Death Guard vs Astra Militarum (1,000 pts) – Battle Report

My second game of 9th Edition, this is against Jake from Cadian Shock.  I was stomped in my first game, how would this go?

You can read Jake’s own report on this game here.

List Theory

IMG_1273.jpg

Looking back on my last game I decided that I had built a trick list around the Blight Grenades.  I had little room for manoeuvre if that strategy failed, and failed it did.  So with this game I was looking to build a list that would still let me try some of the new things from War of the Spider while also being a bit more “solid”.

The list started to be built around Myphitic Blight Haulers.  I haven’t played them in a long time.  They’re reasonably cheap (compared to Plagueburst Crawlers), would give me some anti-tank firepower and if I take the Poxmongers as my Plague Company I can give them a 4++ invulnerable save and let them all withdraw from combat and shoot (the stratagem affects a whole unit).

OK, so that’s a start. I need a character who will try to stick near to the Haulers to carry the Ironclot Furnace relic that gives them the 4++ invulnerable save.  I decide that this will be a Foul Blightspawn.  He will also let me try out the new Foulgush stratagem which buffs Blightspawns.  I’ll make him the Warlord with Arch-Contaminator so he’s as effective as possible.

I take two five man squads of Plague Marines with three plasma guns in each, there’s then also a Chaos Lord to allow them to re-roll 1s.  The Chaos Lord takes an additional relic, Wormspitter, which will cause targets he hits to become corroded and allow other weapons to be treated as Plague Weapons when they shoot at it.

Blightlord Terminators are another thing I’ve not tried in a long time, and there’s a stratagem that suits them too.  Relentless Volleys will make their combi-bolters Rapid 3, so 6 shots per Terminators on the turn that they arrive.

The list is rounded out with ten Poxwalkers for board control and/or objective grabbing.

The plan will be that the Haulers and the Blightspawn will work together and be as mobile as required.  The Plague Marines and the Chaos Lord will stick together.  All of these things can also be one big group as the buffs will nicely play together, but I don’t have to do that if I need to break apart.  Things will still work out OK.

The Terminators will probably deep strike and can be used to grab something or just to help assist somewhere as required.

The Game

Setup

IMG_1274

We rolled the Forward Push mission from the Grand Tournament 2020 book.  This gives us a primary of controlling at least one of the four objectives with increasing points for controlling more.  We then secretly select, and then reveal, out secondary objectives.

I select:

  1. Forward push – Mission specific secondary, even more points for controlling objectives with more points for how close to the enemy’s deployment zone they are.
  2. Thin their ranks – Kill things
  3. Bring it down – Kill big things

The Astra Militarum select:

  1. Engage on all fronts – Get into three quarters or all quarters of the board.
  2. Raise the banners high – Take an action on an objective to claim it for more points.
  3. Psychic ritual – A psyker must make 3 psychic actions over the game whilst being within 6″ of the table centre.

Note: We played Forward push wrong, it requires an action where as we scored the points if I was just controlling an objective.  The actions would mean giving up shooting, which make it a rubbish objective for me that I would not have taken had I read it properly.

We deploy and then roll that the Astra Militarum will take the first turn.

Battle Round 1

The Imperials rush forwards.  The smaller table really help them here, they’re 12″ from the centre which makes them 9″ from one objective and 15″ from the other.  Advancing gets them into position on three objectives and allows them to raise banners on  two of them.  The shooting is limited due to advancing, and also hindered by the LOS blocking effects of tall ruins in 9th, and not much of my stuff dies.

I now also push most of my stuff forward while holding on to one objective with my Poxwalkers.  I manage to blow up one Imperial Transport but that just vomits forth the Infantry from within, but I am starting to build up some kill points.

Progressive Scores

I’ll only list the objectives that are not scored at the end of the game.

  • Astra Militarum
    • Primary +0 (0pts)
    • Engage on all fronts +0 (0pts)
    • Raise the banners high +0 (0pts)
  • Death Guard
    • Primary +0 (0pts)
    • Forward push +1 (1pts)

Battle Round 2

The Imperials get a banner raised on a third objective, complete the second of three psychic actions and barely dent me with their fire.

On my turn I really need to kill things, or at least I think that I do.  I give up the objective in my deployment zone to bring up my Poxwalkers.  I still score the Primary for it during my command phase but I don’t score the secondary for it at the end of my turn.  And kill things I do.  But not, I think, the right things.

A big decision was where to deep strike the Terminators.  I worked out that if I dropped the onto the central ruin they would only have a 5″ charge to make.  This was due to the floors being just under 5″ apart.  The top floor was therefore more than 9″ away from the troops on the bottom.  Engagement range is now 5″ vertically, so boom 5″ charge.  However you can’t end your movement between floors.  So after the fight and with a 4″ movement they would be in trouble.  I’d have to advance them and give up a round of shooting.  This scared me off, and it shouldn’t have done.  Being in the centre would have been useful and I could have killed that Psyker this turn before he completed his third psychic action for 15VP.  Focus on the objectives!

