Friday, 26 December 2014

Update #80

"They're humans. Indulging their favorite pastime of trying to destroy each other." 
- Forgefather Grime, Demiurg miner.

An Offer Refused - Infernus

Blood Gorgons vs Traitor Guard

Abaddon the Despoiler has sent out a call for any war bands in nearby regions of space to come to his aid. If his losses in the sector are to be recovered then he will need more marines to serve him. The first to come were a detachment of marines from the Blood Gorgons war band. When they refused his offer to join them, he cast them out and dispatched his minions to grind them to dust.

The Blood Gorgons fought a running engagement through the flesh wastes and bile streams to reach their craft against a tide of traitor guardsmen. Small arms fire and close quarters combat were the tools of the day. Even the hordes of fallen soldiers were no match for the traitor marines, merely slowly them down. The Blood Gorgons fled the daemon world into the void.

Reclaiming the Capital - Midas Prime

Blood Drinkers vs Necrons

For the better part of a year the Imperial forces have fought nonstop to contain the Necron invasion of Midas Prime. When regular forces failed to do the job Warmaster Xerxes requested aid from forces outside the sector. Three companies of Blood Drinkers responded.

They began by launching an aerial assault on Hive Alpha Twelve. The attack forced the Necrons to recall many of their warriors from the outlaying districts to defend the command monolith. Once the Necron warriors had contained themselves within the hive city the Blood Drinkers launched their attack. The outer defences fell to the space marines within a matter of days, leaving the central Hive vulnerable.

Necron tomb ships destroyed the battle barge Sanguis Deus before they in turn were destroyed by Battle Fleet Midas. Then, with the aid of the orbiting battle fleet launching bombardments down onto the hive, the Blood Drinkers advanced through the ruins to destroy the Necron defenders. The war to reclaim Midas Prime has begun.

Blood and Shadow - Minora IV

Blood Angels vs Dark Eldar.

The Dark Eldar descend upon Minora seeking easy prey in the aftermath of recent conflict. A company of Blood Angels launched a counter-attack. The space marines sought an early and easy victory by targeting the leader of the raid straight from the start. Initially the Blood Angels were thrown back and the Dark Eldar used the lull in the storm to perform a number of slave raids.

The following day the Blood Angels returned to enact their vengeance. This time they returned with air superiority and caused significant damage to the invading ground forces. The Blood Angels then swooped in for the kill, wading through the blood of the enemy. The raiding force was destroyed or driven off.

Update #79

"Apparently, a wing of Dark Eldar is scouting out this sector for likely worlds to invade. For 'likely' read 'soft and vulnerable.' Our task is to make sure they either don't leave here, or they leave convinced that we are neither soft nor vulnerable and way too much trouble to invade. We win this battle, they go away, we save ourselves a great deal of trouble in the future. We lose, this'll get a hell of a lot worse."
- Captain Sicarius, Ultramarines

Expansion Continues - Pyros

Farsight Enclave vs Imperial Guard

Near the end of the year, to secure their gains recently acquired, the Enclave launched two simultaneous attacks on the routing Imperial forces. Two legions of Firewarriors marched towards their lines while a wave of fast skimmers and gravitic tanks used hidden mountain passes to get a head of the Imperial lines and then lock them in place. Although outnumbered the Imperial Guard held fast for two days before the last man fell.

Elsewhere, Farsight himself led an attack on Hive City Pyros itself. After four days of heavy fighting the Enclave breached the walls and entered the city streets. The first army arrived shortly after to back them up. The Imperium lost many thousands of guardsmen an civilians before the city surrendered to the Enclave.

The Darkness Destroyed - T'Lau

Ultramarines / Gray Knights vs Dark Eldar.

From the darkness of space a large Dark Eldar raiding force descended upon T'Lau on the hunt for slaves and easy prey. Fortunately the population of T'Lau the Ultramarine force that had until recently been conducting war games in the area were still present and swiftly answered the call to battle. A call for help was dispatched telepathically and answered by Inquisitor Butlerian's Gray Knights.

The Dark Eldar marched on the planetary capitol but were halted 80 miles from their target by an entrenched space marine force. The strong opposition combined with poor weather forced the Dark Eldar to fight on the enemy's terms.

The Ultramarines fought a holding action and awaited reinforcements. The next day the Gray Knights arrived and the two armies rose from their fortifications and advanced into the heart of the Dark Eldar. They met on the banks of the Xiushi River. The speed of the Dark Eldar made it hard to pin them down and for four days the two great formations fought toe to toe. To end the stand off the Dark Eldar called in a wave of Ravager's to decimate the space marine tanks and heavy weapons.

