My three whole readers of this blog (thanks gang!) may have noted that in 2022 we ran a bunch of games linked to a Campaign Map, the Scylla Quintus campaign, at our local gaming store Drawbridge Games. With the release of the boarding actions rules and the forthcoming 10th edition of Warhammer 40k, Justin and Sean (our great Crusade organizers) decided to sort of re-start things again. First with forces trying to vie for control of a Space Hulk, followed by (I think) using that as a launching point for a re-invasion of the Scylla Quintus cluster. A brand new map campaign ahead!
Below is a map of the initial displacement of forces seeking control of the hulk. Kudos to Sean for the design and updating of it! There are also other players who are joining in the campaign who will be adding into it as we roll forward (and at least one change in force already… tho I promise it’s not me!).
My mixed Aeldari force (will be Ynnari, but I had to start Drukhari just because that’s what I had more painted) took over one of the generator clusters initially, and I hope to expand out into those power sections by launching raids via the exterior of the hulk.
The first two games I played are detailed below. Both were wins with pretty solid control of the objectives. The first I suffered a lot more casualties than the second, but both were great fun versus good opponents with some beautifully painted models on really neat-looking terrain. Makes me pretty pleased.
Game One: Expendables
Altaya the Huntmistress heard the “hiss” as the laser cutting charges fired and opened access into the Space Hulk. Her honed gladiatrix’s senses immediately took stock of the sounds coming from the corridors ahead, as well as the peculiar scent. Something… fungal… was in the stale air. Appropriate enough, as fungi deal with dead matter.
It was a curious thing, joining with the followers of Yvraine, Prophetess of Ynnead. Altaya had even fought at Yvraine’s side a few times in the fighting pits of Commorragh–of course before her rebirth. Altaya had watched quietly as Yvraine’s influence spread amongst her people, and in a moment of sudden clarity (in an arena battle versus a hulking Cthellean Cudbear pumped full of Paingbringer drugs) recognized that she herself already walked the path of Ynnead. Altaya killed and killed, so that the power of Ynnead could grow to eventually free her people from the grip of She Who Thirsts. This was the purpose. This was her role.
Amidst the flotilla of ships conveying Yvraine when Altaya joined her, she was tasked with a particularly gruesome first task. One of the Drukhari crafts had a sizeable retinue from a Haemonculus coterie. And their fleshcraft was anathema to the path of Ynnead. So they had to go. But a tool is a tool, so after she slew their Haemonculi masters, Alaya was tasked with using the remaining Wracks to assault their way onto a Space Hulk where there was rumored information that might lead to a lost Crone World. She was given the task with the understanding that the Wracks were “expendable”. That she ought return without them, so the other Aeldari forces could then make their way into the Space Hulk.
The fungal scent became quickly clear when Altaya noted a tiny green humanoid scampering along a gantry. Orks. At least that meant it should be a quick affair. She advanced with her retinue of Wyches along one corridor, while tasking the Wracks to move down the opposite corridor where the sounds of Orks were loudest.
Quickly the battle was met for the Wracks, as they piled into a room with Ork Boyz, Meganobz, and a frightening Warboss with a massive chain axe. The cruel acids from their liquifier guns melted the initial waves of Orks, but the Mega Armored Nobz and Warboss managed to crash into their lines. For her part, Altaya and her Wyches were carving their way through lighter resistance of Boyz and Gretchin, securing key access points along the way.
The Wracks were no match for the sheer fury of the Nobz and Warboss. Despite their modified and muscled frames, they were not-so-smoothly cut down. The last of the Wracks died being sawed in half by the Warboss. The ping went off on Altaya’s bio-tracker… the last of their heartbeats had ceased. The Wracks were gone, their force used but now disposed of. Make way for the more dignified devotees of death.
