Chaos 4th Edition Unit Tactica
As the new codex has just recently been released there seem to be a lot of ideas flying around the forums as to the effectiveness of certain units combinations / unit builds. I figured that it was about time that someone went to the trouble of writing a tactica to help those who are a little bit behind on the new codex or maybe just less tactically enlightened than some of our brethren. Whether you are new to the forces of the ruinous powers or a veteran of hundreds of battles I hope that one and all are able to come away with something new from this article.
Please note that this tactica is simply meant to give a general overview of each unit choice and a few examples of good setups for that unit. I am sure that everyone will have varying opinions on squad size and / or gear, the examples listed are those that myself and variuos others have found to be effective.
After writing the initial tactica I realized that there were some options that are available for most squads in general that I just did not mention. I decided to go back and write a section that cover each of these options, giving the rundown on them.
Plasma Pistol: Now one would think that since plasma guns are so popular that plasma pistols would be great as well. Unfortunately this is not the case ( with a few very specific exceptions) In most cases the plasma pistol can only be taken on a unit champion, a champion which often times has a power fist. The vast majority of players, myself included, are not prepared to take the chance of losing our expensive champion to a gets hot roll. In the case of characters, no one likes losing a wound on often times the most expensive single model in their army. The one place where plasma pistols may find a place is with Berzerker squads where they are the only special weapon option for the normal marines.
Combi-weapon: In the old dex these were generally not used outside of terminators but they have come to be an interesting option in the new dex. The two main uses that I see for them now are first of all for terminators (obviously) and second of all for use on normal marine squads that are running below the 10 man squad size. Here they help to preserve the number of special weapons in the squad while cutting back on points.
Melta Bombs: In general these things are not worth the points unless taken as filler on independent characters. Almost every squad that these might have been useful on already has weapons capable of dealing with armor (meltas, power fist, krak grenades, plasma). The only squads that I could see these being useful on are assault oriented noise marines and perhaps Berzerkers in the absence of a unit powerfist.
Personal Icon: The usefulness of these totally depends on your armies overall composition. If you have deep striking termis / oblits(who would?) / raptors and / or lesser daemons then they can be a worthwhile investment on your HQs and cult marine squads. Otherwise they are useless.
Abaddon the Despoiler: Overrall it can be said that Abaddon is quite the monster in the new dex due in large part to the fact that he counts as having a daemon weapon that doubles his strength. The downsides seem to outweigh the upsides however. Abaddon is slow moving and he costs more than a 10 man marine squad with all of the fixins. In order to get him into action you either have to teleport him, which becomes troublesome due to the fact that he may come onto the board before or after any termis you intend as an escort, or you can stick him in a landraider which in anything less than say 3k points is like handing your opponent free VPs.
Fabius Bile: Now Fabius has his upsides and his down sides just like Abaddon. On the upside he has a nice number of attacks at decent strength, feel no pain, and he allows you to take enhanced warriors. On the downside he is slow and none of his attacks ignore armor. The movement issue can be solved by grabbing him an empty seat in a rhino but the fact that he doesn’t have any armor ignoring attacks should prove to be a deterrent to all but his die hard fans and those that want to use him in fun / fluffy games.
Huron Blackheart: Once again we come into this with the good and the bad. Huron has some good things going for him in this version of the dex though he used to be better if I remember correctly (2nd edition). Huron has a heavy flamer and both a powerfist and a power weapon, allowing you to choose how you would like to use his attacks, he can use the warptime ability and comes with the invulnerable save that so many special characters lack. His only real downside is the recurring theme of being slow though once again this can be solved with the use of an empty rhino seat. All in all he is one of the best Special characters in this edition of the dex.
Typhus: On the upside Typhus a weapon that counts as both a daemon weapon and a force weapon as well as auto passing his psychic tests, being able to use his force weapon no matter what, and being equipped with blight grenades. The downside is that he runs into the same mobility issues as Abaddon. He can deepstrike in alone or he can go in a landraider though both options are somewhat iffy.
