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Chaos v PDF Ambush

 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2008 10:05 am 
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Hi Guys, just testing the waters with an old BatRep.

The following is a battle report from about two years ago when I managed to bully a very grumpy Chaos Player (known as John hereafter) into playing an off the wall scenario in a Mega Wars Campaign. The Fluff is Chaos forces are using a valley to advance but are ambushed by a brave (desperate) force of PDF.

PDF start Dug In and Hidden while Chaos set up facing the direction of travel with Advance orders. The valley has a few craters (yes, ok... there painted ice cream cone lids) while the PDF sit comfortably behind the walls of a burnt out Farming Complex where they have trenches, and plenty of cover.

I can't quite remember the exact Chaos OOB (Order of Battle) but PDF has...

PDF Tactical Infantry Company
PDF Heavy Infantry Company
PDF Anti Tank Support Company
PDF Earthshaker Artillery Company
PDF Sanctioned Psyker
PDF Rgt Command Baneblade
PDF AA Battery
PDF Heavy Weapons Platoon



Set Up Phase - John talks to his Chaos units while I muck around with the camera.



1st Turn - Charge! Initial PDF artillery lucks out and manages to KO a Chaos Nurgle Warhound!



Mortarion pauses for a picture...



2nd + 3rd Turn - Despite incoming PDF fire Chaos forces push forward. PDF attempt to break each Contagion Daemon Engine in the hopes of weakening their return fire. It works but dilutes fire to other Chaos targets. A Hydra Platform takes out a Chaos Thunderhawk with Space Marines on board, hurray!









4thTurn - All across the battlefield Chaos Nurgle forces reach their foes...



5th Turn - An entire Heavy Weapons Platoon is finally wiped out by Contagion before the Chaos Minotaurs can get to grips.



End Game - Despite passing countless morale rolls, breaking many of the Daemon packs (to little effect) and striping off almost all the ?Chaos Reward cards from the Chaos army the PDF crumbles into a sickening heap as Contagion spreads. Nurgle Daemons and Chaos slaves rip into the few dazed survivors remaining.
This left an untouched immobile artillery company doomed on the back line and some bits and peaces of a PDF Heavy Infantry Company scattered around the Farm to face the inevitable slaughter.

Chaos victory! (Damn... lost again)





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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:32 pm 
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Hi!

Ahhh.. father Nurgle has triumphed!

Long Live the Lord of Decay! :D

Those PDF better summon some Grey Knights the next time around..... :;):

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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 3:08 am 
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Nice Batrep!  Assaults are always tricky to win as Defender, and Nurgle vs. PDF would be just brutal!




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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 8:08 am 
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It was. At first I thought John had made a mistake with Nurgle but he doesn't do that often. The Nurgle Daemons slight increase in save mod paid off and Contagion was very effective. (Infective)

I felt I had more than my fair share of good luck on this battle but it just wasn't enough.

I really love playing assault rules. I have one other BatRep that I photographed using about 5000pnt PDF and approx 1000pnt SM (reinforcements) v approx 12000pnt +Tyranid Hive. (Photo's aren't great but a little better than on this BatRep)

At first you think your doing all right and they seem sooo far away... and then their not so far away and your no longer doing so well. Very enjoyable battle though.

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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 12:34 pm 
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Heh Warhead!  

PDF in it's element there!  Contagion/plaguewind type stuff is just a bit too handy in that scenario :) I wonder if the PDF would have been saved under the older rules- giving saves to units in fortifications.

I do like to see some classic I-can't-possibly-paint-all-that-lot armies- makes me feel so much better.  Maybe I shouldn't be ashamed to post-up my games.

Did you need to mod the old Space Marine Assualt scenario?  I remember thinking that it might not balance so well with Netepic, but I can't remember why. Our attempt flopped as a misunderstanding left the defenders with half their allowed army  :blush: I was thinking to rewrite for the optionals book, but it seemed daft without actually playing through it.


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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 3:37 pm 
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Hi loofnick

After playing a couple of campaigns and test campaigns at Mega Wars (No campaign ever gets completed but one did run for about 15 battles ranging from normal rules to weird and wonderful rules) with at least three other players (to rain me in when I got carried away) we kind of jury rigged a compromise that we could all agree on. We also played some stand alone battles. Some worked and some didn't but all where enjoyable.

Campaign games usually end up with some weird rules once in a while to tell the story but the One Major change to the Assault Rules we made and kept for all our games was...

Dug In units gain +1 armour (not -1TSM) and also gained +1 Caf IF in a Fortified position or Building. Fortifications may not be entered until occupiers killed or fled and you may not move reinforcements into Fortifications when the defenders are being engaged by the enemy. (The last bit was taken from the OLD Space Marine rules for Close Combat.) All other rules that I can remember for Assaults apply.

We changed from -1TSM to +1 Armour because of Night Time Rules in Assault games as we all felt most attacks at -3 to hit became far too difficult and somehow more complicated.

We kept the army ratio at half points total for the defenders but they got to chose what table edge to deploy on and always had to deploy first. Nothing may be hidden bigger than a supper heavy tank. However they gained a +1 to their Morale and Initiative so long as they had the lead in VP.

