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Made in us
Longtime Dakkanaut




Ute nation

To grossly paraphrase Reece from FLG, list that are effective in the competitive meta have a few things in common and one of them is the ability to create space. This is usually accomplished by screens, which is to say cheap bodies that prevent charges and deep strikes. The most famous screen right now is conscripts at 4pts per model, which is a slightly deceptive price since they need to be supported to be effective, but we will go with it. A screen has two important attributes, frontage and effective HP, and it's useful to think of those on a per points basis.

Effective HP is easy enough to calculate, you take the number of wounds per model, then divide that by the chance of taking a wound. Assuming Str: 4 AP: - (EG most of the weapons that are good at clearing screens)
Primaris marines: 2/(1/2 * 1/3) = 12 EHP at 18 points a model that's 1.5 points per 1 EHP.
Conscripts: 1/(2/3 * 5/6) = 1.8 EHP at 4 points a model that's 2.2 points per 1 EHP

So Primaris marines are tougher screens both in relative and absolute terms, having about 32% more EHP per point invested, and that's before other advantages like better leadership.

Frontage is just a little harder to calculate, as you have to take into account the individual units frontage and the additional frontage that comes from a min sized units. So you take the base size and add an inch, then you divide two inches by the minimum unit size and add that gives you frontage per unit.
Primaris marines are on 32 mm bases, so about 1.25 Inches. min unit size is 5, for .4 inches, for a total of 1.65 inches per 18 points, so about 10.9 points per inch of frontage.
Conscripts are on 25 mm bases, so about 1 inch per model. min unit size is 20, so .1 inches, for a total of 1.1 inches per 4 points, so about 3.6 points per inch of frontage.

So Conscripts are almost 3 times as cost effective per inch of frontage.

Should be case closed, marines have a minor advantage in terms of durability but get skunked in terms of frontage. But I think there are army configurations where a smaller screen, that's tougher, and more offensive/Close combat capable screen could be advantageous. Armies that rely on concentration (ie: have lots of short ranged weapons) have smaller frontage requirements, as do mobile armies that are just huddling up to prevent first turn alpha strike. I think Primaris marines are the best screen Space marines have, being much better in terms of toughness than scouts and tactical marines, and very similar in terms of frontage.Though in all fairness I suspect that won't matter much to the competitive scene since mono-faction armies will be an infrequent visitor to the winners circle at in 8th ed, but I think it the idea of primaris screens might give monofaction marine lists a reason to use primaris outside of the shint and new factor. What do you guys think?

Necrons - 4k
Dark angels - 2k


"You know what they say about brute force, if it's not working you are not using enough of it" 
   
Made in us
Regular Dakkanaut




Calculating the effective hit points using a Str 4 AP 0 Damage 1 weapon is a huge mistake.

High strength, high AP, multiple damage weapons are plentiful and ANY amount of AP disproportionately hurts models with good armor (i.e. a -1 weapon forcing you to go from a 2+ to a 3+ is much worse than going from a 5+ to a 6+).

Yes, there are many "regular" weapons in any given list, and Primaris marines will fare better against that, but every "special" weapon will kill the Primairs Marinea and Guardsman equally well, and therein lies your huge loss of value.

Add in the fact that anti-horde weapons (the former template weapons) no longer exist and it is strictly superior to run many weak models than one strong one. I see in Age of Sigmar it's much more common for AoE style weapons to have a rule which increases their number of shots when targeting a unit with 10+ models, something like that for 40k would be a large step in the right direction IMO.
   
Made in nl
Longtime Dakkanaut




1) No one uses conscripts these days, not when you can use real Guardsmen at 4 points per model.

2) A Guardsman or Conscript has a 5+ save.

3) An S4 AP0 hit will kill 1.5 points of Intercessor, 1.8 points of Guardsman, 2.5 points of Ork boy or 2.7 points of Firewarrior.

An S5 AP-1 hit will kill 3 points of Intercessor, 2.2 points of Guardsman, 4 points of Ork boy or 3.6 points of Firewarrior

An S8 AP-3 D2 will kill 12.5 points of Intercessor, 3.3 points of Guardsman, 5 points of Ork boy or 6.7 points of Firewarrior.

