Monday, May 3, 2010

Blood Angels vs. Khan Termies?

Well, I played another game with my Blood Angels, this time against Vince's double-raider list with Khan and Termies.  It's a tough list to play against, especially in 2500, where he has the points to field 10 las cannons.  I'll give an overview of each turn, and my thoughts.  In the end, I made a few bad mistakes, but I think I'm getting better.

Vince's Army:

5x Termies w/ 4 THSS, 1 LC
5x Termies w/ 3 THSS, 1 LC
Librarian w/ Null Zone

10x Tac Squad w/ Combi-melta, melta, Las Cannon, Razorback w/ TL Plasma, LC (combat squadded)
10x Tac Squad w/ Combi-melta, melta, Las Cannon, Razorback w/ TL Plasma, LC (combat squadded)

5x Tac Squad w/ Razorback w/ TL Plasma, LC
5x Tac Squad w/ Razorback w/ TL Plasma, LC

2x Predator w/ Autocannon, LC Sponsons
2x Speeders w/ MM, HF

My list:

2 Assault Squads w/ JP
3 Smaller Assault Squads w/ Rhinos
4 Priests, 2 w/ JP (1 was Corbulo)
Vanguard squad w/ 10 men, JP, 3 SS, 3 TH
Sternguard squad w/ Combi-plasma
Reclusiarch w/ JP
4 Attack Bikes (2 squadrons)
... Think that's it

It was Capture and Control, Pitched Battle.  He won the roll to go first, and deployed everything, kinda in a big gunline formation.  He decided to outflank Khan's Raider, and a Razorback squad w/ 2 meltas.  I in turn decided to try the 'hold everything in reserve' route, since I hadn't ever tried it before with this specific army.  That many Las Cannons were pretty scary to my rhinos anyways, and I lacked the ability to care about his firing most of his army at a couple drop troop squads in a turn, since my FNP was going to be in effect when I finally did drop in, and he had hardly any anti-marine fire, except from the razors, who were going to be the targets of my drop-melta fire when I came in.

The plan was simple:  blitz him, and use my guys to tear his army up in close combat, while trying to get a solid charge on his lone termy squad.  Khan would be coming in sometime, but I figured I'd be able to react to him once he did, since I rolled my reserves after he did.  If I could just get 2 of my assault-oriented squads in the middle of his lines, he would be hard-pressed to deal with even one squad, much less 2 or 3.

Here's how it played out:

Turn 1:  He moved around.  I had nothing.

Turn 2:  He moved around, not shooting again, lol.  His single razorback outflanked to the 'wrong' side, where he would become somewhat of a non-factor.  I rolled poorly for reserves, failing to get vanguard or one of my assault squads in (despite the re-roll reserve rolls available to Jump Troops in my army).  In the end, I got the rhino holding my Librarian, and a single assault squad, along with the 2 attack bike squads.  I jetted forward with the bikes, and the troops landed in the middle of his lines, as planned, slagging a razorback with their double-meltas.

Librarian rhino stayed in the back, behind a building.  One of my bike squads kept to my right edge (close to my objective) so that if Khan outflanked and decided he wanted to stomp my attack bikes with the termies (as it might seem rational to do, since it would be out of my charge range from anywhere on the table, including reserves), my sternguard could come on the table and plasma that squad to near-death.  Besides, if he didn't find a way to remove those bikes, they'd be a huge threat to his raider next turn.  The trap was set.  Would he fall for it?

Turn 3:  He shuffled things around, got the speeders able to flame my assault squad that was in his zone, and positioned las cannons to shoot up my attack bikes.  No Khan this turn, so he didn't have a chance to fall for it.  Sad panda for me, since I really wanted to know where he would be.  Too many points that I have no idea where they are, it drives me crazy when I don't know where all my opponent's forces are.  His shooting was alright, killing 3 guys from my assault squad (FNP for the win, lol) and 3 of my 4 attack bikes. 

