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I've got a few black reach orks laying around so I thought I'd build and paint up an army. (40 boyz 10 nobz 9 coptas) and I'm needing some help on my first purchases to add to this.
My question is this. Is it better to keep the 10 man squad and throw them in trukks, or beef up to 30 man squads and foot slog it across the board? I need to figure out the best way to go so i don't waste money on vehicles if i don't need them.
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Unfortunately this one is a big "it depends".
Each type of unit has its advantages. Trukk boyz can make it across the table very quickly - in some cases even fast enough to pull off a first-turn charge, but at any rate much faster than a unit of boyz on foot. Trukks have two big disadvantages to keep in mind, though. First, they're the most flimsy transport in the game. AV10 can be popped by massed bolter fire, or dealt with easily with support weapons, and true anti-tank weapons will make mincemeat of it.
All too often, that means your canny opponents will concentrate their anti-tank fire on your trukk(s) early in the battle, often before your first turn, and slag them. If you're lucky they'll merely be immobilized or get a kareen/krunch result, and your 12-ork unit will have to foot-slog it anyway; if you're unlucky it'll go off like a bomb in the middle of your formation and do a bunch of wounds to the riders and surrounding units. There are no defensive upgrades you can take that will make this result less likely, unless you have a friendly Big Mek with Kustom Force Field nearby. (But a trukk is generally too wimpy a transport to devote to moving your KFF Mek around!) And unlike Dark Eldar skimmer transports, you can't turbo-boost for a cover save. To a degree, you might be able to drive into cover or out of lines of sight, but that will slow down your trukks...
The second problem is the transport capacity. 12 regular ork boyz don't really have a lot of staying power. Taking even a few wounds will knock them out of fearless (and taking a lot will mean you either run when you break, or No Retreat will kill most of the unit off!) They'll work fine against light units like artillery, against combat-squadded Marines (that aren't assault marines!), and for knocking out a key vehicle or two. But a bigger squad can be a lot more potent.
Footslogging isn't necessarily the answer, though. Orks aren't fast, they can get hung up in terrain, and they're a really attractive target for blast weapons. Furthermore, it can be bloody hard to maneuver a unit that big around ruins, blocking tanks, etc. But eh, at least it's free, and against lists that focus too much on one-shot heavy anti-tank, a lot of footsloggin' boyz will carry the day.
Pretty much the worst thing you can do is only take one trukk. You can safely assume EVERYONE will have enough anti-tank to take out one. Having two or three spreads them out, and if you have a whole lot of vehicles, that increases each trukk's chances of making it through (especially if you also have, say, battlewagons, kans, buggies, and other things which the enemy will be worried about!)
There isn't an obvious "best way". If you're worried about buying units you won't use, then before you stock up, you need to sit down and decide what kind of army list you think you're interested in. Kan wall? Lots of vehicles? Green Tide? Once you're there it's pretty easy.
I've been running a 2k list with 4 trucks, a battlewagon, 2 warbuggies and 6 kills kans as my armor and it has been doing amazingly well for a long time. I find that the flimsyness of the Trukks is EASILY outweighed by my ability to swarm forward with amazing speed.
Also, buy rams. The ability to tank shock enemies around the board as you please is an amazing thing. Ramming is okay, but it's often a one shot type of thing. :p
Some local ork players at my shop like to sort of mix and match to try and overwhelm the opponent - two squads of 60 orks and four squads of orks in trukks. The effectiveness of this has seemed to be good - unless the opponent runs droppods.
IMO keep the boyz mobz maxed out and stick your Nobz in the Trukk
The truck is going to die, just a matter of time. So I would use it to ferry the Nobz into close combat and slog big units of boyz across the board.
Compare how many dice you toss with 12 boyz to how many you get with 20 or 30!
Interestingly enough, I find that if a trukk doesn't die in the initial first shots, it'll survive the entire game...mainly because most opponents ignore it once the cargo has been dropped off.The truck is going to die, just a matter of time.Well you'd never just run a bare group of boyz. They'd be behind a kan wall, or a line of grotz, a KFF, or you'd have 100+ of them.The amount of dice 30 orks can throw doesn't matter when only 6 of them reach the opponent. :p
Some good points chaps, and ones that I have been making for ages much to the chagrin of most Ork players, who often hate to hear debate on their favourite subject of transports for the Boyz. It's nice to see how many good ladz are on the same wavelengf! I personally throw four 30-Boy mobs forward behind two Grot screens and take template pressure away by putting an additional screen of massed bikes and buggies down a flank. I have no need for Trukks at all because so many Boyz always trap an enemy in their corner and make mincemeat of them. That's about twenty small vehicles and 150 Boyz for 1500 points!
A suspicious alternative is to field three basic Battlewagons (20-Boy carry cap, open topped and up to five S8 assault weapons mounted!) in order to get a few screening Boyz ('Ard Boy Shootaz usually for the save as well as the number of ranged and assault dice they still chuck about) in front of a fast-moving T3 enemy like Eldar. They're still Fearless, the numbers ensure that they last longer and the thought of being assaulted from an open-topped wagon often causes confusion in anyone's list, especially if they're Tankbustaz!
Sixty 4+ save Boyz from three FA14 Battlewagons each with five S8 assault weapons? With a character like Ghazhgkull? Wholly unacceptable! On the other hand, Trukks en masse as part of a huge Kult of Speed fluff list is often good fun. Lots of Battlewagons, Bikes, Koptaz, Buggies, Kans and other fast-moving madness can give opponents like Guard and Tyranids heart attacks because of all the shooting dice that hit them first. The only let-down is the cash expense of such models. The ultimate tick in the box is chucking out thirty-plus motorz in an Apocalypse Kult of Speed list that causes even Grey Knights to reach for a change of underpants.
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A few big issues with running all guys on foot is mobility. The game can often flow so that you have to get your guys 20-30'' in a turn or two or else you lose the game. This can happen no matter how good your tactics are based on a few bad rolls. With a trukk army, you are able to more effectively move to the flow of battle, and to hit opponents weaknesses.