Battle Report – Apocalyptic Devastation: Night Lords & Legio Fureans vs Emperors Children & Daemons of the Ruinstorm

Introduction:

For a while now the gaming group have been discussing doing Horus Heresy in large format games and recently it was decided that the Warhammer 40,000 Apocalypse game we were due to play would be changed to Horus Heresy. The reasons for this are twofold:

1. We have a lot of 30K players in the group and want to play a big game, so this would serve as a testbed for that big game.

2. Horus Heresy is so much better than 40,000 to play.

I’ll be covering the following in this batrep:

Scenario
Board Build
Lists
Turn Summary
Comments

It’s going to be a long one – so take this time to get a cup of tea before you carry on!

Scenario:
The Warmaster has dispatched Fulgrim to wage a campaign of destruction through a system called Cadeullus close to the Mandeville point of the Sol System. This campaign is to draw forces loyal to the Emperor from their defensive positions and use supplementary forces to the Emperors Children to encircle and destroy.

The Night Lords were dispatched upon return from the Thramas crusade to perform this encirclement function. They included an element of the titan legion, Legio Fureans in their complement, whereas the Emperors Children were to take advantage of their Librarius and further understanding of the forces of the Ruinstorm.

Upon arriving in the Cadeullus system the Emperors Children found that many of the planets were barren, with a single resource-rich world that was well populated being the sole focus of Loyalist forces. Fulgrim boarded his Storm Bird and descended to the planet surface to begin the campaign. They met little resistance by the underequipped loyalist forces and did not deploy their Librarius.

Night Lords forces under the command of Jago Sevatar approached the planet a few days later from the dark side and began a brutally quick deployment of Terror units and elements of a Caradara Armoured Claw. Mis-identifying Emperors Children forces in Loyalist positions as Loyalists, the Covenant of Blood, Nightfall and the Barb of Nostramo began to accurately fire Lance strikes on the positions.

Enraged with the losses he was taking at the hands of the Night Lords, Fulgrim ordered the Emperors Children to move into the Night Lords landing zones and decimate any who fired upon them. As the Emperors Children advanced into the fringe elements of the city blocks, they came under immense fire from Volkite equipped squads of Night Lords. Fulgrim ordered the halt of the Emperors Children and attempted to raise Sevatar on the vox. Hearing nothing but screams and scrap code it became clear that the Night Lords Command could not be raised.

Before Fulgrim could determine if any other options were open to them, the looming darkness of a Coffin ship descended to the southern edge of the city. Hammering into the ground, it threw up an immense bow wave of filth and mud into the air. Realising there was no other option available to him with the landing of the Night Lords supporting Legio, Fulgrim ordered the Emperors Children into the Storm Bird and the deployment of the Librarius to the planet surface.

Order Of Battle:
Emperors Children/Daemons of the Ruinstorm
Emperors Children – Crusade
Daemons of the Ruinstorm – Onslaught

Warlords:

Fulgrim – Child of Terror
Balrog – Loping Charge

Price of Failure:

Fulgrim – 2VP + Warlord = 3VP
Stormbird – 2VP
Anggrath (Arch Daemon) = 2VP

Night Lords/Legio Fureans
Night Lords – Crusade
Legio Fureans – Leviathan

Warlords:

Konrad Curze – No additional trait
Nuncio Mortis – Scoring/Tank Hunter/Monster Hunter

Price of Failure:

Konrad Curze – 2VP + Warlord = 3VP
Nuncio Mortis – 2VP + Warlord = 3VP

Mission – Custom
6 Turn Game
Primary Objectives: War of Lies, Death Toll
Secondary Objectives: Price of Failure. Slay the Warlord

Board Build:
Having recently watched David Braines on the 30K Channel explaining how to build a table to normalise a game where one side could be met with a barrage of fire and be unable to do anything about it, i decided to make use of the Hab Block modular terrain that 4TK Gaming in Colchester has in excess in store.

First off I constructed several large skyscrapers out of the modular terrain to virtually screen off the deployment zones from each other, whilst offering several small avenues of approach and one large winding central approach.

The middle of the board effectively was to contain 3 of the 5 objectives, so needed cover and a way to ensure the Warlord could not claim more than one at a time or have freedom of movement. To achieve this, screening was applied to the left of the board by creating a series of skyscrapers with interspersed lower structures. Finally, smaller structures and several trees were placed down to break up the terrain.

For the outer edges, to simulate ongoing warfare bombed out buildings and wrecked imperial vehicles were added. Several of these would end up being objectives.

The overall effect is two screened deployment areas, with a T-Shaped roadway to allow movement of large amounts of forces/landing of Lords of War centrally, with alleys and approaches intertwining the cover on the board.

