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The "How to beat..." anything thread!


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I disagree with you about Devestators-against marines 4 krak missiles can be, indeed, devestating. And the squad itself is relatively cheap, which allows you to give them some meat shields.
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In response to iamfanboy's and Inquisitor Alcyon's comments on devastators; lascannons and plasma cannons are severely overpriced, as compared to HBs and MLs. If you were to take a dev squad, only use them for HBs and MLs. Lascannons and plasma cannons (which, IMO, aren't that good in 4th ed) should be kept on tacticals. Not only does this make it easier to split fire, you save alot on the premium points you would have to pay otherwise.
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I have to say this


A Dev squad with 4 Missile Launchers AND Infiltrate is incredibly nasty just ask 5 of my 6 opponents at the UK GT Heat 1 the ability to set up your own Fire lanes is incredible

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OK, now for the sub-codexes. I'll discuss the differences between these armies and the main Codex mostly; many of the notes I've already given for Space Marines apply wholeheartedly to this list.


Note that ANY army chosen from an alternate Codex CANNOT benefit from any of the Traits in the main SM book. Essentially, the sub-Codexes are entire new armies that happen to share so many units and equipments with the main Space Marine list that to save on printing space and bookkeeping they just said, "Look at the Codex: Space Marines!"



Black Templar


First of all, most of what I COULD say on this list is subject to change because of the new Black Templar Codex coming out, but there ARE certain things which have been confirmed. Just remember, the basics will remain the same, but some of the specifics will change very soon.


When I first saw the Black Templar rules, my first thought was, "The only vow any of them are ever going to take is 'Accept Any Challenge, No Matter The Odds.'" Time has proven me right except in a rare few cases. I once tricked a guy; after telling him I had Eldar, he took "Be Pure in Mind, Body, and Soul"... too bad for him I didn't have any psykers on the field. Psych! :)


Essentially, there are 4 vows. One lets his normal Space Marines hit on a 3+, another gives him a 6+ Invulnerable save but doesn't let him use cover, the third lets him add +1 to his Marine's wounding rolls (NOT a +1 to his strength; that's important) but -1 to his I, and the last lets him make a free move towards any psykers on the field. Naturally, the hit on a 3+ one is by far the most popular, and it gives him an edge in close combat against another Space Marine army where otherwise he may have a problem. At least his Neophytes don't benefit from vows...


My second thought was, "Falling FORWARD? :cuss? ::cuss: " Literally. I said :cuss in a store that had several small children with their mother buying them little toy soldiers in it. If a squad of BT fails an Ld check, they run FORWARD instead of AWAY. This is probably their biggest asset and sometimes their biggest liability; free movement forward during an opponent's turn is OK by most BT players, but sometimes that leaves them JUST CLOSE enough to be charged instead of being the ones doing the charging... but they don't care too much about that, since they'll have the edge with their 3+ to hit anyway. According to industry rumor, now BTs fall forward if they fail an Ld check with even a single casualty, rather than 25% as normal. Urk.


I know that the Emperor's Champion entry has changed due to a recent White Dwarf entry, but because I don't have that WD I can't comment any on him. All I remember is something about him not taking up the only Iron Halo any more... but I don't know. Someone enlighten us?


As far as Troops go, it looks as though the system of Initiate (regular Marines) and Neophyte (Scouts) mixed in the same squad will remain. BT squads CAN'T have Veteran Sergeants, but most wouldn't want them anyway; a higher Ld would be death to the falling-forward tactic. Most kit out their BTs for close combat with BP/CCW; since BTs don't have Devastators some players have a squad or two held back with either Lascannons or Plasma Cannons - if he has squads like that, making them fall forward is a benefit to you; because they need to regroup in the following turn, they can't fire their heavier weaponry. Because of that, fewer BT players are giving squads the heavy weapons.


Black Templars have (now) the cheapest HQ choice available: the humble Marshal. But most still prefer the Chaplain, but here's a case where having tons of Chaplains actually fits the fluff of the army! Death to the infidel, the Emperor is best worshipped on the battlefield, that sort of thing - and because the Chaplain entry is taken right from the Codex, BT Chaplains still get that nasty ability that lets their squads reroll misses in the first round of charging.


