BATTLE REPORTS - PUBLIC GAME - REFLECTIONS - 3

This first appeared as a topic on the forum 40konline.com. To return to my batrep registry, click here.

Hey, everyone. I am writing this to be a reflection of my third 10 games that Iíve played with guard, containing lessons learned, along with some other ideas, as well as a request for input as for how I should continue from here.

THE STATS

My record after the first set was 8-1-1
My record after the second set was 4-3-3
My record after the third set was 8-2-1

In all of my public games, I have 20 wins, 6 draws, and 5 losses.

This set definitely went better, for a few reasons:

- Worse opponents. Yeah, it didn't hurt my record that I was playing predominantly teenagers here. It also didn't hurt that I played nearly half of these games against the same person. It will be interesting now that I'm in a point in our campaign where I can start playing some of the better people.

- More cautious playing. Yeah, I know. It's fun to watch a guard player rip down the field. Looking back at my previous reports, though, I can see that I'm playing more cautious in a good way. I'm doing a lot less deploying outside of cover, and I'm doing a lot less moving out of cover. As well, I'm taking greater advantage of the LOS blocking power of terrain. My movement has become more subtle, but effective, I think. Of course, there is always the exception of those sentinels...

- A better list. Sure, my list 3c wasn't a big leap away from 3b, but it definitely helped. Giving a powerfist to my officer meant that my officer actually killed stuff, which let me tie and win more combats. The lascannon that my platoon HQ got killed WAY more than that dumpy autocannon ever did (now I just have to actually swap out the model...)

THE LIST

In nearly every game in this set, I used [url=http://www.wizardhat.com/dove/list3c.html]list 3c[/url]

Once again, it's the same list at heart, but with the changes that were suggested after my last set of reflections. The only thing of extra note is that, after all the debate, I wound up keeping the demolisher.

HQ

In my last reflections, I said:

My only complaint is that I havenít gotten a lot of kills with my 5 rerollable attacks on the charge. Sure, when I DO get a kill, the sword makes its points back, but Iíd rather more consistently kill things. Iím thinking about adding a powerfist.

And, in fact, I did add that powerfist. I cannot say how much more happy I am with this fist's performance than the powersword. Thanks to this weapon, I actually win combats against my foes (which, in my opinion, is the best way to handle the morale issue) or, in the least, I usually tie them. True, it is harder to win it's points back, but the tactical edge I get I think makes up for it.

As well, I haven't noticed my officer getting picked out any more than he did with a power sword. I think when I tell my opponent "Well, you can either send all of your attacks against the officer, or you can attack the retinue and try to kill the priest, who lets everybody reroll all of their attacks", it causes a significant dilemma. If they attack the officer, they are pretty much stuck at getting two wounds, which my eviscerator will likely make, allowing me to at least tie the battle, and force him to kill me in his turn, or he can try and kill the priest, which basically always fails.

In the end, the only problem I've had is making sure that my command squad gets the charge, and occasionally, that it gets into close combat at all. The only real solution to this that I can think of is getting a chimera, but that's super expensive.

ELITES

It's been a while since I've had any of these in my army. I'm starting to think, though...

TROOPS

Platoon HQ: Last time, I was in a quandary: I liked my platoon HQ, but they weren't doing anything. In the end, I decided to give him a lascannon. This wound up being a great decision. Not only do I have a command squad that actually sticks around and gives leadership, but as well, the lascannon has actually killed stuff. I'd say I've done more destruction with that lascannon than all of the other from that squad in the first 20 games, twice. The only problem that I have is with the stormbolter. It was modeled to look cool (which it does), but it understandably hasn't done much. I'd like to swap him, but then I have to paint ANOTHER officer.

Infantry Squads: I feel exactly the same about these as I did last time. They make good screens, and enemy assault beacons, all while being cheap to boot. Plus, I have actually gotten to use their anti-light-infantry killfest weapons a couple of times, which has been nice. I don't foresee any changes to these guys any time soon.

Armored Fist: Once again, I'll just have to mirror my comments from last time. I love this unit, and there isn't a lot I could see changing about it.

FAST ATTACK

My love for my sentinels keeps on growing ever more. I love the options I have with these guys. Not only can I take down big scary things ("feel this pain), but as well, I can act like a complete loony with them and get away with it. Time for me to get a job so that I can buy another one!

HEAVY SUPPORT

Basilisk: For how bad my basilisk's aim was in the last set, it was even worse in this set. Of all the shots over 10 games, I think I've scored a direct hit maybe a half a dozen times. I suppose that just means that it's karma is due. Also, I have noticed that the basilisk is starting to pick up some of the function of my infantry squads. My opponents are starting to take undue measures to kill my basilisk, thus making it a beacon for deepstrikers and assaulters. I think it's high time I use this to my advantage. What could I do?

