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Ard Boyz Batrep – Grey Knights versus Chaos Space Marines

8 Minute Read
Sep 7 2011
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Hi everyone, Black Blow Fly here again with another article! Today is an old school written battlereport.

Introduction
Lately I’ve been playing nothing but my Grey Knights so I really had to sit down and think about what I could write that would be interesting and helpful for 40k players. Sometimes I hear people say they find BoLS to be more centered on the hobby aspects of 40k rather than tactics and strategies – I don’t think that’s true though. I have read lots of good tactical articles here such as what Ben Mohile has to say. Also I like the fact that there is a diverse range of subjects posted here. Everyone has their own set of favorite blogs they visit to learn more about specific armies they play and how to counter effective builds they come up against often and need some tips to win. So to me it’s nice to read articles centered on other aspects of the game.

It seems like the audience here has had it’s fair share of Grey Knights tactics and list building articles for the time being so I thought instead of writing another tactical piece I’d post a batrep from one of my Ard Boyz practice games.

Ard Boyz Batrep
So now onto my Ard Boyz practice game battle report! I think it’s important to play as many practice games as possible for Ard Boyz. Typically you don’t play many games at the 2500 point level so it’s important to test your list to see how it performs and what tweaks are needed. Also you want to thoroughly familiarize yourself with each mission so there are no big surprises come game day.

After reviewing the preliminary missions I felt they would favor a Draigowing style of army – that is, killpoints, victory points and Seize Ground using the NOVA style 5×5 placement for objectives. I was worried about the Seize Ground mission but after playing it several times I found that this particular placement of the objectives is fair and doesn’t favor any particular style of army. As it turned out most of my gaming buddies wanted to play the Seize Ground mission which was fine by me as this is the one I thought would be the toughest for me.

This particular game was versus Chaos Space Marines.

Army Lists

– Grey Knights –

•Grand Master – rad grenades, pyskyotropic grenades, psycannon, sword
•Librarian – Might of Titans, Quicksilver, Sanctuary, Shrouding, Warp Rift, 2x servo skull, warding stave

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•Eversor Assassin
•Venerable dreadnought – 2x twin linked autocannon, psybolt ammo
•10x Paladin – 4x psycannon (broken into combat squads)

•5x GKT incl. Justicar Thawn – psycannon & daemonhammer
•5x GKT – psycannon & daemonhammer

•Dreadknight – personal teleporter & heavy incinerator
•Landraider Crusader – psybolt ammo

– Chaos Space Marines –

•Lash Sorcerer (joins Noise Marines on foot)
•Lash Sorcerer (joins Noise Marines in Rhino)

•Landraider – Havoc missile launcher
•10x Havoc – 4x lascannon

•10x Berzerker – power fist (ride inside landraider)
•10x Berzerker – power fist – Rhino
•10x Noise Marines – doom siren, blast master & sonic blaster
•9x Noise Marines – doom siren, blast master & sonic blaster – Rhino
•10x Plague Marine 2x meltagun & power fist – Rhino: Havoc missile launcher
•10x Plague Marine 2x meltagun & power fist – Rhino: Havoc missile launcher

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Mission
As stated above the mission was Seize Ground with the 5 x 5 objectives placed NOVA style and Spearhead deployment.

Deployment
My friend won the roll and opted to go first deploying his whole army in a castle with the Havocs and Noise Marines on foot forming up his fire base setup in a building.

I deployed as follows:

– Held both GKT squads in normal reserve – they would deep strike and I placed two servo skulls over in the table quarter adjacent to both our DZs along my long table edge.
– Reserved the Dreadknight who would come in off my long table edge.
– The combat squad of Paladins (4x psycannon) deployed behind cover along my long table edge right on the edge of my DZ.
– The Grand Master, Librarian and the other combat squad of Paladins boarded up in the Crusader behind a central building on the edge of my DZ.
– The Venerable dreadnaught setup behind the Crusader out of enemy LOS.
– The assassin setup behind cover behind in a building on the edge of my DZ in the table quarter adjacent to the CSM castle.

Grand Strategy
I rolled for the Grand Strategy and converted the Paladins and the Dreadknight into scoring units.

Seize the Initiative
I tried to seize the initiative but failed.

Pre Game Analysis
Lots and lots of power armor on the other side of the table! My plan was to first focus on popping Rhinos then dispatch the traitor units as they fell out of the wrecks. Mostly I could outrange the CSM army with shooting except for the Landraider and Havocs… I would have to rely upon the Librarian’s psychic power The Shrouding to protect my Crusader in the early phase of the game.

1st Turn – CSM
The castle spread with one squad of Berzerkers and Plague Marines moving towards the Eversor in their Rhinos while another squad of Plague Marines moved towards the objective in the far adjacent table quarter. The Berzerkers in the Landraider moved into that adjacent table quarter as well. Shooting was ineffective with no damage done.

1st Turn – Grey Knights
The psycannon toting Paladin squad moved into position to fire upon the Berzerker Rhino and popped it. The Venerable dreadnaught popped the rhino beside it transporting the Plague Marines  The Crusader stunned the other rhino full of Plague Marines. The assassin held tight. A very good turn for me popping two Rhinos and stunning another.

