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Ok so I have been toying arround with the Reaver Jetbikes for a few games now... and there has been one major dilema that I have come to. When is it right for this unit to pounce?
At 186 points the 5 man jetbike squad comes in at 30 pts more expensive than their equivalent* eldar jetbike squad... so they are more expensive and less range. But because of drugs and the succubus can do more damage in cc.
5 RJB with succubus, punisher TH. 2 Blasters.
Last game I held them back till about 4rth turn then pounced!... contesting the enemy objective and helping to kill a dread that was there guarding the objective while my wych squad took on the troop that was there. But I felt like I could have pounced sooner... when to know is my question.
Now onto the use of RJB. There are two important reasons why I am taking them in my list, instead of that third wych squad... or last warrior squad. For one, they look cool. And second they are one of the few units that I feel I will have an easier time converting... and I need some presentation points as well as a unit that will breack the monotony of raider, raider raider raider.....
I have decided that I will be using the RJB as a mop up unit, that will swoop in later in the game to take on units that have been softened up by the ravagers, or other shooting, like 3 tac marines (for example)... then I can make the damage against them minimal... in return and hopefully they last till the very end.
So far I have not played with them enough to really get the feel for them. So what do you think?
* the "equivalent" Eldar unit would be 1 warlock with enhance, and 4 bikes with one shuriken cannon. Now, for 32 more points tho they add another bike and another shuriken cannon, making the squad a tad more expensive that the 5 man RJB unit... and with some more long range punch.
First of all, it should be pointed out that RJBs have higher Strength, Weapon Skill, and Ballistic skill then eldar jetbikes. That is on top of having drugs which boost that even further. Second of all, you can't give a reaver succubus a punisher since it is a two-handed weapon. You could give them Agonizer, though.
The trick is that you don't use them to pounce, you use them to hunt. The best use I've gotten out of them is to have them hunt down tanks (it's easy for them to swoop behind or to the side of a tank and hit its soft armor) or to hunt down gun-lines (although this latter use is becoming less common with the prevalence of heavy vehicle lists). Using them to tie up objectives tends to not be their best use. If you want to mire up an objective with an assault, wyches tend to be better for that role. If you want to tie up (or kill) long range infantry units (Heavy weapon squads, Devestators, Fire Warriors, etc) then RBJ tend to be able to get in and out a lot easier then wyches can since they can survive gun-fire easier and can hide behind more terrain (whereas it is difficult to hide a raider). Also, when tank hunting, try to make good use of the "Eldar Jetbike" rule that lets them move 6" in assault even if they aren't actually assaulting. This allows you to do something similar to the Tau battlesuit "Jump Shoot Jump" trick.
You can give them a punisher, DE 5th Edition FAQ changed how the RJB works.
Check the FAQ Toloran. The Reaver rules have been replaced, and you can now put a punisher on a reaver model. – ninja'd by Oogs!
Templarius, I don't have many Reavers, but I do have the same squad you have. I actually use it quite often for the same reasons too. Your strategy for them is very good imo. Striking earlier usually ends with them getting shot down by the extra guns that are still around, or getting swarmed by nearby units in CC. They are very fragile and will fall quickly after they strike, so making sure there are no threats that survive continues to be your best bet.
Make the most use of the Reaver Succubus' high strength by targeting defensive units, while avoiding squads with lots of models & attacks. So targeting other bike or nurgle units is a best-case scenario. But you can use JSJ to your advantage by carefully examining the battlefield for terrain you can exploit. Place down large solid pieces of terrain if you can so that your jetbikes (and other units) can avoid taking shots or being charged.
Also one thing that is easy to forget is that Reavers have relentless, so you should be taking pot shots at 24" while waiting for the turn to strike (and if you don't need to turbo boost them). It's not much firepower, but every bit helps.
I actually tend to add a Haemonculus to the unit who has: RJB, destructor, scissorhand, shadow field. He sometimes joins with them and gobbles up some wounds with his SF, and sometimes I just boost him nearby my Reavers to draw off some of the shots. Of course, my tactics here are dependent on the mission; but anyway, I've found the Haemonculus to be a great way to spend 105 pts to help soften up targets before the Reavers finish them off – or just to run interference by spraying one squad with acid while a nearby unit gets bashed by a punisher.
One last thing: I often take the Goblet of Spite on my Reavers instead of another Wych squad. I find the Reavers rely more on their offense and need the dependable accuracy on their attacks.
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I don't think you should compare reavers to eldar jetbikes, they're completely different.
Eldar jetbikes are all about shooting, reavers are both shooty and cc units.
Compare reavers to other DE units:
Wyches: closely same costs, but wyches are better at cc and with their raider, they have higher chances of surviving until they get in cc.
Ravager: costs less than most reaver squads, but survives longer and has more firepower
Raider squad: almost the same mobility but more firepower, no cc, but still mroe survivabilty because of their number and their raider. They cost about the same as a fully equiped reaver squad
A sniper squad costs less than a reaver squad but will survive longer, because they stay at long range and their guns will keep shooting down enemies during most of the battle.
Last 3 units are all longer range a survive longer than reavers.
Reavers are pretty decent both at shooting and in cc, but they cost so much and they're shot down so easily, that's why I only resort to taking them when I have no choice:
Heavy support is full; ravagers and/or talos are cheaper and far more effective any day.
Troops are full; you need these to take objectives and they perform better than reavers in most cases
Elite: I must have at least 2 choices filled (2 wych squads in most cases)
HQ can be minimal or can be full.
I just have no other choice, when you have troops, elite and heavy support full you only have them for extra cc or extra firepower.It all depends on what type fo lsit you're using. If they're all in raiders and need to go into short range ,reavers can move forward on turn 1.Last game I held them back till about 4rth turn then pounced!... contesting the enemy objective and helping to kill a dread that was there guarding the objective while my wych squad took on the troop that was there. But I felt like I could have pounced sooner... when to know is my question.
If the list is medium range to long range with a few or no cc units keep them behind for a few turns and pop up when enemy forces are weakened, like you did.
A common mistake I keep seeing is people moving their reavers forward too soon and they just die fast withtout doing much.That's probably one of the main reasons why most veterans do use reavers, but we add a heamy and /or lord in the unit to make it more powerful.unit that will breack the monotony of raider, raider raider raider.....
Still got plenty of units to break the monotony of raiders...