The fight for Bellerophon’s Fall in the Badab War campaign we are going through at the moment continues. We got through a few games this weekend, with both the Salamanders and Marines Errant making an appearance as they try to bust out of their landing zones and force the Mantis Warriors off the industrial moon.
The Salamanders had been suffering from their initial landings, with the quick-striking Mantis Warriors harrying them at every turn. The Loyalists had seen their supply dumps pillaged by fast-moving Mantis Warriors strike forces, and now had no choice but try to force their way into enemy territory to extend their perimeter.
Unfortunately, the Mantis Warriors were watching and staged a classic ambush as the Salamanders column advanced – straight into the sights of three Vindicators.
The Salamanders broke out of the ambush but sustained very heavy losses, before their Captain engaged his counterpart in the Mantis Warriors, and badly wounded him, finally forcing the Secessionists to withdraw.
The Marines Errant were having an altogether happier time as they pushed forward out of their landing zones and forced the Mantis Warriors into a fighting withdrawal through a disused refinery complex.
Three Librarians of the Mantis Warriors and a Deredo Dreadnought formed the anchor of the defenders, and they succeeded in stalling the Marines Errant for several crucial minutes.
Needing to budge the Mantis Warriors without any further delay, the Marines Errant teleported a Terminator Assault Squad and then dropped an Assault Squad into the Mantis Warriors’ rear line, causing a great deal of disruption at the cost of their own lives.
The Mantis Warriors made a last stand in the shattered shell of one of the refinery buildings, a Tactical Squad and Librarian weathering the constant pounding from a far-off Devastator Squad as a Venerable Dreadnought and more Marines Errant advanced under withering fire. In the end though, the position was untenable and the Mantis Warriors were forced to fall back further.
Back around the Salamanders’ landing zones, the Loyalist advance had almost completely stalled, leaving them ripe for a counterattack by the elite strike forces of the Mantis Warriors. A single Tactical Squad baited the Salamanders to advance forwards, before they were caught in a pincer between Mantis Warriors Attack Bikes, Landspeeders, and a well-armed Stormraven.
The Salamanders’ Stormtalon bravely tried to fight off the Stormraven, which made continual strafing runs on its ground forces, who were completely disrupted by the appearance of a teleporting Terminator Squad led by a Mantis Warriors’ Librarian.
The two forces fought one another to a standstill and while the Salamanders were able to beat the Mantis Warriors back, their own force cohesion had been shattered.
While the Marines Errant were driving the Mantis Warriors back to prepared defensive positions, the Salamanders had no choice but to fall back to their landing zone and weather the Mantis Warriors’ last push. If they could hold out long enough, there was a chance that the Marines Errant would create enough breathing space to finish the landings and start the assault to take Bellerophon’s Fall.
Well, the battles, with two victories and one draw to the Loyalists. The Mantis Warriors have done sufficient damage to the Salamanders to force them onto the defensive, but have been put on the defensive themselves by the Marines Errant. In both cases, we will be seeing how Space Marines function against properly fortified positions in the very near future.
As mentioned before, all the battles in this part of the Badab War campaign have been drawn from the old Battle Missions book, with some slight conversion to the new edition. We are using the Imperial Armour volumes as a source for the Badab War itself, though we are in the process of making some changes, again because of the arrival of the new edition.
We have also started taking a good look at the battle of the Karthan Convoy, which will involve a lot of boarding actions and the odd dogfight in the depths of space!