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Subject: While I know they are MEQ, where do Dark Angels fall in the casual meta?
So, yes, I'm aware that casual meta changes from place to place, but I'm just curious what you all think about Dark Angels in the casual meta. Since they have specific units, models, strategems, etc. (since they aren't just generic space marines), do they hold a higher place among the casual meta? Or, are they essentially the same as any other MEQ army?
ServiceGames wrote: So, yes, I'm aware that casual meta changes from place to place, but I'm just curious what you all think about Dark Angels in the casual meta. Since they have specific units, models, strategems, etc. (since they aren't just generic space marines), do they hold a higher place among the casual meta? Or, are they essentially the same as any other MEQ army?
Competitively they have done worse than codex SM.
I suspect the buff to bolters boosted them significantly more than standard marines due to how their CT makes them want to not move.
Subject: While I know they are MEQ, where do Dark Angels fall in the casual meta?
Worse than Ultras with Guilliman. Obviously worse than Deathwatch too. Arguably better than the others, though that isn't saying much.
One trick pony army using Azrael and a Dark Shroud to make a very durable gunline. It's not that good a trick either, but it's still better than what some armies can manage. Weapons from the Dark Age also gives you some nasty options with Hellblasters and Inceptors. Dark Talons used to be disgusting too, but multiple point nerfs mean they're just quite good now.
Subject: While I know they are MEQ, where do Dark Angels fall in the casual meta?
Spoletta wrote: If talking about monodex, DA are better than DW. DW have better infantry but do not have the pieces to make a working army.
DA are the only marine faction who can stack a -3 to hit, one round a command russ from deep strike with a single min unit and Azrael is just a beast.
They also have the only terminators who can make some work.
I am actually talking about Monodex DA at this point. I worked it all out and believe I have close to 6000 points of DA that I've barely used (more of a hobbyist than a gamer). Which terminators exactly? The Deathwing Knights, Thunder Hammer/Storm Shield Terminators, or Shooty Terminators?
As someone who frequently plays against them in casual games...in a word? Capable.
They have a rule which allows them to re-roll 1's when they don't move - strong...extremely strong with Plasma weaponry.
They have a stratagem which buffs plasma damage...combined with the above makes for obnoxious Hellblaster opportunities.
They have a standard bearer which allows slain models to potentially fire off on a 2+ ballistic skill - again combined with the above becomes extremely strong (borderline frustrating as hell)
They have a number of excellent aura units, such as Azrael, the Dark Shroud, etc.
The recent stormbolter buff helped immensely with Deathwing and Ravenwing.
The Deathwing have a shoot-twice stratagem when they deepstrike, made more versatile now with the beta-bolter rules
The Ravenwing fliers are arguably some of the very best in the marine inventory.
Overall they have some superb tricks...when castled up, it's an army I wouldn't even enjoy playing against (becomes a bit obnoxious), but it can be pretty damn solid. It's not going to win you a tournament, but the book is heaps better than basic Marines.
Garbage psychic abilities/spells.
Still Space Marines and still paying for that.
Subject: Re:While I know they are MEQ, where do Dark Angels fall in the casual meta?
I've spent some time going through the DA codex, and have written my thoughts below.
Hopefully it helps give you some insight as to the units. These are just my thoughts. Take them for what you will
Jink This rule can be very useful if you are looking to get your ravenwing into position.
Being able to give a 4++ to any units is rock solid. While a 4++ is good, it's not good enough to just turbo boost around the game to avoid damage. Your units can and will get killed while turbo-boosting. It just will help them live a little longer.
Inner Circle This rule means that you don't need to ever worry about losing units. This can be useful for your deathwing terminators if you lose 8 models in 1 round. You don't have to worry about any chance of losing those other two.
In 30 years of playing 40k, I have only seen someone play 'fallen' once. They are such a rare unit, the second perk of this rule is not really worth anything.
Defenders of Humanity This is a solid rule for troops that gives them an advantage. Most armies have a similar rule.
Grim Resolve This is a great rule, probably the best for any marine chapter. If a unit did not move in the its prior movement phase, it can reroll 1's to hit. This is great for units that are sitting on the back line delivering damage -- such as devastators.
The other perk of this rule is that you can never lose more than 1 model due to morale issues. Even if you lose 8 marines out of a 10 man squad, there is no way you will lose the entire squad. This can be very useful for scoring those points. ATSKNF is very helpful, but does not prevent wipeouts.
Play to these strengths when playing with DA. Try and bring a few units that can just stand on an objective and shoot it out. Don't just rush up because you can. Dig in and act like the stubborn dark angel you are.
Deathwing Assault For 3 CPs you can have a squad shoot the turn it uses Teleport Strike twice. This will give an extra 40 SB shots and up to 4 CML shots. This is a very powerful stratagem, and gives the deathwing a nice boost in the arm.
While you can use this for smaller DW units, it's more CP effective to use it with larger units.
Wisdom of the Ancients This is useful if you had to move your units and cannot take advantage of 'grim resolve' but you still want to up your damage output for the round.
Only in Death Does Duty End This stratagem can be a nice perk when you want to do more damage or kill an enemy unit. Given that characters deliver more damage in assault than at range, you will usually use this if a DP punks your Belial or Azrael.
This can, however, be used if you are taking a Caplain Dreadnaught from Forge World, letting you get 2 more LC shots before removing the model from play.
Auspex Scan With Bolter Discipline, this rule got better. If your squad did not move, all your models will be firing at twice their rapid fire rate.
Hunt the Fallen This can be useful if you are playing in an ITC game and you want to target an enemy IC. The DA are generally more of a shooty army than an assaulty army, but being able to reroll to-hits against an enemy warboss with your dreadnaught can be a game changer.
Weapons From the Dark Age For 1 CP, you can increase the damage value for plasma weapons by 1. If you have 5 devastators with 4 PCs standing on the top floor in a ruin, and you burn their armoriumm cherub, the squad will have 10 shots, rerolling 1s to hit, that are STR 8, -3 AP, D3. That will do a number on a knight.
