Welcome to Librarium Online!
So I'm looking at redesigning my 'Nids force. Right now it's full of Genestealers and Fexes, but I'm looking at improving it to make it a bit more versatile. I'm mostly interested in the survivability of them, and trying to keep them alive for as long as possible. As far as I can see, I have three basic options to doing this -
1) Using gaunts as a screen and to block lanes of fire. This costs me Genestealer slots.
2) Extended Carapace. Saves versus basic arms fire is nice.
3) Scuttlers. The sooner in Close Combat, the safer they'll be.
I'm looking for the most versatile and effecient combination of these three. I think I've already decided to run two units of Hormies, mostly because I like the models and they're not completely useless like Spinegaunts, so that's already a given. Mainly I'm deciding between Scuttlers and EC.
I did some quick numbers, and against Bolters you get the best effect if you have both of them. Against anything with an AP4 or better, however, you have much higher survivability rates if you go with Scuttlers and no EC. (I can supply the math if anyone is really interested in it).
Anyone have opinions on the subject? Has anyone actually tried the 23 point Genestealer against multiple enemies and judged how they fare against other versions? I'm thinking adding on the Scuttlers may be worth the extra points.
Of course, a thought occurs to me - by doing so, you end up moving the Genes ahead of the Hormies, defeating their purpose. So option #3 and #1 are not good to mix, are they?
They can be, if you make the hormagaunts a more intimidating / inviting target by taking larger than normal broods (perhaps up to maximum size) and not even attempting to keep them in cover (while making sure to keep the genestealers behind every rock on the battlefield, where possible). I find large broods can, on occasion, draw more fire than expected simply because there are a lot of targets (and nobody likes being outnumbered 4:1 in CC).Originally Posted by Caluin
Hey, Caluin, long time no type. Anyway, as you might remember I am a huge proponent of EC on 'Stealers. I think that is madatory. As to the scuttlers thing, I've never used it. Correct me if I'm wrong, (I don't have my codex here and I don't play as much any more), but with the Hormie leaping thingie don't they get an extended charge of some kind. doesn't this mean that any surviving 'Stealers and Hormies will be hitting your opponents line at the same time? If so, you could hit their line dead centre, crack it and roll it up, mighty quick. I never thought of this one, (I ussually only take EC for my 'Stealers). Just think, 36ish "stealers and 48is Hormies hitting the bad guys all at the same time, (around turn 2). Can you say Chunky Salsa time? Could work.
As to the Termie screen, I'm pretty Meh ish on that one. It works, but, not grea, I find. I generally take 2 broods of Hormies, (improved I), 2 broods of 'Stealers, (EC), and 2 BIG broods of Spinies, (nekid). I find that if I can get half of those units into my opponents line, it's game over. Especially if my winged Hive Tyrant and leaping Warriors are in the area.
Have fun and good luck.
A little pain never hurt anyone - Larry
EC and scuttler are a deadly combo. I agree with Hersh about EC being mandatory but scuttlers is more situational. It makes them cost almost as much as a Grey Knight so their loss is defenitley more felt. But if you want to use some tactics outside of screening your stealers with your fexes than scuttlers can open up some doors. First is that in escalation scuttling stealers own. Second, if you use cover properly, it can get them into CC unharmed as much as a turn earlier. I don't put scuttlers on all my stealers, but the ones I do scertainly don't disapoint me. However, like most units in 40K, if you don't have many units to support those stealers they are likley to die quick. Thus fater units like hormies and flying warriors can get in, clog firing lanes and provide distraction, whith your scuttling stealer only a turn (if that) behind to destroy any enemy.
"Dare to be Naive"
If someone helps you, or you just like what they say, rep them
It seems like you should just mix and match to get the most effective combo. If you have already resigned to bringing two squads of hormies, that leaves you with 4 squads of stealers. If you give two squads scuttlers and EC, and leave the other naked I think you leave your opponent in a nasty spot. First they have to worry about the hormies because they are going to get there quickly and have the abillity to shift direction and take on just about any target because of the large charge range, Next they have tough stealers running down thier throat that will get a save verses most of their guns, and finally they have stealers that will drop like paper who are going to arrive late in the fight.
So your opponent is left with choices
1) shoot the most versitile unit that is coming my way
2) shoot the toughest and most surviveable unit
3) shoot the two closest threats and get hit by a near full squad of very deadly stealers.
those options sound really really bad.
I think spinegaunts and stealers go really well together. For example in my last game I charged an SM squad with some gaunts and stealers. Of course the gaunts did nothing and the stealers chewed up the marines, but what makes the gaunts really useful is what happened after. I wiped out the squad and was not able to consolodate into any other, so for my consolodation move I sorrounded the genestealers with a protective layer of spinegaunts. In my opponents round he was forced to send his furious-charging veteran squad into my gaunts, who where wiped out but protected the stealers!
I have used stealers with extended carapice and scuttle since the codex came out, I have had over a dozen battles with them, mostly Marines (Blood angels and wolves) and a couple of Eldar battles. by far the best units have been the stealers, they have really performed amazingly well, compared to 3rd edition with the stupid infiltrate and 5+ save they are so much easier to keep alive and get into CC. If you want to keep them alive I honestly dont think another biomorph fit is an option.Originally Posted by Caluin
I simply would not drop either of the biomorphs, the tactical advantage offered by the free move after everyone has deployed is just so valuable, just being able to deploy the stealers near cover and then use the free move to get into the cover for instance, with fleet of claw and extended car its practically guaranteed that the majority of the stealers are going to get into combat even if they are shot at.
