Friday, July 31, 2009

Gimmick Lists vs Combined Arms

Two posts in one day? Shocking, I know, but bare with me. Gimmick lists are something I've been seeing a lot with the new Imperial Guard Codex. People will run them, and often claim that they're just as good as normal Combined Arms lists. I plan on discussing this issue in depth, but first, let's talk about what exactly I mean by "Gimmick Lists".

I consider a Gimmick List to be something that focuses heavily on one unit, or combination of units, to the exclusion of all others. Some examples are All Vets, No Tanks, Chimera Spam, Air Cav, and Conscript Press. I do NOT consider Gunline and Mech lists to be Gimmick Lists, as they tend more to be play styles, and can be carried out in a number of different ways.

Now, the general problem with these lists is that they do focus so heavily on one unit type or combo that they become very, very vulnerable to the counters an army can bring against that unit. It's not a problem as much at lower point value games, but when you get to 1500pts+, the enemy can bring enough tanks, guns, or very angry men with sharp objects to rip apart a Gimmick List with relative ease, especially compared to a balanced Combined Arms list, which can very very hard to crack.

Let's talk about each of those examples.

1. All Vets: What it says on the can. This list takes Veterans as only troop choice, usually with a CCS and either Chimeras or Valks tossed in. While this does mean you're packing a lot of SWs, it also means you've sacrificed HWs, and therefore an effective gunline. Vets CAN take HWs, but not in the numbers of a Platoons can, and it also means your SWs aren't being put to good use at close range. Also, any advantage in survivability that Grenadiers and Forward Sentries give you is nothing compared to the two Infantry Squads you could take for the same cost. Not only is that more wounds, but it's two targets, thus splitting the enemy fire and reducing it's effectiveness. Vet lists have a lot fewer units on the ground, and thus the enemy can concentrate fire on them more easily. That's why people use Chimeras, here, to give the Vets a little protection and to gelp them blitz the enemy. The downside is that this further reduces the number of troops you have, with you losing 1 Vet Squad for every two you have in a Chimera.

Recommended Point Levels: Vet armies work great at 500 or 750pts, but will struggle at 1000pts unless in Chimeras or Valks. Even adding those in will only extend their effectiveness to 1500pts, and which point you really get crushed under weight of numbers.

2. No Tanks: This means no Russes or Bassies. Some of the more diehard IG players will call that heresy, but it's not a bad tactic. Sentinels and Valks work pretty well up to a point. Valks and Vens do pack a punch, and Sents can be useful for playing merry hell in the enemy lines. This list also makes good use of HWs (hopefully), to help offset the lack of Armour. The downside is that you hav only one way of throwing out those High Str, good AP templates that almost all our tanks have, and that's the Demo Charge (which is unreliable at best). Russes DO have a purpose, and that is to be shot at with everything up to (and often including) Lascannons, shrug it all off, and blast something into paste. Sentinels are fragile as a wet tissue, and Valks and Vens aren't much better when it comes to armour. You take a substantial hit on the survive ability of your armour, as well as their effectiveness and ability to kill masses of troops.

Recommended Point Levels: Almost mandatory at 500pts, and works pretty well at 750 and 1000pts. They'll struggle against 1500pts, I find, when the other army is packing a lot of High Str weapons that can bring down the lighter non-tank vehicles. I would recommend this at 1000pts, max.

3. Chimera Spam: The idea here is to put all your infantry in Chimeras. Platoons, Vets, CCS, anything and everything that can take one, gets shoved in a Chimera. This is one of the three stronger Gimmick Lists. It can suffer from the lack of HWs, although Chimeras can help offset that with their turret weapons (keep in mind, through, moving 12in is in your best interest). This means that the enemy isn't as soft as one might like when your troops reach them, which is why Hull HFs are generally a good idea. It also suffers from the lack of men (every Chimera you take is one less Infantry Squad with a SW), but not to the extent that the Vets list does. It also means you have to get shot at by a LOT of weapons as you advance, since you've trimmed your army down and stuck them all in transports to make nice boxes for the enemy to shoot. Remember, too, that your Chimeras can explode, and kill a good portion of the squad inside before they ever fire a shot.

Just to be clear, this is different then Mechanized, as Mechanized will usually have Hellhounds, Valks, Sents, ect, tossed in. The Chimera Spam generally uses just Chimeras, with a handful of Russes backing them up.

Recommended Point Levels: Generally too expensive for 500 and 750pts, this list really becomes strong at 1000-1500pts. Higher then that, though, and your Chimeras won't be able to stand up to the volume of fire headed your way. Your infantry will be walking, and since there are less of them because you spent points on the Chimeras, they'll be cut down in short order.

4. Air Cav: Again another one of the stronger lists, Air Cav will consist of Platoons, Vets, and/or Stormies in Valks and Vendettas. This list packs a pretty big punch, is fast moving, and gan play havoc with Gunlines. They are VERY expensive though (in terms of $ and points), and are something of a Glass Cannon. If you get first turn and deploy well, you can cripple the enemy in the first or second turn, then drop your troops off to finish the job. Lose first turn, or deploy poorly, and you'll get shredded. It also has the downside of needing to take Squadrons for it to work. This is okay at the lower point levels, but can badly hurt your ability to kill multiple targets at larger point levels. You either have to fire all your Vendettas at a single tank, and all your Valks at a single infantry unit, or you mix the squadrons, and waste the shots from the Vens when shooting at infantry, or the Valks when shooting at tanks. The situation remedies somewhat when you get boots on the ground, but it still limits your ability to punish the enemy army before you dump troops on them.

