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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

Monday, July 4, 2011

Email in: Mech Dark Angels


"Hi! Grand Master Raziel here, regular contributor to Warseer and B&C, but this is my first time throwing something your way. I've been reading your blog a lot lately, because I love 40K. I'm pretty good at the game, but could be better, and it seems like reading your blog will help me get better.

One of the things I read with some interest was a sample Mech Marine list. Being a DA player, I got to wondering if I could do something similar with Codex: Dark Angels. I imagine the obvious question is why would I bother? Well, we DA players are stubborn sunzabitches, and we'd rather take our gimped old dex and beat you with it than stoop to using Codex: Ultramarines. Besides, it was an interesting exercise in list-building. So, with that in mind, here it is.

1500pt hypothetical Dark Angels tournament mech list


Company Veterans: Sgt+8 Vets, 2xPF, meltagun, multimelta

Tac Squad 1: 9 Marines, meltagun, multimelta, Sgt wt plasma pistol

Tac Squad 2: 4 Marines, flamer, Sgt wt power weapon
Razorback: TLHB

Tac Squad 3: 4 Marines, flamer, Sgt wt power weapon
Razorback: TLHB

Ravenwing Typhoon: multimelta

Ravenwing Typhoon: multimelta

Devastator Squad: 4 Marines, 4 missile launchers, Sgt wt no upgrades
Razorback: TLHB

dakka Predator

dakka Predator

Here are the thought processes that went into the various choices I made:

The Chaplain: We have to have an HQ choice, and what we've got that's both worthwhile and can be stuck in a Rhino is kind of limited. The bog-standard Chaplain is ready to go for base points, and meshes nicely with the reasons I bought the Company Vet Squad I did. Plus, we get the last of the non-nerfed Chaplains.

Company Vets: The usual Mech Marine list is built around two multimelta-toting Tac Squads in Rhinos, used to control midfield. The thing about vanilla Marines is that a big part of how vanilla players deal with large-magnitude threats is by using Combat Tactics to fall back from things regular Tac Squads can't cope with. That's not an option for us, so I figured the DA version either had to have units that could handle pretty much anything or be small enough to not afford big gribblies much time hiding out in combat with them. The Company Vet squad is the manifestation of handling pretty much anything. With the Chaplain linked up with them and pistol+ccw given to all the non-upgraded squaddies, that squad will control the heck out of midfield. Anything dippy enough to peel open their Rhino to get at them will instantly regret doing so.

Tac Squad 1: Here we start to see the other design philosophy manifest. Tac 1 is intented to be combat squadded. The demi-squad with the multimelta rides in the Rhino and rolls to midfield to play area-denial with the Company Vets. The demi-squad with the Sergeant and the meltagun shanghais the Dev Squad's Razorback for a ride.

Tac Squads 2 and 3: We may have to pay a minimum of 10pts too much for virtually everything, but one thing we've got going for us is that our small squads can be something more than a vehicle upgrade to a Razorback. These little squads ought to be able to mop up squads that have been weakened by the shooting this list can put forth. Their Razorbacks help with the overall long-range firepower

Typhoons: Extra missile launchers plus high-speed multimeltas are pretty self-explanatory. We get them a little cheaper than a vanilla player would get them, and they take the transport-popping role rifleman Dreads would take in a vanilla list.

Devastator Squad: The list needed one more track than I could get from the Tacs and the Company Vets, thus the Dev Squad. The Devs can also help with transport-popping duties, and force opponents to make somewhat difficult target-priority decisions.

dakka Preds: Also pretty self-explanatory. They're good tanks that pump out a lot of firepower for the price."

Pretty solid for Dark Angels with a few things that aren't really needed. Power Weapons on the Tac Sarges and Plasma Pistol being the most obvious. Power Weapons on basic Marines aren't going to scare anyone and the plasma pistol is 15 points for a single S7 no thanks. The large Vet squad + Chaplain as well is eh. Whilst with the Chaplain they are going to poke quite a few things in combat through torrent of attacks, those attacks are all WS/S/I 4 and you have no invulnerable saves. Any dedicated combat units are going to just laugh and deal with them appropriately.

Everything else is pretty nice though I personally wouldn't take the BolterBacks. Ranged anti-infantry is nice but unlike the Grey Knight Psyback you don't have any duality against tanks. What you're generally lacking though is melta with only the single Tac squad capable of putting out melta shots. Whilst you are combat squadding them, your anti-tank isn't terrific with 4 melta weapons (though two on ranged platforms) and eight S8 shots across three units. The Dakka Preds add some more anti-tank but not much so we need to upgrade this.

We've got two real options. Terminators or small Vet squads. We aren't going to have the points for multiple Terminator squads and they move away from the pure mech army in favor of a Thunderbubble style (TH/SS with CML? Yes please! lol). Small Vet squads can take two melta weapons (meltagun and multi-melta) plus three combi-meltas. For 155 points you can get a melta, MM and Rhino on 5 vets. Pretty good so let's take two in place of the large Vet squad you had before and then replace the Chaplain with a basic Captain. You could take a Libby for a Hood but DA powers suck and with the Captain you at least get Rites of Battle.

With this change you've gained another vehicle and two more melta units within Rhinos. There will be some points leftover from the dropped wargear on the Tactical squads so you can add some combi-melta or other upgrades here and there. It's pretty comparable to a Mech Marine list at the same points but with less ranged firepower (no Rifledreads or LasPlas) but more mobile melta options.

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