I had a horrible night in the hotel Saturday night. I'm a pretty light sleeper, so things that many folks sleep right thru keep me up. There was a party going on in the hotel. The party itself was no big deal, but it was between multiple rooms, with people opening and closing doors and hooting and hollering in the hallway until 2am. My second trip down to the lobby to talk to the staff, the guy I'm speaking to is telling me that he'll take care of it, it will be no problem...but he's taking cups and buckets of ice up to the room! Hello, dickhead...you're not helping, here! I got a bit short with the guy, asking him if this was a hotel or a night club. When I told him my next call would not be to the front desk, but to the police, he finally started taking it a bit more serious, and the party wound down shortly after.
I'm a 10-hour sleeper. Any less and I'm a bit off. With three kids, I'm always a bit off...but after 5 hours of sleep in the hotel I was a LOT off. Getting dressed and out the door was difficult that morning. We ran in to Bob and Brandon from Brothers Grim at the Dunkin Donuts, and sitting and chatting with them got me a little revived. Coffee and Dew hadn't done the trick for me on Saturday, so I went with a giant iced chick-coffee drink and fruit juice. Hey, why not!
I found myself across the table from a shaven-head gentleman from BFS who's name I believe was Jeff. He was very sharp, crisp, and confident. His was an army-type that I'd expected to have to face many of: Space Wolves, Long Fangs, and millions of Razors and Rhinos. When I really looked at his list, though, it wasn't quite as scary as the abundance of vehicles made it seem. He had one Rune Priest only, with Lightning and Tempest; 6 units of 5 Grey Hunters in Rhinos, each with just a Meltagun. No power weapons, fists, standards as I recall; he had two units of two Thunderwolves, each unit had one model with 2 claws, but no other upgrades; and he had three Long Fangs (I believe all Missiles) with Razorbacks (Las-Plas). So lots and lots of vehicles, but not a lot of ability to project force once the vehicles started breaking.
The mission was Dawn of War and Kill Points. I won the roll and for some reason had him go first. It seemed like a good idea at the time. With the little sleep I was really on auto-pilot. I took very few photos of the game, focusing on figuring out how many dice I needed to use and trying to remember to use all my guys every turn...I was very much expecting to get wiped out quickly, and playing in the 500pt game that Fritz was running. In fact as he was moving his stuff on first turn I was reviewing my 500 points list! (Baron, 19 hellions, and 5 Wyches with Haywires! Muhaha!) My list bleeds kill points pretty badly (though not as badly as some DE armies), and I felt I had only a couple turns in which to kill his vehicles, compounded by the need to take down the Wolves quickly.
So, in other words, I was not really in to the game nor awake in the slightest until later in to it.
I believe I got the +1 WS drug here, which was moderately helpful, but far from my favorite. I would like to have had the free Pain drug this game, or the extra Str...I expected to need the Hellions to Assault a lot of vehicles this game!
He deployed a Rhino with GH at the halfway line just to my right of the center terrain. I put the Hellions out 18" away, hopefully with cover from the little hill near them in case they pulled up to rapid-fire; they left a tail for the Baron to catch when he came in. I hoped he'd move that Rhino to my bottom right to get at the objective/quarter...but instead he drove on the rest of his army and backed that Rhino up to get in line with the others. He tried a little shooting at the Hellions but gave up quickly...I think he forgot he had searchlights, so trying with everything that had LOS would have been wise, I think.
I flew on the empty Wrack Venom. The Hellions took the Haemi's Pain and moved up behind the central hill while the Haemi jumped in the Venom. Wracks & Baron walked on, the Baron stole their Pain and flew to join the Winged Monkeys while the Wracks got in the Venom with the Haemi. Ravagers came on in the far corner behind a big many-windowed ruin where they could shoot at his left vehicles but he'd struggle to get LOS from his right. The Venoms came on hugging my back corner. Reavers flew up where I thought they'd be safe from Wolf charges...but I suck at guessing charge ranges... The Incubi Raider flew up supporting the Reavers on my left, where if they got blown up they'd still have range to hit some Long Fangs
Turn 2 and he blew up the Raider, no pinning. He tried to shoot up Reavers, but cover save minimized losses. I got two squads too close, they were shattered by Wolves. Bummer. My turn the Hellions moved up ready to gun down and assault Wolves. Incubi ran out ready to assault Long Fangs. He had two models with their bases outside the area terrain they were in, and I used my run to arrange it so only one of my models could get to base to base, thus avoiding the need for difficult terrain and negating my no-grenade disadvantage. Woot! Shooting did well, taking out a unit of 2 Wolves, a Razorback and a Rhino. The Rhino occupants fell out right in front of the Hellions, giving me a dilemma...run and engage both the 5 Hunters & 2 Wolves, or be conservative and shoot up and assault the wolves. I went for both, figuring I could focus on the Wolves to get the third Pain Point I needed to be fearless, then be safe from shooting, worst case hit & run away next turn. So I ran, and got a good charge in. I did PILES of wounds...I believe it was 10 wounds to the Grey Hunters and 8 to the Wolves...something really nice like that. Out of all that he saved all but 1 wound on a Wolf and 2 Grey Hunters, leaving 3 Hunters and both Wolves to hit me back...Uhoh! Luckily the power/rending attacks weren't too severe, and I lost combat by only a bit and held in. I believe the Incubi were unable to finish off the Long Fang, getting stuck in a fight there...not horrible, at least not getting shot at!
I forgot to mention, I'd been being whittled down by that damned Tempest's Wrath. Even with Baron's reroll I was losing 1-2 guys every time I moved. What a horrible spell to have to deal with! The first time the Baron got in range, he rolled a 1, his reroll was a 1, and his Flickerfield save was a 1. Can I go back to sleep now?
A Rhino behind the wrecked vehicles moved around, and the guys got out to shoot up my Reavers. I'd foolishly backed them up far enough to be away from assault, but that put them outside cover...stupid! They were gunned down and died. Other vehicles shuffled around to shoot at my vehicles with little effect. I believe the Wrack Venom was immobilized. The Hellions killed one Wolf and all but one Hunter in melee, then hit & run away. Incubi finished off the Long Fangs.
My memory of this gets pretty hazy here, so I'll skip ahead a bit. The remaining Hellions assaulted Long Fangs and a Razorback, killing both. He kept sending one squad of Grey Hunters at a time to rapid fire/melta the Incubi, who kept taking the shots, charging out, and killing them, then consolidating back in to cover. They ended with 3 pain tokens, as did the Hellions. I shot down a few more vehicles, while he shuffled around to my right later in the game to hope to tie KP and win on Quarters. Last turn he unloaded everything at the Hellions and Baron (who were fearless), and with a lot of luck on my part failed to kill them all...the Helliarch and Baron (with 1 wound and no Flickerfield!) survived.
I won on Kill Points, having 10 to his 5. This result was a HUGE surprise for me...like I said I was more than pessimistic going in to this, and wasn't even fully engaged until end-game time. I really feel that if he'd had one fewer Grey Hunter/Rhino squad, but used those points to buy some Wolf Standards and replace the Rhinos with HB Razorbacks he'd be a lot more competitive. As it was I really had little to fear from the small-sized spartan Grey Hunter units or their Rhinos, so dealing with the missiles and Razors was all I had to do. He did have a bad-luck streak at the end there, failing to kill off the Hellions and Baron with all his shooting (he did kill a ton of them though, those two were just the survivors), but I think even if he'd killed them I would have tied on Quarters and won on KP.
So Game 5 done, and I'm not out of the tournament yet!
Note the complete lack of Mt. Dew in these photos....truly a miracle that I could play and win without!!