Shattergrounds

Infinity

Black Sky - Mission 4 - Always one last op

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Ariadna
Trash Pander
VS Nomads
Wawoul

“Allied, Boss?” Moll asked raising a questioning eyebrow as she lay across her bike

“Aye, that’s right, Allied, it went through last night, but the op continues.” The shake in my hand had dulled for the moment by some wonder drugs Haqqislam doctors had provided, but as I wiped my rifle down again i could still feel it, maybe it was a subconscious thing, living with pain for so long it can become familiar.

Moll traced along the fresh scar she had picked up from our last scrap against CA forces , it ran from the bottom of her chin splitting her lip and ending just under her eye, The haqq docs had said they could mend it, hide it so it was like new, but that wasnt moll “and uh. Does command know about the op continuing?”

“Don’t know, comms went down after I received word” I said as i dumped the rag over the pair of wire cutters i had left out on my toolbox,

If she noticed she said nothing, “Fair enough, Boss, just be sure whatever it is your up to, that its worth it.” She stalked off leaving me alone.

Would it be worth it? I’ve incited rebellions on Okolnir, stabbed our supposed allies in the back, cut down alien troopers, made peace with haqq to get access to tech you couldn’t dream of on dawn and now we were about to go out and hit the nomads here. The ink still wasn’t dry on the peace treaty,

Of course it was worth it, there is a saying here in black sky, “we would die for dawn, but we would rather kill for it” it means we don’t just sit around waiting for some glorified last stand, we go out and hunt, pit threats down before they became one,

I didn’t stop there though, I had placed myself as a local savior, hero to the ariadnans, friend of the QCC and bane of pano forces,

All to get a shot at one man.

“Boss, we are ready to move” Molls voice crackled in over short range comms, last piece of the puzzle, like last time i was the one that brought the nomads here, risking the lives of everyone in black sky, didn’t matter, it needed done

Tactical concerns, deployment

Vanilla nomads euggh, im not overly concerned about any potential gml, its not as worth it vs ariadna I find. Even our tag is pretty cheap and can take a few hits but thankfully wawoul didnt take one, although he mentioned he wants to next time……haha

My real concern is the chimera, that thing will smash the ac2 apart in a few bonks, I hold back uxia to counter drop it, a crazy play i know but every order not spent getting to the ac2 the better,

I also set up a crossroads of fire with my metros, armand, chernobog and liberto in hopes of making it difficult to get to

Deployment

Nomad Deployment

Starting at the top left we have,

Kriza borak tucked away in the corner, A reaktion zond on the roof beside it and a digger watching the backline on the off chance I've managed to hide van zant, the building in front of the left hand side panoply there is a moran with koala represented by that camo token and a moderator on the top floor, Morlock next to it to the building in bright red there

In the centre billie sits behind the AC2, Samsa (using khodahli as a model) sit in front, to billies left that 4 man group there is the chimera, the evader is sitting just infront, There is a moderator pron on the building just right of them, in the small little building its very hard to see is another moran with a koala inside, far to the right sit a jaguar and jazz sits in the crook of that container at the top right, giving some serious repeater coverage,

Ariadna deployment
at the far bottom left is a desperado, UKR sits just in front of him and the metro panzerfaust is the camo token its just out of the koalas range there, Rokot in the room to the right of the desperado,

On the roof of my large cetnre building, is a mekanik, her mine is that red dot behind my AC2
behind the building is a volunteer and bearpode handler, the bear pode isn't on the roof its inside the building ready to doge out and start fighting, in front of my AC2 is a liberto, that black box is the liberto the camo token the mine, Chernobog to the right, my rokot LT beside him round the corner beside that container, another metro camo token to the far right and an irmandihno just out of shot on the right, I forgot to put his little robot down before I took this pic but it goes in b2b with the cherno

Wawouls final drop is the chimera and mines is uxia, I place her right on top of that building, kissing wawouls deployment edge and land her.

Turn 1 nomads,
I strip two orders from the chimeras order pool,
Wawoul decides not to spend the impet on the chimera, the white moderator there is also the lt so is worried about any template shenanigans. He tries to discover with a jaguar and the non lt moderator and fails both rolls, samsa (kodahli) tries it and also fails, finally wawoul spends the irreg order and just moves the chimera, I hit mode with uxia and beat the smoke dodge knocking it uncon, samsa then stands up, I smoke dodge but uxia just goes uncon. Finally the evader moves around picks up the chimera, then the chimera moves up and inside a building ready to strike turn 2.
Some other shuffling around and the moran throws out another mine.

Turn 1 ariadna
What a great turn for me, I’m down one uxia and that’s it, I move my cherno bog round the corner getting into a firefight with the reaktion zond, im in 33″ range so fail but I shuffle forward, then take another shot, putting it straight to dead on my second shootout with it.