Terminator Assault Squads are popular among BT players for fluff reasons and because falling forward helps them get in close too - heck, he may not even bother putting them in an Crusader!


Watch for Black Templar assault squads - though they sacrifice their bolt pistol to do so, the squad can have Storm Shields. Yes. Every member of the squad can have 4+ Invul in hand to hand, which makes them that much tougher to deal with in CC. This is liable to go away in the new Codex, but that's not for certain, yet...


Bikes are still unpopular compared to the Landspeeder (providing mobile firepower not vulnerable to falling forward) and the Assault Squad discussed above, even though they can have Neophyte Bikers too.


Ah, Land Raider Crusaders. They first showed up in the BT list, and I liked them so much that I bought one and spent many hours Looting it for my Ork army - until I realized that I couldn't take it as a Looted vehicle legally. So, now it's a Battlewagon. Most Black Templar players love the LRC - the expanded carrying capacity means they can have full squads of Initiates and Neophytes, and they dish out a lot of mobile firepower - but they still have the same problems as the ordinary Land Raider. Most will add another fire support tank or two even with the LRC in their army.


Try to focus your fire on squads that falling forward won't help, and will in fact leave him at a disadvantage - and it's better to charge him than to wait for him to charge YOU. Oh, sure, he'll hit you on a 3+ - but at leasty you're denying him the extra attack.



...If I seem to have a certain disdain for BT players, you'd be right; I see too many people who played Blood Angels during the height of the Rhino Rush dipping and repainting their forces to Black Templar colors (or just going the lazy way and saying that their force is a Blood Angels crusade!) because 'falling forward' is almost as good a way to get in close and personal. I like their fluff, to be sure, but they're a power-gaming army because the things you lose don't even come close to the benefits you gain if you play them. Expect to see them grow in popularity even further with the advent of the new Codex; once it hits stores I'll buy one and add another entry to this thread.


Next up, speaking of Blood Angels -


Blood Angels


As everyone knows, the Blood Angels get Furious Charge for free, and pay for that with the 'penalty' of (sometimes) rushing forward in a frenzied rage. This does effect everything in the army, so you have to watch for it. If you're lucky, it'll draw him out of position; if you're unlucky, it'll happen just in time to get half his army into assaulting range... and by those standards, more opponents are unlucky rather than lucky. Also note that the Black Rage is rolled for at the beginning of the turn, and then movement goes on as normal - this means that unlike Khorne and Daemonic Flight, BAs with Jump Packs or Bikes REALLY benefit from Raging.


Also, at the start of the game, he may lose members of his squads to the Death Company led by the obligatory Chaplain - but most of the time, he WANTS this to happen. Blood Angels players keep a ton of extra DC-painted models for just such an opportunity... but I'll discuss Death Company later.


His Tactical Squads are just the same as regular SM Tac squads (with the addid fillip that he's likely to take Veteran Sergeants with no other upgrades, for Death Company reasons), but his Scouts cannot be equipped with Sniper Rifles or any heavy weapons.


His HQ choices... he's always going to have a Chaplain. Bar none. The chaplain will also be given a jump pack to keep up with the Death Company that he leads. He may well have a second Chaplain for even more DC goodness, or a Librarian for their basic psychic power. The Apothecary equivalent, a Sanguinary Priest, is good for a quick laugh; he can buy Apothecary equipment from the Armoury, but there's no price listed for the Apothecary gear in the armoury! His special ability is stolen and made better by the Chaplain these days, so no one uses him unless they want an Honour Guard - but for close combativeness, most prefer to depend on the cheaper and better Death Company.


Ah, Death Company. Probably ounce for ounce one of the best combat units in the game, especially with the Chaplain's special ability; you can give them free Jump Packs for quick speed (which is what most players do), and any Veteran Sergeants which join the Death Company at the beginning of the game get a free power weapon or Fist - which leads many BA players to just buy 'naked' veterans with no upgrades for many of his squads so as to up his chances of getting those free weapons. Also, they're uber-tough, with the ability to shrug off shooting hits (unless they're double-toughness) and close combat wounds that DON'T ignore armour saves.


