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Ever since using a SW Venerable Dreadnought to lead my SW army I have been enchanted with Dreadnoughts in general. I started my army-building with a general mistrust of the dread . . . not really sure why . . . I guess it is a relatively low armor score, slow movement, etc. They just seemed to me to be fire-magnets.
But then I bought and began using a Venerable Dreadnought for my Space Wolves army (though I just bought a normal plastic model, I think the exposed head on the new ones are incredibly stupid, and decked it out with Space Wolf accessories) and it has worked amazingly well for me. It has survived every game I've used it in, two of which it was the last unit alive on my side (pity for me), and its not like I was constantly hiding it. One game it stared down a plethora of Tau vehicles (I'm not even gonna try to tell you what they are, I'm not up on my Tau units except that alot of them had very large/long guns on their turrets) . . . it charged ahead with a group of blood claws following close behind, only stopping to engage some firewarriors once its missile launcher got blown off and the plasma cannon wasn't going to do much against the vehicles . . . and yeah, I kinda wanted to keep its survival rate high . . . but the point is that it absorbed an awful lot of firepower that could have been directed elsewhere, and it was almost effective at getting that firewarrior unit below half strenght so it wouldn't count as a scoring unit (with no DCCW and after all the crap I'd put him through, my poor dread was very tired and seemed content to let the firewarriors hit him about the ankles while he made sure not to do anything that might scare them off and open him up as another target to heavy fire . . . I dont' blame him.)
But anyway, I've been much impressed with both the fire-power AND the staying-power of the SW Venerable Dreadnought. Now of course, the SW VD has much better statistics than the vanilla list SM Dread, and so this has me thinking, does a dreadnought have to be venerable to be of any use? I also know that almost any unit can be devastating if they are used in the right way during the right situations . . . so I guess my question is, are the two basic load-outs for the normal dreadnought (long-range vs. short-range) effective enough to use with relatively no headaches. The biggest reason I ask this is that I have seen my BT buddy use a normal Dreadnought (AC/DCCW) in 2 or 3 games and it never really did much, and that wasn't his fault. It simply didn't perform. Now I'm wondering, did he just have a run of bad luck, or what?
So here are some of my thoughts . . .
Close Combat Dreadnought -
Kitted with a Assault Cannon and DCCW w/ either SB or HF (depending on the type of enemy) and you put it in a drop pod, land it amongst the enemy's troops, use the drop pod to shield it from at least half the army, open up with the AC and charge as soon as you can.
That would seem very effect to me if everything goes well, meaning that it doesn't get blown to bits the turn it pops out.
The Long Range Dreadnought
Kitted with a TL Lascannon and ML. It basically sits back, probably moving 6" each turn, and fires away. The only thing, however, is that if it can shoot the enemy heavy weapons, they can probably shoot it back, so the only thing that will keep it alive for any length of time is having a juicier target on the board that the enemy will go for instead.
Basically my judgment on the basic dread is that either way you kit it out, it can deal some damage in the right situations. . . but it just seems so stinking vulnerable. As I said, I play SW with a Venerable Dread as an HQ, so I can't have any more venerables. If I could, I would use them without a second thought. So my question of usefullness basically rests solely on the basic codex dreadnought.
I would really like to use more of them if I could be convinced that they would be effective. Unfortunately my current financial state is not one where I can spend the money if I'm not sure about using the model once I have it.
If anyone has any good tactics, advice, strategies, or whatever concerning the various uses of dreadnoughts, I would really appreciate it. I looked in the 'articles' section here at LO, but didn't find anything that dealt with them, at least not from the looks of the various titles.
Anywho, this post is alot longer than it could have been, sorry for rambling . . . thanks in advance for your responses.
"There will never be enough peace in the universe unless first there is enough war." - Farseer Eleuflin
i field 6 venerable dreads and i get pretty good results. So far with the dread list i'm 3-0
Originally Posted by Crusade
lets see..... venerable dreadnought over here..... 8 man dev squad over there.... *makes weighing motion with hands* which is the bigger threat???
apparently all my opponents think its the dev squad, so my dreads typically make it through the battles.
dreads dont seem to be much of a threat as people make them out to be.
The best way to ensure that a Dreadnought survives is to either have more than one of them, or to take a lot of other vehicles/high priority targets.
I've seen pairs of Dreadnoughts do wonderfully together, marching along side by side, unleashing holy death on the Orks that were desperately trying to take them down with Rokkits. I've seen them double team Tau Hammerheads (the ones with the big long turrets ) and bring them down in a single turn of shooting. I've seen said pair of Dreadnoughts down even a Daemon Prince of Khorne.
While it's true that non-venerable Dreadnoughts do tend to go down easily, having two of them helps a lot. Your enemy won't often target them (especially if you keep them close together) in my experience, since they'll be going for "softer targets" (like a Devastator Squad or Rhino) that they can get easy Victory Points for taking out.
Strangely (and I know few people will agree with this), I've seen Dreadnoughts armed with an assault cannon and a missile launcher do exceptionally well. The missile launcher allows them to engage the enemy before it manages to get into assault cannon range. Sending a krak missile downfield at an enemy tank or a frag into a tightly clusted group of infantry as a way of opening the battle is never a bad thing (unless you're the one being hit by said missile).
Firedrake pretty much hit it right on the head. A single dreadnought is more often then not only a liability. However, more then one, and they can rock. ESPECIALLY if you Drop Pod them together.
It's a beautiful thing to watch your oppenent squirm as he suddenly has 2 Dreadnoughts in the middle of his forces... And for simple reasons of inspiring fear, I always take the Heavy Flamer when I DP them.
This is a great tactic, cause your oppenent will either be forced to focus a lot of firepower on them, giving the rest of your forces a break, so they can move up, fire, or whatever relatively unmolested. Or he can split his fire, which is unlikely to do much to the dreads, or he can ignore them altogether, but if he is that dumb, winning should be a problem anyway.
Personally, I have found that this configuration is the best for getting its points back, and causes maximum chaos to your opponent.
I personally have had some great success with a drop podded dreadnought. I only have one and I make it venerable. Give it assault weapons and a heavy flamer since it'll be in the heart of the enemy forces anyway and watch it tear stuff up.
Use the drop pod to cover the thinner rear armor and then he has to get through the armor in the front/sides. If he managed hurt it badly then I have a chance of keeping it alive. This keeps him from getting full victory points, locks down units in close combat for extra turns, causes him to devote far more firepower then he ought to in destroying it, or simply frustrates him no end.
All of the above work for me. I've lost a few but but not many. It's far more likely he blows off all the guns and immobilzes it and then spends another turn shooting it out of simple frustration. Usually to no effect.
Oddly enough, I find that using dread in the long range support role tends to get them killed much much quicker then in the close combat role. Anything they can hit can hit them back, and more then likely has thicker armor to boot.
May your aim be true, and your targets plentiful.
IronFather,Originally Posted by IronFather0
Even with Heed the Wisdom of Ancients you can only get up to 3 Venerable Dreadnoughts. Unless your using a list I'm not aware of.
Edit: Disregard the above. A rereading of Heed the Wisdom of Ancients makes it clear that any Elite dreadnoughts have to be Venerable, and any Heavy Support dreadnoughts can be Venerable. In case there was any doubt the recently updated Space Marine FAQ makes this quite clear.
Last edited by Valerian; September 1st, 2006 at 23:07.
i've never had any real luck with my dreadnoughts, i'm thinking of retiring them from my 2000pt list, and only use them in my 3000pt list(all the stuff i have so far put together). they are just too fragile.
Originally Posted by Valerian
heed the wisdom says that elite dreads MUST be venerable, not the other way around