Thursday, 28 November 2013

Sector Update #46

"I find it far more annoying when the universe makes you work for your damnation. I'd prefer it just gave it to me, save me the effort." - Inquisitor Mannus.

Tyranids Advance - Bantis V

Tyranids vs Warriors of Ynnead.

Following on from the failed attempt to halt the Tyranid advance, the exhausted Eldar warriors found themselves backup by a new faction in the war, a group of wanders calling themselves the Warriors of Ynnead. Despite their arrival, the Eldar were forced to endure wave after wave of bio-organisms and monstrous creatures. Such attacks were now a common occurence across the planet. The Eldar commander on Bantis grew so concerned that he deemed this world to be already lost.

During these engagements to halt the Tyranid advance around a third of the Eldar forces present were killed and consumed. The Eldar could ill-afford such losses as the Imperium was pressing them throughout the sector, let alone waste them against the Great Devourer. Many casualties and recovered soulstones were quickly returned through the webway gates to the Craftworlds, while the newly arrived Warriors of Ynnead fought to cover the Eldar retreat.

With so much ground lost to the Tyranids, the Eldar must weigh carefully the value of this world and whether it is worth so much death and tragedy.

And Blood Shall Fall Upon The Snow - Fangol

Blood Angels vs Craftworld Alaitoc

Operation Firebolt continues with the arrival of the Blood Angels to assist the beleaguered Imperial forces on Fangol. The Blood Angels task was to overtake several Eldar fortifications that controlled areas vital for Imperial control. The task was handed to legendary librarian Mephiston to oversee and implement.

As the Blood Angels battle barge Blade of Vengeance entered low orbit ready to deploy the space marines via drop pod assault she was detected by an Eldar patrol vessel. Although the xenos craft was destroyed it did manage to warn the ground troops. By the time the Blood Angels were in position the enemy was on high alert and ready to repel any assault upon landing.

The first troops to land were from the 3rd, 4th and 7th companies. They deployed under orbital fire from three formidable Imperial cruisers Emperor's Glory, Glory of Terra and the Lord Mecharius. Each dispatched numerous support and landing craft to assist the attack.

The assault started when the target locations were under cover of night. For reasons unknown the first wave of drop pods landed two miles from the target, in an area designated for Imperial Guard deployment. This landing site was swiftly attacked by the Eldar but just as quickly put down by the battle brothers. The remaining assault pods and support craft reached their intended destinations without hitch, though some drop pods found themselves buried in heavy snow drifts.

The first marines to arrive were met by sporadic small arms and scatter laser fire but casualties were fairly light. The 7th company who landed closer to the target than expected, suffered the worst. The main enemy was confusion as drop pods came to rest  somewhat off from their intended point of impact forcing the squads to regroup before launching the main offensive.

At dawn word reached the commander of the Alaitoc forces about the attack. He believed it to be a feint and that the Imperium would never attack so worthless a target. He believed that they would only focus their true efforts on recapturing territory lost weeks before. It took three hours before he was convinced that this was not the case and so, making a decision that probably doomed his forces, led a counter attack moving his headquarters to the very stronghold that the Blood Angels sought to take. Upon arrival he issued a now infamous command: "I do not order you to attack, I order you to die! In the time which passes until we die, other troops and commanders can take our place!"

Two days later the Blood Angels were reinforced with further brothers from the 5th company. Freshly equipped and ready for the battle, the newly arrived space marines launched a new strike into the heart of the Eldar fortress. Mephiston led the charge, slaughtering aspect warriors by the hundreds as he sought to end the xenos commander. In furious battle they duelled but it was by a stroke of Mephiston's mighty blade that the battle was won.

The Blood Angels across all four companies lost almost a hundred men. The Eldar, by comparison, had lost over a thousand. For now the Imperium had retaken vital locations from which to counter attack the enemy. Perhaps the gaze of the Emperor had fallen upon the Midas Crusade at last!

