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Ok to go along with last week's (or whenever's) Tank Slayers thread. I will now address my new favorite topic. Assault. Close combat used to be something Necrons could deal with, low initiative is never a good thing, but we were once tough enough to not care. Nowadays, losing our only real protection from being swept off the board has become a thorn in the sides of the necron force. And well, we really need to just figure out how to deal with it.
We 'crons have several, rather nasty close combat units, however they are all very highly specialized. Our old means of escape have become neutralized in many cases. So it becomes more of a preventative case than anything else. Again same sort of format, throw out an idea, give some details on how it is supposed to work, and where it is most effective.
Pre-emptive VoD: One of the best ways to not get charged is to never be in charge range. I've personally begun using the VoD as an escape device JUST before enemy assault troops get in charge range. It gives more tactical flexibility and will generally leave the advancing unit high and dry for some shooting the next turn.
Tomb Spyders: If any of you are surprised by this, shame on you! Spyders are stupendously resilient to even powerful assault units. Not always able to stop really heavy assaulters, like Stealers, terminators or the like, but even assault marines are hard pressed to take one down in a turn. Their counter attacks pack enough punch to make any opponent worry. And quite frankly? I NEVER care if they die. Those nasty rending/ power weapon attacks are much less worrying when they don't affect my phase out.
Stab away! (oh and remember, no exact points costs, or quoting rules from the codex)
Yeah, I'll second the level of utter aggravation that being stuck in CC is! I know they're slow (initiative speaking) and expensive, but I'm willing to give Pariahs a try. I have a couple I'm building now and will be able to play them in about 3 weeks. I'll post my replies once I have more thoughts on that unit.
I also have a handful of (unpainted) Flayed Ones. I think their terrifying visage could work pretty well, provided you're fighting a unit that's susceptible to it. Also, I think that coupled with the Pariah's soulless feature would be amazing, trouble is, it's a trick. My guess is that you could fool someone once or twice with it, but it's not something that's a guaranteed "work" every time. Terminators aren't a trick, they're just monsters through and through, ya know?
I'm also curious about running a Lord with a line of Scarabs and equipping the Lightning Field. It seems that it could work somewhat well against Tyranids or things with a poor save, but again, it's a trick, you need to get the other player to fall for it.
Right now I usually run a Scarab line in front of my warriors to soak up assaults, but smart players will blast the swarms from afar. Be it as it may, that's what I know. Ha, and you wonder why I'm looking to build a 2nd army. Just wait till 2010, we'll be back!
A C'tan specifically the Deceiver is my favorite use of counter assault. He is alot of points but he is a very consistent assault unit for the necron force.
Compared to our other options: Flayed ones, Pariahs, Wraiths who only really are effective against specific types of units most of which aren't assault units which makes them unideal for counter assaulting on top of they're fragility I would recommend these units not to be used for counter assault.
It is very easy when you first start using a Deceiver or C'tan to just aim at one unit and run across the board get stranded and unable to protect your force. Against an assault army you should set up your Deceiver about 6 inches away from your warriors / immortals (destroys can stay out of combat easily) and once the game starts keep him around 12 inches away from your group of foot sloggers so he can play push and pull with the enemy assault units. This creates a really awkward situation for the enemy as they want to be in assault with your warriors immortals etc but there is a Deceiver sitting close by ready to assault them, and with his hit and run type ability you can leave the unit crippled and abandoned inchs away from your firebase. He then can use this ability to attack an assaulting unit, hit and run in they're turn you fire and wipe out the rest of the unit while he goes onto attack another unit. In 4th edition this tactic used to be alot more effective because of consolidation and it was'nt rare in games for the Deceiver to take out more than his points value but he still performs just as well.
Also as Alzer said tomb spyders do a pretty good job for they're point cost at killing a couple marines and tying them up.
Most of my writing probably did'nt really make sense as I just got some teeth pulled and I am still under the effects of the pain killers.
I hope this helped somebody.
counter assault? Well, if you're playing a normal necron list...
Phariahs have a use in counter-assault since they deal scary attacks and maekt he enemy afraid. Also since they're slow and running wastes their shots i' d say they were ideal.
c'tan terrify most opponents, and they can get your units out of combat too.
Monoliths/VoD's can simply pull the charged squad out of combat, and you've got an assault squad with lots of angry necrons around it.
But... why worry about counter-assault? We can make a very effective assault list of our own you know. the best defense is a good offense!