The Arena Campaign

Discuss both Auxiliary, Allied and Aliens tactics
X-FuryEagle-X
Shas'La
Shas'La
Posts: 97

The Arena Campaign

Post#1 » May 03 2014 09:27

Hello ATT,

I'm not sure if this is the right place for this thread, if not then Mods please point me in the right direction! Thank you to the few of you who responded to my thread over on the Cadra Building forums and helped me to tweak my army list for the up-coming campaign. My final list can be found here.

Entry is now closed, no further participants may join and no changes may be made to army lists, no changes at all. Warlords are now set as well. This campaign will be played out quite slowly, as each pair of opponents has 4 weeks to find a time to meet and play and report the result. If everyone meets sooner, then we'll progress through the rounds sooner.

Once my opponent is decided I will receive his army list and I will post it in this thread, along with my planned strategy, and ask the community here at ATT to help me identify what my target priorities should be. There are some armies playing that I have fairly limited experience playing against, so all suggestions and advice will be gratefully received.

So to get started, here is the fluff background for the campaign:

***********


For long eons of the Imperium's history it was myth. Tales told of ships being snatched from space and vomited out in the skies above a strange planet, surrounded by the ships of a dozen hostile alien races locked in bitter battle. A planet filled with ancient dead ruins and the crashed wrecks of thousands of starships. A hundred different races vying for control of the chaotic, battle-scarred landscape. And just when the imperial survivors thought all was lost, a gateway opening up, and hurling them to some far flung corner of the galaxy in relative safety.

For Millenia it was regarded as a fairytale.

Then in M36, an Explorator fleet found it, and cataloged its location.

Nurn V, Located in the far galactic north, most unusual - and most stable - warp anomalies in the galaxy. The area within the orbit of Nurn V's outermost moon is riddled with stable warp gateways - tunnels through space and time, leading all over the galaxy. Even the planet's surface is riddled with such tunnels - these smaller openings leading not to open space but to the surface of other planets.

The most common of these tunnels are the "rabbit-holes" - stable but outward only, depositing anything that enters it to a specific far flung location across the galaxy. Second most common are the "Maw-holes" which come and go without warning. Some sucking ships and other objects from remote parts of the Galaxy and vomiting them into orbit of Nurn V. Others which snatch up those same ships and spew them back into random galactic locations.

The rarest, largest and most powerful of the tunnels are the three "Eyes". They only open for minutes at a time and might go for months without opening, but each opens within a specific region of the galaxy every time - drawing in ships and debris from a great distance and spewing them into Nurn V's skies.

The most feared - the "Bale Eye" opens onto a storm-wracked region of the nightmarish eye-of-terror - each time it opens it could spew fleets of chaos space marines, legions of warp entities, pure necrotic warp energy, or sometimes (mercifully) nothing at all.

The second - the "Green Eye" opens deep in the heart of the Ork empire of Octavius. For long centuries it has spewed fleets of confused but delighted greenskins into the chaotic skies of Nurn V. In recent years it has also begun to spew swarms of Tyranid bio-ships - sometimes mid battle with the ork fleets.

The third - known as the "Silent Eye" used to be mostly inactive - for many Millenia it spat out nothing but the occasional wandering ship. In the last few centuries however, it has become ill-named - regularly spitting out Tau patrols and even attack fleets.

It is not known how old the Nurn system is, or if the space holes are natural or artificial. The robust but shattered ruins on its surface are unimaginably old - possibly far older than Eldar civilisation and perhaps even as old as that of the Necrons. There are those who whisper that the world's warp holes were the template on which the ancient Eldar webway was modeled.

Whatever its origins, none can deny it's unimaginable tactical value. A force that managed to claim Nurn V and build a stable garrison there might be able to map the most stable of it's warp-tunnels. Armed with such knowledge, that force would be able to deliver fast response fleets to several hundred locations across the galaxy. Other forces might use the tunnels to explore the galaxy, launch sudden strikes against unsuspecting foes, or even choose a random location for a mighty Waaagh!

For this reason, Nurn V has become one of the most contested worlds in the galaxy. It's surface and skies are constantly awash with battle - the conflict fueled by a steady influx of opposed forces snatched from across the galaxy. Every now and then some race gains the advantage for a while and builds fortified settlements and static defences - but never for long. The planet is contested by the galaxy's major races, and is constantly changing hands. But no-one ever really owns it.

