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 Shadowsun Eclipsed

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Number of posts : 761
Registration date : 2007-04-26

PostSubject: Shadowsun Eclipsed   Mon 5 Jan - 12:04:59

Shadowsun Eclipsed

Overlord Acrimhan took the 64th Shock Brigade to attack Tau positions in sector 91 of the Zelini salient. He used two squads of immortals, each nine strong with gauss armed troops in the centre holding an objective and tesla equipped troops on the right holding another.

Three wraiths with whip coils were also on the right whilst on the left the Doomsday Ark NNV Mass Destruction provided heavy support. A trio of tomb blades lay behind high ground centre left and a second trio was behind our centre. Total force strength was just 736, but the overlord had marshalled his main force, another 1262 strong in reserve. Intel suggested that the enemy strength was 1863.

He accompanied a cryptek and full squad of deathmarks aboard the Night Scythe NNV Fighting Chance; a third squad of immortals with gauss blasters led by a cryptek was aboard the Night Scythe NNV Quartermaster, whilst the Doom Scythe NNV Harrier was our third flier.

Ready to outflank, a Tomb Stalker and ready to deep strike, a Death Ray equipped sentry pylon, these last two both equipped with sepulchral scarabs. The enemy had a piranha on our far left, clearly anxious to use its meltas against the Mass Destruction. The main force clustered in and around the large ruin that dominated the centre right.

In the ruin, seven pathfinders, behind it, three broadsides, to the left from our point of view, Commander Shadow Sun and four battlesuits, facing our right, two squads of fire warriors, one accompanied by their Aethereal Warlord.

The enemy formation was dominated however by the huge Riptide that faced our right. Intercepted signal traffic showed that the enemy was in touch with at least two units of Kroot, location unknown.

We advanced on a broad front except on the left but our heavy fire did little to the Tau who lost a solitary pathfinder,* their Piranha evading the shot from the Mass Destruction. Our left hand tomb blades secured our first objective on the high ground centre left.

*Post match investigation revealed illegal use of Tau stealth technology giving a 2+ save instead of the actual 5+ entitlement. Bearing in mind over 20 shots fired some twin linked wounds were well into double figures, statistically this should have been first blood to us with a reduced weight of counterfire possibly saving at least one of the units destroyed later this turn and certainly reducing fire warrior accuracy and range for the rest of the engagement. Cheating Tau!

The enemy reply was devastating however, our tesla carbine armed immortals, wraiths and tomb blades fell to fire from Shadowsun and her team, the Riptide, (despite no fewer than seven of its shots getting hot,) fire warriors and Broadsides. First Blood to the enemy and the score 1-1 after the opening exchange, but Acrimhan’s forces were now dangerously depleted.

Now our reserves began to arrive, the Quartermaster dropped its half dozen immortals in front of Shadowsun and her team whilst the Tomb Stalker appeared behind the Piranha. Our tomb blades darted left to threaten the piranha that was approaching the Mass Destruction. Our central immortals were trying to reach the right hand objective that we were now prioritising.

The Mass Destruction fired on Shadow sun’s team and together with the Quartermaster and her passengers reduced the battlesuits to two. The Tomb Blades, aided by the port batteries of the Mass Destruction and the Tomb Stalker wrecked the Piranha for our first kill and a victory point.

Now two squads of Kroot appeared unexpectedly on our right where we had already lost most of our forces. The Kroot fired on our right hand immortals as did the Riptide and Fire warriors cutting them to ribbons. The battlesuits wiped out the smaller newly arrived immortals too, but the Broadsides failed to hit the Quartermaster despite Skyfire targeting systems. One tomb blade fell to the more central fire warrior squad, but it reanimated.

The Tau had targeted our officer cadre and received a victory point for the slaying of our cryptek making the score this turn 1-1 again, 2-2 overall. Now our remaining reserves arrived: The sentry pylon deep struck successfully to the enemy rear on the right, the Fighting Chance and Harrier both targeted the right where we had no force left and our deathmarks were dropped in front of the Riptide, taking an objective as they did so.

Our newly arrived fliers opened fire on the two Kroot squads, inflicting losses on them both and the Fighting Chance hit the fire warriors in the centre causing losses which also affected the neighbouring unit with tesla arcing. The Death Ray from the sentry pylon was disappointing against the fire warriors whilst the deathmarks reduced the Riptide to two wounds.

The Riptide now suffered a systems overload, hampering its weapons’ effectiveness this turn, the Broadsides again failed to damage the Quartermaster as it passed overhead whilst the warriors advanced towards an objective in the centre of our deployment zone. Shadow sun ominously headed towards the Mass Destruction and sure enough blew it up with melta fire.

The tomb blades fell to the central fire warriors and the deathmarks were reduced to just five, the overlord and their cryptek falling to the heavy fire from the Tau and their allies. The Kroot then assaulted, but lost the combat narrowly and then broke, fleeing towards the Tau lines. Yet again, the score was 1-1 with the deathmarks seizure of an objective and the enemy slaying our warlord. 3-3 at the end of turn three.

All reserves already on for both sides and our Death Pylon now destroyed the Riptide at last and the Harrier wiped out the Kroot squad whose morale was still intact. The Fire warriors took losses and the Aethereal was wounded by our fliers and the Aethereal left the few survivors to join the more intact central fire warrior squad.

The Broadsides now managed seven hits on the Fighting Chance as she approached them but incredibly failed to damage her at all, however, the Tau scored two points this turn for taking two objectives they needed with no reply, so the score moved to 3-5 against us.

Our fliers and Death Pylon now targeted the Aethereal and his unit and brought heavy fire to bear, ironically nine hits from snapshots from the Fighting Chance delivered the coup de grace. The few survivors of the other squad were destroyed by tesla arcing and a clip from the Harriers’ death ray. The deathmarks finished off the fleeing Kroot who had failed to rally, our tomb stalker assaulted shadow sun and her last surviving battlesuit, inflicting one wound but falling to shadow sun’s Onager Gauntlet.

The Tau scored three victory points this turn though shooting down the Harrier as the Broadsides at last found their range, and seizing two objective points, however crucially they failed to move into our deployment zone. We meanwhile scored no fewer than five victory points for slaying the enemy warlord bringing the score to 8-8 but then the engagement broke off unexpectedly and with out sentry pylon having linebreaker whilst Shadowsun and her battlesuit had stopped short of our deployment zone, the final score was 9-8 in our favour.

The enemy had Shadowsun and a wounded battlesuit, six pathfinders of seven originally deployed and all three broadsides, a force strength of perhaps 500 representing a casualty rate of around 75%. They had lost seven complete units with four surviving. Our rallied strength was 486, a loss rate of over 75% with ten complete units lost and four surviving: The Pylon, Night Scythes and 40% of our deathmarks.


Campaign Update

Our fifth win to add to one draw and three defeats so far.

Currently we hold 8 battle zones on three of the systems four worlds, including four on Eden Fall where we have a manufactorum and Command Bastion. We also hold a shield generator and a second manufactorum on Odessa and two zones on the ice world. Subject to confirmation this victory should enable us to take the last unoccupied zone on Eden Fall bringing our strength there to five zones held.
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