Sunday, 4 November 2012

I would walk 500 inches: part II

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And so begins the second post about the beleaguered yet dogged footsloggers of the 40k universe. In my last post I kind of skimmed over the general benefits of footslogging along with the benefits of transports (know your enemy and such like) so in this article I'm going to go into slightly more detail. To begin with, I've postponed my 'Deployment and Power of the Mind' post so that I can go over a footslogging list. My reasoning is that I want to go over what I'm thinking when I'm writing a footslogging list and why I'm making my decision. Also, I will be using vassal pictures in the coming articles to give examples and this will be the list I will be using there. I felt I couldn't just show units going down in 'tactical' deployment (or as close as I get to tactical) without actually explaining why I'd picked those units. So, enough explanations, onto the list:

Grey Knights 1000pts

HQ -  Brotherhood Champion
Elites - 7x purifiers -halberds, incinerator
Troops - 10x Strike Squad - 2xpsycannon, hammer, psybolts
               5x Termies - 4xhalberds, 1xhammer, psycannon
               5x Strike Squad
Heavy - Dreadnought -TL lascannon

This list is, you may have noticed, not particularly optimised. I still want to try shifting stuff around and trying new things but so far it has fared pretty well. I'll start this article looking at the roles of each of my units in this list and explaining why they're there.

The List
AP3 template? That could be...uncomfortable...damn cool model though
Brotherhood Champion

Now I've already done a post on the good ol' BroChamp (which can be found here for anyone interested). His main role in this list is being a cheap HQ (I'm a pure GK player so sadly I ruled inquisitors out for myself) but he also brings some nice bonuses, mainly the rerolls to hit for a charging unit. This can turn the mediocre WS of the Termies or the Purifiers into something pretty scary on the charge. Don't underestimate this, it is probably his biggest asset, duelling and 'Rapier-Strike-ing' an expensive enemy character is cool but don't underestimate the humble rerolls.

7xpurifiers - halberds, incinerator

Here is a choice that I enjoy playing, but could probably be improved on. 7 is not a great number for a squad. 5 or 10 is probably better for the extra weapons but 5 felt too small and the maximum models I have available for this squad is 7, so 7 it is. They are, ultimately sacrificial though. In 5th I would stick the BroChamp with them and just charge right at the enemy to take shots to save the rest of the list. With Halberds, rerolls, cleansing flame and that incinerator for pre-charge (if you can keep it alive which I seem unable to do) they can pretty much batter most stuff into the ground. However, they are fragile (for marines) and will die at exactly the same speed as tactical marines for nearly 2x the points. For this reason, I'm considering plonking the BroChamp in the Termies instead (they're still a potent assault unit with him and now he's worth a Victory Point for Slay the Warlord he kind of needs to survive) and possibly swapping these guys for something else. Maybe some interceptors...I need to look into this more because when they work they work well.

10xStrike Squad -hammer, 2x psycannon, psybolts

What can't this squad do? It's durable (as marines are), can hold its own in assault (for a bit, just don't expect them to win it. 1A is 1A, no matter what fancy weapon you're carrying) and can shoot pretty much anything. The psycannon are fantastic for shooting infantry and vehicles of all flavours. They won't do much to high AV like 14 (trust me I've tried taking Land Raiders down with them, it's a nightmare) but to anything else they can pretty reliably tackle it. This squad is also great against fliers, it has a very high volume of shots at S5 at its lowest, meaning it can glance most of the fliers around with basic storm bolters. This squad is my bread and butter, it can fill in any gap the rest of my list isn't doing, bar assault (which it can do, just not very well). Don't forget you can Combat Squad it if you need to capture multiple objectives or think you may need to split the psycannon to hit different units. I am never disappointed with this squad. If you want, you can drop the psybolts, 20 pts is an alright price when it's going on 10 models, but for most jobs standard storm bolters will do. This is personal preference. If you need the points drop them, but otherwise I'd recommend them (though I do fight lots of venoms, and S5 pens them pretty well.

 5x Termies - 4xhalberds, 1xhammer, psycannon

I do love Termies. When they're scoring as well I just don't think I can say no. This is a fairly minimalistic squad. The Halberds are to help them drop their opponents before they can swing (the BroChamp rerolls help here) and the Hammer is, of course, to help in case they run into a Monstrous Creatures or Walker. Now, you could probably keep the swords instead of getting Halberds as this will make you slightly more surviveable but with the drop in AP2 combat weapons the main danger for termies is volume of attacks, which the Halberd will help with more. Also, if you kill them at I6, you won't need to use your invun. This squad is like a more durable version of the SS, it can do most things pretty well (the psycannon is relentless so always fires 4 shots. Scary). This is generally my counter attack unit. It walks up shooting and then either mops up units nearby or charges in to save any of my other squads that have got stuck in combat. They can usually tip it in my favour. If there's a far forward objective these will probably go get it, but the big SS is often accompanying them at least to midfield. They support each other well.

5xStrike Squad

An easy decision to back up. These are my objective sitters. That's it. If anything comes too close, I will usually pull something back a little to support them. They can hold their own, but will generally just sit right at the back in cover and go to ground. They just need to capture an objective. In Kill Point missions they just add more volume of fire into something that's already being shot. I think this squad will likely stay in the list. It's a bit dull and rarely does anything interesting but it's very useful.

Dreadnought - TL Lascannon

What? No Psyfleman? First off I don't own a psyfleman dread. Probably should get that fixed as they are very useful but for now this guy will do. Psyflemen also work best when there's 2 or more as well so for a lone Dread I prefer the dual purpose of this guy (I'll get to that) The Lascannon is an expensive upgrade for 1 shot, but at S9 AP2 there's really nothing it can't bust. Usually it will at least shake a tank and reduce its fire and that's what it's there for. Anti-vehicle. It's the only gun in the WHOLE list that is greater than 24". This is a large flaw in the list, but it's mainly a large flaw for GKs so there's not much I can do to counter act this. I mentioned duality before as well and now I'll go into this. Psyflemen shoot, and shoot very well. They're good at hanging at the back, near maximum range to reduce return fire, and take stuff out well. This Dread marches up with my midfield stuff, plinking (well, battering) tanks down. The reasons are this: his reinforced Aegis improves the psychic defence against anything with 12", so against shooty psykers this guy can really help my units if he's near them. It takes a LD10 psyker down to LD6 for psychic tests when targeting one of my units. They are now failing nearly half the time! This is a great boon, really. But only when it comes into effect. Not many list feature psykers, and even then most of them will be able to buff their own squads instead of shooting so this power will not come into play. But it's still nice to have. He also has his(DOOM)Fist. What a name. In this regard he acts as another counter assault unit, pitching in to bail out units in trouble, tying up squads that can't hurt him (until they voluntarily fail morale as they can do now. He can still try to run them down if they do this however and I4 is pretty reliable for this really) or going to punch up MCs and other walkers with his S10 attacks. A2 isn't a large amount of attacks so he's better for grinding through things than smashing a bloody path through them so don't be too overconfident and he should be able to make a fair impact on the game.

 Now I hope that's explained the thoughts behind a footslogging list a little better. I promise that I will follow up with my statement last post and the next article will be on deployment and the mind. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go clean my boots.

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