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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Battle Report: Dark Eldar Vs Deathwing!

Opposites attract as the swift, fragile Dark Kin take on the slow, lumbering but nigh on impenetrable Deathwing!

This is actually my second encounter against Carl's Deathwing. The first being a 1500pt Seize Ground mission whereby the Dark Eldar were able to out manoeuvre the Deathwing and take victory on turn 5. Two objectives to none and with only three terminators and an immobilised Landraider left in the enemy's control, I think had it have gone on to turn 6 the Deathwing would have been tabled. This time however the element of surprise would be lost. The Deathwing general knows what's coming...

Mission: Capture and Control
Deployment: Dawn of War
Size: 1750pts

The Dark Eldar:

Archon (Reaver Jetbike, Punisher, Combat Drugs, Shadow Field, Tormentor Helm, Haywire & Plasma Grenades)

Dracon (Agoniser, Splinter Pistol, Plasma Grenades)
5 Incubi (Plasma Grenades)

7 Wyches (Wych Weapons, Plasma Grenades) inc.  Succubus (Agoniser, Goblet of Spite, Haywire Grenades)

5 Warriors (Dark Lance)
5 Warriors (Dark Lance)
5 Warriors (Splinter Cannon)
5 Warriors (Splinter Cannon)
5 Warriors (Splinter Cannon)

10 Reaver Jetbikes (2 x Blaster)

Ravager   (3 x Disintegrators)
Ravager   (3 x Disintegrators)

The Deathwing (from memory):


Dreadnaught (Twin Linked Lascannon)
Dreadnaught (Twin Linked Lascannon)

Deathwing Terminator Squad (1 x Power Weapon,
1 x Assault Cannon, 2 x Storm Bolter, 1 x Chainfist)
Deathwing Terminator Squad (1 x Power Weapon,
1 x Assault Cannon, 2 x Storm Bolter, 1 x Chainfist)

3 x Ravenwing Bikes (2 Plasmaguns)
1 x Multi Melta Attack Bike

Land Raider Godhammer
Land Raider Godhammer
Predator (Twin Linked Lascannon, 2 x Heavy Bolters)

The Deathwing win the roll off and opt to go first. I don't bother trying to seize the initiative as I like to have the last turn to scramble for objectives (represented by £ coins). He deploys both Terminator squads and Belial who leads one of them around his objective. The Ravenwing squad are put in reserve and everything else is due to arrive on turn 2. I deploy my two Dark Lance Raider squads and they sit contently either side of the board in rocky terrain, granting them a 5+ save. The Squad on my left protects and claims my objective. I also decide to be ballsy and deploy my Archon as far forward as possible, shielded by the large terrain piece in the centre. Everything else is put in reserve.


The Dark Eldar Objective

 The Deathwing Objective

Turn 1 :
The first turn is uneventful as neither side can see through the darkness well enough to hit any targets.

 End of Turn 1: The calm before the storm

The Archon, giddy with excitement, lurks.

Turn 2:
Both Dreadnaughts, the Landraiders and the Predator all trundle noisily onto the board. Between them they make a smoking wreck of both the deployed Raiders.
In my turn, the two Disintegrator Ravagers arrive and move on 12" enabling them to fire one weapon each. The Jetbikes and Wyches also arrive and both move flat out to place them safely behind the center terrain piece, ready to cause havoc next turn. My Archon zips forward towards the Terminator squad holding the objective. The Ravagers provide covering fire with their single shots, killing off three between them. The Dark Lance squads open fire but neither shot finds its mark. The Archon charges, deciding to hold off the drugs, hoping to drag out the fight into the opponents turn. Unfortunately even without the pills he cuts them down with ease. He consolidates into the terrain.

The Darkness is coming...

The Archon finds his first prey...

End of Turn 2

Turn 3:
The Lascannons open fire and destroy a Ravager. Seeing the fate of their bretheren the Terminators embark the Landraider. Two Jetbikes are shot down by Heavy Bolter sponsons and they crash wildly into the ground.
The Dracon and Incubi arrive along with the remaining Ravager and three Splinter Cannon squads. The Dracon flies flat-out, eager to get stuck into the action. The Wych raider zooms forward and the Wyches leap out and fleet 5". They roll a 1 for their combat drugs giving them a nasty 12" assault.
The Jetbikes (who also rolled a 1 for drugs making them Crazed!) open fire with their Blasters and manage to knock off the Lascannon turret from the Predator. Every available Dark Lance on the board takes aim at the Landraiders and only a sponson is knocked off.
The Wyches charge the Dreadnaught and a well placed Haywire grenade leaves it a burnt out wreck. The Archon charges the other Dreadnaught, overdosing on drugs in process but still failing to damage it. 

 Gotta love Haywire Grenades!

The Jetbikes fly, guns blazing.

End of Turn 3

Turn 4:
The Terminators disembark. Two more Jetbikes are shot down in a hail of Bolter fire. Lascannons and Heavy Bolters take fire and a Splinter Cannon squad leaps out of an exploding Raider. A Dark Lance is knocked off another. The Dark Lance Ravager is prevented from moving or shooting. The Dreadnaught and Archon continue to battle with the Archon finally finding the right spot to bring down the hulking machine.
Seeing nothing juicy to hunt, the Dracon moves flat-out again to find a better position. The Jetbikes fly to surround the embarked Landraider preventing the inhabitants from leaving (A sneaky tip I learnt from WOSH.) All Dark Lances open fire on the two Landraiders and finally the embarked vehicle bursts. The Terminators dive out and are confronted with the fearsome sight of the Archon and Wych squad charging towards them.
The swirling melee begins with the Archon cutting down two Terminators. The Wyches strike next only managing to cause a single wound on Belial. In return the Wyches lose two of their number.