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Hunt The Fated - Illiad

Imperial Navy vs The Fated

The Fated have launched raided on several Navy convoys and installations withing the Midas Sector, striking hard and fast, but slipping away before responses can be mustered against them. The 'Reavers Hunt', the warbands flagship has been identified to be amongst them from pict-captures retrieved in post-action recovery operations.

Concerned by the aggressiveness of such actions, Imperial High Command tasked a Navy battlegroup to hunt them down. Hunting the traitors through dense asteroid fields and gas clouds, the group soon found what they believed to be a stronghold of the Fated, hidden deep within the Oran Belt. They approached the facility at battle-readiness, expecting to meet the traitors in open battle as they came forth to defend their holdings.

However, the hunters soon became the hunted as traitor ships swarmed them from the rear. They'd cloaked their energy signatures amongst the background radiation of the gas belt, allowing the Navy vessels to walk right into the jaws of their trap.

Two cruisers, the 'Grey Lorenzo' and 'Iron Rain' were boarded by traitor Space Marines before the fleet could even turn to meet the threat. The bridge of the 'Iron Rain' was overrun and fires set all along the length of the 'Grey Lorenzo', leaving it to burn in the void. Past them stalked the ships of the Fated, closing in on the rest of the battlegroup like wolves on a scent. Torpedo's streaked back at them, but they were intercepted by fighters launched from the 'bastard of Vorros' long before they could threaten the traitors ships.

Seeing the hopelessness of his situation, the Imperial fleet tried to disengage, hoping to win through to the warp. They were hounded every step of the way by the traitors escort vessels. The 'Admiral Kharkorov' was torn apart by torpedo fire after a lance hit to its main engine array forced it to a crawl.
By the time the fleet managed to reach the warp, little more than half their number remained alive. Many ancient vessels had been lost, their crews numbering in the billions. Such losses would have been catastrophic under any circumstances. However, the most disturbing thing about the encounter had been the message broadcast to the imperial fleet in the final moments before it had translated to the warp.

"Tell your superiors this is but a taste of things to come. We are the Fated and we have returned"

Friday, 22 November 2013

Sector Update #45

"Every day, here and across the Imperium, we are warned about the enemy. But who is the enemy? Is it the alien? Well, we are all alien to one another. Is it the one who believes differently than we do? No. The enemy is fear. The enemy is ignorance. The enemy is the one who tells you that you must hate that which is different. Because, in the end, that hate will turn on you. And that same hate will destroy you." - Unknown heretic.

Amarok Strikes Triton System - Triton prime

Hive Fleet Archelon vs Necrons

From the depths of space they came, dozens of bioships, all headed for the water world of Triton Prime. The necron ships in orbit managed to slay two of them but it was not enough to prevent the landing of numerous bio-organisms to the planet below. The few island chains quickly swelled with tyranid creatures battling the necron defenders.

The necron forces with their barges and skiffs had far greater mobility and they used this to their advantage. The tyranids had not adapted quickly enough to the water world and many were pushed into the sea to drown. Necron fighter craft strafed the hordes, causing untold casualties.

In orbit, the necron vessels finished off the last of the bioships, efficiently cutting them creatures below off from the greater hive mind. With nothing to control them, the tyranid organisms either went dormant or entered a berserk rampage, easy enough for the necron warriors to mop up.

Thursday, 21 November 2013

The Enclave Expands - Hermes IV

Farsight Enclave vs Sons of Tantalus

The attack was launched in the morning with an orbital bombardment followed by a swift surface deployment. The plan was to capture a vital target, occupy and then move on to the next target. One step at a time and the planet would belong to the Farsight Enclave.

A detachment of Sons of Tantalus 3rd company were currently planetside being re-equipped before heading back to the front. Poor communications from the Imperial commanders meant that by the time the Sons of Tantalus could mobilize, the Enclave had already captured their primary target.

The Enclaves initial advances were extremely successful but the arrival of the space marines brought an immediate halt to their attacks. The Tau were able to break through the lines eventually which allowed them to outflank the space marines across the battlefield. The further they tried to push the more difficult things became.