And despite all the Adeptus Mechanicus has learned and cataloged about it, among the common soldiers of the Imperium it is gently slipping back into the realm of legend. Nurn V - the eternal battleground. To most, known only as...

Arena

User avatar
Nevar
Shas'Vre
Shas'Vre
Posts: 663

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#2 » May 03 2014 03:47

I am surprised no one else has commented on this.

I find it's always a good idea to stir up some background for your campaigns to help put you in the setting. Narrative campaigns are so much more fun than strictly competitive mechanical play.

I feel your fluff for this planet or system fits well into the background as we know it, and I could really picture the planet in my mind's eye. Looking for more from this thread, good work.

X-FuryEagle-X
Shas'La
Shas'La
Posts: 97

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#3 » May 05 2014 07:00

Thanks Nevar!

OK, so on to the next phase, the rules of the campaign which have just been published.

Before each round the organiser will publish what the deployment, mission and special rules will be.

For Round 1, it will be Purge the Alien with a Dawn of War deployment and special rules will be Night Fighting and Reserves.


The overall scoring for this mission will be as follows:

1 Mission Point is earned for each unit destroyed (including Independent characters and transport vehicles). Units fleeing or not on the field at the end of the game count as destroyed.

1 Mission Point is earned for completing secondary objectives Slay the Warlord and Linebreaker. (Note: Not first blood).

You must score at least 3 more mission points than your opponent to win on mission points.

If the final points have a difference less than 3, compare points destroyed. If one player had more mission points than the other, they gain 50 additional points destroyed per mission point through this.
i.e., If you're up by 2 mission points at the end, you'd add 100 points onto your total destroyed. Or if you're up by 3 mission points, you win.



Overall league scoring for this campaign is as follows:

Difference in Mission Points greater than 4 - Winner gains 19 BP, Loser gains 1 BP.

Difference in Mission Points 3-4 - Winner gains 16 BP, Loser gains 4 BP.

Difference in Mission Points 1-2 (i.e. game was decided on points destroyed) - Winner gains 13 BP, Loser gains 7 BP.

Absolute Tie (Somehow) - 10 BP Each



OK so now I know everything there is to know about the first round except for who my opponent is and how my army will play! However, I do now know which armies are playing in this campaign, so I have listed them below along with my level of experience and exposure to each army type. Obviously for those armies I have very limited exposure and experience I'll be asking all of you good people here at ATT for all the advice and suggestions you can give!

So the armies with my exposure and experience levels are:

1) Tyranids (Very High)
2) Astra Militarum - I.G. (Very Limited)
3) Space Wolves with Clan Raukaan Allies (Moderate for Wolves - Limited for Clan Raukaan)
4) Salamanders (Moderate)
5) Dark Eldar (Very Limited)
6) Tau (This is my army, so very high!)
7) Eldar (Very High)
8) Orks (Very High)

So from that, I'm most unsure about the Astra Militarum and Dark Eldar. My usual playing group just doesn't field those armies, so it will be a new experience for me.

Thanks for reading!

X-FuryEagle-X
Shas'La
Shas'La
Posts: 97

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#4 » May 07 2014 06:08

Hello ATT,

So the fixtures have been announced for round 1 and wouldn't you know it, my opponent is playing Astra Militarum, quite literally my army of least experience! I had hoped to get a game against Orcs, Tyranids or Marines first up so that I could see how my new army list plays, but instead I'll have to grapple with a new army list and a new opponent all at the same time.

With that in mind, I am hoping the community here at ATT can help me out? I will put below my opponent's army list, my thoughts on target priority and strategy. I would be very grateful if anyone could confirm my approach or suggest changes to my strategy or target priorities. Thank you in advance!

