Friday 28 July 2017

Primaris marines

So, with the arrival of the Reivers, I though that I would look at the new Primaris marines and what their counterparts are. Now, at the moment there is a lot of speculation as to what will happen to the old school marines. Ideas range from that fact that they are going to dissapear before 9th to they will be here for as long as 40k exists. Personally, I think that their days are numbered, but it will be at least 2 or 3 editions before they dissapear forever, so maybe another 10 years? I can't see them getting many new toys over that time, as everything will go to the Primaris marines but it does mean that we have plenty of time to replace all our models!

Image result for primaris space marines

But what Primaris models are we getting now and what are we going to get in the future? And more importantly, with the switch to the Primaris range what models are we going to loose?

Ill go through the list and see what's what, plus ill add in my pennies worth as well. At this point I'm going to say that these may not be the most coherent ramblings ever written but thats probably why I'm not a world class author!

So, HQ units;

Captain - well, we've all see this and know what the score is.

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Chapter master - I can't imagine that we wont see a chapter master, seeing as we know there are whole chapters of Primaris marines. But I'm not sure what will change over the captain. One thought is that with the new Lieutenant model, chapter masters might effectivly be gone, replaced with captains and the old captains replaced with the lieutenants model.

Librarian - yep, seen this too. Nothing has really changed in terms of model apart from the stat line.

Chaplain - I've not seen anything aboutthis apart from the transfer sheet stuff, but I can't imagine much will change again apart from the stat lines

Techmarine - now I've hear nothing at all about a Techmarine version of the Primaris marines, apart from the one on that new vehicle thing. So at least we know that there will be a Primaris techmarine.

The Elite units

Command squad (including an apothecary and company champion) - Ok, so this unit doesn't exist in the same manor as before but the component parts still exist. Now, I can't see a dedicated command squad appearing, as its essentially just normal marines now. As for the apothecary, again there are some transfers available and we've seen some artwork. As for the champion, well there is nothing yet, but I can see one appearing at some point. We also have the new Primaris ancient I this area ( either here or in the honor guard) taking over from the old standard bearer. I still not sure how there can be an ancient if they are all new marines!

Honor guard (chapter champion) - I can see some blinged up Primaris marines here, probably in some form of gravis armour. I can see these coming out with the Primaris chapter maspointThe chapter champion will I think be a Primaris version of the BT emperors champion.

Sternguard - now this is where things get a little interesting. Now, the way I look at it is that the new Hellblaster units are taking up this role, as specialist units. I expect to see other units, based on the same format as the Hellblaster but with melta or grav like weapons. Granted there not quite the same as the old Sternguard units, but they share the same sort of specialized hunting idea.

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Vanguard - now this is a unit that I'm less sure about, I guess that there will be a Primaris version but I think it will take a different form. I think we will see a more dedicated combat unit here, with less overall options but more combat focused, along similar lines to the Hellblaster units, ie single weapon dedicated.

Centurion assault and Terminator's (both assault and shooty ones) - so this is the realm of the aggressors, a mash up of both certurians and terminator's. I have always thought of the centurions as a bit of a wet fish, a case of making a model for the sake of making a model and I don't see it being replaced. I know very little about the aggressors, but from what I've read and from what I think, these will take over both roles and in time we will see some more specialized versions, ie assault versions, armed with lots of short range and combat weapons.

Dreadnought (standard + venerable + ironclad) - I think we've all seen the pregnant Primaris Dreadnought, so I think we can safely say that things are continuing in the same vain, everything is that bit bigger and better, apart from the looks anyway. I think that we will eventually see venerable and ironclad version, even if they will have different names.

Now, for the Troops;

Scouts - and the unit that started all this off, the reivers. So there not billed as scouts, as technically there not scouts but fully fledged marines, more similar to the SW wolf scouts I guess, but to me they are the replacement for scouts. We may see a more scout like unit in the future but I doubt it, as the reivers do the job of scouts in a lot of ways, all except snipers really, but that can be easily rectified.

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Tactical - intercessors, need I say any more?

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Crusader - oh, now here is a can of worms. What will happen here? The same question can be asked for a lot of the other non-codex standard units but I really don't see how the Primaris marines can and will fit into a crusader squad. Maybe if they do release a more scout like unit in the future, but I can't see reivers and intercessors mixing it up in one squad. I think this is going to be very much stuck with the old school units and it will be interesting to see what the long term future for the Black Templars will be.