I think it is pretty obvious, why the humble Guardsmen are the best screen in the game. A guardsman is very durable against any combination of S, AP and damage, Firewarriors and Boyz are mediocre against every combination , whereas an Intercessor is very durable against small arms but folds like wet paper against anything with multi-damage.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
Lanlaorn wrote:


Add in the fact that anti-horde weapons (the former template weapons) no longer exist and it is strictly superior to run many weak models than one strong one. I see in Age of Sigmar it's much more common for AoE style weapons to have a rule which increases their number of shots when targeting a unit with 10+ models, something like that for 40k would be a large step in the right direction IMO.


Template weapons were never anti-horde weapons. There never were a time where a demolisher or earthshaker cannon killed Guardsmen more effectively than it killed Marines.

Anti-horde weapons has always been any weapon with low S and little-to-no AP. The reason that S4 AP0 weapons are less effective at killing Guardsmen than at killing Tacticals is simply because Guardsmen are undercosted compared to Tacticals. If Guardsman were 5 points and Tacticals 10 points, then flamers and bolters would suddenly become effective anti-horde weapons. The "no-effective-anti-horde-weapon-in-8th" issue is strictly about points, nothing more.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2017/12/29 20:11:52


 
   
Made in us
Longtime Dakkanaut




Ute nation

pismakron wrote:
1) No one uses conscripts these days, not when you can use real Guardsmen at 4 points per model.

2) A Guardsman or Conscript has a 5+ save.

3) An S4 AP0 hit will kill 1.5 points of Intercessor, 1.8 points of Guardsman, 2.5 points of Ork boy or 2.7 points of Firewarrior.

An S5 AP-1 hit will kill 3 points of Intercessor, 2.2 points of Guardsman, 4 points of Ork boy or 3.6 points of Firewarrior

An S8 AP-3 D2 will kill 12.5 points of Intercessor, 3.3 points of Guardsman, 5 points of Ork boy or 6.7 points of Firewarrior.

I think it is pretty obvious, why the humble Guardsmen are the best screen in the game. A guardsman is very durable against any combination of S, AP and damage, Firewarriors and Boyz are mediocre against every combination , whereas an Intercessor is very durable against small arms but folds like wet paper against anything with multi-damage.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
Lanlaorn wrote:


Add in the fact that anti-horde weapons (the former template weapons) no longer exist and it is strictly superior to run many weak models than one strong one. I see in Age of Sigmar it's much more common for AoE style weapons to have a rule which increases their number of shots when targeting a unit with 10+ models, something like that for 40k would be a large step in the right direction IMO.


Template weapons were never anti-horde weapons. There never were a time where a demolisher or earthshaker cannon killed Guardsmen more effectively than it killed Marines.

Anti-horde weapons has always been any weapon with low S and little-to-no AP. The reason that S4 AP0 weapons are less effective at killing Guardsmen than at killing Tacticals is simply because Guardsmen are undercosted compared to Tacticals. If Guardsman were 5 points and Tacticals 10 points, then flamers and bolters would suddenly become effective anti-horde weapons. The "no-effective-anti-horde-weapon-in-8th" issue is strictly about points, nothing more.


I often find visualizations helpful when discussing these kind of topics so here is one:

Spoiler:


With four axis it's a little messy, so I'll quickly go over what we are looking at, for the sake of sanity I took the absolute value of of AP, and used the weapons strength -4 so we didn't have a half used axis. The first thing you notice is that most "Good" weapons have a pyramid shape to them, good str good AP and good damage, but a RoF close to 1. You'll also notice the bottom half is woefully underpopulated.

Before we get into the real advantage that AM has, let's take a moment to talk about target profiles:

Heavy vehicle: (LRBT, Land raider) very high toughness, many wounds, good save, single model. The best weapons to take them on don't care about RoF, and instead need STR, AP and damage.
Light Vehicle: (Rhinos, CCB) High toughness, many wounds, mediocre save, single model. The best weapons to take them out have middling AP, do multiple wounds or have a decent RoF, and a decent strength.
Heavy infantry: (Space marines, terminators) Low toughness, low wounds, good save, multiple models. The best weapon for this group are middling strength (more isn't bad, but it's largely wasted until 8 or so), good RoF, good AP, and damage per shot is mostly unimportant.
Light infantry: (guardians, Guardsmen) Low toughness, low wounds, bad save, large numbers. RoF is the king here, the rest are more or less window dressing.