The Sons of Tantalus had brought the Enclave invasion to a standstill but they had failed to drive the Tau from Hermes. The deadlock would remain for some time as Imperial reinforcements were needed elsewhere more desperately.

Tau Repulse Imperium - D'Then

Tau Empire vs Sons of Tantalus

The commanders of the Tau were well aware that the Imperium were preparing a new assault on D'Then. The Tau had suffered under recent attacks and it was vital that they prevent the loss of another world. The Imperium had suffered particular difficulty in sweeping the last remnants of the Tau Empire away due to gunfire from heavy fortifications and well-placed grav tanks batteries. The Imperial commanders called for space marine support, and the Sons of Tantalus responded.

Their first assault was deployed by drop pods while the mainstay of the 4th company deployed bu thunderhawk transports. The Tau were decimated in that first assault but the curse that has been following the chapter was to continue to haunt them. The Sons of Tantalus had been lured into a trap. Now that the space marines stood in a blasted wasteland, the main force of the Tau appeared from hidden positions on high ground and opened fire upon them. The Sons attempted to charge forward and engage the firewarriors but the open ground proved to be their downfall.

The 4th company was decimated and had to fall back. The Tau surged forward, pushing the space marines and the Imperial forces back into their own lines. The Empire had achieved its aims, and prevented the planet's loss for the time being.

Chapter Games - Rakdos

Dark Angels vs Dark Angels

The Dark Angels have been very quiet of late in the wars that span the Midas sector and at last it was been discovered where the chapter has been keeping itself. After the chapter's recent losses to the Eldar on Fangol, they have retreated to the desert planet of Rakdos to conduct training exercises. The chapter has decided that only through rigerous practice can they regain their edge and take the fight back to the enemies of the Emperor.

Friday, 15 November 2013

Sector Update #44

"I can't sacrifice everything for the sake of one planet!" - Warmaster Xerxes

The Green Tide - Ventara

Orks vs Farsight Enclave

From the depths of space a vast war fleet of ork ships entered the Ventara system. Attempts by the Enclave's fleet was unable to stop their approach and many lives were lost. The huge ork vessels entered orbit and launched huge numbers of assault craft to the surface.

The orks planned to land in the heart of the Enclave cities, capture as many fortifications and artillery weapons for use against the Tau. Bad weather dispersed the landing craft across the main continent but the orks managed to secure six landing sites within hours of arrival. The ork assault was so strong that the Tau suffered massive casualties and had to retreat.

Within a few hours Commander Farsight himself had arrived to lead his people against the greenskin horde. With his support the orks were held at bay during the night. In the morning, with support from Firewarrior reinforcements which arrived overnight, the Tau attempted to push the orks back into the landing zones where they could be contained. Unfortunately the battle plan was overly complex and poorly implemented by the battlefield commanders. The orks halted the attack knowing full well that the feeble Tau could not stop them in savage hand to hand combat.

As night fell over Ventara the Enclave forces were locked in mortal combat for the fate of the planet.

The Dark Ones Return - Metallo V

Dark Eldar vs Salamanders

The foul fleshwarped dark eldar have returned to Metallo. The piratical eldar swooped down from the dark night skies striking at the anti-air defences before more poured out of webway portals. Many workers and magos were taken in those first few minutes. The Mechanicus priests managed to send a brief distress call before the alien raiders cut off all communications. The distress call was picked up by a passing Salamanders force who diverted to their aid.

Many kabal leaders were concerned about the approach of the space marine vessel and some were hesitant to face the Emperor's finest. However, their fear of Asdrubael Vect was enough to convince them to remain. A number of fast moving aircraft and skimmers were hidden north of the Mechanicus facility in preparation for the space marine assault.

