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 Kabal of the Broken Mind: Battle Reports

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Slaven
Slave
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PostSubject: Kabal of the Broken Mind: Battle Reports   Thu Jan 15 2015, 19:59

New Dark Eldar player here! Anxious to get into the thick of the Faction, my friend was kind enough to let me borrow his stuff while I was still putting together the mass amounts I recently purchased. Not to delay, the lists were:

Dark Eldar
----------

HQ - Archon, Blaster, Haywire Grenades, Shadow Field, Webway Portal
Troop - Kabalite Warriors x10, x1 Blaster, x1 Splinter Cannon
/w Raider (Dark Lance, Splinter Racks)
Troop - Kabalite Warriors x10, x1 Blaster, x1 Splinter Cannon
/w Raider (Dark Lance, Splinter Racks)
Elite - Trueborn x5, x4 Blasters
/w Venom (Splinter Cannon)
Elite - Trueborn x5, x4 Blasters
/w Venom (Splinter Cannon)
Elite - Trueborn x5, x4 Blasters
/w Venom (Splinter Cannon)
Fast Attack - Reavers x3, x1 Heat Lance, x1 Cluster Caltrops
Fast Attack - Reavers x3, x1 Heat Lance, x1 Cluster Caltrops
Fast Attack - Reavers x3, x1 Heat Lance, x1 Cluster Caltrops
Fast Attack - Reavers x3, x1 Heat Lance, x1 Cluster Caltrops
Fast Attack - Razorwing Jetfighter (x2 Dark Lances)
Fast Attack - Scourges x5, x4 Haywire Blaster
Heavy Support - Ravager, x3 Dark Lance
Heavy Support - Ravager, x3 Dark Lance
Heavy Support - Ravager, x3 Dark Lance

Sisters/Inquisition/Imperial Knight
-----------------------------------
HQ - Cannoness
Troop - Battle Sisters, x2 flamers
/w Rhino
Troop - Battle Sisters, x2 flamers
/w Rhino
Elite - Dominions, x4 Melta Guns
/w Immolator /w MM
Elite - Dominions, x4 Melta Guns
/w Immolator /w MM
Elite - Dominions, x4 Melta Guns
/w Immolator /w MM
Heavy Support - Exorcist
Heavy Support - Exorcist
Heavy Support - Exorcist

HQ - Coteaz
HQ - Inquisitor, x3 Servo Skulls, ML 1 (Force Weapon, I assume)
Elite - Henchmen - Servitor /w Multi-Melta x3, Psyker, Acolyte /w Plasma gun x3
/w Chimera (x2 Heavy Bolter, Psybolt ammo)
Elite - Henchmen - Servitor /w Multi-Melta x3, Psyker, Acolyte /w Plasma gun x3
/w Chimera (x2 Heavy Bolter, Psybolt ammo)

Imperial Knight Errant (the super melta cannon one)

------------------------

The mission was thankfully Tactical Escalation. That name may be wrong, but it was the Maelstrom of War mission that you gained a number of Tactical Cards based on the turn number, so it allowed me to use the strategy of just reserving everything first turn except the Reavers who I could get out of LoS of everything and just wait for my reserves to come in and start wrecking things. That was the plan, anyways. Minus the Trueborn, my list was comprised of a majority of units and models I was hoping to test out since those are the ones I've decided to invest in for my Dark Eldar army first. His Warlord Trait was chosen for Conquerer of Cities, and I had Labyrinthine Cunning - since we get to choose which Trait we have for our Warlord as this is a Campaign game that just started at the beginning of the year.

A huge bonus for me was that we played Hammer and Anvil, so I was really able to divert a lot of his slow moving stuff (and dominion scout damage). This was pretty crucial to the battle, since his army was exactly what Dark Eldar are not good at taking down - A ton of lightly armored cheap vehicles with small squads inside, all of which can cause massive damage if approached too quickly. Dark Lances and Blasters may come in huge amounts for the Dark Eldar, but we definitely are going to want to focus all that damage potential at expensive, heavy hitters. Le sigh...

Unfortunately I had a long day last Thursday and forgot to take pictures, but I'll do my best to still deliver a modest battle report...

