Friday, November 8, 2013

Plasma Everywhere? And the 30K/40K interactions...

So, started the post on my tablet running the mobile Blogger app....  Have to say that was a failure.  No automatic saving of what you are typing, and flipping between apps on the device apparently does at some random point simply erase everything you have typed...  Lesson learned.  Blogging from the mobile device is emergency only, and the web site itself does not work on Chrome , so...  Woo Hoo!  Guess Google is behind on their own standards :-)  ah well...

So, after playing a fair number of games with the Heresy era Legion...  The one thing I am looking at changing is to bring a Tactical Support Squad loaded out with Plasma guns.  Yes, a 15 point upgrade per Trooper, but...  It is a Plasma Gun, so Str 7, AP 2 and likely 2 shots each at 12" range?  Yes, I will take some casualties from my own weapons, but the Medic (Apothecary) for the FnP roll should help...  And provide another 2+ save body to help for the inevitable HtH...

Thus far, I have been running EVERY SGT...  OK, EVERY body I can get into Artificer Armor in that armor.  The big squads with 2-4 of them in the Squad make for an annoyingly difficult thing to take off the table.  Power Weapons where I can as well.  Finding that there is a LOT more HtH when everyone is fielding Marines and thus not a lot of weapons that efficiently deal with 3+ armor.  Challenges, massed attacks, etc. are all pretty important, but the simple ability to deny an Armor save is the thing that is winning more combats for my lads in the 6th...

Which leads to another sort of observation...  The Legions are REALLY well focused on dealing with Xenos.  Well, 5+ armor and to a great extent 4+ and worse really...  Things like the Volkite weapons are BRUTAL against IG, Tyranid or Eldar swarm type armies, but mostly an afterthought against 3+ bodies.  Yes, eventually they cause a few casualties, but so often I have a 10 man Tactical Support Squad (TSS) open up on a group of Marines in the open and...  Do effectively nothing, maybe get 1-3 casualties out of the massed Volkite fire.  One reason I am looking at swapping for Plasma.  At least with the Plasma I get some casualties and take out a big chunk of most squads that are trying to assault my position.  And I can overload with things like the Havoc Launchers for a lot of Str 5 AP 5 blast markers...  Yes, I intend to build a few to put on my Rhino Hulls (magnetized)...  Something about having 30+ Rhino Hulls, repainting a bunch of them in the old Wolves Legion colors is not going to have ANY impact on my other Marine armies.  But again, AP 5, so unlikely to actually DO much against my primary Heresy Era enemies...

Think that is probably the biggest issue I have with the Legion lists.  Everything is so focused, nothing is really a generalist or "Swiss Army Knife".  Tactical Squads are just Bolters, no Heavy/Special weapons at all.  The Heavy and Support Squads are all armed with the same weapons, so all Volkite Calvers, Plasma Guns, Missile Launchers or whatever...  On one level, that makes it simple and if you KNOW what you are facing, you can build a specific counter.  But I MUCH prefer a more generalist approach.  My Grey Hunter squads in 40K have a little of everything.  Rifle, Pistol, Sword, a Flamer or Melta in the Squad, likely a Power Weapon and/or a hidden Werewolf to multiply their HtH presence and riding in a Razorback for Heavy Weapon support.  So, the small squad has the ability to move independently, support others like themselves and actually DO a fair amount of damage on the field...  Yes, far less resilient than the giant 20 man squads, but standing off and firing the Las Cannon/Plasma into them, the new Wolves will cause a few casualties without any possibility of taking any until the Legion gets into Assault range or has something else deal with the Razorback.  Having said all of that, I still believe that the 40K Tactical Squad is mostly useless except for it's ability to camp Objectives, and armies with other Scoring options are almost always doing better overall without the "tax" required to actually try to win some games based on the Missions themselves.  One reason I bring Scouts in my Crimson Fist lists, frankly they are simply cheaper scoring bodies that I can try to flank or otherwise hide to keep alive.  3+ armor is simply NOT enough these days to try and stay alive when other armies like the Eldar and Tau have so many weapons on their basic, common units that simply ignore your Armor and in a lot of cases any potential Cover saves you might have had....

And so, back to Rock-Paper-Scissors I guess...  Marines (40K) deal well enough with the 4 Tau Riptide if they build specifically for it, as do the Eldar with the same caveat.  Tau/Eldar are pretty much dominating the competitive scene otherwise...  And ironically, the 30K Heresy era things seem fairly well balanced against all of the above...  For the moment, with the breakneck speed of releases in 6th Edition these days, who knows what will happen when the Tyranids hit the field with a new book or the IG, or...  :-)  Whatever comes next frankly...