The Astra Militarum List (apologies it is not in the ATT format):

Cadian 113th/609th, 7th company "Siegedogs"
HQ
CCS with Standard, 3 x GL, Tactical Auto-reliquary

Primaris Psyker with Force Sword Mastery 1

Priest with laspistol, ccw, autogun

Priest with laspistol, ccw, autogun

ELITES
Tempestus Platoon: (Squad 1 = 5 with 2 x Melta) (Squad 2 = 5 with 2 x Melta)

Ratlings: Squad = 5

TROOPS
Infantry Platoon 1: PCS with 4x Flamer, IS1 with Plasma, Plaspistol, IS2 with Plasma, Plaspistol

Infantry Platoon 2: PCS with 4 x Flamer, IS1 with Plasma, AC, IS2 with Plasma, AC, HWS1 with 3 x AC, HWS2 with 3 x ML (frag+krak)

Infantry Platoon 3: PCS with 4 x Flamer, IS1 with GL, IS2 with GL, HWS1 with 3 x HB

HEAVY SUPPORT
Leman Russ: Battle cannon, hull lascannon

Leman Russ: Battle cannon, hull lascannon

Leman Russ: Demolisher, hull lascannon

********

Again, my experience against this codex is very limited, but I have had a chance to look through the codex and have some idea of what this list can do.

Concerns:
1) The number of different squads! There's a lot of discrete smaller units and I will need to be careful about overkill.
2) Similar to the point above, I will need to be careful I get value for money with my marker lights. Cascading will be difficult if the squad is wiped out!
3) I'm not sure I can actually put out enough shots fast enough to destroy this army, so I will need to be quite strategic and assume I can only kill some of his army and choose appropriate targets.

Priorities
1) Those tanks throw out very big blast templates that can seriously hurt my battlesuits and troops alike. They have to go and fast.
2) The company command squad.
3) The snipers. I do not need some happy little sniper wiping out my Ethereal, or my marksman in my Sniper Drone squad. Bad news that is.

Strategy
1) The fusion suits sole purpose in life: To deep strike and wipe out big tanks. With 3 such tanks, this is their purpose in this list. Deep strike behind them and target rear armour. I am also thinking to do the same think with the Deathrain suits. The commander would likely be attached to the Fusion suits as they are more likely to give me the kills I need and also if with the Deathrains, that would likely put 4 marker light hits on a probably dead tank. This way, if the Fusions don't do the job, the Deathrains already have a marker light to follow.
2) Sniper Drones with their awesome range will go straight for his company command squad and try to snipe out key models, then go for those heavy weapon squads to silence those heavy weapons.
3) Fire warriors will all target the same unit if possible, silence those heavy weapons, or establish a beachhead for the Kroot to exploit.
4) Piranhas and their drones if desperate will target the rear armour of the tanks, but their main goal will be to get over the other side of the board, block line of sight for whole arcs of fire and take down as many guardsmen as possible along the way. The drones may even be worth assaulting with.

Any help that anyone can offer me, particularly surrounding target priorities and my strategy, I would be very grateful.

Thanks in advance!

EDIT
I have read the thread here which has been a great help in forming my strategy above.

User avatar
Nevar
Shas'Vre
Shas'Vre
Posts: 663

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#5 » May 07 2014 10:24

Advice.

Missile Pods instant kill heavy weapons in AM platoons. Three missile pod wounds remove three heavy weapon bases, and an average death rain shooting phase can do a lot more than that. The only issue is if he blobs the squads into a mass of men, but even then, remember shooting rules. Models are removed from the direction of fire, so piranhas can mass fire on one side of a blobbed platoon to open a gap in bodies for the missile pods to carve out the heavy weapon squads.

If he doesn't blob up, you can just remove the heavy weapon squads at your leasure. I always love it when AM players bring Heavy Weapon Squads. Those heavy weapons are much safer as part of other squads as upgrades, but people are tempted into the heavy weapon squads so the rest of their men can move. Hopefully he will keep them in small squads.

The shooting from AM is inaccurate at best with only BS3. However the Orders they can make use of can change that really quick. Number one priority should be his Company Command Squad. This squad cannot blob as far as I know, so again... missile pods instant kill everything in there with no saves. Platoon command is also a good target after the Company Command.

Tanks... yes the tanks. The main issue with the Tanks isn't that they have scary blasts, it's that those blasts ruin your primary heavy lifters. XV-8's will melt to those plates and thus they need to be destroyed quickly. A fusion drop is a good idea, and I usually see AM players either group up the tanks to cover each other's side armor, or mire them inside platoons of guardsmen. If he groups them up, they are waiting for a melta deep strike. If he bubble wraps them in troops, you will have a harder time deep-striking within killing distance. If you have target locks, try to kill at least two on the initial drop. Prioritize the Battle Cannon Russ first. While the Demolisher Cannon is scary, it's range is lower than the Battle Cannons, giving your armies a better chance of avoiding the range of the Demolisher.