It’s not a patch on what 30K Channel does, but it certainly was effective!

Lists:

Night Lords 101st Company + Legio Fureans 
Legiones Astartes

Sevatar 175

Moritat – Malithos Kruvok: artificer armour; 2 × volkite serpenta; melta bombs; refractor field; Trophies of Judgement; jump pack 155

Flaymaster Mawdrym Llansahai 135

First Claw (10 Terror Squad Executioners): Headsman (artificer armour; power fist; volkite charger; melta bombs); 9 Terror Squad Executioners; 9 × volkite charger 280

Second Claw (10 Terror Squad Executioners): Headsman (artificer armour; power fist; volkite charger; melta bombs); 9 Terror Squad Executioners; 9 × volkite charger 280

Third Claw (10 Terror Squad Executioners): Headsman (artificer armour; power fist; volkite charger; melta bombs); 9 Terror Squad Executioners; 9 × volkite charger 280

Fourth Claw (10 Terror Squad Executioners): Headsman (artificer armour; power fist; volkite charger; melta bombs); 9 Terror Squad Executioners; 9 × volkite charger 280

10 Destroyers: Destroyer Sergeant (artificer armour); 9 Destroyers; 2 × missile launcher and suspensor web; melta bombs; jump packs 315

Atramentar (10 Terminators): Terminator Sergeant (volkite charger; power fist; grenade harness); 9 Terminators; 9 × volkite chargers; 9 × power weapon 410
• Spartan Assault Tank: auxiliary drive; armoured ceramite; flare shield; dozer blade 385

12 Night Raptors: Huntmaster (artificer armour; power weapon; melta bombs); 11 Night Raptors; 11 × power weapon; 2 × meltagun 455

Leviathan Pattern Siege Dreadnought Talon
• Leviathan Pattern Siege Dreadnought: Leviathan storm cannon; cyclonic melta lance; armoured ceramite; phosphex discharger 335
• Leviathan Pattern Siege Dreadnought: Leviathan storm cannon; cyclonic melta lance; armoured ceramite; phosphex discharger 335
• Leviathan Pattern Siege Dreadnought: Leviathan storm cannon; cyclonic melta lance; armoured ceramite 320

Konrad Curze 435

Mars Warlord Battle Titan: arm-mounted Arioch Titan power claw (Vulcan mega-bolter); 2 carapace-mounted Reaver laser blasters 2,925

7,500 points

Emperors Children/Daemons of the Ruinstorm:

Champion: artificer armour; paragon blade; melta bombs; refractor field; sonic shrieker 135

Chaplain: artificer armour; power fist; refractor field; sonic shrieker 130

10 Tactical Space Marines: Tactical Sergeant (power fist); 9 Tactical Space Marines 140
• Rhino: pintle-mounted multi-melta 50

10 Tactical Space Marines: Tactical Sergeant (power fist); 9 Tactical Space Marines 140
• Rhino: pintle-mounted multi-melta 50

10 Tactical Space Marines: Tactical Sergeant (power fist); 9 Tactical Space Marines 140
• Rhino: pintle-mounted multi-melta 50

10 Palatine Warriors: Palatine Prefector (Phoenix power spear; melta bombs); 9 Palatine Warriors; artificer armour; 5 × power sword; 4 × Phoenix power spear; sonic shriekers 395

10 Phoenix Terminators: Phoenix Champion; 9 Phoenix Terminators; sonic shriekers 480

Contemptor Dreadnought Talon
• Contemptor Dreadnought: Dreadnought close combat weapon (meltagun); Dreadnought close combat weapon (meltagun) 205
• Contemptor Dreadnought: Dreadnought close combat weapon (meltagun); Dreadnought close combat weapon (meltagun) 205

Javelin Attack Speeder Squadron
• Javelin Attack Speeder: pintle-mounted multi-melta; hull-mounted twin-linked lascannon; hunter-killer missiles 80
• Javelin Attack Speeder: pintle-mounted multi-melta; hull-mounted twin-linked lascannon; hunter-killer missiles 80

Spartan Assault Tank: auxiliary drive; armoured ceramite; flare shield 380

Sokar Pattern Stormbird: Orbital Strikes 1,000
Fulgrim the Illuminator 380

Ruinstorm Daemon Lord with Wings: Lord of Sorcery (Mastery Level 4); Emanations of Horror (Flensing Talons); Emanations of Horror (Rift Barb); Emanations of Horror (Warpscaled Hide) 340

Ruinstorm Daemon Chosen: Lord of Sorcery (Mastery Level 2); Emanations of Horror (Crushing Claws); Emanations of Horror (Quicksilver Speed); Emanations of Horror (Flensing Talons) 110

