Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Putting a thorn in the side of the metagame.

If you ask someone what is 40k 5th edition all about, the first and obvious answer is "mech". Mechanized armies, with all of your units in transports and support tanks. The reason for this is that transports are very survivable and all vehicles can move and shoot. Combined with some price drops in the last few books and/or undercosted vehicles (130pts for a vendetta? really? wtf?) and you have a lot of armor on the table.

The obvious response to this is more anti-tank, both melta for short range and volume of fire for long range. Not to mention both of these help tremendously against TMC's, so much so that the Tyranid book never really excelled.

So how do orks play into this? First, our transports (like eldar) are horrendously overcosted compared to newer armies, lack any form of real firepower (unlike Chimeras) and are very susceptible to competitive builds - Manticores are the end of battlewagon spam. Trukks were decent compared to 50pt rhinos. Compared to 55pt las-plas razorbacks, however, they are just junk.

The question becomes how do we deal with this? The answer is to de-mech, and I don't think any army can do it better then Orks (except maybe missile launcher spam wolves). Kan walls are great, but are slow and almost require 2 KFF meks which mean you leave a lot of power off the table in the form of either Ghazzy or a warboss. Nob bikers are still amazing, but a bad round of cover saves and they evaporate to melta fire so they require great care to use.

Having your opponent use a lascannon to kill an ork boy is pure win for the Ork player. Torrent of fire has lost some of it's luster with lots of armor, T6 TMC's and FNP blood angels at every turn and is being replaced with Ap2, which is a good thing for Orks.

So lets look at a couple units and how they help de-mech while taking on mech. First and most obvious is the lootas. Lootas are starting to lose some effectiveness over time as more AV12 and AV13 comes into the scene. however I'm not really too concerned with taking out vehicles as much as I am about stopping them from shooting and/or moving. A stock chimera can deal out 3 S6 and 3 S5 shots a turn, with 4+ of them over 2-3 turns adds up to a lot of dead orks. Manticores..ugh I fucking hate manticores lol. Shaking a couple vehicles a turn can help you get across the table which is where you want to be. Lootas, like everything else in the Ork codex are not reliable but are completely devastating with a couple good rolls.

The next unit I love for this, especially against IG, is the lobbas. Yes, lobbas. If you're not using battlewagons or kans, you have 3 free HS slots which can be filled with super cheap guns that simply rock. And if you have a game where they do nothing, then they are so cheap you've lost nothing.

The main points about lobbas is they are barrage, which means they always hit vehicles on the side armor. Being S5 means they can pen any IG artillery or chimeras, and glance predators/vindicators/rhinos. Barrage also means taking away normal cover saves, so the IG player can't hide the Manticore behind other tanks for a 4+ save. Also against IG if you do blow up a chimera with the lootas then the passengers (unless they have carapace armor) are sitting ducks to lobba fire...remember vehicle craters are cover (defined as difficult terrain), but NOT area terrain so cover against barrage. Lastly, as barrage they cause pinning. Sure against MEQ there isn't a great chance to pull it off, but it can happen (especially with LD8 combat squads or leaderless Long fangs). Lastly, they don't require LoS so they can be hidden behind almost anything.

Again they are so cheap that a single good action..shaking a manticore for 1 turn or a single pinning of a long fang squad ...means the lobbas have earned their slot. For 84pts a unit (with 3 ammo runts) they are just phenomenal. Ammo runts..3 pts for a re-roll? how can you beat that?

I was playing my cousin against his blob IG, and a single round of lobba fire killed 16 guardsmen. 16! They suddenly went from an ignored unit the the top target.

So that ends part one of De-meching with orks. Next time I'll get into the possibilities behind a resurgence of tankbustas and some army lists to test out.

Friday, October 22, 2010

The projects are stacking up..

Yay for lots to do! So much so that I can't seem to decide where to concentrate.

First, my completed Blood Axe Kan. Love this guy.

I finally picked up some plasmaguns, so was able to finish the las-plas turret for my first MSU assault squad. I sold my main tactical squad on ebay, used bolters and missile launcher from the second to fill out the Devastators. Now I'm using their rhinos for assault squads. To start they will be las-plas with 5 assault marines, with power weapon and meltagun each. I'll still keep my Rhino of assault marines and the jump pack guys. I still like the combination of mech and jump.

Next I finished assembly on the last 10 boys for my 2nd shoota squad, 9 shootas and a rokkit. I also primed the stompa and killkrusha. It was a nice, warm sunny Sunday in late October so I took the opportunity to spray them while I had the chance.

Last project is a AC/LC Predator but when I opened it, the rhino part was completely messed up, the rear door has major recesses and the sides are thinner then normal. Obviously not enough plastic was injected. I keep forgetting to call GW though, need to get that done.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Starting to ramp up the painting again..

Ever since OFCC finished, I've been spending less time on the hobby side. Burnout after killing myself for a year on Blood Angels, combined with both kids in school for the first time sucked my time and energy.

It turns out, I missed it. I like getting things done. The last week has seen me ramp up the time spent painting. There is one thing that is an absolute fact:

if you paint, models will get finished!

Shipped off the charity land speeder, traded 20 boys plus some bits for a box of tactical marines to build a couple MSU assault squad from, and sold the LRC which I don't see me using any more. I just need to pickup 4 plasma guns for razorback turrets.