[QUOTE  - I do like to see some classic I-can't-possibly-paint-all-that-lot armies- makes me feel so much better.  Maybe I shouldn't be ashamed to post-up my games.]
(Nup, I still can't get this bleedin' thing to work... I'm such a diddy! :confuse:  )

After looking at some of the mouth-watering detail some people on this site can achieve I can truly understand But in this instance what the heck... it was John's Chaos army not mine (He said he doesn't care about painting so long as when he plays he gets to shoot up all the prettier armies.) Also, since that BatRep my PDF looks slightly better. For heavens sake get your BatReps on here please! I can't get enough of the things.

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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 4:32 pm 
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Nice ideas there, I especially like the +1 morale and initiative.  +1 armour doesn't quite replace -1 to hit, but I suppose points cost balancing isn't really important in a campaign.
Fortifications may not be entered until occupiers killed or fled and you may not move reinforcements into Fortifications when the defenders are being engaged by the enemy.
interesting- not too sure i'd do this one though.

Hmm.. Another difference-  I think in Space Marine version defender pays double pts for units and standard for fortifications.

Would you say your games were fairly balanced like this then (not just fun)?
[QUOTE  - I do like to see some classic I-can't-possibly-paint-all-that-lot armies- makes me feel so much better.  Maybe I shouldn't be ashamed to post-up my games.]
(Nup, I still can't get this bleedin' thing to work... I'm such a diddy! :confuse:  )
You get the hang of it.  To do what you tried there- click quote, then paste the bit you want, then click quote again.  Or to quote an entire post instead- don't click to reply to a post, click the quote button in the top-right of the post that you want to quote

Although there are a few show-offs with their painting, they are in the small minority, and people here do appreciate just about anything with paint on!  :;):  Most people I think have more unpainted then painted- just few bravely show-off their unpainted hordes.  In any case sometimes it's good to see the styles people choose if nothing else.  Yours seem pretty good.


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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 6:48 pm 
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Ahh, but isn't the distinction between bravery and foolishness success?

Nice ideas there, I especially like the +1 morale and initiative.  +1 armour doesn't quite replace -1 to hit, but I suppose points cost balancing isn't really important in a campaign.

Thanks for the help on the 'Quote' thing loofnick. :)

Another reason why we went for the +1 Armour save instead of to normal -1 TSM is that units that 'Ignore Cover' or 'Reduce Cover' are then rendered not ineffective but slightly reduced in effect. The reason behind this decision comes from a Night Time City Assault against a Tzeentch Force (John again) and a Dug In PDF/IG army (Run by James his brother). John had Warp Missiles on every Titan Shoulder Hard Point of a Warlord Battlegroup (Auto Hit and Destroy Buildings and Fortifications) while the other weapons could all ignore cover (Titan  grade Quake Cannons) and by turn two it was obvious the PDF/IG where heading for an early bath while the Chaos force had hardly any damage at all. We all realised after that, that all Dug-In units and Fortifications where too vulnerable. No satisfying change has been made yet for Fortifications but at least now there is some benefit to being Dug-In. (In most historic and modern battles I can think of Dug-In units are hard to kill by firepower alone even Napalm and Airburst etc doesn't get the job done.)  

Ah, I forgot about paying for fortifications. With a PDF army you get a certain amount of Trenches and Razorwire for free per 1000pnts or something. I think this makes up for how weak they are in individual stats. I really rate PDF as it's an economic way of paying for Cannon Fodder while buying just enough firepower of your own to give your opponent a hard time. (I've even manage to win a couple of times.) I don't believe army points difference is all that important even in a one off game. It just changes how you play and what you pick.

As for Balanced games well... I've been playing Epic (not very well) since 1994. Most of us know what some of the rule descriptions were like back then. You had to come up with stuff just to make the game work sometimes. (People would come up with the weirdest things too)
So after approx 14 years I should have a reasonable chance of getting some of it right but I would say anything is worth trying at least once and if the new idea doesn't fit with the game then get rid of it. (The idea not the game) I like to Battle Test stuff and make notes of what worked and what didn't. (Yes sad I know)
Then I plague my friends until they give in (that's the hard part) and trial a game with the new rules. If they don't think it was balanced then I get slagged rotten later in the pub over a pint. Anyway that's the process...  ???

(There's obviously more to it than that but I wont bore you any more than I have to... oops, to late.)

I enjoy playing any type of Epic but prefer slightly modifying rules to hopefully make it more fun... and if it isn't balanced then I really should do a better job of balancing it more in my own favour.

Thanks for the compliment on the painting. As long as I'm happy with the end result I don't mind. I wouldn't say 'show-offs' are quite the right words as I believe they have earned the right to. However, it is a bit depressing when you realise your not one of them... I try to think of it as room for improvement, eh?  :D

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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 11:42 pm 
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I didn't mean show-off in a bad way- they should show off.  It's not llike they are elitist or anything, quite the opposite (assuming there is an opposite and you're not too exact when you go looking for one [it's just a turn of phase- don't think what the opposite is for goodness sakes]).