Also, advice for your deep-striking fusion teams. I know it seems like suicide for them, but Leman Russ wrecks are great cover. If you destroy a tank or two, be mindful of your thrust move. Often you can keep the hulls of the dead tanks between the XV-8's and the bulk of enemy fire. This can save the suit team and allow them to become a serious problem for the enemy. If you 'explode!' the tanks... well have fun cowering in those ruins. Just be sure to always claim some cover against the return fire, especially if any of the tanks are still alive.

In my opinion your first priority targets are the Company Command squad on turn one, because the tank killers will not have arrived yet. Platoon Commands and opportunity heavy weapon squads are second. Starting when your reserves arrive the Battle Cannon Russes join the priority list.

In my opinion, the least scary things.

Tempestus Squads. These guys are slow, carrying short ranged weapons. If they try to march across the board at you, just avoid them or kill them. The Priests might join them, but meh.

Ratlings. Snipers are a pain yes, but this is only a squad of five. Could they pull off some rediculous game winning shots? Sure, but odds are not in favor of that event. Kill them if an opportunity shows itself, but I would not commit much battle planning to them.

Platoon Squads. These guys are only scary because they can claim objectives. If you keep your Firewarriors alive you will win the crap shoot trade of fire with them every time at range. Not to mention kroot. Worst case scenario, even XV-8's with drones can assault and overrun some guardsmen.

Primaris Psyker. He's only scary to Riptides and Iridium Commanders due to the force sword. More likely he will be using him to cast buffs on a blobbed up sea of guardsmen. Could be an issue, or might not play much of a factor. Either way, it the main threats are dealt with, he becomes an easy to mop up element.

User avatar
Mij'aan
Shas
Posts: 94

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#6 » May 07 2014 11:00

I genuinely like the fluff regarding the 'arena' - I am not sure if you wrote it or someone else, but it is good. This has inspired me to create fluff for my own upcoming campaign.

User avatar
Jochmann
Shas'Ui
Shas'Ui
Posts: 413
Contact:

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#7 » May 08 2014 06:46

The Tempestus Squad might be used to guard the tanks in the (vain) hope, you won't dare to deepstrike next to them. Do it nevertheless, you need to finish off those tanks.
As those Psykers will habe Divination, they might be scarier than expectet, enabling f.e. heavy weapon squads to hit much better.
Killing the command squads isn't this important, as they won't improve the shooting that much, since they can't twinlink the weapons anymore. Instead they give tank- and monsterhunter.

X-FuryEagle-X
Shas'La
Shas'La
Posts: 97

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#8 » May 09 2014 05:42

Thank you for the detailed advice Nevar and Jochman. And Mij'aan, the fluff was something a few of us discussed together, but it was my friend who actually wrote that segment. I will be writing some later segments though, so stay tuned!

Target priories seem pretty clear, command squad then tanks and heavy weapons/platoon command squads. Excellent. Though nobody has mentioned it specifically, I realised my targets for my dual plasma rifle suits may actually be a bit thin. I think they would be quite good at backing up the fusion suits, deep striking behind the tanks and taking shots at rear armour. If I do this, then I can possibly start with my deathrains on the board and cause some damage to his command squad early.

Please forgive my inexperience with AM, but the platoons, either in individual squads or platoons, am I right that you must kill every model (blob or multiple squads) to claim the victory point in Purge the Alien? While I may be able to snipe out every heavy weapon, to guarantee my survival, I need to be mindful of victory points and make sure I calm enough of those to win comprehensively.

I am starting to really look forward to this game, I greatly appreciate all of your suggestions and advice, many thanks. Once my opponent has confirmed a date we'll be all set to go!

User avatar
Mij'aan
Shas
Posts: 94

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#9 » May 09 2014 06:39

X-FuryEagle-X wrote:Please forgive my inexperience with AM, but the platoons, either in individual squads or platoons, am I right that you must kill every model (blob or multiple squads) to claim the victory point in Purge the Alien? While I may be able to snipe out every heavy weapon, to guarantee my survival, I need to be mindful of victory points and make sure I calm enough of those to win comprehensively.


Someone will have to correct me if I am wrong but smaller squads are still units and will grant you first blood and a victory point. At least, this is how I have always played it against IG. (And if this is wrong, my IG friend will be pleased to hear) - I am very sure it is correct.

