In the meantime my dedicated girlfriend has treated me to a Valentine's game of second edition 40k.... Truly there can be no greater expression of love!
I kept the game deliberately small for two reasons, firstly I was going to use a new army that I haven't fielded in second edition before (Iron Warriors from Codex Chaos) so I wanted to learn their nuances gradually...and secondly because I didn't want the game to take too long.
As per usual we drew the cards for our missions, my girlfriend drew 'Engage and Destroy' meaning she would need to kill a vast number of enemy units to gain victory points, whilst I drew 'Take and Hold' which required me to seize and defend an objective in the middle of the battlefield.
|Ubiquitous Second Edition Mission Cards at a degree of randomness and purpose to each game.|
My girlfriend took command of a small detachment of noble Crimson Fists with an eclectic mix of troop types:
|Imperial Forces: Crimson Fists Space Marines (NB an additional 5 man combat squad was added to this force)|
Whilst my force consisted of the grim forces of The Iron Warriors, let by a Chaos Lord and an Icon Bearer with the blasted standard of Tzeentch... Both of whom were clad in tactical dreadnought armour.
|Chaos Forces: Iron Warriors Traitor Space Marines|
It seemed fitting that given the hatred between the two bloodlines that the sons of Rogal Dorn and Perturabo would be fighting this bloody battle against each other... On a battlefield almost torn directly from a nineties white dwarf!
|Imperial Assault Marines cower before the blizzard of Chaos weapons fire|
The Crimson Fists knew they had to take the fight to the enemy if they were to secure victory and so the assault marines fired their jump packs and bounded across the table in order to engage the silver warriors of the dark gods. However the scions of Chaos laughed maniacally as they opened fire with their cursed bolters and plasma weapons, slaying the imperial heroes like cattle.
|Chaos Terminators, supported by their Lord and Icon Bearer stride forward to seize the objective|
The Chaos Terminators then stomped forward, the ground shuddering underfoot as these gigantic visions of death incarnate surrounded the objective marker and braced themselves to weather the storm of Imperial firepower that was sure to come their way...
|Power-armoured Chaos Marines wisely seek cover as the Imperial Force charges en masse towards their deployment area|
Meanwhile the more lightly armoured Chaos marines established themselves in solid fire support positions nearby, making use of cover to deflect the Imperial bullets.
|The forces of the Emperor prepare to extract revenge against Perturabo's descendants|
Despite the early loss of their assault brethren the scions of Rynn's World remained as a stoic as their Primogenitor, advancing towards the Chaos Astartes whilst pumping a steady stream of death from their weapons as the distance closed. Many of the Dark Gods lackeys were felled as the loyal marines aim proved true, though these brave warriors also took casualties in return.
|In the fires of redemption shall the heretic burn and gain a measure of absolution|
Soon the distance was short enough that the first company veteran's were able to make use of their Heavy Flamer, dousing the enemy in righteous fire. As ever this shock weapon proved brutally effective and the screams of burning heretics filled the air (this was my girlfriend's favourite part of the game...she loves heavy flamers!)
|The Chaos Terminators charge forward to stall the Imperial advance whilst the rest of their brothers hold the objective|
The Chaos Terminators realised that a defensive plan was no longer viable as the blue armoured Astartes had seized the initiative and were now dominating the battlefield. With this in mind they revved their chain blades, cocked their combi-bolters and charged into the Crimson Fists with a cry of 'Death to the False Emperor' on their lips!
|The tawdry progeny of Rogal Dorn are no match for these veterans of the Long War|
Here these ancient, bitter warriors proved their worth, gutting the Emperor's finest as though they were mere children. The grass of the battlefield was soon red, stained the rich crimson of post-human blood.
|Always room for one more pyromaniac in the Emperor's armies!|
In retaliation the Imperial Terminators played a last gambit with another spurt of fiery death, incinerating a number of Chaos Warriors...whilst their sole remaining storm bolter jammed!
And with that the game was over, all that was left was to tally the Victory Points. The Crimson Fists had slaughtered many squads of traitors as per their orders. However despite this the Chaos worshipping marines still held the central objective gaining them five victory points. With this in mind the final score was:
Crimson Fists: 6 VP
Iron Warriors: 10 VP
And so the forces of the Dark Gods were victorious, pulling humanity's final fate a little closer towards oblivion!
Overall this was a really fun game, however it did reveal a key issue... In games without tanks Terminators can become unstoppable avatars of death. In fact the only thing that can really stop a Terminator is ...well another Terminator!! In future I will need to consider this imbalance when running smaller games!
Many thanks must be passed to my girlfriend for playing with me (again!) Discussions are already underway reference a full second edition campaign utilising a Rogue Trader style narrative and I am in the process of putting this together! I'll let you know how it goes!