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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everybody!
It's been a while since I last read "scarab swarms" in "competitive" list ...
Maybe that was salted in 6th (not so much tanks hangin around the battlefields), but I'm wondering if in 7th they will be again a key unit.

I love the idea of "scarab farm", and in my meta (usually play vs. IG, BA and TAU) they often make the difference, tarpitting hideous creatures/big units and crunching vehicles...

So... What you think?
 

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Our Fast Attack Tiers look something like Wraiths > Scarabs = Arcanthrites = Destroyers > Tomb Blades (REALLY need larger squad sizes). They're cheap enough when maxed out at 150 points, and can still wreck vehicles. However, since we can get tank eating elsewhere, you might want to try the Dark Harvest upgraded Scarabs, which get Rending and Shred. I've only used them once and that memory of mine is hazy, so I couldn't tell you how good they actually were.
 

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Our Fast Attack Tiers look something like Wraiths > Scarabs = Arcanthrites = Destroyers > Tomb Blades (REALLY need larger squad sizes). They're cheap enough when maxed out at 150 points, and can still wreck vehicles. However, since we can get tank eating elsewhere, you might want to try the Dark Harvest upgraded Scarabs, which get Rending and Shred. I've only used them once and that memory of mine is hazy, so I couldn't tell you how good they actually were.
I'd have to disagree with that. You can't rate our FA units because they all perform different roles. Scarabs munch vehicles and cover huge distances without being slowed by terrain, but can be wiped out very easily with flamers in shooting/overwatch, or any S6 blast weapon. Destroyers are effective at killing MEQ specialized units (think long fangs/dark reapers) but point their guns at anything else and they don't have the volume of fire or survivability to justify their expensive points costs. Haven't used Heavy D's but necrons don't need help killing vehicles. Tomb Blades are great at destroying horde with particle beamers (using tesla/gauss is just paying for an overpriced immortal imo), but low squad sizes, inability to jink and shoot next turn and expensive defensive upgrades make them squishy and vulnerable. Wraiths do anything you need them to except destroy T8+/AV13+, but are the most costly (and undercosted!) unit in the section.

The reason many people don't take scarabs is because they specialize in destroying vehicles, something our army has no troubles with. A squad of 5 warriors and a stormtek will do 3 glancing hits a turn for only 90 points at under 12" range, which will destroy anything without a save. Basically the reason is, they don't do their job better than warriors do, and since warriors have more versatility, why wouldn't you choose warriors? Plus they get boring. You roll that many dice and all they do is the same thing each game.

The way I have seen them work is as a suicide unit or a farm unit.

Suicide: Take a squad of 10. Deploy them offensively in the middle of your front lines if you have first turn, or directly opposite from the enemy's fattest vehicle if you have 2nd turn. Always move 12", only move forwards. If by the time you get into charge range you have 5 bases left destroy that vehicle. If you have less, use them to tarpit a tactical squad or specialist squad. They are pretty durable in combat thanks to 3W per model. Worst case scenario, you opponent destroys them in a single shot of a large blast weapon, but anything else you destroy a land raider/force it to run away cowardly & tie up something vital.

Farm: Take 3, with 3 spyders. Hide them out of sight and constantly generate 3 bases a turn while using the T6W3 AP2 spyders to threaten off most combat squads from a home objective or similar. Move both squads out turn 4-5 when you should have 10+ bases targeting the scarabs against horde units or vehicles and spyders against vehicles/MC's or units with low model counts. It becomes a very dangerous threat your opponent often forgets about, because you turn a 195 point investment into 300-350 points by turn 5, but a single S6 blast will kill essentially 15 bases if it wipes out all 3 on turn 1 nullifying all that potential.
 

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I'd have to disagree with that. You can't rate our FA units because they all perform different roles. Scarabs munch vehicles and cover huge distances without being slowed by terrain, but can be wiped out very easily with flamers in shooting/overwatch, or any S6 blast weapon. Destroyers are effective at killing MEQ specialized units (think long fangs/dark reapers) but point their guns at anything else and they don't have the volume of fire or survivability to justify their expensive points costs. Haven't used Heavy D's but necrons don't need help killing vehicles. Tomb Blades are great at destroying horde with particle beamers (using tesla/gauss is just paying for an overpriced immortal imo), but low squad sizes, inability to jink and shoot next turn and expensive defensive upgrades make them squishy and vulnerable. Wraiths do anything you need them to except destroy T8+/AV13+, but are the most costly (and undercosted!) unit in the section.