The reduced time exposed to fire and the improved save is a potent combination and when supported by other fast nids such as winged Tyrant and Warriors and Hormies they are nearly impossible to stop getting to the lines of the opponents list.The simple fact is most scenarios are max 24" between armies (with a lot at 18") you can deploy the Stealers at 24" get a free 6"move and if you get 1st turn you get 6" move possible 6"FOC move and that leaves 6" to cover next turn, obviously this has to be done sensibly if you can move within 13" and get into cover it makes more sense than getting into 6" range with no cover and get shot to pieces, but the sheer amount of board the Stealer can cover with scuttle and FOC makes it a formidable weapon and it allows so much flexibilty.
23 pts may sound a lot but the simple fact that they will get into combat more than makes up for the cost, because as soon as they get into CC they will destroy anything they touch and make the points back, expensive is only relevent if they dont perform, if they get to do what they do best 23 pts is cheap. If one stealer kills two basic marines (which they do in their sleep) they have made the points back, plus they can kill or destroy anything (apart from Monoliths) even Landraiders get scared when they see stealers.
In 2000pts I always take 3 units of Hormies in units of 10 with they can keep up with the stealers and are the perfect screen for them, I usually try to rush the hormies in and then hit another unit with stealers, this means that the possibilitie for other units shooting my stealers when they win the CC is reduced.
Thats the only problem with stealers is they are so goddam efficient at killing that you can be left high and dry when you win the CC, this is why support is so important, the combined attack on a lot of fronts with the fast untis makes it less likely that the Stealers will be shot up if they are left standing in the enemy lines after a successful combat.
Also this is why i never take scything talons, sure it looks attaractive an extra 12 attacks but it can often work against the stealers, its better to have the Stealers stay in CC for a couple of turns and thats where the 4+ is worth it as well, the save in CC as well as against shooting.
Another thing I do is hit units with stealers and maybe a unit of Hormies or Warriors, this means that even if the opponent removes all the models the stealers kill and this leaves the stealers out of CC the other unit will usually still be in CC with em, meaning no rapid fire etc and the CC usually blocks a lot of LOS to the stealers.
My list is very very CC orientated and I really think stealers at 23pts a shot only really perform well in this form of list (CC orientated), if your going to take Stealers in a more balanced list, take more Hormies and probaly go for the ext carapice option and use them in a supporting role, coming into CC around the third turn after the enemy has been softned up by shooting and the Hormies are engaged.
I take 30 plus stealers and a Broodlord with retinue, but this only works in a list that is geared to total support of the stealer component and thats how my list is tailored.
It seems however that your wanting to keep the stealers, but are you keeping the fexes? because they are a big points sink, which I firmly believe is better spent on fast units to support the Stealers, my advice is to take at least 3 units of hormies and think about other untis to support them, my list is in the tyranid army list section, take a look it may give you some ideas, I am currently testing a 4 devorer winged tyrant and it works well, I am not saying use a list like mine but I will say that I have not played a game yet where the stealers have taken significant casualties from shooting, so use the basic speed set up but maybe with some shooting (if you prefer shooty) with maybe shooty Warriors and a single Carnie with a devourer tyrant, may offer you some options.
Sorry for the length of post but I hope it helps in some way.
Edit, one last point you mentioned the Hormies outrunning the Stealers, well I have found that with scuttle and the FOC move of the stealers, this really does not happen, they tend to hit the lines together in the second turn most games in a nice front of death.
Last edited by Rikimaru; April 24th, 2006 at 18:38.
I'm not a fan of Spinegaunts. While I realize that one of the essential parts of 'Nid tactics is throw away units, I really can't bring myself to pay for something that has the only purpose of dying. I'd rather make my more effective units more resilient, such as giving Genes more protection. Such as through Scuttlers.
Hormies I like because they can hold their own against most troop types, including marines. Though, I guess I'm not so adamant on having them as I mentioned - I just want a little variety in the list other than six squads of Genes. I might go for a cheaper route and take Termagaunts instead.
Okay, so we know that EC is pretty much required. So I guess the question boils down to whether Scuttlers is worth spending the points on, or using those points to fund other things. I'm estimating four groups of ten, so 40 of them in all. That's a total difference of 120 points. The thing that worries me is that Scuttlers is a one time thing. It gives a huge benefit right away, but for that price I can take a second Carnifex. What is more effecient in the long run?Aye, keeping the fexes. I have two Gunfexes and one Devilfex now, and at the moment it's either a second Devilfex or Scuttlers for the Stealers.Originally Posted by rikimaruWhat I meant is that the Genes get ahead of the Hormies on the first turn. After scuttlers moves, the Genes will be 18 inches away from CC, while the Hormies are still 24. If the opponent pulls first turn, that means they don't have to take target priority tests to shoot the Genes. While not a big deal, it's just something to take into consideration.Originally Posted by rikimaru
If you're looking for something fast and distracting... have you considered Gargoyles? They're a serious threat en masse to AV 10 vehicle armor, and those bio-plasma attacks are deadly in close combat. They also have the speed to keep up with (and maybe even outpace) your genestealers, which means that the stealers and gargoyles would both hit the enemy lines on turn two.
You still have the problem of outdistancing your lines before turn 1, but if you infiltrate a small impaler or strangler brood forward, then the genestealers still might not be the closest targets.
Well that's not a problem, Cal. You're opponent doesn't need to take a target priority test, because of Shoot the Big Ones. If you don't take scuttle, all that means in my eyes is that you're unlikely to get a 2nd turn charge. But is a good thing?
You could fit in an extra Genestealer for every 4th or 5th one you have now, and they could mop up any resistance that is still there after the horde of Hormies reaches it. In my games, I use large broods of gaunts, and if they get counter-charged, you've still got some (very hard) units to counter-counter-charge.