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Why are necrons so weak in CC? I have 3,400 points of necrons and the more I play with them the more i feel like they have this huge handicap lingering over their heads.
Today I was running 2 1000 point army lists.
1st list had
Lord - Des.Body; Orb; Phase Shifter; Warscythe
I was playing against space marines and I was running around with the lord and wraiths assaulting tactical troops and kicking butt for once in close combat. Which was quite refreshing however the wraiths were doing NO DAMAGE! It was all the Lord doing the damage. Sure the wraiths would get 5 wounds almost every time I assaulted with 9 attacks hitting on 4s wounding on 2s but they never actually wounded anything which was horrible.
Then i got stuck in combat and got charged by a squad bearing a power fist and lost combat by just 1 wound. Forcing me to take a morale check which I failed....and then I got caught in the sweeping advance.
And this is where I just hate how that works for necrons. The whole unit gets destroyed because the Res.Orb doesn't protect you against Sweeping Advance right? And this can happen so easily that it makes you wonder why use them against anything with a decent initiative.
In my 2nd game i had a very similar list as in the 1st.
Lord - Des.Body; Staff of Light; Orb; Lightning Field
Oh this one was one for the books...so I'm facing chaos space marines this time and I particle whip a squad of khorne berserkers and kill a bunch and i turbo boost to get the lord and squad into assault position in turn 2.
Then turn 2 comes and i run in there to assault, i shoot the staff of light kill 2 more berserkers and the monolith also helps out where I brought the squad down to 3 berserkers (1 of which was a champion with power weapon). I assault them with the Lord + Scarabs squad and get completely pwned by the Khorne Berserkers.
I had 7 swarms and 1 lord when i assaulted and they killed 1 scarab swarm by causing 4 wounds on me. The scarabs needed 5s to hit and 5s to wound and essentially they did NOTHING and the Lord who has only I4 barely managed to kill 1 berserker.
I lose combat, fail my morale check and here it comes...sweeping advance! Everyone destroyed yippee!!
By the way just to be clear Lightning Field automatically inflicts a S3 hit per unsaved wound right? Or do I have to roll to 'hit' with every of those extra attacks?
In any case I couldn't believe how easy my unit got owned by just 3 berserkers mainly because they happen to have a higher initiative value. Why on earth doesnt the res.orb protect against this?
Sigh...back to the drawing board.
1. Tyranids - 15,000 pts
2. Chaos Space Marines - 7,100 pts
3. Space Marines - 6,000 pts
I have the same thought with you my friend! Initiative indeed is a crucial part for CC. If the rules in CC would be that the one who charges plays first also then would have been different. Because if you see you will notice for example that necron warriors are marines with low initiative. Maybe in the new codex they will make some add ons helping them with this.
If you want serious close combat capabilities you'll need either Spyders (3 or more) or a C'Tan. Plus we're mostly shooty, so that's fluffy.
Necron Army Building Maxima: Beware of Phase Out
...because it is a 3rd edition codex? Or because when the codex was written CC was done differently? Or because necrons have enver been good at Cc at all?
If you want to be agressive with yoru CC spyders and c'tam are the way to go.
Against marines/aspect heavy eldar/tau a FO wall infront of warriors is a very effective way to keep your warriors alive and kicking (plus terrifying visage works on fearless units).
Against gaunts/guard and orks the FO wall doesn't really work because you are purposefully wasting that AP5 which murders thsoe forces.
Just the fact that Necron troops can take down vehicles and that Necron troops can be brought back to life can be brought back to life is pretty incredible.
It sounds to me as if you want to be able to do whatever you want and then if you make a mistake you want to be able to bring your units back to life. Necrons are just a more shooty army and they shouldn't honestly be able to punch their way through marines who are built to be equally good at range and up close. Just think about the Eldar (and maybe take a lesson from them) know exactly what capabilities your units have and then play to them.
About the wraiths, they also dissapoint me against MEQ's, but if you use more (something like 6 or even 9) they are quite nasty. I once fielded a full necron close combat army and it actualy worked (especialy when your opponent doesn't expect it). Though I don't realy know how good they are against a specialized combat army (Massive khorne bezerker armies, grey knights or chaos daemons for example). But I must admit, necrons don't realy have great close combat units.
There are a few reasons that, in general, Crons suck in CC.
Low Init. Dencent statline otherwise but the Init is crippling.
For things that gave good Init (Wraiths and Flayed Ones) they have no special offensive rules. Rending is necessary on Wraiths.
For Spyders, theyre too damn slow...
However, whack it all together in a CC Cron list and we do have a certain tactical edge that makes the list work quite well
For those who are moaning over the lack of Initiative, remember that in the FAQ the rules for Chronometrons have changed. They now let you roll two dice and discard the lowest when rolling to see if you break away/catch after assaults.
As others have said, you shouldn't be surprised to see the average Necron list performing poorly in cc. They simply weren't built for that. They're a shooty army, as are IG, as are Tau.
It IS possible to make a cc Necron list, but it goes against the fluff a bit, I think, and Necrons are one army that seem to stick to the fluff better than others. They will NEVER be cc monsters, no matter what you do with them. If you want that, go play nids or Orks. You want balance? Play Eldar or marines (either variant).
You seem shocked that three Bezerkers could smoke you? All you really had were scarabs. Yes, the lord helped, but scarabs are NOT very good at killing anything. Never have been. They ARE good at tying up a unit you want to keep out of action but can't kill at the moment. Even then, they need to go after stuff that is known to NOT be good at cc (Tau crisis suits, for example). In case you don't know, Bezerkers are arguably one of the best cc units in the game, right up there with genestealers and harlequins. You wanna beat them? Shoot 'em. Plain and simple. Heck, ONE zerker could take out a lot of 'crons in cc if you're not careful, and scarabs won't stand a chance, not even against ONE of them.
While I don't know this, your example also suggests your scarabs and lord went hunting on their own. You indicated you turbo-boosted to get a Turn 2 charge. What was your hurry? Yes, your Monolith was close by, but what about the rest of your army? I've said it time and again: If you want your Necrons to stay alive, KEEP THEM TOGETHER. They support each other. That's what they're good at.
So what could you have done instead? I wasn't there, so I don't know, but it might have been better to hang back, and use your warriors (or something else) to gauss the stuffing out of the unit. If you don't kill enough 'zerkers, then dash out to meet them at the LAST POSSIBLE SECOND before they hit your warriors. If you're lucky, you'll kill the rest, but more likely the 'zerkers will wipe out your counter-charge unit, leaving them wide open to a fresh salvo from your warriors that will wipe them out for good (a nice benefit of the new 5th edition combat rules).
That's how you SHOULD use scarabs.