Kharn the Betrayer: Overall kharn is one of the better special characters in the dex. He has not changed all that much but the changes that were made were for the better. He retains his high weapon skill and number of attacks, his “betrayer” ability, as well as his immunities to psychic powers and force weapons. He gained a slight boost in the form of furious charge and stayed around the same price he was in the old dex. Point for point the best CC Special character in the dex.
Ahirman: This guys has finally become the psychic monster that he was meant to be from the beginning. Now that he can make up to three psychic tests a turn and use multiple shooting powers a turn he has the equivalent psychic potential of Eldrad Ulthran, though it comes with the same mobility problem though depending on the powers that you use this may not be an issue. Once again the option of sequestering him away inside a rhino comes up but that will only hinder his psychic potential. The mobility issue coupled with his hefty point cost lead me to believe that only die hard 1k sons players will field him with any kind of frequency.
Lucius the Eternal: Lucius is another character that has changed for the better in the new dex. This is due to a combination of different factors: He now has a firm WS score, has an invulnerable save, has the fueled by pain ability, and is equipped with the lash of torment (blight grenades) and a doom siren. Overall I would say that for pure troop killing potential he rivals kharn. The only thing I don’t quite understand is why they would give him an ability that lowers the amount of incoming attacks along with an ability that benefits from attacks made against the character. Once again his major drawback is mobility though he is my personal favorite of the special characters.
Daemon Princes: At last we have a separate entry for these monstrous beasts and rightly so. The daemon prince has an overall impressive stat line along with immunity to instant death. It seems that wings are a must have for these guys as they have no other way of getting into combat quickly. There are many different variation s of this guy wandering around out on the forums, below I am going to list just a few with a couple of notes no how to use each.
DP w/ MoK + Wings
Cheap and simple, this thing puts out a decent number of attacks and is mobile enough.
DP w/ wings + warptime
Slightly more expensive than the above prince but with the ability to make sure that almost every attack counts.
DP w/ MoS + wings + Lash
This is a really popular build mainly due to the fact that it can let you get off a first turn charge with this guy.
DP w/ MoT + wings + warp time + wind of chaos
This guys is the most expensive of the builds that I have listed but rightly so. He is more resilient due to his increased invulnerable save and has amazing killing potential due to the fact that warp time not only lets you reroll the dice for close combat but for wind of chaos as well.
Chaos Lord: Here we have the all rounder of the chaos HQ choices and imo the often overlooked MVP of this portion of the FoC. With the right combinations of marks and weapons + movement modifiers this guys is a veritable killing machine, capable of ripping up entire squads all on his own. He has the ability to dish out many more attacks than the daemon prince and though he is a little bit more squishy statwise he does benefit from IC status which is something that the DP cannot claim. Here are a few setups with some short notes describing each.
Lord w/ Daemon weapon + bike
This guys is the all purpose HQ. One of the major drawbacks of the chaos lord in this edition is the fact that it is hard to upgrade any of his stats, mainly his low strength. This is why the unmarked lord is so appealing especially when coupled with the extra toughness and movement given to him by the bike. My favorite setup…
Lord w/ MoS + Daemon weapon + steed
This is another effective choice for a chaos lord though it does have different strengths from the build listed above. This setup is perfect for taking out multi wound HQs and monstrous creatures. The steed is perfect for getting him to where he needs to be and the extra attack certainly doesn’t hurt. His high initiative means that he will strike before all but the fastest enemy units, use him wisely and he should not fail you.
Lord w/ MoT + Daemon weapon + flight/steed
This guy is as close as we can get to the old kai flier lord that seemed so prevalent in the old dex. He is a good bit more expensive than he used to be but he makes up for it with his impressive invulnerable save and extra attacks in CC.
