Friday, 29 August 2014

Imperial Guard vs Inquisition and Knights (mechanicum proxie): The first blow

My first game in the escalation campaign and its against the combined forces of the Mechanicum (using an alliance of inquisition and knights to proxy it). As the game is only 600 points, we use a 4x4 city fight table, with purge the alien mission. Wish me luck.

Before I go into the Battle report, first here is some Background information provided by my friend Valerius.

Operation Lancea: The Invasion of the Stygian Sector.
“By the Emperor, this is one almighty cluster-frag. We’ve got out-of-their-fraggin-mind allies who have can’t tell friend from foe packing enough firepower to blow half an Astartes company into the Eye. We’re facing a horde of fantatics who don’t much care whose blood their mad daemon gods get as long as there’s oceans of the stuff and in the middle of it all those damn Tau and their cannibal buddies with shots so accurate they may have fraggin’ well had them couriered to our boys. So much for ‘one quick drop,’ this will be the last fragger standing takes all. For Elysia and the Emperor, CHARGE!”
Sgt Fortis, Elysian Drop Troops
  The closing years of M.40 saw the millennia-long series of skirmishes and terror raids between the renegade worlds of the Stygian Sector and the Knights of House Tepes explode into all-out warfare with consequences far beyond their benighted cluster of planets. The cluster of worlds around Styges in the depths of the Maelstrom had been settled by fleeing Imperial Army regiments at the time of the Scouring. Having declared for the traitor Warmaster at the start of the Heresy, these regiments had been able to carve out an enclave far from the reach of Imperial justice, and had used these as a base from which to raid and pillage in the name of their dark patron ever since.
 With the growing threats from Tau expansionism and the Red Harvest of the rapidly awakening Sehkenmat Empire drawing in and eradicating Imperial forces at a staggering rate, forces to shore up the battered Maelstrom frontiers were depleted to critical levels. The Knights of House Tepes and their Mechanicus allies from the Forgeworld of Ixion fought with grim determination to oppose the fierce war clans of the Stygian sector, but the renegade coalition outnumbered them many times over, and attacked across the width of the front, ensuring success wherever the vast fighting machines of the Mechanicum were not deployed in time. The more the region was bled dry of troops and materiel, the more vulnerable the nearby worlds were to slave-raids from renegade sector.  Finally, word reached the Arch-Count Valerius of Carpathia, Knight-Seneschal of the Tepes bloodline of a threat that could cause immeasurably more damage than a few thousand stolen workers, and see the border worlds overrun in a tide of slaughter that even their Knights could not stand against. 

 Deep within the Stygian Sector was the Dark Mechanicum Forge of Ferrograd. Safe from the judgement of the Omnissiah’s faithful servants, the Hereteks supplied the renegade armies with vast quantities of weapons, armour and tanks, in exchange for vast ranks of slaves for their forges and experiments. Far from the usual mobs of fanatics that serve the arch-enemy, their troops every bit the equal of their Imperial adversaries with unprecedented access to heavy weapons and armoured units. Although Ferrograd was seen as an affront to the Mechanicum, and one they would dearly have loved to delete once and for all, the cost of such an endeavour was deemed an inefficient use of machinery and the incessant raids they outfitted were tolerated with clenched teeth, while the hell-forges of the Dark Mechanicum ceaselessly churned out arms and armour for the arch-enemy. Until, that is, the Dark Magi of Ferrograd uncovered a long-lost STC amid the daemon-haunted wastes of their world. A relic from mankind’s golden age, this STC would allow for the mass production of the Baneblade chassis and its myriad variants with the same ease they currently churned out the Chimera. For the first time in 10,000 years the servants of the Omnissiah would find themselves badly out gunned. 

 A council of war was quickly convened with the Arch-Magos of Ixion and Count Valerius of House Tepes reaching the conclusion that action was needed before these super-heavies could begin to roll off the production lines and into their domains. Dozens of Knights were supported by Titans of Legio Taurus with their Mechanicum Auxilia and flung through the warp to confront the renegades and hereteks of the Stygian sector. Their mission was to drive a blade through the heart of the Dark Mechanicum of Ferrograd and sever the supply lines to the arch-enemy once and for all with an all out assault. On translation back into realspace, the Knights and their allies discovered all was not going to go to plan...

