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As I'm still thinking of how to exactly compose a 1500 point force, which would be considered overall good. The answer I'm trying to get here, excludes the differences in mission types. So the force I'm trying to create, has (somewhat) equal chances of winning an Objective mission, as a Kill Point mission.
When considering these criteria, a few variables can be pointed-out, which have a major impact on the armies effectiveness. I believe these variables are the following:
1. High Phase-Out (i.e. a minimum of 25 models have to be destroyed in order for Phase-Out to occur. Please keep in mind the number of objective claimers that has to be included);
2. An or more exit-strategies when confronted with CC (i.e. Monolith Portal or Veil of Darkness);
3. Decreasing the chance and/or impact of an assault (i.e. by deploying Tomb Spyders in the core of your force, so they can assist in handling an incoming assault);
4. Diversity (Although this variable might be easily considered "non-effective" in a Necron army, I do believe a diverse Necron Army is more effective than a "Straight-Forward Blast and Destroy" kind of force);
5. Destroyers (How many? How many in a squad? Should they operate as a core of firepower or spread (potential) hits over a certain amount of targets? I do believe that every effective Necron Army has got to have Destroyers, only how many would be considered "most-effective" in comparison to the other variables?);
6. Opposing Tanks and/or MC's (I'm still not sure what can be best included to take care of opposing AV13/14 and numerous amounts of MC's (Pointing at Tyranids in particular). Heavy Destroyers seem more effective, although they are in general more easily shot down and are rather expensive. In other words, what (type of) forces should be dedicated to this kind of threat?).
I believe the most (overall) effective Necron Army lies somewhere in between the integration of these variables. So my question to you is, which of these variables should claim more of the resources (read: Points) of a Necron army in order to be effective? Moreover, what should, according to you be the allocation of Points (in terms of precentages) to these variables to create the most (overall) effective Necron Army?
Feel free to add variables though, as the possibility always exists I missed somehting rather important.
Lemme take a shot at this.
You also might consider some dedicated cc units of your own, such as flayed ones or wraiths. They will help your phase out number, too.
Good luck, and post a list in the army list sub-forum for more detailed advice!
The core, of course, consists of Warriors. Still I'm not sure about the number, 20 or 30? I think it would be quite fair to assume that the number of 'Necrons' will be sufficient in case of 20 Warriors and not including both a Monolith and a C'Tan. The Objective games, however, could end in a loss or draw rather common because of only 2 claimers.
Assuming 20 Warrior's, that will be 24% of a 1500 Pt army.
On second thought, I believe decreasing the threat of an assault can be combined with anti-assault strategy's, the Monolith suits the job. So including at least one gives a 1500 Pt army a considerable advantage in 1.) Making a full-scale assault costly (due to Gaus Flux Arc/Pie Plates) and 2.) Making a full-scale assault even more costly the turn after since at least one whole squad will rapid fire after re-emerging. In addition to this strategy, would it be wise to deploy 1 or 2 Tomb Spyder's? They will support a nearby Warrior squad in distress and possibly end an assault more quickly.
Including 1 Monolith and 2 Spyder's would cost 23% of a 1500 Pt army.
Now, diversity and Destroyers. Since Destroyers are a necassary addition to a 1500 Pt army, after the previous points there isn't much room to add even more 'effective' units.
Six Destroyers would sink 20% of a 1500 Pt army.
To diversify and maybe even increase the element of surprise, would Immortals be good? They don't have the speed of Destroyer's but in combination with a Lord and Veil they are mobile. Five Immortals are the minimum for a unit and with the Deepstrike rules in mind, a small squad might not even be too bad. So assuming we'd add a Necron Lord with a Veil of Darkness and 5 Immortals, this would cost 20% of a 1500 Pt army.
Finally, I'd like to have an answer on board to bad, multiple-wound, high-toughness creatures and AV of 13/14. It just doesn't seem right to have a shooty army of immortal and soulless robots without the possibility to decently destroy tanks and MC's. The moment glancing hits could no longer destroy vehicles, the Necron army changed.
According to my calculation so far, there is 13% of 1500 Pt left to spend. Conveniently enough, to full fill this last part, 3 Heavy Destroyer's are exactly 13% of 1500 Pt.
In short, this would mean that 40% of the points is sinked in diversity and mobile firepower. 24% is the main force and objective claimers and 36% takes care of Tanks/MC's and lends support to the core, if and when being assaulted.
Considering these numbers and the number of different units, I guess this would be a fun army to play, although 24% of a 1500 Pt game in Objective Missions seems kind of a bad weighted probability.
As far as the "lone wolf" thing goes there are a number of units/models out there that are often seen as doing this and doing it well. CSM would seem to have the most but having not played against the new Marine codex I can't say anything about that.
You have to remember that you cannot always rely on being able to teleport your warriors out of assault on your turn. Most CC oriented units will tear a squad apart on the turn they hit(Genestealers being the most obvious culprit, but Hormagaunts and others can as well) and thus the usual idea of three groups of 10 warriors.
Otherwise I'm rather interested in how your list turns out. If you use it please let us know how it works.
The optimal squad size for destroyers 4 - it is the best size for cost versus effectiveness. Ultimately as little as 4 destroyers can be used in a force (or none at all!), but I would never use 3 in a squad unless you are actually running multiple squads.
Dealing with heavy tanks or MC's will always bee a problem for necrons - it can be done but not cheaply. I mostly suggest either running lots of heavy destroyers and completely skip normal destroyers ( warriors and immortals do a good enough job) or head down the tombspyder or C'tan route. If you are particularly brave pariahs make excellent anti-tank (average armour pen. of 12) though speed and cost are an issue.
Diversity wise you can do an awful lot with the necron list once you start to understand how awesome flayed ones are - being as "cheap" as warriors and a viable CC choice makes them highly valauble - even if they linger about in smallish squads near your warriors to provide some protection.
The gaze of flame also becomes very useful on lords - though don't try and tank an assault by a specialist.
Completely skipping Destroyers in favor of Heavy Destroyers seems cost ineffective. Because Destroyers make excellent infantry sweepers and add considerable speed and mobility (at a lower cost).
I'm now building a list with 3 Troop choices (of 10). The only thing I don't like about it, is that the first thing I'd drop are the Heavy Destroyers. And skipping Destroyers in favor of Heavy Destroyers seems kind of a bad trade. Moreover, they serve completely different purposess and Destroyers have a great and necessary purpose.