Just busy digesting the new codex for the last week. It's a cracking read I must say, and some of the notions within it are certainly exciting. The urge to take a Disc riding chaos lord with a sigil, mark of tzeentch (for a 3++) and give him a Black Mace to do the dirty to the backfield is almost overwhelming ... however, my impressions (in a Sean Connery voice):
Defilers: I always liked them, now they are shit hot. 4 hull points with a battlecannon, healing hull points on a 5+, and 5++ Deamon save, fleet - what's not to like? Seems odd that they bought out these new awesome models and made the defiler even better? Is it a landraider - nope, but it beats the crap out of the "new" dreadnought. Oh, and if 5 powerfist attacks on the charge aren't enough, it can also have a 'power scourge', you don't even have to hit 'with it', just any unit in base to base with a model with a power scourge automatically has D3 taken off their WS every phase . Oh and just checking the rules, a walker can move and fire ALL its weapons - so I'm thinking an reaper autocannon, Havoc launcher, combi-melta and battlecannon isn't overkill, is it?
Deamon Prince: Never bought one as I didn't like the model and THANK GOD FOR THAT. They just took the 'must have' HQ choice and turned him into a joke. He is an MC with 4 wounds, a 3+/5++ tops ... yeah, my trygons were tough like that too.
Revised HQ's: Ok so the new HQ's don't have eternal warrior spam like the smurf one's, but they have tactical options to make you pause. For my money the top three are: Abaddon, a 2+,4++ close combat monster of death with knobs on, Ahriman for all round spellcaster evil powerhouse. Finally Typhus is a hardcore model with solid stats and fantastic upgrade options (Deathguard plus Zombies, what's not to like?) Huron wins runner up as 'budget' option for his guaranteed 'infiltrate' roll, good stats, quality toolkit and 'random' magic.
Mutilators and Oblivitators - oh my: Oblits are even better, 2+, 5++ with a Tzeentch boost option (4++) makes them particularly sweet. Add in a 5 point discount on the last codex, the inclusion of ASSAULT CANNON on their slow and purposeful asses. Luckily S&P has become better (ish), it no longer requires 2D6 movement tests, but does mean you can't run or fire overwatch, which is a shame. You can move normally and pump peeps full of S6 AP4 rending shots - which makes any imperial guard player worry over a deepstriking oblit team mincing his heavy weapons teams. 3points extra for for a 2+,4++ 2W deep striking swiss army knife - bargain!
Terminators: Anyone else noticed that Terminators can now take EITHER a cool close combat weapon OR a cool combi weapon? Yeah, that sucks doesn't it. To add insult to injury, they are 5 points cheaper for 2 dudes and a chump, but you can only take 1 chump (you can't upgrade them all to champions, for obvious boon confusicrapness) and the chump has identical stats - ie: ONLY 2 attacks anyhow. This means the end of I5, 5 attacks on the charge lightning claw'd monsters - rubbish. Still useful, but this combo will make them second choice.
Chaos Space Marines: These guys are cheap, at 75pts for 5 including a champion. This is a brilliant drop from the 90pts in the previous codex. That said, just like normal tactical squads, you don't get the pistol and knife combo (really tactical squads can't have knives, how cash-strapped is the imperium?) but the good news is that you can upgrade your boys for 2pts per fella to get a knife and that 'essential' additional attack in close combat. At base level that's 140 versus 170 for 10 vanilla marines, although you will miss combat squads/tactics and ATSHNF rules. Unlike vanilla, you can choose to take 2 meltas in the same squad and 200pts for 10 marines in a dirging rhino ain't bad.
Chaos Cultists: Yep, they are what we've been waiting for. They're the grease beneath the wheels of Dawn of War and they're pitiful cries (whilst building/fighting/dying) are what makes the chaos player sing. The combo of hardcore marines and fodder is a tempting one. If you throw in MR T in green and make them all zombies (FOR FREE?!?), with fearless and FNP - Ummm suddenly those like me with huge Imperial Guard armies and a selection of zombies are laughing. 165pts for a 35 man 'blob' with 3 flamers? Errr ... yes please. My Alpha Legion styled army are licking their lips already.
Raptors: Looks like my 5 man raptor team is being decommissioned as they are now completely pointless. Even the Chaos Spawn (which is better value than a Deamon Prince), can potentially charge 30" - eeek! Raptors can move 12" and then charge. Less impressive. This is set against Chaos Bikers who get Jink (5+ cover save if moved), +1T, Hammer of Wrath and Relentless (making plasmaguns awesome). Warptalons are equally 'meh', as the price is more than a plague marine?!?
Heldrake: The other reason why Raptors are so last year, there's a bloody great dragon on board. It can vector strike (which means D3+1 automatic hits at S7, AP3 - on vehicle side armour) ... ignoring the hades autocannon (4 S8 AP4 pinning), this beasty should definitely have the torrent baleflamer. It an AP3 soul blaze template at strength 6 - specifically designed to turn tactical squads into glue. 170pts and it can regrow it's hull points... OMFG.
Havocs: If the previous explanation wasn't enough, Havocs can now kit out missile launcher, which have flakk skyfire rounds. Not quite the Heldrake, but for taking down those pesky flyers - essential.
So what would I take?
- Huron BlackHeart - (160)
- Plague Marines (7) - Powerfist, 2 plasmaguns, Mutation, Rhino, Dirge Caster (273)
- Terminators (5) - 2 Lightning Claws, Chainfist and combi-bolter, Heavy flamer and powerfist, combi-melta and power weapon - (265)
- Chaos Space Marines (10) - 2 x melta and powerfist, Rhino, dirge caster (225)
- Chaos Space Marine (10) - 2 x melta and power weapon, Rhino, dirge caster (215)
- Chaos Cultists (35) - 3 flamers (165)
- Chaos Bikers (3) - 2 meltaguns and combi melta and a power weapon (115)
- Obliterators (2) - Mark of Tzeentch (156)
- Defiler - Power Scourge, Reaper Autocannon, Havoc launcher, dirge caster and combi-melta (252pts)
- Havocs (5) - 4 Missile Launchers with Flakk (175)
The Heldrake would be interchangeable with the Havocs. I've only left out the heldrake as I already have the list above.