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Thread: SM Bike Tactics

  1. #1
    Senior Member darby5's Avatar
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    SM Bike Tactics

    I tried to post this in the tactics area but I am not authorized!?

    Any comments or tips I missed?

    Geared to all bikers, may help all who use any bikes...

    PAPER, ROCK, SCISSORS,
    With a fast army you can choose where, when, & with whom the battles take place. Shoot the assaulters, charge the shooters, and otherwise try to negate the enemies advantages.

    ADVANTAGES
    Relentless allows the bikes to shoot as if they had not moved and still charge, even when they shoot rapid fire. 5th edition no longer specifies the weapon be "mounted on a bike". Good use of this skill is with the Master of the Forge's conversion beamer and the librarian's vortex power.

    TRICKS
    Destroying transports will also help to maintain control over when, where, & who of the battles.
    Surround transports to cover the exits. Once the vehicle is destroyed it's occupants will be killed automatically (OOPS< NO LONGER IN 5th EDITION).
    Squads can also be taken out by cutting off lines of retreat or at least deny the squad the chance to regroup by herding them off the board.

    DISADVANTAGES
    Unfortunately bikes must stay on ground level. This is a huge problem in city fights, where jump infantry will charge then retreat to various buildings and laugh. Don't forget you can attack the building. Blow up buildings to get pesky snipers or objectives on elevated floors. You have to weigh the advantage of simply shooting the unit or shooting the building and attacking the squad next turn. Having squads around to attack the target in the same turn after destroying the building can help keep them from getting the drop on you.
    Bikes cannot run. Bikes must take dangerous terrain tests instead of difficult. Try to use your extra move to go around terrain if possible.

    STAYIN' ALIVE
    A biker army will always be outnumbered so it is important to preserve each man. Try to deny enemy squads any targets by staying out of fire lanes and out of LOS.
    When you do end up in a enemy squad's sights, you can exploit it be flooding it with targets since they get to shoot anyway but will have to pick a single unit to target.
    Turbo bikes to provide cover to other squads. This gives them both a cover save. Remember this is a cover save and no longer an invulnerable save. This shouldn't matter too much since most weapons that ignore cover do not typically have a high AP.
    Even scouts who are turbo boosting get the 3+ cover save, better than their regular saves - but watch out for heavy flamers and close combat attacks that ignore armor saves.

    TROOPS
    I am in the habit of giving squad sergeants power fists since they don't get an additional attack anyway and are 'hidden' so will most likely live to use it.
    Special weapons-wise meltaguns and flamers are best. The biker is an expensive model to be killed by an overheating plasma gun. Top it off with an attack bike (heavy bolter with flamers and a multi-melta with meltaguns) and you have a force to be reckoned with.

    SCOUTS
    Scouts, on the other hand, will be mostly a shooter unit so a power weapon or nothing will probably suffice. When using scouts with grenade launchers instead of TL bolters there is nothing to stop you from giving the sergeant the grenade launcher to benefit from his higher BS..

    ATTACK BIKES
    Attack bikes are a biker army's heavy support. Multi-meltas are usually chosen over heavy bolters since there is usually already more anti-infantry simply from the twin-linked bolters. Heavy bolters do have their place though (like with the flamer bike squad).
    The best place for your attack bike is actually in a regular bike squad. This provides additional protection. Squads of all attack bikes can suffer from instant death but if you are careful (use cover from threats and take advantage of the increased range) they can do their part. Your opponent will also have to choose between shooting his unit at the large, intimidating bike squad or the small squad of attack bikes.

    ICs WITH BIKES
    Independent characters get skilled rider.

    A captain is a requirement for biker armies so your regular bike squads become troops. He can be outfitted creatively (relic blade, aux grenade launcher, Hellfire rounds in his bike's bolters) but is hard to compare to Kel'Sorro Khan. Chapter masters are not worth it because they do not allow you to:
    1. Take bike squads as troops.
    2. Take an honor guard on bikes.
    3. Relentless does not cover the orbital bombardment.

    Khan is a great boon with the tactics he provides. He is the only bike that can run and has fleet. He can insta-kill - probably by decapitating the enemy (White Scars collect heads). With him you can flank march your entire army if on bikes. The hit and run ability is great when used in the end of the enemies assault phase. Furious charge needs no explanation. Khan works best with a command squad.

    Librarians are fun. I recommend Vortex and, if attached to a squad, force dome. You don't want to fail the psychic test for Vortex but remember psychic tests are "normal leadership tests" so should benefit from a reroll if you have a company standard nearby (RAW-wise at least).

    A chaplain is good for an assault unit, like attached to the command squad. Fearless can get you in trouble when you have expensive bikers getting dragged down by no retreat/being outnumbered.

    Master of the Forge with a conversion beamer is a great combination, as mentioned previously. You can use the bike to get the distance you need and the angle for LOS. The servo-harness is good when you are running with other squads, like attached to a command squad.

    Techmarines are the only elite choice for an all bike army. The servo-harness is tempting but is not worth it on a model with only 1 wound. It is best to keep them pretty basic if you use them.

    AUXILLARY UNITS
    An all bike army can be a challange to play. Your opponents will probably have close to twice as many models (less w/ mech and more w/ horde obviously). An assault squad can keep up with the bikes and clear out the upper levels of buildings. A tactical squad will help even the odds slightly (transport highly recommended) and can tie up and distract enemies or hold objectives while your bikes are speeding around the battlefield waiting to grab objectives on turn 5+.