Speed of the Raven The real winner here is that by advancing, you also trigger 'jink' for the unit. This means you can now shoot and still enjoy the 4+ invlun save jink provides. For 1 CP, this is a nice perk.
Fury of the Lion Adding 1 to the STR score of an IC is decent, but there are better choices out there.
Courage of the First Legion Given that Grim Resolve already prevents you from losing more than 1 model, this trait is lackluster
Brilliant Strategist This trait is money. It effectivly gives you 1 extra CP, and then for every Stratagem you use, you have a 1/3 chance of getting one back. If you are using 1 point stratagems, this means a 6 CP army will effectivly have 9 CPs (including the one you get for the trait).
This is hands down the best trait, and the one you should always be taking.
Huntsman This can be useful, but given that you will be shooting something like a plasma gun at your target, it's not game breaking.
Master of Manoeuvre Given that DA are more of a 'stand and shoot' army, this does not fit well into the feel of the army.
Stubborn Tenacity A FNP of 6+ if you did not move your warlord. This ability is 'meh' and will only net your warlord, on average, less than 1 extra wound per battle.
Relics of Caliban
HeavenFall Blade This is a nice upgrade from the standard power sword.
Foe Smiter Making a storm bolter AP -1 and D2 is pretty good. While those 4 shots won't change the scope of the game, they are not bad for a free upgrade.
Shroud of Heroes This can be really useful if you think your character will be targeted on a regular basis.
I see this going with a Chaplain Dreadnaught to make it harder to kill.
Mace of Redemption This upgrades a chaplian's weapon. It's a pretty decent option if you are taking an Interrogator-Chaplain.
Lion's Roar This lets you shoot both the plasma and bolter with your combi-weapon, effectivly netting you 1-2 extra bolter shots. I would rather take the Foe Smiter.
The Eye of the Unseen This stacks nicely with Interrogator-Chaplains. That gives a total -2 to LD. It also gives that DP a big shock when it flies into your warlord only to get smacked around before it can swing.
Mind Worm This is a 1 mortal wound smite that makes your opponent swing last. This can be useful if an enemy DP is about to assault your dreadnaughts. 5 scouts swinging first won't make any difference, so in that case just use a normal smite.
Aversion This causes an enemy unit to have a -1 to hit. This can stack with a dark shroud, making it very hard for enemy units to hit yours.
Righteous Repugnance This stacks very well with Deathwing Terminators. Going from 50% of the power fists hitting to 75% of the power fists hitting and wounding 35/36 of the time instead of 5/6 of the time is a huge boost to damage output.
Trephination Whoever came up with this power does not understand how bell curves work. If you are targeting a LD 8 unit, then there is only a 27.77% to do even one mortal wound. Only 11% of the time you will do more damage than a regular smite, and 72.22% of the time you will do nothing.
If you were to stack the Eye of the Unseen along with an Interrogator-Chaplain, you could boost the effect of this power, but those are a lot of blocks to stack up for a fairly underwhelming result.
Engulfing Fear This power can be really useful when stacked with the Eye of the Unseen along and an Interrogator-Chaplain. Forcing your opponent to roll 2d6 and pick the lowest, along with lowering LD by 2 can cause serious LD issues for units taking losses.
Mind Wipe This power lets you target one model and lower it's LD, BS, and WS if you win a rolloff.
Don't go after enemy characters with this. Target something like a soul grinder or ravager. You will have a better chance of causing the debuff, and the effect will be stronger. Making a model go from a 2+ to 3+ to hit is much less effective than lowering it from 4+ to 5+.
Azrael This guy is expensive, but comes with some nice auras and is exceptional is assault. He also has a nice gun as well.
His Lion helm only effects models within 6", and does not effect vehicles.
This is still one of the few characters in relic armor, so out of the gate he is a 2+ save without the bulky terminator armor.
Belial This guy is not quite as pricy as Azrael, but still fairly pricy.
Obviously he is best when placed with units of deathwing as his aura benefits them the most.
In assault, he's good but not a match for Azrael, who has more attacks and a higher STR.
Sammael on Corvex This guy is just three more points than Azrael. Where Azrael is focused on aura's, Sammael is focused on killing.
He comes with a plasma cannon and two storm bolters. If he charged, his sword is swinging at STR 8, with -3 AP and 2 DMG.
He does still come with a basic aura, which is on a bike base -- making it slightly larger than other character's auras.
Sammael on Sableclaw The twin AC and HB are nice for shooting. He has an improved aura over the bike Sammael.
This version of Sammael is much more underwhelming due to the cost. IMHO, he is about 30 points overcosted.
Interrogator-Chaplain These guys got a point drop in the CA2018 codex, now coming in at a stock 80 points with a 4++ and crozius arcanum.
They also come with 3 auras, two of which buff your units and the third is a debuff aura. Overall, these guys are pretty sweet.
For an extra 15 points, you can give them jump packs, which can work if you are going with an assault based army. If you are looking to go with an assault army, however, you should consider soup with another chapter like BA.
Ravenwing Talonmaster This guy suffers from the same problem as Sableclaw. He's just to expensive for what he gives.
The aura of "No Escape" is nice but he's just too expensive.
Interrogator-Chaplain in Terminator Armor 20 more points gets you a storm bolter, a 2+ save, +1 wound, and teleport strike.
There are a few cases where this is really to your advantage, as a 2+ save is twice as durable as a 3+ save vs AP0 weapons. In most cases though, you will be just relying upon your invlun save.
I think this is a worthwhile 20 point upgrade. It was not worth the 40 points it cost before the CA2018 update.
Asmodai Asmodai comes in at 130 points for basically a Interrogator-Chaplain combined with an ancient.
You could potentially combine his aura with an ancient for +2 attacks per model.
Given that the regular Interrogator-Chaplain is only 80 points, I just can't justify the extra 50 points for that aura.