Ruinstorm Daemon Chosen: Lord of Sorcery (Mastery Level 2); Emanations of Horror (Crushing Claws); Emanations of Horror (Quicksilver Speed); Emanations of Horror (Flensing Talons) 110

15 Ruinstorm Lesser Daemons: Emanations of Horror (Crushing Claws); Emanations of Horror (Flensing Talon); Emanations of Horror (Quicksilver Speed) 345

15 Ruinstorm Lesser Daemons: Emanations of Horror (Crushing Claws); Emanations of Horror (Flensing Talon); Emanations of Horror (Quicksilver Speed) 345

15 Ruinstorm Lesser Daemons: Emanations of Horror (Crushing Claws); Emanations of Horror (Flensing Talon); Emanations of Horror (Quicksilver Speed) 345

Ruinstorm Daemon Shrike: Emanations of Horror (Rift Barb); Emanations of Horror (Warpscaled Hide) 185

Ruinstorm Daemon Shrike: Emanations of Horror (Rift Barb); Emanations of Horror (Warpscaled Hide) 185

Ruinstorm Arch-Daemon: Arch-Daemon Emanation (Lord of Chaos); Arch-Daemon Emanation (Warp-Forged Plate); Arch-Daemon Emanation (Beyond Death); Flying Gargantuan Creature (Character) 850

Ally detachment

Lord Commander Eidolon 185

20 Assault Space Marines: Assault Sergeant (artificer armour; pair of lightning claws); 19 Assault Space Marines; 2 × power weapon; 2 × plasma pistol; combat shields 445

Turn Summary:

Deployment

Night Lords deployed first with the Librarius from the Emperors Children opening up warp rifts in three locations, one by the crashed Valkyrie off to the left, one in the centre and one in the Night Lords deployment Zone. Terror squad Claws then infiltrated close to the objectives.

Turn One: A Towering Monstrosity Landed

With a blare of the Warhorn, Nuncio Mortis began turn 1. Moving 12″ forward into the city outskirts opened up two targets to its bristling weapons – the Emperors Children Spartan and a Rhino. These received a withering barrage of template fire and even with scattering off a few shots the Spartan was outright destroyed and the Rhino reduced to 1 wound.

The Night Lords element of Night Raptors and a Leviathan talon, led by Curze all ran forward. This meant that at the end of Turn 1, the Night Lords had all of the Objectives within sight as the four claws of Terror Squads had infiltrated close in, with support close in and the Emperors Children had lost a key asset from their armoured element with another critically wounded.

The Emperors Children retaliated by spawning daemons from the warp rifts and the Javelin Land Speeders began their attack on the Warlord Titans voids by loosing all of their Hunter Killer Missiles – dropping it down to two void shields.

The Daemons of the Ruinstorm emerged from the warp rifts on reserve rolls, seeing the Giant Bloodthirster arch daemon and the Warlord Balrog emerge near the Valkyrie, whilst several smaller daemons emerged in the Night Lords deployment zone.

Turn 2: No Reserves, The Forces Clash
The Night Lords turn 2 saw the Warlord move forwards again and reigniting several of its void shields, but as the city closed in around it, its shooting began to degrade. The Belicosa Volcano cannon was utterly wasted, as were the Laser Blasters and Arioch Power Claws Gatling Cannon.  A Daemon Prince was grounded in the Night Lords deployment zone, but the larger threat near the Valkyrie crash site, Anggrath was unscathed by the Spartan Assault tanks shooting. Rerolling of the daemons failed invulnerable saves when they are within 6″ of the rifts emerged as the largest issue for the Night Lords to have to deal with.

Meanwhile, the advance on the right flank continued with Curze pushing the Leviathans into a run.

The Emperors children rolled on their reserves and brought on their Sokar Pattern Storm Bird. This then brought down all the void shields on the Warlord titan. Both Balrog and Anggrath landed in preparation for the next turn, attacking the Night Lords on the left flank. Finally, the Emperors Children attempted to D-Template Konrad Curze, but only managed to kill 2 Night Raptors.

Turn 3: The Losses Begin
The Night Lords lost the Leviathan on the left flank to Anggrath early on, doing no damage back to him in the process and the Terror squad pulled back towards the Contemptors that had outflanked in the previous turn with the aim of melta bombing it – getting the charge on it, but failing to detonate. As the turn drew to an end for the Night Lords the Warlord targetted the buildings obscuring Balrog and Anggrath and with a prayer said to the machine spirit of the weapons, the templates were placed.
In the end, Balrog lost 3w and Anggrath was reduced to 2W with a precision scatter from the Belicosa blowing a hole through the skyscraper and injuring him.