Finished the next 8 boys for my 2nd shootaboy squad, bringing the total to 20. Finished 2 Deathskull kans.

My 3rd Goff kan is being down for a how-to video, so it will take more time. The last kan, the partner to the 2 deathskulls, will be a bloodaxe. Just have to decide what cammo pattern I'm going to use.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Tau hammer unit? WTF?

For September's monthly league at my FLGS I decided to mix it up and play Tau.

I have to say I was very impressed with how well the army played. I went with a full-on Farsight Bomb. First, the list:

HQ: Farsight
HQ: Bodyguard (all have shield generators, HW target lock, HW drone controller. Suits with 2 systems have HW multi-trackers)
1: TL Plasma, Gun Drone, Shield Drone

2: TL Missile Pod, 2x gun drone

3: Plasma, Airburst, 2x gun drone

4: Plasma, cyclic Ion, 2x gun drone

5: Plasma, missile pod, gun drone, shield drone

6: TL Fusion, gun drone, shield drone

Troop: 8 Firewarriors, Shas'ui

Troop: 10 Firewarriors, Shas'ui

-Devilfish, Multi-tracker, disruption pod, flechette dischargers

Fast: 6 Pathfinders, 2x rail rilfe

-Devilfish, Multi-tracker, Disruption pod, flechette dischargers

Elite: 3x XV8

1: Team leader, HW drone controller, HW mult-tracker, HW target lock, TL flamers, missile pod, 2x gun drone
2: TL Burst cannon, shield generator

3: Burst cannon, flamer, multi-tracker

Heavy: Hammerhead, railgun, multi-tracker, disruption pod, flechette discharger, SMS

Heavy: 3xXV88
3x A.S.S Team leader with HW drone controller, HW target lock, 2x shield drone

I have to say that the Farsight unit, with 7 suits all with wound allocation plus 12 drones for ablative wounds is just unbelievably good. The drones suck up battlecannon and lascannon hits until you get into combat. Combined with every suit having a shield generator I really didn't have to fear anything! Move, shoot, move, brings me into assault range quickly, which is where I want to be. oh, btw, the total for the unit comes to 865pts!

The markerlights were so useful, I can't see ever playing without them again. The main job was taking out cover saves from vehicles so the broadsides could do their job. The rail rifles never did much, so I might drop them. But the flexibility is nice, and infiltrating quite often gave me side armor shots. And of course the devilfish for helping the flamer suits get on target.

Broadsides: OMG this unit is by far the champs of the Tau codex. I only wish I could take 3 units and farsight at the same time! So resiliant, so powerful in vehicle-heavy 5e..I love them! I was constantly amazed how well they did..taking out a LR and a rhino in one turn one game, and a manticore and a vendetta in one turn another.

Game 1:
vs Pedro Cantor marines. 2x sternguard, 2x tactical, 5 termies, 5 objectives
My opponent played everything in reserve. This reallly messed me up, and I didn't move to the objectives in time and the game ended on turn 5 before I could get there. I learned that being timid with the Farsight unit is a bad, bad idea. I think I was overly afraid of TH/SS termies.

Game 2:
vs IG 2 demolishers, 5 chimeras, 2 vendettas, etc, etc
Smashed him aside. The railguns just opened up the tin cans like crazy, and the drones took all the demolisher hits until I could take them out. Easy win

Game 3:
vs IG: 2 blobs, 2 vendettas, 3 LRBT
Again this really wasn't much of a challenge. farsight ran right at the IG and by the time he got there all the vehicles had been neutralized. My favorite part was using 2 markerlights and 10 firewarriors to kill 15 out of 20 guardsmen in one turn.

Game 4:
vs Blood Angels.
I lost this one, because I got hit by a blood talon dreadnought. He didn't do much damage but then I missed with all 4 of Farsight's hits, and the unit got caught in sweeping advance. before that I was doing really well, opening up the razorbacks and predators with ease. I'm sure I could have won or at least tied if farsight had opened up the Dread. This was the only game Farsight died.

Game 5;
Vs IG..again. 2 manticores, 2 vendettas, 2x 30 blobs, Straken
This was a great game, my opponent is a top notch player. It was tough and well fought. Again though, the vehicles were like tin foil and I got them all. Farsight took out both straken and an entire blob, and probably would have done the same to the 2nd blob if the game went past turn 5. ended a tie, but I think I was in a better position in the end. Low light was a single guardsman assaulting 8 firewarriors, killed 1 and then I failed to wound on 7 hits back, and the warriors died to sweeping advance...sigh.

So that put me at 2-2-1, and I got 4th place for the month! It was a lot of fun, I've never played a 800+ unit before and it was amazing, worth every single one. Farsight is a good threat to everyone, with that I5, WS5 and 4 base 2d6 armor pen.

Tau is an interesting army. They still have the best tank killer in the game (I'll take 72" range over 18" range and lance that can be canceled any day..sorry zoans) . With 5e being so vehicle-heavy, that means Tau has an advantage if you can figure out how to mitigate the glaring weaknesses. Farsight bomb is one way to do this. Not only a usable CC unit, it is incredibly resilient.

Now if only stimulant injector wasn't special issue..