Author Topic: Illustrated Battle Rep from A3 Campaign  (Read 2118 times)

Offline Padre

  • Posts: 3396
Illustrated Battle Rep from A3 Campaign
« on: November 02, 2008, 08:44:43 AM »
Rembrandt's First Battle

The scouts came rushing back, frantic, and begged an audience with Rembrandt. What they had to say would not please him, but they had to report it immediately as otherwise the whole enterprise could be ruined before it had even begun.

“I beg your leave, captain sir, but you must hear us, and now” shouted the foremost man. “There’s enemies approaching - monstrous, unholy creatures.”

Rembrandt van Haagen burst out of the pavilion (so recently erected it was still incomplete).

“What say you?” he demanded.

“Demons, sir captain, demons of chaos all bloodied and foul,” the man answered, pointing over his shoulder at the dunes. “Just beyond that ridge, and coming this way. An army of them, moving deathly quiet and terrifying to behold. If I hadn’t seen ‘em with me own eyes then I wouldn’t have believed …”

Rembrandt had stopped listening and begun shouting for his officers.

Blood and thunder, he thought, but here is a test indeed. Only half of his force had disembarked, and here the war was coming to him right now. There were no horses either, for the fluyts carrying them were lost at sea and yet to rejoin the fleet.

“To arms,” he cried, “all you you. And make haste. Ready every man upon the shore, and send signals for the rest to disembark as soon as the boats get back to the ships.”

He turned to the famous Tilean officer by his side,

“Master Ricco, let us see how fast your men can earn their gold. Muster them immediately, array them for war." He now addressed the other officers rushing up to him, "And the rest of you, all of you, put your companies into order with all haste.”

As the officers turned to leave, Rembrandt's old friend Roderick, the ancient soldier who had served his father and his grandfather, finally came. As field marshall, it was his job to array the army into a battle line. Rembrandt looked at him stoically, and spoke more quietly,

“Roderick, make a line of them as quick as you can. Nothing fancy, mind, there’s no time for that. I shall go see where and what we are to fight.”

With that Rembrandt, silently cursing the masters of the lost ships with the war horses, ran through the sand. Adding to his list of complaints he now cursed the weight of his armour and the softness of the ground underfoot.

Upon cresting the nearest dune, he saw open ground between him and the enemy. Sand and more sand, as if the beach had refused to yield to firmer ground, broken only by a copse of greenery around a pool of water and what looked like some ruins.

Beyond this he espied the foe – they were so close he needed no perspective glass. The scouting seamen were right, it was an army of monsters plucked from a nightmare and thrown into the mortal world. The bright sun and clear blue sky lit them up with terrible clarity.

In their midst was a monstrous, giant demon - a huge, bloated mass of rotting flesh. Upon his right there were two huge regiments of ferocious, blood coloured devils, and to his left two more companies of hideously pink succubi. Lurking behind were some other foul creatures that Rembrandt could not bring himself to scrutinise.

Besides, he hadn’t time. He turned to see his bodyguards rushing up from behind, every one of their faces angry at his dash forward. But he knew they would not mention it.

“Right then, fellows, it’s back we go!” he commanded them, sounding almost cheerful.

Let them think I am not afraid, he thought. Let them see me as keen, busy, brave – but not scared.

As he ran on they spun around and chased after him again.

Already old Roderick had begun to ready a line for battle. Luckily, the artillery had been dragged forward to the dunes over an hour ago, so that it only had to be pulled up and over them to the other side, allowing the regiments marching from the beach to join them as one line in time to present a unified front to the enemy.

Two cannons made up the far left wing, with a company of marine sharp shooters utilising swivel guns between them (‘murderers’ the sailors liked to call them). The two wizards, but apprentices truthfully, stood near the guns, each clutching several rolls of scrolls. In the centre were the four main regiments – 30 swordsmen, 25 of Ricco’s pikemen, the halberdiers and the free company of seamen. Two detachments of handgunners stood ahead of this mass of foot soldiers. No doubt Roderick thought that a hail or two of lead might soften even demons up!

To the right of the centre was the helblaster. Rembrandt almost laughed at the thought this provoked: let it blast them back to whatever hell they came from.

The far right, where Roderick would surely have preferred to put several bodies of horse soldiers, stood only two companies of marines. First the marine ‘Blades’, then finally the marine Rangers. It wasn’t much, but if anyone could hold their own against a monstrous foe, Rembrandt believed the leather skinned hard-men in the company of Rangers could do it.

Rembrandt ran to join the halberdiers, who cheered him heartily as he arrived. They were in good spirits, and well they might be, pondered the young captain, for they had yet to see clearly what they were about to fight.

The two wizards, sensing that the enemies magic was not utterly overwhelming, decided as one that they would not merely nurse their scrolls and try to deflect the power of the demons’ magic, but that they would employ some offensive magic of their own. They were nimble eyed enough to see also that then enemy had no missile weapons. Thus they moved ahead of the line in order that their fire spells might reach the foe.

