This battle follows on from the narrative in Celestine and Friends, linked here:
Three younger players turned up to our local shop for a game - as the standby player I offered to join in - 1500 per player. Mission rolled was Eternal War over four objectives, fought longways.
This was my first chance to use Celestine with Deathwatch - unfortunately I had to make up a crummy list with no vehicles (I was in a hurry and couldn't carry any extra stuff) so I was hamstrung by having to take five veteran squads as troops, footslogging down an 8' board. I unsurprisingly offered to hold our objectives while my ally charged ahead with his two bike squads (with Miss C.) and two squads in rhinos. I did have three individual terminators with assault cannon, and he also had a stormraven, in reserve.
The opposition was fielding the eldar triumvirate, with a variety of others as Ynnari, allied with three squads of devastators, tacticals, devastator centurions plus their own stormraven.
She looked up the field. The jokaero had been hard at work with their technical wizardry - their simulator featured a form of immersive ghost-vision - quite appropriate, given the eldar's allegiance. She was now blessed by the presence of Yvraine, the apparent leader of this new force within the xenos society. The lady in question was visible some distance away, with her bodyguard and a seer, giving calm orders. It was a little jarring in some ways to see the alien defended by dozens of men in blue - but it was appropriate in others, she supposed.
However, more pressing was the matter to hand. Her own allies included both the machine men of the Mechanicus Rapid Offensive Unit, Theta Sigma, plus the rather less measured warriors of the White Scars, who were keen to see how their blades would fare against the aliens (and their Ultramarine brethren). The Scars charged toward the enemy, the saint and her escort only just keeping pace. Their entire battle line just burst forward - it was an astonishing display of skilled driving and aggressive speed.
What it wasn't was wise. As they emerged through the trees she could see women in bone-white armour carrying fearsome-looking blades, led by a giant in similar - if highly-stylised - wargear. Many of the guns of the enemy fired upon them, and both her seraphim fell. Then, with remarkable speed the alien women attacked, hacking at the bikers with her. The monstrous leader attacked with such speed and ferocity that she couldn't keep up - and as it leapt into the fray she was hit by a sonic wave that caused her to nearly collapse. Her blade knocked from her grasp, the strange witch-thing relentlessly struck at her. However, faith was her shield, and, only slightly-wounded, she commanded the marines with her fall back. They did so reluctantly, despite the fact that half of them had fallen...
Across the way there had been more losses - bikes and a rhino mainly - although the Theta Sigma personnel were advancing to plug the gaps. She called on her allies to stand fast, and they were invigorated by her faith. Then she left the bikers and took command of a squad that had emerged from the surviving rhino.
In a storm of vengeful fire most of the line opened up on the eldar women, killing all but their fearsome leader and one single warrior. Unwisely the White Scars charged in, most, unsurprisingly, dispatched by the enemy commander - although they did smash down the last of her minions. The last survivor backed off again.
Then, however, a chill ran through the saint's very core. Some... thing terrible emerged from the warp, close enough nearly to touch, a huge - if typically-wiry - eldarin form, seemingly half-male, half-female, surrounded by a whirling maelstrom of small bones and spirit stones. She gritted her teeth and waited for its inevitable attack, only half-noticing the fighting over the way in which another White Scars bike squad was engaged against Yvraine and her escorts.
Half of her allies were gunned down as the two eldar monstrosities prepared for their attack. The thing leaped towards her, weakened as she was by the sonic attack of the other again. It smashed at her, four hammer-blows that would each kill a normal man - well, each kill a mighty space marine - but she fought through the pain. She was heartened to see that not one of the valiant White Scars with her had fallen against the other foe.
Suddenly the mind-impulse link was broken. Captain Ook, the jokaero leader, was screeching and pointing - the ship was making an emergency exit from the warp! She nodded and reached for her blade...
The game ended after turn 2. It turns out that you want to avoid three things in life: starting a 3000 point team game with someone who has to leave in an ninety minute's time, but doesn't mention it until there's only 20 minutes left, playing footslogging Deathwatch fighting longways on an eight-foot table, and letting Jain Zar charge you.
Celestine must have felt pretty hard-done by, getting charged by Zar twice, the second time also having a god of death whaling on her. Having said that, she was still alive at the end of turn 2, which says something about her resilience.
I have to admit that I hadn't noticed Zar - would have urged caution if I had - and I certainly didn't approve of the bikers charging her in the second round. Having said that, I would have preferred it if we hadn't rushed forwards at all, but it seems right for Scars, so I wasn't going to object too much.
Only one of my terminators showed up, shooting a fire prism in the back, and doing two hull points and destroying a weapon (the shuriken cannon he couldn't see rather than the prism cannon, of course). However, my ally's warlord was taken down by Yvraine and the Visarch (it was going well until the eldar were reinforced by a wraithlord, some honour guard and psychic special effects, of which they had bucketloads).
If I'd had time I would have put a Blackstar on the table - I nearly finished it today, but hadn't quite completed basing it.
Overall the scores were 7-8 - two objectives each, plus they had First Blood and one warlord, while my terminator scored Linebreaker. However, it didn't feel like a proper game, being so short. In all I lost four marines and both seraphim, although Celestine was on her last wound at the end of the game. Having said that, they did hammer the Scars pretty badly, destroying their warlord, two bike squads and one and a half tactical squads, whereas the opposition had only lost a farseer, the banshees and a few other models here and there, so it's unlikely future turns would have benefitted us...
Edited by Brother Sefiel, 27 July 2017 - 11:15 PM.