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"Pink isn't a color. It's a lifestyle." - Chumbalaya
"...generalship should be informing list building." - Sir Biscuit
"I buy models with my excess money" - Valkyrie whilst a waitress leans over him

Friday, July 30, 2010

Email in: Achieving a balance between competitiveness and cost [Orks]

"Hey there Kirby,

As I'm sure you know, many n00bs don't often have a competitive army, and instead go for whatever looks coolest. Then these players are driven away from the idea of competitiveness when they suddenly realise that all their expensive and prettily painted models are all useless in their new lists.

I am in this situation. You see, I had the misfortune of following the Dakkadakka Ork tactica, and buying models on its advice. Then I started reading around some of the more competitive blog sites, and figured out that my army might not work so well.

So now I have a couple of choices. Firstly, I can continue building my footslogger list, use it for fun, then build a nice Guard or Space Marines list, or I can instead contact someone with a fair bit of experience, and ask for some help in salvaging a decent list out of what I have.

As you can see, I've chosen to try out the second one. So here is my request: Create as an effective of a list that you can, by including models already bought.

Six boxes of Ork Boyz (not Black Reach)
Two boxes of Lootas
Pain Boy
Warboss with 'Uge Choppa
Two Nobz (From Boyz boxes, but unassembled)

35 Ork Boyz armed with Shootas
Two Nobz armed with PK and BP
Three Big Shootas

And as a Chaos army on the side (all assembled):
Land Raider (Can be converted to BW with work)
Eight Tac Marines
12 Berserkers
Six Possessed
Four Terminators

Oh, and just as a note, I was planning on building a Kan Wall list. Something along the lines of (points are approximated):


15 Lootas
15 Lootas
15 Lootas

30 Shoota Boyz w/PK/BP Nob and three Big Shootas
30 Shoota Boyz w/PK/BP Nob and three Big Shootas
30 Shoota Boyz w/PK/BP Nob and three Big Shootas
10 Grots

3 Deffcoptas w/TL Rokkits

3 Killa Kans w/Rokkits
3 Killa Kans w/Rokkits
3 Killa Kans w/Grotzookas"

Hey Harry, sorry this took a while. LoT + aftermaths + reading the same argument over and over again in the comments section of Puppy's articles! So let's just first straighten this out on what my stance on Orks is. Orks don't compete well with the 'top' armies such as IG/Tau/Eldar/DE/SM variants mainly because of the investment level required to get somewhat decent anti-tank. So if you want to rank the armies arbitrarily they come out just below these guys but ahead of the terrible armies like Daemons, Necrons, etc. So whilst I would never recommend starting an Orks army, you're not without options.

So in regards to what you've got and what you want. A Kan wall isn't bad but is going to lack mobility. You can get decent anti-tank through your Kanz, Fast Attack and Lootas but unless you can close with your opponent, not much you can actually do to damage them. Huge Ork mobs also have problems in being blocked, shuffled or simply having too big of a foot print to get into combat and deal significant damage. Problem with small mobs is they get run off the table. We also want to add some more Deffkoptas (or Buggies) to give you more mobility. So we're going to stick with your basic overall list but basically tweak it.

2x Mek w/KFF is 170 and this also opens up 2 Dreads as Troops which we should consider. Whilst they don't score, it's another 2 rather strong vehicles in combat that just keep walking towards you. 3 Squads of lootas at 12 strong are 540. This is smaller than max it saves a bit of points and still gives you a decently reliable anti-tank platform. We'll skip troops for the moment and drop over to the Fast Attack. Here's where we get some TL'd rokkits. Deffkoptas add some versatility in being able alpha strike but are 10 more pts expensive + the buzzsaw. For the moment let's take 3 squads as they are cheaper in monetary terms than Buggies (easy to get off e-bay). 3 squads of 3 w/rokkits & buzzsaw sets us back 480 points. We've used 1190 already w/o Kanz or Troops.

