Monday, April 20, 2015

Maulerfiends, Forgefiends, Soul Grinders, and Defilers in Khorne Daemonkin

I have no love for these daemon machines. It used to be that the only walkers Chaos Space Marines had access to was dreadnaughts and Defilers. Dreadnaughts are another topic; this one is about the big walkers.

With the 6th edition Chaos Space Marines codex Maulerfiends and Forgefiends were added. Soul Grinders were made available as a regular unit, as opposed to an ally, in the Khorne Daemonkin book. The fiends were added to the game around the same time Nemesis dreadknights, Tau Riptides, Eldar Wraithknights, and Space Marine centurions were added tot he game. I believe all of these models were added in response to the warmahordes game adding their collossal type models. Comparing the fiends to their opposition it is quite easy to see that they got the short end of the stick when it comes to creative rule making. All of the other large monstrous creature/walker types outclass the fiend in almost every way. The ones that can't move fast have serious defensive capabilities. I love the defiler model, a huge crab demon that is going to blow you apart and chop up the bits. The fiends and soul grinders look good as well but I don't own any of them yet. Once again, though, these chaos models can't hold a candle to the sleek lines and sheer awesomeness that the looks opposition models have.

The defiler is too expensive, too slow, gets killed too easy, and is trying to do too much stuff at once. For a few more points other factions get better, faster, and stronger models. In eldar's case, for 95 more points they get a toughness 8 gargantuan creature that shoots 2 strength D shots a turn.

The shooty fiend is trash. Too expensive and, depending on options, can overheat and kill itself while also suffering some other negatives I will discuss further down.

The soul gridner is probably the star of the show. For the points it has better front and side armor and, depending on options, can actually shoot decent things, one of them being skyfire. The model looks great also. Once again, however, it is just too slow. Also suffering from a ballistic skill of 3 makes this thing pretty underwhelming. The only thing going for it is the armor 13 and cost compared to these other walkers. When it finally gets to combat it can probably do something, but until then the performance is substandard.

The close combat maulerfiend is the star of the pack. It moves fast, can reduce attacks or blow vehicles up easier, is fairly cheap, and looks good doing it.

The downsides of all of these models make them mediocre. All have ballistic skill/weapon skill 3. Hitting on 4s everywhere with few attacks makes these things pretty anemic. Armor 12 on most of them, with only 3 hull points, makes them one trick ponies. That lucky lascannon shot or the squad with grenades getting an immobilized result or just outright blowing it up really sucks. One lucky shot and the models is toast; 130 plus points to the dead pile or easily avoided. What really makes this hurt is that the equivalent enemy beasties simply take a wound from one of these lucky shots. Take a squad of flesh hounds instead. They will run over the marines, only lose one model to the lascannon shot, and still get an invulnerable save.

Maulerfiends are the only one of these I would consider taking, albeit reluctantly. One thing Khorne Daemonkin have trouble with is vehicles with high rear armor. The maulerfiend is the best response to it. Being that these things are fragile and cracking these tanks in close combat is almost mandatory I would rather take a few melta bombs spread out on sergeants or on a lord.

 If you feel a maulerfiend is necessary, take two of them. Two is one, one is none. To the bin with everything else.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Army progress as of April 19, 2015

Greetings and thanks for viewing this blog.

After being on vacation for the last week I am looking forward to updating this blog.  I have been concentrating on painting some models and I want to get them all knocked out before I buy some more.  I developed a road map on what all I want to buy and it is going to get costly very fast.  Accounting for that I have made it a goal to get all that  I have for this army painted before purchasing more models.  This will allow some saving to accrue and the good amount of model already owned to be nice and painted up.

All last week, this week, and probably a couple more weeks I am focusing on and 8 man blood crusher squad, an extra banner bearer, and my Juggerlord.

The picture for this blog post is my progress so far,  Click here for a larger picture.

After painting that squad up there is the possessed to finish along with a standard blood thirster.  Once those are done I am going to alternate between Flesh hounds and Spawn.

Of the models I need to purchase are as follows:

  • 20 Flesh hounds
  • 5 to 10 spawn
  • 18 Chaos bikers
  • 2 maulerfiends
  • 2 helldrakes
  • 2 skull cannons/blood thrones
  • 24 berzekers/Chaos space marines
For the bikers and berzekers/CSMs I plan on using all of the fogeworld torsos, heads, and shoulder pads while buying the legs/arms/backpack bits off of ebay.  Thankfully I only need two sets of bits because I already have 10 put together but not painted.

I am not too crazy about the maulerfiends and helldrakes but they might be fun in the Khorne Daemonkin codex.  I will post more on them later.

A fun list want to run is what I call "2 is one, one is none":

There are plenty of points to expand to 2000 or trim to 1850.  I would much rather run a slaughtercult but I just can't fit two possessed in there.  I think this list gives a ton of fast moving options that packs a punch and messes with target priority,

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Are possessed really a tax for a slaughtercult?

