Hey all, Shorereaper here, and I am going to give you my perspective on the the game I had against Severus this past weekend.
As you can see from the previous post, my list was very Monstrous Creature heavy, and very much deployed on the front line. I knew I had to get most of my units into close combat, and I new they would take a lot of firepower trying to cross the battlefield. For my psychic powers, I managed to get Catalyst (feel no pain) on the Swarmlord, as well as the Horror and Psychic Scream. The Hive Tyrant got Psychic Scream and Onslaught. Of course, all four psykers got Dominion, meaning I would have two to four synapse creatures at any given time. Getting ready for the game, I felt that my best chance was to go first and get in the Tau’s face as quickly as possible. Luckily for me, I managed to seize the initiative.
Turn 1 –
This was a relatively short turn for me. Everything my army moved forward, and moved forward fast. I was going to play this game aggressively and I decided to ignore the Stealth Suits coming up on my rear flank. The Hive Crone and the FHT took to the air and immediately got into firing range.
In the shooting phase, the template from the crone took out a few fire warriors in one unit. The Hierodule, with its 12-inch move, was able to barely get into range and managed to cause a wound on the Broadsides. Of course, I ran the Hierodule after that, thanks to its agility special rule. The FHT shot at the unit of Fire Warriors with the Etheral, and killed him. Everything else just ran forward, or in the Swarmlord’s case, lumbered forward at a slow walk. The Exocrine also fired its large blast weapon, picking off a few drones.
Then came the pain. Severus unloaded into the Hierodule and a few of the other monsters that were trying to close the distance. The Stealth Suits and Vespids picked off a few Genestealers on the one flank. The Hierodule took three wounds, and the flying HT was brought down to just one wound. I forgot how much firepower the Tau could bring to bear in that first turn.
As I am sure Severus will say in his blog, he decided to charge his Vespids into my Genestealers. I figured this was going to go well for me. And while it did, it didn’t go as well as I hoped. While my Genestealers did kill the majority of the Vespid, and they managed to kill one Genestealer, they stayed locked in combat thanks to an amazing roll of snake eyes.
Turn 2 –
My turn two movement was exactly the same as my turn one. March forward and pressure the enemy. The FHT flew behind the Hammerhead while the Crone swept to the right. The Dule and the Dimachaeron moved in close to the left flank (again, from my perspective). The Exocrine stayed put this time, meaning I would be able to use the slightly better Ballistic Skill.
In the psychic phase, like most of the game, I managed to get off catalyst, giving the Swarmlord unit and one other unit feel no pain. I also used some dice to give most of my creatures a better synapse range (including the Broodlords).
In the shooting phase, the Crone weakened another fire warrior unit, the FHT took down the Hammerhead, and the Exocrine took out some drones (and may have cause a wound to the broadside unit). Again, all of the other units ran to close the gap on the Tau.
In this assault phase, I thought I would start to significantly crush the Tau. The Raveners charged the 4 Tetras hoping to reduce the number of markerlights that could be brought against me. The Hierodule charged the R’varna. Well, the Hierodule tried to charge R’varna. I failed to successfully make the five-inch charge that was needed. The Raveners took down two tetras, and the Genestealers finally killed off the Vespids, which opened them up to shooting in Severus’s turn.
Again, my units had to deal with more shooting. This time Severus brought the Hive Crone down to one wound, shot more Genestealers, and only caused one wound to the Hierodule. Severus did manage to kill off the Venomethrope and one Hive Guard with the Y’vahna, and then fled far enough away that I would not be able to charge it in my turn.
Turn 3 –
As with all of my movement phases, the Tyranids kept charging forward, except for the Exocrine. I shifted the Hierodule for a slightly better shooting and charging position, and the left flank Genestealers closed in on one unit another unit of Firewarriors. The Crone and the FHT, both with one wound each, flew off the board to safety. The Raveners continued to pursue the Tetras.
In my shooting phase, the Exocrine fired at the Y’vahra, and cause one wound. The Hierodule toasted all but one Fire Warrior in one unit and caused some wounds to the Broadside unit. Most units, of course, ran forwad.
This is where the heavy assaulting started. The Raveners charged the Tetras again, the Genestealers and the Dimachaeron charged the larger unit of Firewarriors, and the Hierodule charged the one Firewarrior he didn’t kill (talk about overkill). The Raveners didn’t kill anything. The Genestealers and the Dimachaeron (on the left flank) managed to kill their firewarriors, and of course, the Hierodule killed off the one Firewarrior.
After my turn, Severus managed to kill the Exocrine and even more Genestealers. He also knocked the Hierodule down to one wound. I will say this now, that Hierodule can take a lot of firepower.
Turn 4 –
By turn four, the Tau were beginning to be cornered. I moved the Swarmlord into position to charge the Y’vahra. The Crone and the FHT moved into position to also shoot the Y’vahra. The Hierodule and the Dimachaeron moved into position to charge the R’varna. I was also finally frustrated with those Stealth Suits and moved the Broodlord into position to charge them. Sadly, that Broodlord was the only model left in that unit.
In the assault phase (nothing happened in my shooting phase), the Swarmlord managed to kill the Y’vahra. The Dimachaeron and the Hierodule killed the R’varna, and the Broodlord took out the unit of Stealthsuits. However, the Raveners tried to assault the Riptide, and were finally killed off.
And then it finally happened. After three full turns of being shot at, the Hierodule could no longer stand up to Tau firepower. The last wound was finally knocked off. I am left feeling that my first game with the Hierodule was successful, even if he didn’t make it to the end of the game. The FHT also was finally taken off the board.
Turn 5 –
With almost no available shooting left from my army, I just tried to shoot two tentaclids at a unit of firewarriors, killing off one. This being my final turn (unknown to me at that time), I charged the Dimachaeron into the broadsides and the other Broodlord into the remaining tetras. I did successfully kill one tetra (losing a Genestealer in the resulting explosion) and finally finished off the Broadsides.
In what turned out to be Severus’s final turn, he killed off the Dimachaeron with a lot of firepower. I still had the Swarmlord (and two of his guard), two Broodlords (but no Genestealers), and the Hive Crone.
So, throughout the game, I left my right flank soft and exposed, but thanks to a lucky scatter from Severus, the flank never collapsed. The left flank hit hard and fast, which seemed to work in my favor for this game.
So, the Tyranids managed to pull out a victory under the stated conditions. I had some MCs left on the table. And even when we broke it down by the modified victory points, my Tyranids managed to take home the victory. Although I believe I had an advantage with the Hierodule, it was still a very close game.