Monday, 11 March 2013

Chaos Daemons - First Contact

Today, something a little different.I'm a little disillusioned with the Dark Angels to be perfectlyhonest and I will get round to finishing the series in the next fewdays. However, in today's post I'm going to be taking a look atDaemons, and how they have changed, as I played against them at the Oxford GamingClub tonight. Hopefully this should be a weekly thing where every Monday night is OGC night.

Oh, and by the way, if you want to heremore about Battlefield Birmingham, or me getting absolutely destroyedby a Dark Eldar army, then check out the 40kuk podcast, the episodein question being number 64.

In the last incarnation of the Codex,Daemons were an absolutely awful match up for me. They were toodurable for me to deal with as I didn't have the weight of fire, theytook away my armour save which was imperative for my survival andthey were much faster than me. However, they have changed dramatically. I played against a Daemon army on Thursday and myopponent surrendered on his turn 2 (he went first) as I was about totable him but as it was on a 4” x 4” board it doesn't count, as 40k becomes a whole different game when you change the board size.

Today I was prepping for the GT, which I may or may not be participating in, if not then I'll be doing livereports that you can follow if that's your thing. But anyway, we were playing a larger points level. 2,000 to be precise, a little more than the GT but it gave me an opportunity to try out some new units, I was running:

2 Rune Priests with Runic Armour,

A Primaris Psyker,

2 Lone Wolves, Terminator Armour, Thunder Hammer / Storm Shield,

3 Wolf Guard in Terminator Armour,

6 Grey Hunters, Wolf Standard /Meltagun,

2 squads of 7 Grey Hunters, Wolf Standard / Meltagun,

A 40 man Guard blob with Vox Caster in both an Infantry Squad and the Platoon Command, 2 Flamers, 2 Grenade Launchers,


2 packs of 6 Long Fangs with Missiles,

3 Thunderwolves with 2 Storm Shields and Power Fist.

My opponent was running Chaos Daemons,as I've already mentioned, and he had (or at least I remember hehad):

20 Horrors,

20 Daemonettes,

20 Bloodletters,

Herald of Tzeentch,

Herald of Khorne,

Herald of Slaanesh,

Bloodthirster (Warlord),

3 Fiends,

Exalted Slaanesh Chariot,

3 Screamers,

Soul Grinder.

And I think that's it. Anyway, onto the game.

We ended up with Dawn of War and the Emperor's Will. This is one of the better missions for me as I can generally pound your objectives with things like the Manticore and push and contest it with Lone Wolves. Dawn of War, probably my leastfavourite but it still isn't bad.

In terms of psychic powers and pre-game things he rolled a bunch of stuff that didn't mean anything to me, I heard the word Prescience mentioned a couple of times but I'vealready forgotten about most of the other stuff. I really need to get onto this Daemon analysis. He also got the Warlord trait that allows his Bloodthirster to gain wounds every time he causes them,convicting me to keep him away from the Guard blob, even with all ofthe force weapons in it.

My psychic powers were actually prettygood. My Warlord got the 4+ invulnerable power (Forewarning) and theignores cover power (Perfect Timing), whilst my other Rune Priest got Prescience and Misfortune. My Primaris Psyker picking up Warp Speed and the Feel No Pain / Relentless Power (Endurance).

I won the roll for first turn, andchose to take it. I set up in the left 2/3rds of the board. The Blobdead in the centre, ready to move to wherever it was needed, LongFangs were set up on the hill on the far left with the Manticorebehind. The 2 larger Grey Hunter Packs pushing the edge of my deployment zone, with another pack of Long Fangs a little behindready to receive Endurance and move forward whilst still able to fireat full BS. My Platoon Command Squad sat behind my blob whilst mysmaller Grey Hunter pack camped the objective, the Lone Wolvesflanking the blob to keep Bloodthirsters from hitting it.

My opponent deployed opposite, the onlyexception being his Bloodthirster who set up on my far right, the Exalted Chariot, Screamers and Fiends directly opposite my blob, the Soul Grinder opposite my Manticore with his Horrors and Herald sat onhis objective, which also happened to be directly opposite mine. He also chose to reserve his Daemonettes with Herald, his Bloodletterswith Herald and his Flamers.

The game begins and he fails to seizethe initiative.

