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Saturday, 14 August 2010

Bangleonia Ver 2

Email received, regarding the lovely Blood Angels (of Blood!) ...cookies for anyone who gets the title reference without using Wikipedia...Assuming you aren't ashamed to display the requisite knowledge...




"Of course, I have to start off by appreciating your blog, and the great material you put out.  (not to mention the smartass comment and hilarity at times)  But I was just wondering what your thoughts were on a Blood Angles list that I came up with a while ago. (I think it took all of us about 5 minutes to see that all jump packs was viable).  Well, here's the list I had in mind:

Librarian 125 Jump Pack, Blood Lance, Shield of Sanguinius

Librarian 125 Jump Pack, Blood Lance, Shield of Sanguinius

Sanguinary Priest 90 Jump Pack, Infernus Pistol
Sanguinary Priest 90 Jump Pack, Infernus Pistol

Sanguinary Priest 85 Jump Pack, Combi-Flamer
Sanguinary Priest 85 Jump Pack, Combi-Flamer

10 Assault Marines 225 2 Meltas, Infernus Pistol

10 Assault Marines 225 2 Meltas, Infernus Pistol
10 Assault Marines 245 Melta/Flamer, Infernus pistol, Power Fist
10 Assault Marines 245 Melta/Flamer, Infernus pistol, Power Fist
10 Assault Marines 230 Melta/Flamer, Power Fist
10 Assault Marines 230 Melta/Flamer, Power Fist

2000

The plan is to Combat Squad and Deepstrike everything, and between the Sergeants, Sanguinary Priests and Librarians,  I can double up on the special weapons in 10/12 squads.  (with the blood lance subbing in for a melta of course).  I am a little unsure as to the necessary number of Flamers, and my thought process dictated that I didn't need that many considering you have 60 Assault Marines to kill infantry lol. (Although maybe you give some advice on this, as it won't be that hard to just shuffle a few special weapons around)   

Basically my biggest questions are whether you think that Vanguard veterans, or the Honour Guard are necessary in a list like this? While I do think that are quite shiny and generally awesome, I just feel like the basic Assault Marines with Sanguinary Priest support is so efficient.  Or does taking nearly exclusively Assault Marines lead the list to be too one-dimensional?

REPLY:

I'm afraid I DO think they're necessary.  I will come back to that though.  Some Special Weapon specific feedback first.

In a list like this, positioning is much more important than with a lot of lists.  Dropping in Meltas is an excellent way to guarantee Side/Rear shots, as opposed to the issues things like Riflemen and Predators usually face, where it's hard to get side shots on Castle'd foes, or otherwise defensively minded positioning.  As a result, Flamers become proportionally weaker than in a normal list, despite greater proximity to the foe.  In addition, they are less important because you are an assault-based force, with a LOT of Furious Charge going on, and a hatful of attacks.  Of course that's not to say you will not want ANY Flamers - some things can't be shifted easily, and some things, like Orks, are too boring to shift through CC alone.  Oh, and you CAN lose there.  Especially if they charge you more than vice-versa.  Overall though, you can get by with them only on a couple platforms.

Now, back to the regularly scheduled programming...

Sadly, having just RAS does make the army too one-dimensional.  It forces you to sit and suffer through an enemy turn before getting the chance to assault.  Against some armies, for example 5-Raider lists or other small elite armies, this isn't truly that big a deal.  Against mobile and/or shooty forces, this can be crippling as they apply even their anti-tank with not insignificant results.  The like of Long fang squads and Las/Plas Razors (but obvs LFs are worse) are devastating to your squads, reducing your fighting capacity to virtually nil in a single salvo - and don't forget your men can and will run.

Flamer Combat Squads are exceptionally vulnerable, as they can be Tank Shocked, repeatedly.  It is hilarious to Tank Shock such units with Grav Tanks, especially - I remember on one occasion forcing a unit nearly 40" off the board with 3 Wave Serpents...admittedly, it wasn't Combat Squadded, and had a Libby and Priest attached, hence the ease (and desire) of devoting so many resources to the task.

Vanguard are the counter to this, allowing you to tie up (and hopefully not butcher!) such threats, using the maligned Heroic Intervention that was so easily turned from a rule that was interesting but poor, to a valuable (and formidable) weapon in the arsenal.