Chaplain A regular chaplain is only 8 points cheaper than a Interrogator-Chaplain.
Those 8 points give you an extra wound and the aura of dread -- well worth the upgrade.
Given those upgrade options, I don't see any reason to take the plain chaplain over the Interrogator-Chaplain.
Primaris Chaplain These guys are 3 points cheaper than the Interrogator-Chaplain.
They come with an extra wound and attack over the plain chaplain -- only losing the option for jump pack assault. They also get the absolver bolt pistol, which is a nice upgrade for a pistol.
The problem with all these chaplains is simple -- DA are more of a shooting based army vs an assault based army. In nearly every instance, it's better just to grab a master to give ranged auras. If you want to go with assault marines, bring a detachment of BA or SW.
Ezekial Ezekial is 39 more points than a stock librarian, and he gives some nice options for those 39 points.
He has a better WS and BS, he beefed up force sword, he has an extra wound and a 2+/4++ save.
Ezekial can also deny 2 powers a turn, where other librarians can only deny one.
Just to add to the mix, he has an aura which can be a real bummer for that DP that just wiped out a terminator squad, which then pile in and get 1 more attack each.
Librarian There is nothing special about these guys compared to librarians of other chapters. The only unique thing about them is that they know powers from the Interromancy discipline.
Primaris Librarian For only 5 more points, the Primaris librarian comes with 1 extra wound and 1 extra attack.
There are very few reasons you would ever want to take a plain librarian over a Primaris version.
Librarian in Terminator Armor For 20 more points you get terminator armor for your librarian, increasing the wounds and save.
The librarian also gains a 5++ save. While not game breaking, this save actually useful to the librarian -- unlike the chaplain or master.
If you are going to take a stock librarian, this is a worthwhile upgrade. If you are already throwing down 20 points to upgrade your librarian, you should consider another 19 for Ezekial.
Master Masters got a small boost to their master-crafted boltguns with the bolter discipline rule. Otherwise they are still fairly plain.
77 points gets you a master that will let units near him reroll 1s. You can spend some points to make him more of a beatstick -- but he will never come close to a DP for that potential.
Master in Terminator Armor Terminator armor increases the cost of your master by 21 points.
Stock they come in at 106 points -- though I suggest swapping out the relic blade for a power fist to get the free wrist mounted gernade launcher.
If you are going with a deathwing theme and want to bring a master, but don't want to shell out the 150 points for Belial, this is a decent option.
Master in Cataphractii Armor You can save 7 points and bring your master in Cataphractii Armor, giving him a 3++ save but lowering the move to 4".
Given how weak chainfists are, you might want to swap out for a different weapon.
As masters are generally more of a gunline support and counter-punch this is not a bad option.
Primaris Master A Primaris Master is 4 more points than a plain Master, and gives 1 more attack and wound - -making it an exceptional investment.
They get to have a master crafted auto-bolt rifle, which is a margianal upgrade over the regular master. Adding a power sword for 4 points is also a great addition.
Master in Gravis Armor This master is 35 more points than the Primaris Master. This guy is one of the big losers of the CA2018 book.
The boltstorm gauntlet is basically a power fist that did not get a price drop. Sure, it is also a pistol with 3 shots, but it's overall very underwhelming for the cost.
For 125 points, I can think of much better characters to bring.
Overall, masters are decent for increasing the shooting of nearby units. If a unit is normally hitting on a 3+, it increases the to hit chances from 2/3 to 5/9. This is a 20% increase in damage output. If hitting on a 4+ (like using a heavy weapon and moving) then the damage output increases by 16%. For the record, you can get this same damage increase by using Lieutenants.
Since DA come with grim resolve, masters' aura brings less value than other auras.
Lieutenants These guys are 63 points a pop before any upgrades.
Their aura is to reroll to-wound results of 1 vs roll to-hit rolls. Generally this offers less of an advantage, as most of your weapons will be wounding on a 4+ or worse. If your Lieutenant is near units that are wounding on a 3+ or better, then they are generally more effective than your master for damage output increases.
One of the nice perks of Lieutenants is that 1-2 come in a squad, so you could spam 6 of them into your army if you so choose.
Given the grim resolve aura that come with all DA, there is a lot of value in bringing lieutenants.
Techmarines Techmarines got a hidden boost with the 2018CA. Servo-arms, which used to cost 12, now cost 0.
This means they are only 50 points base, and if you bring a servo-harness they go up to 61 points -- well worth the upgrade cost.
As an added bonus they can also repair DA vehicles for d3 wounds, and come with a 2+ save.
For a cheap HQ, these are pretty decent. I've written up a few lists full of dreadnaughts and techmarines to be the HQ.
Primaris Lieutenants Other Primaris versions dropped in price with the CA2018 release, but these guys stayed the same. They are a full 10 points more expensive than a regular Lieutenant for an extra attack and wound.
I see no reason to take these guys.
Tactical Squad These guys got a boost with the bolter discipline rule, and got a few hidden point drops. A Plasma cannon dropped 5 points, and a melta gun dropped 3 points.
10 of these guys costs 160 points equipped as such. These guys are just underwhelming for their cost.
Intercessor Squads These guys also got a nice boost, with the CA2018 release and the new bolter discipline rule.
Auxiliary grenade launchers are also now free, which gives the option of throwing krak gernades at vehicles.
10 of these guys standing still are throwing 20 STR 4 shots at 30" with -1 AP for 170 points. They are also rerolling 1's to hit.
I plan on bringing 20 of these in most of my lists from now on.
Scout Squads Before the bolter discipline rule, these models were always used with sniper rifles - now regular bolter scouts could be useful.
5 of these guys with a 4 bolters and 1 ML cost only 75 points. Given that they can deploy using concealed positions, they make for very solid objective campers.
These guys mix very well with the grim resolve rule, as they will usually just be sitting on an objective.
Summary There are only really 2 choices for troops in the DA army. Scouts and Intercessors.
