30k Zone Mortalis Batrep: Imperial Fists vs. Ultramarines


It’s Legion vs Legion in a 30k Battle Report – Zone Mortalis style!

I played a 1000 point game of Zone Mortalis this afternoon with my Imperial Fists versus Ultramarines. The mission was Void Strike from the Horus Heresy Blood in the Void rules. Note these missions are a series of boarding actions that take place inside a spaceship… Pretty cool and you roll to see what effects take place inside the ship at the beginning of each turn!

Both Legions want to be the first to launch a surprise assault versus the hated Word Bearers on a nearby undisclosed planet but cannot reach an agreement who’ll get the honor. The two Praetors meet and decide that both will select a small war party to battle each other… the victor wins the right to first strike versus the traitors.

I wanted to field an army with no special characters and also use a unique unit that you don’t see often (i.e., Destroyers led by a Moritat).

+++ Imperial Fists Zone Mortalis (1000) +++

+ Legion +

Legion Astartes [Loyalist, VII: Imperial Fists]

++ Legiones Astartes: Age of Darkness Army List ((Zone Mortalis) Combatant) ++

+ HQ (275) +

Legion Centurion (135) – High Chaplain Hector Auroras /Warlord
Artificer Armour – Charnabal Sabre – Power Fist – Refractor Field

Unit Type: Infantry (Character)

Legion Centurion (140) – Moritat Murdoch McClinton
[Artificer Armour – Jump Pack – Melta Bombs – 2x Volkite Serpenta – Rad Grenades

Unit Type: Jump Infantry (Character)

+ Elites (550) +

Legion Destroyer Squad (285)
4x Legion Destroyer Space Marine
Jump Packs – Missile Launcher with Suspensor Web and Rad Missiles
Legion Destroyer Sergeant – Artificer Armour – Phosphex Bombs – Power Fist

Legion Destroyer Space Marine: Unit Type: Infantry

Legion Destroyer Sergeant: Unit Type: Infantry (Character)

Legion Terminator Squad (265)
4x Legion Terminators (Cataphractii Terminator Armour) – Plasma Blaster – 3x Power Fist – Thunderhammer – 3x Vigil Pattern Storm Shield
Legion Terminator Sergeant – Thunderhammer -mVigil Pattern Storm Shield

Legion Terminator: Unit Type: Infantry

Legion Terminator Sergeant: Unit Type: Infantry (Character)

+ Troops (175) +

Legion Tactical Squad (175)
9x Legion Tactical Space Marines – Combat Blades
Legion Tactical Sergeant – Artificer Armour – Melta Bombs – Power Fist

Legion Space Marine: Unit Type: Infantry

Legion Sergeant: Unit Type:Infantry (Character)

Here’s my opponent’s Ultramarines army list:

+++ Ultramarines +++

+ Legion +

Legion Astartes [Loyalist, XIII: Ultramarines]

++ Legiones Astartes: Age of Darkness Army List ((Zone Mortalis) Combatant) (1000) ++

+ HQ (105) +

Legion Centurion (105) – Chaplain /Warlord
Artificer Armour – Power Maul – Bolt Pistol – Refractor Field

Unit Type:Infantry (Character)

+ Elites (315) +

Invictarus Suzerain Squad (315)
9x Invictarus Suzerains – Thunderhammer

Invictarus Suzerain: Unit Type: Infantry

+ Troops (290) +

Legion Tactical Squad (150)
9x Legion Tactical Space Marine
Legion Tactical Sergeant – Artificer Armour – Power Fist

Legion Space Marine: Unit Type: Infantry

Legion Sergeant: Unit Type:Infantry (Character)

Legion Tactical Squad (140)
9x Legion Tactical Space Marines
Legion Tactical Sergeant – Power Fist

Legion Space Marine: Unit Type: Infantry

Legion Sergeant: Unit Type: Infantry (Character)

+ Fast Attack (290) +

Locutarus Storm Squad (290)
9x Locutarus
Locutarus Strike Leader – Power Fist

Locutarus: Unit Type: Jump Infantry

Locutarus Strike Leader: Unit Type:Jump Infantry (Character)

My opponent was the attacker and I was the defender. You must split your army into two groups – one group is deployed while the other is held in reserve…

Imperial Fists (Defenders):

Deployed – Moritat+Destroyers, Tactical Squad
Reserves – Chaplain+Terminators

The Moritat and his Destroyers deploy hidden inside a building while the tactical squad deploys beside them out in the open.

Ultramarines (Attackers):

Deployed – Chaplain+Suzerain, Tactical Squad
Reserves – Storm Squad, Tactical Squad

The Chaplain and his Suzerain deploy along one flank while the tactical squad deploys in the middle out in the open.

Victory Conditions

– You score one victory point for each enemy unit slain
– The attacker scores a victory point for each unit that finishes the game in the enemy deployment zone
– The defender scores a victory point if no enemy units are in their deployment zone at the end of the game (Denial)
– Bonus victory points for First Blood and Slay the Warlord

Mission Rules
– Attacker goes first
– Random game length

Note I opted not to try to seize the initiative.