In response, the Emperors Children wiped the Terror squad from the left flank with their Contemptors, whilst the daemons that had emerged from the warp rift in the deployment zone of the Night Lords effectively wiped the Terror Squad from the Leman Russ Objective the other side of the building from Anggrath. To make matters worse for the Night Lords, Anggrath Stomped the Spartan down to 2HP – forcing a rethink on the strategy for the left flank as the losses mounted and the Night Lords found themselves encircled.

Turn 4: Death is nothing compared to vindication
The Night Lords Spartan disgorged its contents of Sevatar, the Atramentar and Flaymaster Mawdrym and the Legion Destroyers deep strike landed further out than anticipated on the left flank. Following this confusion, the Destroyers fired their toughness reducing weapons after the Atramentar had fired their Volkite, meaning there was no benefit to be had in the shooting phase. The Atramentar still brought down the Daemon Prince, but at a higher cost that should have occurred. Finally, the Night Lords killed Anggrath as the Spartan made a final barrage of twin-linked las fire into him at point-blank range.

The Emperors Children Storm Bird disgorged its army sized contents and Eidolon deep struck well into the face of the Night Lords at the right flank objectives of the Church and Manticore. With the Daemons of the Ruinstorm surging towards the Atramentar, embattled Terror Squad Claws and the Emperors Children, led by Fulgrim now charging into Curze and his Night Raptors and Leviathan supports, the game turned nasty.

The Atramentar died to the barrage of wounds that flooded in from the single squad of lesser daemons, supported by a character. The Terror Squad Claw in the centre died shortly after to the second squad of lesser daemons and the third terror squad found itself, along with some more raptors at greatly reduced numbers due to the sudden influx of fire.

The Warlord suffered its first chassis damage of the game, 2HP stripped from the 30 it possessed. Fulgrim, charging Curze and the Night Raptors with his Phoenix Guard stripped away Curze’s protection before Konrad Curze died himself.

One turn – 1500pts of Night Lords were wiped off the board. Curze threw 3 Widowmakers and 6 attacks. He didn’t wound with any. This left the Night Lords with a Legion Destroyer Squad and Moritat Malithos Kruvok, and two Leviathan Dreadnoughts, one of which was immobilized. The Warlord stood silently above the battlefield.

Turn 5: Difficult Decisions
The game felt like it was over. The Night Lords had their Titan, but no legionary scoring units and a single squad of Destroyers. After a long tactical pause, the Night Lords began their next moves. The spite of the Night Lords was flowing in vicious torrents. The Legion Destroyer squad and the Moritat Malithos Kruvok unleashed directed and withering fire towards the Daemon Warlord – killing him outright with Chainfire. Sevatar swung viciously with his Nostraman Chainglaive and felled a few lesser daemons before he too was brought down, leaving Flaymaster Mawdrym Llanshai to deal with the horde.

Nuncio Mortis reignited 3 void shields and sounded its warhorn and targetted the freshly disembarked and victorious Emperors Children. Eidolons assault squad died in a furious fusillade of carapace weapon fire. Not trusting the scatter, Nuncio Mortis targetted to the south of Fulgrim, only to score a direct hit on both the Storm Bird and the Phoenix Guard with the Apocalyptic template – the Storm bird dropped to 7HP in an instant, the Phoenix Guard were all but wiped clean, with the few remaining rising from the fire and ash to stand by their Primarch.

The Daemons of the Ruinstorm retaliated by charging a Daemon Prince into combat against the Night Lords Spartan, killing it, whilst the remaining Emperors Children Contemptor dreadnought on the left flank charged into the Legion Destroyer Squad. After taking heavy casualties, the remaining 3 Destroyers and the Moritat clamped melta bombs to it, coring it through, however, they lost combat and failed their morale, causing them to fallback, adding +1 for Nostraman Blood.

Turn 6: Damage Limitation
With Nuncio Mortis reigniting voids again, the Warlord moved forwards through cover to secure the central objective point. once there, it rotated and used one of its carapace weapons to blast an Emperors Children Tactical Squad and their Rhino off the board, with the other whittling down an invuln rerolling lesser daemons squad on the objective, whilst the Belicosa took care of 2 more HP on the Storm Bird.

With the Legion Destroyers rallying but unable to do anything this turn and the discharge of Nuncio Mortis’ primary weapons, this left the 6″ charge to the hovering Storm Bird. Making the charge, Nuncio Mortis grabbed the Storm Bird in its Arioch Power Claw and broke its back, leaving it a wreck and out of the game. Nuncio Mortis then Stomped the Rhino and Tactical Squad on the Manticore objective directly in front of it.