So, Fast attack now;

Assault marines - I though we'd start with the easy one. The inceptors are the closest thing to assault marines at the moment. Granted, they have two big guns and no chain swords but they have a jump pack and funny shoes. These are the new assault marines and I thinkbwe will see some diversity soon, with some dedicated combat versions. Soon I think we'll see versions with big guns, the assault bolters plus melta, plasma and Flamer versions and versions with swords and shields, plus axes and mauls and probably claws too.

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Bike - I defiantly see bikes, bigger, badder and better. I think they will either be more like one man attack bikes or jet bikes. As the new transport is a skimmer, I do see the Primaris bikes being skimmers too. So, one man skimming attack bikes then?

Scout bike - reivers on bikes? That would be my guess, if they show up at all, which is just as likely.

Assault bike - I'm not entirely sure we'll get Primaris attack bikes, as I think the main bikes will sort of fill this role anyway. We may get bikes armed with things other than bolt rifles or assault bolters, but a 2 man assault bike? Not convinced we'll see one.

Landspeeder - now this is a difficult one. With anti-gravity seemingly becoming more prevalent, I can see Primaris Landspeeders being a thing, possibly taking over the attack bike role somewhat as well. I think thenew versions will be more along the lines of the heresy era javelin speeders, with lots of weapons all over the place but I do see a unit very similar to the Landspeeder existing.

Were getting to the end slowly, but up now are the Heavy support choices;

Devastators - I can see a form of devastators but I think it will be more likely tied to the aggressors. A big mobile firebase, merging devastators and centurion devastators together to form a hybrid unit that's better than the originals.

Centurion devastators - see above, plus the entry for the assault version above.

Thunderfire -the old favorite. This has long been a long time and has remain unchanged for much of that time. I don't however see it getting an equivalent Primaris version. Like many things its so iconic, yet so old, both in terms of model and in game, that a replacement would mean a while new model and I don't see that happening.

Predator - I defiantly expect to see a version of this from the Primaris marines. With the new repulsor tank on its way, I don't think it would take much to get it to where it needs to be to be called the new predator.

Whirlwinds - I like these units, but in the new system i don't see much room for them. No, if ever a there was a unit that would be dropped it would be this one.

Vindicators - a deliverer of big pie plates of death, or not as it currently stands. With the loss of pie plates, I feel that these sorts of vehicles have lost their way. While I still think there pretty good, I don't see a new version. As with the whirlwind, I think delivery systems like this are dead.

Hunter and stalker - to be these two have lost out a lot. With the changes to flyers, these two have lost their purpose. No longer is skyfire required to hit flyers and while these two do gain some rules, neither will be replaced.

Next up is the Transports;

Landspeeder storm - with scouts effectively gone and replaced by reivers, so to will the storm pass quietly in to the night.

Rhino and Razorback - the repulsor is basically the new razorback and as with the predator, it wont take a lot to make it in to the new rhino. Up armed for predator, down armed for rhino, if indeed we get a rhino. The Primaris squads seem a lot smaller so there may be no need for a rhino equivalent.

Edit: with the new info from the warhammer community page, it appears that the repulsor maybe closer to a land raider replacement, or more likely  a combination of rhino and razorback.

Image result for primaris repulsor

Drop pod - how can there not be a version of this iconic delivery system? There will be new pods, with new options. I have no doubt that this pod will be bigger and better and maybe even mobile, maybe....

Land raider (including the standard,  crusader and redeemer versions) - the replacement of the raider will in some respects depend upon the rules for aggressors and whether they will fit in to the new rhinos/razorbacks. If they do then there is little need for a raider replacement, however, I suspect that they won't, in line with the current rules and so a new raider will appear. I think this will also be a grav vehicle too, as will allthe new primaris vehicle models.

Last but by no means least, the Flyers;

Stormraven - the transport flyer, I can see a new version of this, bigger to take account of the bigger dread and marines, but also better armed.

Stormtalen and Stornhawk - if these are replaced, then it will be with a single model, somewhere inbetween the two but no doubt with more guns. However, I more see the pair disappearing and being replaced with a new flyer, the same one that replaces the Stormraven. I see it being along similar lines to the deathwatch blackstar flyer, but bigger and more powerful. This is mostly due to the Overlord and Thunderhawk situation.

So that's most  of the units covered,  not in great detail but enough to put my thoughts down on paper. I think that overall we will see a reduced lineup of units for the new primaris marines over the old marines, at least in the short term. Some units down need replacing, as some are no longer required and some are duplicated. With the increase in stats of the new marines, so units also be come unnecessary, such as centurions. Of course, I could be miles out and be talking complete and utter bullocks.

