Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Squad Smackdown: Dark Eldar vs Grey Hunters

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Welcome to the final battle of the semi-finals, and what a match up we have for you today! Two very closely matched squads that excel in the assault - 15 Dark Eldar Wyches led by a Hekatrix with agoniser; vs the ubiquitous Grey Hunters pack, with 2 flamers, 2 power swords and a Wolf banner. Both these squads can pack a punch and have good staying power.

With the Fleet ability the Wyches have the advantage when it comes to getting the assault. They roll a 3 on the drugs table, which is Grave Lotus - they all get +1 Strength, very useful.

The gate opens!

They Wyches easily win the roll to assault. The Grey Hunters squad activate their banner, allowing them to reroll all ones they roll in combat this turn. The Wyches each shoot their splinter pistol, hitting 9 times and causing 5 wounds - but all are saved! What a stroke of luck for the Space Wolves there.

The Wyches charge into assault but shockingly it seems like they are holding back. 42 normal attacks and 4 power weapon ones, all wounding on a 4+, but they only manage 19 hits and 8 wounds - and none are from the Agoniser. Perhaps they want to stretch out the Grey Hunters' torment?

After allocating wounds the Space Wolves only lose 2 of their number. No 1s were rolled. Striking back, they cannot benefit from the Counterattack rule because of the Wyches' defensive grenades. 16 attacks (the power weapons don't matter against the Wyches close combat invulnerable save) lead to 9 hits and 5 wounds. Amazingly only a single 1 was rerolled for the banner. The Dark Eldar save well, losing only 1 of their number. That 4++ save has proved priceless.

The Grey Hunters lost the combat. At Leadership 8, they need a 7 to run but roll snake-eyes! Not going anywhere...

Round 2 and the Wyches continue to hack away. Without the charge bonus (and rolling 1 for the hydra gauntlets) they manage 15 hits, converted to 8 wounds (1 from the agoniser). The Space Wolves continue to roll well for saves, failing one and losing another to the power weapon.

The remaining Grey Hunters get 12 attacks, managing 6 hits and 3 wounds - but then the Wyches fail all their saves! That means the Eldar have lost the round by one. The Hekatrix has Leadership 9, but that doesn't matter because once again I roll snake eyes for Morale.

At this point the battle devolves into a bit of a slapfight, lasting another five rounds. Rather than bore you with the details, here's a round by round summary:

  • Round 3: 2 of the 6 Grey Hunters die, then 2 Wyches die out of the 11 remaining - a tie!
  • Round 4: Only one death, a Grey Hunter. They flee, are caught but make their Fearless save.
  • Round 5: Two more Grey Hunters die, to agoniser wounds, and the Wyches are unhurt. The Wolves make their Leadership test but there is only one Space Wolf left...
  • Round 6: The Wyches inflict 4 wounds but all are saved. The sole remaining Hunter can't even manage to hit!
  • Round 7: The last Grey Hunter finally goes down to a savage agoniser wound.

Aftermath: What an unbelievable struggle from the Space Wolves! They tried everything to survive, and rolled some brilliant saves, but the Wyches are just a bad matchup for the Grey Hunters - defensive grenades countering counterattack and those invulnerable saves making the power weapon attacks no more effective. We have our final four and it's 100% Xenos!


  1. Ummm... defensive grenades don't negate counter-attack...

  2. "the ubiquitous Grey Knights pack"
    Uhh, I think you got a typo there.

  3. Anonymous: doh! Thanks - typo fixed.

    Moros: Well I disagree from the RAW perspective, but apparently this is a quote from the Space Wolf FAQ:

    Q. Picture this: My Grey Hunters unit including Ragnar Blackmane is assaulted and makes a successful Leadership test to Counter-attack. Do they then benefit from his Furious Charge Special rule (+1 S and +1 I)? Also, can the original assaulter then deploy defensive grenades to rob the Space Wolves of their Counter-attack bonus? (p55)
    A. The Counter-attack special rule only confers the +1 assault bonus and no other advantages normally associated with assaulting. Therefore Ragnarʼs unit does not benefit from Furious Charge. Also, we think it is a bit rich for an assaulting unit to get the bonus for attacking
    and defending, so no, defensive grenades cannot be used to negate the bonus attack from counter-attacking.

  4. So we have some controversy! The council will withdraw and discuss its option.


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