Thursday, July 23, 2009

Alphe Current

With Oldmere retaken and Merridale in sight once more, General Percival was keen to keep the momentum going in the latest offensive on Alphe. With this in mind he moved the Librian 50th armoured to the North of the settlement while the corridor to Oldmere was still open.

On 2007.009M42 the Librian mechanised infantry of the 122nd regiment began their advance on the city, supported by the tanks of the 50th armoured and several Baneblade heavy tanks. In addition for the first time Librian airborne units were deployed in theatre. These Librian formations were veterans of several campaigns, and soon proved their worth as they advanced on Merridale.

The crucial battle developed around the main bridge over the river Amber which ran to the south of Merridale. Colonel Davidson had made contact with Traitor units of the Catechism to the north of the city, but chose to encircle the settlement. The commander of the Catechism clearly understood the significance of this move, deployed his strongest forces along the river and prepared a counter attack.

The battle became fierce as traitor marines were deployed against the mechanised infantry on a bend on the Amber river at dawn on 2207.009M42. On Davidson's left flank, fast moving Devil Dog flame tanks supporting his mechanised infantry scored successes against traitor Rhinos, while the infantry of the 122nd were involved in heavy fighting against elite marine formations. The 122nd took heavy casualties as the morning rose, the Catechism reinforcing this flank with Obliterator constructions, dreadnoughts and a daemon prince of Nurgle.

In the centre the Librians knew they had to get across the river, where traitor troops had taken up a reverse slope position on the south bank. On Davidson's right the heavy tanks of the 50th armoured, supported by Baneblade super heavy tanks duelled over open boggy ground with Catechism Vindicators.

As the 22nd wore on the Imperium forces achieved good success on the right, destroying the Chaos forces and turning the Catechism flank. In the centre the forces of Chaos were also buckling, and although one Baneblade was destroyed on the right, with no loss to the Chaos tank formations, the Catechism were losing their footsoldiers. Terrible casualties were inflicted by accurate Leman Russ and Baneblade fire, while the Devil Dogs on the left flank were equally destructive. In contrast the Chaos obliterators, teleported into good firing positions, were woeful, being destroyed for no Chaos gain.

By mid afternoon on the same day Davidson knew the Chaos forces were finished. At one point it was touch and go, with the Chaos forces, though taking severe casualties, still holding key objectives on the river. However as the day wore on and the first elements of the Librian airborne arrived, it became clear that the Catechism would nopt be able to hold their positions on the Amber river without being wiped out. The battle now became a fighting withdrawal.

Merridale was now open, and the remaining Catechism formations in the city were annihilated as Moonface's elite troops withrew south. By the 26th the area to the south of Merridale had been cleared, and the inquisition were pouring over the city which had been occupied since 2505.009M42, rooting out corruption where it had taken hold and cleansing the city. This cleansing cost Merridale half its population. However the city had been retaken and the momentum kept up. The Catechism was now on the back foot and taking heavy casualties. How long could they sustain the Alphe campaign?

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Eldar Raid Tyndareous

During 07.009M42 the Eldar were active once again in the Shadow Worlds, this time raiding Tyndareous, the main base of Imperial operations in the Mabb Nebula. The first attack came out of the blue, with the Eldar attacking settlements near to the mountainous Dark Region of the main Tyndareous inhabited zone.

As soon as the raid was underway the Imperium reacted quickly and a company of Space Marines from an unknown chapter moved in force against the Eldar. The battle however was inconclusive, with neither side taking many casualties in a confused and sporadic enounter. Never the less it seemed enough to convince the Eldar to abandon their action and they melted away inexplicably.

Just under a week later Inquisitor Huron arrived with two regiments of Imperial Guard. He suspected these eldar forces were new, in that they were not from the Kel Sandros Eldar. Their pattern of attacks seemed random, but the venerable Inquisitor lord knew they would not be, and the Eldar would have some alien plan behind thier assaults.

The reinforcements had come in the nick of time, as another Eldar force arrived out of the blue on 2007.009M42, causing a great deal of destruction to the main supply base on Tyndareous. However, the Imperial Guard who had just arrived soon made their presence felt, surprising the Eldar as they moved to wards the Tyndareous spaceport and slaughtering them. Inquisitor Huron congratulated the Imperial Guard Commander, but he knew the victory had been due to a large slice of luck as well as good generalship.

Huron now made it his business to determine where the webway portals on Tyndareous were, and what the motive behind these attacks by the Eldar was. Using old contacts hardly approved by many in the Inquisition, the old Inquisitor attempted to contact the Craftworld of Kel Sandros. He needed to know what was going on.

