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Ok, a loose thread, how do you lot use the sternguards?
holding objectives, uber tactical squads, gunline, nutting squads? also dos and don'ts would be useful..... any need for upgrades? Just a general discussion on sternguards...
Creation of this thread was really down to the sucsess of the sternguard in 'Favourite Elite choice poll created be Master Lucius. Just wondering how to put the vets to task...
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I dont use Sternguard, so this reply is simply off what i've seen them do while watching or playing against them.
i think the best use of Sternguard is just for fire support. They are just regular marines after all. Basically you gotta take advantage of rapid fire, but without putting them in too much of a risk. It's wierd because the box set comes with a powerfist model, but they are pretty expensive to begin with, and I wouldn't really give the seargent even a powerweapon. In close combat, they are no better then a regular marine, but cost more, meaning you do not want them in close combat.
I've seen people be very successful using Sternguard in drop pods, but when they are in rhinos or footslogging accross the board, they are too vulnerable. They do not have a great range, and like i said, you want to take advantage of rapid fire as opposed to their regular range. Drop pods are pretty great as well so I really think they go good together.
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Well, I am just starting Space Marines (and restarting 40k after nearly 7 years of playing naught but fantasy), so what I plan on doing with sternguard might not be considered the smartest of tactics.
I was thinking of running a unit of 5 with a couple combi-meltas and joining a Librarian to them that had Smite and that Gateway power. I was thinking that using them this way would make them really flexible. They could do as well as always at gunning down infantry and the could gateway around to capture objectives or use combi-meltas on armour.
This would be in a 1k list btw. Is this a good use of them?
"I am the architect of fate!"
With sternguards, you must consider getting Pedro Kantor! This will make them scoring just like troops. Also, try to maximize your unit for maximum killing power. In 1500pt games, I'd get 2x10 squads of sternguards + Pedro. I'd also get a Plasma Cannon and a meltagun and pop them either in rhinos or drop pods. The combi-melta idea sounds cool, but can get rather pricey.
If you cant get ahold of pedro Lysander would be a good replacement as you re roll all bolter hits. Id use them to sit on something and shoot all day.
If a Million Guardsmen die, that's a statistic. If one marine dies, that's a tragedy.
Our local gaming guru's current list revolves around lysander, and by revolves i mean literally. He is the key to the whole army. He shoves 10 sternguard in a landraider with lysander. Not cheap but anything it shoots with a toughness value dies.... anything. 2+ to wound with 20 re-roll to hit shots at ballistic skill 4... YES PLEASE!!!
Do they bolter rerolls count when using the blast type ammunition on the Sternguards?
If so I have an Ork killer....
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A creative use of the bolter drill skill and special ammunition...
Lysander's bolter drill does not specify special ammunition, it states that any heavy bolters, storm bolters, bolters and bolt pistols may re-roll failed rolls to hit.
So I'd say yes; the scatter dice and the 2d6 can be re-rolled when firing the Hellfire Shell.
Unfortunately however, the blast type ammunition is only available to scout squads and their heavy bolter's Hellfire Shell. Sternguard only get Dragonfire, Kraken, Vengeance and Hellfire rounds, not shells. None of the Sternguard bolter ammunition types are blast, albeit the Dragonfire sounds like one.
You'd have to join Lysander to a scout squad, and I'm sure Lysander's got better things to do than hide in the bushes.
As for Sternguard, the role you give them depends on the role you need. They are designed to be tactically flexible, as their veteran number of attacks and special weapon ammunition available to them. If you've got Pedro, treat them as you would more fragile tactical squad. Otherwise, I'd keep them back, lurking about, acting as a reserve of sorts. That Kraken bolt means you can snipe out enemies while you remain relatively safe from their fire zone. When one of your positions needs assistance, you can hop in a rhino, drive on up and unleash bolter fire. Use them to plug up positions where you are weakest.
