Battle for the Cataclysm Forge
Built in the Dark Age of Technology, the Cataclysm Forge is a mysterious vagrant, a gigantic vessel that wanders the space lanes with no crew and no apparent purpose. Within its spherical hull lies entire biodomes overgrown with poisonous plantlife, endless corridors humming with power, and cavernous halls echoing with the footsteps of the doomed. It is said that at the heart of this ancient vessel lies a device capable of harnessing the power of a star. Over the millenia, many races have boarded the Cataclysm Forge in an effort to discover its secrets, only to suffer unexplained disasters aboard its ominous bulk. A year ago it hurtled out of the warp into an uninhabited system on the eastern fringe, and began broadcasting a message on all frequencies: "The Forge has awoken." Now the nearby races have come, in their disparate fleets, and boarded the great vessel to begin unlocking its secrets. Soon the halls will be dripping with the blood of the unlucky, as the struggle for the Cataclysm Forge begins…
Greetings heretics! So, my uni’s gaming society is doing an escalation league and I’m taking part. It’s the first one I’ve ever done so I’m pretty stoked. I decided therefore that I would write up as many of my battles as I could. Hopefully this should be getting a weekly update or so as the league progresses and you can watch my Emperor’s Children 17th Millenial (which at some point I will post the fluff up for) try to retake the Cataclysm Forge for the Imperium!
For those of you interested you can find the rules pack here.
Without further ado:
Decurion Iapetus, also called “Shipwright”, sat in the command throne of ‘Salaminia’s Virtue’. It was a temporary seat at best, at least until Captain Tiberius finished with his latest engagement planet-side. The fleet of the 17th hung in high orbit, ringing Graia. The Inquisition had ‘requested’ their presence here, although requested was not really the right words. They were free to refuse, but the Inquistion had not yet forgotten the sins of their father and brothers. On the planet below, the Captain of the 17 Millenial was eradicating another foetid tendril of their previous legion. Suddenly the Battle-ship shook as if struck. There had been no warning of this attack. “Fleetmaster, what the hell was that?” Iapetus growled. “I don’t know sir. There are no points of impact or breach. All sensors show we weren’t hit by anything.” Iapetus furrowed his brow further still. Then the screeching started. Erupting from every vox module and amplifier. “The Forge has awoken.” Over and over, Iapetus listened to it as it stabilized and sunk back into the silence. “Send a message to Captain Tiberius Fleetmaster.” Iapetus said, but his mind was clearly elsewhere.
“Saying what my Lord?”
“Tell him what we heard…” Iapetus voice began to trail off and the Fleetmaster his Astarte lord was no longer speaking to him “…The Forge has awoken. By the Emperor, I thought that thing was destroyed…”
Within a matter of weeks the forces of the 17th Millenial had mobilized to respond to the call. But it came to pass that they were not the only ones. This is a recording of the battles that the 17th Millenial engaged in order to try and claim the Cataclysm Forge…
Battle 1: Emperor’s Children vs Tyranids
Reluctant to deploy his forces en mass until he was certain of the exact nature of the threat, Captain Tiberius first deployed a small strike force consisting of several members of the Palatine Blade order lead by Prefector Jonathan, confident that they could perform such vital recon and visit death upon whatever foe they encountered. However, after losing contact with them on the edge of one of the biodomes, Captain Tiberius sent one of his most senior Veteran Sergeants, Quinto Marcellus, along with a small strike force of fourteen tactical marines, Apothecary Abdle and a heavy support squad lead by Sergeant Grythan armed with their formidable Volkite Culverins. They deployed on the edge of the living quarters, where Jonathan’s unit reported engaging several Tyranid life-forms. Sergeant Quinto, armed with his artificer armour and phoenix spear was determined to be a Paladin of Glory (Warlord trait).
As they entered the ruined city-scape the scraping of chitin and the build-up of psychic power was unmistakable. The tyranids were here. Their strike for consisted of a brood of 6 Tyranid Warriors, led by a Warrior Prime with a lash-whip and bone sword, a Zoanthrope and two Hive Guard who Sergeant Quinto would later discover had taken refuge in the building on the far side of the battlefield. Sergeant Quinto ordered squad Grythan to guard one of the wounded members of Jonathan’s strike force inside a ruined building. In doing so they discovered a Grav Wave Generator (mysterious objective). Sergeant Quinto led his cohort to the front of their Vanguard Deployment in order to meet the xeno menace head on.
The tyranids menace moved forwards, trying to claim the lives of Sergeant Quinto’s strike force. Acidic venom and devouring maggots from the Warrior brood sprayed squad Grythan, although it did nothing more than corrode the paintwork of their armour. The Zoanthrope attempted to blast Sergeant Quinto’s unit with a Warp Blast power but something, whether the force of will of Quinto’s unit or simply the foulness of its own xeno brand of sorcery, sent the blast wildly off course.
