Conflict! Squats versus Tyranids, Because You Can’t Just Eat A Space Dwarf’s Homeworld and Expect No Blowback

Some time back, the Middling took it upon himself to set his pride for the stuntie races against the Great Devourer commanded by Tastytaste, in a 40k narrative campaign scenario “Leviathan Rising” which pits an Imperial force versus a Tyranid force of Hive Fleet, (you guessed it) Leviathan. Seeing as a long-running (apocryphal) story of what happened to the Squats and why they no longer feature prominently in the 40k canon has to do with a humorous (if unofficial) response from an employee of Games Workshop as the consumption of the Squat home-worlds by Great Devourer. In spite of the questionable canonical-ness of this specific fate of the greatest race of the Grimdark, Squats never miss a chance to settle a grudge, real or imagined! IMG_3510 For this scenario, the Squats were “counts-as’d” by Codex: Space Marine with Imperial Guard allies. The force relied upon quick mobility including many counts as Land Speeder Storms and three Storm Talons. A high vantage offers the squat forces in their defensive posture, as they await the imminent attack by bio-engineered xenos. IMG_3515 Above you can see old Armorcast/Epicast Termites (counts-as LS Storms), Squat Hearthguard in Exo-armour (Counts-as Terminators), and led by a Squat Warlord in Exo-Armour (counts-as ChapterMaster), and a council of advisors (Counts-as Librarian). In the bottom center, we can see the squat hearthguard converted-mining robot (counts-as Dreadnaught). IMG_3516 The Tyranids deploy along several flanks. IMG_3517 From the xenos-eye-vantage, one can see the gyrocopter hovering above the Squat defenders . IMG_3519 The Tyranid Hive Tyrant and hormaguants outflank behind the Squats. They’re surrounded.   IMG_3520 Are those shooti-fexes at the top of the photo? IMG_3522 Genestealers appear on a third flank. While the squats are defenders in this situation, they take an aggressive strategy and launch out to meet the Tyrandis before they are trapped. IMG_3524 The Squats split their forces, sending a the robot and rapid-response contingent is sent to address the lictors, ravenors, and warriors on the Eastern section of the battlefield. The second force of squat brotherhood (counts-as Imp. Guard veterans) advance supported by a Chimera tank to meet the force of genestealers on the third, South-Western flank. IMG_3525 The squats encounter heavy resistance, as a tunneler is destroyed by heavy lictor biorganic projectiles. Squat cyber-berzerkers and boars (counts-as space marine scouts) dismount and take cover in the river. IMG_3526 Their safety is short-lived as they are pounced on by the lictor. IMG_3531 The forces of squats advance, as brotherhood warriors screen their Warlord, Exo-armoured Hearthguard, and a lesser squat lord (Counts as Imp. Guard Lord Inquisitor) IMG_3522 The genestealers are in the open. Will their fleet of claw carry them into melee before they are gunned down in a hail of fire? IMG_3528 Nope. Their charge falls short and they are gunned down in a hail of las-gun, bolter, storm bolter, and psychic fire. Eradicated to the last xenos.   IMG_3529 The Heathguard’s converted-mining robot (dreadnaught) is assaulted by a horde of tyranid guants, who are unable to harm it, but tie it up. It’s power-clamp begins to chew through a few models a turn. IMG_3531 The forces of squats advance, as brotherhood warriors screen their Warlord, Exo-armoured Hearthguard, and a lesser squat lord (Counts as Imp. Guard Lord Inquisitor) IMG_3533 Behind them the Hive Tyrant and his Tyrant Guard advance menacingly. IMG_3535 A second squat termite is destroyed by a unit of Tyranid warriors, but only after the warriors are nearly annhilated by the fearsome (and some would say “overpowered”) strafing run of the Squat mini-copters (counts-as Storm Talons). IMG_3536 Another round of shooting anhilates   IMG_3537 Having cleared the flank of genestealers, the squat infantry forces split, the Brotherhood warriors advancing across the bridge, and the Hearthguard, Living Ancestor and Squat Warlord set to fford the river over a break in the defensive wall. IMG_3538 After a short range-fire fight, the Squat Warriors kill the lone remaining warrior. IMG_3540 The Carnifexes shooting cripples and immobilize the chimera. IMG_3541 The Heathguard mining robot finally finishes off the hormagaunt swarm and looks to the threat of remaining lictors. IMG_3542 The squat warriors take cover in a forest, denying their biomass from the Tyranids. Meanwhile, the gyro-copters zoom away from the battlefield, to make another attack run.   IMG_3543 The lictors dive into cover, making use of their chameleon camouflage. IMG_3547 But the robots shooting destroys them regardless. IMG_3544 The short-legged squats in exo-armour wade slowly through the water (rolling “1,1” on the difficult terrain check) IMG_3545 The remaining tyranid forces advance… IMG_3546 The true horrors of the hive-fleet are thus-far unharmed, and they are ready to turn the tide of the battle against the squats. IMG_3548 The ‘fexes advance onto the bridge, while the hormagaunts assault the crippled chimera in force… The ‘fexes unload their devestating attack of twin-linked devourers destroying the Hearthguard robot in an instant. IMG_3549 In a fit of luck and tactical acumen,the squat’s psychic Living Ancestor reaches into the warp and weakens the Tyranid’s fortitude, halving the Carnifexes toughness statistic, just as the Squat Warlord calls in a remote barrage (from a nearby Squat Colossus, no doubt) and the STR 10 orbital strike (a Chapter Master ability) lands true and devestatingly (doubling their reduced toughness of 4/5  and causing ‘Instant Death’), eradicating the two Tyranid carnifexes and one tryant guard in one shot. A devastating attack that halts the Tyranids counter-attack.   IMG_3550 Meanwhile, the gaunts finally destroy the chimera, only to be mostly eradicated in the ensuing explosion. The few remaining are gunned down in bolter fire by the Hearthguard, as they swing back around to engage the   IMG_3552 The Squat Warlord and his retinue advance, killing off the last Tyrant bodyguard and prepare to charge. IMG_3553 They engage the horrific monstrosity in combat, as powerfist, thunderhammer and force weapon meets bonesword and lash whips. IMG_3556 A challenge is issued and the Squat Warlord meets the Tyrant in single combat… IMG_3557 …and felling it with a final blow of his thunderhammer, winning the day for the squats, and avenging the slight against their species honor, erroneous and imagined even as it was.

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