At last, it was time for a scheduled break. We totted up points and the Imperium were comfortably in the lead. With that in mind, Chaos decided to up their game and bring everything they had left in reserve forward in one great push.
The Chaos team were looking very pleased with themselves when they unloaded over 100 cultists on the table, PLUS several units of Thousand Sons and Chaos Terminators. Last but not least came the Decimator Daemon engine. That thing was nasty, and because of its weapon loadout (siege claws, I think they were called) it was more than capable of single-handedly dealing with a Super Heavy tank in a turn or two. Especially if, like mine, they’ve taken a few hits already!
Due to a rule of Ahrimans that I’m not familiar with, the Chaos side were free to outflank these units too, and the loooong board gave this particular deadliness. Before we knew it, our (almost) untouched back lines were swarming with fiends! Gasp!
As for us, though, we still had an idea or two…
The Masters of the Chapter formation led our side choose an additional 3 assets during the break instead of one. With the Brethren of the Great Wolf as well, that was 4 assets! Compared to the Chaos side’s 1, that was potentially a major advantage.
Firstly, we spent a Victory Point bringing back the Stormlord, then used a new asset card (flank march) to bring him on right close to the enemy lines to support Marneus Calgar. We also selected the asset that let us bring a unit back (n.b. this was separate to the Stormlord’s revival. As per Stragetic Reinforcement rules, you can bring back a model each break for a cost, so long as they don’t have more than 15 wounds/HP). We also chose Shield Generator (which we popped right away to protect the Stormlord), and lastly the Vortex Grenade and Orbital Bombardment assets. We didn’t reckon we’d get to use them, but better safe than sorry. Besides, we’d missed our chance to use most of the others!
That was the only reinforcement we had, but we hoped it would be enough.
After the Disaster Table chucking us the Virus Bomb result (S3 AP- hits on each unit equal to models), we each again removed a bunch of models, the Cultists hit the hardest in this case, followed by the Chaos Terminators (for some reason!). The Emperor must have smiled on us (albeit briefly..!).
CHAOS TURN 3
After moving on alllll the cultists, the Chaos team set about raking down all the Space Marines that had been hiding on Objectives and terrain on our side of the board. Devastators in buildings were burned by the Hellturkey, ratlings zapped, Rhinos blown up and Super-heavies were menaced. Since they’d arrived from reserve, there were no charges on our side of the board. Yet. Key word yet.
Further up the table, Marneus Calgar and his struggle was intensified with the addition of numerous Daemon Princes joining in the fray. It wasn’t looking good for the Chapter Master of the
Ultramarines Iron Devourers. Every model except him died on my end, leaving him alone on ONE wound. He did take 4 terminators down alone, but how long could he hold out?
In the huuuge combat in the middle, chaos reined. Well, that’s not accurate. In truth, Chaos were getting the stuffing kicked out of them, but it was a mighty clusterfunk. We had Wolf Leaders, Inquisitors, plaguebearers, Great Unclean Ones, Henchmen, Thunderwolf riders… And of course, Ahriman. Ahriman! The thorn in our side! He was shrugging off huge amounts of pain thanks to his Eternal Warrior & 2+/4++ (rerolling ones). He was a tank! The combat whittled down to just him and a Daemon Prince on the Chaos side, with Ahriman Look Out Sir!ing wounds on to him. This was a dude that would not die! George (the Space Wolf player) was almost frothing at the mouth when Marcus declared that Ahriman was going to attempt to teleport away. Thankfully for us he didn’t, but not thankfully for us he survived!
IMPERIUM TURN 4
We suddenly had some serious threats to consider. Cultists and Thousand Sons all up in our grill, Marneus Calgar facing certain death, the Shadowsword staring down a creature designed to kill it. We needed to maintain our advantage and wipe these suckers away.
The first thing I did was shift the Shadowsword a little further away and swivel it to bring its Volcano Cannon to bear on the Decimator Engine. Typically, the shot went wild, and scattered off the table. So much for that idea! Even with assistance from the Predator, the engine still gleamed fresh and scary.
Happy with something within range, the Brethren of the Great Wolf utterly destroyed some Cultists that had wandered too close. Utterly. Destroyed.
Space Marines tried their best to stem the tide of Cultists, and the Dreadnoughts on our back flank both charged the Thousand Sons together in one last show of force before they were mulched in melee.
The Stormlord mowed down marines in their dozens, but had he arrived to late?
In the centre combat, the Daemon Prince was finally ended, but Ahriman still held on. Curses!
Marneus Calgar finally fell in the midst of a seething mass of daemonic pressure. It was close, though! He had only failed one save, meaning if I’d made that 4++, he would have kept on truckin’. Alas, it was not to be. Still, he died how he lived, punching things with his giant hands.
The game was drawing to a close, as we were running out of time. It was all down to the last turn…