Focus a great deal of firepower on these blood-crazed lunatics, and if you have the chance, charge them rather than waiting to be charged - sure, you'll lose plenty of guys, but it's better than letting them get that Furious Charge... remember, however, that he doesn't have that many points bound up in the Death Company, so the main reason to wipe them out isn't for VPs - it's because they're DANGEROUS. Plus, the larger his Death Company, the more the rest of his army is weakened. If DC losses means that one of his squads is near 50% strength, be sure to leap on that squad quickly to get some more VPs.


For Elites, there's the Veteran Assault squad - these days a BA player is far more likely to just take a regular Assault Squad - and the Furioso Dreadnought, one with two DCCWs. It's quite cheap for the threat it poses, though more players are liable to take regular Dreads for Assault Cannons than bring out the Furioso.


'Baal' class Predators are, quite honestly, nasty. With a twin-linked Assault Cannon standard and heavy bolter sponsons, these guys are lethal against ANYTHING, tanks or troops. Their main guns are relatively short-ranged, however - giving you a decent chance of nailing their weak side armour.


For new items, the Death Mask is interesting to look at - anyone fighting against a model wearing it gets another -1 to Ld. Some players looking for a bit more of an edge might take one, but they aren't too popular. Neither are any of the other BA-specific upgrades, but there used to be one that was a no-brainer...


At the height of the Rhino Rush, with Super-Charged Engines, Blood Angels were the unbeatable army. I managed to beat them once, but only because my opponent got greedy and stupid. Thankfully, the Over-Charged Engine is now a dead list entry, because it was 'corrected' in much the same way as Obliterators.


I can't really say what makes up a typical BA army these days. With no more Rhino Rush, they lost most of the advantages that made them 'power gamer' oriented; someone playing the BA these days is likely to do it for fluff reasons. Watch for his Death Company, if it looks like you're going to be charged don't be afraid to charge first and deny him that Furious Charge benefit, and learn to hate the Baal Predator. ;)



OK, it's time for sleep. Tomorrow, I'll cover Dark Angels, Space Wolves, and 13th Company; for tonight I'm too tired. Go to the PC&A and say nasty things about my lousily painted Raptors! :blush:

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I'd just like to add about facing an Armored Company. I only faced it once, at a GT, and though I thought I was done for, I scored a massacre. I was playing Chaos, with 2 melta-guns, a LR, 2 lascannons, a CC Dreadnought (Hellblade) and a monstrous creature DP (Str 5 + 2d6) as my only weapons capable of busting these tanks. Here are my observations;


As my opponent kindly pointed out, if you survive past the third turn, you're probably going to win. This implies that you have been moving forward with your units requiring short range to destroy the tanks. Of course, you need to count what weapons can actually damage all those tanks, and send your weaker strength towards basilisks and keep your higher strength weaponry towards the heavier armor. Deepstrikers and infiltrators will of course provide invaluable.


The AC player will generally deploy tanks next to each other to protect each-other's weaker side armor. This also means that if you attack from an angle, many a sponson's line of sight will be blocked by it's own tanks. Use it to your advantage. The tactic that worked for me was to attack from both sides, forcing him to expose side armor. Fast units will provide invaluable. I use my so-called useleff pointsink LR (I disagree with the statement) to move forward 12 on my first turn, deploy my Melta-gun squad and shoot a leman russ for a weapon destroyed result. That squad became a big thron on one side, as 8-man squads will survive a few shells of Ordonnance and still retain their tank-busting efficiency.


Everyone who could not hurt a tank were kept hidden to deny VP to my opponent. I could have grouped squads with little hope of destroying tanks together, to draw attention from the indirect ordonnance away from the real hitters. But if your opponent knows his stuff,l he won't fall for this strategy. I must admit I also got lucky when my Dread busted 3 tanks in 3 turns, but because the AC tends to deploy in tight ranks, once you assault one side with a Powerfist or melta-gun, you're in business, using the previously busted tank's carcass as cover to stalk your next prey, jumping from one carcass to the next. If you can reach both flanks at the same time, your opponent will have nowhere to hide. The Armored company's weakness lies at very short range.


Good luck!