The reason many people don't take scarabs is because they specialize in destroying vehicles, something our army has no troubles with. A squad of 5 warriors and a stormtek will do 3 glancing hits a turn for only 90 points at under 12" range, which will destroy anything without a save. Basically the reason is, they don't do their job better than warriors do, and since warriors have more versatility, why wouldn't you choose warriors? Plus they get boring. You roll that many dice and all they do is the same thing each game.

The way I have seen them work is as a suicide unit or a farm unit.

Suicide: Take a squad of 10. Deploy them offensively in the middle of your front lines if you have first turn, or directly opposite from the enemy's fattest vehicle if you have 2nd turn. Always move 12", only move forwards. If by the time you get into charge range you have 5 bases left destroy that vehicle. If you have less, use them to tarpit a tactical squad or specialist squad. They are pretty durable in combat thanks to 3W per model. Worst case scenario, you opponent destroys them in a single shot of a large blast weapon, but anything else you destroy a land raider/force it to run away cowardly & tie up something vital.

Farm: Take 3, with 3 spyders. Hide them out of sight and constantly generate 3 bases a turn while using the T6W3 AP2 spyders to threaten off most combat squads from a home objective or similar. Move both squads out turn 4-5 when you should have 10+ bases targeting the scarabs against horde units or vehicles and spyders against vehicles/MC's or units with low model counts. It becomes a very dangerous threat your opponent often forgets about, because you turn a 195 point investment into 300-350 points by turn 5, but a single S6 blast will kill essentially 15 bases if it wipes out all 3 on turn 1 nullifying all that potential.
The whole "everything has different roles" is a bad argument since units can overlap. Wraiths can blow up vehicles like Scarabs along with being elite killers AND horde killers. It's why they're on the top. Destroyers put out accurate fire power and are overall durable but still lack the punch of Wraiths, Scarabs are basic tarpits and vehicle chewers, Archanthrites are...there, and then Tomb Blades are just kinda meh compared to everything else. The list works for now until I finalize it, but basically you just avoid Tomb Blades (as fun as the 150 point squad of Particle guys is).
 

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Our Fast Attack Tiers look something like Wraiths > Scarabs = Arcanthrites = Destroyers > Tomb Blades (REALLY need larger squad sizes). They're cheap enough when maxed out at 150 points, and can still wreck vehicles. However, since we can get tank eating elsewhere, you might want to try the Dark Harvest upgraded Scarabs, which get Rending and Shred. I've only used them once and that memory of mine is hazy, so I couldn't tell you how good they actually were.
Two things:

- Dark Harvest Scarabs are not so much an upgrade as a variation. They lose the ability to chew tanks while getting Rending and Shred.
- What makes you put Destroyers ahead of Tomb Blades? Most people consider pie-plate spamming Tomb Blades rather nifty and Destroyers utter crap...
 

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They are a very good unit, second to only the amazing wraiths in our fast attack slot.

In my experience the order is;
Wraiths > Scarabs > Heavy Destroyers > Tomb Blades > Destroyers

Wraiths are just an amazing unit, scarabs are cheap can tie down units or dismantle tanks easily. Heavy destroyers can kite and have ap2 weapons effective against elite units. Tomb Blades can spam blasts effective against mobs/swarms of units. Destroyers are very situational and their biggest drawback is the criminally short range, 24" range means pretty much anything can hit you and your an expensive unit without any defenses like jink, whereas their brothers the Heavy variants can stay safe from most small arms fire by out ranging them.
 