Recommended Point Levels: Too expensive for 500 and 750, the Air Cav list comes into it's own at 1000-1500pts. Even at 1500, though you start to feel the Squadron Pain, and at 2000pts, it hamstrings you so much that I would almost consider it nonviable.

5. Conscript Press: Usually used with Chenkov, this army relies on the tried and true Soviet tactic of "They can't shoot back if they're covered in corpses". Usually combined with Chenkov, this player will send waves of Conscripts at you, usually backed by HWs and a few Russes. It's strong in that it will choke the enemy with targets and CC units, while still allowing you to pound them at range, but it has the downside of losing LOTS of men, and reducing your fire output for the meat shield. It also means you'll probably be shooting through your own men, giving the enemy a cover save, and has the risk of CC actually blocking LOS quite badly. A Commissar Lord is also a mandatory unit for this list, and will die if you wipe out the Conscripts without removing him first. It's generally better to take Combined platoons, where you can hav SWs and Power Fists, as well as cheap Commissars. The unit also has better WS, which is nice against Tau.

Recommended Point Levels: Hard to do at 500pts, but good from 750-1000, and not bad at 1500pts, although that's where the big nasty things like LR Crusaders, Carnifexes, and huge masses of Orks tend to show up and pulp your screen on the way to your HW teams. Still somewhat viable at 2000pts, just for the sheer number of Conscripts you can take, but don't expect them to last long.


Thursday, July 30, 2009

Demolisher 101: Turning Your Enemies into a Gooey Paste

Alright, as promised, here is the Demolisher tactica.

One of the two tanks to carry over from the old Codex, the Demolisher is really the "Kill it dead" tank of choice. It's universally effective against armour and infantry, and is pretty tough, having boosted Rear Armour so that those damn Boltguns can't glance it. It's downside is the range of it's main gun, 24in, which means you have to mix it up with the enemy if you want to kill things. It's also more Expensive then the basic Russ, but the upgrade in firepower makes the price tag worth it.

Let's talk about what you should be taking on your Demolisher.

Hull HB/ Lascannon: It really depends on what you kit the tank out for. If you want to pulp hordes of Nids, IG, and Orks, take the HB. If you're fighting againt MEQs, Nidzilla, vehicle heavy lists, etc, take a Lascannon. The Heavy Flamer option is worth mentioning here, as it can come in handy if you want to use your Demo to Tank Shock infantry or bash apart Gunlines.

Sponsons: Ah, now here we go. Sponsons are a must have for a Demo. HF Sponsons can be useful if you have to burn through hords of enemies, but I would recommend HBs instead, especially coupled with the Hull HB. For heavy targets, I would say take Multimeltas, combined with the Hull Las. That combo will slag anything you point it at. Plasma would be above Multimeltas if it wasn't so damn expensive. If you can spare the points against MEQs, take the Plasma Sponsons, but otherwise, leave them at home. The one down side here is that if you move the Demo, you can only fire one weapon in addition to the Cannon, so plan carefully.

Pintle Mounts: I would save the points for better things, but there isn't much harm in taking one. Only combine it with the HB Demo though.

HK Missile: I will never recommend these on an IG tank, to be honest.

Dozer Blade: Yes! The Demolisher MUST move to be effective with the main gun, so having a Dozer blade only helps to keep it going.

Extra Armour: A decent choice, but not an essential one. The ability to move when stunned helps out the Demolisher more then any other Russ, but it isn't too critical, considering that the points can be better used elsewhere.

Camo Netting: Pass on this one. As I just mentioned, Demos work best when moving about, so the Camo netting becomes kinda worthless.

Pask: Pask is a good choice in any Russ, but he works best here in a Multimelta Demolisher, to help those High Str shots hit home. Tossing him in a Plasma Demo is even better, but the price tag would be obscene, and I cannot, in good conscience, recommend someone spend 250+ points on a single tank (which should prove that I'm not an SM player). The HB Demo needs him less, since you're putting out a good number of shots.

Now, how many of these terrors should you be taking? at 1000pts to 1500pts, I recommend a single Demo, backed up a regular Russ or two. Taking a pair is effective, though, especially when using mechanized lists. I would never council more then two in a normal game of 40k, though, as you'll want that last HS slot for something with a little more range and specialization, like a Vanq or Eradicator (two Demos and an Erad is a nasty combo, by the way). While the Demo is a good tank, it's also an expensive one, especially with the Sponsons, so going overboard with them is not advisable.

