My gaming group has usually scheduled an Warhammer 40k Apocalypse game each year. Its been a while since the last time, and with this ever-growing collection of Orks of mine I didn’t even know if Apocalypse games would be more than a nuisance. Last weekend we did a tasting, read the Battle Report and see how it went!
Planning is maybe the most important part of an Apocalypse game, especially when people tend to have rather different views and expectation of such an event. My gaming group of 6 core players already has widely different opinions on what it should be like. More and more often we also fall back to the question: “Is it worth all the fuzz”?
Being an Ork player its also a bit of a chore with those Apocalypse games. You (should?) have a great horde of green mean machines trying to get a proppa fight, but before that they have to take flakk from both the enemy guns and the enemy players if you don’t get them across the board fast enough. Setting up the game and actually making sure they fit onto the board well enough to possibly reach the enemy during the game (that often might be called early due to time constraints) is another thing. But the only way to find out is to try it out! Chaos Beakie challenged me to a big game a while back, and after rescheduling another game with that Tall Git he too was absorbed into the planning. The goal for me was simple: Move as many orks around for a full game and find out what kind of foot print they have.
☠ The Scenario (and planning) ☠
So we had to entertain three players at the same time. I wanted to field as many Orks as possible, the Tall Guy had his Vostroyans (even above 2000 point now) that he preferrably play with all painted (slightly less then). Chaos Beakie again tend to conform to almost whatever situation is placed before him (Oldest Brother?). Them against me then? That’s too neat. Them against, mostly me, but also against each other. Sounds a lot better. We discussed points for a bit and decided 1850 points each for them would be suitable, so I would throw together a 3700 point list. After a head count, this meant that I could field 340 or so orks if going for boyz before toys. The Stompa had to stay home, as it has proven to bit quite too much to chew for us.
To reduce time it would be good to get the action going as soon as possible. I also didn’t know how much space I would need. A solution was then to first deploy orks in the middle, defending a conquered city with hidden sekretz. My opponents would then get the first turns, and move in freely from their table edge – I had the benefit of deploying pretty much where I wanted (still some 12″-15″ away from the edges felt most reasonable) and they could decide from which point to attack.
We placed four (4) 2 VP secondary objectives in the corners of the table (15″ from table edges), with the main objective being the building in the middle (or the ruins thereof).
To compensate for the large game board (6′ x 6′) and the lost inches from the deployment zones we would roll for Random Game Length starting Turn 6.
☠ Why? ☠
The Vostroyan company DCCCXL-XLII is currently assisting the latest explorator fleet that has entered into the sector. This isn’t the first, or the last, explorator fleet in search for the alleged STC pattern of a groundbreaking design for more reliable plasma guns. The difference between this and earlier explorator fleets is the Vostroyan company in question.
The Vostroyan DCCCXL-XLII is lead by the honourable commander Graf Kaltos, which has lead the company to several decisive victories against the large xenos presence. His success can be accredited to a close cooperation with the Magos Explorator Haxtes and his explorator fleet. The strong presence of enginseers, mechanicus overseers and other mechanicus officials in the company has increased the reliability of the already well maintained mechanised squadrons and the equipment of the regular troops.
The latest target in the campaign, in search of lost technology, is the planet [record purged]. The planet is however inhabited by a large splinter fleet of orkboss [record purged] waaagh into the sector. In order to search the planet a secure landing zone needs to be established.
☠ ☠ ☠ ☠ ☠
Praise the dark Gods the Magnakia has been located! The great Meph’idycnnlanatragznth has untangled the shadowy webs of the twisted fates and glimpse the presence of its great
potential. The Magnakia now resides as a spark among the hordes of greenskins mustering
at the sundered crossroads of Berengien Twilights. It is finally within our iron taloned
grasp as is the untold glory that it brings. Let none stand in our way!
☠ ☠ ☠ ☠ ☠
To the game!
↓ The >340 orks ready to battle! It was very nice to see them all placed up like this. I didn’t even realise my collection was so far painted (though I knew it by numbers). Several of the boyz units have been ebayed and painted the last year and a half.
↓ During my deployment I tried to divide my force equally, t0 make sure we get a proppa fight. Against the Tall Guy I sent the Dreads, Kans and the grotz Backed with a unit or two of boyz while I tried to ward of Chaos Beakie’s Chaos Beakie attack with my fast elements, Trukkboyz, Stormboyz, bikers and some foot sloggaz. A mob of ‘Ard boyz with ‘Urghnould, Lootas, Looted Wagons and two mobs of Boyz was left to direct their efforts as needed. I would not, however, know from where the Gitz would come!
↓ The Vostroyans strike! Spearheaded by two Hellhounds the gunline emerges. Luckily a front row of
meatshields Grots can take #allthatlas.
↓ Lasma and Plasguns are looking to “Bring it down!” covered by a barrage of mortar shells.
↓ This is a gunline. A “Front Rank, fire! Second Rank, fire!” later the grotz are running as fast as they can for cover.
↓ To the left a landing area has been cleared, and not a moment later the Chaos forces strike. A unit of Spawn with a Chaos Lord (in the ruins) spearhead the charge, whilst several squadrons of Chaos Marines jump out of their Rhinos to secure their deployment area. The force is flanked by two Helbrutes, and a Helturkey is roasting in reserves. After the opening fusillade a unit of boyz is all but lost, and the Stormboyz are falling back (orange unit, lower right).