User avatar
Nevar
Shas'Vre
Shas'Vre
Posts: 663

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#10 » May 09 2014 09:45

If he deploys them as separate squads then killing any one squad will be a 'killed unit'.

If he deploys them in a platoon blob, then the entire blob must be killed for it to count as 'killed'.

That is one of the best adaptability features of the platoons, and he can choose how to deploy them based on mission without even changing his list.

User avatar
Jochmann
Shas'Ui
Shas'Ui
Posts: 413
Contact:

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#11 » May 09 2014 10:53

Yes, but only with infantry squads. Both heavy weapon and special weapon squads can't do this and thus will be an excellent target for first blood.

X-FuryEagle-X
Shas'La
Shas'La
Posts: 97

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#12 » May 13 2014 05:18

Hello Everyone,

A short update for you all, here is the round 1 fixture in total:

Space Wolves Vs Dark Eldar (Already played, Space Wolves won by 4VP's, so 19 campaign points to Space Wolves and 1 campaign point for Dark Eldar)
Tau Vs Astra Militarum
Tyranids Vs Orcs
Marines Vs Eldar

I have managed to schedule my upcoming game for 2 days time, I'm looking forward to that game and will let you all know the result once played.

Thanks!

X-FuryEagle-X
Shas'La
Shas'La
Posts: 97

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#13 » Aug 14 2014 06:36

Hi ATT,

Unfortunately after my last post, I played the game as expected and then went away for quite a few weeks and wasn't home at all to continue. Life just gets in the way of a good plan sometimes.

To wrap up, I won my game against Astra Militarum 13VP to 7VP which was comprehensive, so Tau received 19 campaign points and AM received 1. The battle summary can be found here.

The campaign summary is as follows:

Space Wolves defeated Dark Eldar
Eldar defeated Salamander Marines
Tau defeated AM
The Orc player unfortunately withdraw from the campaign, so the Tyranid player had a bye in round 1.

The match ups for round 2 are:

Space Wolves Vs Tyranids
Tau Vs Salamander Marines
Eldar Vs AM
Dark Eldar have the bye.

I will post below (apologies in advance for the double post) the Salamander's list and my thoughts and will ask for any suggestions.

And finally, I believe there will be more Fluff coming soon that wraps up round 1 but it hasn't been finished yet. I'll be sure to post it once it is done. :D

X-FuryEagle-X
Shas'La
Shas'La
Posts: 97

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#14 » Aug 14 2014 07:04

Hello ATT,

Apologies for the double post, I wanted to do a summary post and then get into my next game.

I'm reasonably confident against marines as I've played against them a lot, however I've never played Salamanders, so I'm not sure of any special rules they may have or neat little tricks that I have to look out for. Any suggestions from the community here would be awesome along those lines of letting me know what to watch out for.

The game will be Big Guns Never Tire with a Hammer and Anvil deployment and secondary objectives in play, minus First Blood. There will be 4 objectives, 1 in the centre of each table quarter.

The Salamanders List (apologies it is not in the ATT format):

Adjudicators Space Marines
HQ
Captain with Artificer Armour, Storm Bolter, Storm Shield and The Teeth of Terra

ELITES
10 x Sternguard Veterans with 2 Combi-Meltas, Sergeant with Power Sword, Rhino with Dozer Blade

5 x Terminators with Assault Cannon, Sergeant with Power Sword

TROOPS
10 Tactical Marines with Flamer and Missile Launcher, Veteran Sergeant with Melta Bombs, Plasma Pistol and Power Maul, Razorback with Dozer Blade and T/L Lascannon

10 Tactical Marines with Flamer and Missile Launcher, Veteran Sergeant with Melta Bombs, Plasma Pistol and Power Maul, Razorback with Dozer Blade and T/L Lascannon

HEAVY SUPPORT
Land Raider Redeemer

Predator with Lascannon Sponsons and Lascannon

5 Devastators with 4 Heavy Bolters, Sergeant with Bolter

********

Concerns:
1) There are 3 transports and 2 heavy tanks in this list, so that is a lot racing across the board towards me. Deployment and first turn could count for something on this one.
2) There's a huge amount of Lascannons! That's a lot of instant death on my Broadsides and a big threat to my Skyray. My Crisis suits can jump shoot jump out of line of sight I hope, but I'm worried about losing 2 of my 3 heavy support units (scoring in this game) before they even fire a shot.