Demolishers are really about close support. Moving them up to support your advancing troops, or to blast the big nasty enemy units before they can get close to you, is what they're all about. Don't be afraid to push it forward into cover ahead of your line and let fly. They also work best if they only have one type of target to worry about. If you gave them Meltas or Plasma, have your supporting infantry pack HBs, so they can pop infantry while the Demo goes to work on tougher targets. The Demo is also one of the most effective tanks against Necrons. A Melta Demo can put lots of hurt on a C'Tan, and has a good chance of bringing down a Monolith (the main gun AND the lascannon both stand a good chance against AV 14). They also insta-pulp most of the Necron units, especially that pesky Lord. They're also great against Marines, where you can really lay out the pain on their high cost troops. Against Horde Armies, I would say take just one, as Exterminators, Eradicators, and normal Russes do the job just as well, for lest cost, and from further away (so they don't get punched to death).

So what are your thoughts on the Demolisher?


Monday, July 27, 2009


Okay, figured I'd pop my head in here and tell you all what's shaking.

First off, the Demolisher just nosed out the LRMBT for the win in the poll. I'll be doing a Demolisher Tactica in the coming week, and might do a LRMBT one as well.

I still owe RS a Flamer Tactica as well, but real life and a few other things are eating me alive right now.

Here's an update on what we're doing.

Kaikelx (author of the Fluff Blog Tales of the Imperium), are tweaking the Codex a bit so some units actually deserve their point costs, have options we think they should, etc. You can check it out here it you want to see what we're up to.

Requiem and myself, along with a few members of the IGMB, have cooked up a Campaign to keep us busy in August. It will be written in a narrative style, with battle reports taking the form of After Action Reports and descriptive scenes. More details can be found here.

Something we mentioned a while back, but haven't talked about much is Dark Heresy, the 40k RPG. I run a group myself, and am part of another one. I hope to post an article or three about the game in the future.

So, this coming week, watch for the Tacticas, and keep an eye on those other projects!


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sneak peak

This is a preview of something I'm working on. My Elysian Marbo.

I'm planning on testing him out in a few games once I've finished him (Emperor knows when that will be), so I promise a tactica on some of the ways you can use him somewhere down the line.

Monday, July 20, 2009


Alright guys, I finally got off my lazy butt and made an email contact for Forward March!

It's, so if you have any IG questions, comments, or just want to say hey, shoot us an email.

Also, the Melta guide is up, so enjoy, and let me know if I missed anything you think is worth mentioning.


Meltaguns: When it has to be dead.

Alright guys, as promised, here's the Meltagun tactica. Requiem said he'd take GLs, so look for that in the future.

The meltagun is really the eavy hitter for the IG infantry. It's got the highest strength of any SW we can take, and one of the best AP value. Ideally, it's used for tank busting, but there are a host of other ways to use it.

Let's break down what units can take them, and how to use them.

CCS: This is always a good choice. The fact you can take 4 meltas, and have the shots hit on a 3+, means you'll hurt what you shoot. Packing a CC COmpany Commander in with them is also nice, since you can fire, then charge, unlike with Plasma guns. Keep in mind, though, you shouldn't have your CCS running arnound chasing tanks. Have them sit back with the gunline, and pop Termies or Deep Strikers that show up later in the game. The disadvantage of having a Melta CCS is that you're not taking things like Plasma Guns, which benefit from the BS 4 and the ability to take a Medic even more then Meltas.

Tip: Straken+3 Meltas+Medic. Toss in 2 bodyguards and Carapace, and you've got a party.

PCS: Another decent choice for Meltas. You're packing 4 of them, and if you take a Commander with a Pfist and meltabombs, that gives your platoon a lot of AT punch. The real downside is the the BS 3, which reduces the effectiveness of the unit. That's why I prefer to run Flamers in my PCS.

Tip: Al'Rahem and 4 Meltas. Have him flank and pick out the enemy commander, of a very expensive target, and kill it with preddijuce. You can also give him a Chimera, too, if you want a little more fun.

Infantry Squads: Don't take them here. The melta is a one shot per turn weapon, and the poor BS of the basic squad, combined with the fact you've only got one, means that it really isn't worth it. If you MUST deal with tanks, take meltabombs for the Squad Sgt.

Tip: None here, really. Best you can do is give the squad "Bring it down!", but that means you aren't giving the order to an HW Section.

SW Squads: Better then basic Line Squads because you can take 3 Meltas, but worse then a PCS because you can only take 3, and you can't charge after having the squad fire. The base cost is also higher then that of the PCS, and the PCS is mandatory, so you might as well be putting Meltas in it. I would tack on a SW team for meltas only if you have your PCS doing other things (like running flamers).

Tip: 2 Meltas and a Demo Charge will end pretty much anything, but combining them with Al'Rahem makes them even more lethal.

Veterans: This is where most people put their meltaguns, simply because it's the best option. Plasma is better in the CCS, because you back it up with a 5+ save AND feel no pain (instead of a simple 4+ save), flamers are kind of a waste of BS 4, and the GL is better for line squads. There are three basic ways Vets with Meltas are used. First, people will pack them into a Valk, and have them jump out and pop tanks. Second, people will often pack them into Chimeras, and have them do Drive-by atacks. Third, and this is one I use myself, they'll give the Vets Shotguns, and hold them in reserve. Once something nasty like Terminators deepstrike, I bring my Vets in, shoot, and charge. Giving the Sgt. a Pfist and a plasma pistol is even more lethal.