Suddenly, as if to announce that the battle had truly begun, the two cannons opened up at the mighty, green demon in the midst of the horde. Both balls hit, but one seemed to pass right through the demon. (5 wounds from the unsaved one!)

Visibly and audibly shocked by the sight of the enemy, the whole rear line moved backwards a few paces – all four regiments. Rembrandt thought it best not to chide them, but instead to encourage them with the pretence that he had ordered it.

“Aye,” he cried. “That’s better – like one body. Watch your dressings, stand straight in your ranks and files. Steady … steady.”

Magical force began to emanate from the hellish legion, as every creature amongst them advanced as fast as they could. All moved quicker than men could do, and all the men in the front lines noticed that fact. Throats tightened, and nervous hands clutched tighter at the hafts of their weapons.

When the artillery fired a second time their easy skill from years of experience was clear. Once again the huge demon’s flesh swallowed two more cannon balls. But this time, as the monster had adjusted to their nature, both passed through him – the damage they did only visible for a brief moment before the beast’s flesh knitted itself back together and left nought but another scar to add to the thousands already there. Even the Helblaster, adding a further dozen 1 lb shots to the ‘damage’, seemed to do no extra harm. Every artillery man in the line shuddered, and they glanced as if to say “Can this enemy even be killed?”

On the far right wing, the Rangers fired bravely at the two fiends of Slaanesh, slaying one. But the survivor, a twisted beast bearing horns, claws, talons and a stinging tail, came on and smashed into them. Rembrandt’s confidence in the Rangers proved well founded. They would fight on for some time, holding this beast in place. They would wound it, but the beast refused to yield it’s grip on the mortal realm. Two by two it slayed them, slowly grinding them down.

In the centre, unobscured by a small dune as were the foul daemonettes of Slaanesh advancing to their left, the two regiments of Khornate demons (Bloodletters to give them the name a scholarly demonologist would accord them) advanced straight at the Empire’s centre. 

More magic came from the demons, and once more the two wizards used their prepared scrolls to disperse the arcane winds that carried it. One force the wizards could not hope to stop, however, was the sheer terror the sight of such monstrosities caused in men. As the great Demon of Nurgle approached ever closer, the free-company of seamen lost their nerve. Once one of them broke and ran, the others tumbled after him. Roderick’s line now had a hole in it, towards which the giant demon shambled on, cackling and gurgling horrendously as it did so.

Suddenly some demonic magic did break through the wizards' defences – a strange lilting melody was heard, otherworldly, alluring, fascinating. One of the handgunner detachments, unable to get the sound out of their heads, suddenly gave up re-loading their pieces and charged involuntarily at the source of the sound.

Rembrandt could not believe what he saw! The handgunners were surely doomed, and would have contributed much more effectively had they had the sense to fire instead of running at the foe. Hoping to put things right, he led his Halberdiers into the gap, ready to tackle the demons as they surely broke through the thin line of handgunners.

On the left flank the artillerymen and sharpshooters were re-loading as fast as they could, for all of them knew that if they did not fire soon – before the melee began in the centre – then their effective contribution to this battle would be over.

Amongst the sharpshooters, an unusual event had occurred. It would have elicited laughs had it happened at any other time, but just now no one found it funny. The gunner in command of the company, Leo, who had never let his servant orc (Gublin) fire the swivel, suddenly decided to give Gublin a chance.

“Go on then, if you must,” he said with a sigh, “you go to the front and have a go.”

As he stepped back to the rear, Leo wondered if having to cut through Gublin first might slow the enemy down long enough for him to get away.

The marine blades took advantage of their loose formation to begin firing a series of pistol shots into the pink daemonettes near them. Although one cannon misfired, the other thundered yet again, hurling iron shot into the giant demon. But, it seemed, nothing would harm it. The Helblaster put another cloud of iron shot into the same creature, and though this time the damage could clearly be seen, the creature again barely flinched.

Rembrandt gritted his teeth, for he knew what was about to come. He could sense the  fear of the men around him, it was tangible, and growing. The mighty demon before them, that could shrug off cannon balls as if they were nothing more than snowballs, whose stinking flesh crawled with maggots the size of leeches, and whose wounds seeped pus in bubbling torrents, turned it’s attention upon them. And with a speed that seemed impossible in a creature so bloated, it charged at them.

None could stand against him, and even Rembrandt wasn’t sure he wanted to. The entire regiment turned and fled – not just running, but leaping away. And as they hurled themselves desperately towards the sea, the demon tore through them, hacking and slashing, tearing and ripping, until they were scattered and utterly routed. Rembrandt lay a moment or two amongst them, winded by the blow his had taken, then he crawled (though he would never admit this to anyone) off the field. He could not find the strength to stand – and knew not whether it was some magic being used against him or if it was his own shortcomings as a soldier. He was, however, sobbing.

By their side, Ricco’s men shuddered, but their leader looked upon them with his steely eyes, and (believe it or not) his men thought they might well be more afraid of his anger than the beasts. The pike regiment stood its ground.

The daemonettes meanwhile had overrun the Helblaster and crashed into the fleeing free company, destroying any hope of cohesion amongst the sailors. They too, what few survived, ran, stumbled or crawled towards the shoreline.

