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Battlefleet Gothic 2010 compendium: Battlefleet Bakka

Battlefleet Gothic 2010 compendium: Battlefleet Bakka

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Published by: Spammalott on May 11, 2012
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Segmentum Tempestus is one of the fiveSegmentae Majoris, the great administrativedivisions of the galaxy. It lies to the galacticsouth of Segmentum Solar, betweenSegmentum Pacificus to the galactic west andthe Ultima Segmentum to the galactic east.Here, matter is scarce and the Segmentum ismostly a dark and empty void dimly lit byscattered stars. Like the other SegmentaeMajoris, it is organized into 200 light-yearcubes called sectors. The naval headquarters arelocated in a 15 light-year cuboid, SubsectorBakka, which is located on the main galacticstar arm that passes through the east of theSegmentum.
It is mercifully free from proximityto a festering mass incursion from the warp,such as the Eye of Terror or the Maelstrom. Assuch, a Chaos incursion is usually a problem of raiders than the massed attack of a large fleet of deranged heretics. However, Tempestus isnotorious for genestealer infestation as well asOrk and Eldar buccaneering. Therefore, therehas been a tendency for Tempestus battlefleetsto concentrate on small flotilla and anti-piracytactics rather than a Grand Fleet strategy. Tothis end the Battlefleet places a greater relianceon large numbers of older, smaller warshipsthan is typical for most other fleets.In the 36
Millennium, a group of Tempestustacticians, sometimes called the GareoxPrerogative because they were based at theGareox Sector Base, came to prominence. This'Young School' proposed a complete change toImperial Navy fleets based on attack-craftcarriers as such tactics had proved highlyeffective against pirate squadrons. The arrogantPrerogative eventually gained enough politicalinfluence to control ship design and were ableto order the construction of attack-carrierwarships such as the ill-fated
classbattleships. This action brought them intoconflict with the 'Big-Gun Lobby' at Bakka.Political rivalry eventually led to outright civilwar, the so-called Gareox incident (InquisitaClassificae Purgata Secrata, level sextus).A series of fleet actions demonstrated thesuperiority of lance-armed warships over attack carriers and the Prerogative was purged andGareox cleansed. In their bitterness, many of their supporters in the Fleet turned to blasphemyand fled into the warp. Only three
were built out of the fifteen originally orderedand all became traitors. This incident left formany centuries a suspicion of attack carriers inTempestus battlefleets, and even today there is atendency for such fleets to favor big-gun ships.This is particularly true of Battlefleet Bakkawhere the Big-Gun Lobby had subsequentlyreigned supreme.Delta Prime
Sector Naval BaseSegmentum Fortress WorldIometaChakkaSerakaNexusVerdantiaLochanHadesWihtanNo Return384/87/BS/SW54/1Ironika
Put not your trust in ships because ships fail.Put not your trust in guns because guns fallsilent.Put not your trust in men because men break.Put your trust in the Emperor because he isthe salvation of mankind.
- Epistle to the Macraggans
Bakka is a young world, a squalling brat of aworld. Left alone, it might have matured, passedthrough adolescence into tolerant middle age,and raised a plethora of biological children. Butit never had that chance because the restlessagents of mankind claimed it for their own,greedy for its abundant and available mineralwealth. The surface of Bakka consists of black island rafts of basalt and granite that float on aglowing viscous sea of cooling lava. Every sooften, turbulent flows or a meteorite strikecauses fresh magna to burst through the thin skinon the surface of the orange seas and throwincandescent fountains of yellow fire into thesky. The atmosphere is hot, acrid andexceedingly poisonous; oxides of nitrous,sulphur and sodium mix with ammonia in spiralsof yellow, brown and red fog. Giant, trackedmachines extract minerals when convective flowforces important ores near the surface of theseas. The loss rate among the ore processingworkers is substantial, and commonly penitentsand heretics are assigned to the duty. Thepunishment for a penitent and a heretic is thesame. Naturally, the Emperor rejoices at therighteous remorse of a penitent but the sin muststill be cleansed by punishment.Permanent installations are built on the black rafts of basaltic rock. In the reinforcedadamantium walls of the fortress-like plants, oreis processed into usable materials. Heavy laserbatteries are mounted on the strengthened roofsof the squat, dark structures to blast awaymeteors - and the Emperor's foes, astechnological developments to defend againstthe ever-present threat of asteroid impacts wereeasily applied to low-orbit and later ship-baseddefenses. Most of the manufacturing facilitieshang above the planet in geostationary orbit, andhere are also found the vast sprawlingdockyards of the Segmentum Tempestus SectorNaval Base.