Lord w/ MoK + Daemon weapon + flight
This build is for all of you that like taking chances. With the bloodfeeder he is much more likely to wound himself but he gets a lot more attacks. I guess it is really up to you though I think that an 11/36 chance of wounding yourself and doing nothing every turn is a little too high.
Chaos sorcerer: Finally GW has brought us the psykers that we should have had all along. These guys are great at what they do and a good value for the points. Their stats are slightly lower than those of the Chaos lord though they do come stock with a force weapon which more than makes up for it imo. Below I will detail a few common builds.
Sorcerer w/ MoS + flight + Lash of Submission
Here we have the most common HQ choice that chaos has ever had, at least until the FAQ comes out. The lash has so many combinations with other units that it is hard to list them all. A few of the best are grouping units together for battle cannon / demolisher cannon / plasma cannon shots, drawing units towards your assault troops, pushing units away from your ranged troops, moving enemy units out of LoS of your units, pulling units out of cover. The possibilities are endless and they beg the question of what in the warp was GW thinking when they made this power?
Sorcerer w/ MoT + steed + warp time + wind of chaos
This is by far the most expensive HQ choice that I have detailed in this tactica and for fair reason. This guy will kill any type of enemies in droves with the combination of warp time and wind of chaos coupled with his already potent CC abilities. He is the scalpel where the similarly tooled daemon prince is the hammer. Where as the daemon prince can charge just about anything and come out grinning this guy you should be a little more careful with and use his IC status to strike where and when he will be most effective.
Greater Daemon: The new generic greater daemon is actually quite amazing for its point cost. Its stats are quite impressive and now due to the fact that you no longer have to declare a daemon vessel it becomes easier to get it to where you need it most. Its only drawback is its slow movement but this is not such a problem since it is summoned. If this is any indication of what the god specific greater daemons will be like then I think good things are on the way!
I have to say that I am extremely happy overall with our elites section. I believe that having oblits in the elites section in the last dex was a huge mistake. It made chaos much more cheesey than it was ever intended to be. Thankfully they have been changed over to heavy support and traded out for the dreadnought.
Chosen CSM: Alas this is what our veteran skills have come to, a single army list entry with a single veteran skill and no choices about which one it is. At least it is arguably the best one of all. The chosen have really started to take on the role of forward firebase since the release of the dex. With so many options literally anything is possible though some combinations are far more effective than others. When infiltrating the chosen it is important to remember that they are relatively slow moving, this is why it is important to give them weapons with decent range, meltas and flamers generally will not work as well as plasma or represent as big a threat. They do have the option of taking a rhino instead of using their infiltrate skill though in general unless tooling out a CC squad it would be much more prudent to use havocs for their reduced cost. Here are a few common setups.
8x chosen, 4x plasma, Icon of (your choice)
This squad will bring the heat so fast and hard to the enemy that they will barely know what hit them. In my estimation it is important to keep these guys cheap as more than a few will likely burn themselves out rapid firing and the more expensive they are, the more it hurts losing one.
8x chosen, 3x plasma, AC w/ fist, Icon of (your choice)
This squad is very similar to the above but packs a bit more of the CC punch with the powerfist to help in case they find themselves in CC trouble. In general I do not run this setup as I think that it is a bad idea to split their purpose between CC and ranged nastiness. As with all CSM units it is important to give each squad a role.
8x chosen, 1x melta gun, 4x pairs of lightning claws, IoS + Rhino w/ combi melta
This squad is just an example of the uber CC units that are possible to create using the chosen entry. It is a good bit more expensive than a normal marine squad though it will tend to be much more lethal when it hits CC.
