Tuesday 20 February 2018

Hive Probatious: Defend Against Pestilence

'All was darkness. Memories and dreams flew through Adelias mind as if a tempest was inside her mind. Her hard childhood learning to defend herself in the depths of Hive Probatious, improvising weapons until she joined the Eschers and was giving her first gun. Her father, who was an officer had started to lose his mind, and her mother had dragged them both away from the eyes of those who may question what he had fought and seen. The Inquisition will cleanse anyone who sees Chaos, and her father had seen much. He would often wake up shaking, murmouring of disgusting creatures that slowly stalked the battlefield, clouds of flies buzzing around their humanesque forms as smaller creatures would gather in great numbers playfully laughing and attacking the guardsmen. Sometimes he could not speak at all of what he had seen. Her thoughts began imagining large Astartes in armour that rotted, the smell of disease and filth strong and their relentless advance, firing boltguns and plasma wherever they pleased. With a jolt, Adelia shot up.'

Welcome all to a 2000 points battle report between the insidious Death Guard lead by none other than Typhus versus the gallant (yet slightly scummy) Hive Guard! First time using points and it worked out pretty well, managed to fit in a little more than I did in 100 power.  Deployment was a standard set up along the lengths of the board, I rolled and got first turn but Lewis seized the intiative! Darn it!

'Her vision was blurred, but she recognised her surroundings quickly. The dark ceiling and the low green lights of the command centre was now a familiar sight, a welcome one at that too. As her eyes started to focus she saw the crew of her Leman Russ battle tank to the side, all sat around a table sullenly drinking whatever was in their cups. "Awake I see. Bout fucking time" a gruff voice said. Her fellow Escher looked over to see her awake, as she looked to the side seeing Birim, his huge grey haired mohawk looking black from the battle but a smile on his face. "Wha... What happened?" Adelia asked. "One of those Death Guard bastards smashed your tank up, but its being fixed. Your girls are all fine apart from some scratches and smoke inhalation, but you got thrown out from an explosion on the main turret. Should be fine though. Massive bruise on your arse made all the lads laugh" he said joyfully. Then she felt the ache through her entire body, her arms were covered in scrapes and her backside throbbed, Birim wasn't lying. Ophelia, the driver of the Leman Russ, walked over and put her hand on Birims shoulder. "you alright sis?" she asked. Adelia let out a sigh, "I think so, medicae administered anything?" "Yeah" Birim replied. "Drink this and get up" he said handing her over his hip flask. Adelia had drank from his flask before and the liquid inside burned her throat. For once, it didn't feel unpleasent.'

Lewis commanded his forces forward quickly taking the two bastions with deep striking terminators right on the top. It took quite a while to get them out of there! My plasma executioner tank took a lot of damage early on and wasn't very effective but with how much damage it took it did its job! Autocannons vs Death Guard are pretty good though and even though it wasn't ordered it did well! Deffo keeping him around.  Those terminators though took out 2 squads of infantry, the damage to the tank and almost killed a sentinel. They got some bad ass weaponry!

"So some of us are alive, did we acheive the mission? Whats the casualties?" she wanted to know. Birim walked over to a desk where some people were discussing a hologram. He picked up a dataslate and walked back over, the red glow from the slate lighting his face up. "Pushed em back, made the fuckers pay. A lot of em are left lying face down in the dirt, though their stinking corpses probably like that. Ghronx went down, but hes not dead. Well not yet anyway. He still owes me 30 credits. We lost a few vehicles and about 40 men. Lot of repairs needed all being worked on. Some stupid bitch let a Marine slap her tank... oh yeah thats you." Birim snorted heartily under his breath. "We got em retreating and whatever they were after we don't think they got. Beat em to some of the supplies so we should be good until reinforcements." Adelia swung her legs over the side of the bed, taking a moment to stretch. "Who did we lose?" Birim looked up at her solemnly. "Most of my boys are gone, some are wounded pretty bad but that won't stop em from getting stuck back in if needed. A lot of your lasses are wounded too, not sure how many dead. Them Goliaths seem ok but the Defence Force squads lost a lot too. Reinforcements are hopefully coming in soon." Adelias experience of gang warfare was that you might lose a couple of comrades during a skirmish, but war brought loss to a whole new level."