Desperado having used its impet order has the speed to do some real damage, it moves forward, dodges the koala mine, opens the box to get dcharges, i tear down the middle road forcing a dodge from the morlock who stands up, only to be gunned down by armand, I keep going ignoring the ac2 and set sights on the chimera, burst 5 auto pistols do the trick, I also got spotlit at some point. i have 2 orders left so decide to just bonk the ac2 with one attack then try kill something else,

That was the plan anyway as I roll a 20 to hit making the desperado crit, wawoul rolls the saves and makes 1…. meaning I blow up the box…..

This is going very well…I edge round the corner to shoot at billie and evader but they both dodge or make their saves,
Lastly I jam the libertos shotgun through the window after dodging the koala and kill the moran next to the right hand side panoply

Turn 2 tactical analysis,
Turn 1 is going very well, ive got the ac2 wrecked and tied up on panolpies, killed the best nomad ac2 killers and did a good amount of damage to the order pool, really all i need to do is just go ham on my second turn, move some stuff up to make sweet unboxing videos and score net undermine, thats..... not how its gonna go though thats for sure. my luck is about to seriously turn

Nomads turn 2
The digger makes a mad dash for the ac2 but dies to armand as he passes across,

Then comes carlotta, she sky dives into my depolyment zone, kills a volunteer, a rokot and the cheeky tomcat turns round the corner to my irmamdihno who has been dodging this whole time to get closer to her, and drops a flame template on irmandihno and the metro i decided to idle with instead, the irmandihno drops his template, at the end of it the metro burned out straight to dead, the irmandihno who did i mentioned rolled a 20 on his booty roll, went uncon, was really looking forward to hmg irmandihno... :(

Some more minor shuffling ensues the evader kills the desperado.

Ariadna turn 2,

Welp, im in LOL... i spend the chernobogs order shooting at carlotta, who wounds my cherno, then i move up and drop the double chest mine on her taking her out,

I spend the bears order moving him over to the building, o12 prestige to get him up there where he kills samsa, flip another order to throw a grenade at billie, hitting him and the evader as i keep moving then flip another order to fight the evader but i just dont manage to kill it, samsa also did a wound with the plasma rifle when he chain rifled him

I move ukr forward then put him into suppressing fire, i make a huge mistake here, i moved armand over to the right hand side of the lane to get a shot at the morlock in turn 1. meaning he cant actually see all of the lane now and forgot to move him back to cover it.

Turn 3 tactical analysis,

Okay its fine, i salvaged turn 2 but i really wanted rid of that evader, nevermind I say, should be fine

Nomads turn 3
Kriza moves back and shoots the bear, takes two orders but gets it out of there,
Now the absolute hero of the hour, the evader starts moving, he gets to the midline with something like 4ish orders, its all or nothing now, he rolls out, dodges all the mines and the shot from the chernobog, next order moves out of los and shoots the spitfire at the cherno wins the face to face roll but does 0 damage, last order, out of los of everything until it moves into b2b with ac2, he moves into b2b metro panzerfaust shoots and misses, evader, ccs the ac2 and crits….

I hold the dice in my hand, “do it….” wawoul says, i roll, we do the awkward counting in our heads, 2 wounds, 2 saves. I had proper games sweats there. Space Jesus that was too dam close, the desperate plays are always the most successful and had he one more order he would have cracked it

Ariadna turn 3
I move the ukr back an inch and drop the evader, move the ukr around open the box, move the ukr around again to kill the kriza purely for the sake of vengeance, I could potentially get some stuff into box range to open up but still having a janky board set up, that’s a little to low our backs were done.

Scores 7-3 In Ariadnas favor,

Post Game Analysis

Phew that could have went seriously wrong and felt a lot closer than the scores show, considering one successful arm save swung it, i
Enjoy looting and sabotage, but I don’t really like how it scores.
I forgot to count the orders round 1 to piece together carlotta being in play, silly mistake,

I also should have moved armand back to contest the evader run and just use his irreg order in turn two to do that but I forgot

Lack of midfield presence, im really missing my beloved brigette (fem model I use for bruant) the spitfire in the midfield is always so clutch, but I’m not sure how i would work it in without losing the defensive coverage of the metros?

Always remember guts rolls, totally forgot a good few times. They are too handy.

Onto the positives,
Desperados continue to surprise me, 7pts is such incredible value, but I think they really shine when supported by something like armand to put down threats that pop out, I’m thinking armand or bruant set up on the same line is vital to deal with chain rifles.

Bear obviously just kills things, but I really like him being alive for opponents turn 2, by existing he takes up head space,

Uxia, this isn’t the first time I’ve super infiltrated uxia specifically to sit in front of a target, last time it was atalanta and the aleph player spent 4-5 orders digging her out, its a really strong play in very specific circumstances, I think its only worth it though if you can waste maybe 3-4 orders on it, plus the 2 from a stripped command tokens it isn’t bad to stall out a turn potentially,

Liberto, what can I say, couldn’t leave home without it, the high dodge him and the bear offer you are a really good defensive tool if your ac2 gets smoked

Finally, armand, something always kept me away from him, but I’m really coming round to him, I’ve used him in two games as a horizontal aro unit, the second wound really helps against my favorite kind of unit to deal with msv snipers, libertos and camo skirmishers with templates. Hopefully he takes only the 1 wound then drop him prone.