Orks defeated on Kallack

While the Tyranid infestation on Betor was being controlled by Imperial forces, the Ork successes on Kallack against the alien menace came to an abrupt halt on 1507.009M42 when "Da Verminator" suffered an unfortunate defeat fighting the aliens north of the mountain range known as "Da Lump". The large Ork settlement of Grank was encircled by Tyranid forces, who goaded the Orks to attack. This they did, and the Ork army soon became cut off from its supply base, despite taking few casualties and destroying a large number of Tyranid bio-soldiers.

The strategic result was a setback for the Orks, as thier unsupplied army of Grank soon fell apart, turning to fight among each other for what resources remained. The Tyranids then simply waited until the Orks had annihilated themselves, before consuming their biomass. The Tyranids were growing in strength once more on Kallack.

Betor Current

Daemonhunters turn the tide

Following the defeat of the Tyranids in north west Betor, General Dempsey, overall commander of forces on the planet, in consultation with Inquisitors Hathek and Huron, decided that the next target for cleansing should be the densely populated north eastern region, north of the Ostliche Hugel. PDF forces were augmented with those of Inquisitor Nikopolidis, who consented to the operation in absentia,

The fighting was dictated first by the sudden attack by the Tyranids towards the city of Langenhofen which pushed Imperial forces back. However the aliens did not follow up their success, preferring apparently yo consolidate their position.

Inquisitor Hathek was confused by this and immediately put together a small team to investigate the Tyranid activity between Langenhoffen and Bielaupbruck. The team of twenty suffered horrendous casualties, but the three veterans who made it back reported that a Tyranid hive node was being created by the aliens. This was Hathek's next target.

It was Nikopolidis' men who were in the thick of the fighting, and taking the Tyranids rather by surprise, the Imperium managed to surround and isolate the Hive Node before the aliens had realised the humans had understood the importance of the node. Desperate fighting followed, but the Inquisitorial forces then deployed their elite formations, fighting hard and holding the kine long enough for the Hive Node to be destroyed. Psykers reported an anguished scream in the warp as the Node succumbed.

Over the next few days the Tyranid activity between the settlements of Langenhofen and Bielaupbrook diminished, and the Imperial troops realised they now had the upper hand in the north east.

Alphe Current

Oldmere Cleansed

The surrounding of Erishore came as a blow to the Imperial command on Alphe, who now had the measure of the Catechism, but were unable to gain the critical victory to turn the tide in the campaign. Moonface was still too cunning. However, General Percival was not alone in his dislike of the Catechism, and on 2007.008M42 the Dark Angels strike cruiser Dark Dominion entered the system after hearing that elite Catechism formations were possibly harbouring members of the fallen.

The Dark Angels' next move was clinical, violent and entirely without discussion with the Imperial commander in the field. Percival was not consulted and was as surprised as the Chaos forces to see Dark Angels forces landing and deploying on Oldmere Island. Heavy fighting followed as the Dark Angels siezed the southern sea crossing and landed a force on northern Eastby, pushing towards Merridale.
Now the Catechism forces on Oldmere found themselves cut off, and without support from Moonface or his daemon allies.

The Chaos cultists and Traitor Marines fought tenaciously but were unable to prevent the inevitable. On 2507.009M42 the remaining Chaos forces on Oldmere were destroyed, the cultists slain to a man while the loyalist astartes troops were seen taking nearly a hundred Traitor Marines prisoner.

Catechism move on Erishore

The next major offensive by the Catechism came on 1807.009M42 after a period of regrouping and refitting by both sides. General Percival still felt that a westward move towards Deepsnow would be the main attack, so he had still not fortified heavily in the region of Erishore on Oldmere Island. Some of his subordinates considered this foolish, as they risked being cut off if the Dusk Raiders reached Westlake. It was on Oldmere the Catechism attacked.

Elite Catechism forces moved north and east towards the city of Erishore facing difficult and determined resistance from Imperial Guard and PDF forces. Once again the Imperial Guard put their new tactics into good operation, and the Catechism found the advance frustrating. Even so by the end of 1907.009M42 the Chaos forces had managed to surround, but not enter the city, thanks largely to the psychic intervention of their unholy Daemon Prince of Slaanesh.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Coronus Retaken

On 0807.009M42, with Nazghat away fighting Tyranids on Kallack, the Cerberex 35th Mechanised Regiment, along with its supporting units, put into action their final plan to destroy the remaining Ork fortifications on Coronus. The Cerberex Guard knew that victory over the Orks here would rid the world of Greenskin occupation, and give them their own homeworld.

