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  1. #1
    Weirdboy lordsauron's Avatar
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    Hatred of Combat Squads(Why are they becoming the norm?)

    Ever since the Dark Angels codex has come out the staff at my local GW have been commenting on how "godly" they are. "They can seperate into two" one says, "Wicked for Devastators" says another. But I'm thinking, "If I wanted two squads made of 5 guys each, why wouldn't I just choose them?"

    To me, herein lies the stupidness of the combat squad. If one wanted to field these weiner squads they can already do it! I don't really want to be pressured into using a 5 OR 10 man squad. What if I want a 7 man squad?

    Here's a funny thing though. The manager at my local GW lifted the ban of unpainted models. It used to be that we couldn't use them if they weren't painted and based, now we can. of course you get a gaming penalty, but still. His reasoning, "I don't want to force people to do stuff they don't want to do with their armies." Aha! Well if GW shares anything like this view, "Wanting our armies to be our own.", then why do they keep dumbing down the rules for, what it seems like, the new players.

    So, Combat Squads. What do you think?
    -AND-
    Do you think GW is "noobifying" the codecies?

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  3. #2
    Advocatus Diaboli Rork's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lordsauron View Post
    Ever since the Dark Angels codex has come out the staff at my local GW have been commenting on how "godly" they are. "They can seperate into two" one says, "Wicked for Devastators" says another. But I'm thinking, "If I wanted two squads made of 5 guys each, why wouldn't I just choose them?"

    To me, herein lies the stupidness of the combat squad. If one wanted to field these weiner squads they can already do it! I don't really want to be pressured into using a 5 OR 10 man squad. What if I want a 7 man squad?
    Players often bring it on themselves. There is a tendency for some elements to take "5 (or 6) wound lascannons" in spades or lots of land speeders etc.

    GW have given people the choice, and the players abused it. So understandably, GW have gone back to the background (and 2nd ed) roots of the 5/10 man layout. Taking 6/8 man squads has become a meta-game in itself, as has bulking out on drop pods (for those with money) and land speeders (everyone else).

    The "But my army is fair and balanced!" brigade will come along, but frankly they're a minority who didn't do enough to show the powergamers the door.

    6 90pt lascannons, dual assault cannon termies and 6-9 land speeder tornadoes are going to be a thing of the past.

    I expect when they redo Codex: Space Marines they'll be a bit more flexible than DA/BA, but the days of Space Marines being able to have everything is over. Living with a downside is something Space Marines will have to accept (The rest of us do).


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  4. #3
    Weirdboy lordsauron's Avatar
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    The way I see it GW is not even trying to represent it fluff-wise. If they were all marines would be stronger. But I don't see why the Space Marines should take a penalty because of retard power gamers.
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  5. #4
    Now with STFU flames! Caluin's Avatar
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    The last 'Combat Squads sucks!' thread hasn't even been locked a week, and already another one is up?

    Perhaps if this one can produce something positive I'll keep it open. But if it's just going to be a general whinefest like the last ones have been, then it'll be closed just like the rest. Perhaps people can talk about how to maximize the effect of Combat Squads, rather than bitch and moan about them?


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    Weirdboy lordsauron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Caluin View Post
    The last 'Combat Squads sucks!' thread hasn't even been locked a week, and already another one is up?
    Sorry Caluin.

    Quote Originally Posted by Caluin View Post
    Perhaps if this one can produce something positive I'll keep it open. But if it's just going to be a general whinefest like the last ones have been, then it'll be closed just like the rest.
    I'll try to keep more on topic.

    Quote Originally Posted by Caluin View Post
    Perhaps people can talk about how to maximize the effect of Combat Squads, rather than bitch and moan about them?
    That's an excellent idea actually. How can the Combat Squad improve the game, folks? Can it be used to our advantage to complete a mission on the tabletop. How can they be used by power games? How can we stop them?