As she turned to go back to the entry point she heard a dreadful metal crunch, and turned and saw the Warboss had torn a bulkhead door clean off. Despite her reflexes, the sheer surprise of the Warboss’ arrival caught her off guard. And it gave him just a moment to slash out with his axe and sever her right arm. Altaya tumbled away swiftly, stowing her glaive and putting pressure on the stump that remained. The beast of an Ork struggled to fit through the bulkhead, and that gave her time to sprint away and back to her point of entry.
She’d accomplished her mission, and secured an entry site. But at the cost of her arm. Good thing that she hadn’t… fully… eliminated all of the Haemonculi. One, a vile creature named Oribraq, had bargained with her after she eliminated the others. He worked for Archon Yraleath the Calcimineer, a rising Archon of the Commorragh who was lending troops to Yvraine’s cause (whether he was a true believer or just garnering favor was unclear). And Oribraq indicated she should she need it, Altaya would be free to use his services should anything happen to her. A whole coven of Haemonculi would be an affront to Yvraine surely, but a single one? Willing to use fleshcraft to support her lieutenants? Well, that’s another matter. She cauterized the wound with the glowing edge of her electrified blade, and made her way through the corridors to the newly-hidden workshop where Oribraq had best prove his worth as a fleshcrafter and restore her arm like new.
Game Two: A Crisis of Leadership
“Something is off,” thought Elramyn, as her team of Corsairs rushed down the hallway of the Space Hulk. Their ship had been moored mysteriously outside of Craftworld Fenn’Dara for two days before making the webway route to join the larger Aeldari flotilla assaulting the Space Hulk. The Craftworlders had been led into a private chamber by the Bosun and they had remained locked in there the entire flight. Elramyn caught word from the galley mate that brought them food that they were Banshees, as he saw their masks when he dropped off their food. “Why all the secrecy?” she had wondered then. At least that was clearer now. Elramyn’s raiding team was being led by Jain Zar herself. The legendary Banshee Phoenix Lord. “Supposedly”.
There were subtle signs that puzzled Elramyn. “Was it just a fancy suit of Exarch armor? Why would she go with such a small contingent into the unstable space of a disintegrating hulk? Why was she missing the soft chalk marks on the wall left undoubtedly by Aeldari Rangers that this section had already been cleared?” But could she question the Phoenix Lord herself? And not be just cut down by screaming Banshees?
They had definitely moved into a space where another Aeldari boarding party was located, and Elramyn could make out the distinctive camoweave cloaks of Rangers ahead. They didn’t look good in the ship settings, and the Rangers’ obvious discomfort made it more abrupt. Clearing a ship was not their usual task. Where were their other forces?
With a sudden howl, Jain Zar dashed down the access corridor, launching her spinning triskele into the Rangers, felling one of them. An odd voice sounded over their helmet communicators: “Follow and strike, for she is aberration!” She raced ahead into the access corridor, and Elramyn watched as the graceful paragon of war blithely blundered into a wireweave net that the Rangers had no doubt left supporting their position. The binding fibers tore into the Aeldari warrior’s leg armor, slicing the muscles and leaving her hobbling. Elramyn was in utter shock.
The shock turned to awe at what happened next. Striding from behind the barricades came a regal figure: Yvraine, the Prophetess of Ynnead. Forces of Asuryani and even some Drukhari swarmed at her side. The banshees that had accompanied Jain Zar and some of Elramyn’s compatriot Corsairs rushed into Yvraine’s forces with equal abandon, to sadly equal results–lithe Incubi sliced with huge blades, while Dire Avengers shredded with shuriken fire.
Amidst it all, the stalled Jain Zar hissed and cursed as Yvraine approached. A momentary tilt of her head was all it took, and a sudden burst of necrotic psychic energy shot from her eyes and detonated about an inch behind Jain Zar’s mask. The lifeless, headless body fell in a crumple on the ground.
Elramyn couldn’t help but blurt out: “You killed a Phoenix Lord!”
Yvraine turned and looked at her, and responded with a serene voice.
“Did I, child? Look closely at what you know. Is this the Phoenix Lord Jain Zar, the greatest of all Banshees, first of the Exarchs, student of Asurmen? Would such a warrior be felled so easily?”