Why I'm on a roll though, I'm going to look through the other none codex compliant forces.

Tuesday 25 July 2017

Space marine chapter tactics

So with the 7th ed batreps out the way, I thought I'd get back to 8th. So With the release of the marine codex and the new chapter tactics, I though I would have a look through and see whether my marines will be staying with their current parent chapter or jumping ship to a new chapter.

Ok, so in terms of fluff, nothing will change, I'm not going to start rewriting the fluff for a chapter tactic but I am also not going to stick to the same tactic if it no longer works for me.

Now the only army that I will be looking at is the Emperors Disciples, as, for reasons that will be explained in a future post, the Brazen Hawks are on hold at the moment.

So, what are the new chapter tactics? Well, here they are, if for some reason you haven't seen them already!

So, I was running the Disciples under the Imperial Fist, mostly for the re-rolls on the sternguards special issue ammo. However, the new tactics have changed that and so a rethink is defiantly called for.

Image result for imperial fists chapter symbol

These days the Imperial Fists tactic gives you re-rolls to wound on buildings and what is effectively ignores cover. Now, I don't think that I have ever played a game within my current group that involved buildings that could be wounded/damaged and I think I've only ever played a couple of games against buildings, one being a skyshield landing pad. So re-rolling wounds against a building is pretty useless to me, so its will about the last part, which is basically ignores cover of the old days. Now, at first i thought that this was pretty underwhelming. After looking at it again, I don't think its actually that bad. As my disciples are a firepower based army, with no combat elements, having the ability for the devastators to sit back and fire at units without worrying about cover is good and it is also useful to the sternguard, who with their special issue boltguns and 30" range can also sit back and not worry about enemy units hiding in cover. So after my first thoughts about how the new chapter tactic was, well, rubbish, I've come around to thinking that its actually quite good, half of it anyway. But what about the other tactics?

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We'll start at the top, with the Ultramarines, the poster boys of the imperium. The tactics give them +1 to leadership and the ability to shoot after falling back. In the new 40k, leadership is afar more important that it use to be and there are fewer ways to alter it as well. Fearless and stubborn are gone and generally leadership values are down across the board. A +1 to leadership is now a big bonus and means that for even a full size squad of marines, taking casualties is not a big problem. For a possibility of failing a moral test, a unit will need to loose at least 4 models and for a 5 man unit thats  game over, for a tom man unit, its still not a big problem, as with ATSKNF, you effectively need to loose 4 marines and roll a double 6, possible but unlikely. The second part I think is useful but not exceptional. Being able to shoot after falling back is something that I don't think will come up very often, as most likely you'll be decimated in combat and thefore your shooting will be ineffectual or you'll be wanting to get as far from combat as possible. The modifier means that you'll also be missing half your shots, at a time you probably want as many to count as possible. Don't get me wrong, I think its a good chapter tactic overall, but not one I would use much.

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Next up is the White Scars, and this remains true to the fluff, a 2" extra advance and charging after falling back. Personally I don't think these two really go together is some respect, but could suit a army as a whole. The extra advance move will be great to units like bikes and assault marines to really shift them around the table. This is great for the early game, to get units where they need to be to counter the emery deployment and for late game, when those last objectives come in to play. The second part really only benefits assault based units. These units will want to make sure that they are first to strike to do maximum damage before the counter. Now, this could be achieved by spending a command point in your enemy's phase but in your own you would just have to hope that ypir got first strike. This means that yup can fall back and then strike again, getting that first strike in. Against other combat orientated units this can be vital. As such i see this really being used by the likes of vanguard vets and maybe a command squad, possibly by a few characters, such as champions, but o. The whole, I think that it is really the first part of the chapter tactic that you'd pick the White Scars chapter tactic for and as my list has neither bikes nor assault marines, its no use to me.

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Next up is the Black Templars and their re-rolls to charge. Now, a lot of people seem to dislike this, but it is very BT, as they have a habit of getting up close AMD personal. Re-rolling charges means that you massively increase your chances of getting in to combat and a tooled up crusader squad can do a lot of damage. Personally I think this is great for a combat army, with lots of large crusader squads, tooled up for combat. It will mean that you can be sure of getting in and getting those all important hits in first. A good tactic but I do feel its lacking a little extra, a leadership +1 would have been nice, or even extra attacks on long (9"+) charges maybe? Again though, this is for combat armies and not really any good for the disciples.