On this date the Salamanders launched their assault in the middle of savage lightning storm. The initial engagements were easily defeated and the space marines were able to retake several key locations across the planet. But their favour was not to last. The concealed Dark Eldar aircraft and waves of skimmers drove the Salamanders back into their landing zones. All the hard fought victories for nothing.

The Salamanders fought a long hard battle but they could not recover the captured territory nor find a way to hold back the waves of kabalite warriors. They retreated back to their battle barge in orbit. Telepathic communications with Midas Prime requested help but it may be a long time in coming.

Thursday, 14 November 2013

Saim-Hann Lead The Attack - Acastus Prime

Craftworld Saim-Hann vs World Eaters

With Kharn leading his warriors elsewhere in the Midas Sector, it fell to his warband commanders to halt the Eldar advance on Acastus. Enraged by the failings of other traitor legions to halt the alien attacks, they took to the battlefield in large numbers. The force dispatched was over a thousand strong with additional vehicle and cultist support. Many of those cultists were former Imperial guardsmen captured in the early days of the crusade and pressed into slavery.

The eldar were expecting this coming attack. The Farseer's of the craftworld had foreseen it weeks earlier. The World Eaters launched their attack under cover of night. Unfortunately, they were spotted beneath the light of both moons and the eldar brought their weapons to bear. Weapon platforms devastated the chaos marines as they charged across a mile of open wasteland. Three squadrons of land raiders managed to breach that artillery fire and unloaded their contents into the surrounding barricades. Within seconds they had been cut down and the land raiders wrecked. The eldar were more than ready for them.

At dawn as the sun rose behind the eldar defences, they opened fire on the lines of World Eaters with larger artillery. Many more traitor marines fell under that bombardment. Only the constant hatred in their hearts kept the World Eaters in the battle. More would have been lost had not the cultists been forced to dig trenches during the night, which protected them. As the artillery assault faded the World Eaters launched another attack. Their assault was checked by the eldar and it faltered once again.

This time the eldar commanders ordered a counter-attack. Swoops of jetbikes raced out across the desert. Many were shot down but more survived to strafe the trenchworks, cutting down the cultists with ease. Despite the successful raid few jetbikes made it back to their lines as concentrated small arms fire brought them down as they sped away. But the raid did what it needed to.

The enraged World Eaters surged forward to pursue the jetbikes. The marines ran forward and right into the range of the eldar weaponry. As more of their numbers fell, they continued going unphased and it cost them dear. Few survived to breach the xenos lines and those who did were cut down by aspect warriors. Eventually the attacking forces were brought down to a few hundred, and the eldar surged forward and slammed into the survivours.

The World Eaters were quickly slain, and in the wake of their defeat, the Eldar forces were able to expand their territory. Acastus Prime would soon return to Eldar control.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Penance Games - Hermes IV

Ultramarines vs Sons of Tantalus

As penance for their constant losses in the Midas Crusade, the Sons of Tantalus are sent to Hermes IV to train under their founding chapter, the Ultramarines. Under Marneus Calgar they retaught the codex astartes and accepted tactics, before playing out a series of war games.

Among the ruins of an abandoned mine complex the two chapters fought it out, but each time the Ultramarines overran and defeated the Sons of Tantalus. Some among the Ultramarines feel that the Sons have fallen out of favour and are not worthy of service to the Imperium. Marneus silences all such talk. He commands that the Sons of Tantalus will conduct fleet security and only engage threats that he feels they are capable of defeating. The Sons 4th company return to their battle barge in shame.

The Tau Reclaim the Initiative - Acastus Prime

Tau Empire vs Black Legion

Since the initial successful invasion of Acastus Prime events have not got well for the Tau Empire. Reduced down to a mere 250,000 troops, the Tau retreated under heavy fire by the forces of Chaos, whose numbers were almost twice as many. The commander of the Black Legion forces was under orders to reclaim the mines captured some months earlier. Once this was completed with ease, he turned his sights on destroying the Tau utterly.

