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Looking at the rules for strangle web and spike rifle weapons, which can be found here: click me, I wanted to know how much they improved the performance of basic gaunt squads.
One in every 8 can take them, so the math will be based against MEQs for 8 guys.
Spine gaunts without either weapon.
With a spike rifle
spine fists________________spike rifle
7 shots___________________1 shot
5.25 hits_________________ .5 hits
1.75 wounds______________ .25 wounds
.5888 casualties___________ . 8333333 casualties
Total= .666666casualties, the exact same. Thus we can conclude that spike rifles are better against high toughness guy or even better just off in their own squad. The only advantage is that they will give your gaunts a chance to killing things like carnis, avatars or wraithlords. Not sure if it is worth the extra 10 points though.
Does anyone have a good estimate of how many models a flamer template typically covers? I would like to see how much more effective the strangle web is, but I predict that it is well worth the points.
Originally Posted by The Paint Monkey
Seriously, I wouldn't try fielding them as anything other than a full brood. An opponent who asks to see your list is most likely not going to let the use of "Weapon Mutants" fly (since they no longer exist in 4th edition). If you do field them as "Weapon Mutants" in squads of normally armed Gaunts, be aware that doing so is most likely not tournament legal. It's also a good idea to ask your opponent's permission to field Impaler or Strangler Gaunts, as Games Workshop had every opportunity to add them to the 4th edition Tyranid codex, but opted not to... it's just good sportsmanship to clear them with your opponent before putting them on the table.
I know that many people hold this belief that you can't use them anymore in anything except the whole broods, but I have heard convincing arguements for the legality of being able to use them, aswell as hearing of people using them in tournaments. I have also heard of other people not being able to use them in tournaments as well.
That being said, I know that this is a grey area with many nid players, but since the rules are still out there, and it does say, "using the unmodified codex", I just wanted to take a look at how effective the weapons were.
Originally Posted by The Paint Monkey
And you did a good job of it.
My comments are ment more to help people who aren't aware or who are new, that using them as "weapon mutants" is a gray area.
I personally believe that most of the arguments for their inclusion are rules lawyering (and again, probably won't fly at Rogue Trader tournaments unless you're really persuasive), but since GW didn't change the name of Codex: Tyranids (the way I expect them to change: Codex: "Their Number Is Legion, Their Name Is Death" to Codex: Necrons when they update the Necrons to 4th edition), it is unclear what 'the unmodified Tyranid Codex' actually refers to (since it's not possible to modify the current Tyranids codex). But that's a personal digression and has no real bearing on the effectiveness of Impaler Gaunts (which I love), and Stranglegaunts (which I don't).
My experience says a flamer template will average about 3 models 'hit', but that requires about 3" of seperation between the unit that's shooting and the unit being shot at.
I'm being a bit conservative, because this was against Marines which tend to space out in ways that make them irritating to hit with flamer templates that aren't fired by a Hellhound. I'm also being a little conservative because with a Strangler Brood, you're shooting 8 flamer template weapons a turn.
Last week I ran a full squad in a RTT. 4 man, 60 pt strangle webs. They pinned 2 squads of marines, killing a total of 6 marines, and 4 scouts (that were also pinned) Sure they died in most games, but earned their points.
As to them being split into normal guant squads, I can see the arguement both ways. As it sits now though, I tend to favor the notion that since you can customize gaunts, adding them to a squad is hunky dorry.
You're also usually talking about a 16pt model with a 6+ save. Not too spooky.
Just run 6X4 man squads and infiltrate them, 240pts of infiltrates that can pin and kill DE speeders, vypers, and other open topped vehicle av 10 things really well.
16,000+ of Eldar (only need flyers)
7,000+ of Nids (want heirophant)
6,000+ of Space Marines (need rever titan)
4,400+ of Cygnar (all models for the faction)
1,500+ of Legion (just started)