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Since the new Codex came out, the named characters has become so popular that many people hardly ever go to battle without at least one of them.
With many of the characters however you have to sacrifice your Combat Tactics for some other special rules. This doesn't seem to bother most people though.
What I would like to know, is how many people prefer Combat Tactics over the Chapter Tactics that these characters bring to the party. And If this loss of Combat Tactics might stop you from taking them.
(The obvious exception is obviously Marneus Calgar, whose Chapter Tactics is basically Super Combat Tactics.
I like the idea that marines can voluntarily fall back and can see it's uses. But with Khan the flank march is so much more fun. It saves alot of time too - as I do not deploy anything at the start of the game. The hit and run ability seems natural for his bike squad too, since they wouldn't really drive up and stop - they would just charge through then come around for another run.
The other abilities seem better than combat tactics too. Shrikes infilitrate and scout lets you attack first turn. The others such as +1A for nearby soilders or Sternguard as scoring units sound good too.
Bottom line is I prefer chapter tactics.
I can definitely understand the lure of the named characters, but I'm sticking with the generic captain and chaplain. First of all for fluff reasons (DIY chapter) but I would think long and hard before I'd change combat tactics for anything else. The ability to break away from combat only to either rapid fire/whatever or charge again is invaluable to me. The sight of my 5 man bike squad dual-flaming a squad, charging, killing a few dudes and in my opponents turn he would win combat, I disengage and repeat. Awesome.