Friday, February 17, 2017

Holy crap I got some hobby time in. Some basecoating, and random-junk terrain elements. Part of a creative response. I still have not unpacked from the big game, fully.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Narrative Mission: The Derelict Fragment of the 4B

The Derelict Fragment Orbiting DORIC-AR1

It has been 857 year cycles since the shipping cruiser Kastel 4B collided with several bodies in the outer Doric Belts. The Narendra shipping fleet had been sending its conglomerate influence even this far during that time, delivering bonuses to bridge masters and rogue traders alike to ferry illicit un-tithed cargo to warehouses within this sphere of operation.

The Kastel 4B had been bribed by the Narendra corporation to hide over 500,000 tons of painite ore that was raided from the Vestegah system by Orkoid pirates and then subsequently stolen by agents hired by the Marines Errant, tasked with guarding and protecting the shipping routes in this sector. A year previously, the Errants had reported the cache to House Ecale, but Imperial bureaucracy delayed and eventually buried the report from reaching the Administratum levels.

Narendra agents, picking up on this discrepancy, created a decoy inventory of food rations: turf, water, and fermented liver oil matching the exact tonnage of the painite and jettisoned an empty cargo tug-hold hull into the low orbit of Chargis III, where it burned up on re-entry. This was staged as an unfortunate accident, around the same time a team of servitors and an astropath were found drifting in orbit around Chargis IV.

Their relationship to this incident would be discovered by the Astartes much later. But that is another story.

The Narendra corporation, never reporting the loss of the shipment, then re-appropriated funds to the outfitting of a small, independent shipping agent named Kastel. Their tug: The 4B, was hastily reinforced for carrying a heavier load and during a docking procedure (described in its logs as “mandatory maintenance”) was loaded with the half-million ton cargo. The tug was then escorted by the Marines Errant into the outer reaches of the system, all the while the cargo manifest described: “500K tons of Turf, Water, and Liver Oil.”

The Marines Errant were able to guide the Kastel cruiser through the first of two debris fields surrounding the Vestegah system, however the third consisted of multiple patches of extremely dense debris, too difficult to navigate anything larger than an interceptor through. The Errants commanded the 4B to divert around the field, but at the last moment the 4B decided to make a break for it. This was a misguided decision.

The captain of the 4B was a young 22-year old human named Miltz Aingisni, barely old enough to warrant the position but was catapulted into the position by Kastel executive officers after receiving multiple accomodations from the Narendra corporation. Captain Aingisni was paid half of his bribe (which was a pittance, considering the cargo) upon accepting the mission, and was promised the other half when the painite was delivered to a station maintenance craft in orbit around DORIC-AR1. Captain Aingisni was not used to piloting alongside Astartes craft, and found himself perspiring and panicked after continued comms blared in his headset demanding the confirmation of his location, his exact bearings, his precise headings, his final destination, total number of crew on board, current security status, damage reports, engine efficiency and so on. Any captain worth his salt would know this was what security from Astartes was like: constantly probing for any sense of something amiss. For poor Miltz, however, it was paranoia-inducing torture. When they reached the third belt he was ordered to change course drastically away from his original heading. He decided to take matters into his own hands and run the debris field without a pre-vectored path.

The 4B was never meant for such tight maneuvers to begin with. The Kastels had built their cruisers long and thin in the midsection cargo holds, heavy long-range engines in the rear, the barbell-shaped deck and living quarters in the front. Armament was minimal. Minor blasters and a single lascannon for defense against the kind of pirates that might harass the usual low-value cargo Kastels were known for was all that was needed or afforded. Against a dense field as the outer ring of Vestegah, using them to deflect incoming debris would be like throwing pebbles into a snowstorm. The 4B was quickly struck in the aft thrusters by a long-retired SP-EC-UP communications array station, its jagged wreckage smashing out the rear stabilizers of the flailing 4B. The cruiser pitched, failed to right itself, and the enormous tonnage on board the relatively small cruiser split the cargo holds in half. Inside the bridge, the captain was deafened by the horrible scream of bulkheads stretched to their limit and then torn apart. The engines slammed into a nearby slab of fractured ceramite plating and detonated, scattering half of the painite ore, dusting space with diamond-like clusters. The force of the explosion flung the other half of the 4B, end over end, straight into the thickest part of the field.