↓ The orks counter assault. The grotzookas deal out pain like a Mad Dok. A preaching voice awakes fervor in the hearts of the guardsmen and they hold. The fleeing grot survivors are clogging the way for their bullies.
↓ The game changer? The orks surviving the unleashed Vostroyan hellstorm won’t be roasted to death like their compadres! An impressive 11″ charge (and no mean feat of their Boss Nob Hakk Ajurngob) later there is only scrap metal. The ork poets (think vogons) will recite the prettifulest words of this legend that was soon to be ended (see the Australians in beige).
↓ The Nid Killas take cover in the crater knowing they cannot harm the incoming Helmob.
↓ The Sotrmboyz rally, but there is still only chaos on this flank.
↓ A Rhino load of Berserkers is aiming for the centre of the board screaming like madmen in their lust for murder. Their journey stops momentarily with a stunned crew. The Spawn have charged into a mob of orks. But somehow the orks manage to take out two of their number.
↓ The guardsmen are cleaning up the table as they move forward. Only an relic from the Eighties is running amok towards the lines, under wailing plasma. The grotz somehow find a portion of insane bravery that even their runtherders didn’t know they had in them. It seems like the Vostroyans only have a ‘Urghnoulds boyz between them and the main objective.
↓ ‘Urghnould decides he needs to take this issue into his own fists. One Helbrute is down, but another is threatening to ruin the day.
↓ The boyz from the Alpha Legion charge in to help out their Sorcerer Lord. The spilt blood is calling the berserekers as well. Also, an Obliterator is running amok showing the Helbrutes how to fight for real.
↓ The australians are moving out, securing a secondary objective on their way. The Relic Deff Dread is meanwhile tearing up the command squads chimera transport. Will it have the company of a trukkload of Snakebites too?
↓ The priest’s sermons weren’t only heard by the guardsmen, but it seems by the orks as well! Another insane bravery not only by the two grotz, but by the Browncoats as well. Nothing’s gonna stop us now!
↓ The snakebite boar boyz are trying to pepper the rear end of the Helbrute to smithereens, but it will have none of it! The Tyranid killas are deciding maybe its time to get there as well, no?
↓ The Vostroyans send out a flanking charge of their horsemen and first cut down a squad of Iron Brethren. Soon they are about to run down a squad of fleeing Goffs, but instead urge them on to return to the fight. The berserkers are crazed by the amount of skulls available in different sizes and make short work of the remnant orks after they cut down the rough riders.
↓ A final cleance later the Vostroyans have no more friggin orks trying to run into their lines. But have they been pinned down too long?
↓ Swooping down to save the day, the Heldrake skorches a swathe of boyz as the Helbrute is cutting down a mob of boyz. The boar boyz try to use the anti-air targeters available by the secondary objective (lower right), and unleash a fury of solid shells into the flier. It is barely glanced as it gracefully evades the fusillade.
↓ Soon after the boar boyz charge into the Helbrute, the Boss nob trying to tear it apart with his power claw. ‘Urghnould’s boyz try to scrap up some rhinos.
↓ So close, yet so far away. The Sentinels take down two of the Killa Kans, but the troops are falling back under the ordnance fire of the Pink Tanker, will they reach the main objective before the time is out?
↓ The Helbrute hover down to eradicate the Lootas supporting fire from the Ork Effigy. In return ‘Urghnould is determined to take it down, barely reaching it. Tearing massive pieces of metal from its hull is not enough, if the pieces are not the right ones. He should have listened more carefully to the Big Meks in Ork school!
↓ The Helbrute is a resilient bastard. Slinking away from punch after pinch by the nob. The Nid killaz fall back.
↓ This is as close as the Guardsmen got before the game was over. Close, but it’s ‘Urghnoulds cigar this time.
It was quite an interesting game this one. Victory was not too far away for neither opponent, I think. Had the orks not succeeded in taking out the Hellhounds in turn one that flank would most definitely had been lost and the guards would have been 14″ closer to the centre. With the Chaos Space Marines Chaos Spawn attack we forgot about the strenght modifier from one of the Psychic Powers the Sorcerer Lord had cast. This would have prevented the Boyz from wounding the spawns, potentially turning that fight as well. I also realize I got a rule wrong did a multiple charge in the end and took out both a rhino and the remaining berserkers, but would you know you can’t get the Furious Assault bonus with and Disordered Charge…
Moving all those boyz certainly is possible, and even the Tall Guy who is a bit allergic to things dragging out seemed to have found this enjoyable. One thing that helped was that barrier of Orks separating the two forces, so that even though they were fighting against each other as well as against the Orks they could do much of their turns simultaneously. The Tall Guy also seemed to have enjoyed the lack of super heavies or gargantuan creatures, which can be a real bane to armies built first and foremost with minis in mind, like his. Chaos Beakie, in turn, still has a place for the multiplayer Apocalypse sized chaos. I will know more what I think in a few weeks I think. But it sure was fun to have all those painted models on the table, and I’m not talking about only my orks.
Thank you for reading! Don’t hesitate to comment – what is your view on Apocalypse sized games? Especially now that the lines between ‘ordinary’ games and apocalypse games has been blurred.