I caught a fun game over the weekend, against an excellent opponent. Without further ado, the game:
vs Mike’s White Scars: Khan, two land raider crusaders with termies, 3 squads of bikes utilizing hit N run
Space Wolves – Champions of Fenris list: Wolf lord on Thunderwolf, Iron Priest with Cyber wolves, Rune Priest (rolling on Bio), Thunderwolf squad, Bjorn (Brethren of the Fallen formation), 5 dreads of varying layout, 5 drop pods with Deathwinds
The Relic (3 points), Dawn of War deployment
I deployed my wolves in one large pack, and a rifle dread on my left flank, behind cover. Scout movement brought my opponent’s entire army up.
I failed to seize, and Mike easily sauntered on to the relic. Shooting against the Thunderwolves was ineffectual, while a couple of lucky shots blew up the rifle dread, despite a 4+ cover (First Blood to Mike). I charged the Thunderwolf posse into the bikers with the relic, while breaking off the Iron Priest in order to tackle one of the Land Raiders (in retrospect, I should have just multi-charged, since my Thunderwolf riders had melta bombs). I dropped 3 pods behind the Relic blob: Bjorn and Murderfang landed on target, while the melta dread scattered back slightly. Shooting took out some bikes and the multimelta from the Land raider, while assault obliterated the relic-wielding biker squad (leaving only one attack bike with one wound left, which ran out of combat and would inevitably come back to haunt me). The Iron Priest failed to dent the land raider and was invariably left flapping in the breeze.
Mike surrounded my wolves with his two bike squads and then disembarked his terminators: shooting did a few wounds, but assault took out the Iron Priest and Thunderwolves (although they caused considerable casualties as well), leaving my wolf lord clawing at the relic. My last two dreads (venerables sporting Fenrisian Axes and shields) dropped in. Bjorn wrecked the healthy land raider, while the MM dread blasted the other to oblivion. Murderfang charged in and decimated termies as only he can.
More shooting from the bikes targeted dreads, and Murderfang was unfortunately blown to slag, while the 3++ saves kept the flanking Axe/shield dread from harm. The termies were gone at this point, and Bjorn and an axe dread charged one squad of bikes, while the lone axe dread on the flank charged Khan’s squad. The dreads began their dismantling of the bikers, who failed to hit and run.
Combat finishes off the bikers, although Khan and one mm bike manage to hit and run out of combat. The relic is still held by my wolf lord (with one wound remaining), and I wrap him up with dreads. Mike just has Khan and two attack bikes left of his army.
Mike keeps his wounded attack biker in my startzone; he breaks Khan off from the other bike: Khan skirts around the buildings in an attempt to get to the relic, while the last attack bike shoots at Bjorn but fails to get through. In turn, Bjorn blasts the lone bike and then assaults it, while an axe dread fails his charge against Khan. If the game ends, I win 4-1…But it goes on.
Khan skirts around the dreads and is able to make assault with my lord; Khan takes wounds, but deals the last wound to my warlord and nabs the relic. I move my dreads into assault position (3 dreads should be overkill on a wounded Khan). However, I take a shot with Bjorn’s Helfrost cannon: Khan takes a wound, fails his strength test, and the relic is dropped just out of my grasp. We roll to see if it goes on…And the game ends. Since the relic is not claimed, I have Linebreaker and Slay the Warlord, while Mike has Linebreaker (thanks to his wounded bike; the only unit of his left on the board), Slay the Warlord, and First Blood. He gets an additional VP (rolled a ‘2’ on d3) since Khan killed my warlord in a challenge. Mike takes the game, 4 – 2. Victory is guaranteed for me if the game goes on, but alas, it was not meant to be.
With my Thunderwolves tied up in combat, this became a classic game of cat and mouse, with my opponent using his mobility to the utmost. Mike did a nice job of skirting around dreads to contest the relic. This was really his only recourse, and it paid off. I had a number of errors that will hopefully sink in: 1) I forgot to roll any Hammer of Wrath hits for any of my units…Big mistake. 2) Multi-charging on turn 1 would have been beneficial, rather than breaking off my Iron Priest/cyber wolves. The Priest did draw fire the following turn, but he would have added more value by staying in the wolf blob (where he could LoS the AP2 hits to something with a better invul save).
I am consistently impressed with the performance of the dreads (especially the Axe/shield vens). One of the venerables solo’d an Imperial Knight in my last game; that 3++ is not to be underestimated. The lack of mobility hurts, although running can alleviate this somewhat.