Assault squads from the Ultramarines mobilized and managed to destroy several of these in rapid succession, allowing the surviving Land Raiders and devastator teams to bring down the rest. The Gray Knights took their righteous wrath into the heart of the sybarite warriors who were no match for the Emperor's finest! Just as quickly as they had arrived, the Dark Eldar fled back into the depths of space.

Amarok Defeated - Volistad

Orks vs Hive Fleet Amarok.

|For most of the year the orks of Volistad have fought to hold back the horror of the Tyranid invasion and they have been largely successful but have failed to drive them from their world... until now. At the end it was simply a war of attrition. Both sides had lost uncountable numbers of troops but both armies were more than capable of growing more. Finally the greenskins were able to outnumber even the Tyranids and after nearly ten months of constant fighting the last Tyranid organism and bioship have been slain. Volistad belongs to the Ork!

Chaos in Retreat - Illiad

Blood Angels vs Chaos Daemons

On this date the Blood Angels landed fresh ground troops to Illiad to assist in mopping up the remaining Chaos forces. In desperation the Word Bearers summoned a vast army of daemons and threw everything they had at the loyalist lines.

The forces of Chaos tried to resist the oncoming counter-attack but even the daemonic army could not repel an attack of such magnitude. The Blood Angels continued their advance through the wave of infernal horrors taking surprisingly few casualties as they did so. On numerous fronts the space marines pushed the daemons back into the Warp until only a single Chaos stronghold remained, the infamous Soulforge. However, although victory against the daemons had been relatively easy, the battle to take the Soulforge would be a hard fought engagement.

The Minora Massacre - Minora IV

Black Templars vs Craftworld Ulthwe.

The Minora Massacre started with an Eldar invasion to mirror the wars on Metallo IV and deny the Imperium the ability to manufacture new weapons and armour. But the attacking force from Ulthwe had not foreseen the arrival and deployment of the Black Templars space marine chapter who had come seeking the whereabouts of ork warlord Ghazghkull Thraka.

Overconfidence on the part of Ulthwe led them to ignore the smaller and seemingly less important targets around the main command city of Minora. From these locations Neophytes cut communication and supply lines, laid mines and sniped obvious Eldar commanders from cover. It did not take long to confuse and divert the Ulthwe troops away from the command city.

On the following day a detachment of Warp Spiders attempted to teleport into the main command site only to be gunned down by Black Templar marines awaiting just such a move. Over the next week the command city was the site of almost constant battle and many were killed by small arms fire. Finally the Eldar attacked en mass failing to consider how strong the Black Templar positions were. The space marines managed to encircle the surviving Ulthwe ground forces and eliminated them with extreme prejudice.

Eldar Incursion Unstoppable - Metallo IV

Craftworld Biel-Tan vs Ultramarines

The battle for Factorum complex 2366 was a major engagement in the Imperial-Eldar conflict for control of the vital forge world. The day after the Eldar ambushed a Vostroyan convoy in the Shotan Pass, the same Eldar emerged to capture one of the most strategic objectives on the planet. Factoum complex 2366 was the producer of most weapons and vehicles for the Imperium in the whole sector.

Although defended by a company of Ultramarines the complex fell in less than twelve hours. The Ultramarines were forced onto the defensive and retreated to regroup with the Imperial lines at Factorum complex 2300. The Imperium also dispatched troops to defend two neighbouring Factorum complexes believed to be likely targets but this caused a lack of personnel at the sites then attacked by the Eldar.

Biel-Tan forces broke through the enemy lines forcing the defenders to retreat once more. The Eldar were now in control of the most important supply points for the entire crusade.

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Update #78

"I have seen what power does, and I have seen what power costs. 
The one is never equal to the other." 
- Inquisitor Butlerian

Battle for the Shotan Pass - Metallo IV

Craftworld Biel-Tan vs Vostroyan Firstborn

The Shotan Pass was a narrow defile worn through a long mountain chain with no exists other than either entrance. The Eldar of craftworld Biel-Tan were able to lay an ambush which destroyed two columns of Vostroyan troops, tanks and supply units.

The 221st Vostroyan received a call for assistance from Factorum 1771 across the mountains from their base of operation. The distress call said that the factorum was under attack by Eldar ground troops and that they had few supplies or skitarii with which to launch a counter offensive. Quickly the 221st mobilised a large force of guardsmen and the few tanks they could spare and set off down the Shotan Pass. At the same time, Biel-Tan guardians were placing themselves in the high rocks at the half way point of the journey, with a force of falcon grav tanks waiting at the far end for the call to enter the fray.