Priorities
1) Stopping the tanks from rumbling over the board towards me!
2) Not leaving myself open to deep striking nasty units.
3) Holding my objectives.

Strategy
1) Crisis Missile Team and Broadsides to take out the transports ASAP.
2) Crisis Fusion Team to go after the Land Raider. I'm not sure whether to put my commander with the Crisis Missile Team or with the Crisis Fusion Team. Also, not sure whether to deep strike the Fusion team and risk it not showing up for a few turns, or run them forward under cover on an intercept vector. After all, front vs rear armour won't matter against that Redeemer. Ideas anyone?
3) Fire Warriors really just throwing lots of shots down field, but I plan to shelter them and make sure I have at least a couple of squads to hold the objectives in my half late in the game. I realise that my Broadsides and Sniper Drones will probably be sitting on these objectives, but in a Hammer and Anvil deployment with no Devilfish I doubt I can get my Fire Warrior squads all the way to the objectives on his side and keep them alive.
4) Kroot to outflank and hide out until late in the game when they can hopefully race out and claim an objective in his table half.
5) The Skyray is my only really mobile heavy support unit, but to race it forward towards an objective would limit it's effectiveness. I plan to keep it at my end of the board and maybe make a late dash with it.
6) Plasma suits and/or Sniper Drones will likely have to pick off his devastators off an objective.

Any help that anyone can offer me, particularly surrounding target priorities and my strategy, I would be very grateful.

Thanks in advance!

X-FuryEagle-X
Shas'La
Shas'La
Posts: 97

Re: The Arena Campaign

Post#15 » Sep 21 2014 07:50

Greetings ATT,

The good news is that the Tau emerged victorious from their encounter with the Space Marines. The victory was a minor one only, largely because I did not focus enough on the objectives and too much on killing his units. At the end Tau had close to 1000pts left on the table and the marines had 5 vanilla marines. Unfortunately, that equated to 1 objective each. Oops. One group of Fire Warriors were planned to take a second objective for Tau but needed to run 2" and unfortunately rolled a 1. Naturally.

So you are all overdue for some fluff. The tournament organiser has been so good as to write a summary at the end of each round to summarise all of the results for each round. I have put the fluff summary of round 1 and round 2 below.

Round 1
After years of inactivity, warp space around Arena World flared into life once more as multiple vessels and forces were suddenly and violently transported into orbit around the planet, or, for those less fortunate, directly onto its surface. War broke out immediately as these scattered and disorganised armies struggled to gain a foothold on the planet's surface, continuing the vicious and brutal cycle of the war for Arena World.

In the desolate ruins of what was once a great city, a Dark Eldar raiding force launched a lightning attack on the small detachment of Arbiters Space Wolves who had established a defensive outpost amongst the ruins of their landing vessel. The vicious Dark Eldar struck with little warning, leaving the Space Wolves barely enough time to set up their defensive lines before they were within range. Using their barely functioning communications systems, the Space Wolves managed to call in support from their fleet in the form of a drop pod full of company veterans and a Stormtalon Gunship for close air support. The Dark Eldar moved quickly and mercilessly, but suffered heavy ground casualties as their transport skimmers moved to flank the Space Wolf position. Fortune was with the Space Wolves, as a pack of Wolf Scouts had been drawn to their beacon and arrived on the field of battle just in time to launch a rear attack upon the already scattered Dark Eldar force. As Stormtalon battled Razorwing Fighter in a close quarters dogfight, the Dark Eldar paid for every inch of their advance, withstanding a torrent of heavy fire from the Long Fangs. All elements of the Space Wolf force which dared venture outside the defensive perimeter were violently slain by the Dark Eldar raiders, but managed to spend their lives dearly, ensuring the safety of the heavy weapons. As day broke upon the battlefield, the impetus of the Dark Eldar attack faltered, and with a final hail of fire, the strike force was broken and made a speedy retreat, adding more burning wreckage to the already ruined cityscape. The Space Wolves consolidated their position in the ruined city, preparing to summon more reinforcements and bring their full weight to bear in the coming war.