    Last edited by darby5; April 3rd, 2009 at 00:35. Reason: Delete

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  3. #2
    Lord Cupcake of Senteria Grey2321's Avatar
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    That sounds like good advice, but...
    1: Where does it say that ICs have the Skilled Rider USR?

    2: Kor'Sarro doesn't let out-flank tanks. He lets you outflank units with combat tactics and dedicated transports. The only tanks that you can outflank with would be Rhinos, Razorbacks, and Land Raiders taken as Ded. Transports for Terminators.

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    Senior Member darby5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grey2321 View Post
    That sounds like good advice, but...
    1: Where does it say that ICs have the Skilled Rider USR?
    Under Moving Independant Characters pg 47 of the basic rulebook.

    Quote Originally Posted by Grey2321 View Post
    2: Kor'Sarro doesn't let out-flank tanks. He lets you outflank units with combat tactics and dedicated transports. The only tanks that you can outflank with would be Rhinos, Razorbacks, and Land Raiders taken as Ded. Transports for Terminators.
    Aha. I see. Thanks. I'll have to edit that.

    Rep for your help.
    Last edited by darby5; February 2nd, 2009 at 23:55.

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    Senior Member 4theEmperor!'s Avatar
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    Where does it say that bikes must stay on the ground level? I know a bike player who routinely runs his bikes up and down buildings. They are not slowed by difficult terrain but they treat it as dangerous terrain, but not impassible terrain. They can go in but they risk taking a wound with no saves---not a nice proposition! If each level of a building counts as 3 inches, then a bike can from ground level up to the 4th floor (near as I can tell.) I just read the bikes rules and this is how I interpret what I read. Is there another place that says bikes must stay on ground level?
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    Senior Member darby5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4theEmperor! View Post
    Where does it say that bikes must stay on the ground level?
    Intact buildings are treated as transports, so Terms take up extra spaces. It doesn't say anything about bikes there (Occupying Buildings pg 79), but I know I can only put infantry in a transport (Transport Capacity pg 66).

    It is more specific under Ruins, pg 83, Moving Within Ruins. In the first paragraph on the page it lists who can go on the upper levels and bikes are not listed. Units not listed must stay on the ground level of the ruin.

    You should wait until your playing him and he tries it to tell him .

    thanks foR rEading Partner

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    Ghost of LO ForgedInTheFurnaceOfWar's Avatar
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    Well most of the time, the enemy player will have at least one model on the ground level of the Ruin. Assault him, and force the rest of the squad down, as they must counter attack. And don't bring your bikes to a city fight.

    If not, remember to take a few flamers with you to punish tightly packed roof top units, otherwise known as toast. Since you've only got to pick the floor your targeting, the angle of the flamer is ignored.

    You can't assault a unit inside a building with any unit at all. Bike's do pretty well against one or two buildings. Surround the exit points with bikes, using speed and turbo boost to make this easy. Than Pop the building with your multi-melta attack bike, you've got handy.

    I know a bike player who routinely runs his bikes up and down buildings
    Are you sure you guys are actually classifying your buildings as buildings? Both players need to agree on everything terrain related before the game starts.
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    Senior Member 4theEmperor!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ForgedInTheFurnaceOfWar View Post
    Are you sure you guys are actually classifying your buildings as buildings? Both players need to agree on everything terrain related before the game starts.
    Actually I was being imprecise in my use of language. The "buildings" I was referring to are actually "ruins." I will refresh my memory on the rules for ruins...! Thanks for the info guys!

    By the way, I do like this bike tactica!
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    Will eat your soul. Sknight's Avatar
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    If i'm playing against tau or if I know i;m going to be playing a pitched battle game i'll always bring Ravenwing Bikers. That's when their ability to scout really shines.
    Start 18" up. Scout 12". Move 12". Blast away with bolters, meltas, flamers and what have you and then charge the poor squad you are attacking. The look on the tau players face when you wipe out two fire warrior squads before his first turn. Priceless.
    Or if you don't get first turn, you can just outflank with the bikes.

    Add me! Let me know your forum name too! =)

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    Ghost of LO ForgedInTheFurnaceOfWar's Avatar
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    Actually I was being imprecise in my use of language. The "buildings" I was referring to are actually "ruins." I will refresh my memory on the rules for ruins...! Thanks for the info guys!
    I think warhammer if a better game if you play with a little more relaxed rules regarding terrain. For example, if the building uses ramps or stairs, a skilled biker should easily be able to get up them.

    And a second floor should be read as, 3* inches off the ground of the terrain piece, not the table top. In my opinion. Thus allowing for the more cinematic biker assaults, either the tried and true, jump method, or the more daring standing on the seat of ones bike, and springing into the upper reaches of the building from there.

    *I can't remember what the rules say about this, if its 2 or 3 inches required to count as a second floor.
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    Senior Member darby5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ForgedInTheFurnaceOfWar View Post
    I think warhammer if a better game if you play with a little more relaxed rules regarding terrain. For example, if the building uses ramps or stairs, a skilled biker should easily be able to get up them.
    I agree. I thought about making a parking garage so I have at least one building I could go in. In my local high school someone even broke into the school at night with their bike a laid rubber down the halls - even on the second floor. I don't think they had a key to take it in the elevator. One way to do it would be if the model can fit they are good, that is the rule for infantry and walkers I believe.


    Is there any way to move this to the unfinished tactica section? I think my problem posting there had to do with Mozilla acting funny. IE worked better but Mozilla is working fine now too. Mozilla had the forums in some kind of mode with no indents or spacing - everything was just listed aligned to the left and I could only log in on certain pages.

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