SN Battle Reports are back! This time, a Horus Heresy battle on Achilles 588, starring the Alpha Legion and Imperial Fists.
So here we are! The first Horus Heresy battle report on our awesome and newly revamped site, only for the eyes of our subscribers. And what a treat we have in store for you today, feast your eyes on this fantastic board, setting a perfect atmosphere for a Horus Heresy report. Today we have a special guest, all the way from the UK representing Greetings from the Warp, Ryan Kemp. Bringing with him his astonishingly painted Alpha Legion, he’ll be facing our studio Imperial Fists, making for two amazing armies being represented on the battlefield.
Speaking of the battlefield, seeing as we will be playing on our fortress board, we thought what would be more appropriate than using the Ambush deployment and war of lies mission, having the Fists set up in the center with the XX’s Legion attempting to besiege and infiltrate them. TO BATTLE!
This Battle Report is dedicated to the memory of Alan Bligh, who brought the Horus Heresy out of shadowed myth and made it real for all of us. Be at peace. 1974-2017
Mission: War of Lies
The action on Achilles 588 is but a footnote in the bloody kin-strife that thrice-cursed Horus unleashed on the nascent Imperium, lost in the colossal shadow cast by the events both immediately before and after it. By size, it would rank as entirely unworthy of note or reflection in this most savage age, but its import lies both in its location and timing rather than in the disposition of forces involved.
- Armillus Dynat
- Quad Launcher With Shatter Shells
- 5 Terminators 3 Powerfists, 2 Chainfists, 5 Combi Meltas, Power Dagger on Sgt
- 10 Marines, Extra Combat Blades, Sgt with Powerfist Power Dagger Artificer Armour,
- Rhino with Multimelta and Dozer Blade
- 10 Marines, Sgt with Powerfist Power Dagger Artificer Armour,
- Rhino with Multimelta and Dozer Blade
- Javelin Attack Speeder with Multimelta
- Javelin Attack Speeder with Multimelta
- Whirlwind Scorpios
- Vindicator with Laser Destroyer Array and Dozer blade
- 5 Man Heavy Support Squad Sgt Nuxio Vox and Augury Scanner, 4 Autocannons
Achilles 588 is one of the so-called Jupiter Trojans, a belt of asteroids located 60 degrees trailing of Jupiter’s orbit, Sol system. An unremarkable frozen rock lost amongst its million-strong astronomical brethren within sight of the throneworld. Its strategic significance lay in its use as a communication relay hub by the Praetorians of Terra, the VIIth legion (Imperial Fists) lying as it did at the outer edge of the 3rd defense sphere as ordained by Lord Dorn.
- Legion Destroyer Squad
- Jump Packs, Artificer Armour, Missile Launcher with Suspensor Web, Melta Bomb
- Legion Quad Launcher Support Battery
- Shatter Shells
- Legion Terminator Squad
- 4x Legion Terminators, 4x Power fists
- 15 Marines, Sgt with Powerfist, Artificer Armour
- 15 Marines, Sgt with Power Sword, Artificer Armour,
- Leviathan Siege Dreadnought
- Armoured Ceramite, Cyclonic Melta Lance, Leviathan Storm Cannon, Phosphex Discharger, Twin-linked Volkite Caliver, Twin-linked Volkite Caliver
Its location and function lending the Achilles 588 relay station disproportionate strategic importance within the mutually supporting defense spheres of Sol and therefore warranting its garrisoning a full Veletarius Terrico of the 23rd Saturnine Rams.
Due to the scenario, we gave Steven the first turn as we felt that it made the most sense with him being the defender. He began deploying, making the best use of the fortresses battlements. He also boldly deployed what is supposedly the “heart” of his army, The Leviathan, in his front ranks.
In the shrouded aftermath of the Battle of Pluto, all loyalist forces remained at high alert throughout the solar system, for although the Alpha Legion’s large-scale attempt to prise open the outer defences through guile, subversion and, eventually, shocking force had been thwarted by Lord Dorn and his legion at a high cost, (Addendum: See file 478/55GH.667Rho ref. events on Pluto and its moons) a foe as subtle as the XXth legion was never to be underestimated, even in defeat. Perhaps especially in defeat.