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A little bit on DE from an experienced (5 years out of the 6 they've been out) DE player:


With the coming of the 4th Edition, Raider Rushing is actually less viable than before, due to the more punishing effects of shooting on vehicles. Raiders are paper thin, and after they get shot down, most of the squad dies and is stranded. Thus WWP armies are the way to go.


Standard WWP armies use 2 WWP's, both carried by footslogging Sybarites protected by a 20 man Warrior squad. On the Table are more footslooging Sniper-Lance squads, as well as some fast counter attack elements. The army will FoF close enough and open the portals usually on the 2nd turn. The next turn, all the vehicles and evil units (Incubi, Wyches, Grotesques, Talos...) will fly out and engage in close combat.


Its really hard to kill both 20 man WWP squads, so you'll really have to hope the Close combat squads come out piecemeal


- Dem

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Just to point out that BT Command Squads Can take a Vet Sgt in them


Some of the Industry Rumours concerning what will happen to the Black Templars in there New Dex


Assault Squad will not only keep the Storm Sheild option but will also gain the option of upgrading the squad with Combat Shields (I will be doing this as soon as I've seen the cost)


Our Sword Brethren Squads (BT Vets) will have the same options as a standard Vet squad with the added bonus of Both SS and CS squad options


Our Rightous Zeal will be changed to the fact that it will be based on PASSED instead of Failed Morale Checks


The Emperors Champion will no longer be required in games under 750pts but our Vows now are added to his cost so no Emperors Champion in your list then no Vows


those are all the ones I can think of at the moment

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Is this Vet Sarge in command squads an FAQ addition, Ryan? Because clear as day in the Codex: Armageddon, the Command Squad is labeled with an asterisk that says in essence, "Please note that Black Templar units cannot have Veteran Sergeants..."



Sorry about the little slipups in my BA post - I was taking a break between coats of Krylon on finished minis and basecoating some other minis, and I may have been affected by the fumes. "Remember that time I thought your twenty-sider was a spider and tried to squish it? Pen-fumes, dude!"


Are you sure that's the way the Grail works now, Wolf Lord? Is this an FAQ addition, or just a thing your group does? I'll admit, my copy of the Codex is OLD... may be a first printing, I don't know.

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Don't worry, Nidhogg, I'll get to it - all in good time. Patience, grasshopper, or you'll never be able to snatch the six-sider from my hand.


OK, time to get busy. Next up comes the Dark Angels.



Dark Angels


Any idiosyncrasities in this entry must be forgiven and corrected by those that know better, because I only have the older Codex and (more's the pity, I can't open up the official GW FAQ.) That really ticks me off. :blush:


(man, I'm so reluctant to do this one, but I'll trust the Dark Angel's players to correct me if I'm wrong).


The DA have one rule that benefits them no matter which way the cheese is cut - the Stubborn ability. Characters pass any Morale checks that they have to make, and they confer this ability to any units they join. This also applies to any Terminator squads that they take, so watch for it.


Also, the DA are supposed to be constantly "Hunting the Fallen" - which can be just another D6x10 victory points, depending on how he rolls. If it turns out that one of your Veteran Sergeants is really a member of the Fallen, try to keep him from getting into close combat with that model - or use him as bait for a trap.


Troops are essentially the same as in the Codex list, with the added fillip that many of the more 'fluffy' Dark Angels players do so love plasma cannons that the squads may well be filled with 'em.


Ah, yes, that's one thing to note - moreso than any other players in this game, the Dark Angels are fluffminded. This means that 1) they're generally more experienced and 2) they make choices not always based on what's most effective. I've yet to see a DA player hit the table WITHOUT at least a squad of Terminators. This can be used against them to some degree, but with difficulty...


As far as HQ choices go, the DA army is the only one where you're quite likely to see someone that ISN'T a Chaplain! Oh, sure, Interrogator-Chaplains are entirely fluffy and well-liked, but a Sword of Secrets in the hands of a Grand Master is one of the few ways that a Space Marine character can have higher than a measly S4. I respect DA in close combat for that reason. Also, their Relics are far more interesting tactically than the basic stuff in the SM codex... but I'll come to that in a bit.


