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Hello again servants of the Star Gods!
Our final conclusive week in relevance to the Necron Lords. Then on to darker and more cruel things.
A startling aspect of the Necron hordes is their ability to utilize true teleportation technology actively on the battlefield. Charging lines of Chaos Space Marines or hormagaunts will hit enemy lines, and suddenly find themself alone in a circle of silent Warriors. Rear line gunnery positions will be cut off from the front line suddenly by the appearance of the enemy. Eldar rangers find themselves just about to safely retrieve an important artifact, only to be gunned down and replaced by squads of the silent mechanical dead. Every time starts and ends with twisting black clouds of shadowy gravecloth, and none have discovered how this occurs.
Notably the Veil of Darkness has many uses, and can make or break an entire game. An extremely powerful piece of wargear, it gives something to a Necron infantry force that it would not otherwise have; Speed. The ability to take an entire unit and rush it from one part of the board to another is a wondrous ability. This power of course, comes with responsibility. The dangers of Deep Striking make constant teleportation highly dangerous, scattering mishaps can end in the loss of a unit, or put them far out and away from the protection of the phalanx, or scatter into charge range. At the same time it can save units from being stuck in prolonged combat, or from being charged in the first place.
Truly the Veil of Darkness has spawned it's own tactic. The Flying Circus. Which, in review, is a Necron lord with veil (orb optional) and an Immortal unit. Used as a tactical strike team against priority targets in the enemy force.
So Necrons. How do you use a Veil of Darkness? What are your best and worst experiences with this double edged sword?
I used it when I first started necrons, then I stopped. I only used it with Immortals for the circus. However, after doing the numbers I found Destroyers far more useful than immortals. I've been fielding my full 10 destroyers to devastating results (we know 15 is just nasty!).
Also, as a means of helping squads escape CC, well...that's what I use my 1-2 monoliths for. Hence, the VoD has fallen off my desirable list.
FYI, I do field immortals still, but just slog 2 squads of 5 along the warriors on top of the 10 destroyers.
"There is only do, or do not. There is no try." - Yoda
I played against Necrons a lot and keep being astonished by how maneuverable an army they actually are. Many units that are or move as jetbikes, monoliths that can teleport and the famous veil of darkness.
I agree with Dark Trainer that destroyers are a very fine unit - certainly one of the very best in the whole game! - but I do not agree that they fully substitute a veil. Well-hidden indirect firing weapon platforms can be kept safe even from the fast-moving far-shooting destroyers while a veil will find and kill them whereever they are.
I have seen it being used with warriors, immortals and even destroyers. Mostly either to target and destroy high-impact enemy weaponry in the enemy firebase (basilisks, heavy weapons teams, whirlwinds...) or to pull the squad from combat into safety.
The latter is especially mean if done in combination with a Monolith against a large MEQ unit. Since the lord used the veil the monolith is still eligible to shoot the particle whip, and since the enemy squad has been engaged in an assault just seconds ago they will not be spread out but stand tightly packed without cover, all of them easily fitting under the blast template. There goes a squad of Space Marines!
If you are worried about scattering somewhere unsafe have a look at my deep-strike scatter odds breakdown here (Mathhammer - the risks of deep-striking). It will give you an idea of what spot to target in order to quite safely stay clear of any danger zones (impassable terrain, assault range of enemy squads, etc...).
5th edition Space Marine librarians have a similar power with the additional risk of losing a model every time the distance dice of the scatter roll show up with the same number (every sixth time on average) no matter if you actually scatter or roll a hit symbol.
Nonetheless is this power made use of. No wonder, as it bears great potential!
Yeah, the scatter potential is a gamble. I admit I like the "danger" factor a little, but the idea of my 7 immortals + lord scattering off the table or into a rock is not fun. For me, there's usually no "safe" way to do that unless you want to be away from the action, and I make it a goal not to have to move from where you landed, as you often only have one good chance at getting the drop on the enemy. After that, they know that 7 heavy bolters are bearing down, and they react appropriately.
