Last Friday we got together for a big 4 player game of Warzone. So what did we play?
Major Richard Meier was not too happy. Just last week a Mishima force had landed in the regions of Venus guarded by Bauhaus 274th Garnisions Regiment. The had caught the roops in the region in the rear, their lines being orientated towards the Dark Legion citadel close by. As usual when the enemy managed to break the Bauhaus lines in the cold regions of Venus, it fell to the 23rd Gebirgssturm Brigade to push them back and this time Meiers battalion had drawn the short straw. His attack was scheduled for tomorrow and now that they were making final preparations he was called to a meeting with the Fenrisbrigades commanding officer. He did not like having his preparations interrupted at such a moment. But what he liked less was an operation being called off. He really hoped, that his was not what this meeting was about.
Meier entered the office, snapped his heels together and saluted. Out of the corner of his eye he noticed another person in the office, but could not clearly make him out. “Herr Major, how far are your preparations for the liberation of Schwarzbrunn?” “Well under way, sir. My Rangers scouting the area have reported that the Mishima forces have set up positions facing our lines only. It seems they rely on the hope that the Dark Legion has not noticed they have taken over our holdings, so they can leave their rear unguarded until reinforced.” “I fear their plans are more sinister than that!” said the other person lurking in the shadows of the room. Rising from behind his desk the commanding officer said “May I Introduce you to Inquisitor Ignatius. He has some information you might find interesting. Inquisitor…” “The Brotherhood has gained information, that this attack last week, was not sanctioned by neither the Mishiman Overlord, nor the Lord Heirs. This was the action of one heretical Clan, trying to establish a holding of their own. They are not hoping that the Legion has not noticed their presence. The Legion actually knows they are there fully well. Tomorrow at dawn there will be a high level meeting between the head of the Clan and a leading Nepharite of Algaroth. And we want to purge the heretics. The Bauhaus high command has assured us your support. Will your troops be able to smash a way through the enemy lines for us so we can crash the party?” At this Meier grinned. “One of my Venusian Ranger squad leaders was born and raised in Schwarzbrunn. Why smash through the enemy lines when we have an unguarded mountain pass to get into their rear and crash their party!”
And so they did! We had already split our forces up in teams. Arnd (Mishima) and Andreas (Dark Legion) on one side (“team evil”) with Ingo (Brotherhood) and myself (Bauhaus) on the other (“team good”). And the forces were:
Mishima: A custom Demon Hunter Warlord, a squad each of Ronin Samurai, Hatamoto, Demon Hunters and Shadow Walkers, as well as two Meka suits combined into one squad.
Dark Legion: Galgotha as Warlord, two squads of Undead Legionaries (with Necromutant Leader) and one of Necromutants, two 2-men squads of Nasca Razides and a two-men squad of Praetorian Stalkers.
Brotherhood: A custom Sacred Warror Warlord, one squad each of Troopers (with Inquisitor leader), Inquisitors, Mortificators and Guardiani Oblati as well as two squads of Sacred Warriors (one led by Lukas).
Bauhaus: Custom Juggernaut Warlord, two squads each of Hussars and Etoiles Mortant, one squad of Venusian Rangers and four Vorreiter combined into one squad.
The table was a rectangle (2,5m x 1,5m) cut in half by a river which in turn was spanned by a large stone bridge. There were a few small woods and bushes on the board. Also some houses (two of them ruins) and gardens lined by hedges.
We rolled for missions and got an Ambush. Team evil chose to be the defender, so team good had to place our units first being the attacker (pretty strange, but that is the rules). Each of us had to have one unit within 6″ of every board edge. Ingo put his Warlord and Sacred Warriors on one of the long edges with the Inquisitors in the near corner. Going clockwise from there, came my Vorreiter on the short edge. On the next long edge, but on the other side of the river came one squad of Hussars, the Troopers and the smaller squad of Sacred Warriors in the corner. My other squad of Hussars and the Bauhaus Warlord were in the remaining corner.
Team Evil had to set up all units with at least 2 men of every squad within 6″ of the table centre. So essentially they all huddled on the bridge, in the river and on its banks. The only exception were the Demon Hunters. On account of them being Dispersible (they double the range for their coherency) they formed a long line from the deployment zone pointing towards the Bauhaus Warlord. All in all there was a distinct emphasis on that flank with almost all units of team evil oriented that way.