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The whole "everything has different roles" is a bad argument since units can overlap. Wraiths can blow up vehicles like Scarabs along with being elite killers AND horde killers. It's why they're on the top. Destroyers put out accurate fire power and are overall durable but still lack the punch of Wraiths, Scarabs are basic tarpits and vehicle chewers, Archanthrites are...there, and then Tomb Blades are just kinda meh compared to everything else. The list works for now until I finalize it, but basically you just avoid Tomb Blades (as fun as the 150 point squad of Particle guys is).
Yeah, they all kill the same stuff and kill it exactly the same way right? Its turn 5 and the enemy is holding his home base 30" away with 5 tactical marines, but since scarabs, destroyers, wraiths, blades all kill MEQ with ease theres no way hes going to hold that come game end? Oh wait. Wraiths & scarabs can't get there.

Just because all of these units move 12" doesn't mean they do exactly the same thing in the same way. Its about the synergy with everything else. They DO have different roles. You try to build a list using a unit in an unfavorable role and you're gonna have a bad time.
 

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Something I noticed with Scarabs: You don't double wounds from Instant Death on swarms, even if it is a Template or a Blast. So, a Baleflamer (Str 6) will not double wounds on a Scarab Swarm (1 base under the template is 1 Instant Death Wound, not 2). I think this is a change in 7th, or maybe I just never picked up on it in 6th.

For Tomb Blades: these things are invaluable for collecting VPs in MoW missions. Nothing skips around the board like a jet bike, and you should be using their natural jink (+ cover bonus) to keep them surviving as they end every turn on a free objective. Anyone that thinks Tomb Blades are junk is not actually playing the game.
 

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My personal experiences with fast attack:

Tomb Blades: Over all, my pref is Gauss. Why? If I jink, I can still shoot (I just never had great success with the blast weapon to be honest). In 7th, you lose the potential to shoot at all with the blast if you jink.

My use of them is in cover, then I turbo out, enjoy the jink, and often go vehicle hunting after that. I typically run 5 Tomb Blades this way, often in tandem with one unit of Wraiths (they can bail each other out/even out the odds).

Destroyers. Too nerfed for my liking. I even tried sticking a Destroyer lord with them in 6th in defensive games where I was being rushed by superior numbers. I love Destroyers, I just think they are mildly over priced for competitive play. Just my 2 cents.

Wraiths.... man I just had a game I should do a report on. I played against Mech IG and only had 3 Wraiths. The buggers went through a command tank, a punisher, and two Hydras. Such a cool looking model too... I gotta put my second box together!

Scarabs. I agree with the thought of running them one of two ways. Offensive (suicide) or farm, even mini-farm with spyders. But my scarabs are dying like crazy lately with all the 'no cover' stuff in new codexes. There's too much cover denial that comes in the form of templates. My last game I lost 13 Scarab bases in abouth 3-4 shots from the IG player (no saves, double wounding).

I'm considering removing scarabs all together, or just switching to a little suicide unit.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I play 2 "big" (6 or more) scarab units backed by 4-6 spyders (with their blast cannon).
First turn they add 4-6 bases to the front unit, that advance toward big units or big guns. Usually my opponent have to deal with them for the best part of his first turn of fire, and still almost every time I can reach something tasty in assault second turn.
Then, second wave arrives (usually 14+ bases strong) and the real battle begins.
Then again, the spyders join the scarabs in assault...

Run this farm with a DLord WRAITHSTAR and 2-3 Schyte (and maybe a veiltek+immortal unit): you're gonna have your big times... Everything but boring, IMO!

Last time I played against MEC IG (not yet astra militorum... Old codex) scarabs beat the hell out of them... it was REALLY nasty!
 

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Yeah, they all kill the same stuff and kill it exactly the same way right? Its turn 5 and the enemy is holding his home base 30" away with 5 tactical marines, but since scarabs, destroyers, wraiths, blades all kill MEQ with ease theres no way hes going to hold that come game end? Oh wait. Wraiths & scarabs can't get there.

Just because all of these units move 12" doesn't mean they do exactly the same thing in the same way. Its about the synergy with everything else. They DO have different roles. You try to build a list using a unit in an unfavorable role and you're gonna have a bad time.
Wraiths do the job faster and more efficiently on top of being able to handle any target you charge them at. That's not a matter of "different roles". That's a matter of them being better. After that, you merely look at what else the other Fast Attack options can give you.
[MENTION=43632]Polaria[/MENTION] it comes from how Junk is going to work this edition. Tomb Blades are in small numbers, and can't shoot with their best weapon if they're Jinking. They could be fast and secure an objective late game, but I got other means throughout the codex to do it.
 