My turn I got both my other drop squads and a single squad of dudes (sternguard w/ Corbulo and another squad are still in reserve), and dropped the Vanguard within dual-charge range of a predator and razorback.  My other (newer) assault squad (who had the chaplain!) shot up the side armor of his other predator.  I deepstruck them so that if I failed to kill his raider, he would have to pick between the chaplain squad, or the vanguard squad to charge with his termies, but close enough to be counter-assaulted by one of my other ones.  My 'original' assault squad managed to murder a speeder this turn, jumping closer to his objective.  The vanguard assaulted and killed both tanks, and my 2 melta shots at the land raider failed to do anything of note (killed a melta gun maybe?).  Sad day :(

Turn 4:  Khan finally showed up, but he's in a quandry:  go for my objective, where he'll likely just be melta'd out, plasma'd by Sternguard, then charged by librarian and Co. OR defend his own objective where I'm about to overrun him.  It's a tough choice, but in the end he basically conceeded the ability to take or contest my objective bar a turn 6 or 7, and entered near to his own objective.  The crusader shot up my 'original' assault squad pretty good, killing all but the priest and PF Sergeant.  The 'original' termies got out and assaulted my vanguard, while the rest of his army shot at and destroyed my rhino with ONLY librarian inside, pinning him somehow, haha.  Useless fellow!  He won combat against my Vanguard, who killed one terminator, lost 6, and ran away like little girls.  3 hammers managed to survive, though.

My 2 rhinos come in from reserve, and zoom 18" up and pop smoke.  If it goes to turn 6, I'll be able to contest his objective, no question.  I decide to go crazy, and assault the terminators, along with 2 combat squads around them, along with the librarian that I would soon pop out of his land raider.  Like I said, shooting went alright, and I managed to pop his raider with stray melta fire, and assault the naked librarian he had left inside it.  My 2 remaining assault troops jumped up to the combat squad holding his objective, needing a 4 to get into combat in difficult terrain.  The rolled a 3 and 1.  Dangit! 

The huge assault with the chaplain was a big mistake on my part.  I rolled really awfully (far worse than should ever happen with a Chaplain's rerolls) but aside from that, the fact that I multi-assaulted so many models, meant I couldn't cause a high volume of wounds on the termies.  In the end, I lost 4 marines, and he lost the librarian, who the fist smushed.  He lost NOTHING else.  9 WS5 re-rollable S5 power weapon attacks between the chaplain and priest?  Zero wounds.  Just very sad, but I think he might have been hurt a little more by my marines doing more than 3 wounds to them.  Force termies to roll enough dice, and they disappear.  I was fearless cuz of the chaplain, so I at least tied up a ton of squads for his turn.

Turn 5:  He shoots at and kills my poor remaining 'original' assault squad, and wins combat by more, but somehow my chaplain stays alive.  Nothing else really happens.  At this point, he has a squad questionably close to his own objective (we weren't sure if it was within 3", but didn't bother to find out, since it didn't matter in a friendly game) and I easily controlled my own. 

The game ends, and it's either a draw, or a win for me.  Like I said, it didn't really matter.  I just wanted experience against an army like this, and got it.  Here's what I learned (and in some cases simply affirmed):

-FNP really is king for Blood Angels.  I'm not sure why everyone wants to run an AV13 army when FNP is so much... better.  Assault squads can actually operate independantly, and not get shot to hell, in certain situations (like this one!)

- TH/SS termies require a HIGH volume of attacks against them to make them go away.  With a regular assault squad, never multi-assault termies AND another unit (unless it's a squishy librarian, who your fist can easily take care of, heh heh).  That was my biggest mistake in this game, I think.  Not sure how it would have changed the game, but it really really might have.

-Against outflanking opponents, lots of times it's wise to simply put your objective in the middle.  I think the best place is to put it closish to a table edge, but not close enough for them to zoom in on turn 5 and contest from reserves.  I put my objective too close, and had Khan stayed in until turn 5, I'd have been screwed.