Before 8th ed, template weapons served as the go to for dealing with light infantry, and they were so effective it all but killed high model count weenie lists like Orks and AM. During 8th ed, many of these former template weapons aren't very good at cleaning up light infantry, their RoF did not keep pace with model count increases, instead there is a relatively obscure class of weapons like hurricane bolters that function best in this role. Thus The real advantage AM has as screens is that the high throughput weapons like hurricane bolters, are more rare than low throughput weapons with good AP and str like plasma. Twin linked frag launchers will tickle primaris marines, but take out chunks of a guardsman screen.

To take a teency step beyond the immediate evidence, I think it's a problem with the meta as opposed to the rules. People are having a hard time seeing value in high RoF weapons that don't have other good stats, the new Strength to toughness formula makes low strength weapons more viable than they have ever been, and takes away a lot of the advantage mid strength weapons like scatter lasers used to have. I have to take off, but I think if people were more adventurous with high RoF weapons, we wouldn't have seeming balance issues with hordes.

Necrons - 4k
Dark angels - 2k


"You know what they say about brute force, if it's not working you are not using enough of it" 
   
Made in no
Powerful Ushbati





Bergen

While i agree with the op about a lotvof things, shurly guards do not yave the best screens.

Tyranids have 4 point fearless gaunta. 20 or 30 point unit of spore mine(s) that do not give up first blood. Biovores also can rain down movement denying.

SW has the lone cyber wolf at 15 points, easaly hidden out of line of sight.

While 30 orks is not a screen per say, ork bous forfill the same function.

Also, cheap transports can fall into the category screen, depending on how safe they keep the important part of your army. What is good about them is their transformation into screen for weqpons fire midgame.

I am a dyslectic, so bear with me.

Dyslectics in a text based environment? Dakka is aware of you and sympathises with any troubles you have: http://www.dakkadakka.com/dakkaforum/posts/list/505863.page

Kronos biovore box fresh sporemines. Denying psykick powers since 2017.

 
   
Made in us
Regular Dakkanaut




I think a takeaway here as well is that it entirely depends on your army setup. Yes there are multi damage weapons in the game. They aren't nearly as plentiful as so many people want to make it seem, though. If you are building your army primarily as Primaris, you'll want other vehicles, dreadnoughts, whatever to take away larger fire. Most people aren't going to use their multi damage weaponry to kill off basic infantry when a tank or dreadnought is coming down the line.

The thing with Conscripts and IG as a whole is that everything you fire at them is pretty easily decided where your shots go. High ROF, low damage and AP shots go to chaff. Lower ROF, high damage and AP shots go to armor. I think Primaris have the opportunity to help shift the game a little bit. Many people take a high volume of small arms shots as anti-horde. Primaris end up being a better unit against those. IG just happen to be REALLY efficient which is why they are doing so well.

I'm not gonna sit here and say Primaris are amazeballs, but they do have a place and will work better in some lists than others. You just have to understand what they are good and bad against and build for it. Force your opponent to prioritize his decisions, eventually making some people make mistakes. The more options you give people, the more likely they are to choose the wrong one. For example, my list consists of a group of Blood Angel Hellblasters and Inercessors with an Ancient with banner relic. Now my Primaris aren't just folding like nothing to 2 damage weapons. They are actually taking multiple 2 damage shots per model in many cases.

This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2017/12/30 02:34:39


 
   
Made in fi
Stalwart Veteran Guard Sergeant




[Expunged from Imperial records] =][=

The thing about screening units is that I don't really expect them to stay alive if my opponent decides to give them any attention.

There will be two possible outcomes.

A) They die. This doesn't concern me because they have already fulfilled their duty by that point.

B) They don't die. Hey, bonus. I can maybe use them for other purposes.

When you figure all this in, it becomes apparent that the greatest virtue of screening units is a good ratio between their point cost and the area they deny.

So, I would say that NuMarines can do screening but they don't do it effectively. Unless there is bottleneck.

"Be like General Tarsus of yore, bulletproof and free of fear!" 
   
Made in us
Longtime Dakkanaut




Ute nation

 RedCommander wrote:
The thing about screening units is that I don't really expect them to stay alive if my opponent decides to give them any attention.

There will be two possible outcomes.

A) They die. This doesn't concern me because they have already fulfilled their duty by that point.

B) They don't die. Hey, bonus. I can maybe use them for other purposes.

When you figure all this in, it becomes apparent that the greatest virtue of screening units is a good ratio between their point cost and the area they deny.

