Play Report: Death Guard vs. Blood Angels vs Imperial Guard
by Ramanan Sivaranjan on January 20, 2018
My wife’s friend Devlin has been collecting and painting Warhammer miniatures for ages. So naturally we had to meet up to play a game. I let him know I could field just shy of a 1000 points of Death Guard (by using everything I own), and he made two possible armies to face me out of the models in his collection: one of Imperial Guards, one of Blood Angels. Evan let me know he could meet up as well, bringing as many Imperial Guard units as he had kit-bashed and painted thus far. This worked out neatly: Devlin wanted to play using his Blood Angels, so Evan could pad out his army with the extra units Devlin brought with him to The Sword and Board.
The last game Evan and I played had about 1000 points of units on the table. With this game we were each fielding 1000 point armies, so we had 3000 points of units in play. It was such a huge jump from what we had been doing thus far.
My army consisted of all my Death Guard units:
- Causarius, Lord of Contagion (Warlord with the Living Plague Warlord Trait)
- Putidus, Malignant Plaguecaster
- The Noxious Blightbringer
- The Tallyman
- 5x Blightlord Terminators
- 7x Plague Marines
- 20x Pox Walkers
- Foetid Bloat-Drone
This was a full battalion, so I got 3 extra command points—which I mostly forgot to use while playing.
We were a bit confused about how a 3 player game would work. The rulebook doesn’t have much to say about how to set up a game with an odd number of players. We decided we would roll the dice each round (after the first) to decide the turn order. Otherwise we left the game more or less as-is. I picked what I thought would be a fun objective: there is one marker; units can pick the marker up and carry it around the board; they drop the marker if they are destroyed, the winner is the person whose unit is holding the marker at the end of the game. I thought this would encourage a free for all where we would end up attacking each other as we fought over the objective. (It didn’t quite work out that way.)
Devlin went first, fanning his troops out towards Evan and I. Devlin Death Company moved towards me and shot up my Malignant Plaguecaster, who managed to survive through some good luck for me and bad luck for Devlin. He moved a big Redemptor towards Evan’s troops and also rolled surprisingly bad, killing a handful of units. A unit of his Death Company dropped into the battlefield as close as they could get to the objective, which was set up on top of a floating island. The island wasn’t big enough for another unit to do the same thing, so he took control of the objective (more or less) to start.
I started moving my Death Guard towards the warp gate that would take them up to the objective—the trip would take my slow moving troops several rounds. I pulled one group of pox walkers away from the mass, sending them towards Devlin’s approaching Death Company and my Plaguecaster. With no other pyskers on the board my Plaguecaster could use his abilities without being contested. I made quick work of a few of Devilin’s space marines this way.
Evan began his turn by teaching us the true power of tanks. The punisher canon on one of the Lemun Russ’s decimated a Death Company unit advancing towards him. A posse of guard with anti-tank guns then proceeded to make short work of the Redemptor, leaving it heavily damaged with two wounds.
Devlin was worried he’d be tabled before he got to deep strike more units onto the board, but luckily rolled high and got to go first when we began our second round. (It probably took us over an hour to get to this point!) He deployed his remaining units onto the board—a Sanguinary Guard and The Sanguinor—behind my line of Death Guard. No one wanted to fuss with the tanks. He killed my Plaguecaster (damn it!), most of the unit of Pox Walkers who were nearby, and a few Plague Marines, but I still felt like I was in good shape over all.
On my turn I teleported in my Blightord Terminators and started my retaliation, wearing Devlin down more. I forgot that I also had a Lord of Contagion—the warlord of my army!—that I could have also teleported in at this time. I moved it closer to the table so that I wouldn’t forget it next time, and then promptly forgot about it again.
Evan advanced his troops and took out more of Devlin’s army with his tanks and heavily armed guardsmen. My Bloatdrone took another barrage of fire and was reduced to 4 wounds. Evan also managed to drop a unit near the objective as Devlin had lost the troops that were up there to my army.
We started our third round and tried to race through it quickly to see where things would go: Evan needed to run. By this point we’d been playing for at least 3 hours!
My terminators moved up on to the floating island and killed Evan’s guard, putting them closest to the objective. Devlin’s remaining units were tied up fighting the remainder of my army, and it would be impossible for them to make it up to the objective even if they could miraculously kill everything in their path. Evan’s army was still quite healthy, but he was also too far from the objective now that he had no more troops he could grav-chute in. So like the last game, I won more or less by default.
In hindsight we might have wanted to do turn sequence differently, perhaps some scheme where we alternated activating individual units. A three way game is quite odd: Evan described it like playing a game while also watching a game. The gaps between your turns can be quite long. I’m hoping we can all get together again.
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