The Tau commander, Wintersun, was in a tough situation. He desperately needed to find a location that was defensible so that his weary troops could rest and possibly call for back up so a counter offensive could be organised. Establishing communications with the orbiting vessels engaged against the enemy many miles above, he called for assistance as soon as it was safe to do so.

When the Tau encampment was found, the Black Legion commander ordered a large chunk of his forces to march in from the north and annihilate the enemy. He would lead the smaller force which would skirt around unseen and attack from the south, crushing the Tau in a vise between the two waves of attack. Wintersun underestimated the enemy. He believed that they would simply harass the Tau and keep them on the move, wearing them down slowly.

When Wintersun realised what was happening, he quickly ordered his men to prepare for a counter-assault. Supported by a detachment of kroot mercenaries, the southern flank inflicted heavy casualties on the smaller enemy force, pushing them back. Continued attempts to break that side failed.

Two days later and the Tau were pushing back the main body of traitor marines in the north and capturing territory. Despite their superior numbers the Black Legion were taking horrific casualties as the tide of war turned against them. That evening the sky was alight as resupply and reinforcement air craft landed to deliver much needed support.

On the sixth day of battle, the Tau consolidated their forces into a tighter formation, closing holes in their defences and tightening the supply lines. Continued enemy assaults were beaten back time and time again. The Black Legion finally launched a total assault in the early hours with men, tanks and monstrous creatures hurtling into the Tau lines, but again the Tau held their positions. In places the attack was successful but the chaos marines found themselves without support and surrounded by enemy marksmen.

By the time that the Black Legion forces retreated back into the waste lands, the Tau had lost an estimated 76,000 troops but the traitor marines had lost almost twice that, and had abandoned a significant amount of vehicles and supplies. The weary soldiers were taken topside, and the invading forces placed under the command of newly arrived commander Novastar.

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Sector Update #43

"Matters more urgent caused our absence. Now, witness the result. Outposts destroyed, expansion of the Imperium everywhere. Yes, we have indeed been negligent, Captain, but no more." - Tau Commander Firestar

Amarok Returns - Bantis V

Tyranids vs Craftworld Alaitoc

For many months now the craftworld eldar have waged a defensive war against their dark brethren on Bantis V. With the enemy contained, the majority of the eldar were away from here fighting the Imperium on other worlds. Because of this they were unaware of the approach of Hive Fleet Amarok until the shadow in the warp enveloped the system.

Swarms of tyranid organisms swept down from the sky, devouring all before them. The initial defence was led by the warriors of Craftworld Alaitoc who sought to halt the monsters as they began to grow their capillary towers and acid pools. Initially things went well but when larger organisms entered the fight, the tide of battle turned. The battle was composed of close quarters combat among the towers and former ruins, the Eldar using their fighting skills and mobility to stay one step a head of the monsters.

It was all to no avail, and the Eldar retreated under harassment from winged monsters. The Eldar who escaped tried calling on their allies elsewhere in the sector but the shadow in the warp blocked all attempts. Perhaps the only way forward was to ally with their dark kin once again?

Exterminate the Xenos! - T'Lau

Tau Empire vs Ultramarines

The final battle for the world of T'Lau was fought between the Tau survivors and the Ultramarines chapter of space marines. It was the final thrust that the Imperium needed to force the Tau Empire from the planet. Then it would just be the small Tyranid presence that they would have to destroy. The Tau commander Firestar sought to enter negotiations so that his survivors could evacuate, but the Ultramarines orders were exact.

The Ultramarines attacked under cover of drop pod and aerial assault. The attack went well with many aliens slain in the first few minutes. As the Tau attempted to flee a few brave soldiers remained to harass the advancing space marines, forcing them to deal with the defenders before hunting down the rest of their people. The firewarriors and battlesuit warriors were broken against bolter and sword. The rest of the Tau were surrounded and fought a desperate last stand.

The Tau presence on this mining world was dispatched. Now all that remained was to handle the Tyranid threat in the southern polar regions.

Friday, 1 November 2013

Sector Update #42

"Why do people always ask if someone is ready right before they are going to do something massively unwise?" - Sergeant Kolicos, Sons of Tantalus 4th company.

A Change in Leadership

Imperial salvage teams have discovered a pod drifting in the Savrip system. Inside was the body of a single Space Marine in full armour. Through in-depth gene-analysis, medicae personnel have determined the marine to have been of a great age. Further investigation by the Inquisition confirmed this and after scrupulous tests and bio-scans the Marine has been confirmed to possess the gene-markers distinctive the Sons of Horus legion. What's more, the marine bore many grievous wounds, most of which were only half-healed. From this it has been theorized that the subject must have died from these wounds over a long period of time, despite the efforts his post-human metabolism to heal the damage.

A study of the armour in which the Marine was found has revealed him to be of a command rank, judging by the engravings on the pauldrons and the distinctive helmet crest adorning the Mk III helmet. The rest off the armour had been scoured clean of colour and insignia, presumably before launching the pod into the void.

These facts, cross-referenced with field reports from across the Midas sector has led the Inquistion to believe that the corpse is none other than that of Commander Morkaddon of The Fated, who by all reports was wounded on the field of battle many months ago and had not been seen since. Up until this point it had been assumed by imperial authorities that the commander still lived, albeit in a weakened state, preferring to act through his subordinates until his wounds had healed.

The fact that his mortal remains had been discarded as such, rather than be treated with due care and reverence suggests that a new commander has risen to lead the Fated - one that wanted to remove all trace of his predecessor. Imperial high command now waits with trepidation for this new leader to reveal themselves and where their first blow will land. If this new warlord is even half the leader Morkaddon was known to be, The Fated are far from finished as a threat to the Midas Sector.

Renegades Assault Xenos Homeworld - Medea

Craftworld Alaitoc vs Soul Drinkers

The Soul Drinkers have launched a raid on on a jungle outpost held by the forces of Aliatoc. Deploying by gunship and drop prod, the renegade chapter closed with the Rangers and Guardians holding the outpost quickly, before they could slip away into the shadows.

Commander Sarpedon led the charge on the command building at the centre of the outpost, flushing out the Dark Reapers hiding within before they could rain death on the Space Marines below, slaying the Farseer who was commanding them in single combat. In the jungle itself, Howling Banshees clashed with mutated Assault Marines, the trees ringing with their maddening howls as they were overrun.

Things did not go entirely their way though. Eldar reinforcements responded quickly to the raid and squadrons of Vypers, Wave Serpents and Jetfighters scrambled to the scene. Seeing his tiny force being surrounded, Sarpedon and his men retreated their shuttles as Striking Scorpions and more Banshees emerged from the jungle. Sergeant Tellos met them head on with his cadre of blood crazed killers, buying time for the rest of the force to reach the ships, dragging their wounded with them.
Once again, the exact nature of the Soul Drinkers object was unknown, but it would seem that they succeeded obtaining more vital data from the outposts archives, judging from communications intercepted by Imperial High Command. The fact that this is the second such raid in as many weeks has led analysts to conclude that there is something hidden in the Midas sector which the Soul Drinkers are seeking desperately.

This fact alone is enough for Imperial forces to try and prevent the renegade chapter from achieving their goals, although many amongst the Imperial High Command have pointed out that the attacks thus far have all been against Xenos targets and that it may be prudent to allow the renegades to bleed the enemies of the Imperium. To such men, the Warmaster has pointed out that the Soul Drinkers could strike anywhere at any time and the traitors next target could very well be Imperial positions, especially considering the many violent clashes with Imperial authorities that punctuate the chapters history since their excommunication, most notably the attack on the Jenassis Navigator House on Kytellion Prime and the 'Phalanx Incident', both of which caused untold hurt and damage to the Imperium. The Warmaster knew that the Soul Drinkers were just as much a threat as any the Imperium faced in the Midas Sector and they would need to be stopped if the forces of the Emperor were going to triumph in this crusade