So, I would say that NuMarines can do screening but they don't do it effectively. Unless there is bottleneck.


There is one other consideration, if you are using all of the frontage provided by guardsmen, they lose frontage at a bit over 4 times the rate of primaris marines, so where a primaris screen would loose an inch and a half to a given amount of shooting, guardsman would lose about 6 inches. You can compensate for this by doubling up ranks, but at that point you are getting a little bit better frontage for a little bit worse overall toughness.

Necrons - 4k
Dark angels - 2k


"You know what they say about brute force, if it's not working you are not using enough of it" 
   
Made in us
Grey Knight Purgator firing around corners




 Grimgold wrote:


There is one other consideration, if you are using all of the frontage provided by guardsmen, they lose frontage at a bit over 4 times the rate of primaris marines, so where a primaris screen would loose an inch and a half to a given amount of shooting, guardsman would lose about 6 inches. You can compensate for this by doubling up ranks, but at that point you are getting a little bit better frontage for a little bit worse overall toughness.


Considering Guardsmen start with about 4x the effective screen 'frontage' area for the points, I think they still have Primaris Marines beat there.
   
Made in au
Unrelenting Rubric Terminator of Tzeentch





Considering that this is a hard return to being "the plasma edition", willingly putting expensive 3+ save 2W troops out as chaff for screening doesn't sound like a winning plan to me.

If you've got an elite army that needs less but more durable screening, well, that just means that you're willingly shoving the same quality of troops infront of bullets as what you're trying to save.

I just don't see how a screen of "elite chaff" is going to achieve anything other than being a point sink. If you need a unit to eat a charge, you want to surrender the least points possible. If you need to push back SUA units, you want them as far away from your valuable stuff as possible. On top of that, since guard are cheap, you're filling out battallions easily for CP while you're paying a premium for sigmarines to do the same.

By all means, try it out and let us know how it goes, but if I need to buy a turn to keep some 'zerkers out of my face and my choice is between losing 10 guardsmen or 5 sigmarines (since neither is going to be anything more than a red smear anyway), I see no point at all in throwing the expensive guys under the bus.

 Peregrine wrote:
What, you don't like rolling dice to see how many dice you roll? Why are you such an anti-dice bigot?
 
   
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Drifting Cronos Hungry for Souls




Italy

Primaris are meant to be super troops, soldiers with even more steroids than regular SM. They can't be effective screeners, and of course guardsmen are way better for than role.

Orks 9500
Space Wolves 6500
Drukhari 4500 
   
Made in ca
Longtime Dakkanaut




*Current meatspace coordinates redacted*

There's a fuzzy line between "screening" and "area denial". When we say "screening" we specifically mean " delaying the arrival of enemy assault units" then no, Primaris aren't ideal. However, they are pretty keen area denial units because they can take a lot of punishment, especial in cover.

He knows that I know and you know that he actually doesn't know the rules at all. 
   
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Fresh-Faced New User




Hoodwink wrote:
I think a takeaway here as well is that it entirely depends on your army setup. Yes there are multi damage weapons in the game. They aren't nearly as plentiful as so many people want to make it seem, though. If you are building your army primarily as Primaris, you'll want other vehicles, dreadnoughts, whatever to take away larger fire. Most people aren't going to use their multi damage weaponry to kill off basic infantry when a tank or dreadnought is coming down the line.

The thing with Conscripts and IG as a whole is that everything you fire at them is pretty easily decided where your shots go. High ROF, low damage and AP shots go to chaff. Lower ROF, high damage and AP shots go to armor. I think Primaris have the opportunity to help shift the game a little bit. Many people take a high volume of small arms shots as anti-horde. Primaris end up being a better unit against those. IG just happen to be REALLY efficient which is why they are doing so well.

I'm not gonna sit here and say Primaris are amazeballs, but they do have a place and will work better in some lists than others. You just have to understand what they are good and bad against and build for it. Force your opponent to prioritize his decisions, eventually making some people make mistakes. The more options you give people, the more likely they are to choose the wrong one. For example, my list consists of a group of Blood Angel Hellblasters and Inercessors with an Ancient with banner relic. Now my Primaris aren't just folding like nothing to 2 damage weapons. They are actually taking multiple 2 damage shots per model in many cases.