This is the report of the mechanicusm first assault

The Armies

Renegade Imperial guard (codex Astra Militarum)

Company Command Squad - 120 (warlord: Relentless)
plasma gun, vox caster, power maul, plasma pistol, carapace armour

Platoon command - 55
Vox caster, flamer, power maul

Infantry squad - 80
autocannon, plasma gun, vox caster

Infantry squad - 80
autocannon, plasma gun, vox caster

Heavy weapon team - 105
3x lascannon

Veterans - 95
3x melta gun
Chimera - 65
multi-laser, heavy bolter

Mechanicum 600 points (codex Inquisition and Knights)

Inquisitorial detachment

Mechanicum Magos (Inquisitor) – (warlord: Furios charge)
Power armour, conversion beamer
Psychic powers: Prescience (auto-targetting systems), Forwarning (shields)

Inquisitorial warband 
3x servitor w/ heavy bolter, 3x acolyte w/ power armour and power axe (techprist)

Knight Detachment

Knight Errant

The Mission

As its only a 4x4 table we just used dawn of war deployment as it would just be the easiest for the game. Rolling for mission we get purge the alien, damn, i was hoping for an objective game.

Rolling for deployment and the mechanicum win electing to deploy and go first. Its very quick as the Magos joins the henchmen unit on the far right in cover and the knight deploys on the left.

To stand a chance against this i deploy the lascannon team in the middle with line of sight to the knight. On the left i deploy a unit of infantry with the autocannon having a good line of sight across the table. In the middle the chimera with veterans inside hides behind a ruin so hopefully the knight can’t see it, and using it as cover, the company command deploy behind it. The platoon command deploy to the right of the chimera while the last infantry squad goes on the far right ready to take the building in front of them.

Night Fight: No
Steal the initiative: No

The Battle

Mechanicum turn 1

Crushing through the city the knight pushes forwards towards the heavy weapon team. On the right the squad moves forwards though the ruins to see the guard force.

Psychic phase and the Magos activate the shields giving the squad a 4+ invulnerable save. He attempts to activate his auto-targeting but fails to active it.

Shooting phase and the servitors open fire on the platoon command and even though they are snap shooting; they still manage to kill 1 of the squad. The knight fires its meta cannon at the heavy weapon team, locking on and burning up one of the team. The stubber barks after the cannon but it fails to do any damage. Taking a moral test the heavy weapon team stays in the fight.

Mechanicum: 0 - Renegades: 0

Renegades turn 1

Engines pushing the tank as far as it can go, the chimera smashes though the ruins towards the knight. On the right the infantry climb to the top of the building, gaining a commanding view of the battle field. Both command squads follow the chimera.

Shouting orders to the heavy weapon teams, the company command’s orders get lost over the vox with a double 6 and the network temporarily goes down. Not needing an order to know what to shoot, the lascannons target the knight but despite the target being bigger than a building, the gunners still miss. Both autocannons strake the knight but the shots just bounce off its armour. As the knight is close, the chimera blows its smoke, hopefully protecting it from the oncoming storm.

Mechanicum: 0 – Renegades: 0

Mechanicum turn 2

Knowing its biggest threat was near, the knight moves towards the chimera. The magos again moves though the ruins.

Again the magos actives shields.

The servitors again shoot this time at the infantry squad on the right, but all the shots miss. A loud roar and the melta cannon hits the chimera and melts the heavy bolter in place effectively destroying it but leaving the rest of the chimera relatively unharmed (if not a little charred).

Charging forwards, the knight assaults the chimera, its hammer of wrath attack crushing its tracks allowing it to swing its D weapon, penetrating its armour 3 times but it fails to explode it.  Their transport in ruins the veterans bail out and pass their pinning test, ready to exact revenge.

Mechanicum: 2 – Renegades: 0

Renegades turn 2

Moving though the wreck the melta guns of the veterans get passed to the front, making sure they are in malta range of the knight. On the right again the guard move forwards, getting the plasma gun in range of the knight. On the left the same happens, with the plasma gunner jumping down the ruins into the door way, to see the knight. Unable to see anything, the heavy weapons team moves though the ruins to see the knight.   

