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It seems like more and more I'm seeing 4 Trueborn with blasters in a venom with 2nd SC as the mandatory elite slot chosen. This roughly comes out to 173 points. So lets talk about this build. You probably want to move 12 inches forward get 2 inch disembark and destroy a transport. Next you sick your venom's shots on the squad thats inside. Let's say it's a 10 man marine squad sitting in a rhino. Chances are you pop open the rhino. Even if you completely destroy the vehicle you kill 1.66. Then you shoot the venom and kill 1.33 with SC. So total 1 dead rhino and 3 dead marines. Now SM return fire from rapid fire range. SM get 14 shots, so 6.22 wounds. If you are lucky enough to be in cover thats about 3.11 dead trueborn. Your last trueborn is probably running for the hills.
I'm starting to wonder if this really is the better option. Considering 5 trueborn (2 w DL) in 4++ Cover from the beginning with a Raider with FF. Your enemy has 2 different targets to kill. The cost is 180 points for 3 DL that can hit from 36 inches away. Your enemy wont be in rapid fire range for 2-3 turns. So you have a much higher survivability. If you centrally locate your Trueborn and place objectives close you can really make sure this guy will be able to shoot most of the game. Plus you can move the raider as needed to find better positions as well as screen and block enemy line of sight
Just my two cents.
What you've shown is that isolated from the rest of the army blaster trueborn cant take on large marine squads. We knew this. The job of them is not to do a suicidal rush towards transports turn 1 but to stay safe for a turn then hit the enemy from inside a combat speed venom turn 2.
I bet a ravager with 3 dark lances would die a similar fate if used this way.
IG Best Gen 1st overall of 10 DE 4th overall of 6
Eldar 3rd Overall/Best General of 26--2nd Overall/Best General of 7--1st Overall/Best General of 11
I tried them only twice now as mrvegas described and the result was very much the same as he described. Somehow, I have even done less as he described so I knew I was doing something wrong.
I then realized that they way they should be used is as kevin vanrooyen has described - they should be left on the venom if at all possible. Tried that once and they had their ride blown out from under them and they did nothing after that. The unit needs to be in a target saturation strategy and hope your opponent shoots something else. For me, can't do the spam, min/max thing - it is not my style.
I have put 4 trueborns with 4 blasters (min/max but not spammed) on foot in the portal and found I can get them to fire first that way and they can enter cover to fire from easily enough. Tried it again and they did better than the first time and even survived the game running around blasting armor and random transports. One unit is enough for me, I prefer FA units more than elite units when using a portal.
So my bias is actually the method of getting the Trueborn into range, not against the Trueborn themselves. I am not the "spam the venom" type but I understand they will always be a staple in other peoples lists.
"On a hunch, I melted them down and inhaled the fumes and read the dark eldar codex again, AND FOUND A BUNCH OF NEW RULES HIDDEN BEHIND THE OTHER WORDS..." [Gardeth on modelling & interpreting the DE Codex]
The trueborn should never leave the venom and the venom should always move 12" unless the trueborn can shoot, then obviously 6" or sit still, basically they need to be mid field and stay there in their transport.
This unit needs to be in a rush army, where units are there to support it, or more to the point, it support the other units.
If you are using them without the proper style of army they will not perform well, Dark eldar have a lot of synergy in their armies, although some effort was to make this codex more playable to everyone from the last codex, its still a steep learning curve.
In truth I rarely use them, I do like using them in full kabalite armies for theme and they really work well here too.
I usually only bring the 4xSC on a venom option(which is a main stay of my armies), though i'm starting to like the 5 trueborn with 3 blasters and 2 SC's on venom with 2x SC option, this is your anti-marine 10 man squad option, very points heavy at 190pts, however if the skimmer goes down, you now have cover and are in good range with the SC's, but still hold a 18" threat radius with ramaining surviving warrior blasters(lift dead models from blasters first) against tanks, considering that you should be half ways across the table now this is infact very good, giving your opponents tanks little room to move, hopefully causing him to lose LOS shots and force him to get out of your blaster range reducing his shots.bottom line here is making tanks react to you which is good.
I like this option because for a few points more it makes them a decent threat and gives them choices, also the 4+ cover will make them decently tough to shift, hopefully attracting some more shooting away from vital parts of your army, our dead skimmers make excellent cover
Last edited by dizzie; January 10th, 2012 at 20:11.
If you're always worried about crushing the ants beneath you...you won't be able to walk.
This is why I like having a strong CC element in my lists. Trueborn pop transport, Venom shoots contents and then Wyches or Wracks charge contents. Rinse, repeat.