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Wraiths do the job faster and more efficiently on top of being able to handle any target you charge them at. That's not a matter of "different roles". That's a matter of them being better. After that, you merely look at what else the other Fast Attack options can give you.
There is one thing with Wraiths and Scarabs that you aren't taking into account here. True line-of-sight. I've found out that while Wraiths are pretty damn powerful stats wise the models themselves are damn huge vertically and thus seem to take much more fire than any normal jump infantry. Meanwhile the Scarabs have a lot more wounds per point and can abuse cover to stay out of LOS. Both can be killed easily by bolted (or even lasgun) fire so this is quite important at times.

Plus there is one very nifty little rule with the Swarms: Wounds are not allocated to closest model but one with least wounds left. You can abuse this when getting ready to assault by making sure in movement phase that the model with least wounds left is NOT the closest one... So it can take any flamer hits from Overwatch and your assault distance still stays the same for the roll ;)
 

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Plus there is one very nifty little rule with the Swarms: Wounds are not allocated to closest model but one with least wounds left. You can abuse this when getting ready to assault by making sure in movement phase that the model with least wounds left is NOT the closest one... So it can take any flamer hits from Overwatch and your assault distance still stays the same for the roll ;)
This only happens if there are 2 scarabs equal in distance from the shooting unit, normally defending player gets to choose who takes the wound, but with swarm it's the one with the least number of wounds remaining.
 

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This only happens if there are 2 scarabs equal in distance from the shooting unit, normally defending player gets to choose who takes the wound, but with swarm it's the one with the least number of wounds remaining.
This would be where you are wrong.

Allocate a Wound from the Wound pool to the enemy model closest to the firing unit. (BRB p. 35 Allocate Wounds)

So, no, defender does not get to allocate wounds where-ever he wants. That was way back two editions ago when he could.
 

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This would be where you are wrong. Allocate a Wound from the Wound pool to the enemy model closest to the firing unit. (BRB p. 35 Allocate Wounds) So, no, defender does not get to allocate wounds where-ever he wants. That was way back two editions ago when he could.
Wasn't saying defending player gets to allocate all wounds, only when there are two models with equal distance. Closest model rules. No point giving you page number as the iPad version doesn't match buts the same page. Swarm rules states that the wound allocation u are talking about only happens when again there are two models equal distance from the shooter.
 

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Wasn't saying defending player gets to allocate all wounds, only when there are two models with equal distance. Closest model rules. No point giving you page number as the iPad version doesn't match buts the same page. Swarm rules states that the wound allocation u are talking about only happens when again there are two models equal distance from the shooter.
Ah, so it is. My bad.

Still, Scarabs get shot a lot less than Wraiths simply because the models are so small and built low.
 

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Ah, so it is. My bad.

Still, Scarabs get shot a lot less than Wraiths simply because the models are so small and built low.
Yup been picking them up cheap on fleabay to have a go at a farm list, gonna try my hand at green stuff scarab building too.
 

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There is one thing with Wraiths and Scarabs that you aren't taking into account here. True line-of-sight. I've found out that while Wraiths are pretty damn powerful stats wise the models themselves are damn huge vertically and thus seem to take much more fire than any normal jump infantry. Meanwhile the Scarabs have a lot more wounds per point and can abuse cover to stay out of LOS. Both can be killed easily by bolted (or even lasgun) fire so this is quite important at times.

Plus there is one very nifty little rule with the Swarms: Wounds are not allocated to closest model but one with least wounds left. You can abuse this when getting ready to assault by making sure in movement phase that the model with least wounds left is NOT the closest one... So it can take any flamer hits from Overwatch and your assault distance still stays the same for the roll ;)
True LOS is important, but Scarabs die outside of cover. Wraiths don't need that which them more flexible with which path to take.

I'll be using a 5 man Tomb Blade with Gauss next time I get a game in for a quick objective grab.
 

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At 1850 pts, Tomb Blades with Gauss have been in 90% of my lists (in 6th ed). In 7th they're always there. I think you guys are going to love them. (I play almost exclusively Malestrom though)
 
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