 The swirling melee

Turn 5:
All but forgotten the cavalry finally arrive! The Ravenwing bikers zoom onto the battlefield mere inches from the Dark Lance squad holding the Dark Eldar objective. Bolter, Plasma and Melta shots rain down on the squad who dive for cover. Five wounds are caused, and five failed cover saves later and suddenly the battle has been turned on its head!
On the other objective the Archon and Wyches tear down the remaining Terminators leaving only the Landraider to shift from the objective. The predator fires its Heavy Bolter sponsons at the Jetbike squad and several Reavers crash to the ground.
The downed Splinter Cannon squad jumps into the Wyches’ empty Raider and the craft moves over to the objective, ready to claim should the Lances find their aim against the contesting Landraider. Still without a juicy target to slice and dice the Dracon orders his Raider to fly flat-out and position itself to block the LOS of the Predator's sponson.
On the other side of the board a Splinter Cannon squad hurtles flat-out and reaches the Dark Eldar objective. The two remaining Ravagers follow behind.
Every available Dark Lance, Blaster and Haywire Grenade takes aim at the remaining Landraider. The crew are stunned but it remains intact.
If the game were to end now it would be a draw with both objectives contested! We roll and the dice gods are with me. The game goes on!

 Here comes the cavalry!

 A Raider squad is destroyed but there is always another to take its place...

End of Turn 5

Turn 6:
The Predator takes aim at the Jetbikes again but thanks to the cover granted by the Dracon's Raider the two Blasters are saved. The Ravenwing bikes once again unleash their fury, this time onto the Splinter Cannon squads Raider. The craft goes up in flames and the embarked squad dives onto the objective and into the safety of the rocky terrain, being forced to go to ground in the process.
The Disintegrator Ravager takes aim at the Bikers who so nearly thwarted the raid. All three blasts find their mark and the Ravenwing are no more. The Dark Eldar objective is safe and reclaimed!
Once again every available Dark Lance, Blaster and Haywire Grenade takes aim at the remaining Landraider. Crew shaken, crew stunned, and an immobilised result are inflicted but still the armour will not give!

 End of Turn 6

Turn 7:
The Predator manages to take out one of the two remaining Jetbikes. The Landraider uses its power of the machine spirit to fire a token shot, but at bs2 it struggles to find its target.
The Dark Eldar now without the distraction of the Ravenwing bikers are able to turn their full attention to the offending Landraider. Enough Dark Lance shots to blot out the sun are unleashed, entire armies have been killed by less. The dark energy clears and still the DAMNED MACHINE LIVES!!!
The Archon, now furious with this insult blasts forwards, Haywire Grenade in hand and slams the explosive through a bullet hole in the armour. I roll a 6 to hit, a 6 to penetrate, and a 6 to damage and finally the machine explodes!!! I must have sold my soul for those last three rolls, I got the number of the beast, and now the beast has got my number.

It was so worth it...

 The Archon grabs a Haywire Grenade: If you want something doing...

...you've got to do it yourself!

Final Result:

Dark Eldar: 2
Deathwing: 0


  1. That's a sweet Deathwing army. Where did you play this game?

  2. Hi,

    Thanks for this great report with nice pictures, hovewer, Dark Eldar codex 2ed, page 14 states: Haywire grenades can only be used against Dreadnoughts if the Dreadnought is already immobilised.

    Great use of jetbikes though.

  3. This was a great Battle Report, thank you good sir for sharing it.

    "For Commoragh!"

  4. Did your opponent make sure that die was not loaded? lol and those lances/blasters must be from the same production run as mine, as they do just as good(or should i say bad).

  5. Gundog, those lances must've been mass produced because mine almost always hit but never seem to make it though. I run around 25 Lances/blasters in 2k, and I get like 1-2 results a turn, even vs light armor......
    Good bat rep would like to see more like it

  6. That's because of probability. Falcon Grav Tanks can be hit with 32 Las Cannons and have a 35% chance of NOT dying. It's all about tricking the dice Gods.

  7. I don't think your Archon is allowed to take a Punisher whilst on a Reaver Jetbike, as you need to hold on to the bike with one hand. I mean you could always grip the bike with your legs, but I still think the codex says otherwise. =(

  8. @Nosmo: This comes up a lot. Maybe I should do an article about it.

    It was in the original codex however the entire jetbike entry has been replaced with an faq and now no longer states that a two handed weapon cannot be taken on a jetbike.

    As for how it would work in real terms. I guess you just have to use your imagination. But I'd be very suprised if an alien from 38,000 years in the future has a bike which works exactly the same way as my old Yamaha TDR.

  9. Nice Battle report but in all defence you don´t have a lot of terrain Which gives you a huge advantage in terms of mobility and Fire lanes.

    Still it´s a nice battle report. I would love to see this going up against something a little bulier then a Deathwing army.

  10. @ CJ: I disagree, I think more terrain would have worked in my favour. You can't hide behind armour 10, and I need cover to get the most out of my mobility to set up my attacks.

    Dark Eldar can be decently shooty, but being so fragile and with a max range of 36" you certainly can't rely on an open air slugfest.

  11. Sad day to see the Deathwing lose to such evil.

    Great battle report however.

  12. Great report. Dark eldar seem so powerful at the moment.