Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Necron Review: Fast Attack



This is by far my favorite category for Necrons. It contains the majority of what I consider fun units and I think it’s probably going to be the most filled area of the force org chart as people really start to settle down into their lists. On to the review!


Destroyers

Well the most common unit in the previous book got a role change. A lot of people are angry about the “nerfing” of destroyers but honestly on a point for point basis they perform equally against the previous entry. I’m not going to comment beyond this on Preferred Enemy since I don’t think it’ll matter for another 9 months or so which makes it a moot point. You can either run the unit as a 5 man jump infantry MEQ killer or you can run it as a Jump pack Dev squad with 2 ablative wounds. When all said and done though 260pts is pretty high for jump infantry lascannons so I doubt you’ll see them much. Personally I feel that destroyers are going to be heavily build dependant on whether or not they are useful or even used.

I don’t think you should ever see Heavy Destroyers under the current build. For the same cost as 3 H. Destroyers you can get 5 Crypteks w/the AP2 Missile Launcher (actually 5pts. Cheaper). Add in competing with Wraiths for cc screening and enemy elimination and they just don’t fit. However you might see standard destroyers for their ability to shoot entire enemy troop choices off the table if you catch them in the open. Not something I’d particularly like to use but definitely a route you can take. Overall though I don’t think Destroyers will see much playtime, especially once/if plastic wraith models come out.

Tomb Blades

I think Tomb Blades don’t get the respect the entry deserves. This is your jack-of-all trades Fast Attack choice. It’s also one of the very few customizable units in the codex. This unit does specialize in anti-troop which is something most of the army already does so I expect to see it run in a single format; particle beamer. This turns it into a 30pt jetbike toting a st6 ap5 blast which is pretty damn solid.

Does anyone remember Tyranid Warriors w/Deathspitters in the previous book? The unit of 5-6 Warriors toting St6 templates? That’s what this unit reminds me of. I used to use it to kill tanks in a pinch but mostly I put a massive hurt on dismounted infantry units. Overall I think a lot of people will overlook this unit but I think that would be a mistake. For 150pts you’re looking at a unit of five jetbikes w/St.6 templates at BS4. You could bump it to BS5 if you choose or add a 3+ save but the points go up at the same time and it’s just fine at its base since the armor is a 33% increase in cost in exchange for 16% survivability. The only time I’d consider this upgrade is if I was taking a single unit. If I’m taking multiple units then I wouldn’t bother. I will say that the Stealth upgrade might be useful when combined with turbo-boosting to give a 2++ save for when you need to redeploy or put heavy pressure on a flank.

Overall I think it’s a ridiculously solid units and one that I’ll be adding to my forces in an instant when the new models come out. Dang, I might be excited enough now to build a unit to use…..I’m persuasive J

Canoptek Scarabs

This is a unit that will depend on the FAQ. Overall I was less than impressed this weekend but that could have been due to circumstances and use instead of actually being a subpar performer. The reason I say this will depend on the FAQ is that right now most people agree that Entropic Strike will be rolled before rolling to pen which is a pretty big deal. Take that away and they do lose a bit of their awesome. That said they are a cheap, fast, and theoretically nasty anti-tank unit.

Personally I think that their value will come in field control and not actual damage that they do. Any vehicle in that 18”-24” range is going to move over 6 to avoid going pop which helps suppress the enemy and allows you to dictate the flow of the game. However I think you’ll soon find that unless you go crazy on scarabs and spiders that most armies will be able to deal with them rather simply. In fact between scarabs and beast packs you won’t be able to not run those options in your codex that can deal with them.

I’m probably breaking with most people’s thoughts on this but I just don’t see Scarabs being a focus and actually rate them probably the second lowest of the Fast Attack options. A single unit is all that you’ll see in my armies moving forward and likely not even that most times.

Wraiths

Sue me. I saved the best for last. I personally think this is one of the two all-stars of the book. After having played with Raveners for the last year in my Tyranids I’m not even sure I can properly sing the praises of this unit but I’ll try.

First off you can take 6 of these bad boys. This is a pretty huge number of multi-wound models and you can do it based for just 210pts. This is a unit that can hang for days against dedicated combat units and will just eat anything that isn’t dedicated to combat. They are fast and when combined with Solar Pulses (which are almost mandatory) they have the potential to reach combat virtually unscathed. You can use them in the offensive missile role or use them as a very mobile counter attack to screen your troops from units trying to punch them in the face. Overall they are way above par for their cost base though this does not mean they are undercosted. It means they are costed to integrate into the rest of the book well.

Let’s look at some of their options. You should ever take the heavy weapon. So let’s just go ahead and drop that idea. The pistol is an interesting choice and might be worthwhile but I only expect people to use it for wound allocation. The whip on the other hand I see quite a few people taking. Personally I’d probably only take 2 per 5-6 man squad. Always make sure that the closest model before the assault doesn’t have a whip that way you can maximize the attacks you drag off but more than that is overkill and the points will add up way to fast.

For me I don’t see myself leaving home without two units of five almost ever. They are just that good. What I think adds to it is that most armies won’t be able to counter them as easily as scarabs and that all the counters to scarabs are different than the counters to Wraiths. So I’m counting on you guys to keep bring Scarabs so people are more afraid of them than Wraiths J

Conclusion

You can tell from what I’ve written here I hope that I think the Fast Attack section is one of our best assets as Necron players. I’d go so far as to say it’s my favorite Force Org area from any codex. While to me Destroyers and Scarabs are relatively lackluster they are still solid choices overall and will see use. I think this is one of the first areas in a codex without a complete dud in it. Two of the choices in particular are going to cause people to change their lists and that’s always a good thing. Overall this is where I’ll be building my army of whenever I pick up the Necron codex. Hope you enjoyed. Discuss!

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