    These are the questions I now want answered.
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  7. #6
    Now with STFU flames! Caluin's Avatar
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    In that strain then, I think the most obvious effect is Devestators. I know you said you could already buy five man Dev squads anyways, but you only have so many FO slots to fill. Let's say two armies are built exactly the same - two HS slots have been filled by Predators, the other by a Devestator squad with 4x Lascannons. One army uses Combat Squads, the other does not.

    The army without Combat Squads is forced to fire all four Lascannons at a single Predator per turn, wasting shots. The Combat Squads force can elect to fire two Lascannons at one Predator, see how the result turns out, and then decide whether to fire the other two at the same Predator, or possibly knock the second one out of the picture as well.

    I rather like that flexibility.

    The second use I've found is in Alpha level missions. Seek and Destroy is a perfect example, though others can apply as well. Seek and Destroy Alpha is all about how many Scoring Units you can keep alive. Effectively doubling your Scoring Units without sacrificing any models or FO slots is a game winning move, and is done before the first turn.


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    Always Fabulous NiteRabbit's Avatar
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    Combat Squads are a bit of a double-edged sword, in my opinion. The obvious pro from the point of view of a standard tactical squad without any upgrades is that it splits into two separate scoring units, and to the people who say "yeah, but I could just take two squads of 5", I say that this only works for so many units before you run out of slots on the FOC. Instead of thinking "aww man, we don't get to take lots of separate small squads anymore", I think that people should be saying "hot damn! We get to take LOADS of small squads now!"

    The obvious downside to this is that each of those scoring units is now 5 Marines strong and therefore are much easier to drop below half strength than a 6-man squad. No doubt it would be fun for Chaos Space Marines (who can be fielded in warbands of a significantly larger number) to take a 12 Marine unit and split it into groups of 6 but seeing as how that probably won't happen, let's just call that a lame attempt at humour on my part. The other downside to the new Codex entry for Tactical Marines in Codex: Dark Angels is that the point costs of special and heavy weapons have been changed and swapped around to accomodate the new rules, making it even harder to get access to such weaponry. This means that the traditional Lascannon/Plasma Gun fire support squad is a little bit more costly but then again, it was always quite cost-effective to begin with so Space Marines aren't exactly getting neutered here, simply brought into line.

    Other than not being able to take squads of 8 or 6, I'm not sure what else has changed, and the much beloved plasma gun is still as easy as ever to acquire on a Tactical Squad. Not much has changed unless you were particularly fond of Tactical Lascannons and if that was the case, then perhaps looking into Devastator Squads with Missile Launchers or looking to Predator Annihilators for your High Strength fix might help...sort of.

  9. #8
    Son of LO Tenozuma's Avatar
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    I like combat squads, I think they make the space marines are more balanced army, they're certainly more fluffy and they're more fun to play against. As caluin pointed out, with the devastators they are amazing. Combat squads get a huge double thumbs up from me, I hope they really do become the norm.

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  10. #9
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    Caluin summarized the advantages of CS (Combat squads) pretty nicely.

    I would also add that it forces the opponent to divide its firpower more, especially annoying with large pie plates, as well as opens plenty of possibility for defense against assaults. Insted of having 6/8 marines locked in assault, you can feed the ennemy 5 on one side, while the other five remain free to rapid fire around. Just be careful that large ennemy units cannot charge both your CS.
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    Professional Lurker sithjack's Avatar
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    And now for the one that no one ever mentions: Assault squads. Take a squad of 10 and break it into two squads of five and run them together. It forces more targetting checks, forces the enemy to split their fire, and you have two squads in the assault rather than one.

    You could also use Combat Squads to field two squads of scout snipers while leaving room for company vets and termies.

    Answers to the questions I see coming up for the assault tactic above:
    1) Why shouldn't I just take two squads of 5 assault marines, I'll get an extra hidden powerfist?
    A: Because that costs somewhere around 40-50 points more and leaves you with only one other FA slot open.

    2) Why split them up? They need to take a morale check from less shooting?
    A: Very true, but only half of them will run if you fail that check, then they have to do it to the other unit to make them run too.

    3) Interesting idea, where'd you come up with it?
    A: Once upon a time I used the option from question one, then I needed another couple points at my disposal.
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