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I was wondering how many scarabs would make the best squad. I usually run 7 or 8 models would make a nice squad because it can lose a few models and still bog down a unit or lower a vehicles armour a couple of points. Any lower than 5 and they usually get shot apart before any real damage is done, but is it better to go up to 9 or 10 models? What do you use for a squad?
in my opinion scarabs are crap, they look great on paper but given both roll types people use them as (tank seekers or bubble wrap).
my scarabs have only ever once made it to a tank, they failed to kill it and then were ultimately destroyed, usually they are destroyed before they even get close to a tank. and why you would spend 150pts to "bubble wrap" a unit by throwing away your scarabs seems like a waste of points to me.
other people will tell you how great they are, so obviously to each their own, good luck out there
Well I rarely take Scarabs without a Spyder anyway, so for each Spyder I take a unit of 3-5 Scarabs (depending on how many points I have spare). If I don't have a Spyder with them, the Scarab unit would usually number about 4-6. Enough to cause adequate damage to a vehicle (or two, if I'm really lucky), but not enough to be a huge loss if they get destroyed before being able to take out a juicy target.
I don't like paying points for a massive (7+ bases) unit of Scarabs, first because of the points, but also because their bases are pretty large and it's difficult to hide big units of large based models. Especially since you have to spread Scarabs out as much as possible to minimise potential blast/template weapon damage.
Finally, I don't know why you're spending 150 points on them! Buy a Spyder and a small unit, then spend the first 2-3 turns producing more Scarabs. Even the Spyder itself is not just there to make more Scarabs. It's a pretty good anti-tank weapon itself (being a monstrous creature and all), and can repair your own vehicles as well. If you think Scarabs are that bad, I suspect you're either really unlucky, have very canny opponents or you're using them wrong.
Last edited by Tzeentch Lord; March 4th, 2012 at 21:40.
"Peace, through superior firepower."
Scarabs need support or they fail easily. They are very, very easy to kill as there are a lot of blasts and templates in most army lists....and a lot of those cause ID (hellhounds and such just laugh at Scarabs).
But for ideal squad size. Probably 5-7 bases and not more than two units. I don't really like scarabs at all as they take up slots where I could be putting Heavy Destroyers or Tomb Blades.
Sadly Scarabs and Wraiths are just so freaking lack-luster in terms of being competitive.
I use a single unit of 10 Scarabs with 3 Spyders in support. Hide the Scarabs behind terrain for the first couple of turns, with the Spyders adding to their number, then launch an all-out assault on turn three. I have had good results with them, allthough I do agree that they die horribly to massed Nemesis weapons and blast markers/templates.
I have also suffered from the little blighters, losing a Land Raider to the Entropic Strike rule before Lucius's Doom Siren and a hail of gunfire from his Terminator buddies wiped out the squad. The Necron player was using them under the new rules for the first time, and only had 10 in his unit. This was not enough to hit in turn one, which is why I hold off the assault run till turn three while building up the reserves with the Spyders.
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I find them to be awesome. I've had them destroy land raiders, baal predators, rhinos, multilas predators and much, much more, usually finishing it off in only one turn of combat. With only 5 bases. Not to mention in one notable game against tyranids, they killed 2 zoanthropes, and a ravener brood before being finished off by a horde of gaunts. Units of 5 or less are just seen as too little to be a threat, though still large enough to be a threat
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I played a couple of games this weekend, using either a pair of spiders and 2 squads of 4 scarabs, or trio of spiders and two squads of 5 (1500 and 2000/3000 point lists respectively). The scarabs were instrumental in holding a draw against an excellent Dark Eldar player, one squad multi-charging a pair of venoms, Duke Siliscus and a haemonculus early on, killing both transports and the haemy, and diverting a wyche squad who had to come and rescue the Duke. The other sqaud and surviving spider tarpitted two more wyche squads and a Chronos for long enough to stop the Wyches from clearing my objective.
In the larger game, one swarm ate an Ironclad Dreadnought and then tarpitted a flanking Marine Bike squad for 5 turns, whilst the other ate a Landspeeder and chased off some Wartraks, and then diverted a large volume of fire and a mob assault away from my lines of Warriors, while the spiders countercharged a large orc mob to rescue the beleagured Phaeron.
End result Win! 11 KP to 5
(on a side note, my reanimation protocols rolls were amazing - The Phaeron's 20 man unit alone must have taken 35+ casualties over the course of the game, and they were still 8 strong by the end - 20 Warrior squads with orb are the way and the future!)
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If you're using them as bubble wrap, three bases works just fine. If they're not moving towards a target, the opponent has to choose: shoot at the unit of Warriors they're guarding with a 4+ cover save, or spend a turn or two to clear away the Scarabs. Even just one turn could mean 150-250 points worth of shooting are dedicated to 45 points worth of 9 wounds. If they don't choose to shoot at the Scarabs, then assaulting units must first fight their way through the swarm -- not that difficult but does tie them up for a turn and leave them vulnerable to return fire. Either scenario is win/win, the former being less valuable unless you have the rest of your list covered, have 45 points to spare, and a fast attack slot open..
If you're using them as anti-tank / fire magnets (the two are synonymous in this regard) then there are a variety of ways to go about it. In particular, 10 bases with 3 Spyders not only functions as a significant number of wounds to chew though, but spreading them out also adds another tactical element to your disposal -- large area board denial. While the Scarabs are occupying a space, opponents cannot, and that can be a huge advantage!
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4,000+ Points Necrons; 3,000+ Points Spacewolves; 4,000+ Points Empire
I have no idea what my records are for these armies, other than everyone massacres my Empire army.