Deployment for my opponent was difficult. He won the roll off to go first and we both knew what that meant. He'd deploy, scout move forward, and then pass turn to me. Anticipating this, I deployed my four Reaver units behind LoS as much as possible. I was confident with my re-roll to night fight that they'd get a 2+ cover save, so there was little way he'd being able to take all of them down with his shooting that was all pretty close distance (minus the Exorcists). His Dominion squads were put forward, the line of them flanked by a Battle Sister Rhino on either side, and two Chimeras place behind those Rhinos for easy board coverage. His Exorcists, with their long range, took up the rear to cover his backfield. His Imperial Knight lined up against a wall, and his left board edge, that would grant a 3+ cover due to his warlord trait, covering all angles from any real attack. This is when he passed deployment to me and I tossed down only my Reavers. It was definitely a game changer, since there's a huge psychological element to having no idea which direction I'd be bring my force on from. I told him my Ravagers were coming on normally, along with the flier, but the rest were prepped to Deep Strike. My first turn consisted of me just passing (and amusingly I even drew the Hold the Line tactical card, which I easily had in the bag since all my units were within 12" of my board edge). His first turn consisted of repositioning chaotically to help protect every angle from wherever I decided to start bringing in my forces from the webway. He managed to pick up a VP from the card he drew (I believe it was a Secure Objective one).

My turn 2 had everything but 1 Ravager coming on. I decided on maneuvering everything heavily to assault his right flank (his side without his Imperial Knight) and managed to deep strike all of my Trueborn with little difficulty. I tossed my Raiders (with warriors inside) near his Dominion units fully expecting to volley into exposed ones once I started nuking down Immolators. I plopped my Archon+Scourges behind his Imperial Knight, know bunched up against the wall to prevent anything but an Exorcist or Knight from firing at them on his turn. The Archon took up the front, hoping to protect most of the Scourges from the IKs blast. I wasn't worried about his IK assaulting them, because I was already planning to turbo-boost a Reaver unit to block it out from them. Unfortunately I managed to scatter every Deep Strike roll, but I did luck out and manage to get each unit's scatter distance just enough to stop them from suffering a mishap. My Reavers moved up to shoot and engage the Dominions (the scariest thing he had with their ignore cover Act of Faith). I began shooting and took out 2 Immolators and a Chimera, and managed to strip the IK of 1 HP. Two reavers tried to go into combat against different Dominion squads but only 1 made it (I had +1 A from Combat Drugs, btw) in. I forgot about Fleet, though, so I'll try remembering that next time. I didn't managed to cause any wounds and we stayed locked in combat for about 4 turns (yeah, couldn't even Hit and Run - rolled a 6 each attempt).

He went and started shooting at everything. He took out 2 venoms on his second turn, and blasted down a lot of Trueborn pretty easily. His IK went forward after a unit of Kabalite Warriors from their destroyed Raider and his Exorcist got a bit lucky and took out all but 1 Scourge. Coteaz and his unit charged into some Trueborn, but amusingly wasn't able to do any damage. I managed to make two overwatch hits and killed two as they came in and another 2 in the assault. Coteaz didn't care, so they remained locked in combat.

I positioned a Reaver unit to assist the Trueborn against Coteaz, confident in my Cluster mines to take'em down. My Archon got a really lucky shot on the IK and took him down 3 hull points with a very well placed shot. With the IK down to 2 HP left, I opted to just start ignoring it, but I was already doing that for the most part anyways - just taking pot shots when out of range of other things. I stripped down the last Immolator and blew up the last Chimera. I was Ignoring the Exorcists, since while they are scary they aren't any serious threat to me since EVERYTHING is a serious threat to me. They were out of range of Ravagers, weren't good enough to deal with my flier, and a flamer is scarier than Assault d6 shots at any strenght and ap. My Reavers charged into Coteaz and managed to inflict 2 wounds with my HoW, and got another in assault. By that time the rest of the unit was dead anyways.

His IK took down a Ravager that I positioned to take an objective the previous turn (fully expecting to lose it to the Knight anyways). He took down my Scourge but was unable to hurt my Archon. More Trueborn were trashed, and every Reaver unit has been shot down by this point expect the one still trapped in combat. I was able to kill a Dominion Sister a full game turn on average, but he kept making his morale.

My flier decided to go off the board after he drew the objective to kill a flier. That wasn't a coincidence. I took down the last knight with a jink'd Ravager, and the huge explosion did nothing. My Ravagers were torn to shreds from the remaining dominion squad and two Exorcists gunning for them. The two flamer battle sister units were in the center of the board all game, as I was trying to keep them there with the little I had left with my Trueborn and venom.

After his shooting, I think it's his turn 5 and all I have left is a squad of Kabalite Warriors that just assaulted his last Dominion squad and my Archon that is in his final round of close combat with his last Inquisitorial Henchmen squad (which I charged on my last turn to gut his psyker for a VP card I drew). With everything locked in combat and everything too far to reach anything, I think he shot at my flier to no avail. We rolled for a turn 6 and in we went.