As I mentioned before, you're almost guaranteed to see a Deathwing Terminator squad in a Dark Angels army, and because of that most DA players have learned to use them RIGHT - and with the ability to teleport at any time, DA players love these guys even more. However, because I don't have access to the FAQ, I don't know if he's supposed to use the price in this Codex or if it was adjusted in light of the overall Termie price drop. If he's holding some off in Reserve, watch for a well-placed Veteran Sergeant with a teleport homer or a safe gap in your lines for him to teleport into and cause havoc.


Ravenwing is an interesting and characterful, but not overpowered, modification to the standard DA Fast Attack. In all vital ways, they are just the same as regular Bikes, Landspeeders, and Attack Bikes - except that they get a 6+ invulnerable save against enemy shooting attacks. This makes their Landspeeders a little more expensive, but can give that vital last-ditch save to the lucky player.


heavy support is identical to regular Marines.


Wargear... Wargear provide many interesting quirks to the standard Space Marine list; in fact, I'd venture to say that the Relics are what make a Dark Angels army Dark Angels, which is entirely befitting a chapter so in tune with its roots. Blades of Reason can give a DA player just enough of a VP edge for its cost that I'm surprised more players don't use them. I've never seen the Book of Salvation, but if your opponent drops one on the table, go for the model carrying it with all you have and don't let him get it back - if he doesn't have it back by the end of the game, he loses! The Lion Helm is more common, giving anyone within a 3" radius a 4+ invul against shooting - for good reason, many DA players love these in their Command Squads! The two standards are also nice and fun - one lets the player, once a game, allow one of his squads to shoot at you during YOUR assault phase, before you move your assaulters. The other lets a unit, once a game, count as stationary for a turn when firing Rapid Fire weapons - which could be used just before a devastating assault to soften up your lines. The last standard just lets you reroll failed to-hits during one CC - not nearly as fun as the other two. I've already discussed the Sword of Secrets, so now let's move onto the alternate lists -



Deathwing. Urk. There are THREE Deathwing players in my local group, none of whom are particularly good. The thing to remember about Deathwing is that they only have one scoring unit for every three HUNDRED points, on average, and that means that a good player will keep his army together, supporting each other closely. You're also likely to see a Librarian with Fear of the Darkness - a good DW player knows that the more units running away from him, the fewer units that are shooting him and assaulting him. Deep Striking is a possibility, but it can end up disastrously as his squads appear piecemeal - they really need a Lysander-ish rule to truly simulate the effectiveness of a mass teleportation. You're likely to see Dreadnoughts configured solely for long-range fire support - DW players know that they have the short-range and the close combat covered. Remove his scoring units, focus your fire on one unit on a time, and you'll have a good chance of winning.


Ravenwing are another army that a player takes, not because he wants to win, but because he wants to play with STYLE. Expect a fantastically shooty force from a Ravenwing player, loaded to the brim with Landspeeders and Bikes that zoom around the table, crushing your army one flank at a time. Try not to spead out too much when playing a Ravenwing player - keeping close means that you can support any squads that suffer badly and return fire.


Up until this point, I've avoided discussing special characters, but a Master of the Ravenwing is likely to show up in a Ravenwing army - with a 4+ Invulnerable save, the fact that he's a scoring unit, and his "All-Seeing Eye" rule he can really make the difference for a Ravenwing player. Try to take him out, but don't stress too much if he keeps making those 4+ saves - you'll take him out eventually.



OK, next I go for Space Wolves and 13th Company. I've gotta get something in my stomach and maybe work on retouching my next squad before clearcoating them...

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Right, a couple things you should know (and it's understandable if you don't, not having a copy of the 2nd edition codex, nor the couple of hundred FAQs that have accompanied 4th edition).


The one and only thing that actually make Dark Angels "shooty" is the Intractable rule. Because of it, no Dark Angels squad will ever run from shooting. If you want to take out a Tactical squad with a hidden lascannon, you will have to either assault it, or else kill every member of that Tactical squad due to shooting.


The stubborn rule is almost the same as fearless, with one small difference. Bear in mind it costs Dark Angels characters an additional 5 points. Plus, every HQ character must take Terminator Honours, so you can be sure they're more expensive than their codex equivalents.


