And now for the conclusion of this mega battle. Just incase you hadn't seen the previous parts, here are the links:
Panoramic view of the battlefield. Taken by The Hairy Painter himself- Richard Eddon.
Cavalry Sgt. Galbraith dug his heels into the flanks of his steed and felt the jolt of speed as he sped to a gallop. The Penal Legionnaires were picking their way through the debris left by the bombardment,moving implacably forwards, their overseers barking at them to keep moving. He unsheathed his sabre and held it forward, signalling his men to form up. They would be the first to the defence line. The first to engage the vile green skins. His blood was up!
Trackle Black Secradda and his mob were clanking across the bridge, moving as fast as their armour would allow to close with the hoomies. He could see the grot crews sighting up the Lobbas, ready to rain fire upon the Imperials. The Killa Kans splashed through the river, also keen to engage the enemy. As he entered the shadow of the hulking Squiggoth, he could see the lootas pouring fire into the oncoming attackers. The beast was moving quickly, angered by the laser fire and cannon shot that was smacking its hide. A smile crossed Trackle's evil face, turned to a grimace and ended in a bellowing call to his Boyz.
Turn 2 was more of the same. The Imperials running as swiftly forward as they could. Taking pot shots in a attempt to thin the numbers. With so many company commanders and platoon commanders I was able to issue a load of orders. Mainly in the form of ignoring cover, firing and running and move move move orders. This, coupled with divination psychic powers (prescience in particular), makes an imperial guard infantry force very manoeuvrable without sacrificing too much shooting capacity. My ogryns and Bullgryns were close to the barricades in the centre, but rather than risk a 10" charge through difficult terrain, I decided to open up with their guns. The ogryns are pretty brutal at this range, and I managed to all but remove one of the shoota boyz squads manning the first defence line.
The cavalry moved forward, hoping to gain a charge next turn. The Penal squad advanced aswell, running for all they were worth towards the defence line. With the squad on this side reduced to half strength, I felt confident that these squads would be able to clear the first line, should they survive Toms turn 2.
The Orks reserves saw two of the three dakkajets come into play, and also Snikrot and his motley crew would be outflanking me with two flamers. This was sure to slow me down. The squiggoth's Lobba attempted a shot on Commissar bilk, but scattered. The Lobbas on the left hand side opened fire on the penal detachment, cutting them to shreds. Only two legionaries and the commissar attached to the unit survived. The remaining boys fired into the rough riders, taking out three.
Snikrots flamers fired, burning up 8 guardsmen in Bilk's blob and killing a further rough rider.
The Dakkajets poured fire into the Bullgryns, killing one of the hulking beats. Those shields really do take a lot of heat.
The Ork Flyboyz arrive, not slowed by the "adverse weather conditions" that had grounded their Imperial counterparts.
The advancing imperials make stead progress. their officers spurring them on.
The Penal detachment (counts as conscripts) pile forward in a sucidal drive to the ork lines.
The Squiggoth lurches forward, plugging the weakened centre of the Ork defence.
Following Snikrots dastardly outflank, the Imperials rally for revenge.
The flames licked at Bilks storm coat. The screams of the men cut through the whoosh of the flamers. The Ork skirmishers had sneaked through the rubble and countered the left flank. "On your feet!" Bilk exclaimed as he hauled a trooper to his feet. Through the smoke, the Ork intruders could be seen whooping and firing their hand cannons. Hard slugs burnt the air. "Into them, hold firm", Bilk called. Now was not the time for rousing speeches. That was Lord Commissar Delvin's department anyway, Bilk knew. Show strength and the men will respond. He levelled his bolt pistol and fired, knocking one of the green skins sideways. Lt. Kludt brought his plasma team to bear, slicing through the attackers with ruthless efficiency, giving the milling troopers from red platoon the chance to level their lasguns and begin the charge.
Skarblitz thrust the stick forward , diving towards his target. He growled as his thumb pressed the big red button, feeling the superstructure shudder as the Dakka Guns discharged hateful fury at the foe. The Big Hoomies were his target. He could catch a glimpse of them being ripped apart by the explosive shells. Often the fighta was too quick to let him watch his prey disintegrate, but these big uns were easy to see. He let out a chuckle as he barrel-rolled past, banking to line up his next target.
Turn three I was able to exact revenge on the outflanking mob. my entire left flank opened fire on the infiltrators, cutting them down. The rapier weapons platform caused another wound to the Squiggoth, knocking it down to four wounds (still a long way to go. The ogryns managed to step into the right hand side trenches, clearing the first mob out enough to gain a foothold. The remaining rough riders and penal detachment hit the now weakened left flank and defeated the Ork defenders. The commissar, in single combat, cut the head from the Ork knob. These units consolidated into the bunker to stay out of line of site of the incoming fire-storm.
Tom retaliated with brutal efficiency. The Grotzoomas from his Killa Kans bit deep into blue platoon, forth company, and killed 3 of major Eklan's command squad. With Delvin nearby, the guardsmen held there ground. The Lobbas cut down an autocannon squad on the right flank, drastically reducing imperial fire-power.
