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As a new Dark Angels player I was wondering about the chapters special rule that allows plasma cannons to be taken on dreadnoughts (as spec'd in the Dark Angels Codex Update on the GW website). I'm sort of planning a slightly fluffy army where (as befits the oldest chapter and its resources) plasma technology is well used.
This means Assault squads and my commander with plasma pistols, tactical squads with plasma guns and some with plasma cannons. But as DA can't take veterans as elites I plan to use some termmies and some dreads.
I was wondering about dreadnoughts with plasma cannon. I plan to have a 'standard' dread (assault cannon & fist) but also a blast template version. The standard way would be the missle left arm but then I lose my close combat arm.
The way I see it is that with a plasma cannon I get the same template as the missle launcher but with one less point of strength (but better AP value) and more importantly the Forge World plasma arm for the Dreadnought is right handed meaning I keep my close combat fist. Seems a winner to me.
Has anyone tried this? or have any advise? How useful is a template dread?
I use it quite a bit in 3rd ed, and its a very effective combination. The forgeworld model is good too, and not an incredibly expensive bit of kit. However with 4th edition many would argue that the Assault Cannon arm is the better fit.
I would do what you want as a matter of personal preference. I found the plasma mount the daddy against Terminator Squads, where I would hit them with the Templates, kill and then charge in and polish the remainders off. Fluff-wise the Plasma arm is better for DA, and is a good multi-purpose fit. I'd take it against armies with a high individual points value where its AP2 will be better for you than rending, for example Deathguard, Grey Knights, World Eaters, Iyanden armies, 13th Company etc.
Thanks for the advice - I'm still pretty new to this.
Good to see another Dark Angels player nearby - Liverpool! I'm based near Ormskirk but am from Bootle.
Fluffwise, the plasma arm is sweet and, gamewise, it's still a good weapon. I'd say it's not nearly as good as the new autocannon, though, for multi-purpose.
Assuming you are playing a person who is keeping units in maximum coherency, you're likely to get 1 full hit and 1-2 partials from a plasma cannon, assuming it hits (hits on a 3+, so a 2/3 chance it will hit). If you got 2 partials, you're likely to get 1 hit. So if everything goes fairly well, you're likely to get 4/3 wounds per turn (2/3 chance to hit multiplied by 2 casualites inflicted). Against vehicles, you'll get S7+d6 for AP, so you can take down AV13 or less from range. The major advantage it does have is that it has 12" longer range than an autocannon. I think it would be a nice pair with a missile launcher for a long-range support dread, but not a versatile shooting/cc dread. Additionally, the plasma can really shine after units deepstrike, also, like necrons or terminators, where the plasma cannon's template WILL get 2-3 full hits and another 3-4 partials, likely.
Pros of plasma:
-Instakills T3 or less
-Has the potential to hit many many targets if cohernecy is very close (i.e, after deepstrike)
Cons of plasma:
-Only gets a d6 for AP
-Less effective against experienced players who know how to keep units at max coherency
-Dependent on template hitting many models to be effective against horde armies
The rending autocannon gets 4 shots, which gives a 2/3 of getting at least 1 rending shot. 2 of the other 3 shots are likely to hit, and, against T4, there's a 4/3 chance they will wound. So you're inflicting 1 no-save wound and 4/3 saveable wounds per round against 2+ save targets. They have 5/6 of a chance to save, so you'll be inflicting 4/18 of a wound actually. So every turn, you inflicting 11/9 wounds against a target. This is comparable to the 4/3 = 12/9 wounds of the plasma cannon. Additionally, against 4+ targets, the other 4/3 wounds will land with no saves. This means you're inflicting 7/3 = 21/9 wounds per turn against higher save targets, which is much better than the still 12/9 wounds per turn of the plasma cannon. Additionally, against vehichles, you are likely to hit with 3 of the 4 shots. This gives a 1/2 chance of getting a 6 for AP, which then allows another d6 to be rolled.
Pros of assault cannon:
-4 rending shots
-Can take low armor-save units fairly effectively due to rending and high volume of fire
-Also effective against horde armies with its decent AP, strength, and volume of fire
-Has the potential to penetrate/glance any AV
-4 shots always have the potential to hit 4 targets (closeness of coherency is immaterial)
Cons of assault cannon:
-Lower range than plasma
-Dependent on rending for its best capabilities (taking out low save troops and high AV vehicles)
-Will never hit more than 4 targets, unlike a template
They both have their pros and cons, but I still favor the assault cannon because it has nearly the same effectiveness statistically, and has the capability to do a bit more against vehicles and horde armies. I think the assault cannon is a nice weapon to pair with a CCW, since it's lower range necessitates moving in closer. Similarly, the longer range of the plasma makes it a nice weapon to pair with a missile launcher as a support platform.
Last edited by samurai_socks; January 4th, 2016 at 14:46. Reason: DELETED.
Ormskirk? I'll have to have you a game some day against my pseudo-Dark Angel army (don't ask).
The man does have a point about not gluing the arms on. I'm posting anyway to ask if your aware of the Dark Angel dreadnoughts that can have guns on both the left and right arms (I forget the names), kind of like the opposite of a Furioso? Then you could have two plasma cannons...very DA.
Last edited by samurai_socks; January 4th, 2016 at 14:45. Reason: DELETED.
I doubt you wouldn't be able to use a FW dread, as long as it follows the codex rules :p
Indeed, but the Mortis isn't a codex model, and it doesn't have twin plasmacannons, only twin ML, AC, LC and HB
Yeah, I'm 99.9% certain the Plasma (FW or coversion) is 100% legal (2 percentages there. hmmm). Thanks for your help on this everyone.
Another question - a chance search on the GW store (UK) found a front plate of a DA dreadnought - in metal not plastic. I guess this is a old component but does anyone know if it will fit the current plastic one? It would be a good fluffy item to swap, perhaps it could be my venerable dread front plate?
Addoran - Have you been to the Liverpool game room on a Monday night? Any good? I had a talk with the shop guy and he said it would be fine to come along as an over 18 (and then some) beginner.