The general consensus of the intertubes seems to be pretty negative concerning the mandatory inclusion of a unit of Possessed Chaos Space Marines in a Slaughtercult formation of Blood Host detachment.  I do not share these sentiments and here is why.

Yes, they are expensive, yes, they cannot shoot, but I have a hard time seeing these factors as making them so unattractive.  With both Daemon of Khorne and mark of Khorne I think the buff these guys provide is worth it.  Yes, they pay for these marks but never before had Demon of Khorne been available.  Previously if the unit wanted furious charge they would have to purchase a 15 point icon of wrath.  Factoring it all together these guys get furious charge for 10 points cheaper that the Chaos Space Marines codex albeit with the lack of the icon assault result benefits.  They are fearless so don't need it anyways.  

What's more, the icon in the Korne Daemonkin codex is 5 points more expensive and Possessed don't even need the icon; they have all the benefits already built in.

Necessary to the success of this unit is transportation. Options are rhinos and land raiders.  I hate land raiders, especially chaos ones, why oh why can't I get the flamestorm cannon variant?  Lets not go there just yet.

A bare bones unit clocks in at 185 points with a basic rhino.  I am not sure of I want to add anymore models but 5 are sturdy enough.  Run them up the board, flat out, and ram them down some poor soul's throat.  Not much more than that,just point and click.

One tactic I favor is, on the turn before assaulting, disembarking the models without moving the rhino, and in the shooting phase moving the rhino flat out to block line of sight.  This lets our possessed weather the enemy shooting phase, gives opponents a road block to walk and assault around, and if the rhino dies another blood tithe point is earned.  In other cases where the models can actually shoot something be sure and shoot them first before moving the rhinos flat out.  Don't forget their mutation table, strength 6 on the charge, and counter attack.

Thankfully I had some possessed from a long time ago, never assembled and waiting for this moment.  The aesthetics of the models are actually quite pleasing.  Before adding these models to your collection consider a kit bash or the Gal Vorbak from Forgeworld.  Those models are super nice and can double as a very powerful unit in a Word Bearers heresy list.

These guys aren't that bad.  Try them out, run them up, give them feel no pain, and earn those blood tithe points!

The Red Angel

When Forgeworld's Horus Heresy books were announced I was quite elated.  To my great pleasure the first primarch model released was Angron and I had him painted by my good friend, Brad Newman as soon as I could.  The model is shown in this blog post.

Compared to other primarchs Angron seems fairly mediocre.  He is quite the combat monster, but with so many other primarchs having a 3 plus invulnerable save an Angron himself only having a 4 plus invulnerable save I don't think he is going to get very far versus other primarchs.

My preferred delivery method for our beloved primarch is through some sort of drop pod.  I have had a great deal of fun with the Orbital Assault rite of war. I can put Angron right where I want and if he survives the shooting phase whatever he touches next dies.

During the narrative campaign of Texas Wargamescon of 2013 in Austin I delivered the Red Angel in a regular drop pod with his accompanying Praetor, command squad, and an apothecary.  They won the day defeating a squad of Space Wolves and reducing Bjorn the Fell Handed to smoldering junk (It really was quite spectacular, after poor rolling on my part and invul saves I was able to roll two 6's in a row thanks to the venerable roll and exploded Bjorn).  I think he then died to an invisible scimitar jet bike squad which anyone else would have as well.

Another tactic I am working on is delivering Angron with 8 Red Butchers and a Primus Medicae in a Kharybdis assault claw.  I have 5 of the butches and need to get the assault claw and the medicae, they are quite expensive.  But when I have them together a unit will be assembled that will handily survive almost any shooting phase.

One issue that developed was when Angron landed with his command squad the subsequent round of mass melta fire I landed into wiped the squad, including Angron.  Mass 4+ invulnerable saves, feel no pain, and two wounds per model will really help withstand a lot of terrible stuff.

Other folks recommend delivering a primarch in a spartan assault tank and I just don't like that option.  It seems there are too many things that can go wrong: immobilize on terrain, that extra lucky laser destroyer shot, your ally in an apoc game moving into your lane before you move the tank and more things I am sure I am forgetting.  With a pod of some type a great deal higher probability exists that I will get that turn two charge. The pod being destroyed is of little use; a lot less points are wasted.

In the end Angron is a great model with decent rules and is effective if he is delivered where he can best be utilized.  He is an extremely expensive beat stick and that is about it. Other primarchs boost their army in some way and all he does is give a 12" fearless bubble.  That is pretty nice, but not as good as other primarchs.

First impressions of Codes: Khorne Daemonkin

Image courtesy of Games Workshop
I got my skulltaker edition the other day and played my first game against eldar with a slaughtercult and a charnel cohort. Here is what I learned.