Terminators: I am pretty sure that everyone that had been a fan of the terminator for fluff reasons in the previous edition and was disappointed by their performance is smiling right now. The new termis are simply amazing due to a number of changes. First of all they have had a decent point cost reduction and secondly their weapon selections have never been better. Most of you know that in terms of weapon selection I am hreferring to the the combi plasma. Never before have we been able to put this devastating weapon in the hands of something as survivable as a terminator. The fact that it can only be fired once in a game is not such a drawback when the whole squad can be armed with them. The other weapon that is currently becoming popular is the heavy flamer. What was once never even considered to be an option by most has become an almost compulsory upgrade due to its almost insignificant point cost. The reaper autocannon on the other hand will now become what the heavy flamer used to be due to the fact that you can give 5 termis combi plasma for the cost of a single reaper. As far as icons go on these squads the most useful in my estimation is the IoK due to the fact that the termis are carrying power weapons and due to their heavy armor do not benefit as much from the IoS. In regards to the other marks, I do not think that they are nearly as effective when their cost is figured into the equation, termis work best on the cheap! Below are a few unit setups with short descriptions.
4x termis, 4x combi plasma
Cheap and effective, also known as the Karmoon special. These guys can either hitch a ride in a landraider or deep strike where they will be most effective. They are quite capable of destroying an entire MEQ squad in a single turn.
5x termis, 4x combi plas, 1x heavy flamer + chain fist
More expensive than the previous setup but a little more versatile with the extra body and inclusion of the heavy flamer and chain fist.
5x termis, IoK, 1x pair of LCs, 3x combi meltas, 1x heavy flamer + chain fist
Even more expensive than the other two units but they will pack a whole lot more heat in CC. These are my personal favorites for deep striking next to enemy armor /transports. If the meltas don’t work to pop the armor then the chain fist will. Position them carefully, use the tank/transport you intend to pop to block LoS.
Posessed: Many of us had high hopes for the possessed in this version of the dex but it seems like it was all in vain. One has to wonder what GW was doing when they created this unit. They are still more expensive per marine than any of the cult marines and a the fact that rhinos are now necessities begs the question of why 2 of the 6 powers they could potentially have affect their movement. These will only be used by friendly gamers who either like the models or care more about the fluff than the effectiveness.
Dreadnoughts: Overall the dreadnought became much more dangerous for us to use in the new dex largely due to the fact that when it fire frenzies it now just shoots at the nearest units, friend or foe. Below I will list some common setups.
Dread w/ extra DCCW + Heavy flamer
The ultimate close combat dready. If he decides to fire frenzy the worst you are going to get is some bolter shots to the rear so he is safe enough to run along side most of your other units.
Dread w/ plasma cannon + ML
This dread is a little harder to use than the other but it can be very rewarding if used properly. He works best when used in conjunction with lash of submission due to the fact that he can produce two templates normally and four when he fire frenzies. It is usually best to position him all by his lonesome on a flank. He is one of those units where either the enemy deals with him early or he pays for not dealing with him later. If the enemy does decide to take him out it’s not that big a deal because he really didn’t cost that much.
Chaos Space Marines: Here we come to the crème de la crème, our basic trooper. This guy has easily become the single best basic troop in the game. The main reason for this is that we have gained what most are calling “Uber Grit”. Basically every marine now comes with a bolter, bolt pistol, and a close combat weapon. It used to be that we had to make a choice between having our marines geared for CC or geared for range but now we get the best of both worlds. We can rapid fire bolters and still get our +1A in CC. Due to the loss of veteran skills in the new dex it has now become almost necessity to take rhinos for these squads as otherwise they will be hard pressed to get to where they are going. In terms of icons the IoCG seems to be the most cost effective though I have used the IoS as well to get shots in before our loyalist brethren. The other icons are too expensive to see much use imo. Below you will find some common builds with some short notes on each.
10x marines, IoCG, 2x melta, AC w/ power fist + Rhino
This is your basic all around assault unit. They roll forward in their coffin and pop tanks with the melta on their way in to CC.
10x marine, IoCG, 2x plasma, AC w/ power fist + Rhino
This option is very similar to the one listed above but is intended for more mid ranged fire support.
8x marines, IoCG, 1x melta, AC w/ power fist, combi melta + Rhino
This unit is for those of you who miss the 8 man squads from the last edition of the dex. It loses just a little bit of AT power in exchange for a cheaper squad overall. I recommend this setup for lower point games and also for use if you absolutely need to cut points for something else.