Turn 1 – Stable (spaceship internal environment is stable – no effects)

Ultramarines 1st Turn:
– The Chaplain and his Suzerain move and run straight forward into a middle zone using intervening terrain for cover. The first tactical squad also moves and run straight forward into the middle zone as well.

Imperial Fists 1st Turn:
– The Moritat and his Destroyers elect to hold their ground remaining hidden behind their ruin except for the Marine with the rad missile launcher who pops up top and cranks a shot killing one of the Ultramarine tacticals.

Turn 2 – Power Surge (Night Fighting conditions this turn inside the spaceship)

Ultramarines 2nd Turn:
– The Storm squad arrives from reserve and uses their jump packs to move their full distance up the center of the table then run. The Chaplain and his Suzerain remain on their flank moving and running straight ahead. The tactical squad also moves and runs forward as well in between the other two Ultramarine units.

Imperial Fists 2nd Turn:
– High Chaplain Auroras and his terminators arrive from reserve moving into position to support their tactical squad. The Moritat and his Destroyers take the bait bounding up towards the Ultramarines tactical squad. Combined firepower from the Imperial Fists wipe out all of the tactical squad except for their sergeant who breaks and falls back… Note that the Moritat elected to use Chain Fire for a total of 17 hits !!!

Turn 3 – Hull Quake (open terrain inside the spaceship becomes difficult terrain and difficult terrain becomes dangerous)

Ultramarines 3rd Turn:
– The second tactical squad arrives from reserve and takes a defensive position in the middle of the table
– The Chaplain and his Suzerain move and run again closing the gap to my battle line
– The Storm squad charges my Moritat and his Destroyers; only the Destroyer Sergeant survives and does not break

Imperial Fists 3rd Turn:
– Tactical squad and terminators angle into a better position for shots on the lone Ultramarine tactical Sergeant but fail to bring him down (my opponent made some great saves!)
– The Destroyer Sergeant dies this turn in the ongoing melee failing one of three 2+ saves (Q_Q); the Storm squad consolidates forward

Turn 4 – Stable (no effects this turn)

Ultramarines 4th Turn:
– The Storm squad and Suzerain both combi charge my tactical squad wiping them out

Imperial Fists 4th Turn
– Chaplain Auroras and his terminators charge the Storm squad and destroy them in the ensuing melee

Turn 5 – Power Surge

The game then continued for seven full turns featuring the two Chaplains and their elite retinues slugging it out in close combat, both sides bound and determined to earn their Legion the honor of first strike versus the traitorous Word Bearers. Only the Imperial Fist terminator sporting the plasma blaster walked away from the brawl accounting for both the enemy Chaplain and most of the Suzerain… Some epic grappling indeed !!!

The final count was as follows for total victory points:

Ultramarines – 4 VP + First Blood & Slay the Warlord (6)
Imperial Fists – 3 VP + Slay the Warlord + Denial (5)

If only I could have killed that one remaining sergeant from the first Ultramarines tactical squad ! Oh well it was not to be but my surviving terminator has been promoted to a Captain and will be honored with leading a hand picked kill team to join in the initial assault of the Word Bearers… He was definitely the man of the match !!! My Destroyer sergeant almost survived the second round of melee versus the Ultramarines Storm squad… Would have most likely been a real game changer if he had been able to swing his power fist again.

Post Game Analysis:
Going after the first enemy tactical squad with the Moritat and his Destroyers was a big mistake on my part which in turn quickly lead to their demise… Should have kept them tucked away and popped shots from a safe distance with their rad launcher. While Destroyers are frowned upon as not a fundamentally sound unit (mostly due to their high point cost) I think they can provide a valuable role on the battlefield… Their speed and mix of arcane weapons makes for a deadly unit from range but obviously they are not well suited for melee.

Both the Ultramarines Suzerain and Storm Squad really pulled their weight. As noted above speed is vital in the close confines of Zone Mortalis. The Storm Squad struggles versus 2+ armor though which is their major drawback.

It was a great game ending in an epic melee that covered several turns… The lone terminator winning the fight was most definitely a morale victory for me.

  • Andrew Webb

    Great report! So happy to see a well written battle report instead of the video reports. Keep them coming!

  • euansmith

    Thanks for the written battle report. What’s the surface being played on? Its got an interesting texture.

  • Zingbaby

    The unpainted hurts my eyes! …still a pretty cool batrep, I also like these more than videos.

  • Hugh James Lamont

    Which side is which? Are the unpainted ones Imperial fists and the unassembled ones ultramarines?

  • effinger2

    Some of those models have no heads. How can they target the enemy…if they can even differentiate them from one another?

  • Crablezworth

    zone mortalis… with ruins

  • Aquila

    These are my Ultramarines. Sorry about the unfinished army, this was my first Horus Heresy game!
    If you’d like to see more of the army as it grows, I’ll be posting on the Heresy 30k boards here: