Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Update #95

"We face greenskin invasion rimward, Eldar raiding coreward, rebellion trailing and the tendrils of a Hive Fleet incoming spinward. Situation excellent, attacking on all fronts…"
- Sergeant Rantle, Imperial Fists.

Valhalla Suffers Setback - T'Vora

Tau Empire vs Astra Militarum.

The great army of the Imperium that had orchestrated such initial assault only weeks earlier had been forced to a standstill as the might of the Tau military were arrayed against them. Using large long range heavy weaponry the Tau targeted the super heavy tanks and knights that the Imperium had deployed, before launching a serious engagement with the remaining Astra Militarum force across many miles of contested territory.

The tanks of the Astra Militarum were the most heavily targeted and soon any armoured support was left as burning chunks of metal. The fire warriors and battle suits then fought the ground troops in brutal combat across the expansive battle field. Although they outnumbered the fire warriors, the Imperial troops were out shot in almost every engagement until the commanders in orbit had no choice but to recall their forces. Operation Valhalla had turned from victory into a hard fought defeat for the Imperium.

Guard the Relic - Thule

Tyranids vs Ultramarines.

The Ultramarines plan to fight the Tyranids in the streets of Thule's main hive city was reasonably successful. The larger bio-organisms could not penetrate deeply into the outer districts and were eventually destroyed by Knights of House Wyvern and the titans of Legio Gladius. This left the Ultramarines able to slow down the advance of the smaller organisms.

As the various space marine chapters fell back against the wave of genestealers and gaunts, a call came in from the Shrine of Saint Quintus, which housed a potent Imperial relic from the glory days of the great crusade. Such a treasure of the Imperium could not be left to destruction as the Tyranids assailed it's walls. Two companies redeployed, fighting through the streets until they reached the shrine. As the space marines opened fire they came under attack by the infamous Swarmlord and several monstrous creatures which had burrowed up from beneath the surface.

While the main Ultramarines force fought to hold the xenos forces at bay, a small group managed to enter the shrine and secure the relic. They took it down into the old undercity and sought a way through to the main command center of Thule. Above, the Ultramarines brought down many of the hive tyrants including the Swarmlord but were then decimated as ammunition ran low.

Elsewhere, in the dark, others looked to the war on Thule and cast a covetous gaze across the planet.

Rivers of Blood and Fire - Volcanis

Tyranids vs World Eaters.

The tyranids continue to probe the sector for new worlds to consume. One weak and starved splinter fleet detects bio-matter on Volcanis, and moves to consume it. Unfortunately for the tyranids they have attacked a bastion of the World Eaters legion. The enraged World Eaters immediately counter-attacked the xenos horrors before they could even escape their spore pods. Weak from decades adrift in space, the Tyranids failed to put up an adequate attack and the World Eaters crushed them. High above in orbit their ships pummeled the bioships and obliterated them all.

Might of the Machines - Arathis Prime

Necrons vs Space Wolves / Craftworld Yme-Loc.

The leadership of the Space Wolves chapter have determined that the greatest threat to Imperial control in the Midas Sector is not the Tyranids or the forces of Chaos but the rapidly growing Necron dynasty. To work towards the destruction of the machines, the Space Wolves have temporarily allied with the Eldar of Craftworld Yme-Loc. A combined assault force deployed on Arathis Prime and immediately came under fire from the outer defences.

While pylons weaved a wave of green energy into the attacking force, the Necrons began to fight a defensive war. The initial assault slammed into the wall of Necron warriors and was repulsed. Even with a sizable drop pod assault the Space Wolves were unable to breach the wall of bodies. Each further assault was pushed back and slowly the line of warriors moved into the conflict zone as more and more warriors were added to the defenders.

Finally, the Necron army just surged forward and caught both the space marines and the eldar off guard. Yme-Loc forces took the brunt of the counter-attack and soon had to retreat leaving the Space Wolves to handle the threat. They too were forced to retreat back to orbit losing valuable gene-seed which would never be recovered.

Horde of the Damned - Midas Prime

Chaos Daemons vs Blood Angels.

The war for the sector capital does not go well. With each day the Imperial forces are pushed back by traitor marines and now by a force of daemons drawn from the Warp. The Blood Angels continue their struggle to hold the line against the enemy but they are greatly outnumbered by their enemies.

The chapter has split its companies to try and and hold the Maxos Line, a fortified wall that split Hive Ajax from Hive Tempesta. When a mighty horde of daemons slammed into the wall the defensive war broke down as the space marines were forced to withdraw against such a mighty force. The Daemons were a vanguard for a larger force of chaos marines which consolidated their own position among the Maxos Line as the battle lines shifted.

Meanwhile Warmaster Xerxes has relocated the Imperial command to Minora IV much to his chagrin.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Alliance Vengeance - Ventara

Craftworld Alaitoc / Dark Eldar vs Orks.

Months after being driven from Ventara by the Orks, the alliance has returned. A combined Alaitoc and Dark Eldar force launched the assault by attacking the Gargant construction yards with a host of titans and wraith constructs. The objective being to destroy the Orks super heavy production ability and then to hold the site until further reinforcements could arrive from the webway.

In total over seven thousand Eldar and three titans attacked under cover of darkness, smashing through the outer defences with ease. The Orks managed to mobilise quickly however and even managed to activate two gargants although they did not last very long. The main battle occupied the open ground between the outer defences and the construction hangers which caused the Orks to suffer heavy casualties when compared to the Alliance forces.

By dawn the battle was won and the Alliance held a strategic objective.

Combat Patrol - Metallo IV

Astra Militarum vs Craftworld Alaitoc / Dark Eldar.

Much of the fighting on Metallo has gone from large scale engagements to small units skirmishing in the ruins of the factorum complexes. The forces of the Astra Militarum are slowly forcing back the Eldar and Dark Eldar alliance. That the war has been reduced to such a skirmish level has become a concern for the Imperial commanders here as they fear that the Eldar alliance may have a some unforeseen scheme in hand to destroy the defenders piecemeal. But for now at least, the Imperium is being successful in pushing back the alien aggressors.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Greenskin Menace Repulsed - D'Then

Tau Empire vs Orks.

A lone Ork killkroozer is detected at the edge of the D'Then system. It successfully blasts it's way through the Tyranid bioships in the area before being intercepted by Tau Navy vessels above the primary planet. Taking heavy fire the vessel plummets through the atmosphere. Once on the surface the surviving Orks pour from the wreck into the waiting cross hairs of the Tau. The Orks failed to gain anything from the attack, which was stopped almost before it started. However, it did alert the Tau command that further Ork ships may be on their way.

Death Among the Tombstones - Callista VI

Astra Militarum vs Orks

Commisar Holt has returned to Callista VI with a new plan to drive the greenskins from the planet. Rather than follow the standard procedure of locate a single landing zone, defend it and spread out, Holt dictated several distinctive zones from which to launch the attack. This tactic proved successful in dividing the ork forces, reducing their numbers and allowing the Astra Militarum to push deep into enemy territory. With reinforcements on route, Holt believes that the Imperium has a strong chance of forcing the greenskin menace off world.

Monday, 20 April 2015

Craftworld Retaliates - Medea

Craftworld Alaitoc vs Tau Empire.

The battle for Medea continues as the Tau fight to hold their staging ground while the Eldar try to force them from their world. The Eldar have thus far been successful in containing the Tau invaders to the landing zones but the battle lines shift throughout the jungles. The Eldar of Alaitoc have the home advantage and knowledge of the terrain which has so far given them the upper hand.

After two weeks of heavy fighting the Eldar defenders finally received reinforcements through the Webway portals and the Tau found themselves outnumbered. The Eldar hunted them through the trees picking the fire warriors off one by one until only a handful survived located in the staging zone. They put up a valiant fight to the last but finally the last fell to blade and shuriken.

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Update #94

"We do not know what our chances of survival are, so we fight as if they were zero. We do not know what we are facing, so we fight as if it was the dark gods themselves. No one will remember us now and we may never be buried beneath Titan, so we will build our own memorial here. The Chapter might lose us and the Imperium might never know we existed, but the Enemy - the Enemy will know. The Enemy will remember. We will hurt it so badly that it will never forget us until the stars burn out and the Emperor vanquishes it at the end of time. When Chaos is dying, its last thought will be of us. That is our memorial - carved into the heart of Chaos. We cannot lose, Grey Knights. We have already won."
- Kaldor Draigo of the Grey Knights.

Desert Strike - Rakdos

Astra Militarum / Inquisition vs Craftworld Biel-Tan.

Inquisitor Raukoff returns to her last battlefield with a sizeable Astra Militarum force. There is no way the Eldar can stop them now. On route the inquisitor's astropathic aides sense a disturbance in the thread of the universe, the Eldar lay in ambush ahead of the convoy.

Thus warned, Raukoff mobilises the Tinus 33rd regiment and tries to turn the tables on the aliens. The pre-emptive strike is successful up to a point. The guardsmen fight well but it becomes apparent that the Farseer leading the Eldar is the greatest threat as he throws great bolts of lighting into the ranks of the Tinus regiment. Raukoff fights her way to the enemy farseer and the two dual in a dance of blades. Raukoff is caught off guard and sent flying down a scree slope. The Farseer mocks her and her foolish quest before the Eldar vanish into the desert haze. Wounded, Raukoff is recovered and returned to the nearest medicae facility.

The Hunt Continues - Rakdos

Deathwatch / Inquisition vs Craftworld Alaitoc.

Raukoff's hunt for the Ethereal leads her to the war torn world of Rakdos. Her psykers insist that while the Tau are not present here something they want is located on this world and it is only a matter of time before her prey will come to Rakdos.

After making planet fall the Inquisitor and her retinue come under attack from an Eldar scout force using the ruins of an older civilization as cover. The Eldar force is mostly guardians with heavy weapon support platforms and war walkers. Several rhino's are destroyed in the opening attack forcing the inquistorial team to retreat further into the desert.  Inquisitor Raukoff believes that the Eldar are guarding something, and that something may well be what will draw the ethereal here. Reinforcements are called for and a counter attack planned.

The Hunt Fails - Pyros II

Space Wolves / Argent Marauders / Inquisition vs Tau Empire.

Only a few Tau forces remain in hiding on Pyros and inquisitor Raukoff believes that her would be assassin is still on the surface. After several weeks of searching the Tau hide out has been found. Calling her allies to her side they assaulted the base only to find that she had grossly underestimated the number of Tau present. What faced the coalition was not some rag tag band of survivours by the beginnings of a whole new invasion. The Tau counter attack was fierce but not enough to dent to the combined might of two space marine companies.

Part way through the fight the skies darkened as a huge Tau aircraft swept based. Small shuttles bearing the ethereals launched from the hidden base and docked with the larger vessel. Raukoff's target was escaping! As the vast craft lifted off and headed into space the Inquisitor called a retreat. No need to waste lives and resources on the task now. The commanders of the Argent Marauders and the Space Wolves considered their tasks complete as both chapters had other assignments elsewhere that needed their attention. The three parties parted company.

The Tau presence on Pyros had at least been revealed but what this would mean now for the forces of the the Imperium and the Farsight Enclave already waging war for the planet was to be seen.

Cries in the Night - Midas Prime

Night Lords vs Blood Angels

On this date units of marines from the Night Lords legion made several covert landings around Ajax Hive. Their attack was met with minimal defence organised by the Blood Angels chapter stationed there. The Blood Angels were outnumbered two to one and in the initial attack the governor of Ajax Hive was hunted down and assassinated by a lone Night Lords marine throwing the PDF defenders of the hive into a panic. The chaos marines then engaged the loyal space marines to prevent them organising the defences.

The response was to call for Blood Angels reinforcements but all available companies had come under simultaneous fire and no help was forthcoming. Mephiston called for a meeting of his commanders and demanded that something be done to halt the enemy advance into Ajax Hive. Abandoning the population was not an option but remaining in the combat zone would lead to heavy casualties among the space marines. In the end a slow withdrawal to allow as many of the citizens as possible to flee into the underground highways to Hives Belhause and Tanhause was arranged. Ajax Hive had fallen to the enemy.

Dire Prophecy - Midas Prime

Black Legion vs Grey Knights

Abaddon's assault on Midas Prime continues unabated. He himself deployed to the front lines and dispatched a force to assault Warmaster Xerxes command center. Xerxes had evacuated to a secondary control center and a force of Grey Knights left in his place.

Battle is quickly joined but soon spills out into the surrounding streets as both sides receive reinforcements. Kaldor Draigo manifests from his exile to the Warp, taking command and leading his brothers into battle. High above the skies were also joined in battle as stormraven's dueled heldrakes and chaos aircraft.

The tide of battle however was to not to remain with the Grey Knights and Draigo called for a withdrawal. Xerxes had escaped to continue the crusade and Draigo had forseen a darkness gathering over Midas Prime but one that would ultimately be extinguished by the Emperor's light. With his words of warning given, the grand master faded back into the Immaterium. The Grey Knights reluctantly issued a retreat but not before destroying all records in the command centers computer system.

Straken's Revenge - Savrip

Astra Militarum vs Craftworld Alaitoc.

After the Catachan II's defeat on Savrip almost a week ago new plans were drawn up to allow them a second chance to retake the former inquisitorial facility located there. The fleet returned to the system and deployed the Catachan II regiment in it's entirety almost one hundred miles north east of the target. Over the next four days they marched through jungles. A few were lost to the monsters that dwelt on this death world but the majority arrived intact.

Rather than perform their usual hit and run tactics Straken launched a direct attack more in keeping with the actions undertaken by space marines. The Eldar were taken by surprise by such a head on assault. The outer guard were wiped out and the fighting headed inside where the battle was more in favour of the vile aliens. Straken had chosen his best men, skilled in hand to hand combat in confined quarters.

The battle quickly turned in Straken's favour and the Eldar interlopers slain to the last. The battle was no over however as the survivours fled into the thick jungles. For now the site was in Imperial hands again but reinforcements were needed to both hold the site and pursue the Eldar into the jungles of Savrip.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

The Walls of Thule

Ultramarines vs Tyranids

The Tyranids have returned to the Ultima Thule system! Defence Fleet Thule moved to engage them on the edge of the system. When the fleet failed to halt the bioship advance they fell back Thule and formed a defensive blockade around the planet. Orders where that nothing gets through no matter the cost. For two days the mighty fleets fought in the skies above the fortress world. Eventually the Tyranids proved superior and a hole was punched through the Imperial Navy line. Spore pods plummeted through the atmosphere and upon impact released a frightening horde of monsters.

 Thankfully for the people of Thule several space marine chapters had pulled back to the world in recent weeks to rearm and resupply before returning to the front. Each chapter moved to defend a different section of the capital and the Ultramarines under Librarian Tigurius volunteered to face the head on assault at the outer defences.

The wave of Tyranid monsters that reached the walls was beyond counting. Wall mounted weapons barely made a dent in their approach. Gaunts swarmed the walls using their dead and one another as a means to clamber the walls. The Ultramarines fired down from the battlements but for every one slain another three took it's place. They fought bravely, holding the walls for several hours before mighty bio-titans became visible on the horizon. Without titan or knight support in the area they could not hold against such power. Tigurius ordered the Ultramarines to retreat further into the city where the bio-titans would have a harder time maneuvering.

Operation Steel Rain - Urbis III

Ultramarines vs Thousand Sons.

Unaware of the Dark Eldar presence in the Urbis system the Ultramarines under Cato Sicarius launch an assault on the remaining Thousand Sons position on the planet. Deploying via drop pod assault to surround the foul traitors. The battle began as determined push through the streets cutting down the Thousand Sons wherever they tried to make a stand.

As the last of the chaos marines fell, Sicarius declared victory. Only then did the skies begin to darken and the sound of gravitic transports begin to fill the air. The war for Urbis was only just beginning.

Saturday, 4 April 2015

Update #93

"An imperfect plan implemented immediately and violently will always succeed better than a perfect plan."
- Ragnar Blackmane, Space Wolves chapter.

War in Hell - Infernus

Necrons vs Chaos Daemons / Dark Eldar

The Necron dynasty have secured their control over Infernus, a former daemon world. The forces of Chaos continue to manifest from the fleshy surface of the world to contest their control. On 020415.M41 the largest daemon force yet seen in the Midas sector arose striking at the unliving machines. The Necrons responding my reviving a vast army of warriors to combat them while the main force activated.

Across the flesh plains of Scythia the two armies met in brutal combat. The unending tide of marching warriors were joined by waves of tomb blades and several monoliths. Despite having an outnumbering force the daemons of chaos were unable to make much of a dent in the necron lines. Every warrior felled simply stood up again or was replaced by arcane technology and the daemons could not replace their numbers so easily or quickly.

The battle then took a mysterious turn as from the sky appeared a Dark Eldar raiding force. Rather than assaulting both combatants on the surface they orchestrated their attacks to assist the daemonic horde. Using their advanced technology they concentrated fire on the monoliths and other vehicles but the machines adapted. The lance weaponry failed to cause enough damage to stop them.

As the battle drew on the daemon horde began to suffer from instability. Hundreds of daemons phased out of real space leaving the Necrons to concentrate fire on the Dark Eldar. With the Necron attention turned upon themselves the Dark Eldar vanished back into the depths of space as mysteriously as they first appeared.

Hive Mind Defeated - Rakdos

Space Wolves vs Tyranids

The final fight to drive the Tyranids from Rakdos fell to the Space Wolves. The remaining Tyranid menace was lured into several valleys where the Iron Priests had constructed several fortifications to decimate the alien horde. As soon as the Tyranid organisms entered the valley's the redoubts opened fire splashing a number of flying monsters and tearing through the lesser organisms.

Once contained within the high walls of the badlands, the Space Wolves deployed via drop pod and teleporters, surrounding and cutting off the xeno's only way of escape. Grey Hunter squads engaged the lower organisms while terminators fought their way to the larger monsters. The might of the Space Wolves was such that although they lost many brave warriors, they obliterated what remained of the Tyranid horde.

Despite the victory there was no time for rest as the Eldar threat remained. Worse still was the realization that this world was still in the path of the hive fleet and the Tyranids would be returning. The Space Wolves have left a grand company behind in preparation for their return.

Return of the Tau - Medea

Tau Empire vs Craftworld Alaitoc.

Following their failed expeditionary attack on Medea the Tau high command order a much more sizable attack force to capture the planet. As soon as the ships entered orbit the army deployed to a designated landing site several miles from the ill-fated expeditionary force made planet fall.

With the Tau holding a thin line on the surface, the focus of the first day was for their forces to push in to the jungle and divide the Eldar defenders into two sections. One detachment was directed to secure a secondary landing site for reinforcements.

The effort to take engage the Eldar initially met with heavy resistance. Aircraft were called in to strafe the jungle forcing the Eldar back. Inching their way forward, kroot spotters were able to direct aerial gunfire directly upon the Eldar guardians and camouflaged redoubts. With the major obstacles reduced, the fire warriors were able to take the positions in about an hour of combat with relatively few losses.

Other operations were considerably more difficult. During the night the Eldar had set up several new defences for heavy weapons, and fire from those cut off the Tau forces from each other for some time. By noon the Tau had brought up their own battle suits, and the Eldar were quickly put out of action. By the end of the second day, the entire area around the landing sites were in Tau control.

Operation Valhalla - T'Vora

Astra Militarum vs Tau Empire

As the Imperial invasion flotilla entered low orbit to in the predawn hours, the Tau defence guns opened fire. A gunnery duel soon developed as the main batteries on the Dominator class cruisers Lord of War and Sanctity of Faith commenced counter-battery fire. The counter-battery proved accurate, with several of the lance cannons finding their marks. One shot penetrated the power generator for one of the defence cannons, igniting a huge explosion as the emplacement went up in a massive fireball. The remaining cannons were knocked out in short order. Though all fell silent, one continued intermittent, though inaccurate, fire through the second day. The damage to the big guns left the approach to the surface open. It was one of the few successes of the naval bombardment.

Following the gunnery duel and an air attack on the Tau at 0610, the naval bombardment of the planet began in earnest and was sustained for the next three hours. Six Tempest class frigates cleared the sky of Tau defence ships. The landing craft then entered low orbit where they awaited the end of the bombardment. The plan was to land guardsmen in the north badlands.

At 0900, the supporting naval bombardment was lifted to allow the guardsmen to land. With a pause in the naval bombardment, those Tau that survived the attack were again able to man their firing pits. Tau fire warriors from the southern lines were shifted up to the northern defences. As the guardsmen made their way over the badlands and in to the plains, the number of Tau troops in the firing pits slowly began to increase, and the amount of combined arms fire the Imperial troops faced gradually intensified. The advancing chimera transports had a myriad of holes punched through their non-armored hulls, and many were knocked out of the battle. Those that did make it in proved unable to clear the defense wall, leaving the men in the first assault waves pinned down against the wall.

