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If there's one trend I've noticed lately, it's the inclusion of Feel No Pain all over the place, combined with super powerful 3+/2+ save troops (Blood Angels, Grey Knights and I hear Necrons will be the same, not to mention Dark Eldar and Tyranids already have it all over the shop)
Perhaps it's time for the unpopular Plasma Gun to make a comeback? Loading up Sternguard, Command and Biker squads with the stuff. Now that Tyranids and Dark Eldar have FNP, Flamers don't have the punch they used to, though the Melta Gun is hard to beat in a world where vehicles are still king.
You might see it being used occasionally, but unless GW does something to make meltaguns not as massively superior compared to every other AT gun then they'll only be a niche weapon.
Between the relatively low strength, the price, and the chance of killing the user with every shot, Plasma really just isn't as nice as melta for a general purpose squad.
That said, I do prefer plasma cannons as the heavy weapon for my tactical squads. They *do* fill a niche roll that isn't always filled by the rest of your army.
Sounds nice but for general purpose the Melta gun is better and much cheaper. Plasma is nice for unit that can't have meltas, of Plasma Cannons are always nice
I am an Indestructible master of War.
Its also important to take into account the risk factor of plasma guns, they can backfire. Spamming them is just asking for some misfires. I understand the concern though, feel no pain, 2+ 3++ saves are becoming common place in some armies but that is why space marines have vindicators, sternguard, thunder hammer terminators and lascannon/twinlinked plasma gun razorbacks.
Space Marines have plenty of counters besides plasma guns that are a lot more reliable
Reese's Space Marine and Tyranid WIP Thread: Warp Masters and Friends
Infernus pistols are quickly becoming my weapon of choice. Even though they only have a 6" range, they offer the bonus +1A, and generally surprise my opponents. It's like having an almost guaranteed wound for every charge. Put 5 of them in a death company and it's super overkill for any tank you decide to charge. You can destroy the vehicle before you get into that nasty explosion range.
I played a codex space marines army in last edition when you could take chapter traits that always took the (2) assault weapon vs. heavy choice in troops. I would then load up with two plasma guns and a plasma pistol on the sgt. With four squads like that, I would generally lose maybe 1-2 to overheats a game. However, I got most of my shooting kills with the plasma. It's just sooooo annoying unloading 20 bolter shots, getting 13 hits, 7 wounds, then having the enemy save them all. With the plasmas, I would get 6 shots (back when pistols shot twice), 4 hits, usually 3-4 wounds, and enemy would have 0 saves.
Last edited by Jaileint; May 9th, 2011 at 20:12.
if I include plasma guns in my list it is usually in the Command squad if I take a captain. The apothecary gives some nice security against the overheats and that much plasma will tear apart almost any kind of infantry and light vehicle.
Most elite infantry-killing tends to be done in close combat; power weapons (and even instant death-causing CC attacks) have been proliferating at the same rate as special weapons. Add in the fact that plasmagun-spamming units usually get charged after their first volley (hello, Furious Charge spam!) and it isn't hard to see why plasmaguns haven't caught on the way meltas have.
"My tanks have names, my men have numbers." -Col. Edmund Grahvess, 23rd Kronecker Prison Guard
I plasma spam. It's not competitive, but it's alright. People tend to think that losses due to Gets Hot! happen much more often than they actually do. It's easy to forget all the times your plasma guns work fine (who remembers rolling a 2+ to wound?), but you'll always remember that time you were going to take down that avatar and your riflemen shoot themselves in the foot and then the avatar proceeds to charge you and wipe out the squad next turn, taking them off the objective and losing you the game. And, of course, you will still have those games where you feel like you lost half your force to your own bad die rolls.
But most of the time, it works as intended. And I've been let down by more meltagun shots than I have been burned by Gets Hot! rolls. I have many more stories of shooting side armour on a predator and have my meltagun whiff, whereas I can generally assume one of the two plasma shots will hit. Plus I have bad luck saving explosion wounds, so I don't like to get too close to vehicles I'm trying to destroy.
Something to add: I don't use my plasmaguns every turn. If I'm firing at orks boyz or something, I stick with the basic bolt pistol. I only use the rifle when I need the extra punch.
Plus there are a number of platforms were you can mount the darn things and they dont overheat,use those!
Who am i kidding?What dedicated DA player can stray from plasma guns?
Praise be to the Emperor!!