The Cerberex Guard had been promised the world by the Dark Angels, who had in effect rescued the cream of Von Rundstedts army some years ago following the disasterous campaign on Cerberex which say half the planet lost to the rebel UFP, and the other half to the forces of Chaos. While the Imperium fully expected to retake Cerberex, this lay at the heart of the UFP Empire, and it was not anywhere near the top of the Imperium's priority list. The Dark Angels had taken Tyndareous, if Coronus fell it would become the Cerberex regiments' centre of operations, and their new home. Reluctantly, the Administratum accepted this deal, though it resented the Dark Angels for once again exceeding their authority.

The attack began on 0807.009M42 began at dawn, and knowing what was at stake everyone played their part in an historic victory. Facing the ork hordes of Da Verminator barely a soldier wavered in the face of the enemy, and the Imperial Guard completed the job of ridding Coronis of Orks in less than two days. After breaking through the Ork defences the mechanised units of the Cerberex Guard made short work of the Ork rabble, leaving just a few hundred who scattered to the hills. These would be mopped up later. For now Coronus was back in Imperial hands, and after years of bitter fighting and endless retreat the Cerberex regiments finally had something to cheer about.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Zadoc Subsector Latest

War in the Shadow Worlds

While the campaigns on Tarsis, Alphe and Betor continued as 009M42 progressed, the war between the races in the Shadow Worlds had not died down. At the beginning of 07.009M42 the Tau controlled Hylas and Memnon while the Imperium had a number of installations on Daedalon. Bothorion was still under Ork control while Coronus and Danelloth remained contested.

By the middle of 07.009M42 Elan Ro had progressed his campaign in the region, all but taking Danelloth, bottling up the Orks in a small region of the planet pock marked with ramshackle Ork forts. On 1007.009M42 Elan Ro declared the planet cleansed of Ork infestation and set about building a settlement for the Tau Empire.

Meanwhile Inquisitor Nikopolidis of the Ordo Malleus, recouperating on his blackship from his recent wounds suffered on Betor, sent an expeditionary force to the Shadow Worlds to investigate rumours of daemon summoning by the Catechism some months previously. This led him to Daedalon, but on the way his indentured forces conducted a series of raids on the Orks at Coronus, seriously weakening the Ork hold on the planet and allowing the relatively small Dark Angel and Cerberex Imperial Guard regiments to take more ground from their adversaries. The retaking of Coronus looked within sight after almost a year of intermittent fighting.

Then, on 0807.009M42 an unexpected event occurred. Following his departure from Tarsis Major commander Fastblade had relocated to the new Tau base on Memnon and by early 07.009M42 was deep into negotiations with Imperial envoys over the prospect of sending a significant Tau force to Betor to aid the Imperium in its fight against the Tyranids. While these negotiations continued, Fastblade received communication that his primary base was under attack.

Confused, the Tau concluded their talks for the day, and Fastblade was astonished to find Eldar forces in action against his troops at his main headquarters. The Eldar raid had occurred at dawn, but the Tau had detected their approach and railgun shots were the first sign that combat was underway. As the pale Memnon sun rose over the Tau base the Eldar attempted to press home their attack, but accurate fire from Fastblades Hammerheads and the timely intervention of his elite stealth suits saved the base from destruction. Even so the base itself took heavy damage, attacked by the mighty fists of a Wraithlord.

More distrubingly the Tau witnessed a strange group of Eldar amongst the more regular aliens they had encountered. Brightly painted, graceful figures whose style in combat made the fighting look like an elegant dance... One of death for the Tau. Eventually these strange figures were also driven off and the Tau were left wondering at the motive behind the attack on their base.

Alphe: Catechism break into Oldmere

After the fall of Pryford to Chaos forces the Imperial commanders had been pondering the Catechism's next move. Would they cut off further swathes of the Pryford meadows south or strike out west towards the heart of Alphe? Instead Moonface pushed north from Merridale and attempted a dawn landing on Oldmere island.

Advancing Chaos forces met Imperial scouts in the early morning amidst abandoned industrial works on the coast. Catechism forces were rushed in via Rhino transport, whilst Imperial armoured legions also advanced on the area. Battle was joined at dawn.

Imperial commanders were testing new battlefield strategies against the Catechism, following a defensive gunline tactic now blamed for the loss of Pryford. Instead a steady advance was displayed, with the Imperial forces using their higher number of vehicles to out flank the Chaos.
Fighting was fiercer than many battles on Alphe so far and Imperial troops were able to isolate and destroy a number of Chaos squads. It was particularly noted that the combat ability of the Oldmere troops was exemplary, holding their own against traitor marines.

