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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

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Blood Angels and Rhinos. I present my case.

Hello people. This fine evening I'm going to be talking about Blood Angels. I've been doing some playtesting with them lately, using builds that you wont find in places like this. I've been pushing boundaries and stuff (and wearing black, also listening to linkin park), just to see what I could come up with. So, what did I come up with, you ask (or maybe you don't, cause you're just on here killing time when you're bored, or have something better you really should be doing)? Well, the main thing I've been testing is rhinos over razorbacks. And honestly, I think I'm sold.

Why? Well, the main (read:only) advantage over a Razorback is the fire point. Well, that and self repair (which is funny when it happens). Ok, AND it's 5pts cheaper. But the main one is the fire point. It's actually a pretty massive advantage. Today, I'm going to try and get folks to open their heart to the rhino, because it's waiting outside with a present. A big present that's very heavy, and it wants to come in and put it down. And that present is love.

Err, sorry, too many cartoons. Ok, so while 5pts cheaper doesn't sound like much, over 6 units that's 30pts. In my current army build for example, if I was using TLHF razorbacks, I'd be down a landspeeder. Quite often an amount of points like that mean you can fit something entirely new into the army. It's not a big selling point, but it's nice. You also get the stormbolter. Don't laugh! Stormbolters are actually not bad, especially when you have 8 of them running around. They're good for picking on squads you've de-meched, especially if you're fighting IG or (Dark) Eldar. You can also use them to clear (most) bubblewrap. As most bubblewrap doesn't have better than a 5+ save. Of course cover comes into it, but 16 bolter shots are bound to help. People tend to ignore the threat of stormbolters (until it's too late) which is a major advantage, means they can expose infantry squads and not even realise it. Never forget to fire them.

Alright, we're here. The fire point. This is huge. The first use of it is you can pull some cheeky movement shenanigans and such by turning your rhinos around on various angles. It can buy you an extra inch, and (more importantly) get the hatch around a corner while keeping the rhino in cover. Means your opponents don't get cover and you do, which is nice. You can also see over stuff your infantry wouldn't normally be able to (also nice), which includes your own tank walls more often than not. In addition the above movement shenanigans (the rhino swivel), you can do an extended version of this that I've found. Getting your marines to move 6", hop in a rhino and fire from the fire point. From the embarking distance this can (it's happened twice for me) buy you an extra few inches to get you in range/into half range for melta. It's a nice perk.

Of course, the big, blaring, elephant sized neon sign of an advantage I've been dancing about (not at all to increase word count) is the simple fact that by having a firepoint you don't have to disembark to fire. This is MASSIVE. In the attrition game, it's huge. Lets have some picturey examples!

Ok, here you can see my Lamenters in razorbacks facing off against some Meltavets in chimeras!

I move up, disembark, blow up one chimmy and flamer the contents, and immobilise the other one.
In return the IG blow up my LoS blocking Razorback (gotta love AP1) and send strong fire (including lots of melta) into both of my squads. It's unlikely I'll have many (if any) marines left after that. They ignore the other razorback as it isn't a major threat (at all) to a chimera.
Ok so here we have some Flesh Tearers (hey Katie) in rhinos, facing up against the same opposition.

The rhinos move up, do some pivoty shenanigans and (for fairness sake) blow up one chimera and immobilise the other. I realise there would be more melta vets left, but it makes no difference for this example.

The Guard move up and blow up both of my rhinos, and send some firepower into the marines. However as my rhinos were around to take some heat for my squads, I will have some marines left to play with.

The tearers move up, shoot the chimeras and then the orange squad multi assaults and the green squad assaults the chimmy it didn't kill in the shooting phase, takes it out (it's just an example) and forces the IG inside to disembark.

Now you have to realise this is of course a very idealistic and not at all realistic example, however it does convey the principle. The great thing about not needing to get out is the tank absorbs firepower for your units, meaning that in an attrition war such as this one, you're one step above your opponent.

Hopefully now more of you will have a look at the humble rhino. Of course, it's bread and butter for C:SM, but not often used in Blood Angel or Space Wolf lists. Space Wolves are another strong contender, 5 Grey Hunters w/Melta, Wolf Guard w/Combi Melta + a Rhino is a very strong unit. Especially in numbers.

Hope you guys enjoyed the article!

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