Objective wise it was a close battle, I managed to get a few early on but Lewis kept close too. I'd edge forward by a couple then he'd catch up, and coming towards the end of the game he had just pushed ahead by a point.  I love how the objectives keep you guessing what you need to do. The best example, was me having to advance all my forces out of my deployment zone, which I manmaged to do and then on Lewis' turn he had to move 4 of his units back to defend his deployment zone. Narratively after his slow grinding advance I rushed forward and took him by surpise forcing him back. We loved that moment! My Vendetta took out the Plague Drone which was the scariest unit for me as it could surge forward with flamers and tie up valuable units. It had to go! 6 Lascannons worked haha.

'Memories of the battle started flooding back. Part of the mission had been to reclaim two old Bastions, but the enemy had managed to somehow teleport straight on top and the firepower from them took a toll on the defenders lines. Eventually they were cleared and one of the Astropaths had made it into one, the information claimed potentially being valuable. She remembered a smoking Vendetta gunship screaming around, its Lascannons blazing bright lights across the sky before it was struck and tumbled to the ground. The Death Guards flanks seemed to have been pushed back, but the middle had been the problem. Adelia suddenly remembered the masked Astarte that had strode forward over the bodies of friends and foes alike and struck at her tank with force she never knew one person could wield. After that, she could remember nothing. "Ghronx is in the medicae if you wanna go see him, along with the more badly wounded" Birim mentioned. As she set her feet on the floor, pain stung up her legs and her back. Her first couple of steps were uneasy, but the pain wasn't an alien feeling. "Best go see how the horny bastard is then" Adelia said as she walked away.'

These Death Guard Plaguebursters are brutal. Lewis has informed me hes getting more to add to the two he already has and I am worried! We had a little Callidus vs Typhus action (eventually, we kept forgetting we had them in reserves!) and I was gutted the Assassin didn't do more damage. Damn Chaos Psyker of filth!

My commander fell to a Plaguecaster, who then went into my command tank and finished it off. That was brutal! He then fell to lasgun and plasma gun fire from some infantry and the Goliath Veterans. Typhus had moved forward to try and contest an objective but I was able to slow him down enough before he could add his considerable weight to the fight. 

'She saw Aldreyus to one side, who was talking to the Astropath she had seen with the Goliaths before. A Ratskin shamen was also present, although he seemed distantly in thought elsewhere. She nodded at the Primaris Psyker who noticed her. "Ah Adelia, you're up and ok. It is a blessing to the Emperor that you are well". "Yeah I'm pretty happy about it. Although death means a good sleep" she replied. "Oh dear, thats not good... Oh I see! A joke! Ha I like that one!" he proclaimed as Adelia rolled her eyes walking past the old man. A few corridors along she came to the medicae. Some of it had been shut off, some illness had been caught by a couple of guardsmen although it seemed to be contained. She walked into the area and could see Ghronx's body lying on a bed, a couple of machines seemed to be hooked up to him. A man in civilian clothing bar an apron walked over to her, giving her a courteous nod. "Adelia I believe?" Adelia nodded, "Yeah, hows he doing?" "Not great, I'm afraid. He was found unconscious but barely breathing, we're hoping we can stablize him." the man said. "And you are?" Adelia asked. "Claus, I'm the medic here. Well sort of, not offcially but I've had some training. Not military grade training but just down in the Hive." he explained. "Good to have you here Claus. Hows my girls doing?" Claus checked his dataslate and scrolled through the hologram. " out of the 17 casualties, 4 were dead on the battlefield, and we lost another 3 since. The others should be alright to some level however." Adelia felt relieved that more were not lost, and patted the balding Claus on the back. "Appreciated Claus. Let me know if Ghronx wakes up." "Will do maam" replied the medic as he walked off to attend some of the wounded. Adelia had never been called that before, and it took her off guard. She thought back to her father and how he was an officer, and it seemed she would follow in his footsteps. 'Lets just hope I don't go crazy and see the shit he saw' she thought to herself.'

So tose Death Guards are brutal. Armour saves then extra saves on top of those on a 5+, they are hard to put down! I'm glad they're not cheap to bring too because facing a horde of them would make me cry. Well cry because of the challenge brought by the emperor of course... Ahem. 

A great game, I hope you enjoy the story I wrote too. Fancied doing it from a different perspective and theres probably a lot of mistakes but its all good. 

Whats next for the defenders of Probatious Hive? One thing is certain, there is always war!

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