In a desperate attempt to counter attack before all was lost, the pike and the swordsmen both simultaneously charged into the central regiment of Bloodletters. Surely sheer weight of numbers would prevail, especially as they had the magical power of the Griffon standard to lend weight to their assault. But would they win the combat quick enough – for if they took too long about it they would certainly be flanked by the victorious enemies to their rear.

The fight was hard, and sure enough the red-skinned demons were felled – even the Herald of Khorne would succumb to the instability caused by the Empire men’s numbers. But it was not quick enough. The great demon of Nurgle and the almost wholly intact regiment of Daemonettes hurled themselves into the side and rear of the swordsmen and the pikemen.

Neither regiment had time to turn and face this fresh onslaught. Ricco’s now leaderless men (for he had fallen in their first fight) could not bring their pikes to bear properly as the enemy smashed into them, and the swordsmen saw their army standard bearer flee to the rear rank a second time to avoid a challenge! Both regiments broke and ran.

The battle was all but ended. The sharpshooters had left the field in fear for their lives. A brave cannon pointlessly hurled more cannons balls through the demon, until they had to accept that their mortal weapons, even the mighty cannon, were insufficient to harm the creature. The Blades had cut down umpteen Daemonettes on the right flank, but it did not save them, for the succubi eventually reached them and tore them apart. Even the brave Rangers had finally succumbed to the Fiend of Slaanesh, which subsequently spent its time lurching around the field looking for an opportunity. It found just such a thing in the lone surviving wizard, attacking and killing the young woman with barely any effort.

The swordsmen and pike did actually rally as darkness fell. Ricco’s warriors, however, broke completely and permanently, however, when another assault came at them. The swordsmen beat a fighting retreat to the boats upon the shore, there to meet with their bruised and dazed commander.

Rembrandt said nothing as his soldiers rowed him back to the safety of the ships.

From the beach came a raucous racket, an eerie choir of siren voices combined with the guttural war-cries of Khorne’s sons. To drown out the sound (and keep the men aboard the ships sane) the gunners fired salvo after salvo, half at the shore, half towards the sea. For once, the men crowded aboard the vessels took solace from the ringing in their ears – it masked the sounds of hell drifting from the shore.

(Solid victory to the demons, 929 lead in a 2250 point game)
« Last Edit: November 02, 2008, 04:33:49 PM by Padre »
Photobucket has now re-destroyed my pictures, so the first half of my collected works thread is no longer working again. To see my website version of the campaign thread, with fully functioning pictures, please go to https://bigsmallworlds.com/

Re: Illustrated Battle Rep from A3 Campaign
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2008, 02:10:39 PM »
  Nice battle man.  I love that daemon force. 
Stats this year

W6 L2 D2

W1 L3 D0

W3 L1 D0

W4 L0 D0

Offline Brionne

  • Posts: 574
  • Your Resident Knight.
Re: Illustrated Battle Rep from A3 Campaign
« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2008, 02:22:24 PM »
As always Padre, very good report. Loved the battle and the "in-character" report, well done. Hard to tell what you could have done to prevent the loss - the nurgle deamon should have died in turn two. Bad luck on the rolls?
Rufas the Eccentric: "Dendo is in Delaware because of their relaxed laws concerning speedos in public places."
Notts: "i'd rather get raped by an angry bear than try, or face this list."

Offline Padre

  • Posts: 3396
Re: Illustrated Battle Rep from A3 Campaign
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2008, 02:36:09 PM »
It was his good luck during rolling, not my bad luck. The beast is T6, W10 with armour, ward and regen' rolls. I hit him 6 times with cannons, getting only the first shot's 5W and a later shot's 1W through. I threw handgunnners' bullets at him, 6 fireballs, and the Hochland rifles tried twice as a team. I even hit him twice (2 barrels then 3 barrels) with the Helblaster - and the second time I think 8 hits got through for him to save. All that and I only got one more wound.

He ended the game on 3 wounds! It could have been a draw (best I seem ever to manage vs demons) if I could have taken him down and then fired upon the rest of his force! Oh, and his terror wouldn't have broken my 25 strong free company either.

Very good fun though. My fault for making a completely 'fluff' force which fitted the Empire troops having just landed only part of their force and having to use seamen to fight also.

Later I'll hurt myself with the fluff of recruiting local levies and such. But it's fun.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2008, 04:32:08 PM by Padre »
Photobucket has now re-destroyed my pictures, so the first half of my collected works thread is no longer working again. To see my website version of the campaign thread, with fully functioning pictures, please go to https://bigsmallworlds.com/

Offline neverness

  • Posts: 544
Re: Illustrated Battle Rep from A3 Campaign
« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2008, 02:44:54 PM »
Very nice! I love those Foundry Pirates! it's nice to see someone using them!

Offline Kriegspiel

  • Posts: 149
Re: Illustrated Battle Rep from A3 Campaign
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2008, 04:25:26 PM »
Another excellet report Padre . :eusa_clap:

Look forward to reading more of Rembrandt's adventures .