On Turn 5 I was winning handedly. I think I was at about 15 to 7. But by the end of Turn 6 he managed to position however he wanted since I was pretty much engaged with everything I had. He managed to get to 15 VP, but luckily I had crawled up to 17. The game did not go on to turn 7.

By the end, I had an Archon, my flier, and a handful of Kabalite Warriors and he had his three exorcists, his Cannonness, and a handful of sisters - one unit of which was in a Rhino. It was a bloodbath, and late game get pretty disastrous for me. It was a good first showing against a great opponent, though, and I'm very anxious for more!


Last edited by Slaven on Wed Jan 21 2015, 21:02; edited 1 time in total
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Sigmaril
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PostSubject: Re: Kabal of the Broken Mind: Battle Reports   Thu Jan 15 2015, 22:14

Great write-up, and with pictures, it would really shine Smile

Out of curiosity, why did you take the energy to strip the knight of 4 Hull points only then to decide to ignore it?
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PostSubject: Re: Kabal of the Broken Mind: Battle Reports   Fri Jan 16 2015, 08:47

I was largely ignoring the Knight to begin with. I dropped the Haywire Blaster Scourges with the Archon near it because it was a pretty safe position that only the Imperial Knight and a stray Exorcist could reach me with if he wanted to put in the effort to hurt my Warlord and my Haywires. An Imperial Knight just isn't scary to me. 1 shot, large blast or not, just means I'll probably Jink and keep my troops in their transport for awhile. But they start doing some serious damage when they get to your lines. 4 Hull points was about 270 points worth of energy in the one unit, and since I was pushing so hard on the flank opposite of his Knight I wanted to present a dangerous unit that he "needs to deal with" instead of just flooding all of his units on top of me. I was basically trying to deal with the IK just enough to keep it occupied.
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PostSubject: Re: Kabal of the Broken Mind: Battle Reports   Wed Jan 21 2015, 21:16

I managed to get in a 1,500 point game, and this time I used my own models. Pictures weren't forgotten - they just weren't possible. My girlfriend killed my phone charger with a vacuum cleaner, so I was left without a picture taking device. Anyways, LISTS!

Dark Eldar
--------------

HQ - Archon, Blaster

Troop - Kabalite Warriors x10, x1 Blaster, x1 Splinter Cannon
/w Raider, Splinter Racks, Night Shields, Dark Lance
Troop - Kabalite Warriors x9, x1 Blaster
/w Raider, Splinter Racks, Night Shields, Dark Lance

Fast Attack - Razorwing Jetfighter, x2 Dark Lances
Fast Attack - Reavers x3, x1 Heat Lance, x1 Cluster Caltrops
Fast Attack - Reavers x3, x1 Heat Lance, x1 Cluster Caltrops
Fast Attack - Reavers x3, x1 Heat Lance, x1 Cluster Caltrops
Fast Attack - Reavers x3, x1 Heat Lance, x1 Cluster Caltrops

Heavy Support - Ravager, x3 Dark Lance, Night Shields
Heavy Support - Ravager, x3 Dark Lance, Night Shields

Dark Artisan Formation:
Haemonculus
Talos, Ichor Injector, TL Haywire Blaster
Cronos, Spirit Probe

*I rolled for a Warlord trait, but forgot that I should be making my Haemonculus the Warlord and not my Archon. I got Rage, so absolutely useless.


Imperial Knights
----------------------

Knight Errant
Knight Paladin
Knight Forgeworld (Heavy 8, Twin-linked Str 7, AP 3 shots)

Space Wolves Special Detachment:
HQ - Wolf Priest
Elite - Servitor
Elite - Servitor

Fortification:
Firestorm Redoubt, x2 Icarus Lascannon, Quadcannon

*I'm not entirely sure the specifics of his list, but pretty sure this is it or close enough. Whatever he had gave his Warlord (the melta cannon Knight) a 3+ shield invuln and he ended up rolling It Will Not Die for a Warlord trait (eep!).

--------------------------------

I won the roll off to deploy and go first and opted to do so. I deployed everything on my line and made sure my Ravagers were getting a Ruin save in case he stole the initiative. I deployed from left to right: Reavers, Raider /w 10 Warriors, Reavers, Ravager, Reavers, Dark Artisan formation, Ravager, Raider /w Archon and 9 warriors, and Reavers. He ended up deploying his Firestorm Redoubt pretty close to his deployment line opposite my rightmost Ravager and tossed his Warlord behind it. His Battle Cannon Knight was placed opposite my Dark Artisan formation and his forgeworld Knight was put in the middle of his deployment area. A servitor and his Wolf Priest deployed inside the Redoubt and his last Servitor was on an objective at the opposite end of his deployment area. I wanted to go first and he failed to Seize.