Next came our infiltrating units. The Venusian Rangers deployed in the ruins on the neglected side of the boards, while the Mortificators deployed near the Bauhaus Warlord in the woods and hedges.
The objective was for team good to reduce team evil to about ¼ of its initial forces by the end of turn 5. We all had a Corporate Agenda mission as well, but we all completed ours so I am not going to go into that.
We had decided, to roll for initiative within a team and then had the winner roll for team initiative, with the order of activation alternating between the teams. On the first round Ingo won. Up next would be Arnd, then me and Andreas last.
Ingo began with his Warlord, who played a card that would prevent Galgotha from using her skills (including the one which would deny one of our units all cover). After moving forward a bit, he called in an artillery strike on the bridge, which killed one Ronin Samurai, two Undead Legionaries and caused two Nasca Razides from one squad a wound each. Up next came Arnd. He wanted his Meka suits save from harm and played a Snipe of the Cobra card on my Venusian Ranger with the rocket launcher. He failed his armour test and our best anti vehicle weapon was gone (not that it would matter too much). But he also activated his Demon Hunters and the squad leader and the other Hunter hammered my Warlord with their HMGs. Inspite of a massive 7 or 8 hits, the Bauhaus Warlord saved all but one (and that one would later in that round be healed by a special piece of equipment build into his suit). Now I activated my Hussars near the Warlord. It was obvious, that my Warlord was going to be the prime target so they moved into position to screen him. Three of them also managed to get some shots off at the Demon hunters and inspite of their good armour and high Heal skill, they even managed to wound the trooper. Now it was Andreas turn and he advanced his Necromutant squad at my other Hussars. They started firing at the closest Hussar, but he managed to take shot after shot with his armour. Frustrated Andreas shifted his fire on the squad leader, only to have the seemingly bulletproof Hussar throw himself in harms way and take the shots for his NCO.
At this point, it was Ingos turn again. He activated his larger squad of Sacred Warriors to move them forward and protect his Warlord, but Lukas also used a skill which would deny the Mishima Meka suits cover for the rest of the round. Arnd found most of his troops boxed in on the bridge and decided to activate his Hatamoto and move them towards the riverbank. Now I decided to go Warlord hunting myself and Rapid Deployed my first Etoiles Mortant squad close to Galgotha. Unfortuntely for them, the Mishima Warlord had an early warning system and saw them drop from the skies. So he was able to fire at them before they do anything. Two of them took the hits on their armour, but the trooper with the flamethrower died. Her mate picked up the flame thrower though and fired it at both enemy Warlords. They had enough troops around who willingly sacrificed themselves, but none the less this still killed two Undead Legionaries and two Ronin Samurai. The remaining three Etoiles Mortant charged Galgotha in the rear and managed to cause her two wounds. When Andreas activated, he found most of his troops in no position to come to Galgothas help, so he actived his two Nasca Razides close by. One went into Sentry, while the other shot at the Hussar who had so far managed to survive all the fire coming at him. This time it was too much, but we calculated that it had taken well over 20 shots (with more than half of them being hits) to kill him! Unfortunately he also managed to kill the Hussar squad leader.
Ingo now actived his Inquisitors. They advanced towards the enemy and their squad leader cast a spell on one of the Meka suits damaging it in the hull. With things heating up around them, the Mekas decided to charge the Etoiles Mortant and whipped them out in close combat. While charging through the river, the one that had already been damaged took some more damage to its legs. With things having gone well for the first Etoiles attack I decided to deploy the second squad as well. But their combat drop did not go as well. They scattered into the Razides and being stunned were unable to do anything else. In turn they would be cut up by the Razide who had gone into Sentry and by Andreas now activating his Undead Legionaries. To add insult to injury, one of the Etoiles was also turned into an Undead Legionary when she was killed by the Necromutant squad leader.
At this point, Ingo advanced his Troopers and managed to get some shots at the Necromutants (but I cannot tell to what end, since I was away from the table for a few minutes). Arnd also advanced his Mishima Warlord towards the Bauhaus one. I activated my Warlord and he fired his HMG at the Demon Hunters, killing the one who had already been wounded and wounding the squad leader. Andreas advanced this other Razides out of the river and towards the Bauhaus Warlord with guns blazing. But failed to wound him, but they wiped out two Hussars close by.
