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Dreadclaw and other Drop Pods


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Trying to figure out how to use drop pods (for Mhara Gals and Gal Vorbak specifically). Seems to me that without some specific rite of war I am unaware of - they're not terribly great for assaults?

 

Deep Strike Assault:
Drop pod and Dreadnought Drop Pod: Drop turn 2, Impact Reactive Doors force Disembarkation, no Assault Vehicle means Assaults on turn 3
Dreadclaw: Drop turn 2, disembark turn 3, no Assault Vehicle means no Assault until turn 4 - being a special allowance for Gal Vorbak in WB RoW Last of the Serrated Sun, it seems like a poor choice for them to deep strike with.
Kharybdis: Drop turn 2, disembark turn 3, Assault Vehicle allows Assault turn 3.

Dreadclaw hover: Arrive turn 2, hover <8", Disembark, then Assault turn 3.

Spartan Land Raider: On table turn 1, drive 6", Disembark and Assault, allt turn 1, or turn 2 if you need to move further, naturally.

Anything I'm missing, besides pinning tests and heat blast being bonuses when deep striking?

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Oh, my brain skipped entirely that Drop Pod Assault and Deep Strike Assault are entirely different things! Ok, so at least there is a way to drop turn 1, that's great! But that makes the WB RoW for giving Gal Vorbak Dreadclaws even sillier, as you can then give most of your army drop pods but you miss out on 2-3 turns of actually fighting from them... tsk.

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Drop pods and dreadclaws are very much rides for close-ranged shooting, or are nice anchor pieces for a wider deepstrike. They're also  a way to provide a unit with deepstrike if you want it to cause some disruption up the board.

What pods aren't, are forms of alpha strike or early assault transports. The kharybdis is a little unique in that it's basically a flying transport with assault vehicle and functions much like a storm eagle. But in drop pod assault you get some of that turn 1 pod magic back and charge off the drop.

The big difference between Spartans and the pods is points, foc slot, being able to ignore intervening stuff for movement (so irrelevant on a lot of tables due to poor terrain) and being largely immune to damage due to being a flyer. Iron hands in particular will gobble Spartans up, but will have a lot harder time stopping the contents of a pod from getting in position.

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10 minutes ago, SkimaskMohawk said:

Drop pods and dreadclaws are very much rides for close-ranged shooting, or are nice anchor pieces for a wider deepstrike. They're also  a way to provide a unit with deepstrike if you want it to cause some disruption up the board.

What pods aren't, are forms of alpha strike or early assault transports. The kharybdis is a little unique in that it's basically a flying transport with assault vehicle and functions much like a storm eagle. But in drop pod assault you get some of that turn 1 pod magic back and charge off the drop.

The big difference between Spartans and the pods is points, foc slot, being able to ignore intervening stuff for movement (so irrelevant on a lot of tables due to poor terrain) and being largely immune to damage due to being a flyer. Iron hands in particular will gobble Spartans up, but will have a lot harder time stopping the contents of a pod from getting in position.

Thank you, that is a fantastic response and gives me a lot of new ways to think about this! 

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I'd be curious to see how this worked in practice. Not very well, I think. The problem is the reactions that the enemy are going to throw at you.

Say your opponent has his 20-man tactical squads with augury scanners on the front line, as they may well. They get to use the interceptor reaction when you deploy. They count as stationary so fire 40-60 bolter shots as you step out of the drop pod, before you get to the shooting phase. Then if you shoot them they can return fire and hit you with 40-60 more bolter shots. Then their turn comes around and whoever is left alive from both units is stood there staring at each other.

Things aren't much better if you're in a plane or one of the flying pods. You'd better hope there isn't a Xiphon in combat air patrol reserve. 

Overall I think a Spartan is a better pick, but then of course a Spartan costs a lot more points than a drop pod. Honestly it looks like there's a reasonably strong case for just walking or using jump packs to cross the board.

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4 hours ago, Mandragola said:

I'd be curious to see how this worked in practice. Not very well, I think. The problem is the reactions that the enemy are going to throw at you.

Say your opponent has his 20-man tactical squads with augury scanners on the front line, as they may well. They get to use the interceptor reaction when you deploy. They count as stationary so fire 40-60 bolter shots as you step out of the drop pod, before you get to the shooting phase. Then if you shoot them they can return fire and hit you with 40-60 more bolter shots. Then their turn comes around and whoever is left alive from both units is stood there staring at each other.

Things aren't much better if you're in a plane or one of the flying pods. You'd better hope there isn't a Xiphon in combat air patrol reserve. 

Overall I think a Spartan is a better pick, but then of course a Spartan costs a lot more points than a drop pod. Honestly it looks like there's a reasonably strong case for just walking or using jump packs to cross the board.

It depends.

Some legions have some very strong deepstrike units, and can use a pod or dreadclaw top anchor a DSA; the elite melee units deepstriking without the pod can assault those very vulnerable tac squads while only losing ~1 or 2 models. Other legions like ultras can just dump their very durable units up the field and use dreads to add more pressure.

The more augury scanners, the harder it is, but you actually need augury scanners on good shooting units to make an impact. 

It's all relative. You know your friends' collections and what lists they favour. Do they run a lot of good shooting units that can take auguries? Or deredeos? Or arcuses? Maybe don't invest in pods without a really solid plan. Or do they go heavy on special and melee units themselves, and are very vulnerable to any form of deepstrike.

 

Also Xiphons can only snap shoot when coming in from combat air patrol, as the skyfire trigger is in the shooting phase, not movement.

 

 

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1 hour ago, SkimaskMohawk said:

Also Xiphons can only snap shoot when coming in from combat air patrol, as the skyfire trigger is in the shooting phase, not movement.

You're right according to RAW, though I do wonder if they'll change that. Even with snap shots it's 5 twin-linked shots, followed by whatever it does on its turn, on a 105 point plane. You need to bring dedicated AA to deal with the thing, which is a bit annoying.

I think the biggest issue is just the time it takes for a deep striking unit to get into melee, if that's their plan, and the cost of doing so. I think it's quite likely that they'll get into melee, but most likely only with a tactical squad after it's fired at them twice. They may well kill that tactical squad (though survivors might escape and regroup) but then you're very open to reprisals.

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@Mandragola well...ya, you don't want to take the pod or dreadclaw for a purely melee infantry unit. You take the normal pod for tooled up vets and the dreadclaw for tooled up termies. They can reliably blast something on the drop, and then have melee capability to back it up. The terminators especially have a good chance of sticking around with the 2+ and, presumably, 4++ and heavy. 

The tactical squad thing is odd. They really don't do much damage, as you need an average of 10 shots to do one unsaved wound to power armour. They also get bulldozed by every special weapon, and especially the fists that terminators and contemptors take. People just don't really take them in blob formation.

 

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