If you are playing ITC missions, holding objectives is critical to earning points, and defenders of humanity gives a huge advantage in this regard. I'm looking at 20 Intercessors and 10 scouts as standard. That gives you troops on 3 objectives for 490 points, throwing 40 bolt rifle, 18 bolter and 2 MLs a turn.
Primaris Apothecary For 13 more points than a plain Apothecary, you can upgrade yours to a Primaris. Gives gives you 1 more wound, and dual wielded pistols (though one only had a 3" range).
Personally I don't think the Primaris version is worth it.
Apothecary The main reason to bring an Apothecary is to heal your other units. If, every round, your Apothecary is healing a unit, they can bring ~3 models back from the dead over the course of a game, or they can heal up to 6 wounds on a character.
Given a base cost of 55 points, bringing Intercessors back would bring back 51 points worth of models -- resulting in a net loss of points. Bringing back 3 deathwing would bring back 96 points. This means the effectiveness of your Apothecary is directly related to the quality of your units.
If you are bringing multiple high quality units, an Apothecary can be worth the cost. If you are spamming cheaper units, leave him at home.
Company Ancient The ancient's statline is roughly the same as a Lieutenant, so you are effectively paying the points for the banner.
The banner lets your units get one extra use of shooting/fighting before they die. How effective this is really depends on the units that you have.
Over the course of a game, a unit will have, at most 6 rounds of shooting. If your unit is destroyed on turn 4, then 1/3 of their shooting potential is lost. This banner saves you some of that loss potential. One way to think of this would be to add 1/6 to the cost of every unit, as if it dies it would get an additional round of shooting.
Much like an Apothecary, you are hedging your bets that the cost of the Ancient will make up for the extra shots you get from the units.
Primaris Ancient For 27 more points you can upgrade to a primaris, getting 1 more wound and 1 more attack.
This is not worth it, and should be avoided.
Company Champion 40 points gets you a character that will engage other characters in a heroic intervention.
While the Blade of Caliban is very effective, the champion only gets 3 attacks so won't stop something like a DP in it's tracks.
Given that DA are more of a 'stand back and shoot' army, I'm less inclined to bring these. While I like them, I just don't think they are the best models out there -- still for 40 points, they are very affordable.
Company Veterans These guys went down to 14ppm with the CA2018 release.
Storm shields are also only 2 PPM for these guys. You can swap their bolt pistol for one.
Storm bolters can be swapped for their chainsword.
This means for 90 points, you can bring 5 guys with storm bolters and storm shields, which throws 20 shots at 24" with a 3++ save. If you are looking for pure storm bolter firepower, this is a cheap way to deliver.
The main issue is that these squads are limited to 5 in size. In a competitive setting, you will be limited to only 3 squads, or 15 of these guys.
Deathwing Apothecary For 20 more points, you get to upgrade the apothecary to terminator armor.
This adds 1 extra wound, but oddly enough lowers 1 attack. It gives the Apothecary a storm bolter, which is a nice upgrade.
If you are running a deathwing themed army, this is the way to go for an apothecary. The problem is that at 77 points, the RoI for your apothecary is less effective. You are hedging that you will bring back 3 deathwing back a game.
Chapter Ancient This option is effectively paying 85 points for a slightly better version of the Company Ancient, giving their last attack a BS/WS of 2+.
The extra cost for this upgrade is 22 points. Personally I don't think this upgrade is worth the cost.
Deathwing Ancient The deathwing ancient clocks in at 112 with gear. Unlike other ancients, his aura gives all deathwing units within 6" +1 attack. This could be combined with Asmodai to give your deathing 4 attacks per model, and allowing them to reroll their missed attacks in the fight phase.
This is a fairly heavy investment of points, but could be a surprise to someone who gets to close to your deathwing. 40 powerfist swings hitting 75% of the time will deliver 30 hits, compared to the 10 hits the same squad would normally deliver.
What is the difference between the two? The first would be a hurt knight, the second would be a dead knight.
Deathwing Terminator Squad These guys got a lot better with the CA2018 update and Bolter Discipline rule. A basic deathwing now clocks in at 32 points, giving a model with a 2+/5++, 4 shots with a SB, and a PF.
Unlike ultramarine terminators, there is no such thing as a 'terminator assault squad'. You can mix and match LC or TH/SS terminators in with the SB marines. This would be great if they were not incredibly overpriced. Even with the cost reduction for the storm shield, a TH/SS termie still runs 41 points. A LC terminator runs 34 points, even more than PF/SB version. In summary, while the idea of bringing CC termies mixed in with your shooting ones sounds great, the cost-benifit is just not worth it.
The CML is the heavy weapon of choice, as it -- when combined with the storm bolter, only costs 40 points. It has gotten cheaper, and still allows for the SB to throw out 4 dice. If you have the spare points to throw them into a squad, it's well worth it.
The watcher is a 2/3 deny for an incoming power. This will usually be a smite, and will -- on average, kill 1 terminator. On average this means that you will save 21 points of terminators for this 5 point upgrade. As many armies have psychic powers, if you have a spare 5 points lying around, this is worthwhile.
Deathwing are all Inner Circle, which means they don't are about any morale. This is a minor upgrade over grim resolve.
While 10 TEQ with 2+/5++ and 20 wounds sounds great, the reality is that they are still picked up in droves. Keep these guys hidden when possible, so those -3 AP supercharged plasma guns only knock you down to a 4+ save instead of your 5++.
Deathwing Knights Assault terminators are overpriced. Deathwing Knights, after getting a cost reduction with the CA2018 codex are just about right on cost.
Coming in at 35 points, they come with a more effective thunder hammer/SS, and get a flail of the unforgiven.
One squad of 10 of these coming in via teleport strike could put a lot of needed pressure on a specific area of the board.
Deathwing Cataphractii Terminators with a 4++ are pretty handy. The 4" base move is extremely slow, however, so they won't get a lot of movement on the board.
You can give them all a single LC to save a point, but the PF is a bit better, as it's STR 8 with -3 AP and 2 wounds per hit on average.
