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2 Combi-Meltas, 2 Meltaguns, Powerfist
2 Combi-Meltas, 2 Meltaguns, Powerfist
Meltagun, Plasma Cannon, Powerfist
Land Speeder Storm
Land Speeder Storm
10 Assault Marines
2 Flamers, Powerfist
So, ten points left. Considering adding a Combi-Flamer to each of the Sternguard Squads. Or maybe dropping a couple of upgrades to give the Scout Sergeants powerfists too. Land Speeders are there to help the Scouts grab objectives or destroy vehicles on Turn 1 and (if they last that long) do a 24" dash to contest objectives on the last turn. Shrike infiltrates with the Assault Marines and aims to get a first turn assault, or support the Scouts. Ideally, the Scouts would destroy a transport and Shrike would swoop in to assault.
An alternative to the above would be replacing one Sternguard unit with 7 Assault Terminators, but this would get me one less Drop Pod on turn 1.
I like the list, with the exception of a few personal preference things; first, the meltaguns in your Sternguard. I find that their bolters are some of the best weapons in our arsenal, and it's a shame to get rid of them. At most I typically take a single heavy flamer for that deep striking template of doom, I'm not sure I'd take meltaguns. Take more combi-meltas if you're worried about anti-tank there.
For the Tactical squad, I'd recommend a missile launcher instead of the plasma cannon; it's free, and can be used against tanks AND infantry and be relatively effective against both.
Beyond that, I like the list idea overall. I'm not a fan of Land Speeders in general, but the Storms could be fun to use; just be careful as they are the only mobile vehicles you've got, so I don't imagine they'll stay alive all too long. Just make sure your Assault Marines don't get into combat completely unsupported, and don't rely on your Scouts to do a ton of damage. My personal favourite unit of Scouts would be snipers with camo cloaks and a missile launcher; they perform much more reliably with fire support than in combat, in my opinion, and you can always find other ways to take out tanks or transports. Just nitpicky stuff here, though.
I'm curious how the Scouts and Storms will perform for you; I haven't run them like that, I'm just a theoryhammer guy, and they don't seem to be better than my snipers on paper, but I can always be pleasantly surprised.
Of course, after being supported by only a Tactical Squad drop podding in, they were made mincemeat of the rest of the army. They need some tweaking and I'm not really sure Power Fists on the Scouts are worth it. Really, their only purpose is to disrupt enemy plans on Turn 1: grabbing objectives or assaulting key units (Heavy Weapons, Scout Snipers, Artillery, etc). If they survive the initial counter-attack, then they can be used as objective grabbers with their Fast Skimmer transports.
All that said, I think they're hella fluffy and I love the models so they're staying in for the time being.
My real issue is with the Assault Marines. They did absolutely nothing in the play-test (Sternguard replaced by Terminators) as there were no targets to assault on Turn 1 (everything was in transports). So when an enemy Sternguard squad dropped in and rapid fired, only Shrike was left standing.
Someone mentioned to me that Kantor may be a better option for this army. Shrike effectively only serves as an Assault Marine delivery system - nothing else in the army benefits from Fleet. With Kantor, the Sternguard would benefit hugely, giving me a total of 6 Scoring units. He would also free up some points and if I remove the Assault Marines, that gives me about 250 points to play with.
I'm glad to hear that the scouts performed well for you; they are indeed quite fluffy and it's always good to incorporate fluff in an effective manner into a list. I'd be worried about keeping them alive longer, myself, however. It seems like after that first turn, it's unlikely they'll accomplish much else, so you're kind of relying on them to be in good position that first turn otherwise they're wasted potential. I agree completely that the power fists are not worth it one bit; scouts are too easy to kill, and with squads of five the power fists won't survive to hit combat (or survive the first round of attacks, most likely). The only time I'll field a power fist in a squad of scouts is when I'm running a full ten decked out for combat (and supporting another combat squad, such as assault marines).
The heavy flamer on the Sternguard looks decent on paper, but you can't go wrong with holding onto their bolters; just an option to consider, the squad is still greatly effective with their stock bolters.
Regarding the assault marines, I understand your frustrations; the first turn charge isn't really applicable against most (competitive) armies simply because of their mechanised nature, as you mentioned. They could probably do well as a counter assault unit, but even then, chainswords and bolt pistols can only do so much. With Shrike, however, doesn't Fleet also help your scouts when assaulting with their melta bombs? Just something to keep in mind there. His infiltrate special ability can also work really well for units other than assault units; less so in your army, as everything pretty much is in a drop pod or infiltrating, but you could infiltrate any number of units into ideal positions, even if they aren't assault units.
Kantor is definitely a great character, and works exceptionally well with Sternguard (that's why they put him in the codex, after all). If you take out the assault marines, those leftover points could be used for a number of options: another tactical squad, some terminators, more sternguard, a dreadnought, two or three predators, etc. The list goes on, you really should just think of what you're missing; if you keep the list as-is with the exception of the assault marines, you're going to have a mostly shooty army. That's okay and, in fact, I prefer shooty armies to combat or more balanced lists, but you're going to have to use those points to either bring some balance in the combat areas (assault terminators could work, though how you're going to get them into combat without Shrike or a land raider is the issue here) or supplement your forces with more firepower.
Either way, I feel like if you're taking out ten Marines, you should add about that many back. Marine armies aren't the largest (numerically speaking) and it's always a good idea to have more MEQ infantry on the table.
