Monday, January 20, 2020

Battle Report: Aeronautica Imperialis- Operation: Hemlock

As part of Operation: Hemlock Ork forces had migrated out of the Green Zone and started to infest and take-over the island of Baron's Rest. Thankfully, the Ork efforts were disorganized and ad hoc with warbands racing around fighting humans, gathering slaves, racing each other, and infighting for dominance. This gave PDF forces from TaskForce: Sword time to secure and reinforce the militia of Camp Hope(Less) to drive off the Ork raiders.

Most of the Ork forces have been building makeshift camps near and around Look-Out Pointe on the South side of Baron's Rest. These camps are rival Ork warbosses and their boys. Taskforce: Thorn and their Syndicate allies have managed to keep the flow of new Orks to Baron's Rest bottled up.

Taskforce: Chalice was having less success securing the airspace. In addition, rifts were forming between the PDF air crews and their Imperial Navy counterparts. Despite these growing difficulties, Taskforce: Chalice was determined to assist their fellows on Baron's Rest. General Kurtz determined that a long range bomber campaign from the Air PDF would be helpful. Every Ork killed in camp would make Taskforce: Sword's job easier.

Heavy, 4-engine Peacemaker bombers were scrambled from North Ammoriss. They took a long flight across Greater Ammoriss to Da' Deff Islands. Once in Da' Deff Island air space, PDF sentry aircraft greeted them to escort them to Baron's Rest. From there, they set course for the target zone.

Meanwhile, Grot spotterz on Look-Out Pointe observed the incoming bombers. They quickly called it into Boomgobz headquarters in the Green Zone. Quickly, Ork aircraft that were sitting on the tarmac were scrambled to intercept.


Ammoriss Air PDF
2 Peacemaker Bombers
2 Sentry Fighters w/Weapon Load
1 Sentry Eyes

Snaz Boomgobz Air Boyz
2 Dakkajets
3 Ork Fightas
3 Grot Buzzaz

This will be a bombardment mission. There are several small Ork buildings scattered across the desert. Each building is between 1 to 4 hits depending on ow many parts it is. The PDF are trying to destroy the Ork habitations.

The Ork settlements are placed 24 inches in from a short edge and in 12 from the long edge. The Imperials are coming in on the short edge at high-altitudes and full speed, which is not very fast for heavy, 4-engine bombers. The Orks on the other side were at various heights and speeds.

Turn 1:
Initiative: Imperial

There is no subtlety in the Imperial approach. They come straight on, with the bomber's at full speed and high altitude. A mass of Ork aircraft come rise up to meet them head-to-head. It is a disturbing amount of dakka in front of the Imperial bombers.


Turn 2:
Initiative: Imperials

The Imperials keep moving into the teeth of the Ork advance. The leader bomber drops altitude to create some separation with its brother. However, many of the Ork aircraft key in on the first bomber, things look bad for them as Buzzaz, Fightas, and Dakka Jets home in on it.

The Sentry fighters try to come on off the edge, but they seem little use against the swarm of Ork craft. Meanwhile, the Sentry Eyes power dives under the Ork advance and moves towards an outlying settlement. No Orks seem to worry about what they are doing.

The Gunners on the lead Peacemaker open fire at the oncoming Ork horde, and manage to take out the lead Ork Fighta. The pilot ejects as his ramshackle craft loses power and drops from the sky trailing smoke.

The Dakkajet2 tries to sustain fire on the bombers but fail. Meanwhile, Sentry 1 fires a Skystrike at Fighta 1. The missile explodes close by but fails to damage the Ork craft. Dakkajet 1 manages to score damage on the big lead bird.

Sentry 2 also fires at long range with a skystrike on Buzza 3. The shot is true and the little Grot plane is blown from the sky. The little blighter never saw it coming.

Fighta 1 leans into the trigger and stitches Peacemaker 1 with boles. However, the plane only loses 1 hit. The rest of the Ork aircraft fire at will and fail to cause additional damage. Peacemaker 1 is still flying!

Turn 3:
Initiative: Imperials

The lead Bomber continues to the target area, and goes a bit lower. Her fellow stays high. Meanwhile, the Orks scramble around to try and get back on their tail. The Sentry's come racing into the swarm, and it looks like there is going to be a big dust-up at high-altitude.

Meanwhile, the Sentry Eyes hits the hard deck and turns towards the target area. No one seems to interested in the little recon bird.

With a Dakkajet all over him, Sentry 2 fires on Fighta 1, but misses. A spray of fire from Dakkajet two kills the pilot of Sentry two and sends the plane crashing into the ground.

Fire from PeaceMaker 1 sprays Dakkajet 1 who is on their tail and causes him to blow smoke. In return, the Ork leans into his triggers and sustain fires on the big bomber. Ork shells whizz straight through the Bomber as bullets riddle the plane, but nothing vital is hit. The Emperor is with us! Sentry 1 finishes off the Dakkajet with a spray of close range Auto-cannon fire. The pane goes down, but a ragged looking chute follows it as the Ork ejects.

Fighta 2 gives the peacemaker a sustained burst. Again the big bomber is riddled with shells, but this time some avionics are hit and reduce the plane to 3 hits left.

Peacemaker 2 is spraying heavy bolter shells around the sky but failing to hit any Ork craft.

