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Battle 7: 50PL vs Imperial Knights, Tech Hunt


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27 August, 2022

With the Cruentes' supply lines well and truly solidified (Warfleet Glory has been at 7 for several games now), Kratus has set about raising as many edifices to the glory of the Bloodfather as possible. However, in this small satellite city of Hive Secundus, a cultist coven has alerted the Cruentes of a hidden cache of Mechanicus artefacts. Eager to add these to his arsenal, Kratus leads a force to recover them - and pile some skulls in the process. Fortunately for his warriors' Butcher's Nails, a worthy foe looms on the horizon as four Imperial Knights close in on the same target.

Kratus leads Baruda the Dark Apostle, Murdax and his 9 Red Butchers, Validon and his 7 Berzerkers, Gorm and his 4 Berzerkers, Bardûl the Spawn, and a small mob of Cultists.

The Cruentes' Agenda is to perform a Blasphemous Ritual (perform an Action in the centre of the table for XP and Dark God Glory points) and to destroy some Priority Targets (kill vehicles).

The Cruentes push forward as the Attackers in this scenario (personal rule - if I win the roll-off, I always choose Attacker) and manage to get first turn. The mission is Tech Hunt from the Plague Purge mission book, where there are four objective markers near the centre line of the board with a number hidden underneath them (the players know what two of the numbers are, but are not allowed to check after they're placed). Players must perform an Action to uncover an objective's number. The player performing the Action gets 10VPs, but if it's an odd number, the objective is removed from the table. The two remaining objectives, if uncovered, are worth 10-15VPs per turn.

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With the enemy in their sights, the Berzerkers of the Cruentes surge forward in Apoplectic Frenzy.

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I forgot to take photos after my first movement phase, so just imagine everything another 5-6" further forward. Turns out that Apoplectic Frenzy is a very useful tool for reaching objectives early to perform Actions, as I uncover two of the objectives in my first turn - one on the right flank (behind that rocky outcrop) and one on my left flenk (behind that big building). The Red Butchers also begin their Blasphemous Ritual action in the centre of the table.

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My opponent's first turn opens up to him killing my small Berzerker squad on my right flank through shooting and assault.

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Elsewhere, combined shooting kills a two Berzerkers and a Terminator. The Big Knight turns the Cultists into red slurry.

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Finishing their Action in the centre and gaining some XP and a Dark God Glory point, the Red Butchers and Kratus surge forward once more to take on the enemy warlord.

Baruda, the Dark Apostle, steps up to begin the next Blasphemous Ritual.

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On the left, Validon's Berzerkers have a choice between charging a shooty or choppy Armiger. I don't particularly want to have my opponent interrupt combat, so I decide to charge the shooty Armiger. The Berzerkers swarm it and, later in the Fight phase, rip it to shreds.

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The Red Butchers start chewing up armour plates and hydraulics with their chainfists and power fists, knocking out most of the Knight's wounds. In hindsight, I definitely should've used the stratagem that gives Terminators +1 to hit!

My opponent declines to interrupt combat, since he only has two CPs left. Kratus then steps up with his chainfist, mag-locked boots giving him access to the knight's carapace and carving off the last of the Knight's wounds.

The enemy machine had some relic that caused Mortal Wounds on saves of 6+, so both the Terminators and Kratus take a couple of wounds.

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As Kratus breaches the machine's cockpit, however, his triumphal roar is interrupted by a deafening explosion. My opponent spends his last CPs to force the Knight to explode, killing a couple more Terminators, knocking some wounds off the nearby Armiger, and pinning Kratus under the bulk of its collapsed machinery.

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The Knights have lost around two thirds of their force in one turn, so things are getting dire. In desperation, one of the Armigers charges Baruda in the centre while he was still building his pile o' skulls, as the other Armiger loops around my rear to attack Bardûl, who was being held back in case of emergency.

To the surprise of no one, the Spawn is instantly gutted by the small Knight's chainblade.

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In the centre, I opt to interrupt combat and use two additional strats: Fury of Khorne to cause auto-wounds on 6s to hit, and Stoke the Nails for the added Strength and exploding 6s. It's a long shot, but I still hope for the best. Unfortunately for Baruda, however, he fails to land any damage on the Armiger - that's 4CPs well spent...

In return, the Armiger cuts apart Baruda's last Disciple (the other was killed by the big Knight's explosion) and lands a hit on the Apostle himself, opening a huge gash in his amour but he is still left standing. Those Disciples also having a 4+ invulnerable save is extremely useful here!

Unfortunately, the distraction (and Baruda's poor showing) means that Khorne isn't interested in his offering, and his Action fails - I need to roll a 7+ on 2D6, but only get a 5.

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Unfortunately, I forgot to take photos of the final turns. Validon's Berzerkers and the Terminators all charge the Armiger harassing the Blood Priest, easily cutting it to pieces.

In return, the last Armiger in my back lines sweeps around the big ruin to attack Validon's squad in the rear, leaving only a couple of Berzerkers alive. It is the final gambit by my opponent, but the result was never really in doubt with seven Red Butchers still on the field. As the Armiger is dismantled by the frenzied Terminators, Baruda attempts another Blasphemous Ritual, but is again shunned by the Bloodfather.

Result: 70-0 Win

Unlocking the archeotech vaults, Baruda has discovered an ancient and potent warp-fuelled power source for his Crozius (improves AP by 1). Only the Cultists suffer a Battle Scar, becoming Battle-weary (no actions, 1XP cap per battle), everyone else recovers without problems.

The Cruentes gain 4 Chaos Points for winning the game, and one bonus Dark God Glory for a successful Blasphemous Ritual on turn 1. I use these to keep the Personal and Warfleet glory the same, while bumping up the Dark God Gory to a Favoured level.

Kratus's Personal Glory: 4 -> 4
Khorne's Dark God Glory: 5 -> 7
Cruentes' Warfleet Glory: 7 -> 7

I use the Warfleet Favour to up my Supply Limit again, but can't do anything with the Dark God Favour just yet.

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