Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Battle at the Club - Necron vs. Bishop's Eldar

Last night brought home that a whole game can hinge on just one roll. Now I know what you're thinking "Dude, if you had killed one more unit", "If you had just been more aggressive/passive", "If, if, if, if" and that's just what that is "Ifs"... Sometimes the dice, they just don't roll your way. Read on to see where you would have done things differently and I hope you'll agree the "ifs" were just plain "eh, no different than any other choice."

So, what was this game that hinged on a single roll? Bishop's Eldars versus my Necrons. I pulled a new trick out of the hat this time around taking less warriors and scarabs for a stalker. It was a good choice since it looks really nifty on the table, but I'll have to give it a few more games to see just how I want to use it, as well as which weapon load out.

The only non-blurry shot of the night.
So we setup and roll out, Annihilation and Spearhead deployment. The 'crons got first deployment, corner chosen I deployed leaving a unit hidden and since there was tall terrain hid big units behind appropriate cover, Eldar after all are shooty buggers. Bishop deployed his corner well back from my firepower, but not so much as to be "stuck" without being able to fire himself. Bishop attempts to seize initiative but fails. Illuminor boosts the unit of Immortals to a toughness 5, which is a great boon against a lot of fire power.

Top of first turn kicks off with a big poof... Bishop has successfully deployed his units so far back that I'm unable to get range, maddeningly by an inch or two in many cases, I see what you did there sir, and I commend it. Six inches is a big deal for Necrons. I don't have Phaerons so warriors are now down to a 12" shot, the Stalker has only one weapon he can't move and shoot, the Monolith is 24", c'tan at 18" etc. Effectively it's a mid range army and not getting in range is something every necron player needs to contend with. Since Bishop plays the new Necron codex he knows this, and exploits it. The only thing that does have range are the eldrich lances so they shoot but great rolls hold the Eldar safe. He who fires first in this game typically sets the tone for the battle, and unfortunately this was not one of my best turns, however all was not lost, the scarabs are in range and attempt to assault, but a roll of a three is the best I get.

Pew Pew!
Bottom of first turn has Bishop consuming those one to two inches and making the difference for his army, however there's a lot of short range power in his list. His ordance and lance weapons however are also present making it a nice balance. He starts pulling out big templates, and starts rolling serious heat, 5s, 6s all around. As luck would have it, the dice are infectious and I start saving quite a lot... Vehicles that get hit glance at best, keeping my AV 13 in tact, and with rolls of 1 on the glance are ignored. Shooting takes three immortals down, and two warriors, but a rez orb and lucky rolls on the immortals get everyone but one immortal back on their feet. Some really high rolling on both sides of the table and we're getting amped, nothing but heat for both our rolls now.

Top of second, and I'm in range, especially of his wraith guard, who I want nothing to do with. I'd really like them off the table and how. Bishop has a torso here and there just in line of sight and the picking off begins, but again the rolls are strong for us both, and very little happens other than minor losses on his end of the table. The goal to take out some of the wraith guard works, with a lot of thanks due to the monolith's particle whip, the warlock is down as is one wraith guard. Assaults have one unit of scarabs destroyed, and the first kill point is awarded to Bishop. Immediately the next unit of scarabs are placed into assault tying his unit up again.

See those big things on the top? They suck.
Bottom of second and the rolls are still hot, and there no lack of shooting. Bishop unloads on the Annihilation Barge, but doesn't do much more than glance and again it's ignored. More of the teslamortals get chipped away thanks to his ordinance blasts, and the spyders are beginning to feel a lot of wrath. Bishop isn't keen on keeping them around, so unloads all hell on them. Still they persevere, yet are hurt. Assaults continue, and now the unit I'm up against (wyches) are down to three models... Almost there.

Top of third I keep at the wraith guard and get them down, one kill point on the board. Now the warp spiders... I don't like how smoothly they're moving around the board so I want them down, and succeed in chipping some of them away. More shooting happens at his clusters of troops, but nothing happens. Assaults have me down to one last wych from my spyders. However we're both noticing that our dice luck from before is being spent...

Hi, I'm about to get blowed up.
Bottom of third and Bishop's transport comes on the board... right behind my stalker. What does Bishop have in there? Fire Dragons... No good will come from this. Indeed the Fire Dragons with their melta weapons make short work of the Stalker. Two points on the board. Assaults clear out one more base of scarabs, but the unit still lives on, and the warp spiders now join hand to hand with Zahn, a cryptek and warriors. Big unit though at 12 models versus his four, I should be ok.

Since we're out of time we decide to speed up the final fourth round, speed shooting and speed assaulting.
I pepper shot everything I can, but to no avail, most things are gone or in assault that would be in range, so what to do? Assault results. I roll and finish off his wyches, awesome, tie game.

Now it's Bishop's turn, shots on the monolith ping off, and shots at the teslamortals go through, but again they get back up. Persistent little buggers... And now the assaults. Those two last warp spyders are still locked in hand to hand with the warriors, zahn and the cryptek, three warriors drop requiring a leadership check of a nine... Wouldn't you know I roll a ten... Bishop's roll to chase me down? Successful.

Me rolling a ten. Note Bishop giggling, he needs a tan.

What would you have done differently? How would you have closed the gap in shooting distance in the first turn? Would you have taken one unit over another?

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