The first thing that I attempt to do is cast Endurance on my Long Fangs, to move them up and get better line of sight. Dice hit the table, a pair of 5s, I'm leadership 9. Crap. No matter, my Grey Hunters, Blob, Thundercav (who are on the far left ready to screen the Grey Hunters and attract the attention of the Soul Grinder to bring it into the open), and 2 Lone Wolves march up. The 4+ invulnerable goes off on my blob and I cast Prescience on the now immobile Long Fangs, who open up on the Fiends, killing them to the last one who is promptly finished off by the blob earning First Blood.

The Manticore fires at the Exalted Chariot, but only gets 1 missile and the 5+ invulnerable save is passed. However, the second pack of Long Fangs do manage to stun it,allowing me to ignore it for a turn. 

His turn comes around, and he starts moving the Bloodthirster and the Screamers up, the Soul Grinder moves too but can only move 2” in the area terrain. Additionally, my opponent attempts to improve the invulnerable save of the Screamers, but rolls a 2 meaning that they now only have a 6+ save. 

The 2 Forces come to Logger-heads
They thencharge headlong into the Lone Wolf, who kills 2 leaving the other one to die to Daemonic Instability, consolidating towards the Bloodthirster in the ruins. On another note, he also wounds one ofthe Thunderwolf Cavalry with the Soul Grinder's shooting and kills one of my Wolf Guard wound tanks with the Horrors.

My turn 2, and things start to happen.The Exalted Chariot passes another invulnerable save from the Manticore, but the Long Fangs do the business and explode it. Anotherpack of Long Fangs and the blob open up on the Bloodthirster,wounding it a couple of times, at least giving my Lone Wolf a chance.I plough my Lone Wolf into the Bloodthirster, trying to hold it up to stop it from getting at the blob, but the Lone Wolf adds to his tallyafter killing the Screamers and somehow beats down the enemy Warlordearning a second victory point.

The Thunderwolf Cavalry barrel into the Horrors, but on this occasion perform woefully, leaving only a PowerFist and a single wound Storm Shield model.

However, in his turn things alsohappen. All of his reserves come in, his Flamers dropping in front of the Horrors and melting a pack of Grey Hunters to 1 man. The Soul Grinder charges into the Thundercav to bail out the Horrors themselves, a duty that it conducts admirably, killing them. The Bloodletters also drop down in-between the Lone Wolves with the Daemonettes coming in after, to the right of them.

This is where I think my opponent makesa bit of a mistake. Coming for his objective are the Grey Hunters,the Lone Wolves and the blob, and the Bloodletters and Daemonettes,were, I didn't think, enough to take that. What I would have done isforgotten about the Chaos Icons, and have dropped back into my owndeployment zone and tried to contest it, as back there I do not havethe quantity of attacks / shots to bring him down. But anyway, theydrop in front of the Lone Wolf. He then proceeds to run them to avoid Manticore death.

Reinforcements have arrived
My turn 3, the blob ravages the Daemonettes, felling them to within an inch of their life, leaving but one Daemonette left. The Lone Wolves then charge into the Bloodletters, the one which felled the Screamers and Bloodthirster then challenging out the Herald of Khorne and promptly killing him.The Grey Hunters then smash the Horrors, killing them to a man aswell. This really is the turn where the fate of the game is sealed tobe honest. My opponent has his Soul Grinder left, a lone Daemonette,and about 15 Bloodletters tied up in combat. I am sat on bothobjectives, and have all 3 of the secondaries.

To summarise the rest of the game, heattempts to charge his Soul Grinder into the blob, misses the charge,gets gunned down to 1 hull point before finally being finished offthrough a Long Fang packs overwatch when I move them out of coverafter Endurance, baiting him away from my blob. He then charges hislone Daemonette into the swirling melee in the centre of the board,and in response I through a tonne of attacks in the form of the Forewarned blob in. This was also the first turn in which my opponent's Invulnerable save is improved rather than worsened, he gotvery unlucky on that front, having to rely on the Warp Storm table for this improvement. However, it's not quite enough as I table him turn 4.

The Last Stand
The most successful Daemon lists that i've seen around at the minute are those that are taking a multitude of Monstrous Creatures. For example, I witnessed a game on Friday where one of my friends had great success with a list that included 5 Monstrous Creatures including Ku'Gath. This is because they can weather the torrent of fire that we're seeing at the minute a lot better. In short, I learnt a lot about the new Daemons, but I don't think that I would have won quite as comprehensively had my opponent not been so unlucky with his saves, so apologies to him.

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