Luckily Kanz are cheap and 9 of them sets us back 315 before weapons. Grotzookas or Rokkits are the best bets and because we are taking deffkoptas let's go with Rokkits. We can change some of these later if we need. That's 3x3 Kanz w/Rokkits setting us back 450 leaving us only with 360 points for Troops. Not enough for Dreads if we want to score! We want at least 3 squads of Boyz prob around 20 strong as a good balance between size and being unwiedly. We'd also like a small gretchin squad to screen the Kanz but KFF also works so not really vital. A squad of 20 w/2x Rokkits, Nob w/PK & BP = 180 points so we are short 180 points.

We'll just have to deal with that at 2000 points or drop a KFF Mech (which I'm happy to do but you need to be very precise in your movement and are vulnerable to disruption). So whilst there's a lot of scary vehicles mini-dreads, decent anti-tank with 9 TL rokkits, 36 lootas & 13 rokkits (9 @ BS3) mobility can still be an issue and you don't have a huge amount of Troops to swarm your enemy. Luckily your Kanz are leading to take the brunt of anything and allow your Boyz to mass charge afterward. If you wanted to save some points you could drop the deffkoptas to Buggies but is a bit more expensive money wise. If you wanted to push this to 2500 you could add the 2 Deff Dreads and some more Boyz + expand the Loota squads to 15 each.

In regards to the Chaos/SM list, I'd go SM because it's a better book but you don't have a good selection of models. Off the top of my head a Biker list might be the cheapest as you can get Ravenwing Battleforces. 6 of these + some conversions gives you enough bikes to make a pure bike force and you've then got 6 Speeders to expand the force with (i.e. Fast'N'Slow).

10 pinkments:

Brother Loring said...

As if we needed more ork debate! Sorry... will go and read the post now!

Chumbalaya said...

Kanwall is doable, but as Kirby said your problems include mobility, AV14, and the typical Ork problems.

I did the same as you, grabbed a ton of Orks when the book came out and now I only use a handful of 'em.

2x KFF Mek
3x 15 Lootas
3x 20 Shootas, 2 big shootas, PK Nob
2x Dreads w/ skorchas, armor, riggers
10 Grots + runtherd
3x 3 Rokkit Kanz

That's 2000. Lootas and Kanz generate a good deal of S7/8, but are obviously hampered by volume (so many Lootas, so few good placements) and squadron rules respectively. Shootas are exclusively anti-infantry because let's not fool ourselves, 2 rokkits is not anti-mech. Dreads are for lols and a surprisingly effective counter assault unit.

If you want something more competitive, lose the Dreads and a Mek in favor of Wazdakka, Bikers and Koptaz. Ork Biker lists with dakka in support are actually pretty good.

Kirby said...

I might also lose the Shootas for larger and more squads of Bikers there Chumb and add in some Buggies/Koptas. But then that's looking a lot like the 'balanced' Ork list.

VT2 said...

Shootas are necessary for orks to achieve something once they're midfield.

They also let you act in more phases, and that's always good.

All that's really needed for something that works is a bunch of trukks, looted wagons, or battlewagonz.
Load them up with shootaboyz, and hope things work out in your favor.

Tough, I know, but that's the cheapest way to get something out of the items already available.

Lootas are mandatory, as are buggies/trakks, or koptas.
You really need as many of them as you can fit in, without compromising your count of boyz.

I'd do something like...

mek with field.

3x[as many lootas that you can fit in]

3x20 boys with shootas.
nobz, with dedicated wagon.
2x12 shoota boys in trukks.

3xas many rocket buggies as possible.

triple battlewagonz.

If you love foot, invest in kans and dreads that can walk in front of your tide.
This makes the boyz survive another turn, which is enough to get the drop on many people.

It's true that orks are bad, but they're not so bad that they're hopeless.

Jason said...

I've encountered similar problems. Still trying to find a balance.