One of the most famous battles involvingBattlefleet Bakka took place during the FirstTyrannic War. Tyranids had cut a swath throughthe Dominion of Ultramar, the Ultramarinehomeworld of Macragge itself was under heavyattack from Hive Fleet Behemoth, and theUltramarines where being forced back, step bystep, by a tide of alien horrors. Then, just whenall appeared to be lost, the first squadrons of ships from Battlefleet Bakka began to arrive. Inspace Marneus Calgar watched in rapt attentionas reality rippled in front of the shapes emergingfrom the warp before parting like a curtain toreveal the familiar shapes of Imperial warships.Over two hundred Imperial eagles emblazonedthe hologlobe representing heavy cruisers,missile destroyers, battleships and including agold eagle representing the huge Emperor classcapital ship
 Dominus Astra
. The sense of relief was a palpable force aboard the ships of Ultramar. Now the Tyranids were trapped withthe Tempestus fleet ahead and the Ultramar fleetbehind.
The hive fleet started to decelerate and turn back in-system, seeking to destroy the lesser Ultramarforce behind them. The Ultramar fleet slowedand prepared to fight again as Calgar swiftlycommunicated with Lord Admiral Rath,commander of the Tempestus fleet, andexchanged plans. The Ultramar fleet clumpedinto a tight wedge to keep the Tyranids at baywith their massed batteries while the Tempestusvessels spread into a broad avellan cross. As theTyranids engaged Calgar's ships the arms of thecross formed by Lord Admiral Rath's fleetclosed in around them like the jaws of a trap.The battle was short and brutal as the Tyranidswere caught in the cross-fire of the two fleets.Though they were outnumbered by over three toone the Imperial ships blasted their way throughthe hive fleet and scattered the bio-ships intosmall groups. The Tyranids' piecemeal counter-attacks were beaten off by the awesomefirepower of the heavily armored and shieldedImperial ships. Their lances of fusion firetransfixed the organic hulls of the bio-ships andclouds of Imperial Navy fighters darted in totear apart the crippled vessels. Within an hourthe remnants of the hive fleet were dead anddrifting, charred hulks spinning slowly throughthe void.
The battle had taken its toll of the combinedfleet. Calgar had lost half his remaining ships,and several Imperial ships had to be destroyedby the weapons of their compatriots becausethey had been boarded and overrun by theTyranids. The tales of horror from these vesselsmirrored those from the polar fortresses onMacragge all too closely. It was evident thatthe Tyranids were horrifying, almostunstoppable opponents at close quarters. Withthe fate of the beleaguered polar garrisonspressing on his mind Calgar swiftly gatheredup his fleet and turned back in-system, LordAdmiral Rath's ships swung into triumphantprocession behind him. Though it would bemany hours before the fleet could arrive atMacragge Calgar was determined to return intime to save his men.Behind the two fleets the very fabric of spacerippled before it was suddenly torn aside asanother fleet emerged from warp space. Thehologlobes were filled with ranks of red sparksas the second Tyranid hive fleet bore down onthe ships of the combined Imperial fleet. This
hive fleet was fresh and undamaged: hundredsof large bio-ships made up its vanguard withtheir smaller companions staying to the sidesand rear. Calgar desperately sought an edge toexploit against this new foe. The other fleet hadonly been defeated because it was surprisedand weakened; this new fleet was too strong tofight. The defences of Macragge were hoursaway, damaged by the ongoing Tyranid assaultbut still operational. The only other defensivepoint was the ringed gas-giant Circe, whichthey could reach within the hour.Calgar headed back to Macragge. Lord AdmiralRath declared that too many of his ships wouldbe caught before they reached that planet andturned away toward Circe. As the ponderousships of the Tempestus fleet swung their prowstowards roiling Circe and its treacherous ringsof rocks and dust the hive fleet smoothlydivided itself. The greater part of the alien shipspursued the Imperial vessels towards the gasgiant and its shining rings. The remainderdogged the Ultramar fleet with such numbersthat to turn