When you take into consideration the new bolter discipline rule, there is no reason to take a heavy flamer with these guys. Just use them at 35 point bolter caddies that are hard to dislodge with a 4++.
Deathwing Tartaros These terminators have some nice options over the plain deathwing terminators.
They can bring reaper autocannons, which are nice tools and only 10 points with the CA2018 update.
Generally I think that normal Deathwing Terminators are better than Tartaros terminators. If you want to bring more than 3 squads of terminators, this is the next place to go.
Dreadnought These units got nice boosts in CA2018. Their base cost went down, and the cost of their weapons went down.
A dread with a twin LC, DCCW, and SB runs only 132 points.
The dread can take advantage of grim resolve, not needed a master to let them reroll 1s when they are standing on the backline offering fire support.
The dread is dangerous in assault, with a STR 12 -3AP 3 wound weapon swinging 4 times a round. I've used them to kill ork warbosses, DPs, and razorbacks. Dedicated CC units charging the dread can kill it before it can swing, but when the dread gets to activate first -- it can do serious damage.
That DCCW is why I don't suggest bringing a ML on them. The DCCW turns them into a valid threat in assault to pillow fighting in assault. That extra missile per round is not worth the loss of utility.
Dreadnoughts also have less than 10 wounds, which means they never degrade in profile. They also count as a vehicle, which allows for techmaines to heal ~2 wounds per turn.
Venerable Dreadnought For 20 more points, you get a better WS/BS and you ignore a wound 1/6 of the time (which results in 1.33~ more wounds)
Grim resolve works more effectively with the 2+ WS. The unit goes from hitting 7/9 of the time (78%) to 35/36 of the time (97%). If you have a Lieutenant near your Venerable Dreadnought, you are going to be wounding with your LC nearly every time. (35/36)hit * (7/9)wound
Contemptor Dreadnought For 142 points, you get a MM Dreadnought with a degrading profile.
The 5+ invlun save means the dread will be getting about 13 wounds before it dies, making it roughly twice as durable as a plain Dreadnought. Until it only has 2 wounds left, it's profile is still as good as a plain Dreadnought, and hits like a Venerable Dreadnought at 6+ wounds.
This Dreadnought is obviously more of a 'in your face' kind of Dreadnought vs a supporting fire Dreadnought. It weapon has a shorter range and has half as many shots.
Redemptor Dreadnought This Dreadnought is base 105 points and can carry a large array of weapons. Unlike the other Dreadnoughts, the Redemptor fist's cost is included with the dread cost, making the real base cost of this Dreadnought closer to 75 points.
The Heavy Onslaught Cannon and Macro Plasma Incinerator have a difference in 1 point of cost. The Heavy Onslaught Cannon is akin to having 4 heavy bolters tied together with twine. The Macro Plasma Incinerator is akin to a twin PC with a slightly better AP and STR. Personally I think the Macro Plasma Incinerator is a slightly better option, given that the army already has a great many number of bolter shots.
The Heavy Flamer will hit 3.5 times, where the Onlaught Cannon will only shoot 3 times, hitting twice -- however the Onlaught Cannon will get a lot more shots than the Heavy Flamer. Both are solid options, depending on how you want to play your Redemptor Dreadnought.
You will want to grab two storm bolters over the Fragstorm Gernade Launchers. The storm bolters now shoot more times are half the cost. It's a no brainer.
The Icarus Rocket Pod is half of a Reaper Auto Cannoon that is slighly better against flyers and slightly worse against ground troops. For the cost of 7 points, this is optional - but far from a must-have.
Durability-wise, the Redemptor Dreadnought is right alongside the Contemptor Dreadnought, but has a worse degrading profile.
The entire package will run you around 155 points -- putting it slightly more expensive than a standard Venerable Dreadnought with a TLLC. It's a solid choice.
Ravenwing Apothecary The Ravenwing Apothecary comes with one more wound and toughness than a plain Apothecary.
He also moves 14", giving a great deal more flexibility to get to where he needs to be in order to heal a unit. This is balanced by the cost of 92 points, making the RoI much harder to reach.
This unit comes with a Plasma Talon, which is a fantastic weapon. A Ravenwing Black Knight comes with one of these, and is 38 points stock. If you consider that you are getting this extra 'black knight', the cost of this Apothecary drops to 54 points -- a very reasonable amount for getting the RoI.
Overall, I think this is the best way to go if you are going to bring an Apothecary. The speed and extra wounds make this unit worth it.
Ravenwing Ancient The Ravenwing Ancient, much like the Ravenwing Apothecary, comes with a Plasma Talon.
He also brings the Ravenwing Banner, which like the Deathwing Banner, gives an extra attack to all Ravenwing units. This can be useful if you are using a squad of Ravenwing Black Knights.
Ravenwing Champion The Ravenwing Ancient is much like the other champions, designed to battle other mid-level characters.
Unlike the other champions, the Ravenwing Champion has a 14" move, can Jink and comes with a Plasma Talon.
While the model clocks in at a premium 106 points, he brings a lot to the table.
If you are planning on running an 'in your face' ravenwing army, I could see someone wanting to bring one.
Aggressor Squad Aggressor have an extra toughness and 1 less movement than Intercessors and are 4 more points per model.
They can either fire twice if they stand still, or advance and shoot assault weapons with no modification to hit. The latter helps greatly with their short move.
Aggressors come with either Auto Boltstorm Gauntlets or Flamestorm Gauntlets. Both options count as a power fist in assault.
The Auto Boltstorm Gauntlets are 12 points. If you consider that a PF is 7 points, you are effectivly paying 5 points for a 6 shot storm bolter with 18" range -- which is fairly lackluster. If the Aggressors stay still, they get to shoot the boltstorm gauntlets twice, for 12 shots each -- in addition to taking advantage of Grim Resolve.