Tip: Carapace is good fo melta Vets, but Demolitions is even better, as you get a free demo charge out of the deal. Give Demo Vets some shotguns, pack them in a Valk, and have them go around shooting tanks and slapping meltabombs on things.

Stormies: Since Stormies are now almost exclusvly an anti-MEQ unit, so Plasma and Meltas are the order of the day. Plasma has the advantage of a lot of High Str shots, but Meltas have the advantage of being an "Assault" weapon, meaning you can fire the Hotshot Laspistols. This allows you to charge what you shoot, should you need to finish the job, or should you want to lock yourself in CC, so your expensive Stormies don't get their butts blasted off.

Tip: Behind enemy lines is the most useful Spec Op you can take if you're hunting for MEQs. If you're tank poping, grab a Valk and use Airborne Assault, or take Forward Recon if you're moving them on foot.

Rough Riders: Put meltas here only if you're hunting tanks. For Termie hunting, I like haivng the basic Pistols, so I can pick up the extra attacks for the Lances. Always couple them with Meltabombs for the Sgt, if you do go galloping after tanks, though.

Tip: Creed+Tactical Genius+ Rough Riders= Dead tanks and Devestator Squads. taking the Meltaguns also ensures you have some AP 3 punch after you charge the first time. Try charging an enemy squad to use the hunting lances, then go after armour.

That covers Meltas, who should take them, and how to use them! One thing I want to add though is picking your targets. If you're just wasting normal MEQs, take Plasma. It puts out more shots, so can chew through Tac Squads more easily. When dealing with Termies, I find it's useful to charge, to get the extra attacks in (and Termies usually have a Pfist, so you hit first)


Sunday, July 19, 2009

Poll Results

Okay, the votes are in, and...

Well, damn. It's a tie.

So, hopefully, I shall have guides up for both Grenade Launchers AND Meltas this week, unless one of my associates wants to write one (hint hint, guys).

I've added a new poll too. This time, it's regarding Russ variants. I'll give the winner the same treatment I just gave the Vanquisher (which is why it's not on the list). Also, you'll note the Punisher is not on the list. That's because you have to spend an absurd amount of points to make it effective at a bare minimum level, so I'm not going to bother with it, lest I end up somehow encouraging people to take it...

So, vote for which Russ you want to see, and watch for those SW Tacticas!


Slagging Armour 101: Vanquishers

Just a quick reminder, the poll on the left hand column on the page closes in about 7 hours, so be sure to vote!

Let's talk about one of my favorite things in the new Guard Codex.


Rejoice, boys and girls, because gone are the days of relying on Bassies for tank sniping, using Demolishers with Multimeltas to pop Land Raiders, or spamming Lascannons against Mech Tau and Marines. The Imperial Guard now has the best tank killing weapon in the game: The Leman Russ Vanquisher. It's cheap, it's tough, and it slags armour like no one's business.

Now, I've heard a lot of people complaining about the downgrade of it's main gun. In Imperial Armour I, it could fire the AT shells (which used a small blast) AND a normal Battlecannon shot. Without sparking a huge debate, I'm just going to say this; The downgrade makes sense. If they left the profile the same, then no one would take a LRMBT. Also, rolling to hit instead of scattering is better, since you have less of a chance to hit dead on with scatter, and hole of the template HAS to be on the tank to get a full strength hit.

Now, moving on, let's talk about some upgrades for your Vanq

Hull HB or Lascannon: Lascannon, and I shouldn't have to tell you why.

Sponsons: I find these to be a waste. No point in putting Flamer, HB, or the uber expensive Plasma sponsons on the Vanq, as that will help it fill a role you shouldn't be using the Vanq for. Some people like Multimelta sponsons, but I find the range to be crippling when it comes to using them effectively. Honestly, just leave the Sponsons at home.

Pintle Mounts: Only useful for shooting at basic infantry, and you shouldn't be shooting your Vanquisher at basic infantry.

Hunter-Killer Missile: I would pass on these in general for the IG. Hitting on a 4+ just isn't worth it.

Dozer Blade: Only take it if you plan on moving your Vanq, and that should only happen if you decided to tack Multi Meltas on to it. I would just leave it behind.

Extra Armour: Again, only if you plan on moving. Otherwise, the difference between "Shaken" and "Stunned" really doesn't matter.

Camo Netting: Yes, yes, a thousand times, yes! If you plan on sitting back and sniping, and can spare the points, take this. it gives you a 3+ cover save when you're hiding in a building or woods, making your Vanq not only lethal, but also even harder to kill.

Knight Commander Pask: With the Hull Lascannon adding in another AT shot, I find that he's not essential, but he always helps if you can spare the points. I would honesty put him in a Vanq instead of any other Russ.

Now that you have an idea of what you're putting on your Vanquisher, let's figure out how many you should be taking. Generally, I always take one, and that's usually all I need. They really shine when working in pairs, though, as you can put one on either side of your deployment, so you can catch the enemy in their side armour. I prefer to run them separately, if I can, but taking them in squadrons isn't terrible. Still, only do it if you have to.