back would be suicidal. Amidst therings of Circe the Imperial fleet turned at bay,their engines holding them at a dead halt abovebands of storm that reached about the giant'scircumference. The Tyranid ships swept forwardin a wave which filled the monitors and gunsights with targets. Laser salvos and plasmabeams struck down the bio-ships by tens andthen hundreds but the hive fleet ground forwardregardless of loss. Vessels of both sides felltowards Circe's hungry pull as they were hit,tumbling down to be smashed apart in the stonyrings or to send flares of incandescent gas jetting into space as they burned amidst cloudsbelow.One by one the Imperial vessels were grappledand overrun or torn apart by the hail of shotsfrom a dozen foes. The rings flared with thebright flashes of Imperial ships dying in fierywreaths of plasma. The skies above Circe werefilled with the detritus of war, charred fragmentsof ships and bio-ships merging together to formnew rings of steel, blood and bone. At the heightof the battle only a fraction of the Imperialwarships remained operational, amongst themthe scarred bulk of the
 Dominus Astra
. Givinghis remaining ships a final order to scatter LordAdmiral Rath swung the mighty capital shipabout and thrust forward into the heart of thehive fleet. Roaring forward on its many tails of white fire the
 Dominus Astra
ripped through thebio-ships with its jagged ram, weapons blastingfrom every gun port and turret, the enemy soclose that the shot and detonation of its fusioncannon were simultaneous. For a brief instantthe
 Dominus Astra
kept the horde back with theblaze of its weapons before the Tyranids sweptin like a tide of bone and flesh to cover it withtheir numbers.
A black globe crackled and flared into existenceover the spot. Real space rippled visibly andthen shuddered back before the groaning warpdrives of the
 Dominus Astra
as it hurled itself into the warp. Reality contorted under the strain:mass and warp energy collided in a cataclysmicimplosion of black light and impossible sound.All of the closest Tyranid ships were draggedinto the Astra's displacement and were lost withit. Those further away were smashed in theswirling storm of dust, rocks and other detritusswept into the ship's wake. Great flares of incandescent gas gouted up from Circe toincinerate the handful of surviving ships thatremained in a holocaust of flame. The
 Dominus Astra
disappeared into the warp never to be seenagain. Only a dozen other ships of the proudTempestus fleet survived the battle of Circe.These limped away towards Macragge, thoughthe battle for the Ultramarines' homeworldwould be long over by the time they arrived.
 Fleet Defense Turret
A particular Bakka innovation is the fleet defenseturret, developed from the remarkably effective systemof low-orbit defenses used to protect the Bakka forgeworld. Though exceedingly complex, the Mechanicusof Bakka found a way to incorporate this on starshipsas a long-range turret that can be used to protect othernearby vessels, and within a few millennia it couldoccasionally be found on Mechanicus vesselsthroughout the Imperium. Two turrets on a ship areexchanged for fleet defense turrets capable of protecting itself or any one other vessel within 15cmeach ordnance phase, adding +2 to the turret strengthof the ship it is defending (this does not alter bomberattack rolls when used to defend another vessel). These
otherwise work exactly as normal turrets do in all other
respects. When used with Battlefleet Bakka, AdeptusMechanicus capital ships may take the Fleet DefenseTurrets refit for +5 points instead of rolling for itrandomly on the Mechanicus Gifts table.
Battlefleet Bakka warships need to be well equippedwith turrets because of the relative lack of fighterdefenses, but Fleet Defense Turrets are too complex tobe serviced by ratings of the Imperial Navy. A simplersolution was devised for the warships of BattlefleetBakka- any capital ship of Battlefleet Bakka can add+1 turret to its profile for +5 points. This upgrade doesnot count against refits ships can take normally.Reserve vessels may not be given this upgrade, but anyvessels from the Battlefleet Bakka fleet list used asreserves in other fleets may take it with them.

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