The head and upper torso of 4B hurtled on for several more minutes, taking successive beatings from small bodies in the belt. Sensor arrays and complex scanning equipment on the prow were smashed into fragments, while the hull began to take on the appearance of crumpled foil. In the command module sirens blared and the lights went out. Miltz, trying still to pilot without propulsion and quickly running out of options, had spotted his fate through the front visual confirmation portal: a spinning fuel column, 400 yards long and 200 in diameter, a cylinder coated in ice and dust that had been out here since before the heresy. Small bits of metal and rock had embedded themselves in its surface, and it now hurtled toward them like a giant white club studded with rusted knobs. He dashed out from the command module and into the rear corridor. His crew that were not automated servitors broke and ran in all directions, clinging to whatever they could before impact.

Miltz quickly accessed a command panel, activated his command codes and sealed a section of the front half of the ship that contained the life support systems and a large bank of emergency batteries. He had one minute to get there.

If one were to view the collision of the fuel column and the 4B from one side, it would appear that the column would have been spinning clockwise, and the 4B would have been spinning counter-clockwise. The crumpled prow of the 4B brought its forehead up to the descending club of the column, and the collision sent ice and debris outward in an impressive spray. The command decks of the 4B were shorn into three pieces, and the exposure to the vacuum of space sent men and beds and towels and equipment flying in all directions. Water and blood boiled.

The combatants in the match were eerily still at the end, having expended their forward momentum and spin upon one another in an almost equalizing manner. Shards of metal and chunks of hull drifted apart and became part of the belt. The cargo holds of the front section of the ship broke loose but amazingly remained mostly intact. The Astartes escort put all of their further efforts into recovery of the painite ore, of which 45% was eventually recovered. To this day, small-scale scrap skimmers still visit the field hoping to come across a chunk of forgotten ore.

Initially, Miltz Aingisni survived the collision. He and four other men had descended into decks 1 and 2, sealing off lacerated sections of hull around them by closing and welding major bulkheads. While they operated the life support on the smallest amount of power possible, they wouldn’t dare use the short range transmitters to call for help. The Astartes now new the shipment was a theft-in-progress and would blast them from the sky. Their only hope would be to wait in the field until all was clear. In their spare time they had hastily scavenged a solar panel array for replenishing their backup batteries.

After a week adrift in the belt the men had activated a positional RCS liquid propulsion thruster. These were normally used for docking adjustments, and the 4B had scores of them all over her hull. On this small fragment, it could adjust their drift to some degree, and it was decided that they use it to leave the belt to facilitate better communication, and hope their distress call could be heard. It was also the week they realized they did not have enough food, and the temperature of their wreckage-refuge was dropping.

In a few months, they were frozen and starved to death. It didn’t matter which one came first. 4B’s resident vermin population, a little bit more immune to the cold than mankind’s best, ate most of the corpses before succumbing to the same fates as their last suppers. The final fragment of Kastel 4B drifted helplessly into escape orbit, and went adrift for more than half a century, slowly maintaining oxygen levels, quietly pinging out a distress call. The Kastel family was quickly persecuted and executed for treason after this incident, making the derelict fragment of 4B the last remaining vessel of the small shipping business. However the Narendra corporation was never traced to the initial bribe, and things moved on. Things were forgotten over the centuries. The Narendra corporation swelled to even larger sizes, eventually having entire systems named after them and becoming the go-to name in cargo transport for a multitude of systems in the Imperium of Mankind.


This brings us to the present time. The cruiser Entract is stationed in high orbit around the war-torn DORIC-AR1, extremely low on fuel and committing most of its forces to a grinding war against chaos and xenos below on the planet’s surface. This has been going on for years, and the war has taken a heavy toll. Multiple Astartes and Astra Militarum forces patrol the skies and skirmish with enemy forces. Because of all of this activity, this small fragment of a broken ship was barely noticed drifting into the system until its archaic 1,000 year-old distress call was picked up on barely used Imperial channels, now monitored strictly for the sake of being thorough.