The next activation saw Ingo advance his remaining Sacred Warriors and Arnd his Remaining Ronin Samurai. Now the Vorreiter charged forward and hammered the Meka suits with their HMGs. Andreas tried to prevent this by playing a Dark Legion card that would keep me from firing, but Ingo managed to take that out of play with one of his cards (never have I been so happy to see Brotherhood on the table!!!). Unfortunately they spread their damage on virtually all locations, but destroyed the already damaged one. Andreas advanced his remaining Undead Legionaries.
The rest of the first round was quiet uneventful, with the remaining troops either advancing or my Venusian Rangers firing their rifles at the Legionaries on the bridge, killing one. The Praetorian Stalkers deployed on the side of the river where the majority of the team evil troops were.
Before the next round began, Arnd placed markers for his Shadow Walkers amidst the pines close to the Bauhaus Warlord. Now it would be crucial who would win the initiative for him to survive. But Arnd won the initiative, so this would be hard. Next would be me, followed by Andreas and Ingo coming last.
Obviously Arnd activated his Shadow Walkers first and their markers were replaced with actual miniatures. He played another Snipe of the cobra on the Hussar blocking their approach on my Warlord killing him. Now the two Shadow Walkers charged my Warlord, scoring seven hits. This was though luck, since their attacks do not allow for armour saves (unless it is impenetrable armour, which has to be re-rolled on a successful test) or heal rolls. But he managed to save three of them. This cost him all his four wounds, but then the chemical resuscitator kicked in and he regained his last wound, keeping him alive! It is amazing how good my dice were that day! Up next came m Vorreiter. Their initial goal was to shoot the remaining Meka, but that one was covered by the two Nasca Rizides close by and hard to hit. So the first two Vorreiter shot at the Razides, killing them both. Now the other two were free to shoot at the Meka, hitting it in the rear and leaving it barely intact. Unfortunately, their fire also killed the last remaining Etoiles Mortant, but a small sacrifice it was. Andreas used a card to remove his Praetorian Stalkers from the board and Re-rapid Deploy them close to the Vorreiter. Their drop went wrong, but they did not scatter too far. One of them was close enough to use this flame thrower on two of my Vorreiter.
Just like I had seen in my previous game, these weapons are so strong, they cut through any vehicles armour and it was no different this time… both Vorreiter perished! The other Stalker fired his HMG at the Vorreiter squad leader, but only managed to damage his bike. Ingo activated his Inquisitors, again all they could do was advance and have the squad leader cast a spell at the Meka, but damaged as it was, this was enough to destroy it.
There was not much, that Arnd could do, so he advanced one of his Demon Hunters. I activated my Venusian Rangers who moved out of the ruins and fired at Galgothas back, causing her one more wound (she was now down to only one). Andreas activated his Necromutants who cut into Ingos troopers and my Hussars with their fire. Ingos Troopers also took a heavy beating, loosing all men but the Inquisitor leader. Now Ingo activated his Mortificators again and they charged forwards throwing grenades and blazing away with their pistols. The first used a flame-thrower like ability to toast the Demon Hunter squad leader and kill a Necromutnat. The others managed to kill the remaining Ronin and inflict a massive 4 wounds on the Mishima Warlord. His resuscitator failed to kick in and he was dead.
At this point we had to call it a day since one of us had to leave. While we had already played a couple of hours, we had only gotten into the second round, but it was clear to see where things were going. Ingo had only lost his troopers and I about a third of my points. While my Warlord was in a pretty bad shape, we were sure that he would be able to take care of the Shadow Walkers with some help of the Hussars, especially since the Mortificators were releaving the pressure on him. The Brotherhood Warlord was still in mint condition, protected by his best troops and his Guardiani Oblati bodyguards still undeployed. On the other hand, Arnd had lost more than ¾ of his force and was left only with a squad of Hatamoto and half a squad of Demon Hunters. Andreas was better off. Galgotha was in as bad a shape is the Bauhaus Warlord, but presented a good target. His two remaining Nasca Razides were down to one wound each and we all agreed that the Praetorian Stlakers would not last a round, if my Vorreiter were to activate first. So we all agreed, that this would have resulted in a win for team good!
All in all it was a pretty bloody fight, especially since team evil decided to concentrate its fire on one flank, virtually ignoring the other. In can not speak for the other team, but I had a feeling that Bauhaus and Brotherhood paired quite well. For the first time I had the feeling that Bauhaus really packed some punch in this combination where the other side was not able to influence me as much with their cards. Having already seen the revised Bauhaus cards, I think they shall do fine on their own in the future as well. Oh and for those interested, we played with the V1.3 errata of the rules previewed last week.