Honour Guard, on the other hand, have a different role. These are the real heavy hitters, the beaters of the Jump Army.  Facing off against a Tervigon? You won't kill it even with a double Melta unit, assuming you somehow manage to get within 6" safely.  You need the extra 'oomph' that comes from having a trio or quartet of shots to strip wounds off them.  Some vehicles are of course resistant to Melta fire (Stormraven, Wave Serpent...Monolith...) and require more than 2 shots to even suppress reliably, altough even on Transports etc two Melta shots is not usually statistically enough to kill them - while it obviously CAN it isn't something you want to rely on.  doubling up squads isn't something you should be unwilling to do anyway, as you look to maximise the effect of your Chalices - but the random nature of Reserves, DoA or no, means you can't be certain of being able to do it...and that can become an issue.

Regarding the Librarians, I am a little unsure of their role.  Not the role you have earmarked them for - that much is clear...no, I mean the role they NEED to fulfil in such a list.  I fear that your configuration is slightly wide of the mark (and, I happily admit, it was MY initial reaction to the Powers list too!) I wonder if perhaps Stelek had it right all along with his S10 shenanigans.  Maybe it's because TWC are scary to Jump lists...maybe it's because carving hulls to shrapnel is that much more satisfying in CC...then again, there is also FotD to consider.  "Hello HWS! Boo!" "Aaargh!" *HWS Flees*

Frankly, I think there is probably no 'right' answer - but I think that Shield is not necessarily stronger than either of these rivals (or maybe even Blood Boil...taking out Nobs is funny [but not in public!]) Having Storm Shields (cf Vanguard Vets, Honour Guard) mitigates the need for Shield too...since anti-tank goes into them much more readily than your Combat Squads (random thought, has anyone ever seen X-Men Marines? I call it!) BUT Shield can be activated on the foe's turn, allowing you to Lance and Force Weapon to your heart's content!  Aaargh, conflicted feelings!

Right, let's set to the list.  Well, we don't need 4 Priests if we drop any RAS, and we will, so let's go to two, and make up the deficit with Honour Guard Chalices.  We can also do without them carrying Infernus.  As neat as the extra Melta shot is, they are most vulnerable in CC, and it is CC where they need that extra boost.  S5 I5 PWs are always fun to have, too.  They WILL see combat at some stage.  Tragic, but unavoidable, like Michael Bay making another film.   :'(

Let's start with what we're keeping:

Librarian;
Jump Pack, Blood Lance, [Second Power] - 125


Librarian;
Jump Pack, Blood Lance, [Second Power] - 125

Sanguinary Priests:
Sanguinary Priest; Jump Pack
Sanguinary Priest; Jump Pack - 150

[Ideally, they would at least get Melta Bombs, but we'll see if we have points (we don't, really...)]

10 Assault Marines;
2 Meltaguns, Infernus Pistol, Power Fist - 250

[Slightly different from what you listed - here's why - the Infernus adds a bonus threat to the Combat Squad lumbered with it, and the Power Fist is pretty much indispensable.  Not every mission will see Combat Squadding, though the majority will, which is why the squads below wish to avoid Flamers - and because, if they all get to fire, 3 Melta weapons should be killing any vehicle that needs dead.  Hopefully...]

10 Assault Marines;
2 Meltaguns, Infernus Pistol, Power Fist - 250

10 Assault Marines;
2 Meltaguns, Infernus Pistol, Power Fist - 250

[Now we have three of these units, we can go back and see about getting those Honour Guard and Vanguard.  Ideally we would double up on each, but I doubt the points are there for such a venture.]

Given this doubt, we add up how many points we have used/remaining.  Funkily, that is 1150/850.  :O  That's an interesting coinkadink, seeing as how that equates to: [It actually WAS coincidence this time, but I worked out how many point I would need just before working out how many there were available, and was frankly delighted with the way things worked out!]

Honour Guard;
Jump Packs, 3 Meltaguns, 2 Flamers - 205


Honour Guard;
Jump Packs, 3 Meltaguns, 2 Flamers - 205

Vanguard Veterans;
Jump Packs, Thunder Hammer [Sergeant], 2 Storm Shields - 220

Vanguard Veterans;
Jump Packs, Thunder Hammer [Sergeant], 2 Storm Shields - 220



Thing is, that takes us to 12 Marines less than yours (not bad, not necessarily better) and almost giving us a Chalice for every ten Marines.  Now, that's a pretty juicy ratio, and I'm loathe to mess with it.

Uhm...the next paragraph is kinda void, since it discussed dropping the now-obsolete 5th Chalice.  So, I've cut it, since I can't see how to adapt it. : /

I'm not sure if you read the modelling bit, so I will edit it in if not.






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