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"Pink isn't a color. It's a lifestyle." - Chumbalaya
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Sunday, April 11, 2010

Armies in 5th: Blood Angels Part 4: Force multipliers



Force multipliers are fun. Really fun rather. So much fun, there’s a whole post devoted to them and you’re reading it (I should stop with the bad humor yes?). The most obvious force multiplier to date would be the Tervigon or other units that buff the army (i.e. Vulkan, etc.) or change the dynamic of the army (i.e. Bike Captain, Logan, etc.). Now there is a pretty bloody obvious one for BA but a couple of not so obvious ones, too.

Let’s do the obvious one. Blood Chalice. FNP/FC 6” bubbles. What? FNP/FC 6” bubbles. For anything? Yes. Well. Okay! The immediate reaction is a whole army of FNP marines = awesome followed up by FNP bikes or Termies? Amazing! Add in FC across the army and you have an army wide assault competency and amazing survivability. This makes armies like Drop Pods or Rhino rush viable as all of those 3+ bodies can survive a lot more and then punch better in combat. Should you leave home without them? Generally not. Most of them are on Sang Priests and although their IC status lets them be picked out in combat, hiding them in Rhinos/RBacks/LRs is pretty easy. However, if you are not running many bodies the 50pt investment is not always worth it. Blood Chalices can also be found in Honor Guard squads (much like SM Command squads). The advantage of this is the Chalice cannot be picked out in combat but cannot hide in large squads (max of 5) and can’t change their armor type (i.e. no Termie armor). Sang Priests are therefore a good place to start with HG squads to fill out your bubble coverage. The Priests are able to move about more freely and often the Chalice is just a bonus to the HG squad which can take 4 special weapons.
So that was obvious but what about the rest? I’ve included Librarians, Dante, Death Company and Stormravens here. Let’s start with Stormravens.

When one takes Stormravens, you need to build your army around them. Without doing so you’re not getting the most out of them. They cost a ton of points and give the BA army something unique (a fast skimmer with an assault ramp!?) and it can transport an infantry unit and a Dreadnought. This might be the answer to dual raider? Possibilities... Digressing, this opens up a completely different army style much like the Marine Captain on a bike does. Combine with a locator beacon and/or DSing/Outflanking units and you’ve got a very Tyranid like in your face army with FNP bubbles, MEQ statlines and armor. Not too bad!

Death Company are not a unit I like. 20pts for a Marine w/FNP, relentless, FC and rage is pretty good but eh well ya. I can pretty much keep most of my Marines w/FNP/FC anyways and they can’t take any heavy weapons to make use of that relentless. Add in rage and if you start adding more than 1 or 2 combat weapons and your opponent will literally make these guys run around in circles. So why are they in here? Well, they give you access to DC Dreads which are pretty awesome. The only way to stop these guys is to immobilise+ them. They can chew threw any type of infantry squad with blood talons and these guys can add an excellent CC element to a Drop Pod army. This to me also makes Astorath wasteful unless you’re after the higher chance of Red Thirst.

Dante is one of those FoC changers by adding in Sang Guard as Troops. Not really woohoo eh but can make an army that requires high S and low AP weapons to actually ding it as small arms just gets laughed at by tanks and 2+/FNP. I’m not a particular fan of this list as armies like Guard can just tear through it. However, Dante in a normal list can be pretty good utility in being a very reliable drop for melta & FNP bubble whilst de-buffing an opposing character significantly whilst also having a pretty decent statline (W4!).

And onto the unit everyone really wants to talk about, the Librarian/Furioso Libby. Obviously this provides you with psy-defense but also allows you to really go to town with your lists. Mech lists suddenly get a 5+ cover and you can still use another power w/o a 50 pt upgrade. Blood lance screws up castling. Wings gives combat Dreads the ability to keep up with mech lists (so no need to rely on Pods for DC Dreads) though you lose blood talons. Sword and Heroes make excellent CC powers and unleash rage can replace a Chaplain for important CC units. Libbys allow you to tailor a specific need or cover a weakness within your army and the ability to take 5 is pretty damn awesome though that becomes a lot of points quickly and the added ability to have them in Elites and as an AV13 walker? Thanks GW. Libbies should be taken to tie your army together whilst adding punch + psy defense (i.e. Mech w/Shield & Blood Lance).

So no real army wide buffs like BT or Tyranids w/Pref Enemy but more point buffs like Tervigons w/FNP and FC. This is huge as it really changes the dynamic of Marines in combat and allows them to work; no one likes lots of little squads with FC swamping yours guys isn’t fun. Over and above that, BA have certain units such as Stormravens or DC which fit into a certain army style and play a certain way or Dante who adds to any army but in a very particular way. Add in the ability of Librarians to buff army weaknesses, provide uber firepower, psychic defense and particular unit buffing and you may not have the synergy of Tyranids but BA is certainly a sum more than its parts.

12 pinkments:

Chumbalaya said...

Gotta love that synergy, I think that's why I like BA so much.

I will make a good Bloodwing army, eventually.

The_King_Elessar said...

Not a bad summary. Honour Guard can have 8 Special Weapons - they can only use 4 a turn though.

Kirby said...

Not really happy with this write-up so may look at it again later today.

The_King_Elessar said...

The opening should read "Force multipliers are fun. Fun squared, in fact."

Apart from that, it's grand. :)

Drathmere said...

love the article. Pretty stoked you chose one of my honor guard members as your header image! I suppose I should finally paint the base. :)

Kirby said...

I really should stop google imaging and start referencing my pictures...:P.

Surreptitious Muffin said...

Am I the only one distinctly unimpressed with the storm raven? I guess being a Tau player I'm not so reliant on melta, but it seems incredibly, incredibly expensive for something with a front AV of 12. Sure they can assault quickly, but only if you're not using screens properly.

People say "Oooh but they can DS or fly over your screens." I reiterate: if they can do that and get a positive result out of it, you're not using your screens properly.

Kirby said...

Ya they really need a catapult so they can throw Dreadnoughts through screens :). I might see if I can throw a list together which replaces Raiders w/Storm Ravens.

Something like...
2x Raven
10x Termies
2x Priest
2x Libby
2x ASM
2x Libby Dread

potential but I think execution will fall short again.

Surreptitious Muffin said...

If you're going so infantry light, the priests might not be such a good investment. Maybe just have the one and give your ASM something shiny. Can they take melta?

Kirby said...

THose ASM are 10 strong w/2x melta and PFist. FNP/FC termies are pretty nasty but I still think if you want termies go with Vanilla and other than Stelek's list for Ravens I can't really find a Stormraven list I like. Even that one is more fun than awesome.

Surreptitious Muffin said...

Yeah. Ravens seem cool but not all powerful. I'm wondering how well the DS Vanguard/Sanguinary Guard/ASM jumper bomb would work. It certainly seems like the nastiest in the right hands.

The_King_Elessar said...

I don't think it's doable...so I'll go off and try. lmao

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