Upon an open plain in one of the rural regions of the world, a drop force of the Adjudicators Space Marines made successful landfall and began to efficiently organise their armoured attack column. While this open terrain made their landing and organisation smooth, it left them open to a devastating surprise attack by the forces of the Craftworld Eldar, who had been in the area for a day already and were watching for enemy incursions. As the marines prepared to move out, the Eldar fell upon them with the speed and brutality which is so characteristic of their race. Even as the marines began to roll forwards and open fire, the Eldar sprung their ambush, as Striking Scorpions burst forth from the undergrowth and a towering Wraithknight fell upon the field of battle. Eldar skimmer vehicles screamed up the battlefield, making their presence known with volleys of devastating fire, putting the marines immediately onto the back foot. While the Space Marine firepower was formidable, they found the Eldar to be more resilient than they expected, and though the Scorpions fell to disciplined bolter fire, the marines were soon crawling from the burning wrecks of their vehicles and scrabbling to find cover from lethal volleys of shuriken fire. Even their mighty Land Raider was brought low by the devastating power of the Eldar Fire Dragons. As the battle crumbled around them, the Captain of the Space Marines and his Terminator honour guard valiantly threw themselves into the Wraithknight, causing grievous damage before making a tactical retreat from the field. As the dust settled and the smoke cleared, the Eldar swiftly dispatched the last of the marines and sped away once again; the ambush had been successful, but not without cost, and they could scarcely afford to throw lives away.

In the rugged hills of Arena World's barrens, a sizeable force of the Astra Militarum had recovered from its unpleasant entry and was picking its way through the area, attempting to re-establish contact with the rest of the Imperial forces. Unbeknownst to them, however, a T'au strike cadre had chosen these barrens as its base of operations after landfall, and was tracking their movement. Thanks to effective advance scouting from both armies, neither force made a critical blunder in their movement and they ended up facing off over the harsh terrain. Knowing the propensity of the T'au to stay at range, Imperial forces immediately began to advance across the field, laying down fire as their might battle tanks and heavy weapons began to pound the enemy with fire. The T'au response was swift and efficient, combining heavy firepower with outflanking elements of Kroot auxiliaries and Piranha skimmers to outmanoeuvre the foot troops of the Astra Militarum. As reinforcements poured into the ravines from both sides and the infantry war became increasingly bloody, both armies received much needed deep striking support. T'au battlesuits came down like a rain of death, laying waste to anything unfortunate enough to get in their way, while Imperial Tempestus units were deployed via grav chute to disrupt operations behind enemy lines. In an extraordinary turn of fortune for the Astra Militarum, the T'au commander and his bodyguard unit fell victim to their own hubris, as they attempted a particularly dangerous drop attack on a group of Leman Russ tanks and were annihilated before bringing their weapons to bear. Despite this, the T'au had pulled ahead in the bloodbath happening in the centre of the battlefield, and the majority of the Imperial infantry lay dead or mortally wounded to pulse fire. Deciding that they had inflicted a crippling blow and not wanting to suffer more casualties, the T'au strike cadre withdrew from the field, leaving the few remaining Astra Militarum units to lick their wounds and desperately search for hope.

While chaos reigned on the surface of Arena World, a far direr threat was nearing the system. The other races slaughtered each other in droves while Hive Fleet Brollachan descended upon Arena World, ready to assimilate and harvest the bountiful sums of living matter upon the planet. The lesser races could revel in their victories or despair in their defeats, but in truth, the War for Arena World had only just begun.

Round 2
With each race having only just established a foothold on the planet's surface, the war was still disorganised and desperate. As the Dark Eldar slunk into the shadows to call forth more reinforcements from the Dark City, the other forces struggled to maintain the small gains they had made. It was now, before any force could build up its strength fully, that Hive Fleet Brollachan entered the system and began the process of harvesting the planet - one which turned out to be quite a bit more difficult than it may have expected.