The dakkajets switched to the less armoured Ogryns, and pulverized the squad. Just one remained on one wound.
The Squiggoth bulldozed into the Bullgryns, Killing one with its hammer of wrath attacks, and injuring another. The Bullgryns managed to take two wounds off the Squigoth. With three wounds to go, it was a tough brute to shift.
The Rough Riders make it to the Barricades first, but suffer terrible casualties for the privilege.
The Commissar and Nob duel to the death.
The Dakkajetz hosed the Ogryns. Their flak armour useless against the fusillade.
Captain Pluskat pushed his men forward as he watched the jets scream in and open fire on the Ogryns. "Snap targets, open up on that Jet!" Pluskat called. It was a long shot, but he knew they had to at least force the Ork Fighter planes off the attack. With little anti air, the platoons of 3rd company opened up with krak grenades and missiles. Static electricity grew around him and he could taste metal. The Psykers were working. They were guiding the missiles onto their target. As the first fighter barrel-rolled, it erupted in a vast ball of flame. They had scored one hit, knocking out the first plane. The second flier screeched over head, smoke pouring from one engine, but still it came on, gunning for Captain Sperrick's support line.
Trackle Clunked across the bridge. As he heard an explosion rip behind him. Small dark figures had fallen from the sky, stick things, and had knocked out one of the Lobbas. Frustration took him. "Boyz, Get back dere an' Kill dem sneaks!" The mega Nobs Roared and clunked back to defend the guns.
On Turn 4 My reserves finally arrived. Two scion squads armed with two meltas each dropped into the Ork rear line. They wanted to destroy the Ork big guns and hopefully have at least one man left to capture the objective.
My infantry pressed on, clearing the first trench line. The final objective was still a long way off (almost 5' away from my front line. I knew my only hope was the scions, although they looked pretty vulnerable, with a squad of mega Nobs and a mob of 4 Killa Kans after them.
I managed to push up Bilk's platoon and in my tun I took out the squiggoth. The ogryns, dealing the final wounds. However this now left them open to a charge from the second Killa Kan mob.
Trackle Black, joined the remaining untouched boyz mob, creating what was going to be a massive and deadly speed bump. The Orks rolled on another Dakkajet, and the Lobbas and Grotzoomas from the Killa Kans took out one squad of scions. The other squad, reduced to three men, took cover by the bunker. Hopefully they could now just hold off until the end of the game. The forward Dakkajet all but destroyed Captain Sperrick's command squad, with only Captain Sperrick and two squad members surviving.
The Killa Kans In the Centre charge into the Bullgryns, stopping their advance, and killing another two. The Bullgryns retaliate and knock out all but one of the Kans.
The Squiggoth is finally destroyed as the third flier zooms past to engage the Imperial back line.
The remaining scions hunker down to avoid return fire.
The Imperial Infantry finally climb over the first defence wall.
They had made it through the first line. The Ork dead lay on the ground and red platoon bayoneted the bodies as they passed. The Imperial dead, so far lay beyond, in no man's land, but bilk knew many more would join them soon. The Ork artillery still came down, knocking Lt. Kludt's squad into the trees, mangling several of the squad members in the process. The platoon hunkered down in the first bunker, staying away from the hurtling shrapnel. Bilk Breathed deeply through his nose, straightened up and called, "Okay, move it out men, keep going!". The strain was beginning to show on the troops, but there was still a long way to go.
Lord Commissar Delvin, drove his men forward, pushing up in support of the Bullgryns who were now finishing off the dreaded walkers, and about to face a new mass of enemy infantry. "For your Emperor, Men, For your Mother world and For the 40th Corps!" He chanted, driving them on. The men were ready to hit the lines, having watched their brothers toil through the first line, they were keen to break the next wave.
Trackle Black knew a good fight when he saw one. Kicking over the dead Ork in front of him, he trampled on, smelling the scrap to come. Those Big Hoomies looked like they would be fun, not like the matchsticks he was used to squishing. He Thundered forward, each step shaking the ground as the boyz followed him in. They waved axes and fired in the air, ready to join the slaughter.
Skarblitz pulled out of his attack and arched round. He felt an impact on the wing, and he pulled hard on the stick. He'd been stung again. He bellowed angrily at the ground as he tried to regain control. He engaged the thrusters and zoomed forward. Maybe he could speed off and swing back for another run...and get his revenge.
Turn 5 saw the Imperials push right into the 1st defence line. The Orks however are far from beaten, with two defence lines to go and a whole host of obstacles in between the Guard are far from completing their mission.
The Lobbas continue their relentless bombardment.
The Final combat. The Bullgryns hold to the charge of the mighty Ork Warboss.
The game finished here, as it was getting late, so we concluded to play the rest of the battle as 2 or 3 smaller games. We will section up the battlefield and fight each one as a stand alone action with simple objectives.
This game was a lot of fun, even though it was incredibly rushed. Both Tom and myself are glad to have finally nailed a big game. It was a great spectacle to see the two forces arrayed against each other. Next time, it will be nice to have some armour, however I would imagine the Orks will have some nasty tricks up their sleeves by then too. :)