We were playing the Maelstrom of War mission where you get 1 Tactical Objective card on Turn 1 and a Tactical Objective card for each objective you claim.

On my turn 1, I rolled an easy VP card, but forgot which one it was. My Raiders moved forward, both 6" towards objectives in front of them. My Ravagers moved a bit, but no more than 6" and trying to keep a ruin save so I could prevent myself from Jinking. My Reavers moved forward to swarm and get on objectives, and the 2 Reaver units on my right went flat out to get close to the Redoubt (so it'd have to auto-fire at them) and to cut off much movement from his Battle Cannon Knight. The Dark Artisan formation just moved forward, happy to get closer to any Knight. My shooting was relatively lackluster, and I managed to strip 1 HP off of two different Knights (the Forgeworld one and Battlecannon one). I wasn't aware of where his in the open Servitor was until I was asking where objectives were, and once I saw him my 10-man Warriors easily took him down. So first blood against a "Knight" list was pretty cool.

He moved forward on his turn with his Battlecannon Knight, maneuvering around the Reavers a bit, prepping to charge one unit of them. His Warlord stayed behind the Redoubt, and his Forgeworld Knight moved to my left flank to try to make up for the lost Servitor (because he needs to plop on some Objectives). His shooting was pretty bad, but he managed to blow up my left Raider and wipe out my Reavers in front of the Redoubt with the Redoubt (I had really bad Jink saves). His Battle Cannon Knight charged at the Reavers blocking his movement (I should point out they are blocking his movement because there's a large impassable terrain piece further to his right, and my Reavers are the only way forward without a few turns of walking around). Those Reavers die pretty easily, although it took some stomps to do it.

My Razorwing comes in and I place it to my far left blocked by some tall Ruins for a good save against the Redoubt's shooting. The Redoubt only managed to get 1 Glance on it when movement is over. My Reavers move to the right field of battle and my Warriors move and run to the objective they were claiming. My other unit of Reavers positions to get off a Heat Lance shot and charge his Battle Cannon knight. My Ravagers have to move out in the open to try to get multiple shots from multiple angles to bypass that silly Ion Shield. My archon gets out of his Raider,and just in time because the Raider immoblizes in terrain. The Dark Artisan move forward. My shooting goes pretty well and I manage to strip another HP off the forgeworld Knight and deal 5 HP to the Battle Cannon knight. A Reaver dies charging into it and I manage to rend the last HP off of it with the non-cluster caltrops Reaver. Amusing, but they die in the explosion.

On his turn 2 he moves his Warlord out to play and gets his Forgeworld Knight on an objective and ready to fire at my Warriors in cover. His Redoubt doesn't get to fire since it got off it's Interceptor shots so after a few warriors die and the Warlord fails to do any damage to my Dark Artisan Formation his turn ends after a failed charge into my Reavers (of which he did kill one with his Heavy Stubber - I didn't Jink because I really needed the Heat Lance next turn).

...Or so I thought. It missed, but the Reavers moved to pounce. My Dark Artisan got close enough that a charge was "pretty" much guaranteed. I moved the Ravagers to get good firing angles at his Warlord but to get out of LoS of his Forgeworld. The flier went far to my right side to get side armor on his Warlord Knight. After all my firing I managed to get 2 HP off of him. Not exactly what I was hoping for, but let's roll with it. The Dark Artisan formation charges in to tie him up a bit, and the Reavers follow. The Cronos elects to Smash attack, the Talos just does it's thing with Str 7, and the Reavers do their charging Rending thing. I get another 2 HP on the Imperial Knight when all is said and done, and he failed to hurt my Dark Artisan Feel No Pain guys. His Stomps do nothing.

On his turn positions his Forgeworld Knight to charge into my Warriors and shoots down my flier pretty easily with the Redoubt. My warriors get brutalized from shooting and he finished them off in the assault. His Warlord fails to do any significant damage, doing 1 wound to my Cronos. He did manage to stomp a good amount, and reached out to hit a Ravager which ended up getting Wrecked by the result. Ouch. The lone Reaver (With caltrops), looking at his recently stomped brethren decided to Hit and Run. The Warlord regains a HP from It Will Not Die.

My turn 4 has me with few options. I decide that the Forgeworld Knight isn't a concern, and position the last of my shooting into the Redoubt. I made a pretty big mistake early game thinking that Buildings were 6th edition durable, and it goes down from two Penetrates from my last Ravager. The collapse kills all the occupants inside. My last Reaver preps to charge back into the Warlord from behind and gets another HP off him. The Talos beats another HP, as well, but the Cronos sees it's last day as it's taken down by the Knight. His Stomp was still not a 6, so it does nothing.