Anyhow the Terminators drop off to one side, pop Relentless Volleys and mow down a squad of infantry.  But the vehicle they were in still holds the objective and it now has a banner on it.

Progressive Scores

  • Astra Militarum
    • Primary +15 (15pts)
    • Engage on all fronts +2 (2pts)
    • Raise the banners high +2 (2pts)
  • Death Guard
    • Primary +5 (5pts)
    • Forward push +0 (1pts)

Battle Round 3

The Astra Militarum are being pushed back and are losing objectives, but they’re still pretty solid in the centre.  Their fire is pretty ineffective and the Death Guard lose few casualties.  The psyker in the centre does get his third Psychic Action though, that’s 15CP they’ll pick up at the end of the game.

The Death Guard continue to pressure the centre.  All the Imperials there do fall, but they’ve earned so many points and I’m still not scoring well.  My Terminators are out of position, they lumber towards a tank sitting on an objective.

Progressive Scores

  • Astra Militarum
    • Primary +10 (25pts)
    • Engage on all fronts +0 (2pts)
    • Raise the banners high +3 (5pts)
  • Death Guard
    • Primary +0 (5pts)
    • Forward push +4 (5pts)

Battle Round 4

IMG_1289
We can make it lads!

There’s not many Imperials left but they’re still clinging on in there.

My Terminators just need to make a 5″ charge.  This will stop the enemy scoring an objective next turn and let me score it.  They blow it, even with a re-roll.  Likewise other units trying for a longer charge also mess it up.  Oh boy.  I score few points and set the Imperials up for a high scoring final round.

Progressive Scores

  • Astra Militarum
    • Primary +5 (30pts)
    • Engage on all fronts +2 (4pts)
    • Raise the banners high +2 (7pts)
  • Death Guard
    • Primary +5 (10pts)
    • Forward push +4 (9pts)

Battle Round 5

IMG_1291
The last survivor

The Imperials do score well, they are still clinging on to two objectives at the start of their turn while I just have one.  And that’s pretty unforgivable, I should have done better.

On my turn there’s not really a lot left to do and we race to the end.  The Astra Militarum are wiped out and I do score a lot for holding objectives at the end of my round but I’ve thrown so many more points away.

Progressive Scores

  • Astra Militarum
    • Primary +15 (45pts)
    • Engage on all fronts +0 (4pts)
    • Raise the banners high +2 (9pts)
  • Death Guard
    • Primary +5 (10pts)
    • Forward push +4 (9pts)

The Final Scores

I now include objectives that score at the end of the game.  I do well here as I killed an awful lot of stuff.  However my woeful primary score lets me down and it’s a decisive loss for the Death Guard.

  • Astra Militarum – 83pts
    • Primary +15 (45pts)
    • Engage on all fronts +0 (4pts)
    • Raise the banners high +2 (9pts)
    • Psychic ritual +15 (15pts)
    • Battle ready +10
  • Death Guard – 60pts
    • Primary +5 (10pts)
    • Forward push +15 (24pts, limited to 15pts)
    • Thin their tanks +8 (8pts)
    • Bring it down +12 (12pts)
    • Battle ready +10

Post Game Thoughts

The Game

  • I did not concentrate hard enough on both scoring primary objectives and denying them to my enemy.  Jake picked up the maximum score, 45 out of 45 points, for the primary objective, I picked up 10.  I really dropped the ball here.
  • The Terminators dropped in the wrong place.  The mission is what’s important and they would probably have killed the psyker and denied the enemy points.
  • The line of sight blocking scenery was great, it really cut back on the fire that I took in the first turn.

New things from War of the Spider

  • Foulgush, the stratagem for the Foul Blightspawn, was really quite useful and for 1CP a bit of a bargain.  Blightspawns, with their 1D6 attacks at 2D6 strength can be really “swingy” in terms of randomness which is why I would often take them in pairs.  Rolling an extra die and dropping the lowest just seems to take some of that away.  Of course in turn one rolled a 3, a 2 and another 2 for the Strength, but that will always happen sometimes.  I think the Blightspawn accounted for the majority of the damage on the enemy armour, thumbs up.
  • Relentless Volleys, this is very nice on the Blightlord Terminators.  It’s another 1CP stratagem if you have less than 5 models in the unit and it gives you a whole lot more attacks.
  • The relic Wormspitter also seemed to work really well in this game.  My units did end up moving forwards and getting close to the enemy so its 15″ range wasn’t an issue. There were a good few instances where the Plasma Guns ending up re-rolling all failed wounds because of the Arch-Contaminator being close by.
  • The Blight Haulers backed by a 4+ invulnerable save thanks to the Ironclot Furnace also seemed pretty solid.  They only offered their cover to nearby units in the first turn and they did race ahead spending one turn out of the Furnace’s range.  But for most of the game they had the 4+ and for most of the game they were pretty tanky.  A tentative thumbs up.
  • Bilious Bloodrush was used once for the Blight-haulers but it was useful.  They have a 10″ move as it is so the 2d6 charge helps them get that bit further ahead.  And then in the next turn I can pull them back and shoot again while the rest of my army catches up.  Another tentative thumbs up.