*static*…please send aid, this is Miltz Aingisni of the Kestel group, survivors of the wreck of the Kestel 4B. We have been tricked. If unable to help please notify Narendra of our location… *static* {automated coordinates follow}

The wreck was scanned. Data was collected. No life forms on board. Servitors scribbled notes for Astropaths to send. The return message was more urgent than what the Errants may have expected, or wanted.

“Divert tactical resources to investigation of derelict vessel. Expend protocols T1. A7. D9. Boarding and extraction of data slates. Unum Prius Dominantur.”

They were to exterminate anyone found on board. Dataslates that would later be found scattered through the narrow passageways of the derelict, they were also to be collected. Under the utmost security.

Marines were hastily assembled and boarded onto the Stormtalon. There was an open chamber in the port (or what could be called the port) where the Marines could stage "exteriores spatium” and begin to cut open the bulkhead.

Someone else had beat them there.


Chief Librarian Lydriis had certainly detected it. The faint whisper. It was like a waft of a scent upon the air of the warp. It was an echo, not audible, but it reflected the death cries of an astropath.

The whisper of the message tugged at his decision making. It pulled his logic. It had transmitted that message, that astropath of old. That astropath from 850 or so years ago. It had been jettisoned, sending psychially into space its anger, its frustration, its inability to conform. This astropath had known something about the wrong person. Or group of people.

Or organization. Or government. It was difficult to make out which.

And this whisper of a message- it had drifted across the centuries, unidentified. Lydriis had first detected while upon a Black Ship, drifting through the Vestegah system. Since then he has become attenuated to its psychic flavor, being able to pick it out amongst the other threads of The Warp.

The data slates had offered a clue. The name? NARENDRA. The whisper intensified if Lydriis concentrated upon the data slate protocols. Something directed the stream when he would read the branding of the cases they were found in.

Why did this vex him? Of all the things that he could occupy his mind with, this one stayed with him for years. The whisper pulled his logic.

“Send a comm,” he muttered at one of three servo skulls hovering and wavering just beyond his enormous red cloak, upon the steel bulkhead of the star cruiser. One of the skulls whined a mechanical whir to attention and a tiny blue light blinked blinked in obedience upon its metallic crest. "Magos Explorator Kel Mortan: more of the pieces of our puzzle lie within this.” An image of the drifting, wrecked hull of the 4B.

“This, too, is worth our time. And our valuable resources.”

The servo skull shivered and darted away. A second later there was silence, exempt for the drone of The Draco’s massive engines sending a low hum thru ought the entirety of the ship. Here, in the observation dome, they were barely noticeable.

But Lydriis didn’t hear them. Nor did he glance down upon the planet below, war raging upon its surface. The war would intensify in the next 24 hours. It would be the perfect time to board the derelict undetected.


Players field 1500 point insertion teams. Bikes, vehicles, and other “non-Zone Mortalis” units will be chosen, using formations (not unbound).

Players will divide their army into two sections: a deployment unit, and escalation units held in reserve. The Escalation will be described later.

Players will discuss terrain features, then roll-off. This mission is designed for the Industrial Zone F.A.T. mat.

The winner of the roll off will choose either Entrance Room 1 or 2. The winner will deploy his deployment unit fully within the room. Player two will follow to do so in the opposite room. Seize the Initiative may be rolled for, otherwise the winner of the roll off will begin the first turn. No reserves arrive turn one, no matter what.

Escalation: Each turn a number of units equal to the turn number may be chosen to come into play from reserve. Two dice may be rolled turn two, three on turn three. All the other normal rules for reserves apply. Players must deploy units that do not deepstrike into their respective Entrance Rooms 1 or 2.

Infiltrators will not be allowed to infiltrate in this game.


There are several rooms that contain lights within them, or have specific colors relating to them. These colors are:

Yellow, Orange, Red, Bright Green, Blue. Yellow rooms are like the #1 and #2 deployment areas. Bright Green look like toxic pits, Red looks like the portal rooms and so on.

Hallways do not have a color designation ever. Just the “room” shapes. Look at the map. You get the idea.

A unit may, instead of participating in the shooting phase, choose to search a room currently occupied by one of its models. This could conceivably count as two rooms, if the unit is big enough to “stretch” between the two.

For each room a searching unit occupies, roll one “Special Colored Die” during the shooting phase. The Special Colored die has one color that matches each colored room and one extra color: Purple.