To me, Sternguard just ooze the "reserved warrior" sensation, who waits and reacts to the flow of the battlefield with the proper weapon. This reflects their fluff after all; men sent to where the line is most vulnerable. I use them in that manner and they work well for me.
The only upgrade I consider necessary for Sternguard is the Rhino, otherwise I leave them as is. They're already pretty good and already quite expensive. At most I'll give them a power fist. I don't give them combi-meltas, as I feel that it's a waste using their weapons on tanks, combi-plasmas feel a little redudant for me as well as flamers.
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Hey all, I currently run a 10 man Sternguard squad in all my 1500 point lists with good success. They are by far my favourite unit in the SM codex and if used properly can be devastating!
A standard 9 man squad with 1 power-weapon (serg) and 2 combi-meltas (250 points), is enough to sort out any unit, and with a librarian joining the squad and using Gate of infinity they become very good tank and character hunters. The Vengence rounds are a little dangerous to use, but i have wiped out a whole SM squad in one turn of shooting!
(Played an all drop pod army, first pod dropped in front of my sternguard and i shot them all up in one turn, though did loose one marine myself (get's hot), then moved the sternguard to tackle his next wave of droppods and took out another squad in one turn, again loosing one of my own. Lucky but nice).
A 10 man squad with 2 heavy flamers and Vulcan in a drop-pod. they're tough enough to land amid hoards and do some uber damage (3 re-rolling heavy flamers) and survive the next round of shooting. This combo is a lot of points but does do some considerable damage to hoard armies and ties up a nice large section of the board.
If anything, i'm adding a 10th man to my first mentioned squad so i can combat squad them, and only send 5 men (including the combi-meltas) with the librarian to hunt tanks and weak spots, while the other 5 man squad stays behind my lines to bolster defences where necessary.
Hope that helps.
P.s. though not designed as a close combat squad they have never fared too badly for me
So far I've use them in quite a similar way to the way people here have mentioned.
Here are my 2 Top Tips though:
1 - Stick them in a drop pod with Tigurius. Adding him to the squad as opposed to a regular librarian has 2 very major benefits.
His special ability to allow the re-roll of reserve rolls means that you can control when your drop-pod Sternguard of doom arrive much better.
The fact Tigurius has all the powers and can use 3 a turn play to the Sternguards greatest strength - flexibility. No matter what you need to shoot, the Sternguard have a round or combi-weapon ideal for the task, and Tigurius has a psychic power to complement it:
Big monster? Hellfire rounds and Vortex.
MEQs? Vengeance Rounds and Smite.
Vehicle? Combi-Meltas and Vortex (or Machine Curse I guess).
Enemy in cover? Dragonfire rounds and The Avenger.
Invulnerable saves? Hellfire/Vengeance (as appropriate) and Null Zone.
Add to this the ability to do Force Dome or Gate of Infinity when required and you have a superb shooting combo.
The list goes on. Needless to say Tigurius also makes them a more daunting prospect to assault because of the CC related powers he can use, his natural skill and Force Weapon.
2 - Combat Squads. I use a 10 man squad (whenever I can afford it) with 3 Combi-Meltas in and a powerfist. Because they are in a drop pod, I don't have to pick whether or not I split them into combat squads, or what I am putting in which, until they hit the ground.
This means that if there is an enemy vehicle and other unit close together, I can split into 2 squads with all the combi-meltas in 1 squad to take out the vehicle, then use the other 5 with whichever special ammunition to fire on the others. Combined with Tigurius' Null Zone this allowed me to easily kill a Chaos Demolisher and a Daemon prince on the turn the squad landed (they went on to do a hell of a lot more besides as well)!
It also means that you can use 1 drop pod to get two hard hitting squads on the board at once, which can really force the enemy to change their plans as they will only be able to target one of the squads at a time!
3 - Only joking, there is no 3.
Rather than a tip though, a plan: I have already converted 2 Sternguard with heavy flamers, and I want to do another 2 and a sergeant with combi-flamers as my 'anti-boyz mob' unit. They will be horrendously specialised but hopefully they will burn some serious ork.