On 9th in General

  • The new missions are secondary objectives are quite complicated.  There’s an awful lot to juggle as you try to determine which secondaries are “right” for you.  I presume that this will become easier as I get more games under my belt.  Some are just going to work well with Dath Guard while others won’t.
  • The smaller table, as with my previous game, seem to really get things going quickly.  The Astra Militarum were on it in their first turn and I was up there close to them.
  • There are a lot of little tiny differences, like being unable to manifest a psychic power if you fell back, that one or both of us missed and there was a reasonable bit of book flipping to check it out.  It’s easy to fall into an assumption that it works like 8th, it often doesn’t.
  • It was really nice to note that even though my Death Guard did what my Death Guard can often do and wiped out the enemy army I still suffered a bad loss.  This seems to suggest that there is a better balance between “killy” armies and those that are fragile but can manoeuvre.
  • I always seem to have just enough command points.  In the last game I went through about four in one turn on one unit to very little effect.  In this one it was a CP here and then a CP there and it just felt a whole lot nicer.  Sometimes the thing I spent it on didn’t work out, but on the whole it felt positive.
  • I’m carrying a less books around.  The smaller Grand Tournament 2020 book replaces the bigger Chapter Approved and also the much bigger rulebook.  This is a good thing 🙂

The List

Total: 61 PL, 5CP, 997pts

Patrol Detachment (Death Guard) [61 PL, 5CP, 997pts]

Configuration

  • Plague Company: The Poxmongers
  • Gifts of Decay (1 Relic) [-1CP]

HQ [5 PL, 80pts]

  • Chaos Lord [5 PL, 80pts]: Bolt pistol, Chainsword, Wormspitter

Troops [17 PL, 310pts]

  • Plague Marines [7 PL, 120pts]
    Plague Champion [28pts]: Plague knife, Plasma gun [10pts]
    2x Plague Marine w/ boltgun [36pts]: 2x Blight Grenades, 2x Boltgun, 2x Krak Grenades, 2x Plague knife
    Plague Marine w/ special weapon [28pts]: Plasma gun [10pts]
    Plague Marine w/ special weapon [28pts]: Plasma gun [10pts]
  • Plague Marines [7 PL, 120pts]
    Plague Champion [28pts]: Plague knife, Plasma gun [10pts]
    2x Plague Marine w/ boltgun [36pts]: 2x Blight Grenades, 2x Boltgun, 2x Krak Grenades, 2x Plague knife
    Plague Marine w/ special weapon [28pts]: Plasma gun [10pts]
    Plague Marine w/ special weapon [28pts]: Plasma gun [10pts]
  • Poxwalkers [3 PL, 70pts]
    10x Poxwalker [70pts]: 10x Improvised weapon

Elites [18 PL, 307pts]

  • Blightlord Terminators [14 PL, 222pts]
    Blightlord Champion [43pts]: Bubotic Axe [5pts], Combi-bolter [3pts]
    Blightlord Terminator [50pts]: Flail of Corruption [15pts]
    Blightlord Terminator [43pts]: Bubotic Axe [5pts], Combi-bolter [3pts]
    Blightlord Terminator [43pts]: Bubotic Axe [5pts], Combi-bolter [3pts]
    Blightlord Terminator [43pts]: Bubotic Axe [5pts], Combi-bolter [3pts]
  • Foul Blightspawn [4 PL, 85pts]: 6. Arch-Contaminator, Ironclot Furnace, Warlord

Fast Attack [21 PL, 300pts]

  • Myphitic Blight-haulers [21 PL, 300pts]
    Myphitic Blight-hauler [7 PL, 100pts]: Missile launcher [20pts], Multi-melta [25pts]
    Myphitic Blight-hauler [7 PL, 100pts]: Missile launcher [20pts], Multi-melta [25pts]
    Myphitic Blight-hauler [7 PL, 100pts]: Missile launcher [20pts], Multi-melta [25pts]

2 thoughts on “Death Guard vs Astra Militarum (1,000 pts) – Battle Report

  1. Pingback: Death Guard & Nurgle Daemons vs Astra Militarum (1,000 pts) – Battle Report – Plague Gardening

  2. Pingback: Death Guard & Nurgle Daemons vs Dark Angels (1,000 pts) – Battle Report – Plague Gardening

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s