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Now we get to the Salamanders and there chapter tactic. This involves each unit getting 1 re-roll to hit and 1 re-roll to wound each turn. Personally I think this is one of the best tactics and to me it shouts PLASMA!! Plasma is still one of the best weapons on the table and in supercharged mode it even better, but with a significant downside, those 1's. Now, with this it means you can re-roll them, or 1 per unit anyway and in a 5 man unit with a plasma gun and maybe a plasma pistol (or possibly a combi-plasma), you can chance it, as there is only a small chance of getting more than one 1 and you always have your command re-roll if you do. The re-roll to wound has a different application I think, as how often do you roll on those one shot weapons (ie melta) get the hit you need only to roll a 1 to wound. This re-roll means you can roll with more confidence and rely on getting that vital wound. I really like this chapter tactic and I think that it would go well with the disciples.

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Next up are the Ravenguard and true to form, their not very easy to see. The modifier to hit when a unit is more than 12 away has numerous applications, being useful to both units like devastators and tactical squads, through to assault marines and vanguard vets. Place a unit of devastators in some ruins at the back of the field and they will have a -1 to hit and a +1 to save, making them that much harder to remove, even a tactical squad benefit, as they can operate in the open with greater impunity. The tactic also benefits the likes of assault marines and vanguard vets, meaning that they can maneuver in to position for those critical charges better, hovering off at range until its time to strike. For most units this will mean staying about 24" away, an enemy movement of 6" and then a 12" jump and a 6" charge. All in all its a good tactic and one that could be beneficial as the disciples will spend most of the time outside that 12" bubble. Again though, another little extra would have been nice, even something as little as a single re-rolled charge or save per turn. Nothing special, just a little extra something.

Image result for iron hands chapter symbol

Finally we get to the Iron Hands, the mechanical men. These guys gain, what in the old days would have been a 6+ fnp, and is pretty much exactly what they had before. Now, while this is not ground breaking, it is good. It is one of the few ways to counter mortal wounds, something that can cut through marines quickly and easily. Granted you only have a 1/6 chance, but thats better than none at all. I think this tactic is useful but I don't see it as useful to the disciples. I believe that it will apply to all Iron hands models, vehicles included, but I still don't think its very useful to me. This is probably also the only one that I don't think really needs a second part to the tactic, as it is pretty good, but it would be nice if all the tactics had a second part, even if it was gust for the sake of it.

At the end of the day the choice really comes down to three tactics, the Imperial fists, salamanders and  raven guard. These are all great tactics, each giving some good benefits. All three are useful for the disciples, ignoring cover bonuses is great, meaning that there is no hiding place from the devastators or the sternguard. However, the that -1 to be hit modifier is pretty big as well, especially now that modifiers happen after re-rolls. Again, it means that the units can hide away and shoot and also be that bit harder to hit in return. However, right now there is really only one tactic that really stands out and  that is the salamanders chapter tactic. Being quite a small and elite force its important that you do as much damage as possible every time you shoot and with the re-roll options for each unit, it is possible. It could mean the dirrerance between 3 missiles hitting and only two wounding and all 4 hitting and 3 wounding and at d6 wounds, it could make quite a difference.

As the force is probably going to be fielded with the stone dragons or an inquisitorial force, the leadership traits are not as importantband while it might be nice to have a relic or two in the force, its not essential. So as things stand, I will be looking at the salamanders chapter tactic and waiting to see what the Wolves get.

Up next will be my thoughts on The new primaria marines and there role/position in the established marine battle order.

Friday 21 July 2017

Imperium Vs Harliquins. (7th ed)

this is the very last game of 7th that I played and was a bit of a mash up of units that hadn't seen the battle field in a while. With the new rules, many of these units will probably see the battlefield a lot more that they have in the last few years.

The list included 3 vet squads, 2 with 3x flames and one with 3x melta, these were accompanied by two command squads, my usual two, creeds squad (although minus creed on the occasion) and plasma command. The force also featured two Russ battle tanks and a hell hound. To finish off there was a scion platoon, with a command squad and 3 small squads, who would be deep striking in.

The main battle line

Melta vets to the flank

LRBT, a very lengthy WiP 

My opponent was playing Harliquins today and having played them before, I was expecting a tough fight. He had brought a very mobile army, with two units of bikes, a couple of voidweavers and a starweaver. There were also a couple of troupes, death jesters, shadow seers and a solitaire. A nasty little force, but quite a fragile one, if I could pin it down.

