I recently finished painting the last of my miniatures from the Forgebane box for Warhammer 40,000 that featured forces of Adeptus Mechanicus and Necrons. It served as a starting point for both of those armies for me. I started painting with the Necrons and expanded them out to a 1000 point Nephrekh Dynasty army. For the Adeptus Mechanicus side, I combined the miniatures with the skitarii from the Kill Team starter and one of the big knights from Imperial Knight: Renegade to put together an army from the Mars forge world and House Taranis of the Questor Mechanicus that I’m still in the progress of painting.

To celebrate finishing the Forgebane box, I decided to play through the three narrative missions included in it. These tell the story of an Adeptus Mechanicus expedition to gather blackstone deposits from the awakening tomb world of Amontep II. The canonical version of the story has Magos Dominus Dentrex Ologostion leading a mixed force from Mars and House Raven against Sautekh Dynasty forces led by the cryptek Agdahax the Technomandrite, but I decided to play with my own characters and subfactions.

Mars

  • HQ: Forge Lord Anatoli Garova (Tech-Priest Dominus)
    • Warlord Trait: Necromechanic
    • Arcana Mechanicum: Phosphoenix
  • Troops: Unit 3-Theta-1 (5 Skitarii Rangers w/ 2 arc rifles)
  • Troops: Unit 3-Theta-5 (5 Skitarii Rangers w/ 2 transuranic arquebuses)

House Taranis

  • Lord of War: Lady Oksana Zharkhov in Rust Hound (Armiger Warglaive w/ heavy stubber)
  • Lord of War: Sir Irinei Kaslov in Heretic’s Bane (Armiger Warglaive w/ meltagun)

Nephrekh Dynasty

  • HQ: Solarian Khemet (Cryptek)
    • Warlord Trait: Skin of Living Gold
    • Artefact of the Aeons: The Solar Staff
  • Troops: Immortals
  • Elites: Lychguard
  • Fast Attack: Canoptek Wraiths

Mission 1: Ambush in the Dunes

In the endless red dunes of Amontep II, Forge Lord Anatoli Garova was personally overseeing a small search party scanning the area for deposits of blackstone. While they were deep in the wastes, the tech-priest’s skitarii bodyguard alerted him to the presence of foul xenos. The soulless creatures known as necrons had emerged from the dunes and surrounded the small group from Mars. As the xenos attacked, a skitarii ranger went down to gauss blasts while the insect-like constructs cut their way through the other unit of rangers. Soon the tech-priest was alone in melee against the phasing constructs. In the end, even his formidable skill and omnissian axe were not enough to fend off the assault.

Result: Necrons victory

Notes: Canoptek wraiths are scary and fast. The Adeptus Mechanicus force would have been better off deploying as close to the immortals as possible to put more space between them and the wraiths.

Mission 2: The Threat Revealed

After being rescued from his initial encounter with the necrons by skitarii reinforcements, Forge Lord Anatoli Garova was determined to seize control of the nearby blackstone deposit. He sent a priority order summoning additional reinforcements from House Taranis to his location, but the necrons arrived first under the cover of a dust storm. The skitarii of Unit 3-Theta-1 bravely moved to protect the tech-priest and paid dearly as they fell to gauss blasts, transdimensional beams, and hyperphase swords. The phasing wraiths charged into the tech-priest and tore into his cybernetic body, but he managed to cling to life as redundant systems kicked in and allowed him to fall back.

Two knight armigers from House Taranis then arrived to turn the tide of battle. The mighty war machines engaged the necron immortals and the wraiths as they approached. Inspired by the arrival of the knights, the skitarii of Unit 3-Theta-5 ignored the charging lychguard and took out Solarian Khemet, the leader of the necron force, with a pair of well-placed shots from their transuranic arquebuses.

The lychguard managed to overpower the remaining skitarii and the tech-priest, but the bold knights of House Taranis fought on. Lady Oksana’s Rust Hound fought valiantly against the canoptek wraiths even though her chain cleaver struggle to connect to the phasing constructs. Meanwhile, Sir Irinei’s armiger, Heretic’s Bane, cut through the necrons that had sought to hold the blackstone deposit and claimed it for the priesthood of Mars.

Result: Adeptus mechanicus victory

Notes: Wraiths are hard to kill. Their 3+ invulnerable save negates a lot of attacks so that even a knight armiger was struggling to do damage. Skitarii on the other hand haven’t been able to hold off the necrons in either game so far to keep the tech-priest from being killed.

Mission 3: The Rising Necropolis

After the knights of House Taranis captured the blackstone deposit and repelled the necron attack, Forge Lord Anatoli Garova regained consciousness and loaded the precious material onto a grav-conveyor so that it could be moved toward a waiting dropship and transported to his orbiting ship.

As another dust storm blew across the wastes, the necrons began a fresh assault in an attempt to reclaim the blackstone. Gauss blasts struck down the tech-priest’s skitarii bodyguards while the canoptek wraiths phased forward and struck him down with their vicious claws. The lone skitarii still on his feet grabbed the grav-conveyor’s controls and fell back while the two House Taranis knights annihilated the wraiths with their thermal lances.

Solarian Khemet led his phalanx of immortals forward as another trio of canoptek wraiths phased upward from the tomb city hidden beneath the dunes. The brave skitarii dodged gauss blasts and transdimensional beams while urging the grav-conveyor’s machine spirit to hurry, but the brilliant beams of energy released by the cryptek’s arcane staff cut him down.

The other skitarii unit rushed forward in a last ditch effort to retrieve the sample, but they fell to the xenos’ weapons before they could even reach the grav-conveyor. The Forge Lord’s mission to Amontep II had failed.

Result: Necron victory

Notes: The wraiths were once again the star for the necrons. The stratagem to allow them to advance and charge plus the Nephrekh dynastic code make them incredibly fast and let them get into melee and kill off the tech-priest during their first turn. Their invulnerable saves failed them this time though, and the knight’s thermal lances do a scary amount of damage.

Conclusion

The necrons won the campaign with the forces of Mars being unable to extract blackstone from the world of Amontep II. I had fun playing the small narrative battles, and I want to try to get in some more narrative campaigns. The canoptek wraiths and armiger warglaives were the stars for their respective forces. The skitarii rangers on the other hand felt outclassed by the necron immortals, lychguard, and wraiths. They went down quick in each battle with only the transuranic arquebuses doing much damage.

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