Ordering the veterans to take down the knight, the order gets though clearly. All melta guns hit, and 2 get though the knights ion shield. Both shots penetrate the armour, and 1 even explodes something inside the knight, reducing it by 3 hull points. With the knight still standing, the commander tells the guard on the right to take it down! By some miracle the autocannon hits with both shots, and gets a double 6! Two glancing hits and both blow though the ion shield. The other autocannon has a go with the plasma gun aiding it but all shots fail to get past its armour. My last shot at taking out the knight, the snap shooting lascannons. 1 actually hits, and penetrates the super-heavies armour, the ion shield again fails and the knight staggers backwards before exploding. In the maelstrom of fire, 3 veterans die, a fair trade I would say.

Mechanicum: 2 – Renegades: 1

Mechanicum turn 3

With only a single unit left, the Magos and bodyguard moves back.

Auto-targetting works this turn allowing the servitors a re-roll to hit.

Even though they can only snap shot, with the re-roll most of the shots hit and kill the platoon command

Mechanicum: 3 – Renegades: 1

Renegades turn 3

With only a single target left, the army converges towards the Magos and bodyguard. The infantry on the left start moving out of their ruin as it can’t see anything. The veterans take cover and the command squad joins them.

All the shots from the army hit the squad hunkered up in the ruin, but only a single servitor dies.

Mechanicum: 3 – Renegades: 1

Mechanicum turn 4

The vets run
The Magos moves back while staying in coherency with his squad, the rest of the unit holds its ground.

He gets off his auto-tergetting this turn.

The two servitors open fire on the veterans who go to ground, but 2 die from the punishment and the rest of the veterans run for it.

Mechanicum: 3 – Renegades: 1

Renegades turn 4

Attempting to rally, the veterans have no loyalty to the cause and keep on running. The rest of the force carries on its pressure on the Magos and the infantry on the right starts moving down the building.

All the shots from the army kill a single servitor and an acolyte.

Mechanicum: 3 – Renegades: 1

Mechanicum turn 5

No movement, but the magos gets both the shields up and the targetters.

Not having moved, the Magos aims his conversion beamer at the command squad who have wondered into his line of sight. The blast isn’t very strong, and two of the squad die. The heavy bolter then fires at them and kills the last 2 guard and wounds the commander himself.

Mechanicum: 3 – Renegades: 1

Renegade turn 5

The guard and heavy weapons team can’t get to the commander fast enough, and he is left on hsi own so moves back.

Again shooting is less than impressive as only a single acolyte.

Mechanicum: 3 – Renegades: 1

We roll to see if the game carries on...

Mechanicum turn 6

Again the Magos increases his accuracy and fires his conversion beamer at the company command killing him.

Mechanicum: 5 – Renegades: 1

Renegades turn 6

Again i only kill 1 member of the magos’s unit but this time its enough to make the Magos thing twice about sticking around, he runs for it.

We roll to see if the game carries on and it ends.

Technically as at the end of the game the Mechanicum forces are either destroyed or fleeing, that counts as a tabling? So even though the Mechanicum has more points then the renegades...

Renegade Victory?


With the Mechanicum's assault blunted, the renegades show their strength in the system.

That was a very odd game, i expected the knight to be the real problem and the Magos and friends to just fold. How wrong i was, while i know i got very lucky with getting so much damage on the knight it did fall quite nicely.

As this was my first real game with the imperial guard my tactics were terrible, i should have had both infantry squads supporting each other, instead of on opposite sides of the table. Orders, i forgot about after turn 2, as i could have got the veterans back in the fight other than just running off the table.

The imperial warlord traits are interesting but very limited, i can’t help but feel the command traits might be better suited for the commander, as they synergise quite nicely with his order range.  

Hope you liked the first in our little escalating campaign. 


  1. Nicely done looking forward to more.

  2. Well done for taking down the knight.

  3. I would disagree with the warlord traits being limited. Two of them give greater flexibility to your orders, one effectively makes you fearless. Outflanking units is always useful, and being able to outflank up to three can cause real problems for your opponent. Relentless is quite situational, but useful if you have an Master of Ordinance or heavy weapons teams. Preferred enemy is also situational, but good if you run plasma.

    The main thing with guard is to remember your orders, you'll be surprised how much of a difference they can make!

  4. I actually lol'd when I saw a knight at 600 points but then I saw your lascannons and meltavets and figured that this would be a do or die type battle...and it was. If you'd failed to kill that knight for even one more turn you'd have been done but you pushed though and committed.

    Good job dude.