Friday, September 27, 2013

Rock, Paper, Space Marines

Everyone has done their research on the new marine codex and it seems to be that GW has continued down the path of Rock, Paper, Scissors in list options.  Space Marines have all the options to deal with any enemy list.  They can deal with flyer spam, monsterous creature spam, mech spam, or model spam.  Can the handle them at the same time in the dream all comers list?  Probably not, I am not expecting them to be auto win but it still seems like they are pretty meh.  They got flyers, anti air missiles, and anti air tanks to kill flyers but they made the missiles so expensive and the anti air tanks very specific making flyers the only really general choice to deal with enemy air outside weapon emplacements.  Bringing enough anti air to deal with 5 flyers pretty much cripples the rest of the force.  The new grav weapons will probably put the hurt on monsterous creatures and maybe some vehicles but they made them either only available on the new ugly model or obviously really good on bikes.  They are actually useless on the daemon MC armies which is a big issue for people to remember.

The new codex brings back essentially the Chapter Traits from 4th edition with less freedom for home brew but the individual abilities are mostly better and already costed into the model.  None of the Chapter Tactics are really game changers and it seems like the models that people used before will be the ones that stay on the field.   The way the tactics are written they generally only benefit one part of the army so I expect to see lots of space marine contingents optimized to their chapter tactics as allies.  Marines did not seem very popular as the core codex in the competitive scene for a few years.  I doubt this will change outside a few very specific builds.

The lists out there look always to find some gimmick in the codex or bargain model/combination and over load it.  Any weakness can then be covered by picking the best units for that out of another codex as your allies.  Bringing 4 giant battle suits making up like 60% of your points should be a pathway to failure for a game with balance not the pathway to easy wins.  Maybe I expect too much where you could actually select several unit from each class the can really cover multiple threats such that if you just built an army based on models you had you could compete.  It should be much harder to pick the winners and losers in each slot.  Look at the Vanguard marines, compared to 4th ed assault marines they get terminator honors for free and people still think their meh.  Why, probably because to get them to actually be able to do anything other than kill guard swarms or orks you need to pay through the nose for special weapons but then they get too valuable and you have to pay more for extra defense.  And if jump pack vanguard are meh and they essentially get the pack for nothing what about my 20 foot vanguard from 4th and 5th edition.  They might as well go into the recycle bin.

Any I wrong here?  Can you build effective lists using broad ranges of models or do you have to find those optimally priced units and overload on that threat? Here is approximate list of units, infantry units have all the options but cannot general spam any specific option (ie I have 2 combi meltas not 10), Have a go making a solid single detachment force at 1750:

Any HQ Characters
1 Foot Command
1 Honour Guard
4 Termis
1 Assault Termi
2 Sternguard
2 Foot Vanguard
1 Jump Vanguard
2 Dreads (no autocannons)
6 Tacs
4 Scouts
2 Assault Marines
1 Bike
2 Landspeeders
3 Devastator
2 Vindi
2 Predators
4 Rhinos Chassis available as 1 Whirlwind, 2 Razorbacks
1 Landraider Crusader

Almost easier to list what I do not have: Thunderfire, Flyers, Landspeeder Storm, Centurions, God Hammer, Stalker/Hunter.

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