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2nd Turn – CSM
The squad of Noise Marines in the Rhino moved up to support the Berzerkers and Plague Marines – it was looking a bit lopsided in that table quarter in favor of the traitors. The Plague Marines and Berzerkers on foot both moved up to attempt to tap the assassin. Again shooting was ineffective for CSM with no damage scored. Both the Plague Marines and Berzerkers were short on the charge range to the assassin.

2nd Turn – Grey Knights
My Grand Master successfully rolled for Psychic Communion and in came all three squads held in reserve. The two squads of GKT used the servo skulls to come in safely and the Dreadknight flew in beside the Plague Marines. The Grand Master with his squad dismounted on the far side of the Crusader to target the other Plague Marine Rhino along with the Crusader and Venerable Dreadnought. Shooting saw the second Plague Marine Rhino popped. The psycannon toting Paladin combat squad targeted the Berzerkers on foot and dropped a few along with the assassin’s Executioner pistol. The Dreadknight flamed the Plague Marines and killed a couple. The other Plague Marine Rhino was popped along with the Noise Marines’ ride.  The Eversor then finished off the Berzerkers and the Dreadknight dropped three more Plague Marines in melee.

3rd Turn – CSM
The traitors on foot were caught flat footed with nothing to shoot or charge except the assassin and Thawn’s squad of GKT. The assassin was shot down and by some strange miracle Thawn’s squad passed all their saves. Again the Havocs and landraider failed to inflict any damage versus the Crusader. The Dreadknight then finished off the Plague Marines.

3rd Turn – Grey Knights
I felt this was the decisive turn. The Grand Master and his squad jumped back into their ride and the Crusader came out from behind cover to move onto the central objective in order to present a challenge to the Berzerkers in the Chaos landraider. The psycannon toting Paladins moved up to target the Noise Marines on foot while the Dreadknight flew over to assault them as well. Thawn’s squad moved up in position to support the Crusader while the Venerable hung back to fire potshots at the Havocs. Shooting saw the Noise Marines fail a bunch of saves from the psycannons then they lost even more to the Dreadknight’s incinerator. A lucky shot from my Crusader’s assault cannon wrecked the Chaos landraider… The Berzerkers then spilled out in front – shooting from my two GKT squads killed a good number of them. The Dreadknight then finished the turn assaulting the remnants of the Noise Marines – he focused all his attacks on the squad and only the Sorcerer managed to survive.

It was a very strong turn as the traitors’ castle was now exposed and I had blown up the Berzerkers’ ride taking solid control of the central objective.

4th Turn – CSM
The remaining Berzerkers that had spilled out of their wrecked Landraider moved up to assault my Crusader. The Plague Marines hiding behind their popped Rhino were too far away to move into an effective position to lend any real support so they moved and ran to hide behind the wrecked landraider. The Noise Marines in the Rhino with the other Sorcerer disembarked to shoot and assault Thawn’s squad of GKT. Shooting saw the Havocs fail to inflict any damage to my Crusader. The Berzerkers charged the Crusader but didn’t land any hits as it had moved over 6″. The Noise Marines lead by their Sorcerer shot up Thawn’s squad then charged them, killing them to the man but Thawn was able to insta gib the Sorcerer in return with his halberd… They also lost a few traitors as well. The Noise Marines then consolidated back towards their castle. Finally the Dreadknight took down the other Sorcerer and consolidated into position to attack the Havocs the next turn.

4th Turn – Grey Knights
While I felt the third turn was my most decisive this turn would be the coupe d’état. The Grand Master and his crew disembarked to finish off the Berzerkers while the Dreadknight was ready to assault the Havocs. The psycannon toting Paladins moved up to target the last of the Noise Marines. The game pretty much ended this turn as the forces of disorder were severely depleted while I still had the majority of my army left.

Final Tally
I ended up holding the central objective and one of the adjacent objectives while my opponent held none – remember that the remaining squad of Plague Marines had moved off the other adjacent objective to try supporting the Khorne Berzerkers that were forced to disembark from their wrecked Landraider.

Post Game Analysis
I felt my opponent had a good list but it shows the age of the CSM codex versus a new one such as Grey Knights. My dice were amazingly good… I think I only failed two 2+ armor saves over the course of the entire game. Taking out two Rhinos the first turn and stunning another put me ahead early in the game and my opponent never really recovered. Moving onto the central objective with a strong unit by midgame obviously helped a lot and by the fortune of the dice the Crusader survived one turn of shooting from the Havocs when it moved out into the open. Popping the Chaos Landraider with a rending shot from my Crusader was extremely fortunate as well since it denied the Berzerkers their much needed charge. The Dreadknight was my MVP but based on many of the other games I played I find him to be very hit or miss… If he fails one 2+ armor save he’s probably toast versus the amount of low AP shooting many armies can produce. The Dreadknight with a PT and HI costs almost as much as a Landraider – those points could go towards two more Psyflemen and I think overall they will produce a lot more damage in most games. He is really good versus hordes though so I’m not sure yet if I’ll drop him. This game he did very well since I could bring him in from long table edge – my opponent never had the opportunity to shoot the Dreadknight and he mowed right through everything he hit!

Post Ard Boyz Premlinary Rounds Thoughts
I made some changes to my list presented here for which I took to the Ard Boyz preliminary round and I’m planning to make a few other tweaks as well. Of course I might make some more changes after I have a chance to review the next batch of missions (I came in second placed where I played).

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So, what’s a canny Chaos Marine player to do these days in the face of the modern codices?  What would you have done differently if you were facing off against the Grey Knights?

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