Colonel Matthias Gromell was the senior officer of the landed forces, and he assumed command of all landed troops upon his arrival to the surface. Although wounded by an exploding shell soon after landing, Colonel Gromell took charge of the situation, cleared the area of Tau snipers and rallied the first wave of guardsmen who had become pinned down behind the limited protection of the wall. During the next two days, working without rest and under constant withering enemy fire, he directed attacks against strongly defended Tau positions, pushing forward despite daunting defensive obstructions and heavy fire. Throughout, Colonel Gromell was repeatedly exposed to Tau small arms and artillery fire, inspiring the forces under his command. For his actions he was awarded the Honourifica Imperialis.

Early attempts to land tanks for close support and to get past the defence walls failed when the landing craft carrying them were brought down by Tau fighter aircraft. Two Leman Russ tank squadrons were landed on the east end of the battle field but were knocked out of action fairly quickly. Two super heavy tanks were successfully deployed at midday. They helped push the line in and caused significant casualties to the Tau defenders. One became stuck in a tank trap and another was knocked out by a Barracuda. The remaining tank took a shell hit to its barrel and had its primary gun disabled. It was used as a portable machine gun pillbox for the rest of the day. A third platoon was able to land all four of its baneblade super heavy tanks around noon and operated them successfully for much of the day, but by day's end only one tank was still in action.

By noon the guardsmen had successfully taken the battle field as far as the first line of Tau defenses. By 15:30 the line had moved in places but was still generally along the first line of defenses. The arrival of the stormlord super heavy tanks started the line moving on the east flank, and by nightfall the wall had broken allowing the Guardsmen access to the Tau military command center.

As night fell on the first day, the Tau defenders kept up sporadic harassing fire, but did not launch a full attack on the invading guardsmen. With Commander Starfire killed and their communication lines torn up, each Tau unit was essentially acting in isolation, and indeed had been since the commencement of the naval bombardment. The long night dragged on, but lacking central direction, the Tau were unable to coordinate for a counterattack against the Imperial troops. The feared counterattack never came and the Guardsmen quickly mopped up any remaining defence.

Jungle Warfare - Savrip

Astra Militarum vs Craftworld Alaitoc.

The Inquisition has requested assistance from Warmaster Xerxes in recovering their facility in the Savrip system. Grudgingly Xerxes has agreed and dispatched a force of Catachan Jungle Fighters under the leadership of Colonel Straken.

The Catachan troops landed and spent the better part of a week fighting a guerrilla war. Eldar patrols never returned from the jungle depths. Others fell to hidden traps and landmines. A few died to sniper shots. Finally Straken determined that the Eldar force occupying the Inquisitorial facility had been weakened enough that it was unlikely they could resist a direct assault.

Unfortunately the assault failed due to the sudden arrival from a hidden webway of a much larger ground force of Alaitoc guardians. The Catachan's fought valiantly but they were not prepared for a large scale ground war without air support. Straken called for immediate evacuation for the surviving guardsmen. His report to command indicated that a much larger assault force would be needed if Savrip was to be recovered.

Tau Expansion Repelled - Medea

Craftworld Alaitoc vs Tau Empire.

The next phase of the Tau expansion into the sector saw the empire cast its eyes upon a verdant world on the edge of space. It had been two years since they last tested the mettle of the Eldar defenders and with the expansion not going to plan, the planet's resources were desperately required. A scout force was dispatched to see whether the Eldar garrison was still capable of resisting the Greater Good.

The Tau fleet entered orbit and was able to deploy ground forces without encountering any Eldar vessels. However, once the last of the landing ships reached the surface the Eldar burst from the undergrowth and assaulted the surprised Tau force. The Eldar surrounded the few hundred fire warriors with fast moving attack craft preventing them from escaping the killing fields. The remainder of the Alaitoc forces, mainly rangers, using precision sniping to remove any command officers and special weapon teams. With no where to go and no reinforcements coming, the Tau forces were obliterated.