Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Space Marine List Evolution

As you last read I have embraced the concept of running Ultramarines simply because its the only way to run the sort of list I want to run in a way that doesn’t feel like I’m hemorrhaging value or making gross concessions.  Without reiterating it, Guilleman is a role compressor: for 360 points you get the best force multiplier a shooty army could want along with being one of the nastiest close combat units in the game and he is virtually immune to shooting.  You all know all that already.

I want lot’s of Razorbacks simply because they are efficient, and the best unit to unlock them, 5 man heavy/combi Tactical squads are also rather efficient.  Many people view Troops as the “tax” for unlocking the Battalion Detachment, and in some armies that is possibly true.  But for Marines, the troops are decent, if not good.  Oddly enough, if you are bringing Guilleman, the HQ becomes the tax.  Without Guilleman, one of the Chapter Masters or even min/maxed Captain with Combi Plasma give you very efficient force multiplier choices.  But with Guilleman you dont get a great deal from those.  Marneus Calgar is not great in a list with Guilleman, for example.  The aforementioned hyper efficient combiplas captain isn’t much better.  Assuming you don’t need re-rolls from your HQ, where do you find value?  You have to bring two of these to get a battalion and they need to have value.



Why bring a battalion?  Well we are already paying the “troop tax” voluntarily.  And no matter what formation we bring we need an HQ.  So really the “HQ tax” is only like 100 points for 2 extra command points, plus whatever value we get from that HQ.  With that right HQ, that is worthwhile.

Alright, so what HQ do we want to maximize our value?  In a list with Razorbacks and Dreadnaughts, especially one looking to economize on points the best option in the book is Techmarine.  For a dirt cheap 75 points you are likely to repair a half dozen wounds to your vehicles over the course of the game.  That is ridiculously powerful in a mechanized list.  The enemy cannot leave a wounded vehicle alive, he HAS to kill them if he is going to bother shooting at them at all.  This means spending his firepower inefficiently, which is a huge defensive bonus for you.  Basic Techmarine with Power Axe is where its at.  So much so, that I am tempted to bring 2 of them.

Except Librarians are also great.  A basic Librarian with Force Sword is price efficient, provides some psychic defense and thanks to power of his own is, if nothing else, a heavy firepower shooting unit from our HQ.  Not to mention that against some armies, Null Zone saves the day.  I’m not 100% convinced that the Libby is better than a second Techmarine would be, but the point of making initial lists is being a tad generalist and refine it after playtesting.  If the Libby is mediocre and the TM over preforms, make the swap.

Without further delay, here is the core of the list I’m working on now.

Lord of War Detachment
Roboute Guilleman 360 (warlord)

Battalion Detachment
Librarian w/ Force Sword 105
Techmarine w/ Power Axe 75

5 Tac Squad with Lascannon and combi Plasma 105
5 Tac Squad with Lascannon and combi Plasma 105
5 Tac Squad with Lascannon and combi Plasma 105

Ven Dread w/ 2x Twin Autocannon 156
Ven Dread w/ 2x Twin Autocannon 156

Predator w/ Pred AC, 2x Lascannons 201
Predator w/ Pred AC, 2x Lascannons 201

Razorback w/ Twin Assault Cannon 100
Razorback w/ Twin Assault Cannon 100
Razorback w/ Twin Lascannon 115
Razorback w/ Twin Lascannon 115

Total: 1,999 points
Command Points: 9

The predators are a bit of an experiment.  You could easily cut them, buy a third Ven Dread, and have points left over to spam more razorbacks.  It’s hard to say which option is more efficient.  It seems possible to me that two Assbacks is more powerful than a single Predator, but I’m not sure how it will play out.  Either way, I think this is a pretty mean list and I wouldn’t be excited to play against it.  Any thoughts?  Am I missing something?

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