Friday, February 25, 2011

Tweaks I came up with late last night

Is this the answer?
I picked a bad time to start posting more, but poop happens.  I may fold under the pressure someday, but day one is not that day.  Instead of buckling like a belt, I'll be pulling my socks up and getting on with it.  Today's post is about the Blood Angels list I play.  I run what is effectively the "Blood Hammer" list that's all over 3++ in various incarnations.  I have some small tweaks to my list, but the core is the same: jump assault troops backed up by missile launchers.

Before you cry "net listing dbag" and throw something heavy at me, there is a bit of explanation.  I ran Devastators back in 3rd to support my Rhino rushing troops, especially as shooting increasingly dominated my lists.  Jump troops should really speak for themselves.  I like mobility and punching people in the face, via the table.  Jump packs make that happen, plus they're in keeping with the Blood Angel character.  I started with the idea of having a heavy jumper element combined with a firebase to support their advance.  I looked around quite a bit before finding the Blood Hammer list, which had everything I wanted.  I wasn't sure about massed missile launchers at first, but they've been the best performers in my games so far, so I guess the internets know something after all.

With that said, it makes plenty of sense that when I go to start tweaking I look nigh-immediately to the Devastators.  First to get the axe are the Sanguinary Guard, but once I start looking around for more points to free up, I find myself looking at those missiles.  I have no good reason for this.  It makes no sense considering I've just pointed out that they're the most effective part of my army.  Yet they are under fire all the same.  I came up with a few lists last night, permutations on a basic theme, and this is what I came up with:

130 - Jump Pack Librarian
180 - 2 x Sanguinary Priest w/ Jump Pack and Power Weapon
235 - Assault squad w/ 2 Meltaguns, Power Fist
235 - as above
275 - 10 Death Company w/ Power Fist, Rhino
220 - Tactical squad w/ Flamer, Missile Launcher, Rhino
210 - Devastator squad w/ 4 Missile Launchers
145 - Baal w/ Heavy Bolter sponsons
120 - Dreadnaught w/Multimelta, Power Fist, Extra Armor

So what am I trying to accomplish?  First, breaking up the missile launcher hegemony.  I have no good reason to do this, and probably make my firebase weaker by subbing in a dread and Baal.  However, I like my Baal and haven't fielded it in forever (to say nothing of my Vindicator), and I'm not sure I've ever used the dread that I've had for many years.  When I started tweaking, I accepted that I probably was going to hurt more than help and that I should be guided by playing the models I wanted to play instead of going for the most effective combination.  This explains the DC.  While they're an iconic Blood Angels unit, probably the Blood Angels unit, they're too unpredictable in this edition, to say nothing of how expensive they are.  I like them though, and have a bunch, so I want to use them sometime.  They're not a bad choice, at least in my eyes, they just aren't the best choice and so get left behind.  The Tactical squad was a driving factor to get me to tweak at all.  I wanted a bit of fire support that could still move around and, most importantly, hold objectives as a scoring unit.  While I haven't gotten bitten by the objective based scenarios yet, it's only a matter of time.  Plus I feel bad playing a Marine army with no Tac squads.

So there it is, my first attempt to mess up a good thing.  There are a few concessions to models I actually own.  In a perfect world I'd probably replace the dread and Baal with a pair of the so-called Rifleman dreads, but since I only have one I decided against the pair.  I'm also not sure GW actually makes twin-linked autocannon arms, so Riflemen may be by conversion only.  Of course I have some bits set aside for that, but that's still a plan and not a solid, usable model.  I know that subbing in the vehicles results in a loss of firepower and less durability, but you have to stretch sometimes.  I'm very happy with the Blood Hammer list and would play it more or less as-is if I were playing in a tournament or something like that, but variety is nice.  Much as I'd like to get a firm grip on a single list, I imagine EV would want to strangle me well before I got truly comfortable with any given list.  Plus I'd want to try something new before I was comfortable with what I had.

To wrap this up before midnight, I don't know that I'll get much painting in over the weekend.  As I mentioned last time, I want to do that last strip of base and get a coat of varnish on the "finished" marines, but beyond that things are in flux.  I'd like to get a couple stock posts together so that I can have something on hand if RL intrudes, but that will take some doing.  I'll keep working this new mongrel list over too, to see what I can come up with.  I love the idea of a big, fat hammer unit (TH/SS termies in a LRC, DC in a Stormraven) but they're just so expensive that I can't justify them in 1750 games.  At least, I can't justify them yet...

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