Now the Emperor’s Children returned fire. Wary of the power of the xeno creature, Sergeant Quinto moved his unit up to protect another member of Jonathan’s strike force, discovering with his corpse a Targeting Relay (mysterious objective). Using this technology, they open fired on the Zoanthrope. The psychic field protecting the creature was formidable, but a bolt shell still found its mark, wounding the creature. Squad Grythan wasted no time returning fire on the Warrior brood. Whereas their ceremite had been proof against the horrific bio-weapon of the Tyranids, the chitin of the xenos was no match for the energy beams of the squad’s Volkite Culverins, reaping two of their number.
The Zoanthrope, wounded, ducked into the ruined building in the centre. Another member of Jonathan’s strike force lay in a sus-a-membrane coma and was of no use to the Zoanthrope (Nothing of note – mysterious objective). The Warrior brood moved up, stumbling into a Scatterfield (mysterious objective) that another member of Jonathan’s strike force had used to conceal himself while he dealt with his own wounds.
The Warrior brood launched another salvo at squad Grythan, although now the Venom Cannon was no more and so Grythan only had to hold fast against the disgusting salvo of maggots, which were unable to pierce the Astartes armour. The sorcery of the Zoanthrope tried to force squad Grythan to the floor in fear, but their will held strong against such an onslaught.
Sergeant Quinto lead is squad toward the building, intent on pursuing their wounded and cowardly foe. However, since their quarry was hidden behind a wall, they opted to run rather than fire at their foe. Squad Grythan, by comparison, continued to attack the Warrior brood. This time their salvo killed all but the Warrior Prime.
Intent on getting out of the firing line of squad Grythan, the Warrior Prime headed for the central ruin. Perhaps he hoped that Sergeant Quinto’s squad would prove and easier meal. The Zoanthrope was determined to maim the members of squad Grythan in vengeance however. Turning its psychic might on the Astartes it unleashed another version of The Horror. However, whether by hubris in its own xeno sorcery or the wound inflicted on it by Sergeant Quinto’s unit, the Zoanthrope suffered a horrific brain haemorrhage and collapsed. This looked to be a perfect battle for the Emperor’s Children, until a member of Sergeant Quinto’s squad was impaled by a shard of bone almost the height of a man. The trajectory came from a building previously thought abandoned. Clearly, something was there and would need to be dealt with.
Apothecary Abdle could do nothing for their fallen brother save harvest his gene-seed. The blood of even one Astartes was more than these xenos scum was worth. Vengeance on their lips the entirety of Sergeant Qunito’s unit moved up to an opening in the central ruin. To evade the withering fire of Squad Grythan, the Warrior Prime had ducted behind a wall and was about to move into the ruin itself. As it did so, it met the barrels of 14 bolters who opened up with the full fury of the legion. The creature tried to dive back behind cover, but one wall was not enough to protect it from the wrath of the IIIrd Legion and in the end its bullet riddled corpse fell back, the Warlord slain.
Only the hive guard remained, fiercely guarding the prone form of Prefector Jonathan. However, without their synapse leaders they threatened to break away. However, apparently the need to exact vengeance for their slain comrades compelled them to unleash one more salvo into Sergeant Quinto’s unit. However, without the element of surprise on their side, their bone shafts failed to take the lives of any more Astartes.
After the massive expenditure of ammunition moments ago, Sergeant Quinto ordered his unit to advance at running pace toward where the final Tyranid beasts were held up. Squad Grythan bagan to fortify their landing position for further reinforcements.
No further fire was forthcoming from the beasts inside, but the sound of scuttling was unmistakable from the outside.
Sergeant Qunito’s unit approached a door on the side of the building. They could hear the sound of scuttling from the inside. The men looked back to their leader. “Children of the Emperor!” Veteran Sergeant Quinto shouted.
“Death to his foes!” the squad responded, drawing their chainswords and bolt pistols. They kicked down the door, piling into the ruined building. In the corner of the ruin, the two massive forms of the Hive Guard huddled liked scarred children. The patheticness of their form meant nothing to the Astartes. Blood had been spilt and it demanded avenging. Bolt pistols barked, wounding one of the beasts, but the other shrugged off the hits as if they were nothing. Moments later, the whole squad descended on two beasts, chainswords and phoenix spear cleaving off great hunks of meat. They tore the Hive Guard to pieces, slaying their last foe and securing victory.
In the aftermath, Veteran Sergeant Qunito watched as the strike force piled the corpses and burnt them. The Tyranids would not be allowed to have their bio-mass back. It was a poor recompense for the loss of Brother Alexio, but it was something. Apothecary Abdle was tending to the wounds of Jonathan’s strike force. Importantly, they had established a foot hold. Now the battle for the Cataclysm Forge could begin in ernest.