Elramyn blanched as Yvraine continued.
“I pose to you, that query does not even truly matter. Because she fell in this manner, she was not Jain Zar. Maybe she believed she was and acted on some misguided concern of rejecting my endeavors in the name of Ynnead. Maybe she was an agent put up to the task by some meddling Archon of Commorragh–or a quite-the-same meddling Farseer in a Craftworld. Regardless. She has perished so simply, she must never have been Jain Zar in the first place.”
Elramyn puzzled for a stretch of seconds in silence.
“Return to your ship, Corsairs, lest I hold you accountable beyond the actions of this charlatan leader,” Yvraine continued after the pause. “There are so many others on this Hulk that we could be fighting. Why give in to base plots and schemes, when you could either be free plying the stars or taking up arms and fighting alongside me. She made the choice to betray Ynnead, and got Ynnead’s embrace instead. Tarry not long in making your decisions.”
And with that, Yvraine turned and led her forces away thru the decking and bulkheads. Elramyn looked at the few remaining Corsairs, who looked back to her for guidance. She was at a complete loss for words at first, then finally spoke.
“Something was off,” she said to them. “I noted it too. Glad we’re through that. Let’s go back to the ship.”
I started by doing up two new leader options for my Boarding parties, Yvraine leading a force of Ynnari devotees herself and a Succubus conversion in case I feel like going all Drukhari on occasion (as I did with my first campaign game).
This was a super-fun model to work on, tho I definitely converted her headdress down and made it so her hair braced on her arm. Because this kit is a heart-breaker if you don’t do that, hah. The slightest bump or drop and it all would break.
I was kinda really pleased with how Yvraine’s sword turned out. I saw a tutorial for a prismatic blade, and I followed that best I could. I think it’s pretty neat.
The other leader I did up was a Succubus, as I wanted a model that was armed with a different weapon set than the Razorflails (which is how I did up my first Succubus). I converted over an Age of Sigmar model that had a great coiled whip, using the normal glaive of a Succubus and some Wyches parts.
I got a few more Drukhari Kabalite Warriors completed, as I want to keep rolling with small squads of them (to do a massed Venom mobile hunting cadre at some point). One of these was an old classic metal model, the crouching one with the Shredder.
I also completed a unit of Dire Avengers too, as doing Ynnari means painting up a new Asuryani unit for every Drukhari unit I wish to field. I definitely need to get rolling on the Craftworlds side of things!
I’m pretty pleased with how they turned out, and I also am really happy with how the Saim Hann color scheme could be layered with their aspect colors. The back banner on the Exarch particularly was a spot to do it, and I also like how the decal transfers worked for it. Huzzah for Micro Set and Micro Sol as the adhesives to make decal transfers perfect.
And I also added an Aledari Warlock just because I was on a roll with painting Aeldari forces! I might be more proud of him than any of the other models in this set, hah.
And finally a non-boarding actions model, just because I wanted to finish it up. An Aeldari War Walker with Bright Lance and Eldar Missile Launcher.
And if all that painting was not enough, I even squeaked in two more Battletech Mechs: first an Adder, a little quick one.
And then a Dire Wolf. Both for my Clan Jade Falcon, which I’m really digging the look for.
Phew!!! All told a really monumental couple of weeks of painting new models this time. Huge progress, and deciding to go with Ynnari for the campaign really helped me put wind into what I was painting.
Finally, there’s a new edition of Warhammer 40k coming out relatively soon–so while I’m doing PL currently for my totals, there will be a brand new points system at some moment that is rapidly nearing. When it happens I’ll convert over accordingly. For now I figured I’d list both the PL and the current points in the edition as they stand.
Army Painted Totals
40k Aeldari (Primarily Drukhari but also Asuryani, Ynnari, and Harlequins): 167 PL / 3,315 points
Aeronautica Imperialis Aeldari: 373 points
Battletech Clan Jade Falcon: Timber Wolf, Mongrel, Adder, Dire Wolf, Elementals (x1)