When it comes to deployment, I really do like putting them on the side of the table, to get better angles at enemy armour. putting them so they're hiding in woods or buildings is also a great idea, as it allows them some protection from the absurd amount of return fire they'll be getting after they pop the first tank. Make sure you have a clear field of fire down most of the table, too, so the enemy won't be getting any cover saves from the pain you're dishing out.

As for using them in the actual game, sitting back and sniping is what they do best. Have them target the heavy/critical stuff first (Land Raiders, Hammerheads, Dreads, etc), and leave the lighter stuff to your infantry. You can also use them to snipe any unescorted SCs that are wandering around, or put some pain on Termies that have deep struck behind you. Since the shots don't use templates, this means you can actually get away with shooting the Termies without worrying that the shot may scatter into your men.

There you go! Hope that helped you get to know the best tank killer out there a little better.


Friday, July 17, 2009

Chimeras, or What a Real Man's APC Looks Like

Put your Rhinos down, kids. It's time to analyze the chimera.

It's a tank, comes with two heavy weapons, front armor of 12, ignores water, has five fire points out the top hatch while not becoming open-topped, and is overall a fairly awesome vehicle. It looks nice, too.

The tactics are a bit different from a rhino - the rhino is a dash-and-drop transport, while the chimera is more a mobile fire base. Having your rhinos destroyed at the end of a game is almost expected, but the chimera should still be shooting at stuff. Whereas the rhino should rush forward with reckless abandon and tank shock if appropriate, the chimera should hang back a touch, keeping it's AV10 side armor away from enemy LOS.

There are four ideas I have regarding the use of chimeras: Line Breaker APC, Objective Grabber, Objective Holder, and Command Range Extender.

Weapons load-out - Unless you plan on getting very close to the enemy, always keep the multi-laser. Otherwise use the heavy flamer. There's no tactical advantage the heavy bolter has over the multi-laser, except for specific conditions half of which will be better served by a S6 weapon than a AP4 weapon. For the hull mount, the heavy bolter should serve all around better than a heavy flamer, due to the limtations on its firing angle. For a pintle, it depends on who you're fighting - I just glued the heavy stubber on my chimeras... 36" range over 24" equates to better in my book. Your milage may vary.

Options - Extra armor is never a bad choice. Being able to move away from whatever just shot you is usually wise... Dozer blades would depend entirely on what kind of terrain you usually see. HKs are trash for IG unless you take a boatload of them. Even then, I don't think that they're worth the points. I definately will never take them on chimeras. Camo netting is nice for an Objective Holder, but it's so expensive. I leave it behind.

Line Breaker APC
This is a lot like a rhino's shock transport, only the emphasis is on staying ~10 inches away from everything, unless the targets are marines/anything with krak. Then you stay ~16 inches away. Why? Assault phase - if the enemy does not have S4(or more) and/or krak grenades, then the chimera should be safe even if it doesn't cause a fall back from the shooting phase. The idea here, is to shoot the ever-loving crap out of your foe before he can shoot the sides of your armored box full of squishy guys. Hugging buildings on one side helps with the difficulty of positioning your chimera. Staying under 12" away from the target is ideal, so that you can add the firepower of five passengers to the hail of death coming from the chimera. If you've got a heavy weapon in there, great!

An alternate/combo of Line Breaker and Enemy-held Objective Grabber is the hellhound wannabe chimera. Slap a heavy flamer turret on there and tank shock/drive up to the contesting units. If you tank shocked, wait to see if you manage to make them run away in fear of your angry treads. If they didn't run, or you didn't want to waste time/risk a tank shock, unload that heavy flamer of doom. You did disembark the occupants, right? They can shoot too. Now you have two units contesting that the enemy has to shoot. If he didn't turn tail. If this objective is near his board edge, chase him with your infantry by extending your coherency to it's limit. You just have to keep one guy w/in 6" of the falling back unit, and he'll be unable to regroup. Dirty trick, but you're playing Guard...

A second alternate/combo: Mechanized platoon led by Al'Rahem. Support this idea with an astropath. I think that it's use is fairly obvious - your forces already on the table are the anvil, and here comes one or two hammers from the sides to catch everything off-guard. If you can master the use of one isolated chimera with minimal support, this is a major game winning tactic.

Third alternate: A squad of vets with three melta guns, led by Bastonne in a chimera to do drive bys on side/rear AV. If you distract the opponent enough, this becomes an option. Even if your chimera is destroyed, once you're in the enemy lines with that squad, you can do damage. At the very least it will relieve pressure on the rest of your army.

Objective Grabber
Much like the Line Breaker, the Objective Grabber is there to be on the offensive. These need a bit more support, though - you're getting unsafely close to the enemy, and it's likely that your chimera will not survive the experience. This is the finnese application of chimera movement - you want to get close to the objective while moving at combat speed. If the objective is already held, hang back and fire lots 'o guns at the enemy. Use a supporting unit to add some fire. Maybe even a shiny bait unit to get enemy to divide his fire, and give you an extra turn of shooting. Once you're w/in 12" of the objective, it's time to consider if you want to disembark your guys inside. It's a very situational thing, although if the chimera has been immobilized, you may as well...