He shoots at my Ravager from the Forgeworld Knight, and I happily Jink - taking a penetrating hit that results in a vehicle shaken. It's only job now is to survive and position itself. The Knight fails to hit anything with his 3 lumbering swings, and my Talos fails to do any damage. I Hit and Run with the Reaver.

On Turn 5, he's pretty much run out of options and is losing by a fair amount. He pretty much can't beat me on VPs, but he could still wipe me from the board. Everything is out of range of the Forgeworld Knight, and my Ravager is just moving to get to the safety of LoS. My Reaver charges back into the Warlord Knight but doesn't do anything. His Knight doesn't do anything. My Talos doesn't do anything. And his Stomps are a bit flaccid.

He realizes that not moving his Forgeworld Knight closer to me last turn was a bit of a mistake. He was trying to keep out of range of my last shooting, but he would basically auto-destroy anything he engaged in close combat. He moves forward, but can't reach anything after tripping over some Ruins and moving only about 6 or so inches. His Knight hits my Dark Artisan Formation three times, but fails to get any wounds through. My Talos doesn't even hit. The lone Reaver is wondering why it can't fly up to the cockpit and yank the drive out of the Knight. And with that we roll to see if the game continues. It does not. I end with 6 VPs to his 2.

---------------

After the game, we talked a good deal about his strategy. He doesn't get to play his Knights often, and I asked why he didn't just try to swarm me and Stomp the hell out of me. If his dice weren't failing him and my FnPs weren't hot, he should have dealt with my Dark Artisan formation much earlier. But then again, if he didn't have IWND, he would have went down on my turn 4 (saving both of us three assault rounds of embarrassment). Next time I'm sure he'll be a bit more aggressive, and that'll be a much bigger issue. Dealing with Waves of Knights isn't too difficult, and my list was far from optimal in doing so anyways.
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PostSubject: Re: Kabal of the Broken Mind: Battle Reports   Thu Jan 22 2015, 01:23

do you find having multiple small reaver units is worth losing objective secure?
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PostSubject: Re: Kabal of the Broken Mind: Battle Reports   Thu Jan 22 2015, 12:53

Not a bad question, but I'd probably break it down into two to explain my choice at the moment:

A) Are small Reaver units good?

- Definitely. They are invaluable. I'm using small units of 3 because I own 12 at the moment and don't have anything else built really fitting for 6 FA slots available. Even in my 2,000 point game the small 3-man units were infinitely invaluable to my strategy even before the game started (since I knew my Warlord trait and opted to come on Turn 2 with everything), and pulled a ton of work on their own. And in smaller games units of 3 become a serious issue because they are a fast, well-rounded unit that can take down anything in the game if the rolls are hot (a gamble that is definitely worth it considering their cost) - and even if they are focused down it'll usually take dedicated firepower at them.

B) How good is CAD/Objective Secured?

Not very good, really. It's not horrible, but what Troops do we have that are durable? Everything we have can score an objective anyways, so why does OS really make the difference? From my experience most people will literally sit on an objective, and with a rather large footprint - you need stay an 1" from them. So if they have a Riptide, Imperial Knight, they put a Flier on top of one, or have 10 Space Marines sitting on it (less even now that they are 32mm bases) - you can't get within 3" anyways, so OS becomes less important in those scenarios unless you plan on assaulting (and last I checked people weren't in throngs about bringing along Wyches). Troops need a hard skew to be worthwhile with OS, either having tons of them as a horde a la Orks or being extremely durable a la Wave Serpents/LRCs. I wouldn't park a valuable killing tool, we'll say a Venom here, next to a unit of practically anything just to get the VP that turn - because almost anything near a Venom can kill the Venom. And then you have no more Venom.

This is before bringing up the point that few to no competitive tournament lists thrive on just spamming OS troops and trying to win that way. All the big lists still only take their mandatory 2 slots and move on, because that's not the area of the codex where the power comes from. We have good Troop choices for a few reasons, but that doesn't make them a good spam option.

So the true strength in the CAD really comes from the Strategic Warlord table. But which ones are you hunting for? Infiltrate, making 3 units take Pinning checks, Stealth (Ruins) - those are less nice with Dark Eldar. I'd love Move Through Cover and Stealth (Ruins) - but most of my stuff can already buy Stealth and doesn't need to get a random roll, or find some Ruins, to get it. The table is probably better than Dark Eldar's (unless you roll Labyrinthine Cunning), but not by that much.
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