The Auto Boltstorm Gauntlets also mean the Aggressor has to take a Fragstorm Gernade Launcher for 4 points -- which is an average of 3.5 extra bolter shots per round of shooting. Again, if the Aggressor stands still, this gets a little more interesting as that is 7 'bolter' shots from the Fragstorm Gernade Launcher and another 12 from the Auto Boltstorm Gauntlets. A squad of 3 of these well placed can deliver 57 shots -- a respectable amount.
When configured this way, the Aggressors run 37 points each.
Flamestorm gauntlets give 2d6 attacks that auto hit from 8" away. Given that these auto hit, it's the equilivant of ~9 bolter shots. If standing still, each model will deliver ~14 hits. While the Flamestorm gauntlet Aggressor only comes in at 36 points, it is giving up one advantage of Grim Resolve.
My overall view is that Aggressors are to expensive for what they deliver. 19 bolter shots per model if standing still is amazing damage per point, but they are extremely fragile at only T5 with 2 wounds and a 3++. If you are going to run with Azrael this is a good place for him.
Servitors These guys got a lot cheaper with the CA2018 release, since the servo-arm is now free. They have dropped from 14 points to 5 points.
Now the bad news. They are hitting with that on 6s. If there is a friendly tech-marine within 6", then they are hitting on 5+ with the servo arm.
For 5 points per model, they are not bad.
Reiver Squad Reivers are 18 points per model, and fill the role of 'assault primaris' marines.
They come stock with an assault 2 bolter and a heavy bolt pistol. They can swap out either one of those for a combat knife, which grants them an extra attack.
If you are willing to bump their cost to 20, you can have them use a grav-chute which deploys them anywhere on the battlefield. This can be useful for putting pressure on enemy forces.
Summary There are 23 different elite choices to choose from. This lends strongly to vanguard formations to bring those extra elite slots.
There are lots of different options you can choose from here, and most of them are decent.
Scout Bike Squad These guys are decent now. They are 23 points per model with a twin boltgun.
They don't get jink, and are not Ravenwing, which makes them a bit weaker than regular Ravenwing bike squads.
Assault Marines There is not much to say about these guys. They are 15 points with a jump pack, with a 12" move. They have bolt pistol and chainsword. They can swap out for 2 flamers.
DA are not normally an assault based army, and using DA assault marines is like shoving a square peg in a round hole. Grim Resolve does not lend itself well to this playstyle.
If you really want to bring assault troops, bring a BA or SW detachment.
Inceptor Squad These models clock in at 25 points each. They are Gravis marines with a 10" move.
The squad has the option of taking assault bolters, which are effectively 2 short ranged HBs for 20 points, or two plasma exterminators for 34 points, which are assault plasma guns. This makes them either 45 or 59 points for a 2 wound, 3++ model.
They have great firepower, are fast, but they are just so expensive for how fragile they are. I really want to like these models, as they are beautiful models -- but they are just so lackluster in the game.
Ravenwing Attack Bike Squad Attack bikes are down to just 25 points per model before wargear. If you have a HB and twin boltgun, they run 37 points per model. Alternatively, they can swap the HB out for a MM for 22 points, making the entire bike 48 points.
48 points for a 4 wound model that has a heavy weapon is not bad.
Ravenwing Bike Squad Ravenwing bikes dropped to 21 bikes stock, and 23 with the twin boltgun.
You can take up to 8 of them in one squad, for a total of 184 points that can shoot 32 bolter shots at 24".
Up to two of the models can take special weapons. Unlike previous editions of 40k, a model can shoot all of their guns, which means they can fire the twin bolter and a normal weapon. For 12 points, you can add two flamers to the unit to gain some versatility.
They can take one attack bike with the rest of the bikes. This can be a useful tool if you are looking to gain some extra wounds for the squad.
The biggest challenge with this squad is their footprint on the table is quite large.
Ravenwing Land Speders Ravenwing Land Speeders got a price drop of 20 points per model. They frame is now only 50 points -- twice as much as an attack bike. For those extra 25 points, the land speeder gains 2 more wounds, 2" more move (6" if 3 more more speeders are in a unit), and the ability to fly. Where attack bikes are limited to HBs and MMs, the Land Speeders can get a much broader array of weapon loadouts.
For an extra 38 points per model, you can give them typhoon missile launchers, which fire 2 missiles per turn.
A squad of 5 speeders with 5 HBs and 5 typhoon missile launchers would cost 490 points. Thats a highly mobile firing platform throwing 10 krak missiles and 15 HB shots a round.
You can take a multimelta and heavy flamer on a land speeder for 86 points. While a single multi-melta hit is not going to destory a land raider any more, like in 5th edition, it has a good chance to knock off ~4 wounds off a model. A squad of 5 of these will put some serious hurting on a knight. The heavy flamers shooting 5d6 times will also do some damage to horde armies. 5 speeders equipped like this would run 430 points.
You can also mix and match other weapon loadouts. You could get a few MM speeders and a few typhoon missile launcher speeders. I would suggest keeping them focused on either long or short ranged, but you could do either.
One key element here is that they get pricy fast. 430 points goes a long way, and investing this into five T5 models with a 3+ save -- even with 30 wounds -- is just a large amount of points in a very fragile platform.
Ravenwing DarkShroud The Ravenwing DarkShroud runs either 138 or 150, depending on if it comes with a heavy bolter or assault cannon.
This model's main role is to provide your army with a -1 to hit buff against shooting for your units.
How useful is the -1 to hit? It depends on what is targeting your unit. If your unit is getting targeted by a weapon that normally hits on a 4+, then going to hit on a 5+ pretty good. If you are getting hit on a 5+, then that -1 doubles your durability.
Given that this vehicle will be targeted first, the Ravenwing DarkShroud will likely be jinking every round, so
Ravenwing Land Speeder Vengeance The options for this speeder are to take a heavy bolter or assault cannon -- and the heavy bolter is the odvious choice as it has the same range as the plasma storm battery. This sets the model at 132 points.
The plasma storm battery is 13.3% less effective than two plasma cannons (shooting 3.5 times a turn instead of 4 times a turn).
