|The casualties of my Apocalypse game, awaiting some TLC (and some superglue)|
So, my Apocalypse adventure has come to a close. I’ve got some tactical insights, some fun photos, some amusing memories and some damaged figures with transport- and play-inflicted injuries.
I've spilled a lot of digital ink on the topic:
- Part 1: Set-Up and Turn 1
- Part 2: Turns 2 & 3
- Part 3: Turn 4
- Part 4: Turns 5 & 6
- And an Imgur album with every photo I took at the game.
It took a fair of organizing to make it happen, and of course a lot of time to play – it’s not something I can expect to repeat any time soon, not least because our respective partners would kill us if we tried – but it produced a really fun experience. It felt like an epic event, something different than Just Another Game Of Warhammer.
|The battlefield after the end of the game.|
Did the rules have issues? Well, the rules don’t get changed so things do go slowly and there is some trouble just keeping track of who has moved/shot/assaulted on any given turn. (I might consider "activation" markers next time around.) At the table the huge amount of time spent playing didn’t drag, though – I was always surprised to look at the time and realize another hour had passed.
It should be noted we weren’t using much in the way of Apocalypse specific rules – no Baneblades, Thunderhawks or other large units – so obviously our experience will vary from those who use this size of game to play stuff like Warhound Titans or Stompas, where apparently the balance issue is felt more.
|A lot of models set up for the first turn.... but no crazy Strength D or HP 12 items.|
We never had to resort to dice rollers, just rolling our big piles of dice in distinct blocks – so never actually rolling 51 dice in one go, but we might roll three 13s then drop a dice for the final roll of 12. I might feel differently if there were more large units acting – a forty boy Ork mob charging a fifty man Imperial Guard blob might drag more – but in practice the game felt fresh even when we had hour-long turns.
|The Imperial Priest looks up exactly how many special rules the Sisters unit are affected by this turn.|
Could I have played better? My tactics definitely had issues, not helped by bad luck on turn one when I lost the Vindicator and Land Raider as effective units. I became very nervous about using Fulgrim, though experience suggests his 2+/5++ save vs ranged weapons means I probably should have charged him up the bridge and taken my chances. The opening salvo of fire had the required effect – witness the destruction of functionally all the Seraphim Sister assault troops – but losing the heavy weapons meant I lost one of my main advantages on the table, namely my quantity of heavy weaponry.
|In foreground, a Chaos Contemptor Dreadnought with twin-linked Autocannon and Conversion Beamer - unfortunately taken out of play too early to make much of an impact.|
The back of the table was where the table was really won and lost – if I could have taken those objectives on Turn 4 and then destroyed them with my Strategic Asset card, David would have been far harder pressed going into the last stretch. I just needed more units at the back – two small Raptor units didn’t have the numbers to carry assaults or hold out against enemy fire. On reflection I might have been better picking a unit of Chaos Terminators for my army and teleporting those into the back, perhaps sending them into the building and focusing all the Raptors on the turbine.
|The buildings at the end of turn 1. With a few more models I could have maybe broken the stalemate here.|
Dave didn’t have it all easy, though. His Chapter Master and Marines may have tied me up in the forest, but losing the Titus so ignominiously was a real blow. (Especially as he didn't get to do use any of his big tricks.) He struggled a bit back-table in the early game when my Deep Strikers appeared - whereas his Crisis Suits found units sweeping in from my rear guard to fight them, my Obliterators got turns of unobstructed tank destruction. Finally he was very unlucky to lose as many of his Sisters as he did - rather than close combat Seraphim carrying the day for him, it was sheer weight of close-range Tau firepower.
|Me bowing up Saint Celestine twice wasn't exactly fun for Dave either.|
|Would rather be on the other end of this sort of exchange!|