Army lists were both Brigade detachments (apologies if I get anything wrong in Alex' list)
HQ: Tempestor Prime, Castellan Creed, and I think the Salamander Command Tank?, Deathwatch Captain
Troops: 4x Infantry squads with Autocannons, 1x Tempestor squad with 2x plasma, Deathwatch squad
Elites: 4x plasma Tempestor Command Squad, Techpriest Enginseer, Astropath, Venerable Dreadnought w/lascannons and fist
Heavy Support: Wyvern, Basilisk, Manticore, Hydra
Fast Attack: 3x Autocannon armored sentinels
SHV: Hellhammer with 4x TL heavy bolters, 4x Lascannons, 1x Demolisher, 1x big ol gun
Transports: Twin Assault Cannon Razorback
HQ: Archon w/blaster, Succubus w/blast pistol, Haemonculus w/needle pistol and scissorhand
Troops: 4x Warriors with Blaster+Blast Pistol sergeant, wych squad with blast pistol and shardnet, wych squad with blast pistol and 3x hydra gauntlets
Elites: 2x Sslyth, Ur-ghul, Lhamean
Heavy Support: Ravager with 3x Lances, Talos w/ liquifiers and splinter cannons, Chronos
Fast Attack: 15x Hellions, 6x Reavers with blasters, 5x Scourges with blasters
Transports: Venom with twin splinter cannons, 4x raiders with 3x lances 1x disintegrator
We reset the deployment (which was easy, as it was just putting my transports back where they were) and ran the game as if Alex had not seized.
Dark Eldar turn 1, I elected to try and remove the unit buffing the ballistic skill of the Hellhammer rather than trying to hurt the tank itself, because I didn't feel like I could take it down to half HP in one turn. The Scourges dropped down, and they and the Reavers tried (and failed) to bring down the Salamander tank, leaving it with one wound remaining. The birds even pulled out a desperation charge, closed the gap but failed to put the last wound on the tank. Little did I know however, that Master Sergeant Hitchcock McSpeartotheface was just getting warmed up for his epic melee rampage...
Elsewhere on the map, the Hellions with their boosted drug-fueled speed were able to close with and completely surround the Razorback, bringing it down to 6 wounds, and my Lance fire took out the venerable dreadnought while poison took care of 2 infantry squads. In comparison to last game, this was a much better start.
Guard turn 1, the Baneblade opened up at full buffed-up power, blowing away 2 Raiders and half the Reaver squad, and leaving the Venom with a single wound. Unfortunately for Alex, that last wound on the Venom proved to be "the doozy" as it survived the full firepower of the manticore, basilisk, and the wyvern before Alex decided the dice didn't want him to kill that this turn and put some hurt on the Raiders carrying the wyches on the far flank. In the close combat phase, the Scourge sergeant succeeded in power lancing the Salamander to death and the Hellions hacked up the Razorback, insta-gibbing the occupants because they had nowhere to exit.
Dark Eldar turn 2, the hellions swap over to "Annoyance pattern" battle tactics, spreading out in a huge line to tie up both the Manticore and Hydra. A few models die to overwatch, but not much else happens. The Talos pain engine manages to make a long charge into an armored sentinel, but doesn't kill it. The Kabalite Warriors all line up behind a convenient bit of wall terrain and open up on the Baneblade with all their blasters, taking it down to 12 wounds, while the scourges opt to jump over the huge tank and attack the Astropath, finishing him off with a power spear to the face (glorious power spear sergeant melee kill count: 2)
Guard turn 2, repairs and repair stratagem bring the baneblade back to full fighting strength, and it finishes off the venom, wounds the Cronos pain engine, kills another two Reavers, three Scourges, and kills both Raiders transporting Wyches. Scions drop behind the xenos lines, blowing away the Ravager with their plasma guns and wounding the Haemonculus. Unfortunately, everything else is tied up in melee with hellions and pain engines and can't fire. The Techpriest, Creed, and Expendable Redshirt Guard Sergeant #12561 get ready to show off their sweet tae kwon do moves on the two remaining scourges. Guard sergeant charges first, and dies in overwatch to Scourge Sergeant's blast pistol (GPSSMKC: 3). Then, the Techpriest charges, and takes 3 wounds from the same blast pistol. After the Techpriest kills the one remaining Scourge mook, I use the melee interrupt stratagem to get one more melee round out of the scourge sergeant and he does not disappoint, taking out the Techpriest for a final GPSSMKC of 4. Finally, Creed takes him down, having studied extensively the hand-to-hand human anti xenos combat manual of the legendary brother-captain Kirk.
(Artist's Rendition of the Final Showdown, Colorized)
Dark Eldar turn 3, the two Wych squads join the combat against the tanks, not killing them but encircling them with the hellions to ensure they can't fall back. The Kabalite Warriors open up on the Baneblade once more and end up rolling nothing but 3s for their D3 damages, taking it all the way down to a single hull point. The archon and his Court gang up in a completely unfair combat against Creed, and despite his attempting the advanced double-fisted Gornslayer shoulder pummel on one of the Sslyths, he goes down to their combined melee might.
Guard turn 3, the baneblade opens up once more with its ballistics skill knocked down to 6+, but still manages to finish off the Cronos and score one kill point on a kabalite warrior squad. The Wyvern kills the wounded Sslyth for more kill points. However in the fight phase, the hellions and wyches finish off both the Manticore and Hydra, and they're all set to exit the board next turn. With the baneblade almost certainly going to die to blaster fire, and the whole wych flank ready to exit for 8 points, we decide to call the game there.
And an excellent game it was! I'm very thankful for my opponent's excellent sportsmanship in agreeing to reset the game after what would've been about a 45 minute match, as the resulting battle between our armies was extremely tactical and interesting.The Hellhammer was an absolute monster in this mission, taking down nearly double its point cost and supplying probably 3/4 of my opponent's kill points, and on my end though the Hellions probably carried the game, I have to give MVP to the hellion sergeant, who for the first time in ever contributed to the squad killing more points in melee than they did in shooting.