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"Attention all loyal servants of the emperor. Today you shall go to battle for the glory and good of the empire, to eradicate the xenos foe and claim ground in the magnificent name of Terra!"
Following on for Cadaver Junkie's recent ending of the topic of the week, I've taken it upon myself to bear this yoke and bring to fruition a new look topic of the week. Whether it involves tactics, theories, army styles or "focus on ... "s all will be written to be very much open ended to allow expansion by you, yes you, the reader.
And so, without further ado ...
"We begin this periodical with a look at one of the best and most flexible fighting units in the galaxy, the basic infantry squad. Yes, that's right, this versatile squad consists of ten men, charged with a specific mission each battle, to be tactically flexible but at the same time rigid and resolute. To seize ground, not to seize up with fear. To strike at the enemy where he is weakest with lasgun and bayonet. These are the guardsmen at the soul of the Emperor's Hammer."
The infantry squad. One of the more simple squads in the army yet one of the most used. It's cheapness allows it to be taken in numbers, it can blob up to be 50 strong or stay in its constituent groups of 10. It can stay cheap, or take assault or heavy weapons to allow it to fill a variety of roles: to take down hordes of orks, squads of elite chaos terminators, groups of skimming eldar vypers or heavy duty necron monoliths.
It also has the option of taking hidden power weapons, in the form of the morale boosting commissars and the ever present sergeants (except when the commissar gets upset, of course!). These can help swing a combat, tie up a squad for a turn or 2 and maybe even see off smaller squads.
Finally there is the option for the chimera, allowing an armoured company to roll onto the field. This adds an extra tactical element to the squad, which ca be discussed in more detail later.
So, there you have it, episode one of the Guardsman's Uplifting Magazine. I hope you've enjoyed the overview I've given of them. Please feel free to comment on your own styles of play with them, how many you take in a platoon, weapon loadouts, commissars, chimeras and anything else you can think of (that's relevant!).
Æ over and out.
Guardsmen are great. They're the fallback unit for so many armies. Great post.
(Note: My airborne vets are my unit of choice!)
Cheers. As I said, I'll be making it into a long running thing. The focus for the first few weeks will be units available to us, then maybe a look at common enemies, different builds, etc. I've not really set out a plan, but we'll see how it goes!
I take my platoons with 3 to 5 infantry squads, combined into 20 or 30 strong groups. There will be one vox per blob. Usual Special Weapons are Grenade Launchers and Heavy Weapons are Autocannons, rear squads may have lascannons. 30 Strong Blobs line squads may have Power Weapon Commissars.
Infantry Platoon : (for 50s strong, 30s use the first 3, 40s will have 2x A1-2 composition)
Platoon Command Squad
Infantry Squad A1 (Grenade Launcher & Autocannon, Vox)
Infantry Squad A2 (Grenade Launcher & Autocannon)
Infantry Squad A3 (Grenade Launcher & Autocannon)
Infantry Squad B1 (Grenade Launcher & Autocannon OR Lascannon, Vox)
Infantry Squad B2 (Grenade Launcher & Autocannon OR Lascannon)
While i like mortars i prefer to shove them in HWS on their own, that way i don't feel annoyed at losing potential lasgun shots because they hide behind line of sight breaker.
I do LOVES Flamers, but i think they are kind of wasted on line squads and reserve them for my counter attacks units.
Similarily Chimeras are reserved for Command and Special Duty squads.
Regimental Standards and commissars make the blobs fairly resilient to breaking and if you play with enough cover to be able to get them a cover save they should hold the line easilly enouh. If they have Commissars with them they might even actually beat something in close combat! Just make sure they don't get routed and run down too easilly...
Lia, how aggressive are you with those units? Do you sit back and fire or do you move up to unleash rapid fire hell?Do they have a specific role in the army at all?
Sorry for delay, i was quite busy over the last few days. And i'm tired so if something doesn't make much sense that's probably the reason but i think the third retyping should be clear enough. I mean... this one sound clear to me instead of just rambling....