Turn 4:
Initiative: Orks

Tailing Fire:
Fighta 2 opens up on PeaceMaker 1 and causes the PDF bomber to start blowing smoke. She only has two hits left. The Ork also uses Advanced Tailing to reveal that the bomber is using Maneuver 1. The Ork does not change his maneuver card.

The Peacemakers stay on course, while the Sentry tries to get the drop on the tailing Ork fighters. The Dakkajet 2 manages to get a bead on PeaceMaker 2.

No one seems to be paying any attention to the recon fighter. The Buzzas are out of position but may be a factor next turn.

Fighta 2 uses the last of his ammo to try and finish his prey, Peacemaker 1. The Orks shots are true as two of the bombers 4 engines are shredded by the Ork pilot. The PDF crew know their bird is done for and manage to bail out as she begins to start to bank and then tumbles into the ground below.

Peacemaker 2's ball turret manages to snag Fighta 1 and cause it to blow smoke. The Dakka Jet 2 manages a sustained burst but the shot go under the high flying Bomber.

Sentry 1 fires on the smoking fighta 1, but fails to bring it down.

The Sentry Eyes manages to snap a long range Pict-capture of the Ork encampments. +1 VP!

Turn 5:
Initiative: Orks

Tailing Fire:
Dakka jet 2 uses Tailing Fire on PeaceMaker 2. The shots strike home and the bird is hit! They reveal it is going to do a 1 maneuver.

Ork aircraft converge on the Peacemaker as its shadow falls across the Ork forts below. This is it!

Fighta 1 uses a sustained burst and knocks one more hit off the PeaceMaker. The defense turrest spray out at Dakkajet 2, but the pilot jinks around the incoming fire. The Ork returns fire but all the jinking causes him to only hit home for one more hit. 3 left!

Sentry 1 fires on the Dakkajet 2 but misses. He is out of ammo.

The grot Buzza closing on the bomber fires and fails to cause any additional damage, even with a sustained burst. He is out of ammo.

The Sentry Eyes fails to get a pict-capture and a strafing run on a building fails to damage it.

Turn 6:
Initiative: Orks

The greenskins might still be able to down the big bird with Tailing Fire and Initiative!

Tailing Fire:
The Dakka Jet uses the last of its ammo, and shoots up the Peaceamaker, reducing it to 1 hit! Advanced Tailing reveals it will be using a 1.

Fighta 2 and Dakka Jet 2 try to break-off and disengage. They are out of ammo. Sentry 1 voxes good luck to the crew of PeaceMaker 2 and also tries to disengage.

Fighta 1 and Buzz1 close in on the heavily damaged and smoking PDF bomber. The Buzza is out of ammo.

Meanwhile, Buzza 2 tries to swoop in and chase down the Recon fighter, but over shoots the target a bit.

Peacemaker 2 has 1 hit left, and Fighta 1 can shoot first! He can down with 8 dice and the last of its ammo. We all hold our breathe as the dice are rolled.....

3 hits. Now they need 1 to be 5+. The PDF crew cross their fingers.

Wooh! That was close!

The Bombardier hits the release button and a rain of explosive steel and death begins to drop from the belly of the bomber. Explosions tear up the Ork forts as the bombs strike with deadly accuracy. 11 Damage from the barrage blasts flesh, steel, and earth high into the air.

In addition, turret fire from the Peacemaker manages to destroy Fighta 1, but the pilot ejects successfully.

The Sentry Eyes fails to strafe any further buildings and does not capture an updated pict.

Wow! What a great game! That is why I love AI!

We called it there since no one was in a position to do anything meaningful after the successful bombing run. There was no way the Orks could win, since the bombing run alone netted the Imperials 110 Victory Points. Even with downing a Bomber and a Sentry that would not be nearly enough.

PDF Victory!

Flight Officer Harmon gripped the control yoke tighter than he ever had before. Even with the help of his co-pilot, his bird was kicking like an enraged Grox. He glanced down at his controls, but most of them were useless and busted up. Ork shells had blasted them apart and ventilated the roof of his cockpit. The air crew were all lucky to be alive. He intended to keep it that way.

The landing strip loomed ahead. It wasn't nearly big enough for his bomber, but it was the closest thing to a landing field on Baron's Rest. There was no way he was going to get back to North Ammoriss so this would have to do. The landing strip was too small, but at least most of the area around it was just flat, barren, desert. It would be easy for them to skid across it on her belly.

Preparing to put down the gear.”

Don't bother Vic. It won't help.” Harmon said, “I need you to keep your hands on the controls.”

Harmon feathered back the engines. The chortled and choked, causing the air frame to buck. He pulled the his hand of the stick for a flash to click on the intercom.

Crash positions!”

The PeaceMaker came thundering down onto the small air strip. A harsh screech and the cry of twisting metal filled the air. Immediately, the frame twisted and buckle as it decelerated faster than it had ever slowed before. The ball turret beneath was smashed to pieces. Searing pain gripped Harmon as the crash restraints tightened and held him as the craft jerked and crunched.

The wings of the air frame quickly gave way and shredded themselves on the unyielding ground. The fuselage snapped and broke. The various components tumbling out into the desert. The metal buried itself deep into the sand and hung itself up on the rocks.

Harmon awoke, the sun glaring into his face. Stiffly and with searing pain he managed to unlock his crash restrains and fall out of the command chair. In a haze, he looked across and saw Vic unstrapping himself as well. They had lived.

Another successful mission......

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