Having played the prequel published it White Dwarf and "suicide mission" (it was quick to set up) it made sense to start at mission one rather then dip in and out of the missions.
The good news is we are definitely getting quicker at setting the board up!
Al plays the Genies (I think hes getting a taste for them) and I am the pointy teethed marines (don't mention the "V" word).
Al being the gentlemen he is reaches for his ten blips without looking and places two in each room.
I set my squads and roll for landing section.
A low CP token means I do not get the clean dispersal I really want but thankfully I have enough CP's to fire off the flamer if needed.
Thankfully Al is only allowed 3 AP's for the first two turns so my slow dispersal is not so painful.
Al make his first mistake and does not convert all his blips before charging and I fry 3 stealers with one roll.
|"Eat flaming fury"|
The first two turns mostly sees Al's Stealers fried, shot and clumped by my Marines. The Thunder Hammer / shield combo is new to me but the Sarge with the Hammer is a beast in Melee with guard on him and its the first time I have ever felt on an equal footing when slugging it out with Stealers!
With the first three rooms cleared and massive losses for Al, I decide to go on the offensive and spread out aggressively to wipe out the Stealers before Al has a chance to mass his forces.
Al spots the opportunity to get me to waste a flamer token and charges my flamer. The boys in red calmly steps aside and the Sarge guns down the lone Genie.
My plan is to turn the long corridors on the sides into killing fields and force the Genies into the centre where I can then flush them out with the flamer. Time will tell.
Al continues to charge his forces in piecemeal and gets a short, sharp, lesson on how effective the Assault Cannon is!
I need to push some Marines into the centre to clear doors for the end game. Every game needs its pawns.
Al takes the bait!
Sarge "Big Hammer" continues his charge and I camp him in the doorway with 2 marines on overwatch in case it all goes wrong.
I end up losing Sarge but the overwatch takes care of the remaining Stealer.
A series of ridiculously high rolls see my bait marines actually clear their rooms and this leaves me in a really strong position to push forward during the end game.
Al desperately tries to conserve the remainder of his forces before turn nine when his reinforcements stop. This forces Al to rush into the more labyrinth sections in the centre of the board ("I love it when a plan comes together!").
Turn nine........................... time to tighten the noose!
Suddenly Al makes an attempt to escape the trap and makes a break for my single marine. Unfortunatley I have not had time to get the Assault Cannon up in support.
If Al breaks free it will cost me the game as it will leave Al clear to roam the rooms behind my cordon forcing the draw!
Al survives the hail of over watch fire and gets to grip with my Marine. He then rolls 5's for his combat roll. This could spell disaster for me!...................
Thankfully the Emperor smiles on me and a unbelievably lucky roll of a 6 wins me the combat and could win me the game.
How close was that!
Out of shot I get one Marine to blast away the door protecting Al's reserve of Stealers (AFTER TEN SHOTS!!!!!) but it does allow me to get the flamer shot in and wipe out a large part of Al's reserves.
With my Flamer marine rampaging round the rear of Al's stealers with support Al is force into a hail of Overwatch fire.
The remaining Stealers are gunned down without mercy and the Blood Angels have secured the Beachhead!
Finally a win for the Marines.
1) The Thunder Hammer is a revelation to me and with guard becomes a real stalwart to hold back a mass of Stealers.
2) Stealers must be massed for maximum effect or raced round the sides for flank attacks.
3) Playing Marines is a real balancing act between board control and supporting fields of fire.