Plasma cannons dropped 5 points in the CA2018 release, nearly 25% of their price. The Ravenwing Land Speeder Vengeance, which has the cost of the plasma storm battery bundled into the vehicle, did not decrease in price. This means that GW acknowledged that this weapon was overpriced but did not lower the cost of the Ravenwing Land Speeder accordingly.
Currently you are paying 90 points for the land speeder hull. While it does have 9 wounds, this speeder hull should be closer to 70 points. At this point, it's just more effective to take a regular land speeder and give it a Typhoon Missle Launcher.
Ravenwing Black Knights The guys got a point drop with the CA2018 codex down 8 points per model, putting them at 17 more points per model than regular Ravenwing Bikes.
What do they get for that extra cost? They get +1 attack, Plasma talons and corvus hammers. Plasma talons are basically assault plasma guns. Corvus hammers are nice weapons that give +1 STR, -1 AP and any wound rolls of a 6 will do D3 wounds instead of 1 wound. This squad can deliver some punch in CC.
A squad of 10 of these knights will set you back 380 points. They hit like a truck but are very fragile.
Summary The real winners in here are bikes. You can really load up some units, like land speeders, with lots of heavy weapons. The problem is that they can cost you a great deal of points very quickly, putting you at a competitive disadvantage to other armies.
Devastator Squad These guys have not changed that much in the past 15 years. Marines with heavy weapons, with your first five marines costing 65 points. You can add bullet catchers for 13 points per model so you are not losing heavy weapons with your first casualties.
The Armorium Cherub is a nice perk, letting your unit get an extra shot with a heavy weapon. As each game only gives you 6 shots with a heavy weapon, getting a free shot is helpful -- especially given that there is no cost.
They got a little better with the CA2018 release, as many of the heavy weapons dropped in price. This means 4 PCs inside a squad will run you 129 points if you have just 1 bullet catcher. This is cheaper than a Ravenwing Land Speeder Vengeance with over twice the shots.
Devastator Squads pair nicely with Grim Resolve. You will probably be putting a squad up in a ruin or other building and leave them there all game. Since they are not moving, they will reroll 1s to hit.
I think that one squad of these is the perfect number to add to an army. Spamming these is not effective, as they can only be placed in so many places on the battlefield.
Hellblaster Squad The Primaris Devastator squad. Unlike the Devastator's, the Hellblasters all have long range plasma guns.
Unlike the Intercessors, the Hellblasters did not drop in price.
If you take the assault plasma incinerator, the Hellblasters run 35 points per model. If you go with the rapid fire version, they run 33 points per model. The rapid fire ones have a longer range, but only double tap when within 15". Both are valid choices, and it's up to you which you perfer.
He heavy plasma incinerator variants will also run you 35 points per model. They will never be able to double tap, so you are losing 50% of your shots. Every time you don't move, you can use the supercharge ability as it stacks with Grim Resolve - this allows you to shoot STR 9, AP -4, D2 shots. These will put a hurting on any high armor target quickly. 5 Hellblasters equipped in such a way will set you back 175 points.
Predator This unit got slighly cheaper in the CA2018 release due to the decrease in cost of a twin lascannon.
A single lascannon still runs 25 points, which means that the 4 LC pred is not as good of a deal. It might be better to run with just HB sponsons.
The predator autocannon did not decrease in price. It's still a solid weapon, shooting ~4 shots that do 3 damage a pop. It still does the job of destroying light armor like a champ.
The HK missile is now only 6 points. As it's a 1 shot item, I'm still not sold on it. Over the course of a game, you should get 6 shots with a unit (provided it's not destroyed), which means the HK is a ML that costs 6*(number of turns the unit lives). If the unit dies on turn 2, then the HK was a great buy, as the same ML equivalent would have cost 20 points. If the unit lives to round 4, then the RoI starts to fall behind.
Overall, I think the predator is just not worth the points. 90 points for a T7 chassis that degrades is just not the best platform for weapons. I would rather pay 60 points for a dreadnaught that can also threaten units in close combat.
Hunter This unit also got a price drop down to 80 points.
This unit basically has a lascannon that's slighly better vs flying and worse vs non-flying. It can take a storm bolter, and for two points, it's always worth adding.
Is this unit worth it? 80 points for a lascannon is not a great buy, but it does come with an 11 wound delivery mechanism.
Stalker Basically a hunter with a 3 shot autocannon on it for 75 points.
Whirlwind The vengance launcher is a solid weapon. You are effectivly paying 104 points for an indirect weapon that is great at killing tough targets. It's the perfect tool to kill daemon princes.
Land Raider These dropped quite a bit of points with the CA2018 release. The base land raider dropped effectively 59 points, meaning that a LR stocked with two twin LCs, a twin HB, and a storm bolter runs 299 points.
That's rock solid for the point cost. For about twice the cost of ven dread, you are getting twice the firepower and roughly double the durability. PotMS means that while moving the LR has the same 'to hit' as a ven dread that moved.
The LR is also a transport. It can be used to deliver assault troops, or can be used to hide a squad that is near death.
If you have ever played with Land Raiders, you will also know they are effectively mobile terrain. They are such giant pieces they can be used to block LOS from most units.
Vindicator 125 points gets you a unit that can effectively fire two lascannon shots vs small units, and 3.5 lascannon shots vs large units.
There is little difference between STR 9 and STR 10 -- as most units will be wounded on a 3+ regardless. The only noticeable difference will be wounding T5 targets on a 2+ instead of a 3+.
The stock platform is 70 points, you are paying 55 points for the demolisher cannon. As a TLLC is now only 40 points, there are better platforms to put this weapon on.
Land Raider Crusader Like the LR, these dropped in points. The point drop is not as great as the LR, but the overall package is still cheaper, clocking in at 266 points.
This is a solid anti-infantry tool. It throws out 40 anti-infantry shots at 24" -- the same as 10 terminators. It can also be used to store 16 infantry inside.