Course, one day I made two BIG mistakes against an Eldar player that cost me all of that unit. I popped up in range of both his dark reapers and Eldrad (the first mistake). I picked Eldrad and opened up. Did nicely, but wiped out all but ONE wound, so he was still kicking. Unfortunately, I FORGOT to shoot with the lord's staff of light! D'oh! BIG mistake, as I coulda finished him off.
Instead, He doomed my unit, guided the reapers, and, well, need I go on? It was not pretty. Course, I got revenge on the rest of his army, and by the end of the game my Deceiver had eaten Eldrad alive, but still... don't deep-strike close enough that you're gonna take that many return hits. These guys are not terminators. They can't take too much punishment. Also, NEVER forget that your lord can fire a weapon of his own, unless you've upgraded. That last little poke might be just what you need to knock out that pesky unit.
Risks aside, they're a great unit to keep the opponent guessing. I spent one game hopping all over the battlefield harassing the other player.
Whoa I just realized how long it's been since I used the Veil. Kinda been trying out new things.
Back when I first starting playing, VoD was the only way for me to get within firing range of my friend's imperial guard lines before turn 4. Long tables back then, it was rough. So it started with VoDing Warriors and a Lord behind his lines. Eventually I picked up some Immortals and became a stern believer in Flying Circus.
Most times the Circus has given me some pretty good plays, really smashing up my enemy and opening up with 20 shots from angles they hadn't defended from. Every so often though, I'd make a bad placement, or scatter funny. One game I put myself behind a dread to reap it's soft fleshy rear armor, but ended up only being able to shoot with two immortals, and did nothing. Next turn saw Storm troopers (this was against DHunters) plasma gunning me, and the dread smashing my lord to bits in CC. Thank the C'tan I brought my res orb! Later in that game the squad scattered 11 inches off the board trying to hit a flank shot. ><
Another trick I learned with VoD, great against CC armies, is to let your opponent hit around 18-12 inches away, then VoD over to another part of the board, giving you another 18-24" to work with shooting my other warrior squads. Unfortunately the old "you charged me I'm just gonna teleport out" doesn't work like it used to.
Nowadays a dedicated close combat unit will force such a heavily modified morale test that you are almost bound to fail it, and since majority-Is are compared instead of highest the lord in the squad doesn't help very much - you will most certainly get sweeped, leaving your models dead for sure.
But veiling still can do a lot of good and win you games. Just be careful around very assaulty units and pick your target location wisely.
Personally If I use VOD and Immortals I do so in a squad of 10 and teleport them roughly 18 inches behind and to to the side of the the target and also 12 inches from table edge.
I'm lucky in that my estimating of range is usually accurate to within 1/2 an inch,(guess its my electrical background)LOL.
When I used smaller units of immortals I tend to find that they didnt last the enemy shooting phase let alone assault phase. Giving the Lord a Res Orb does tend to make them last quite well and keep them on table for several turns.
I'd even go so far as to add an extra 5 man squad of immortals to my army along with a tomb Spider to at least give a wiped out unit the chance to WBB. In my books a tomb Spider and 5 immortals extra is more cost effective than another 10 warriors and an upgrade on a second lord and besides the phase out difference works out at a single less necron model.
the only problem with that is it would only work in larger games. you may be able to shoot more but you'd need those extra warriors for objectives.
I play 2 squads of Warriors and protect them as best I can using monoliths and Res Orb to keep them alive until turn 4 or 5 and sieze the 2 easist held objectives then ,by which time my destroyers,immortals and VOD Orb Lord will have inflicted enough damage on opponents to give me a reasonable chance of victory.I often will turboboost my destroyers to contest objectives in the last turn.
all of that works as long as you're not playing another person.
your whole plan falls apart as soon as someone else "turbo boosts" a fast attack into YOUR objective and all you have guarding it is 1 squad of warriors
then suddenly you're down 1 troop which they only have to contest