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Astra Militarum
Tau Empire

1000 Points - Warhammer 40K Battle Report

Mission: Cloak & Shadows (Maelstrom of War)

By cadianshock

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We have a potential new player to our little group, this is his first game. 1,000 points seemed about the right level to start at.

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This game was for a new player so it was slow and steady and fairly small at 1,000 points. 

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Deployment & Terrain

Deployment was along the long table edges, we were playing on 6 x 4ft. The Guard Veteran Squads spread out, one left, one right and one in the middle (ish) in a building. Straken deployed in cover on the right. Russ in the centre and the Basilisk on the right flank. The tall buildings were terrible for line of sight for the Basilisk.

The Kroot all set up centrally, for objectives, the Riptide sured up in front of Stracken. A Devilfish of Firewarriors, another Firewarrior squad a Pathfinders all deployment on the right flank.

We used all city terrain and set up the table as we wanted before the game - none random. We also had some new Tau Ceti terrain to use.

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Turn 1 (Astra Militarum)

Guard went first and did very little moving. I forget the cards we had on each turn but I'll do my best to remember the general outcomes. 

The Basilisk was able to move up slightly and secure an objective while most other units stayed put. 

Heavy weapon teams with Autocannons opened up, as well as the Russ. The Basilisk was going to have a rough time due to the deployment proximity and the sight lines. 

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The Leman Russ surveys its sight lines - Turn 1 (Astra Militarum) (Image 2 of 4)

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Pathfinder face Autocannons, die and fall back - Turn 1 (Astra Militarum) (Image 3 of 4)

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Stracken hides as the Riptide (top right) bears down - Turn 1 (Astra Militarum) (Image 4 of 4)

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Turn 1 (Tau Empire)

A somewhat uneventful turn as the Tau moved forward to secure objectives to fulfil their cards. The Riptide moved forward and was bearing down on my right flank.

The Kroot in the centre were exposed while getting the central objective and the Tau's right flank remained relatively unchanged.

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Turn 2 (Astra Militarum)

This is where the Maelstrom missions, for me, do not work. They are fun but I was unlucky with the cards I was drawing. Objectives on the other side of the board, for example. We were discarding cards that were impossible - such as "Kill a Flier" as we had no fliers.

I managed to put a wound on the Riptide with a lucky Autocannon shot and a Chimera of Veterans came on with 2x Plasma guns. The exposed Kroot in the centre were shot up and fell back, rather annoyingly back beind cover.

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Chimera arrives with Veterans, Stracken hides - Turn 2 (Astra Militarum) (Image 2 of 2)

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Turn 3 (Astra Militarum)

Iron Hand Straken murdered the Riptide in melee which felt great. I was struggling again with objectives, even though I was discarding one per turn as well as discarding the impossible ones. I had chosen, in hindsight, the side of the board with fewer objectives. I went for better cover over objectives.

The Leman Russ was able to immobilise the Devilfish in the centre of the board.

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Battle overview - Turn 3 (Astra Militarum) (Image 2 of 2)

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Turn 3 (Tau Empire)

There isn't much to add here, the Tau Commander continued to whittle down my Company Command Squad and Straken was surviving as the Commander was his next target.

The Kroot in the centre continued to move about picking up objectives while the second set of Kroot sat in the same building for the whole game on a single objective.

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Turn 4 (Astra Militarum)

I wanted Straken to send the Tau Commander to his grave along with the Riptide, but it was not to be. He survived but he only got the Commander down to a single wound.

The Russ made a spectacular shot and kiled a whole bunch of Firewarriors. This meant they were no longer within 3" of an objective and I was able to re-take said objective for a single VP.

My left flank was gone, the single Veteran squad there had now been killed by repeated Pathfinder and Firewarrior fire.

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Turn 4 (Tau Empire)

We had called it game by about now as I had no chance of making up the difference in VPs. It was a good game but the Tau were always pulling away from the Guard when it came down the scoreboard.

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Man of the Match - Stracken

The beast of melee for the Guard, took down the Riptide in on fight phase and reduced the Tau Commander to one wound later on. He didn't die and was the only unit that performed correctly. I just wish I had waded him into their lines eariler.

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BFU - Me

I was playing Guard and I knew exactly what I wanted to do. I just did not do it. I let the enemy dictate the play of the game and moved to counter them, rather than move to complete my objectives. I did not PTFO.

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Final Summary

A safe win by Tau, 8 VPs to the Guard's 4 VPs. 

My deployment side was all wrong, I went for safety rather than the objectives. And I paid for it.The Tau could sit on my objectives without needing to move.

I also did not move as much as I needed to, I kept still and tried to win with shooting, which was silly. I should have got up closer to contest and take objectives rather than trying to shoot the Tau off objectives after they had gotten their VP.

The End - Where do you want to go now?

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