Rhino: I figured I would spend a short time talking about the chaos rhino and the serious face lift that it has gotten in the new dex. Not only was the price dropped by the cost of a marine but it now comes standard with smoke launchers and a search light. It also now has the option of taking a pintle mounted combi plasma which is looking like quite an interesting option to me. Overall it is an amazing improvement from the last dex.
Plague Marines: When looking at the special rules and weapon options for plague marines one can’t help but get that “wow” feeling. They are by far the most survivable power armoured marines in the game though it comes at a pretty high point cost. As a warning I just want to say that it can be easy to get “plague marine fever” but that an army composed entirely of cult marines will inherently have trouble dishing out enough volume of fire to deal with swarms, try not to go crazy with them. Due to the feel no pain special rule plague marines are much better suited for handling plasma than their normal CSM brethren, below is the most common loadout.
7x plague marines, 2x plasma, PC w/ Fist + Rhino
For roughly the same cost as a 10 man marine squad you get 3 less bodies though each is much more survivable. For a little added fun try out a combi plasma on the PC.
Noise Marines: These are the cheapest of all the cult marines although this changes as soon as you add the sonic weaponry. The sonic blaster is a decent upgrade for the bolter though I think it is a little overcosted, 3 pts would have been more appropriate imo. The Doom siren is simply amazing and unfortunately the blastmaster has been made so expensive that it will see little to no competitive action. Below are a few common setups.
6x noise marines, 6x sonic blasters
This squad generally works best in lower point games where the range of the sonic blaster can make up for the squads lack of mobility. It pumps out enough shots at range to give just about anything cause to hesitate.
6x noise marines, 5x sonic blasters, AC w/ power weapon, doom siren + Rhino
This squad costs a good deal more than the generic squad listed above but packs much more of a punch at close range due to the AC and has much higher mobility due to the rhino.
Khorne Berzerkers: Most people were simply outraged when they heard that zerkers were going to lose bloodrage but I simply cannot understand why… They had the potential to fleet but with the drawback of losing control of the entire squad. IMO they seem much more true to fluff now than they did before. Zerkers are now killing machines with their increased WS, A, and furious charge. They are by far the most effective assault troops that we can field. My preference for the skull champion is to give him a power weapon to take advantage of the increased initiative from furious charge. Below is a common setup
8x zerkers, Skull champ w/ power weapon +Rhino
Thousand sons: In this version of the dex the 1k sons have traded their extra wound for a shiny new invulnerable save. It is hard to say which is better but overall their survivability has not changed too much. What really has changed is the damage that they dish out in the form of AP3 bolters. Since they still come with slow and purposeful the 1k sons can always fire their bolters out to maximum range making them a threat to just about anything. The sorcerer squad leader accounts for much of the total cost of these squads but it is not so bad when you consider that he helps with their S&P rolls and that he comes stock with a force weapon. Below is a standard loadout.
8x 1k sons(incl. Sorc.), doombolt / bolt of change + Rhino
This squad is pretty straightforward. The rhino takes them to where they can be most effective and then they unload AP3 hell on the enemy. If you need some extra AT then take BoC it has received a pretty decent buff.
Lesser Daemons: These guys received a lot of flack early on for not being as good as their god specific counter parts but considering the new rules for daemon summoning and the fact that they do not suffer from instability I actually think that they can be quite effective. They can popout anywhere that you have an icon on the turn they become available, instant assault troops at a decent price…
Chaos Bikers: Overall chaos bikers really have not changed that much. There point cost has stayed pretty close to what it was before and their stats have not changed significantly. They have received a slight boost due to the fact that the IoN now will allow them to reach T6. There is some confusion over whether or not the IoT will allow them to reach a 2+ invulnerable save when they turbo boost. I am with the camp that believes this to be true for two reasons: 1. they already allowed something similar with the IoN stacking with the increased toughness gained from the bike and 2. the codex specifically mentions that a 2+ invulnerable save is the best invulnerable save possible with the IoT. Despite the few buffs they have received, bikes seem to be outclassed in general by raptors due to the fact that they are so much cheaper. Below are a couple of simple setups.
