My list is here. My opponent’s list was three Renegade Knights with a variety of shooting weapons and Magnus the Red.
The first mission was six objectives in a rectangle formation and two more in the midfield with Spearhead Assault deployment. This was advantageous for me as it kept my opponent nearly as far away overall as possible and given his army would strongly beat mine in combat, never a bad thing. My opponent having four drops was always going to get the +1 to go first and could put a lot of pressure with his knights / magnus on my army if he got close. I do have the speed to play some keep away and his firepower would be pretty ineffective against me given the negative modifiers to hit so I just had to deal with the inevitable combat damage. My secondaries included Big Game Hunter, Titan Slayer and Recon. BGH and Titan Slayer go hand in hand and if I do not kill at least 3/4 of his army, I have likely lost anyway. His secondaries included BGH, Headhunter and Kingslayer on my Autarch.
With this in mind, I deployed my Farseer and Autarch exposed to a double jumping Magnus, Rangers on the flanks to quickly move in for Recon, the Reapers hiding behind some ruins and the Wave Serpents on the wings. I really should have kept my Reapers just a little further back, particularly since I hid them from LoS so there was no chance of overwatch (not that Magnus would care about it). It would have been a long charge but certainly doable. I could have also thrown them in a Serpent (watch this refrain). The Knights deployed mostly in the centre to be near three objectives. Knights won first turn and I did not attempt to seize.
Knights Turn 1 –
Magnus took the bait and flew straight up while the Knights all moved forward slightly but not huge amounts. Magnus then double jumped with Warp Time and smited my Autarch to death. The Farseer then bit the dust in combat but the Knight shooting did very little, taking a few wounds off a Serpent.
My opponent killed a unit, held an objective, killing two characters and had completed the Kingslayer objective for 8 points.
Eldar Turn 1 –
My opponent made the mistake of splitting up Magnus and the Knights; while I was happy Magnus jumped ahead, I expected the Knights to be right behind him which they were not. This meant my Turn 1 was relatively straight forward – get rid of Magnus without fear of repercussion. I was so focused on this I forgot to move one of my Ranger squads so missed out on Recon this turn. I unloaded my Banshees and Wraithguard to maximise the chances of Magnus dying and failed to get off any psychic powers thanks to Magnus’ +2 on psychic rolls and not having my Farseer. My flyers mostly flew up the right side to ensure double negatives to hit, though the Hemlock was closer in the middle of the board to ensure range (he could have moved more right to be fair). I wiggled and Advanced my Serpents – even though they were then hitting at neg 1’s, they would be very hard to bring down from the Knights and I was confident in my ability to drop Magnus.
Everything shot, included the Serpent Shields to push through some Mortal Wounds, and Magnus fell with combat from the Banshees an option left, this meant the most significant threat to my army was gone though I had spent one turn basically turtled up in my deployment zone.
I killed a unit, held more objectives and got a point from Big Game Hunter for 4 points. My opponent led 4 to 9 at the conclusion of Turn 1 as he gained an extra point for killing more units.
Knights Turn 2 –
My opponent again did not move his Knights up very aggressively but started to push into the middle of the board. One Knight stuck around on a backfield objective which is one of the problems the big model armies have in ITC – there is a lot of points being invested into bean counting objectives. All the Knights shot at a Serpent again and were able to knock off some wounds but the combined -2 from Vectored Engines and Craftworld bonus plus using Lightning Reflexes for a -3 on the weakened Serpent meant that while many wounds were taken, nothing died.
My opponent held an objective for 1 point.
Eldar Turn 2 –
My army started to push up the board at this point. My Banshees were next to useless in the remaining combats so jumped into a Serpent near the backfield objective and I remembered to move both of my Rangers squads this turn, getting one onto an objective and both into the necessary table quarters for Recon. My Serpents moved forward aggressively while the flyers started to circle the battlefield. I got Jinx off on the the right most Knight and then dumped all my firepower into it, turning it into a useless slag. The Dark Reapers used Fire and Fade again to stay hidden, not that it was strictly necessary given the lack of anti-infantry firepower available with my opponent’s army.
I held more objectives, killed more units, got a point for BGH, a point for Recon and three points for Titan Slayer which put me at nine points for the turn. I led my opponent 13 to 10 at the conclusion of Turn 2.
Knights Turn 3 –
The Knights moved backwards again, not putting any pressure on my but touching two objectives. Shooting saw some more wounds taken off a Wave Serpent but nothing destroyed as I used the Lighting Reflexes stratagem again.
My opponent received a point for holding an objective.
Eldar Turn 3 –
I started to become more aggressive with my army. First, I dropped the Banshees off and they chilled on the backfield objective while the Warlock who was holding his own, stuck his head out to cast Quicken on the dumped Wraithguard who hoofed it just into range. The Crimson Hunters flew across the board into the back right while the Hemlock danced around behind the Knights. Dark Reapers played peekaboo and the Rangers chilled quietly.
Despite the same shooting as before, the central most Knight did not die, staving off death with a couple of wounds left but I was in a very strong position board wise and game wise now.
I held more objectives, a bonus point for objectives and a point for Recon for 4 points. This extended my lead 17 to 11 at the conclusion of Turn 3.
Knights Turn 4 –
The Knights again pretty much stayed put though they finally brought down a Serpent, getting their first kill for the day (Magnus did all the other heavy lifting). The wounded Knight tried his luck against the Wraithguard in combat and promptly died but did punch two of them to death. Given their auto-hitting overwatch weapons and ability to walk out of combat and shoot, there was no benefit from trying to assault them despite the loses they took.
My opponent killed a unit and held an objective for two points.
Eldar Turn 4 –
Turn 4 saw more advancing with my midfield (Serpents and Wraithguard) while the flyers turned around and sped up the left flank. The Dark Reapers exposed themselves and did not Fire and Fade for the final time and the Hemlock again got Jinx off on the final Knight to ensure it died. My shooting eliminated him and the game was over sans scoring.
For Turn 4, I held more objectives, the bonus for objectives held, killed the final unit and more than my opponent, got the final BGH points and Titan Slayer points and a point for Recon for 9 points. This extended my lead 26 to 13. I then received four points for each remaining turn and the final Recon point based upon the tabling rules in the mission pack to go to 35 to 13. Apparently, these tabling rules were different depending upon who you asked but this was what was in the player pack.
My army has no real issue with these type of armies despite Desc’s concerns relating to its ability to have enough anti-multiwound model firepower. This was compounded by my opponent sending Magnus out by himself and not following up with the Imperial Knights. While I would have been quite comfortable in my knowledge of the victory even if this did occur, it would have made the game a lot closer and not allowed me to dictate the engagements as much. My opponent was admittedly new so we discussed this after the game but, his army struggles a lot in ITC missions by giving up easy secondaries, not having chaff units to hold objectives and generally finding it hard to deal with some of the common armies out there right now (notably, Eldar). Because of this, I was able to pick a target a turn and delete it and the return firepower was not enough to really take out multiple units in conjunction with Lightning Reflexes (I lost one Serpent and some Wraithguard to shooting in the end). A lot of my firepower did not need to reposition itself (notably the Dark Reapers and Rangers) while my Serpents and Flyers moved up the board to ensure pressure on all objectives and achieving the mission bonus.