The player will then compare the color rolled versus the color or colors of the rooms it is searching.

IF THE DIE COLOR MATCHES THE ROOM: The matching colored Evidence is found.


IF THE DIE COLOR IS PURPLE: You gain one “Black Eye Point.”

At the end of the game we’re going to compare evidence. If someone scores a “Red Evidence,” by rolling the Special Colored Die during the shooting phase, he will have completed the Red Objective of the game. However, if the opponent has also scored a “Red Objective” by the end of the game, the two Reds will cancel each other out.

Basically, your Red cancels out my Red. And my Yellow will cancel your Yellow. These are tallied and compared at the end of the game.

Each purple “Black Eye Point” can be used, at the end of the game, to cancel ANY one piece of evidence from the opposing side. However, a purple may not be used score a point. Only cancel an opponent’s point.

A player winning a colored objective will advance the storyline accordingly.

The first color selection is for Mechanicus / Iron Hands. The second one is for the Marines Errant:

Red- “Manifests from the 4B, extracted from dispensary data from secondary buffers indicate that the vessel had been modified extensively prior to this very departure. “

Red- “Several scans of the primary and secondary buffers have detected various instances of malware that has been deemed heretical in nature.”

Yellow- “Communications logs show the final transmissions coming from this vessel were distress signals sent on pirate wavelengths which suggests the crew were purposefuly avoid the channels of the Imperium, or even Narendra Corporation. “

Yellow- “Power consumption tables show, upon extrapolation of their data, that the crew had insufficient power to broadcast on anything more potent than basic pirate radio.”

Green- “Chemical residues in this area prove to be deposits of decayed painite.”

Green- “Adeptus Mechanicus in this area are supplied with spectral scanners produced in factories owned by Clan Jordaan. The Jordaan are not to be trusted.”

Orange- “A manifest explicitly details a transfer of funds from the Narendra Corporation.”

Orange- “There is an abundance of forged files and documents.”

Blue- “The real contents of this vessel: Painite Ore.”

Blue- “A storage locker was found. Inside were remains of Turf, and Fermented Liver Oil.”

Purple- “A Black Eye- information and suspicion about the enemy.”

Again, at the end of the game, Reds cancel out Reds, etc, and Purple cancels everything.
A player on a RED objective may also OPERATE THE HATCHES. These pieces of terrain look like big spiral hatch-like vents. This is also done in place of a shooting attack. A unit may not SEARCH and OPERATE THE HATCHES in the same turn.

Operating the hatches will open or close the hatches immediately, and they will maintain their state until operated again.

When the Hatches are Open, the following rule takes effect:

Cold Void & Poisoned Air

When this special rule is in effect,
the following apply:

All weapons and attacks with a
Strength of 4 or higher gain the
Rending special rule, unless their
target has Hardened Armour
or Void Hardened Armour, has
an Armour value (AV) or has a
save of 2+. In the case of attacks
against mixed units, apply these
rending wounds to the more
vulnerable targets first.

All weapons and attacks which
already have the Rending special
rule now rend on a roll of 5 or 6,
unless their target has Hardened
Armour or Void Hardened
Armour, has an Armour value
(AV) or has a save of 2+. In the
case of attacks against mixed
units, apply these rending
wounds to the more vulnerable
targets first.

Weapons and attacks which
have the Blast special rule also
now cause pinning if they didn’t


No one does. The scenario is just there to create a storyline. The Narendra corporation is actually funnelling money into civil unrest in several large metropolitan areas. However, no one can prove this.

If the Mechanicus / Iron Hands army end up collecting enough evidence to send out some Inquisitorial Agents to investigate Narendra it would stem the tide of weapons and materiel to rebels on the surface of DORIC-AR1.

If the Marines Errant prove the facts state otherwise, Narendra ships will secure even more clearance to the planet’s surface and will be greeted by the rebellion warmly.

The Mech / Iron Hands army is working for the best of Imperial interests, the Marines Errant believe they’re doing the same thing, but have also been ordered to kill anything they see on sight. These orders come from way up, but will, for the time being, help the enemy.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Thursday, February 9, 2017

I played against the ork trenches. Here, the battle wagons round the corner. Full of Nobz.

Monday, February 6, 2017