"Is Archon Braigh-Dee going to have to choke a Wych?
Courtesy of Wicky: D.C.S.S.E.P.C.I.C.B.
I can see your point, but for me the Trueblaster squads are there for quantity of Lances, not additional range. People seem to be having a lot of fun trying to kill off my Beast packs these days, plus with the more important squads in the Raiders, and my more conservative use of them, I end up using my Trueblasters to flank up the sides. Whilst there's a much more devastating target in the centre (with 4 Raiders, 2 Beast Packs and 3 Ravagers) the Trueborn aren't concentrated on until they fire their Blasters, so I've usually damaged a couple more tanks per turn when they've been noticed. Before then, they are a nuisance, sure, 12 SC shots is nice, but it doesn't make MEQs crap themselves. Raiders full of Wyches do. As has been said before, it's all about the target saturation.
Thanks for the comments Kwikwag, I guess I have had a really similar experience. Typically my opponents target my blaster trueborn on Turn 1 and Ravagers Turn 2. Needless to say its not hard to pop 2-3 venoms on T1 especially if they are under 24 inches away. Even S4 bolters have a chance to wound our venoms.
So looking at the general advice it seems like everyone who really plays blaster trueborn says keep them in the venom and shoot the enemy T2. So if your goal is to have trueborn pop open vehicles, why would you want to shoot 4 blasters on Turn 2 when you could have shot 3 DL for two turns? For me the DL is a clear winner. First 6 > 4 so I have a higher likelihood of destroying the vehicle. Second the ability to shoot my gun for two turns means I have the potential to destroy 4 vehicles (1 per turn from trueborn and 1 per turn from raider). Granted the likelihood of destroying 4 vehicles is low, killing 1-2 vehicles is probably the avg. Finally I would rather kill something in Turn 1 than Turn 2 since it prevents my opponent from shooting me with that vehicle or moving his troops to a better position.
To be honest, it depends what else is in your army. I run a predominantely gunboat list, so I have plenty of Raiders and Ravagers to deal with tanks, it's as if my Trueborn are almost 'reserves', to keep my anti tank up when I've (enevitably) lost some Ravagers. Plus the Versatility of the Venom Squad is very good, it can be offensive and vape marines should the need occur, unlike the Dark Lance Squad, which has fewer AP2 weapons and few Splinter shots. It's overall more versatile.
Since both squads can take either transport option, I also think it's worth separating it into:
4 w/Blasters (108) vs. 5 w/2 DLs (110)
Venom w/2 SC (65) vs Raider w/FF (70)
Obviously if you want AT a raider is better than a venom, so I'm not sure it's fair to include that in the comparison.
As to whether DLs or Blasters are better, I think that depends a lot on your play style and what's in the rest of your army. I personally am a big fan of disembarking 1st turn to shoot, just make sure you're in cover and no one nearby has a flamer. Once you get good at judging 18" it's not too tricky to stay out of guaranteed rapid fire range either (meaning if the guys in the transport you just shot want to RF you they'll have to leave their crater, and roll difficult terrain and might not make it, and they're moving closer to your assault elements).
With venoms as a big part of my anti infantry, I need to knock people out of their transports ASAP and 4 lance shots are way better than 2 in that regard. Once a squad hits the gound it's probably taking fire from 2 or 3 venoms and maybe a few warrior squads, or it's about to get assaulted by wyches or beasts. Basically being able to do a lot of damage early is more important to me than sustained damage over 6 turns.
The meat things seek to destroy ourselves. They hunt us as we hunt them but they are weak and uncertain. Bring them understanding of the power of ourselves through our strength and their fear. The inferior flesh will be entirely destroyed, all fragments will be smashed. Ourselves will fight to the last, all weak flesh must be consumed
The problem with dark eldar and gap closing is that unless you can garentee they're not shooting back (either by killing them first, burying them in assault elements, or abusing the crap out of vehicle hulls for cover and LOS blocking) is that you die horribly to return fire, counter assaults, etc. And as much as I like our vehicles, they are not going to stand up to return fire any better than the infantry. I guess what it boils down to is that putting a fragile hull full of fragile people close to enemy lines does not seem like the best idea to me.
I usually run a standoff and shoot list. If I'm going to run them, I'm giving them a pair of dark lances and putting them somewhere with a good field of fire. I'll buy the venom and use it for anti infantry fire and to give cover saves to the heavier fire elements behind them. If you're going to go with a straight assault list, then I would rather have one of the other elite choices available over them (wracks, grotesques, incubi, take your pick). It's worked out very well for me so far.