^ I think this hits the nail on the head. I wouldn't call Intercessors "chaff," but they are incredibly durable against small arms fire. They're basically designed to outshoot other troops. And if your opponent has to shoot at your intercessors with plasma, that means your hellblasters//inceptors are getting one more turn to put out the real damage - which is a win in my book. It's all about target saturation - force your opponent to only use 5% of his weapons as an effective way to deal with 90% of your army. Yes it can backfire if they stack the appropriate weapon, but that can just as easily backfire for them if they fight a completely different force.

I guess they aren't really a screen in the traditional sense, but they do a similar job: get in the way to mess with your opponent's plans and force them to make suboptimal decisions. To that end, they work very well. Primaris marines in cover take a lot of effort to shift, so the key is creating a situation where your opponent is forced to try - whether it's to clear an objective or to make an effective charge.
   
Made in us
Judgemental Grey Knight Justicar




Norfolk, VA

You also have to remember that there is a minimum "starting frontage" required. Many times the stuff you're screening has a big footprint (like a tank), so no matter how efficient your screen is it needs a minimum size.

Hope is the first step on the road to disappointment.
 
   
Made in us
Kid_Kyoto






Probably work

I think most of this has been said already, but I'll echo it.

No one uses conscripts any more.

I don't think your "Effective HP" model is as useful as you think it is because it doesn't take into account the prevalence of 2+ damage weapons and the fact that screens work by removing models from where the opponent doesn't want you to. Fewer models means that it's harder for me to allocate wounds to models away from a place that is useless to you, as the attacker.

A practical example:
Say you have 200 points remaining for your screen.
That's about 10 Intercessors, 18 Scouts, or 50 Infantry.
The intercessors you can reach about 1.25" (base width) + 2" (coherency) while the other two you can reach about 3" with. And if you want to be safe and prevent sneaky assaults, you have to probably go closer to 2.24" for primaris and 1.9" for the other two. So that means that 10 intercessors have a line about 22.4" stretched out. That's pretty good, but you have no redundancy. What happens the first time one dies? You're only 18 points away from a hole poked in your wall, and remember, you have to allocate wounds to damaged units first! It looks even bleaker when you consider how frequently you see plasma weapons, as a single successful supercharged shot will take out one of them right then and there.

The scouts have a line of about 34.2", but you can fold that around to be about 17.1 with a redundant line behind the other. Now, that's less distance per wound than the primaris, sure, but you have redundancy in models here. In this case I'd probably do a squad of 9 in front, and a squad of 9 in the back. Even assuming that they get split fire and in the most optimum ways, you get to wound allocate around in such a way that they have to basically kill an entire squad's worth before there's an actual hole in the wall. Now you're just under 100 points away from a hole poked in your wall.

You can go so far as to double the redundancy of that wall with the guardsmen, or stretch it out twice as far. Sure, those guardsmen will fall faster, but now, thanks to wound allocation, you have to kill about 40 guardsmen before you get a hole in the wall, and unlike against the primaris, multi-damage wounds do absolutely nothing to help. There's literally no shortcut to dealing with hordes other than buckets of small arms fire, which a lot of armies struggle with.

 Drasius wrote:
Considering that this is a hard return to being "the plasma edition", willingly putting expensive 3+ save 2W troops out as chaff for screening doesn't sound like a winning plan to me.


Yeah. I read this thread and then looked at my IG army lists and count exactly four non-plasma special weapons between roughly 100 miniatures. Then I looked at my dark angels lists and saw that there were literally zero times I picked non-plasma over plasma, except with my lascannon devastators which would have a similar effect.

I'm gonna say that, at least in my meta, the only thing worse at screening than Restartes is maybe Grey Knight Terminators... maybe.

If you don't want to splash in Infantry Squads, your best bet is Scouts.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2018/01/12 18:26:19


Assume all my mathhammer comes from here: https://github.com/daed/mathhammer 
   
Made in us
Fixture of Dakka




Against 1 Damage, Intercessors are pretty cool. Otherwise Scouts win simply because of deployment options.

I use both because I feel like it, but it isn't the greatest plan.

CaptainStabby wrote:
If Tyberos falls and needs to catch himself it's because the ground needed killing.

 jy2 wrote:
BTW, I can't wait to run Double-D-thirsters! Man, just thinking about it gets me Khorney.

 vipoid wrote:
Indeed - what sort of bastard would want to use their codex?

 MarsNZ wrote:
ITT: SoB players upset that they're receiving the same condescending treatment that they've doled out in every CSM thread ever.
 
   
 
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