Only two changes I would have made was moving armand back to get a full lane and placing the rokot on a roof or beside another template weapon

Army lists

I'm pretty happy with how this list is running, I normally have way more offensive units but for L&S you really have to knuckle down and take a few defensive options,

I'm tempted on swapping out the mekahnik for ariadna excellent beast hunter but managing my irregular order starts to get more and more difficult, I could potentially drop the desperado for a volunteer to swing me back then take the beasthunter?

Wawouls army list, I dragged wawoul out of inifnity retirement for the last few games he hasn't really played since the plague and you can kinda see that in his army list, kriza used to be a total menace, but its taken a back seat to tags and gml as nomad attack pieces something he is still unsure about, but gml from n3 to n4 is night and day to be fair.

Carlotta aims to be the apple of my eye and I cant wait to get back into nomads to run her again.

Final point on my board setup, I still dont have a table and our local store was still closed, there is like 2 places in aberdeen that I know of that can host games, one is super toxic and the other closed, so we played on some carboard boxes i pulled from my loft haha, it made the dimensions slightly wider and shorter but i think it was fine.

IC

Agent Rake Personal log
I had everything I needed now, we had grabbed some kit from the nomad force directed here in no small part to myself, Ariadna didn't have the capabilities to source transmissions like they did,

Black sky used some seriously old tech to encrypt its signal sources. but I had cracked it, with a little help from my now dead friends, I slapped another dose on wonder drug into my arm, the shaking slowly fading in my arm, I had left the op as soon as it was over, heading over to montalban in the nomad ship they had arrived in, Nomad forces had secured the area allowing me to slip right passed their defences being too distracted by a pano retaliation effort,

good thing I had opened negotiations with them, letting slip a small communication to say that Ariadna agreed to a ceasefire and eventually an alliance with nomads, it split panos focus just enough to allow me access,

I moved along the corridor, a nice place, one of the countless mega hotels that were operating as a front, too much decadence for my liking, marble floors, sophisticated statues from ages past and staff far too friendly for my liking,

There it was, room 305, I looked around again, the place quiet, still, it was far too early in the morning for people like this to be awake, I pulled the door cracker I had picked up from that evader back on okolnir, it slotted over the lock and autonomous device got to work, it cycled through codes, cut alarms and scrambled the electronics inside,

It beeped green, My foot was already planting into the door swinging it open, almost taking it off its hinges, the room was pitch black, Instinct screamed at me to move, 2 shots wrung out from the corner of the room one catching me on the arm as moved in I didn't stop, I started firing, advancing on the gun fire trusting the tessium plate on my chest to keep me alive, the silenced rounds of my pistol spit as I fired at where flash from the muzzle had came from,

another round hammered through the air catching me full in the chest, it knocked the wind out of me and sent the my pistol skidding to the floor, "you dead Agent Rake?"
The voice called out from the other side of the room, I couldn't reply yet, I needed a weapon in my hand I turned over crawling to my pistol, Reaching out, straining to grab it. A boot slammed down on my hand, the bones cracking as the other leg kicked the pistol away. barrel of the bullshot pistol resting on the back of my head,

"My dear agent, this is how you repay me for all that I have done for?" He tore the mask off my head and pulled me onto my back.

There he was, the man who had turned my life into a battlefield, First Agent Spheres honestly I didn't care about that I deserved it, but when, when she got involved, in the middle of his games, that was something I couldn't forgive,

I said nothing, he knew why I was here, I wonder how long he knew I was coming,
"always two steps behind Rake, what would you have done? eh? killing the head of black sky? your little games with the alliance will end tonight, Ill have your mug plastered on every newspaper and holoviewer on Dawn by morning and ill blame that alliance for it, they will be baying for blood, begging to return to pano support by the after...." another crack, Agent spheres body fell limp tumbling over the couch, one precision shot, I looked up,

"all right, Boss?" Moll asked as she swept the room, "real shame this, looks like we weren't in time to save Agent Sphere from that assassination attempt after all" She looked behind her, somewhere out in the corridor "all right dump em, we need to get out of here"

Red came into the room, on of the shasvasti class of combined slung over one shoulder, dumping it onto the floor, moll moved around the room, firing a few more rounds into agent sphere and around the room before tossing the pistol onto the floor infront of the shasvasti,

"Real shame that is," she looked over to me, pointing at the wound on my arm and sucking air through her teeth, "you should get that looked at, Boss" before giving me a hand up off the floor,

Lucky again.

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