Also keep in mind Deathwing Terminators are the same as codex terminators except they must buy stubborn for an additional 5 points per model (as per the latest GW FAQ on their website). Ravenwing bikers likewise didn't benefit from the drop in points that the SM bikers received in the latest codest Space Marines, so be confident that when you see them, they are sucking up a huge amount of points.

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First of all, I'd just like to point out one thing about the Necron Monolith - even though it is extremely big, it doesn't block line of sight or fire, since it is a skimmer. (just a thing to keep in mind, since the model as such does block the viewer's line of sight when doing a "model's eye view" check.)



Secondly, regarding BT's:

if he has squads like that, making them fall forward is a benefit to you; because they need to regroup in the following turn, they can't fire their heavier weaponry

Don't BT's have ATSKNF? If they do, they can regroup and shoot heavy weapons, just as all other marines.


Some notes regarding Dark Angels:


"Hunting the fallen" only happens one game in 6, and the extra VP's won (or lost, if we fail) rarely make a difference, so the only reason to hunt down the little bugger is for fluff reasons.


Deathwing terminators: They were a lot better before the 4.1 FAQ - we no longer can mix CC and shooty termies in squads. The points have been modified in the same way that regular termies have had theirs modified. Personally I never field any terminators at under 2000 points (or only terminators, but that's a different thing).


Ravenwing bikes and attack bikes are WAY more expensive than their codex twins, since these are still bought for the costs in C:DA. On the topside, our AB's still have terminator-like armour save, and no 2-model minimum (but only one wound). This means that the single, tank-hunting AB is still viable for DA players, and even better now with the turbo-boost rules.


Regarding our cool standards, the Lion Helm and the Sword of Secrets - most of these (not the Sword) are on the relics list now, which means that they'll very rarely see play anymore.


Oh - it's worth to note that we can buy stubborn for our vet sarges as well, making our entire army virtually fearless.


And even if we don't - there's still the "intractable" rule, which basically makes sure we never fall back due to shooting casualties.


All in all these two nifty abilities make DA a very stable army, since you know at all times what your troops will do in a pinch :)


just my .02 [insert currency here]

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Firstly the Dark Angels relics. I dislike the Cup of Retribution since, unlike normal Holy Relics, the bearer must be stationary to reveal it. Secondly, our Landspeeders. A Ravenwing Landspeeder upgraded with an assault cannon is exactly the same in points as a normal Landspeeder with an assault cannon, because we get it for a bit cheaper. Very, very nice! Keep it up.
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Up until this point, I've avoided discussing special characters, but a Master of the Ravenwing is likely to show up in a Ravenwing army - with a 4+ Invulnerable save, the fact that he's a scoring unit, and his "All-Seeing Eye" rule he can really make the difference for a Ravenwing player. Try to take him out, but don't stress too much if he keeps making those 4+ saves - you'll take him out eventually.


Don't forget the Master on Speeder's Raven Sword. It can be used to do a fly-by-beheading of the hidden powerfist sgt. It's a S6 attack with no saves so the sgt(or even the lascannon guy) will surely die this way.



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And even if we don't - there's still the "intractable" rule, which basically makes sure we never fall back due to shooting casualties.


I can see how this can be manipulated- many the time I've fired my Command Squad's bolt pistols and flamers at a squad, only for that squad to break and run, leaving my Command Squad unable to charge.


For that reason, against vanilla SM's I'm very hesitant to shoot before charging. But with the DA Intractable rule, shoot away.


iamfanboy: Good work, a similar article in WD would make it worth buying.

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As strange as it sounds, the BTs actually DON'T have ATSKNF as it's not listed anywhere in the Codex. All the other Codex Chapters have that special rule somewhere in their list of Special Rules, but the BT's don't.


Ah. I didn't know that. Good to know if I ever go up against BT's, then.

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Arrr but BT do get ATSKNF its in there update that they follow all the STANDARD SM rules except were modified by the FAQ


Secoundly iamfanboy you must be looking at a first print of the Armaggeddon Codex cos when they re-printed it, they put in the thing about BT CS's and Vet Sgts and that they could take BP & CCW's

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