Unfortunately despite brave efforts and inflicting heavy casualties the Imperial forces were forced into retreat, and the Catechism moved onwards towards Oldmere's primary city Erishore. Still a glimmer of hope remained, new tactics had proved somewhat more effective and the casualties inflicted would mean Moonface would take weeks to regroup before his next attack.

Tyranids cleansed from North West Betor

Following Hathek's notice of full scale invasion, the first fresh forces to arrive in the system were three Cerberex regiments, originally bound for Tarsis Major. While General Cunningham fumed about the loss of these extra elite troops, they were soon put into useful action on Betor by the Inquisitor, who had by 0107.009M42 taken full control of military operations on the planet.

The Cerberex Guard units were deployed in the north west of the planet, near the settlements of Herzbach and Sternbach, close to where the initial Tyranid encounters had taken place. The high proportion of armour in the elite Cerberex formations quickly made itself felt against the aliens in the relatively open ground of the Westliche Ebenen, and on the first day of the advance the alien death toll had already become horrific. Hellhound flame tanks, Leman Russ Demolishers and brand new Vendetta Gunships laid waste to the Tyranid hordes. In under three days the Imperial forces reached the central hive node of the north-western infestation and destroyed it using fire and explosives. Soon after the region was declared cleansed.

Orks contain tyranid threat

While the Imperium were suffering a full scale invasion on Betor the Orks were fairing somewhat better against the alien menace on Kallack. During 06.009M42 a series of running battles occurred between Ork warbands and Tyranid vanguard forces in the "Ooj Muntinz" in the middle of Kallack's main continent. Each warband would be led by a warboss, intent on proving his aggression and power.

The Tyranid scout forces suffered greatly, suffering a number of defeats and being forced deep into the wilderness as the Orks revelled in the new "sport" they had found with the alien arrival. A full scale invasion of Kallack didn't look likely in early 07.009M42, though the Orks would probably have relished the idea.

Ol Cha secures Silverbrook

While the Tau were being defeated in the north, in the south Ol Cha took advantage of a weakened line and the removal of the Cerberex regiments. Though Adeptus Astartes troops attempted to bar his way, Ol Cha was able to reach the west coast of Tuva some hundred miles north of Silverbrook, forcing two regiments of PDF to surrender and undoing the hard work ground gained by the Imperial forces some weeks before.

This effectively made Silverbrook "safe" and once again Cunningham's forces were frustrated by a failure of Astartes troops and what was becoming an overwhelming strategic advantage in terms of supply, manpower and equipment. Unless there was a change in this soon the war on Tarsis would be lost.

Cerberex Guard retake North Tuva

With the southern front slowly being rolled back by Ol Cha and Shadowstrike, Cunningham needed more troops to hold the line against the advancing Tau. On 0107.009M42 he received the news that the three fresh regiments of elite Guard had been redirected to Betor. This was a blow to the war on Tarsis, which it now seemed the Imperial High command were treating as low priority, but Cunningham was keen to go on the offensive.

Once again the Cerberex regiments recently deplyoed to the planet were keen to attack and get to grips with the Tau. Almost too willing in fact, as Cunningham had to admonish his subordinate commander on more than one occasion for trying to force the pace of the war. Eventually Cunningham acceeded to the Cerberex request, and five regiments were deployed to the northern Tau sector on Tuva.

This sector had been quiet since its occupation by the Tau and the defeat of Snazteef's Orks. With the main thrust in the south going well, the Tau had kept a reasonably strong force deployed under commander Strong Spear, but his orders were merely to distract enough force from the south to make life easier for Shadowstrike and Ol Cha.

On 0307.009M42 the Cerberex regiments, supported by ten PDF regimetns, launched a surprise attack on the Tau at dawn. Highly mechanised formations of veteran Imperial Guard troops, supported by Hellhounds, Demolishers and Vendetta units charged across the North Tuva plain, immediately yielding results. Unable to deal with such armoured formations the forces of Strong Spear immediately had to withdraw. Soon the fighting retreat became more of a rout as the Guard forces pressed home their advantage, not allowing the Tau to escape. Eventually Strong Spear had to admit defeat and evacuate via Manta to the Tau stronghold on Merrin. The Imperium had eliminated their northern Tuva front.

Strong Spear, one of Fastblade's proteges, had much to answer for after the defeat. His army, which had worked well against a number of Imperial formations in the past, notably the Porphyrians in operation Poseiden, had been unable to deal with the massed armoured formations which typified the Cerberex units. His cadres, battered and defeated, had much to learn.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

New link

New link added: Campaign system written up! See files section