The Eldar were successful in their ambush at only the loss of seven hundred guardians compared to two thousand Vostroyan guardsmen slain. The result of this simple ambush was that now the Eldar had reclaimed sufficient territory to once more be a threat to the Imperium on Metallo IV.

The Return of Inquisitor Butlerian - Arathis Secundus

Gray Knights vs Space Wolves

After many months away from the war zone, Inquisitor Butlerian has returned with grave news. Reports and psychic communiques have reached him that indicate the Eldar forces in the Midas sector are preparing for a strike at the heart of the Imperial forces in two key sectors - the Midas and Perseus sectors. Warmaster Xerxes gives permission for him to intercept and stop these schemes.

Arriving on Arathis Secundus with a force of Gray Knights just in time to witness the destruction of the last Eldar at the hands of the Space Wolves, Butlerian is furious. He berates the Wolf Lord for not waiting and searches the bodies for any further information about the upcoming attacks. When the Wolf Lord reveals that he has the documents from their Farseer and refuses to hand them over, Butlerian declares this company tainted by forces from the Warp.

The Gray Knights attack in response. The already weakened  Space Wolves attempt to regroup and fight back. However, against a fresh and fully equipped Gray Knight force they are unable to defeat, the Space Wolves are cut down. Butlerian takes the data crystals he seeks from the Wolf Lord's body and orders the bodies destroyed. Best to blame the massacre on the Eldar.

Wargames Continue - T'Lau

Imperial Guard vs Dark Angels

Wargames continue in the deserts of T'Lau with the Imperial Guard training to defeat a superior space marine opponent in preparation for the cleansing of the Midas sector of Chaos forces over the coming year. In two lengthy war games various elements of Guard regiments from throughout the local war zones fought and were successful eventually in defeating elements from the Dark Angels space marine chapter. The Dark Angels praised the bravery and skill of the Imperial Guard they faced and recommended that what they had learnt be distributed among their fellow guardsmen.

In truth the Dark Angels were humiliated but the repercussions of that would not occur for some time.

The Darkness is Driven Out - Metallo IV

Vostroyan Firstborn vs Dark Eldar

The attack on the remaining Dark Eldar stronghold at Metallo began with an Imperial assault that was swiftly driven back and an associated pincer movement blunted. Aid was called for, and the area was carpet bombed prior to the arrival of a detachment from the Vostroyan Firstborn newly arrived to support the war effort. With their arrival further direct attacks were halted and the battle lines bolstered. Several baneblade super heavy tanks arrived and in conjunction with further bombing the walls of the redoubt were breached.

The next day, in dense almost supernatural fog, both armies engaged in close quarters fighting. Both sides inflicted severe casualties to the other. The Vostroyan's were able to capture two kilometers of the southern front which the Dark Eldar failed to recapture.

The next day saw the Vostroyan tanks continue to pound on the enemy forcing them to retreat into the Imperial lines surrounding them though they failed to break through. For the rest of the day artillery and tanks rained fire down upon their positions. Any attempt by the Dark Eldar to escape was cut down by heavy weapons fire or Imperial aircraft.

It took two more days but with further aid from the Imperial Navy aircraft the Vostroyan Firstborn closed in and entrapped the piratical foe. The Dark Eldar on Metallo IV were cut down and their presence on that world eliminated.

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Update #77

"We're always in trouble! Isn't this extraordinary - it follows us everywhere!" 
- Cassius, Cadian guardsman

Tau Offensive Continues - Pyros II

Farsight Enclave vs Imperial Guard

In the early hours of 221214.M41 the 351st Cadian exchanged small arms fire with scout forces from the invading Farsight ground troops in the badlands of sector 477. By mid afternoon the main body of the Tau army had crossed into the sector and engaged the Imperial troops. The 351st responded with a barrage from a sizable basilisk detachment. The barrage continued for an hour until Commander Farsight ordered his orbiting starships to destroy the site from orbit. When the dust settled the Imperial forces responded with a wave of aircraft to strafe the incoming army.

The Imperial commanders plan was to hold the Enclave advance and slowly push them back into the badlands where the heat and lack of water would weaken them for a swift eradication. He hoped that it would both demoralize the enemy and give his special forces the opportunity to eliminate the infamous Commander Farsight. His advisers suggested that the Tau could survive for up to a week in the badlands with their current supply lines.