The hounds are worth their weight. Scouting them up really messes with the enemy's target priority. I say take two squad of 8.  I think there is going to be a decent debate about where to take the hounds, either in the Gorepack or in a Charnal Cohort.

I deep struck two squad of blood letters and thanks to BftBG it was very liberating not having to worry about mishaps. I could be a little more daring with their positioning. If they died, who cares? two tithe points! If they got blasted next turn, who cares? two tithe points and they are keeping shots off my other guys. If they live furious charge and a tithe bonus will assure I wipe out whatever I assault.

I think Berzerkers are dang near useless. Why should I take them when I can run cheaper marines that have bolters and a CCW for two points per and combine them with the tithe bonus that gives them rage and furious charge? If they are getting charged then I failed in my positioning so I don't need counter attack. I have the ability to go to ground. I can use my bolters to double tap after I disembark from my rhinos. The tithe bonus, especially with the slaughtercult, makes them better than berzerkes, especially for the points.  Thier only saving grace is WS 5 and if you have the points take them, but I think more can be done with CSMs

I ran my lord as cheap as I could on a juggernaught with a sigil and goredrinker. I put him with a full squad of spawn so he wouldn't lose anything out on majority toughness. I think as long as you hug terrain it shouldn't be much of an issue. Goredrinker is nuts. I want to pair goredrinker with an axe of khorne so later in the game he a cheaper, faster abaddon. All it takes is 8 kills.

A squad of 8 bloodcrushers with a herald that gave hatred was a major beatstick. With all the target priority shenanigans these guys were able to move up the field and wreak havoc. I think they are a glass cannon, though. Enough shooting and they will fall pretty easy. That is why comboing them with other fast moving units like hounds works well.

If a rhino is being used don't mess with blowing smoke. You want them dead for that tithe point. Move them flat out for that extra 6 inches instead. A quick aside, if the enemy kills my rhino can my marines assault in my next turn? I remember there being a rules debate about this but I don't remember.

I used my cultists as objective campers but it brought up a really good issue of objective placement. I say place them in a potential mid field or entice a bias to one side and make sure the enemy gets it. Khorne Demonkin can move so fast that having units sitting in the back on objectives is a waste. Put those cultists up front early to get the blood tithe points for that army wide FNP or to summon some demons.

The tithe overall is great but not much past option 4. 5 and 6 are situational. I think if you can take advantage of some shooting with the skull cannon on some bunched up enemies then go for it. But summoning stuff that can't act for one or two turns is almost useless, not to mention sacrificing a character somewhere. 7 and 8 I think are really almost useless. Unless you can put a prince or thirster out on turn two, or one somehow, then they aren't going to have enough effect on the game to make it worth while. Besides, if you can get one out that early then the enemy is dying so fast you aren't going to need him or your models are dying so fast that putting even a thirster out there isn't going to make a difference. Coming in turn 3 and flying they might only effect two units.

+1 attack characteristic will help your guys survive or finish subsequent rounds of assaults really nice. Army wide FNP is super awesome. If you know you are going to mass assault something the rage/furious charge tithe will smash the enemy and save you from having to buy berzerkers.

I think the artifact armor on a flying demon prince would be cool but that is 250 points and would be too expensive by then.

Overall this codex is great and will take a lot of people off guard. As someone said elsewhere losing units really buffs your army

A resurgence of the Devourer of Stars!

Hello everyone, long time no blog, lol.

With the new Khorne Daemonkin codex coming out my interest in 40k has been renewed. Not just because a new Khorne themed codex is out, but because I believe this codex to be very powerful. Whats even more special is the folks believe this codex to be mediocre. It may very well be, the jury is still out, but I think the codex is a wolf in sheep's clothing. One thing is for sure, though, this codex is a godsend compared to the most previous chaos space marines codex (I can't speak for the supplements, I haven't read them).

The current edition Chaos Space Marine codex is trash. Maybe by itself, in a vacuum, it is ok, but compared tp all the other codecies that have come out since that dex it is one of the most bland and boring out there. What is more sad is that since Khorne Daemonkin coming out and most units being copy pasted (and in the case of the Skulltaker, very poorly copy pasted) there is no indication that Chaos Space Marines are going to improve in any significant way. 

A lot of folks are upset that Kharn the Betrayer and Karanak aren't in the codex. I can understand that disappointment. But the lack of those awesome characters doesn't dissuade me from the codex. I think there are better, more fun HQ choices (in regards to Kharn anyways) available in the codex. I will detail this later on.

Subsequent posts on this blog are going to detail lists, strategies, battle reports, modeling and much more, including my entire company of Heresy era World Eaters Orbital Assault force, including Angron, Kharn, and 100 other bloodthirsty marines ready to slaughter in the name of Khorne.

Lastly, I want to give a shout out to some other blogs out there that are good resources for World Eaters and Khrone Daemonkin information.

If there is anything I need to add let me know.