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If I have a commander Helios configuration, I want to keep my IC status right? But with the range of my weapons wouldn't he be going in closer than any other unit so chances are he will be the closest to the enemy. If so why not send in a body guard to assist him.
The reason I mention this is that from most of the army lists I've seen people send him in solo.
You can send him in with a sqaud of gun drones or any other vehicle.There are plenty of ways to have other units closer then the HQ. I would not recommend a body guard unless there will be drones or you can effectively move using terrain not only does it make you lose the IC, but you now have a very high point target. I have deepstriked in a HQ and 2 bodyguard as helios and killed 6 marines, though i have found DSing usually ends up with getting only that round of shooting and then the unit gets wiped.
Yeah, the "ring of protection +8" is a wonderful tactic. By surrounding your commander with a unit of drones, you get the protection of IC without the hastle of vehicles/terrain. Of course, the drones still can be shot at. Riki can be thanked for this tactic, I think.
As a side note, I've never had problems getting my Helios5 into position. As an IC, and with so many other crisis/tanks flying around, it's almost target saturation. Of course, I play a solidly mech list. Perhaps a hybrid list or static list would have a harder time?
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Can drones be taken as a troop choice?
Check the Tau codex mate. Drones are a Fast Attack choice
The ring of protection is indeed a great tactic. Makes your HQ very survivable if used correctly - and adds a decent amount of close range punch.
I have used the free piranha drones same way. I drop disembark them and with 2 piranha monat and run the 4 drones in front of my HQ along with the 8 from the 3rd fast attack. Opponents underestimate the power of the drones. I had my free (2)drones kill 4 chaos marines(2 in cc). Last game i played my 4 free drones downed i think 5 greyknights and survived to turn 5.
So Helios commander can join the fast attack drones. OK sounds good, but because he is an IC if they are gunned down he won't have to deal with any morale issues because of his IC status right?
They're not reccomending your IC join the Drones, just stay behind them. So no, he wont have to take an LD test.
Yeah I started thinking about it after I posted and left my computer. It makes sense, it is a totally seperate unit that the commander just happens "follow" I guess around the battlefield. I get it, a pretty slick trick. Now with all of the info I will be posting a 1000pt list in the army list section.
Thanks to everyone for you insight to my questions.