The battle plans changed with the arrival of a wing of Tau hammerhead class tanks outflanking the 351st from the deep deserts. They swiftly eliminated many of the Imperial defence weapons and forced the troops to retreat back into their bunkers. The Imperial commander then made an unwise decision. He ordered most of his troops to escort the remaining battle tanks out into the desert to combat the new Enclave hammerhead squadrons. The troops were not trained in combating the Tau and many were unable to keep up with the tanks. Without infantry support the leman russ battle tanks took a pounding from the enemy. Those troops who had kept up with the tanks found themselves surrounded by the skimmer tanks and destroyed along with their own tanks.

Two days later the Enclave deployed fresh troops and vehicles to the surface of Pyros II, rotating out those who had launched the first attack. The Imperial Guard had no chance of winning this battle and what few remained fought bravely to hold their bastions against the alien advance.

Help did come eventually when the Imperial Navy managed to destroy the Enclave command ship in orbit. Unfortunately it fell through the atmosphere and impacted near the main Imperial command station killing over seven thousand guardsmen and most of the command staff for the planet. A Pyrrhic victory for the Imperium but one that may well cost them the war for Pyros.

Wargames Continue - T'Lau

Ultramarines vs Iron Hands

Over the course of a week at the end of the year, two space marine chapters came together to hone their fighting skills. The Ultramarines and Iron Hands deployed across a narrow divide from one another with their commanders in a nearby bunker ordering tactical changes or objectives throughout the engagement. Although the Iron Hands seemed more capable of battlefield adaptation than the Ultramarines, they failed the war games due to focusing too heavily on objectives and not enough of halting the advance of the opposing force. After three days of simulated combat it was determined that the Ultramarines had successfully won the engagement.

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

The Fall of Port Peril - Callista VI

Orks vs White Scars

On Callista VI the last survivours of the Imperial forces had retreated to the ruins of Port Peril to await their end. The orks had swept through the outer defences slaughtering men, women and children as they did. At the last moment the orks found themselves under attack from behind. Out of the ruined boneyards swept a mounted wave of space marines on bikes.

The White Scars did not expect to be able to defeat the orks but only to distract them long enough for evacuation transports to get as many of the population to safety as they could. Over the next two days the fighting was intense. The orks put up a stiff resistance but still the space marines threw themselves into the greenskin lines.

When the last evacuation transport managed to escape, the White Scars retreated with the orks in fast pursuit. Although the civilians escaped and many orks were killed, Callista had been left in the hands of the orks while the Imperium focused on other more important targets.

Imperial Offensive Continues - Illiad

Blood Angels vs Necrons

Following the Armageddon Steel Legion's successful strike on Illiad, the Blood Angels arrived and launched an attack on the Necron. Having witnessed the Imperial strike on the chaos marines, the necrontyr were ready to repel an attack. When the Blood Angels attacked their lines they found they had to fight hard to defeat the machines.

The Necrons quickly surrounded the space marines and poured fire into their ranks. After an hour of furious close quarters fighting the Blood Angels broke through the lines and turned the tide of battle in their favour. At this time it was revealed to be a distraction as the Necron command tomb detonated. A team of terminator marines emerged from the rubble having breached the complex and planting charges.

The Necron warriors were thrown into chaos and the space marines cut them down with ease. Within a matter of hours the Imperium had established their dominance on Illiad.

The Imperium Strikes Back - Illiad

Armageddon Steel Legion vs Word Bearers

The Imperium has received fresh reinforcements in the form if an entire regiment of the Armageddon Steel Legion. At first they headed towards Midas Prime to aid in the recapture of the planet but Warmaster Xerxes countermanded the order and redirected them to Illiad. Their orders to engage the enemy and establish a beachhead for the further Imperial troops.

The attack began with the warships launching orbital strikes upon the traitor marine lines and then with a vast airborne deployment of manpower and tanks. The strikes caused severe damage and loss of life, preventing the traitor marines organising an adequate defence. As the troops deployed, a wave of valkyries struck at the Word Bearer defences further keeping them subdued.

Subsequent ground attacks forced the Word Bearers back into the wastes and closer to the Necron lines. The sheer number of tanks, artillery and man on the ground ensured that the traitor marines would be unable to adequately launch a counter attack.

From start to finish the battle lasted for three days and as the Steel Legion pushed out, the Mechanicum arrived to begin construction of new command bastion complex from which to launch the request of Illiad.