Friday 10 February 2023

Trying out 9th edition Warhammer 40K

The other week, I managed to make it down to Dark Sphere to get in my first game of ninth edition 40K. To keep it manageable, we kept it down to 1,000 points. We rolled for a mission from the Arks of Omen pack, and got the Incursion Mission "Desperate Raid".

My opponent brought a Necron force with a bunch of Warriors, some Lychguard, a unit of Flayed Ones and I think some Immortals. They had a terrifying ability that meant they reduce the toughness of models they were in close combat with due to the radiation they are saturated with.

I hid most of my units away to avoid getting wrecked by Necron firepower in the first turn. The current competitive rules for 40K have half your victory points coming from the mission, and half from the secondary objectives you select yourself. To try and keep things simple, I chose the Adeptus Astartes missions Shock Tactics and the generic missions Grind it Down and Behind Enemy Lines. I realised only now when writing it up that Behind Enemy Lines and Shock Tactics are both in the same category and couldn't be taken together.

A ton of Necrons pour into the centre of the table, but fortunately only a few Marines fall to their fire, especially due to a well timed use of a Marine strategem that means that they can only be wounded on a 4+ for one set of attacks.

I use some Stratagems and a Chaplain litany to heavily buff up a unit of Assault Intercessors before yeeting them into the biggest unit of Necron Warriors, absolutely wrecking them and leaving only three alive. I could have used another stratagem to take a second attack, and chose not to. It later turned out that this was a mistake as while it would have been massive overkill, those three surviving Warriors survived the rest of the battle scoring an objective every turn for the rest of the game.

The Necrons then came up and counter attacked, wiping out the Assault Intercessors. This happened a few times as a Marine unit heavily damaged or destroyed a Necron unit, only to be wiped out in return.

The Necron player also brought on a unit of Flayed Ones into my deployment zone. Oh dear.

The Destroyers wrecked one of my Phobos combat squads in the ruins on the left of this photo...

But the Deathwatch Veterans proceeded to charge them and absolutely wreck them with a Xenophase Blade and Heavy Thunderhammer.

I still don't have a good idea of what "should" destroy something else. Some things I think will do a bit of damage, and absolutely wreck whatever they're hitting, while other attacks (particularly bolter fire) seemed completely ineffective. I suspect this is knowledge will come with time.

The Flayed Ones charge into the Intercessor Kill Team, but spend most of the game slowly trying to kill them, and the Objective Secured ability scores me a bunch of points.

The combined Necron shooting wipes out the Veterans, and then the characters, meaning I'm running out of units to do anything.

The Intercessors stay bogged down, unable to put a dent in the Flayed Ones.

The Chaplain manages to hold up the Lychguard a little, but not much.

The Vanguard Veterans arrive and absolutely delete a unit with damage to spare. This is a definite equipment issue as they'd have probably been able to still do this with only one lightning claw and a Storm Shield, while having some tiny chance of surviving the follow up fire that wiped them out in practice.

The Hellblasters took some casualties but also had trouble removing much in return. They did overcharge to remove some big walker thing.

With the game done, we added up the points and my opponent hadn't quite understood the mission and had not scored as many points as I had. But, you know, I also hadn't selected a legal selection of secondaries. I'd also run the Xenos Hunters rule wrong for the first turn, applying some rerolling 1s to shooting when it should have just been Melee. And also forgotten Marine doctrines for the whole game.

It was definitely a learning game, is what I'm saying...

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