My opponent Erik used a cityfight army (two platoons, penaltroopers, a sprinkling of heavy weapon squads, russ, demolischer, hellhound and a griffon and a company commandsquad with lord commisar and primaris psyker) and promptly rolled the cityfighter warlord trait, giving all his troops a 4+ save in ruins (we had agreed on ruins giving a 5+) and move through cover....
My army consisted out of my Hollan infantry company(see the post below), bolstered by a squad of grenadier veterans, two squads of penaltroopers and an Aegis Defence Line.
I lined up my defence line a few inches away from two objectives (the tomb and Yarrick's monument). With both 2nd and 3rd platoons behind the line, and first platoon in a ruined manufactorum behind them. The ratlings infiltrated in a large chapel ruin on the right flank, with the psykers in support. the sentinels and penal legions outflanked, the veterans and roughriders stayed in reserve.
Eric concealed most of his units in the ruins, taking advantage of their warlord trait. He concentrated his units on my right flank because he realised that trying to take the two objectives just inches form my defence line would be suicide.
|2nd platoon in position|
|3rd platoon in position|
|A clear view of the enemy....|
|Aglimpse of the 3rd Hollan, bravely gone to ground behind their Aegis line|
In the subsequent two turns my left flank spend their time slowly being blasted to bits behind their defence line, making good use of the gone to ground rule and the 'get back into the fight' order. Eric in the mean time made his way to the first objective on his side (Dante) and advanced upon the second objective located on my left flank. Luckily for me most of my reserves turned up on the 2nd turn and started to advance upon the last objective at full trot.
|The cavalry advancing upon the battle of macgrage monument (left) with Dante's collumns behind.|
|Ready the Charge.....|
The sentinels took 2 rounds to kill eric's hellhound that was wreaking havoc amongst my support units: the snipers, mortars and the psykers. My main force managed to stop Eric's armoured transport, forcing him to walk the last yards, and leave his command HQ guarding Dante's Collums. A withering hail of virtually all of Eric's available units destroyed my hopes of grabbing the objective, as both the penal legionaires and the rough riders disappeared in a hail of lasgun, missile, heavy bolter, and battlecannon fire.....In return an rather accurate shot of my master of ordnance, aided by some good mortar fire (before their untimely demise at the hands of eric's hellhound), wiped out his command HQ, getting me the Kill the Warlord objective. My focus on trying to kill Eric's units had me forgetting all about our true objectives, and although my second unit of penal troops and the veterans made a valiant try to dash towards some objectives, it was not to be, and the battle ended with Eric in a 'sollid' 3-2 victory point advantage.....
The initial setup was rather unfavourable to Eric: I had two objectives only a few inches form my lines. One turn of movement would have brought my two platoons forward, with enough manpower to weather a few turns of fire. Especially after I claimed the First Blood vp, Eric had no other choice to advance despite the massive firepower he was facing. His advancing unit's took horrendous casualties (just like mine), and probably wouldn't have lasted another turn, if only.....
This game showed that 40k is quite a reasonable game system if you're fighting with two non-fearless, non 3+ save elite armies. When fighting guard vs guard all the aspects of the game matter: cover matters, leadership matters, movement and assault matters, vehicles matter; every unit can contribute. Barrage weapons actually cause pinning and orders make all the difference. Only problem is that a turn takes forever with close to 300 infantry and half a dozen vehicles on the board.
I thoroughly enjoyed the battle, and next time, we'll start earlier, get our full 5 turns and I'll show those pesky camouflage wearing, Yarrick impersonating cultists what a real unit of guardsman can do....