The Emperors Children in the meantime had moved their second Rhino full of Tactical Marines from behind the skyscrapers and secured the Manticore objective point amongst the bodies of their dead comrades.

With no further turns remaining the game ended with an Emperors Children Contemptor charging into and killing the Legion Destroyers, leaving only two models on the board under Night Lords command:

Nuncio Mortis – with 2HP down
Moritat Malithos Kruvok with 1W remaining.

James had scored all of the objective points, except for the central Emperor Statue objective, which Nuncio Mortis claimed using its traits.

Accrued Points and War of Lies
The Night Lords scored the following:

Death Toll: 16VP
Warlord Kills: 1VP
LoW Kills: 2VP

Objectives: 1x D3 = 1VP

Total = 20VP 

The Emperors Children scored the following:

Death Toll: 18VP
Warlord Kills: 1VP
LoW Kills: 2VP

Objectives: 4x D3 rolls = 1x -D3 VP, 2x 0VP, 1x 1VP  = -2VP

Total = 19VP
This translates into a Night Lords victory by 3VP difference.

Comments:

As with every Horus Heresy game I’ve played recently, this one was outstanding. As James agrees, it was immersive, thematic and vicious at every step. 15,000pts took a total of 8hrs to play – so that immediately dispels the oft mentioned words of “Heresy takes ages to play”.

Even though the Warlord Titan is not normally available in games of Horus Heresy under 12,000pts per side due to the 25% rule, the terrain and night fighting (inadvertently in this case) helped the Emperors Children and Daemons of the Ruinstorm. The Apocalyptic pie plate is a scary template, but in truth, it is difficult to use effectively when the game turns advance and the risk of fratricide increases. I think I’ll be getting a Sunfury Plasma Annihilator though – as the Belicosa feels somewhat crazy to wield – it deleted around 600pts in a single turn and destroyed a 370pts Spartan on turn 1. Rhinos appeared to weather the hits better!

The Daemons of the Ruinstorm…. well, quite frankly I now see why people say they’re broken. Discussing after the game we both said about how a Daemons player can effectively gain total board control by effectively placing their warp rifts and using the rerolling invulnerable saves bubble that they provide.

In combat, even though a unit of lesser daemons costs 345pts, being on the receiving end of 60 attacks is horrific. Feel No Pain rolls is probably the only reason the Atramentar Legion Terminators survived the initial barrage, but when the second group charged in, it was simply too much for even the 4++/6+++ to deal with. The combination of shred and rending really signs off the fact that they’re probably the most points efficient unit in Heresy. I’d like to see these against a set of Firedrakes, which is likely to happen shortly.

The Storm Bird is a beast. Disgorging that many units in a single turn is vicious, especially when combined with Assault vehicle rules. 8 Las cannons, even if they are on ball mounts are very good and the D weapon discharging every turn certainly was effective enough against what it targetted. I do feel that it deserves a points drop, similar to what the Thunderhawk requires to become a more common sight in the game. As a model, it’s glorious.

Fulgrims child of terror rule enabling himself and an attached unit to reroll failed to wound rolls of 1 in concert with his initiative and AP2 is horrific. Combining that with the Phoenix Guard led to a sizable wound roll that couldn’t have been saved on a 3++, let alone a 4++ from Curze. It was entirely demoralising to be on the end of that. Effectively it chewed through a 435pts Primarch and a 395pts Night Raptor squad.

James stated that his unit of the match was his Rhinos and I agree. They provided significant cover for the troops embarked within and because they were easier to hide than the Spartan, suffered less at the hands of the Warlord Titan.

My unit of the match was the Moritat attached to the Legion Destroyers. He clawed back VP for me when my world had ended. He went into the game un-named, but has since been titled Malithos Kruvok and shall be known in future games as such!

Thanks, Contacts & Look Forward:

I’d like to thank James for coming and playing – its always a pleasure! You can see more of James’ armies on Instagram @WrightsAdventurersGuild and I’m sure he will be able to answer any questions about his army that readers might have.

If you’d like to see more of the Night Lords, my Instagram is @havoc856 and also has pictures of the Legio Fureans Maniple.

I’d also like to thank 4TK Gaming for hosting us and letting us rip with the Hab Block Terrain that they have in store – truly is one of the best places I’ve been to both buy and play, hence why i still class it as my FLGS and drive to play there, despite it being 200 miles away from me now!

Thank you for taking the time to read this blog post and look forward to the next Horus Heresy blog post, which will be regarding my appearance on the 30K Channel on 7th September. Following that, we have another massive Heresy game being planned to take place!

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