Instead of creating a new topic, I've been playtesting this list for a few games and tweaked it a little. I present my third RG list:
10 Sternguard with 4 Combi-Meltas, Power Fist, Drop Pod 330
10 Tactical Marines with Meltagun, Plasma Cannon, Power Fist, Drop Pod 240
10 Scouts with Power Fist, Meltabomb, 4 Shotguns, 4 Sniper Rifles, Missile Launcher 155
5 Scouts with Meltabomb, 4 Shotguns 80
1 Land Speeder Storm 50
1 Land Speeder Storm 50
10 Assault Marines with 1 Flamer, Power Fist 225
What I'm stuck on is what to do with the points left? There's 175pt floating about but I'm not sure what to use it for. It could be:
- a Librarian with Terminator Armour and Storm Shield (deploy with Sternguard), a handful of Combi-weapons for Sergeants dotted about
- an Ironclad Dreadnought in Drop Pod
- a Devastator Squad with any 4 heavy weapons except Lascannons
- two Whirlwinds or Predators
- a Full Tactical Squad with Meltagun
- another five Sniper Scouts (added to 5-man squad) and a Jump Pack Chaplain
What would work best?
Personally, I feel like you might be better off with another tactical squad. Get some more power armoured bodies on the table. Of course, if you choose not to go with them, I'd opt for dual Predators; these will give your opponents' anti-tank weapons harder targets than your Land Speeder Storms to shoot at, which can only be a good thing. I'd also consider saving some points by swapping that plasma cannon on your tactical marines out with a missile launcher, but that's just personal preference; I'm not a fan of plasma, personally.
I'd go for the tactical squad or the Predators; they will give you some more balance, whereas the rest of the options are one-shot deals (a single Dreadnought, or the Jump Pack Chaplain). Regarding the Librarian, though, in the future I'd always recommend fielding your Librarian as cheaply as possible; 100 points for an HQ is wonderful in a Space Marine force, but as soon as you go higher than that, it's hard to justify when you aren't getting a direct bang for your buck (Shrike, or a relic blade, etc.). I don't believe in Terminator armour on HQs anymore. The Sternguard would be a good choice for him, however.
How have your combat Scouts performed for you? As a squad of five, I'm still worried that they'd be able to do well enough, but that might just be my theoryhammer mind at work. I haven't had a chance to test them all too extensively.
Nonetheless, the list is shaping up well (in my opinion) and definitely not quite your 'normal' Raven Guard, which gets kudos from me.
I tried a Terminator Librarian with Storm Shield dropping in with the Sternguard. Though he was good, he wasn't that good. His only achievement was laying down that AP3 Flamer on some enemy Sternguard before being squashed by a Powerfist. Nothing my Sternguard couldn't have done themselves with their versatile ammo.
But by far, the champions of the three test games were the Scouts. In the first game, they dropped a Land Raider before my opponent even got a chance to move it. In the second (Dawn of War setup) they removed the two scoring Combat Squads from my opponent's two objectives on Turn 1. In the third game, my opponent wisely chose to reserve everything, so before any of his units came on the board, I was holding all five objectives already.
Powerfist, though useful, is largely a waste of points on Scouts. If I get first turn, I want them to stay in assault during my opponents Turn 1 so they don't get shot to pieces. Powerfist is largely overkill. Their job isn't to beat down units, but to blow vehicles before they move and tie up defensive squads until the rest of my army catches up. If they survive the first-turn-push, the Storms are there to ferry them away to home objectives. This tactic has worked exceedingly well. Shotguns are great for softening units up before an assault and the Open-Topped Storms are a godsend.
One unit I haven't been able to get working well so far is the Assault Squad. In all the games, they've been shot to pieces before actually being able to assault. At most, I've been able to get the PF Sergeant and Shrike into combat. They seem to take priority in the opponent's mind and they do their best to shut them down ASAP. What I've found is that with the Scouts and Storms getting stuck in, having an Assault Squad there on Turn 1 is usually overkill. There will be nothing to assault that isn't already taken care of. Or if I assault that squad, I'll massacre it, leaving myself open for counter-attack in my Opponent's turn. Or, the opponent is in his transports. Or he's in reserve. The squad becomes a sitting duck.
What I haven't tried yet is Outflanking this squad. Coming on from the board edge, they have a 19-24" threat range. Any experience with this?
Okay, regarding what to add...
I really enjoy having the flexibility of a Meltagun and a Power Fist in Tactical Squads. It really makes the enemy think twice about getting close. Having a third Drop Pod also allows me to drop two on the first turn. This would give me between 4-7 scoring units able to get to all possible objectives on the first turn. I could consolidate them for Kill Point missions and positively overwhelm the opponent's deployment zone in Capture and Control, giving myself cover with the Drop Pods.
What do you think?
I haven't had a chance to really experiment with Outflank, but if having that first turn charge is overkill, it might be worth giving it a shot. It seems like people would forget that you have an additional, hard hitting squad coming out of reserves besides your drop pods, and it gives the enemy another element of your list to worry about; they don't want too many of their units too close to table edges at that point, and it lets you command more of the enemy's movement. Not a bad idea, probably!
The other thing you could try is to swap Shrike out for a cheap Chaplain with a jump pack; this would admittedly kill Fleet, but you'd get points for that extra tactical squad's drop pod, which could be fun. Raven Guard doesn't have to rely on Shrike to be Raven Guard, after all; I rarely use him, myself. Just something to think about here!
I'm a huge fan of drop pods, especially over alternative transport options, so I'd recommend trying to get that other tactical squad in there with that drop pod. Having two landing on turn one instead of just one could be invaluable!