The first army to make contact with this new threat were the Space Wolves. Having consolidated their position in the large ruined city and established a command centre, the Space Wolves were preparing to launch scouting parties to gain control over the area around the city. Their preparations were cut short by the sudden appearance of a huge number of blips on their close ranged scanners. Preparing the base for defence, Rune Priest Twinfang ordered a drop pod to reconnoitre the area where the blips had originated. Following some disturbing voice communications from the drop squad, a huge wave of Tyranid assault organisms sprung forth from the darkness and began leaping towards the Space Wolves' position. A wave of smaller combat beasts, supported by larger beasts and even winged monstrosities, descended upon the Wolves as the sun rose upon the ruined city. However, the immense firepower brought to bear by the Space Wolves made itself known, cutting down xenos without number and stemming their seemingly unending tide. As Space Wolf scouts and aircraft assaulted the rear lines of the advancing force, their flanking fortifications were assaulted and brutally taken down by the attacking Tyranids. It was only the tenacity of the Space Wolf commanders and the bravery of their troops which prevented the position from falling to the relentless attack. A monstrous winged Hive Tyrant was the only beast to penetrate the inner defensive circle, which Wolf Priest Jorik Greymane managed to valiantly fend off to cover his allies. As the last beast was slain, the Wolves took stock of their significant losses and once again set about reinforcing their position in the city, which Twinfang had decided to name "Shadow's Bane" after their hard fought victory.

Battered but not beaten after their encounter with the Eldar, the Adjudicators set a course for the nearest urban area to regroup. Little did they know, the T'au had the same idea. As the marines rolled towards a long abandoned outpost, they realised that there were once again a step behind the xenos, and the T'au had already set up a forward base in this outpost. Seeing no option but to plough through, the marines began a devastating advance. The treads of their mighty vehicles crushed the terrain beneath them as they chugged towards the T'au lines, pulse shots and missiles bouncing from their armoured hulls. Despite firm resistance from the T'au battlesuits and vehicles, many marines disembarked at the front line and began to reap a heavy toll upon the T'au forces. However, as the marine offensive faltered, its vehicles destroyed and its squads damaged, reinforcements and reserves from the T'au force never ceased, leaking ever more troops into the marines' vulnerable rear, and shoring up the defences of the outpost itself. The Captain of the marines charged the ramparts of the T'au defence line alone, and singlehandedly wiped it clean of the xenos filth. The lack of support for the Space Marine offensive was telling though, and soon even the Captain fell, riddled with pulse rounds. The T'au began to advance over the bodies of their fallen, and the marine backline was unable to sustain the combined fire of the remaining T'au forces. The T'au had held the outpost well, but had taken severe losses. The marines, thwarted once again by xenos scum, retreated and considered their next move.

The Eldar forces roamed the planet, aiming only to surgically strike targets of necessity so as to maintain numbers and avoid needless casualties. The Astra Militarum, however, had no such concerns. The Eldar had sighted the Astra Militarum forces, now bolstered by additional drops and regrouped reinforcements, and decided it not worthy of their attention. Unfortunately for them, the primaris psyker accompanying the command squad of the Astra Militarum detected the Eldar's psychic presence and, in true zealous Imperial fashion, launched an all out attack upon the Eldar force. The Imperial Guard had the initiative and momentum, pushing the Eldar who were barely prepared for such a brash attack. Heavy firepower rained down on the Eldar forces, destroying grav tanks and decimating infantry squads as they struggled to mobilise and respond. In true Eldar fashion, however, their response was swift and brutal. Even as their left flank crumbled to the Imperial Guard attack, the mighty Wraithknight lead the charge on the right, pushing up through Imperial lines and leaving destruction in its wake. The Imperial forces dedicated much of their firepower to bringing down the towering construct, and while they inflicted severe damage they were unable to bring it down before it was upon them. While the Eldar infantry regrouped to counter attack, their heavy weapons rained death upon the Imperial positions, covering their creeping advance. Losing their initial impetus, the Astra Militarum were unable to inflict any more severe damage, and were routed by the Eldar forces. As the Astra Militarum retreated once more to regroup and await orders, the Eldar took stock of their losses and continued on. They were playing havoc with the forces of the Imperium, but it would remain to be seen if their part in the war would amount to more than just wanton destruction of anything which got in their way.

With the emergence of the Tyranid Hive Fleet, the face of the war had changed. The Space Wolves had beaten back their first encounter, but how would the other races fare with this dire threat? The Space Wolves, though successfully defending their city of Shadow's Bane, were pinned and seemingly unable to take more ground as they were encircled by the warring forces of the other races. As the T'au consolidated their grasp on outskirts and hamlets around the city, Eldar strike forces patrolled the barrens and plains, searching for targets of opportunity. Could the other races break through and claim their stake on the planet? Only time would tell.

Return to “Engaging the Alien”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest