleted squads and some squishy scouts in the backfield.

Related Reading  Battle Report: Chaos vs Tyranids

The chaos forces push up near the objectives, but shooting is lacklustre and only the lone Sanguinary Guard ends up dying! (that single scout continued to lay on ground praying). Matt’s up to five kill points and first blood. He’s going to need a couple more to make this a lock, and tie up that central objective for the three point swing.

The three Devestators left, who have done exactly jack squat all game decide they’re going to continue shooting up at the fire raptor. Matt chooses not to jink (it’s only three missiles needing 6’s then 4’s) and eats a glance and a penetrating hit for his trouble. Dante’s squad meanwhile blows up a rhino full of sons and charge it wiping them out.

On the opposite flank, the rhino finally went down and the juicy contents were in charge range of a group of sanguinary guard as well as the Sanguinor. Charging in was met with a bellowing challenge from the Thousand Son Sorcerer. Armed with a power axe he dared the Sanguinor to take him on. Mr. Big Wings wasn’t going to back down and took this on with the arrogance only a sparkly vampire can muster. After a flurry of swings however, the sorcerer made EVERY invulnerable save. The strike back inflicted two wounds on the Sanguinor, who in turn made BOTH his saves!

Meanwhile the fists of fury do nothing to the dreadnought, and one of the dusty warriors punches a Sanguinary Guard to death (seriously, this happened!). The Sanguinary guard axes fell on the sons, but they made ALL the invul saves. Rah-Ro Shaggy…. Rah Ro indeed Scoob.

 

Turn Five

Obviously impressed by the Thousand Sons ability to beat up Sanguinary Guard in combat, the chaos gods decided to reward them with some excessively depressing luck. The fire raptor managed to inflict zero casualties. The Sanguinor wins his challenge by killing the sorcerer and two of his friends. The power fist smashes the dread to bits (who in his explosion kills another Sanguinary Guard!)

The Blood Angels mop up the ground troops and there is literally the fire raptor left.   What’s a chaos lord to do at this point?

last-stand

 

Turn Six

The fire raptor decides that the best way forward to glory is by going man-mode. Sure he could have played it safe and tried to get another kill point or two by playing keep away and hoping for turn seven. Nah, that was no way to end this! Matt hovered on an objective and opened fire into the teeth of the enemy! Damn you and your corpse Emperor he screamed!

But unfortunately the fire raptor was unable to score any kill points, and Dante rewarded him with a nice fiery melta shot to the face.

End Score

Blood Angels: 9 points objectives + warlord

Thousand Sons: 5 Kill points + First Blood

Post-game thoughts

Blood Angels: I thought I was done in the early game.  Before my reserves came in I was very close to getting butchered.  Matt wracked up some kill points quite quickly and I thought he would get to an uncatchable level before long, especially once he had first blood in the bag.  Thankfully though, once the sanguinary guard got to grips with the Thousand Sons, they were able to turn the tide.

Thousand Sons: Man, I really thought I had him there for a second! What a great game; the mission was really thematic and I feel like the game itself played along with certain key moments to really amp up the excitement of the special scenario. Shannon’s a great opponent and I know I’m always going to have a good time win or lose. Game wise, I went in not expecting much from the Thousand Sons; as much as I love them, once they get touched by anything they just evaporate. I had some decent luck with the units from IA:13 and honestly without them the Sons would have never had a chance of winning. I feel like if Ahriman’s unit would have held up for another turn I could have turned the tides a bit more, but that loss sealed my fate, there was only so much the Fire Raptor could do on his own. Those darn scouts just refused to die! So it seems for today at least, the Emperor does protect.

  • Great report, and that looked like a hell of a game.

    Looked like he had you early, but you stuck to your plan and it paid off. Him losing Ahriman so early was brutal, but it’s just what you needed to do.

    • jack shrapnel

      thanks! Yeah it was rough at the beginning… if those reserve rolls didn’t work out it would have been game over I think. His psychic power was just so overwhelming (well next to my ZERO defense at least!) I knew that if Ahriman didn’t die, it was going to be all over for me, same with that relic pred.

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