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So I've gotten a few proxied games in with my GKs, and now I'm working on collecting the army 'in the flesh', and fine-tuning my tactics.
My army is a pair of 5-man Paladin squads, and then a squad of Purifiers which I combat squad and stick into 2 Stormravens (Melta and AssCannon, psybolts and TportHomers), each carting a Dread with a Multimelta and AssCannon with Psyammo. I use Draigo for my HQ, so my Pallies, Purifiers, and usually a Dread or two is scoring for me.
My strategy question though, is whether I should start the Ravens on the table, or in Reserves. I know that Ravens are definitely glass cannons, a lot of people don't like the idea of transporting squads in them, but I can vouch that mine have been superb. I normally start the game in one of two positions -
Ravens with everyone aboard (including Draigo, for Communion), sitting in my DZ with the Pallies waiting in orbit.
If I get the first turn, I go Flat-out to get into position, then on turn 2 I move 12" and start dropping models onto targets. Unless I'm on an objective or near a crucial enemy squad, first out is usually the Dread, to do some nasty close-ranged armor popping along with the Raven's anti-tank loadout. If I'm on an objective, I might wait for the Termies to Port in and capture it, but if I'm near an enemy squad (or a loaded transport) I assault out with the Purifiers and usually start wrecking face. Putting this much damage into two separate spots (2 Ravens with this loadout) normally overloads my enemy's line, and sends him scrambling.
But if I go second, I normally have to deal with my opponent most likely popping one of the Ravens, leaving my Purifiers and Dread to slog forwards on foot. The Dread typically makes it into range, thanks to having some armor and another Raven to soak up anti-tank firepower, but the 5 Purifiers on the ground are usually toast. Not a good spot to be in.
Everybody in Reserve - Ravens with everyone aboard and Pallies in orbit
This works just like the above strategy, except that my opponent gets a free first turn while my Ravens get to boost in rather than being caught flatfooted. The downside however, is that my Ravens don't always come in together, and sometimes the Pallies actually get there first (without the benefit of the TportHomers no less). If only one Raven shows up, it can be difficult to survive the incoming anti-tank fire, since I'm stuck deciding between going Flat Out, or only moving 12 and disembarking the Dread and unloading a preliminary anti-tank salvo in my shooting phase. If the Raven hits the deck before the other one shows up, I'm stuck with those same 5 Purifiers in the middle of a lot of enemy shooting.
I've tried keeping the Raven moving Flat-Out, even deploying the Purifiers via ShadowSkies (they pack 2 Psycannons, so not being able to assault isn't all bad) until the other Raven or some Termies decide to show up. This has hurt me in the past however, because I was waiting too long for the army to arrive and didn't have time to fulfill the mission.
Any suggestions from you guys? Especially if you've run a similar list.
When I first starting playing GKs I ran a list very similiar to this, and it was very fun, but I also had the same problems you seem to be having. The only thing I can recommend is a Librarian with Shrouding, unfortunately I cant see one fitting into your list anywhere without changing most of the list, and it would all come down to whether or not your local meta uses alot of high terrain items to hide behind first turn (this is what I did to pretty good effect - could not bring myself to putting my ravens into reserve, too much uncertainty).
The only other thing I can think of is to walk the paladins across the board, nobody likes 10 paladins marching towards their lines, and it may be enough to draw a good chunk of the enemies anti-tank weaponry?
Also how is this list doing for ya?
Honestly, I'd have to rate it at about a 75% on the effectiveness scale. The reason being is that when it works to plan, it guts just about anything the opponent sits in front of it. Dropping the MeltaDread that close to armor (and usually behind it) and then blazing away with the Raven and Dread against armor threats, plus the Mindstrike Missiles for early anti-infantry, makes this a pretty beastial army. I had a scare against an Orc player who ran mobs of shootaboyz a while back, but I happily deployed my Pallies and Dreads on the ground and brought my Ravens in on Reserves, and shot him to pieces before my Purifiers dropped in to mop up the units holding objectives.
The other 50% of the time, when the list doesn't go according to plan, I can still pull out victories, it's just much too close for comfort. There's something to said for wound-abuse Paladins, and the Purifiers are still good if you keep them hunkered down. I try to size up the situation - if saving the downed Purifiers is viable, I drop off the Purifiers in the surviving Raven (because there's about to be another turn of Raven-hate) and move for cover, then the Raven heads back to pick up the survivors. By the time they deal with the well-placed Dread and Purifiers, the wounded 'second wave' is getting into position.
The problem that I'm about to have, is that everyone suddenly wants to play Cityfight. Apparently, nobody but me wants to drop the money for any kind of Fliers, and even Dark Eldar can get their Reavers and Ravagers through narrow city streets. So because my GK and Guard are just so unfair with their Fliers, everyone wants to put me into a situation where I can't use them. Which is fine by me - I have plenty of Rhinos and Razorbacks sitting around who could use a fresh paint scheme.
To be honest cap, I wouldnt even go down the path of any transports - Take a Libby with shrouding (as everything is going to be in cover) and take all strike/interceptor/Purifier squads for max psycanons and psybolt shots - Keep everything within 12" of the Libby and just slowly make your way towards the enemy blasting the bejesus out of em.
edit* A purgation squad or 2 may also be a great investment in city fight
I've run the the stormraven assault deathstar list and honestly it isn't that fun to use, thing with putting so many points into your Paladins and not being able to take that many units with dedicated transports is your are not taking advantage of the grand strategy rule, this rule is amazing and honestly its about far more than making units scoring, I've done that, its a pretty cool thing to be able to do but honestly I think the real strength in the rule is being able to make units scout giving you the option to either outflank, get off a first turn charge (the unit inside can move 26" if they are in assault range).
I would actually disagree with people not liking Paladins marching across the table, I think most people would rather that, it gives them more time to deal with them rather than have them come screaming out of a redeemer or stormraven, teleporting paladins isn't a good idea either, why? I know plenty of people that will be packing S8+ Ap2 template weapons that are going to make a mess of that unit!
I would love to play city fight with my list, my Redeemer, dread and palaies with incinerators would be fecking awesome on that! just invest in some dozerblade