Objective Holder
Basically in this role, the chimera is an added set of armor for a HWS. Stick some heavy bolter/ML guys in a chimera, and park them on an objective. Adding a multi-laser, a heavy stubber, and a heavy bolter from the chimera means that anything stepping into 36" radius will get a stern talking-to. This really won't hold against a concentrated effort, so be sure to occupy the enemy elsewhere. Preferably in the 24-36" range form the chimera, so that all that firepower isn't sitting there doing nothing...

Command Range Extender
Another slightly cheap trick, the Command Range Extender makes use of measuring from the hull for ability ranges. Stick a CCS in a chimera and let the orders fly at ~2-3" further than the poor sap who has to yell at the top of his lungs. It's not limited to orders - 'aura' abilities like Aura of Discipline and Cold Steel and Courage will become more effective.

Alternate for CRE: Take Straken with a medic and three plasma guns. Stick them in a chimera and advance into the enemy's face. MEQs fear this plan. Once you're all up ons, have them hop out and use the chimera as a LOS blocker that can also shoot. Unload much plasma pain onto enemy squads. It's expensive, but very much worth the cost.

If anyone has any more ideas on chimera useage, put it in a comment, and I'll add it here.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Specializing Russes (and why you should do it)

A little while back, I had a debate with another IGMB member about outfitting Russes.

His suggestion was to put Plasma Cannons on a pair of Russes for a list. His logic was that this makes your Russes able to deal with most anything they run across, thus spreading your effectiveness out and meaning your tanks can handle anything.

My suggestion was that he take a Vanquisher and a Russ with HB Sponsons. My logic was that this allows the tanks to kill intended targets with greater ease, and allows you to always hit infantry and armour effectively every turn.

The person who had asked for advice went with my suggestion, and it worked like a charm. You can read the thread here.

Now, the question is why? Here are a few reasons why, with the IG, specializing Russes (and infantry as well) is a good idea.

1. We aren't Space Marines. We can't always hit on a 3+. Thus, I find it useful to kit out a Russ or Squad with all sorts of AT weaponry if I want it to pop tanks, or AI weaponry if I want it to paste infantry. That way I'm throwing a lot of the right kind of ordinance down range, and WILL kill something. Compare a Russ with HB sponsons to a Russ with Plasma. The former has 10 shots, while the latter has 6. Also, those templates have less of a chance of hitting the target then an HB (50% chance for normal weapon, just over 33% with templates if you factor in the BS). Yes, there is a chance the template will hit something else, but in my experience, it ends up being nothing but the table.

2. We aren't Space Marines, Round Two. Because all of our infantry is so firggin cheap, we can afford to roll 2-3 Russes in 1500-2000pt lists. That means that we don't have to have a single Russ that has to do everything. We can roll several that can be tweaked to do one job well. Yes, that means you have all your eggs in one basket if you lose a tank, but...

3. We have Infantry support. There is no reason whatsoever, with cheap HWs for your even cheaper infantry, for you to have to rely on the Vanq to do all the AT work. Likewise, The Exterminator isn't the only AI unit you should be throwing down. Taking a Lascannon or Missile Section (or both, or two of one type), and placing HBs in your squads ensures that, no matter what happens to your armour, you're still putting out a lot of AI and AT with good range. While the Russes are the stars of the show, the whole performance would fall flat on it's face without the supporting cast, the Infantry.

4. Jack of all Trades, Master of None. Consider the Plasma Russ. Yes, it's great for killing MEQs who are foolish enough to venture into the open, but it struggles with AV 13. Also, as mentioned above, it doesn't put out the same amount of shots as the HB Sponson Russ, and the shots are less accurate, thus making it less effective against line infantry. So, while it can do all jobs (except serious AT work), it does none of them very well.

5. Cost. The "Do it all" Russ is actually 20pts more expensive then either the Hull Las Vanquisher OR the HB Sponson Russ. So, not only are you taking up an FOC slot for a unit that doesn't do any job it's supposed to do very well, but you're paying more then you should for it.

So, there you have it. Here are a few suggestions for Russ build outs.

Basic Three Russes (These are great for fielding in almost any game)

Vanquisher w/ Hull Lascannon- Best tank buster out there. I always take one, and usually slap on camo netting.

LRMBT w/Hull HB and HB Sponsons- The best "All purpose" build, it's good against just about anything on foot.

Exterminator w/Hull HB and HB Sponsons- Great for dealing with IG, Tau, Eldar, Orks, and, well, anything that isn't an MEQ. It's also a living nightmare for light Transports.

Three Fancy Russes (Use these only when the situation warrents)

Leman Russ Eradicator w/Hull HB and HB Sponsons- Very much Anti-Infantry, it will put out a LOT of pain against non-MEQs. The reason it's here instead of as a basic Russ is that it's more expensive then the Exterminator, and doesn't have the same Anti-Transport capability. I would only take one of these.

Leman Russ Executioner w/Plasma Sponsons and Hull Las- VERY Expensive but VERY good at killing MEQs, it's main gun essentially combines the shot of a Plasma Cannon with the RoF of a Heavy Bolter. Flinging a whopping five Small Blast templates around also helps to offset the fact that you aren't rolling to hit. Still, it's very expensive, and that Russ+Plasma Sponsons combo is a cheaper solution.