I personally think this is one of the best buys of the codex after the CA2018 and Bolter Discipline rules.
Land Raider Redeemer Another winner in the point cost race as the base cost is now 180 for the frame.
The flamestorm cannons are still extremely pricy at 30 points a pop, meaning that with weapons the vehicle comes in at 288 points -- more than the LRC.
Is this better than the LRC? Well, that depends on what you plan on using them for. The LRC is better at staying back 24" and shooting at infantry. The LRR has to get within 8" to be effective, so it's a pretty clear delivery mechanism for heavy hitting infantry units.
The flamestorm cannon is a pretty solid weapon. 2d6STR 6, AP-2 D2 hits are good. That's ~7 hits per turn.
Summary With the drop in cost for plamsa cannons, I personally think you are better off running 5 Devastators with plasma cannons over 5 Hellblasters.
In regards to the vehicles, I think the LRC is the clear winner here. The Whirlwind also holds a lot of promise, but I almost never see them on the table.
Rhino Rhinos are a classic of a unit as Terminators for marines. With the buff to bolter discipline, you should always be taking dual storm bolters on your rhinos now, which makes them cost 74 points.
The Rhino is still pretty much the same vehicle it always was. It's a transport. T7, 10 wounds, and a 3+ save mean it's fairly tough. It can increase the speed of which a unit can get around the board until it starts to degrade.
The rhino can also be thought of to add some ablative wounds to your squad. It will cost about 7 points per wound you want to add to your squad. For even regular tacticals, this is still nearly have the price of a normal marine, meaning that for ablative wounds, the rhino is decent at protecting. Just disembark before the vehicle wrecks, or you will lose 1/6 of your embarked unit.
Overall though, Rhinos are still fairly lackluster IMHO. If they were 40 points, I could see bringing them, but at 70 points for the frame, they are just to expensive for what they do.
Razorback Let's take a rhino, and give it a heavy weapon! This is a great spot to put a twin lascannon, as they dropped in price and are now cheaper than a twin assault cannon. A twin heavy bolter is also a decent choice, but with bolter discipline, heavy bolters are not as needed as they once were.
Tossing a twin lascannon and SB onto this costs 112 points -- cheaper than a dread with the same armament. You can also use this to transport 5 marine bodies around, which can be useful.
Overall I think Razorbacks are decent.
Drop Pod The frame here dropped 20 points with the CA2018 codex.
It does what it always has. It drops a squad of 10 marines onto a specific spot. It also stays on the board as a T6, 8W, 3+ save vehicle that is great for holding an objective.
I can totally see someone dropping one of these and deploying some marines out on turn 2 to hold an objective that is uncontested by your opponent. This often happens if your opponent has chosen to castle or just focus their entire force on one half of the board.
Land Speeder Storm These models got slightly cheaper, now only costing 70 points to equip. With only a T5, 7W, and 4+ save, this vehicle will not weather a great deal of fire.
Point for point, using this as mobile firing bases is not very effective. Bolter discipline would require the scouts to stand still, which is not the point of a vehicle that can fly 18"
What it's really good at is getting your unit to their objective. The only problem is that scouts already can do this during deployment.
Repulsor This behemoth of a vehicle comes in at 185 for the frame, which is down from 215. With the base wargear, the stock Repulsor is 256 points.
There are some loadouts that you can swap for this vehicle, adding more anti-armor or adding more anti-infantry.
* You want to swap out the Icarus ironhail heavy stubber for a storm bolter -- which is just the better weapon.
* You want to add an additional ironhail heavy subber for 6 points.
This gives 2 ironhail heavy subbers, 3 storm bolters, 1 heavy onslaught gatling cannon, 2 fragstorm gernade launchers, and 1 twin HB. That's ~38 bolter-equse shots at 18" that can also transport 5 Gravis Primaris marines.
I'm not sold on this. I would rather take the LRC. The biggest advantage this vehicle brings is the ability to fly and the ability to transport aggressors. Those are nice perks, and should not be ignored -- I just don't think they are worth the cost.
Summary Transports in this book are not auto-take. The winners are the Razorbacks and Drop Pods. Rhinos and LSS's are fairly lackluster, and the Repulsor is good if you have a specific purpose in mind
Dark Talons These things were bumped to 180 points before wargear in 2017. They come with dual hurricane bolters putting their after-wargear cost to 200.
They come with a variety of different rules like 'hard to hit' and 'strafing run' that just make this unit even better.
They are still solid for the cost. The rift cannon does lots of damage to heavy targets like Knights, and the hurricane bolters just got better.
Nephilim Jetfighter These start at 123 points for the frame. If you take the avenger mega bolter, the total cost is 175 which makes a decent anti-infantry unit throwing out 16 dice. The blacksword missiles are good against light armor targets, with a STR 7, -3 AP, D2 being very decent.
Swapping out the megabolter for the twin LC only increases the cost by 5 points. This changes the role of the Nephilim to more of an anti-armor loadout.
Stormraven Gunship These did not get a price decrease directly from the CA2018 codex, but got one indirectly. The frame is 192 points, which did not change -- but the weapons you can put on it has changed.
Twin heavy plasma cannons dropped to 24 points. The twin HB can be swapped for a twin MM or typhoon ML -- both of which are solid choices. It has to take 2 stormstrike ML's and you always want to take the twin hurricane bolters.
The resulting firepower is the following, all of which does not suffer a penalty for shooting heavy weapons.
* 24 STR 4, AP 0, D1 bolter shots
* 2 STR 8, AP -4, D1d6 MM shots
* 4 STR 7, AP -3, D1 PC shots (with possible supercharge)
* 2 STR 8, AP -3, D3 missiles
As an added bonus, you can transport 12 infantry and 1 dreadnought.
The problem is the cost. With this loadout, the cost is 318 points. For a T7, 14 wound vehicle, it's just not worth the cost. At ~250, these would be worth it, but right now you are better off taking land raiders.
Subject: While I know they are MEQ, where do Dark Angels fall in the casual meta?