Wow! What a sight! The second fifteen-man Marines squad deploys on the highest level of the fortress, gaining a viewpoint to provide all the covering fire their comrades may need.
The XXth legion was and is known to use an extensive number of human agents as both saboteurs and spies and events had proven that there were hundreds if not thousands of these turncoats abroad in the solar system. Efforts led by the Imperial Fists to run down these Alpha Legion human auxilia were already afoot but the real danger turned out not to be the acts of fifth columnists, but by Legiones Astartes bearing the livery of the XXth legion.
The Deployment phase got Steven thinking plenty as, with his units in the center of the board, Ryan would easily be able to surround him. Not only was he approaching from two sides, but also had a lot of potential outflankers and infiltrators. Sigismund, Stevens warlord, leads his Cataphracti Terminators on the complete opposite flank to the where the Leviathan is positioned. He hopes to form a formidable defense by splitting his two most elite and impactful unite to cover as much space as possible.
Perhaps an overview of the methodology of the Alpha Legion (Addendum: See file 228/20AO.666 ref. XXth Legion tactics) would enlighten the reader of this record but suffice to say that such was the reputation of Alpharius and his genesons that the appearance of mid-sized raiding forces of Astartes throughout the system led many to believe that their apparent defeat at Pluto had merely been a ruse, a cover or guise for the legion to split up and range at will within the outer defences and spread chaos and confusion before the coming storm of the Warmasters wrath.
Finally, the Quad Launcher support battery sets up atop an enclosed battlement. With this overview of Steven’s army, we can really get a feel for how his Fists must feel, knowing the Alpha Legion is approaching but hearing nothing but crackling noises over their comms as their brethren hopelessly attempt to communicate with each other.
Such tactics would be in keeping with past Alpha Legion operations and resonate with the esoteric imagery with which they were at this point increasingly linked; the many-headed hydra whose heads could be severed only for two more to appear in the original’s place, or the serpent whose venom continues its malign work even after the serpent itself was dispatched.
Here they come! The Legion Vindicator Laser Destroyer comes into sight first, setting its sights squarely on the biggest target, the Leviathan.
Whether Pluto was the objective or merely a deception is perhaps a debate for another time. This record focuses on the actions of the Alpha Legion as they ranged seemingly at will within the outer bulwarks of Terras innermost spacial defences; The Kuiper Belt massacres, the bombardment of the Makemake forge thanes, the Eris rebellion and others almost too numerous to count, the Alpha Legion visited ruination and instability into the heart of His realm.
Without any opposing infiltrators, the Alpha Legion units were free to set up sneakily. Most could be placed anywhere as long as they were 18″ away, or 12″ if out of the line of sight. Dynat and his retinue of Cataphracti make use of infiltrating and sneakily make their way forwards.
The attack on the comms relay on Achilles 588 would mark a change in the pattern of strike and fade in which the Imperial Fists had been at a severe disadvantage. The perfectly executed surprise attack executed by a demi-company of XXth Legion legiones Astartes fell not upon the stated garrison of solar auxilia but upon a sizeable detachment of Imperial Fists led in person by first captain Sigismund himself.
That which Steven should fear most enters the battlefield towards what Steven would consider the rear, the Whirlwind Scorpius is now in sight. This nasty piece of work packs a menacing punch with multiple AP3 barrage blasts. Ouch!
Seemingly having learned their enemies ways, the VIIth legion had turned the hunters into the hunted with a masterfully enacted ambush.
One of Ryan’s Rhinos sets up on the other corner. Full of troops, its mission is to quickly deliver them to the enemy.
Fully committed to their attack the Alpha Legion pressed on into the teeth of the Imperial Fists fire, to break off before such a foe at such close quarters would have led to frighteningly high casualties, or perhaps, being so used to dictating the course of events, so sure of their superiority in both intelligence and cunning, the Alpha Legion found themselves bested by the Imperial Fists ruse de guerre and found themselves momentarily robbed of the adaptability and malleability of command that usually served them so well in the prosecution of their wars and their attendant lies.
The second Rhino, along with the auto-cannon support squad set up only 18″ away as they both infiltrated. Sneaky…
Let’s do this! Check out all the action in the whole battle report back at SN Battle reports site!