The Quins right flank, facing off against the melta vets.

Some Quins characters

Turn 1

Didn't start well, mostly due to having the initiative stolen from me! This meant that he got the jump on me and moved all of his jet bikes and skimmers forward, while his troupes stayed back. As a result he unloaded all of his haywire in to my LRBT's. This was not good news, I had completely forgotten about the abundance of haywire in the Harliquins army. As a result of all the shooting, one Russ was immobilized and on 1 hull point and one left on 2 hull points. Not great for the top of turn 1! Not a lot else happened luckily but my reply want much use either!

Moving forward 

I moved forward with as much of my units as I could, the only ones that remained stationary were the vets to the left and the command squad in the centre, both were holding objectives. The tanks did little damage to the two skimmers, taking just one hull point of one of the skimmers, their invun saves dealing with the rest. Unfortunately this mean that they could shoot normally next turn, which want great for the tanks!

Tanks vs skimmers

Not a pretty view!

Turn 2

Things didn't get much better at the start of turn 2 either. The jet bikes pounced on the vets, who somehow managed to survive, even though they took some losses. The other skimmers also moved forward, going after the tanks again, but due to some bad scatter, only one tank was destroyed, the immobilized one luckily! The other survived to fight on.

The jet bikes pounce.

Retaliation was swift though, with the plasma command and chimera targeting g the third flyer, destroying it in a hail of plasma and laser fire, Unfortunately the plasma command squad didn't fair very well, loosing 2 to gets hot and a third when the skimmer exploded. 3 of the 4 scions turned up though, just the command squad remained behind. They didn't do masses, but they did enough to get noticed. In very un-guardsmen like fashion as well, one squad of Flamer vets charged one of the other skimmers, doing no damage at all. The hell hound was having a go at the other skimmer, but not much luck there either. At this point in the game things look like they could go either way.

Retaliation, flamer vets just in shot at the top.

The guard lines.

Turn 3

I didnt get any pictures of turn 3 for some reason and my memory is a bit sketchy, as i usually use the picture to remind me of what happened. My opponent didn't do much this turn, just moving a few models around to get better positions for charging. I do know that during this turn the jet bikes were finally dispatched by the vets after another round of combat. Also the character person, possibly a Solitare?, did its jump across the field to attack the command squad hiding in the ruins, causing a few casualties on the vets. In reply, my last russ decided to ram the skimmer that had moved in to my deployment zone, smashing in to smithereens. The Scions on the far side tried to eliminate as many of the remaining Troupes as possible and the hellhound in the centre toasted the skimmer up the top, shaking the crew.

Turn 4

Turn 4 and the foul Xenos were starting to get thin on the ground. Again, my opponent did a bit of shooting, whittling down the melta vet squad and doing damage to one of the flamer vet squads. The Scions proved to be a little more durable, but not much, loosing a few members from pretty much every squad. The Scion squad in the centre of the building, next to the hellhound were eliminated by a combination of death jester, solitaire and the other one (XXX). At the other side of the board, the command squad and solitaire went on a bit of a slap fest.

The slap fest

Scions eliminated and the Quins ready to pounce on the hellhound.

The battlefield

In retaliation for eliminating the Scions in the centre, the chimera and vets gave it there all, easily killing of characters. Not a lot else happened, as the slap fest continued and the vets on the far side held there ground.

The chimera supporting its hellhound brother

The guard start moving forward to swarm the ruins

Turn 5

At this point in the game, the little man turned up and started to cause chaos! He borrowed the remaining Russ and went on a little drive!

The tank parked in its garage!

Another shot

In game, the Quins made a bit of a last ditch attempt to stave off the guard advances, with all the units remaining in the centre and right side of the board shooting and charging. Unfortunately for the Quins, the Scions were in no mood to get up close and personal, gunning down a number on the charge and dealing with the couple that remained in short order. In other news the slap fest came to an end with the death of the solitaire and the survival of my warlord with 1 wound, the rest of the squad sacrificed themselves for their commander. During my turn, most units just moved around to consolidate themselves on to various objectives.

At the end of the game, we totted up the points, and once all the maelstrom points were taken in to account the score was 10 to 9. The guardsmen had just edged out the foul xenos, taking the win. So thats it, all my 7th edition games done and dusted and on to 8th! I will will have an 8th edition report up soon, as i have got my first games under my belt now. Ill do a full writ up on my thoughts as soon as i get a chance to sit down and write them.

Below are some picture taken by the little man.