I find my army gets crowded a lot, but if I reserve things, I get destroyed piecemeal.

VT2 said...

Less foot, more junktrucks.

You need speed, but the speed has to be reliable and somewhat consistent.
Trukks, trakks, buggies, battlewagons, looted wagons.
You're open topped pretty much everywhere, and while it's true that that's mostly a weakness these days, you still should take advantage of it, by shooting from inside your vehicles for as long as it's benefical to do so.

Burna boyz, nobz with kombi-skorchas, shoota boyz with a million dice for each unit, lootas in stationary wagons/looted wagonz. It adds up pretty quickly.

pika-power said...

I've thought about my list, and here's the revised version.

KFF Mek w/'eavy armour
KFF Mek w/'eavy armour
12 Lootas
12 Lootas
12 Lootas
3 Warbuggies w/3 TL Rokkits
3 Warbuggies w/3 TL Rokkits
3 Warbuggies w/3 TL Rokkits
3 Killa Kanz w/3 Rokkits
3 Killa Kanz w/3 Rokkits
3 Killa Kanz w/3 Rokkits
20 Boyz w/2 Big Shootas, PK/BP Nob
20 Boyz w/2 Big Shootas, PK/BP Nob
20 Boyz w/2 Big Shootas, PK/BP Nob

I reduced the Koptas down to buggies, as I felt the Buzzsaws weren't particularly important, being S7 only. Also, I downgraded the Rokkits in the Boyz mob to Big Shootas, because Rokkits in a Boyz mob wastes the rest of the firepower.

@ VT2
I have nothing against moving onto a mech list. I'd rather be told that now, than after spending even more on unusable models.

VT2 said...

Think of rokkits for boyz like combi-meltas for marines.
You may not ever even use them, due to running, spending a lot of time up close, or shooting at infantry, but it's better to have them than not to.

Sometimes, you get lucky, and manage to destroy a close rhino with rokkits. This leaves the passengers vulnerable to assault from the boyz.
Plus, rokkits still hurt infantry. A hit is pretty much a guaranteed kill, and that's not too bad.

Yeah, meched-up orks is the way to go.
It's still not great, or even truly good, but it's good enough to last - for now.

You can pick up horribly painted land raiders for cheap from ebay, and battlecannon Leman Russes, too.
Cleaning them isn't really necessary, since you're likely going to take a saw to them, and puzzle things together to make battlewagonz.
Just never, ever buy the overpriced, meter long thing GW sells.

That aside, using tanking killa kans as a screen for large numbers of boyz works somewhat.
It's not as reliable as putting things in vehicles, because speed comes from random run rolls, and you're still not truly protected from shooting, but the kans tend to last a turn or two, and by then, you're most likely on top of the opponent, or midfield, where you can sit and shoot things with your basic weapons.
A build like this gets a lot out of troop dreadnoughts. More screening walkers equals better survivability of the screened stuff.

Remember, any buggies or koptas you bring in a kan wall army will die very, very quickly, because they're the only fast thing in your entire army, and the opponent knows this.
Make sure you get the most out of them while they're still alive.

The_King_Elessar said...

I much prefer Buggies to Koptas, but I'm an old-skool Speed Freek.

Still - last time I even USED Koptas was an Apoc game. 12 of them, vs a Dark Angel battleforce in a neat 12" line. Good times. ;0

Kirby said...

It's like varrying your deployment is a good thing rather than lining up against your opponent!

I'm a deffkopta fan for their alpha strike ability but both are good for what they do. Mobile, TL'd rokkits.

@Pika; the list is solid but as said is still going to suffer from mobility issues. In a 'friendly' environment it would be very good and in a competitive environment you're not going to get washed away but that's the same with a more balanced Wazdakka led list. The good thing about both of those lists is you can easily get both but since you've got a bunch of boyz already and want to keep it on the cheap the Kanz option might be cheaper but as VT2 said you can get a lot of stuff off e-bay.

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