Demolisher: This time, my demolisher's survivability was back up to it's first set levels. However, I have been very unimpressed with this tank's killing power. In 0 of my 10 games, the demolisher made it's points back, and in most of them it didn't even make a small fraction back. It's nice having a mobile VP denier and all, but I'd personally rather blast him off the field and deny him VP's that way.

Last time, I was very seriously considering dropping this vehicle, but I didn't have the guts. This time, I really think that it has to go.

Anyways, thatís a quick runthrough of my list, and what itís generally done. The following are a few changes that Iíd like to make, and would really appreciate your advice on.

Stuff to Drop: Demolisher (I mean it this time)

Possible Stuff to Drop: Platoon HQ storm bolter, army HQ meltagun, standerd bearer bolt pistol

If I dropped all of these things, I would have 210 pts. to throw around.

I have a few objectives with these points:

- Find something that can equivocate the las/plas of the demolisher (or the cannon). Basically, the one thing that this tank can do that I can't easily replace is the ability to kill terminators.

- Add mobility to my army as a whole

- kill space marines slightly better.

And here are a few things that Iím thinking. I would really appreciate it if you guys could come up with your own as well.

1 5-man 3 plasma gun vet squad + basilisk

This would be the kind of choices. Give my opponents two basilisks to beat their brains silly over. Plus, it would add marine killing power by quite a bit. While it would make my army even more static, a basilisk would be able to support the other side of my lines better. With the extra 10 pts, I could possibly add another vet, or give the sarge a plasma pistol (heheh), or give carapace armor to my officer, and use the other 5 pts. for bionics for Melchoir, or keep the storm bolter on my JO so I don't need to make a new model.

1 5-man 3 plasma gun vet squad + hellhound

This setup would give me the terminator killing power of the vets + a lot of mobility with the hellhound. Plus, the hellhound is about as good against tightly packed terminators than a demolisher anyways (unless the demolisher scores a "hit", which it tends not to do). Plus, this would keep some of the intimidation factor of the demolisher in play, and perhaps cause people to errantly target it. As well, I think that it would be more fun to run around with a hellhound.

I would assume to give the vehicle extra armor and smoke grenades. This gives me 12 pts. to play with, which could be used to give the hellhound a stubber. As well, I could spend 10 of the pts. in the same way as above, and give my JO and the standard bearer bolt pistols.

1 5-man 3 plasma gun vet squad + 2 lascannon sentinels

It only makes sense, given my love for sentinels, to add more. The question, in the end, becomes me wondering if I can still be as crazy and goofy with them if I have 4 on the table. In the end, this option gives me the least firepower, but the most flexibility.

This plan does carry another advantage: it's cheap. This setup gives me 25 pts. to play with. These points could be used to put hardened fighters, iron discipline, or die hards on my command squad (yes, I'd consider it), or a regimental standard (which would keep my fighters in the battle more often, as well as give me a "wound" against things that I can't otherwise easily injure). Alternately, I could give a refractor field or a rosarius to my command squad, or an honorifica imperialis to someone (I don't know who, though).

Anyways, these are just a couple of ideas. What do you think?

THE OVERVIEW

So, Iíd like to impart a few of the lessons that Iíve learned in my second set (to help noobs, and to compare it to vetsí advice).

- During this time, I wrote [url=http://www.40konline.com/community/index.php?topic=141984.0]The Ailarian Way of War[/url] which describes some of the lessons I've learned in movement and deployment.

- If you are going to be doing close combat with a command squad, you've got to be very careful with how you position your troops. It is really easy to wind up in close combat (especially if you're charged) without your officer in base to base with anyone. As well, it is easy for an opponent to remove the one or two models that were in base to base, making it very possible that you can't get any hits off in retaliation. As well, you've got to look out for fast units. What a pain those have been for me!

- Drop pods are really good! Not only can you not be destroyed by deepstriking, but as well you get a free, LOS blocking piece of terrain to hide behind. As well, you get a free storm bolter to boot :D I haven't yet figured out how to beat them, but they are definitely a challenging little thing.

- Tooled up guard command squads suck. Unless you take a priest and can start charging ( ::) ) having a 200 pt. command squad can't possibly make it's points back. Think carefully about what actual benefit you will be getting from wargear before you slap it on there.

Anyways, thatís it for the reflections on my second set of ten games. I hope that you have enjoyed reading the reports (and trust me, there will be more), and I look forward to comments that you may have on either the games themselves, or what I should do with my list, or things that you have found to be true on an abstract level when commencing field strategy. Thanks for reading!