Depend on situations and the terrain itself. But they are usually expected to do most of the anti-transport work, freeing the bigger guns to hunt down tanks and wipe out stranded infantry (while still being able to perform as anti-infantry.).
I usually have at least one platoon, one of those platoons will be led by a count as alraheim, their task will be to establish a crossfire, seize side objectives and overall be a pain.
Others platoons serves as an anchor and/or screen to protect the artillery, mortar, mobile elements (vets and Command squads) or other support vehicules (includes battle tanks.).
They will advance if the enemy won't, they will hold the line if the opponent must advance, really depend on how they are set up and what they are facing, but if possible they will hold fairly close together and in as much cover as i can get them and try to annoy the opponnent to close in rapid fire/assault range where the counter attacks units and Count as Straken's Counter Charge ability would be of use.
All that being said my experience might be a bit biased : i mostly play with friends on a bigger table than most (8x6) with much more terrains pieces than most people (well over 25%, usually more like 50%).
My own personal experience of Guardsman use is that they're essentially your armies best choice as the sacrificial element; not to say that callously using them as a meat shield is always advantageous. Yet through their often superior numbers they are one of the most efficient ways of occupying enemy Armour or even better bogging down enemy Anti-Armour allowing your strike force to counter and or support depending on role.
I know any vehical may choose to move out of assault range the moment it can move again but many many times I've witnessed my opponents offensive armour remain too focused on pacifying that hoard of flashlight wielding zealots making a racket on the hull. Thus my quicker scoring units or general objective seekers may go about their business (relatively) unhindered.
An open battlefield is nothing but a death trap - in war any visible target is a casualty no matter how well protected it may be.
The Tactica Imperium
"Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night"
Edgar Allan Poe
I agree with LIA that Flamers are somewhat of a waste in current Infantry Squads. Their main purpose as the backbone of a hardcore shooty army is to be equipped primarily with long range weapons if stationary, or a Grenade Launcher if you plan on having them for the assault. Though Assault can be tricky since if using Infantry Squads alone (NOT advised), somewhat large numbers are needed to be effective.
I also love Flamers as a Deathworld Veteran and I even utilise them for my Platoon Command Squad, especially when I decide to use a character similar to Captain Al'Rahem, and that is because I can take them in numbers higher than one. I should also try to fit a PCS with a couple of snipers and field-test it.
Anyway, back to the Infantry Squads. Currently I am testing on using Heavy Bolters and Snipers in my two squads and I find it a cool idea combined with the Psykers' Weaken Resolve ability, forcing the enemy squad to take a lowered Ld test. I do not have any Grenade Launchers since the highest percentage of my models are after Catachans and thus in the possession of some Flamers.
Maybe one day I shall report some games with the Sniper/Weaken Resolve trick. I wonder if I could replace the Heavy Bolters with Mortars for more Ld tests...though I have to acquire some first...
I've never been a fan of putting heavy weapons in my infantry squads, until the new dex gave us cheap Chimeras, so now the name of the game is drive to objective, dismount, shoot shoot shoot, and use chimeras as either shields, mobile pillboxes or taxis for other non mounted units.
So far I havent had much problems with the enemy doing a lot of chimera sniping, since when I have this motto of "when we roll, we ALL roll", so when I do have chimeras on the field its somewhere between 5-8 of them vrooming around with standard troops inside acting as the Aluminum Siding on the flanks of the Steel Wall of LRBT's that roll down center.
In my horde lists, the importance of Commissars begins to shine, our angry 35 point friend with his pointy hat can bring some nice hack-n-slash and positive reinforcement to the blob of merged squads that I tend to run about the table. I like to run 2 per blob of 50, and maybe either sub the HQ for a Lord Comm, or run an additional Lord with a rather 'lite' Straken CCS. Both choices compliment the roving blobs nicely with the only difference being the points you are willing to pay for the special abilities.
Last edited by Tronics; December 27th, 2009 at 20:41.
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