Leman Russ Demolisher w/Anything- This is when you want it dead. Period. They're expensive, though, and it's usually a good idea to run Plasma or Melta Sponsons on it. Again, one or two would be all you need, and it should go after the biggest, baddest, hardest target your opponent throws down.

There you go guys. Any thoughts? Do you mix your roles, or specialize?


Sunday, July 12, 2009

SW Tacticas

In an effort to explore more of the fancy features of Google Blogger, I've added a poll to the left under "Followers". I'm going to write an in depth Tactica on an SW, and I want you guys to vote on which one. I'll break down which units to put it in, what to hit with it, and how to get your points' worth out of it. It will essentially be a more developed version of the little blurb I wrote about each one when I gave an overview.

So have at it guys!


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Roll Call

Yesterday, I decided to draw up an army list for my IG and SoB. Both are within FOC (and thus I had to leave out about half my tanks), and are designed to be thrown down together.


HQ: 320
Creed, Kell, Astropath, Fleet Officer, HB, Vox, Camo Cloaks

HQ: 240pts
Straken, 3 Flamers, Carapace, 2 Bodyguards, Medic

Stormies: 195pts
10 Stormies, 2 Plasma Guns, “Behind enemy lines”

Infantry Platoon: 845pts
HQ w/ 3 Plasma guns, Medic (105pts)
5 Squads w/ HBs, GLs, Voxes (305pts)
2 ML Sections (180pts)
2 AC Sections (150pts)
Lascannon Section (105pts)

Infantry Platoon: 660pts
HQ w/ Rahemo, 3 Meltaguns, Medic, Commissar w/Power Fist (150pts)
3 Squads w/ GLs, Voxes (180pts)
2 Squads w/ GLs, Voxes, Commissar (190pts)
1 SW Squad w/ 3 Flamers (50pts)
1 SW Squad w/ 3 GLs (50pts)

Vet Squad: 160pts
3 GLs, Harker, ML, Vox, Shotguns

Vet Squad: 195pts
3 Meltas, Demolitions, Bastonne, Vox, Shotguns

Vet Squad: 135pts
Carapace, Shotguns, 2 Flamers, Heavy Flamer, Vox

Vet Squad: 135pts
Carapace, Shotguns, 2 Flamers, Heavy Flamer, Vox

Leman Russ Squadron: 380pts
2 Vanquishers with Camo Netting, Hull Lascannon

Leman Russ Squadron: 380pts
2 LRMBTs with HB Sponsons, Camo Netting

Leman Russ Eradicator: 210pts
HB Sponsons, Camo Netting



HQ: 150pts
Inferno Pistol, Jump Pack, Blessed Weapon, Mantle of Ophelia, Cloak of St. Aspira, Book of St. Lucius

Seraphim Squad: 160pts
4 Sisters, Veteran Sister Superior w/ Book of St. Lucius, 2 Hand Flamers, Meltabombs

Battle Sister Squad: 147pts
Flamer, Heavy Flamer, Veteran Sister Superior w/ Book of St. Lucius

Battle Sister Squad: 147pts
Flamer, Heavy Flamer, Veteran Sister Superior w/ Book of St. Lucius

Battle Sister Squad: 139pts
2 Storm Bolters, Veteran Sister Superior w/ Book of St. Lucius
Dominion Squad: 198pts

4 Sisters w/ Flamers, Veteran Sister Superior w/ Book of St. Lucius, Immolator tank w/ Heavy Flamers, Smoke, Extra Armour, Holy Promethium.

Exorcist: 145pts
Blessed Ammunition


Total: 4646

So, what do you guys think?


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Very Special Weapons

Okay, it was a long time in coming, but here it is at last.

Special Weapons
(Note: These are presented in no particular order)

1. The Flamer

I consider this to be one of the "Staple" weapons of the Imperial Guard. It's cheap, can put out a lot of wounds, and doesn't need to roll to hit. It's great for toasting Orks, Nids, IG, and Eldar, and has the bonus of ignoring cover. It's range is a bit of a handicap, as are the Str and AP of the weapon.

Tips for use: I like putting these in PCS squads, and using them for counter assault and objective grabbing. 4 Templates will make even MEQs sweat those armour saves, and will roast just about any infantry unit. They're also a good staple in mobile platoons, flankers, etc. Some people don't like putting them with Vets (because it's a waste of BS 4), but Vets in Carapace with 3 Flamers and a bunch of Shotguns are a very nasty counter charge unit. Some people also put them in line squads when they know they're going to get charged (like when playing Orks). It can be effective, but it limits the amount of ranged shots you put out.

2. Grenade Launcher

This is the other "Staple" weapon. This, and the Flamer, should really be the only weapon your basic infantry should ever really have. Anything else is too expensive or dangerous to be used properly by line squads. Anyway, the GL is a good multi purpose weapon to give to your boys. It has good range for an SW, and the Krak round will do ugly things to most infantry and light vehicles. The Frag round is worse, as it's essentially a lasgun shot that uses the small blast template, and will therefore struggle to bring down anything with a toughness of 4 or better. Even against IG, it's not too great, as it only wounds on a 4+.