- Vanguard might just be an overall fail unit.  I'm not ENTIRELY sure of this yet, but I think it might be true.  The fact that you can't give them FNP/FC the turn you deepstrike (unless you also deepstrike another assault squad dangerously close to them) hurts them quite a bit.  They're far too squishy for them not to want to benefit from FNP (obviously, lol).  The other thought is that even in a perfect deepstrike, they only ended up killing 200 points of vehicles (total of 240 points they killed, including the termie).  That's just not enough output for 450 points.  Here's what I could do with the 450 points I'm right now 'wasting' with the Vanguard:

-Add 5 dudes to 2 different rhino-borne squads (total of 10 guys, 2 extra melta)
- Add my Honor Guard w/ Rhino, 4 LC's, Banner, 4 Meltas

That's 6 extra melta, an extra priest, 5 more total bodies, and another rhino.

I could play around with it a little more, maybe dropping a priest, adding a chaplain to go with my other assault squad or something, I dunno.  I guess we'll see what I end up wanting to do. 

Vince, after the game, suggested that I should have combat-squadded the Vanguard, so that they could have killed more vehicles.  I think this idea has merit, and in the future I might just do that against tank-heavy armies like his with no inquisitor.  Yet another mistake in this game.  I'm getting there, though.  Understanding my weaknesses is helping me be able to anticipate problems, and be able to react accordingly.  I'm very happy with my progress so far, the main problem being my 'quandry' between vanguard or making multiple other units strong.

What do you think about my game?  What do you think about Vanguard, as a whole?  My list overall?  I'll be messing with the list quite a bit these next few days, trying to discover the truth.  Thursday I'll hopefully play again, at least once.


Chumbalaya said...

Vanguard are much more useful in an all DS list. They're great for BA thanks to DoA, but you're paying way too much for them. 5 with a PF, LC and maybe melta bombs works just fine. You don't need to murder everything on the charge, just get into HtH to block LoS and stop shooting. Or, go nuts and give them all SS for your own flying anvil.

Sounds like a good game. I'm not stoked about Khan and outflanking or the super VG unit though.

Zac Pauga said...

So kyle curb stomped me with a blood angel list yesterday that is pretty interesting. it was something like this.

Grey knight Grand master w/ psychic hood.
4x Grey Knight terminator retinue


Brother captain w/ 4x grey knight terminators.

Sanguinary Priest

8x Assault marines w/ melta gun and infernus pistol. Land raider Crusader

8x Assault marines w/ melta gun and infernus pistol. Land raider Crusader

7x assault marines w/ melta gun, infernus pistol, power weapon

7x Assault marines w/ melta gun, infernus pistol, power weapon.

Storm Raven w/ multi-melta and lascannon

Storm Raven w/ multi-melta and lascannon

Like I said he beat me worse than I have ever been beaten in 40k before. Furious Charge FnP grey knights are unbelievable and the board wide psychic hood shut me down as well. The ridiculous thing is that the whole unit costs 80 points more than Mephiston but is better in every way except initiative. Grey knights are also an answer to hive tyrants and Th/SS termies, and Storm ravens rock as well.

I'm going to make a variant list without the land raiders because I really just don't like land raiders at ard boys, I'll be putting more priests in to get coverage over the assault marines as well as the terminators.

Michael said...

Chumby has it spot on with the Vanguard. Cut it in half, with one fist, some SS, and melta bombs and you are good to go. A full ten man squad may work after combat squadding, but you only need 5 of them to disrupt the enemy pretty well.

And that Grey Knight list looks ridiculous. I wonder if they benefit from the FC, FNP though. I'll have to check the dex . . .

Zac Pauga said...

The exact codex wording is:

Blood Chalice: All friendly units within 6" are subject to the furious charge and feel no pain universal special rules.

Michael said...

I read that not too long ago too.

What a mess that would be to have FC FNP GKT. If they could only take storm shields my life would be complete.

That is a squad worth trying out though, just for kicks and giggles.