3x bikers, 2x meltaguns
This is simply a suicide tank hunting squad. They should turbo boost first turn, take out a tank on the second turn and then if they do not get roasted they can serve to tie up an enemy unit for a turn or so.
6x bikers, IoS, 2x meltas, AC w/ Power weapon
This is your all purpose bike squad. The icon comes down to personal preference, if you want them to have T6 then go for the IoN. Personally I like the IoS because you want them to get in as many hits as possible before getting hit back.
Raptors: Holy flying evil Batman! Raptors that are even cheaper than loyalist assault marines! Raptors have certainly made a comeback in the dex and for good reason, they are now quite reasonably priced and retain most of their weapon options. As far as icons are concerned the IoK and the IoS seem to be the most common as they help to augment the raptors combat skills. Below are a few typical setups.
8x raptors, IoS/IoK, 2x melta, AC w/ lightning claws
Pretty straightforward squad here. With the IoS they will strike before their loyalist brethren and with the IoK they will dish out a metric ton of attacks on the charge and can always pop tanks with the meltas if need be. The choice of lightning claws over the powerfist will prove to be a common one on raptors imo due to the fact that they are likely to draw a lot of heat on the way into combat and it is important to get the ACs attacks in before the squad is wiped out.
Chaos Spawn: In my opinion this is probably the single worst entry in the codex. It has no save, has very unpredictable movement speed and number of attacks, and you have absolutely no control over where it goes. I might have taken them at half the points cost as filler… It is such a shame because the models are quite nice.
Chaos Havocs: altogether havocs have stayed much the same as they were in the old dex. Now that we can no longer give them tank hunting I have a feeling that the missile launcher will see more use on these guys. Unfortunately in the mechanized environment created by the new dex havocs will tend to lose out in favor of the armoured choices to help draw fire away from our rhinos. Below are a couple common setups.
6x havocs, 3x missile launchers
An all purpose squad, capable of popping armor or taking care of swarms. They lose some effectiveness against MEQs but it for the most part they will do well.
8x havocs, IoCG, 4x flamers, AC w/ powerfist, combi flamer + Rhino w/ combi flamer
This is an idea that has been kicked around on the forum recently and it certainly seems like an interesting one. Watch your opponents face when you tell him you are going to be firing 6 flamers at one of his squads.
Obliterators: Obliterators received the nerfing that we all knew was coming, their toughness was reduced, their weapon selection changed, and their points cost increased. They are still usable as they are but will usually end up being shelved in favor of armored choices just like the havocs.
Chaos Predator: The changes to the predator were very interesting, some builds got cheaper and some build became much more expensive. Unfortunately daemonic possession is not really an option on these things any more due to the decrease in BS. More often than not you need your predators to hit what they are shooting at as they are on of our few reliable ranged AT platforms. Below are some common setups.
Predator w/ AC + LC Sponsons
This is the cheap and easy AT predator. The twin linked lascannon turret has become way to expensive to see much use in the new dex. For it’s points this baby will give you the best amount of AT fire available.
Predator w/ AC + HB Sponsons + Havoc Launcher
Here we have the “dakka” predator. Capable of spewing out enough hot lead to choke a horse. This thing is usually seen running beside two of its AT brethren in larger sized games, the enemy should be so focused on killing the AT predators that this should receive little to no attention.
Chaos Vindicator: a shiny new toy for us chaos generals and one that has already received a good bit of attention. It is just as survivable as a predator but the thing that makes it even more of a pain to the enemy is that it can take advantage of the benefits of daemonic possession without having to worry about the drawbacks. Below is the common configuration.