Tips for use: I put these in my Gunline squads, just to give them a little ranged punch. A PCS rolling 4 GLs will mess up small squads of Eldar and Tau pretty badly, and can usually pick off a Marine or two. That said, I don't recommend them fot Command Squads, since other weapons are better there. If you're having trouble with Rhinos or Trukks, take a Vet Squad with an Autocannon and 3 GLs. Three str 6 shots and two Str 7 shots, all hitting on a 3+, will end most light vehicles.

3. Meltagun

If you want to kill armour, Termies, high toughness creatures, or SCs, use this. It's reasonably priced, but for only one shot, you want to put them in a squad that can take several, and preferably hit on 3+. It has very short range as well, so you have to be close. That said, if it hits something, it almost always going to kill it.

Tips for use: I always give it to Vets with shotguns. If I know I'm facing deepstriking Termies, Drop Pods, or Battlesuits, I keep them in reserve. Then, when the target shows up, I march my Vets on, have them shoot the crap out of the target, and then charge. It's usually enough to finish them off, or at least tie them down. Giving Vets Meltas and packing them into Valkryies also tends to work out nicely, especially if you give them Shotguns and "Demolitions". That combo will kill just about any tank you point them at. It's also a good combo for Stormies, allowing them to pop up somewhere and shoot a tank to death.

4. Plasma Gun

Very much a staple for fighting MEQs, Plasma does ugly things to anybody rolling around in Power Armour, and can mess up Rhinos and Trukks as well. It also puts out a lot of shots, and has good range. The downside is that it's expensive. Oh, and it might blow up in your face.

Tips for use: The only army I never use Plasma against is IG, just because there's no point. Every other army has a 3+ or 2+ armour save floating around in their codex. Some people like to take Plasma with Vets or Stormies, but I find that to be a waste. For 20pts less then Plasma Vets in Carapace (and you ALWAYS want to have a better save then 5+), you can give your CCS 3 Plasma guns and a Medic, which means that in the case of an overheat, you have a 5+ save AND a 4+ FNP save. Stormies are okay with plasma, but remember; Plasma is Rapid Fire, so the Stormies can't use their Hotshot pistols and then charge.

5. Heavy Flamer

I would consider this to be a "maybe" weapon. It's better then it's little brother, the Flamer, and can punch through 4+ armour and wound most basic infantry on a 2+. It suffers from the same range drawback as the Flamer, though, and is VERY expensive for an SW.

Tips for use: Putting them with Counter Charge Vets and PCS' are really the only good place for them, and you might as well just save the points and go with a normal flamer instead. 3-4 Templates will burn up a lot, even if they're mid Str. I would say skip it, unless you really need it or you can't spend the points elsewhere.

6. Sniper Rifles

Ooooh boy, here we go. Now, as some of you from the IGMB know, I don't like Sniper Rifles. I may have even called them "A Swirling Vortex of Pure Suck" on more then one occasion. So, I'll try to lay out the basic stats, then explain WHY I hate them. They are pretty cheap, and have the best range of any SW. They always wound on a 4+, which can be an advantage if you're taking pot shots at the Nightbringer or other High Toughness enemies. It also makes them horrible for dealing with Str 3 armies, like the IG or Eldar. Also, they have no AP, and have to rely on Rending to punch through armour. They also cause pinning.

Okay. Here is why I hate them and they suck. Say I have a Special Weapon Squad with three Sniper Rifles. I take my shots (*rolls dice*) and get two hits. Now, I roll to wound (*rolls dice a second time*) and get a single wound. The target shall now take an Armour save (We're going to say 4+, because that way we can represent an armour save or a cover save, as most targets have a cover save with the 5th Ed rules), and passes. Assuming he didn't I rolled a Morale check, and passed that. Thus, you just payed about 40-50pts for a unit that did absolutely nothing.

Let's try it again with GLs and krak rounds (Let's assume the target has Toughness 3 or 4, and can therefore be wounded on a 2+). I have 2 hits. I have 2 wounds. Assuming they have a cover save, one failed. Assuming they were relying on Armour, both would have been dead. Thus, you can choose between a unit that will wound (and very probably kill) it's target if it hits, as opposed to a weapon that may not wound it's target, and will give them an armour save 2/3rds of the time.

Sniper Rifles are horrible against T 3 and 4. Against T3, EVERY SINGLE SW wounds on at least a 3+, except for Sniper Rifles. Against T4, the Sniper Rifle and the Flamer wound on 4+, and everything else does better. Even here, the Flamer is better, because it can dish out multiple wounds, and doesn't need to roll to hit. Against T5+, go ahead and pay the extra points for Plasma guns or Meltas, because they almost always match or best the 4+ to wound required of the Sniper Rifle, and they ALWAYS deny the target an armour save.

So, yeah, don't take Sniper Rifles.


Do You want to be the Man behind the Curtain?

So, I've been racking my brain trying to think of something to write about, and I had a great (lazy) idea: I'll ask the readers what they want me to talk about.

Here's how it works: the first idea that someone gives me in a comment that I know enough about to not sound like an idiot wins. This will be a step forward in the Blogger to reader relationship, and I hope that at least, it will entertain everyone...