Thanks for the rest of your thoughts, some more good points.  I'm not really that bothered about balanced games for scenarios.  Just good to know that both sides have a decent chance, and cheesy armies don't get too much of an advantage.


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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 12:03 am 
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I didn't mean show-off in a bad way


Sometimes on these threads I find the written word hard to express or translate the correct intended meaning. :(  It's trickier than when you talk face to face.

I'm not really that bothered about balanced games for scenarios.

Nice to know I'm not alone.  :p

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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 12:54 am 
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We tried the SM version of the Assault rules a couple of times using them fairly vanilla.  They work out ok, but balance seems to depend on the armies.  Against Bugz it just seems a silly idea to let them have twice as much stuff as you, and as defender you never have enough to take down a Bio Titan....that was ugly.  Another time we had Orks as defenders which sounds kinda odd I know, but they actually kicked ass.  The Mobz rule really wasn't an issue and all the cheap and free stuff helped balance things out.  Bad Moonz and Goffs in trenches is harsh!

PDF would be interesting because they wouldn't get a lot of benefit out of the "cheap" fortifications.

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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 7:28 am 
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Hi Zap,

'...fairly vanilla.' what mean dis'?  :confuse:  (I'm guessing loose with the rules?)

Assault rules can get a bit mental against bugs but good fun if you don't mind becoming bug food. Or playing as bugs with number restrictions on the ever present Bio-Titans.

Ork defenders would be a great idea. Give the lads a bit of a rest. Battles delivered to your door, excellent... Who did you have attacking?

Perhaps with assault rules there should be a time limit so the defender only needs to hang on for so long. This could benefit the game as the attacker is forced to push on and get the job done. (Nice and bloody)

Weirdest Assault game I've played was 3000pnt PDF/Eldar allied force against a 6000pnt Chaos Horde (Khorne/Slaanesh - older rules so no Animosity) played on 8 old Space Hulk boards representing a Hive. Lots of elevators to each level and opening/closing/blowing up doors and things... Brilliant game but really strange to get your head round. (Won that one but John at the very last got one Khorne Berserker into a lift full of escaping PDF and played Hypnotic Gaze on a Salamander... ouch!)

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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 11:35 am 
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So, balance isn't really an option- to be expected really.  Defending against bugs sounds like fun!

Time limits definitely needed- we don't want month long siege-, waiting for artillery to demolish all the buildings.

Elevators? for 6000pts of Chaos? I like the indoor thing but that seems more then a bit silly  :D  Good stuff!


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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 3:58 pm 
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Hi loofnick,

So, balance isn't really an option- to be expected really.  


The balance is the responsibility of the person designing the game. You'll know from talking to your group what they expect from a scenario like this. However you could also argue that in reality not all things are equal.

Balance can sometimes be a mercurial thing with these types of games but fun is usually guaranteed. Discuss it with your players and you might find their open to the idea. Don't be put off if some games flop, though. If this does happen just put it down to the design learning curve. You have to play a few times to sort out what changes to make before it works.

We've all played straight games until we know the system and units front and back. So why not mess around once in a while. :p  

Elevators? for 6000pts of Chaos? I like the indoor thing but that seems more then a bit silly    Good stuff!

It was a bit silly but actually really interesting in a lot of ways. The aspect of all the units subtly changed as they had to cope with the environment. Tactics also changed leaving me second guessing what my opponent was going to do... Good stuff right enough. (The above example was from a Campaign game and the surviving unit of Khorne Berserks gained a Chaos Reward for such a daring action.) The Elevators were a twist representing the only entry and exit points on the board and so the only means of withdrawing in the game.   :(

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 Post subject: Chaos v PDF Ambush
PostPosted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 4:35 am 
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(Warhead @ Jun. 13 2008,07:28)
QUOTE
Hi Zap,

'...fairly vanilla.' what mean dis'?  :confuse:  (I'm guessing loose with the rules?)



Ork defenders would be a great idea. Give the lads a bit of a rest. Battles delivered to your door, excellent... Who did you have attacking?

Perhaps with assault rules there should be a time limit so the defender only needs to hang on for so long. This could benefit the game as the attacker is forced to push on and get the job done. (Nice and bloody)

By Vanilla I meant exactly as GW wrote them....no house rules.  I do really like the suggestion of a time limit....that would liven things up a little.

The Orks were defending against Dark Elves.  It was my second test of the DE list and was meant to be a Slave Raid gone wrong.  The DE weren't allowed to take a Web Portal.  The Ork player was pretty clever and concentrated on the Skimmers, picking them off with all his first fire units while the Renegade Mekboy Dragstas cut down incoming fire dramatically.  The DE infantry got hung up on barricades and the firepower of the Bad Moons and Goffs chopped 'em up.    The Wyches had fun once they got to grips with the Greenskins but the damage had already been done.  Probably didn't help that the DE lost two titans in the first shot of the game (Braincrushas straight through the Shadow Field..hit head, rolled a 5, dead titan....twice!).

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