Vindicator w/ daemonic possession
Chaos Defiler: Remember how in the old dex you rarely ever used the reaper autocannon and the twin linked heavy flamer? Well now we have options that let us chuck them in favor of more CC attacks and now that the defilers is armed with DCCW and gets fleet of foot it has become a true CC machine, capable of 6 S10 attacks on the charge. The only downside is that to fleet you have to forego using that juicy battle cannon shot. I think we will see people slowly advancing it firing the battle cannon and then using fleet on the turn that they want it to hit CC. Common setup is below.
Defiler w/ 2 extra DCCW
Chaos Landraider: Here is another entry that has received a little bit of much needed attention in the new dex. I see it becoming quite popular in the near future due to the decrease in its point cost and the fact that it can now take daemonic possession without losing its ability to transport troops. It will be affected by the decrease in BS but not as much as other vehicles due to the fact that its weapons are all twin linked. Terminators in Landraiders have now become much more feasible. Below is the most common setup.
Landraider w/ Daemonic possession
General Rules for the Chaos General
Now that we have taken a good long look at the different unit options available to us it is time for a few general guidelines for how some of these units can be put to best use. This is generally for the newer chaos players who have not as of yet learned some of the basic dos and don’ts of the army.
Overall army composition is a very tough thing to teach though I will try my best to get some of you on the right track.
Never mix Special / heavy weapons: The bottom line is that it is not a good idea. Say for example you have a heavy bolter and a flamer on the same squad. One of the weapons needs to stay still to fire and has a decent range, the other weapon needs to get up close and personal and can fire on the move. No matter what one of the weapons will not be working to its full potential.
Chaos units cannot afford to be “versatile”, each unit works best when it is tailored to a specific role.
How are they getting there?: This hrefers to how marines are going to get to where they need to be. If you have a squad tooled out for assault but have them footslogging up the board, your opponent will likely just rip them apart from afar. Unfortunately since infiltrate is now limited to chosen we now have to turn to our only other option for getting our marines close to the enemy, the rhino. The only exception to this rule is the static gun line army that forces the opponent to come to them. These armies can be fairly decent yet will run into some trouble when going up against armies that are inherently shootier than they are (Tau / elder / IG).
Armor, lots or none at all: This is a very important rule that often gets overlooked by those new to the hobby or army.
Let’s say that you take a 1.5k points army with two rhinos as your only pieces of armor. Now your opponent has the option of either firing his shiny lascannons at the closest footslogging troops or at those rolling coffins that we call rhino which will enable him to shoot up your squads since you now have to footslog what was in them… tough choice(sarcastic voice)…
Now let’s say that we have the exact same scenario but you have 0 pieces of armor in your list (NOTE: This does require tailoring your list to function well without rhinos and other armor). Now instead of firing at the tanks he expected to see with his expensive anti tank weaponry he is stuck firing at “Joe CSM”. Sure he may kill a few of your guys but in general those weapons of his are wasted points.
Once again we find ourselves in the same scenario except that this time you have 3 rhinos and 3 predators in your list. Sure your opponents AT weapons have things to shoot at now but you are forcing him to decide which things he needs to shoot at first. Does he shoot at the rhinos full of berzerkers and CSM or does he shoot at the predators which may destroy his tanks if he doesn’t? Sort of a “Spawned if you do, spawned if you don’t” situation…
You have tanks? Well so does your opponent!: This comes down to one thing, do you have enough anti tank firepower in your list? The amount needed will vary according to the point limit being played. Generally I go by the rule that you need at least 2 units capable of anti tank fire for every thousand points in your list.
For example a 1k points list could have an oblits and raptors with meltaguns.
A 2k points list could have 2 AT Predators and 2 units in rhinos with meltas.
These are really the high points of army composition. It is possible to get more specific but not without looking at individual lists. If you need a little bit more help feel free to post a list in the army list forum and some of our experts will try and help out as best we can!
I sincerely hope that my thoughts on the new dex have helped some of you!