Sunday, 8 May 2011

Hybrid Deathwing List Thoughts plus some hobby shots!

So I was going to take inspiration from Venerable about posting my entire Blog Wars thoughts, but in honesty - the other lists I am looking at taking require me to finish off painting a few tanks plus 30+ marines (couple of IC's in there at the very least will require some loving), and while the temptation is there to speed out another army - I really want to finish off the details on my Deathwing and get a few tanks done to a standard bit better than my rush level.

Incidentally - the image there on the left is one of the testers for my mechanised part of my force - to be used with both my Deathwing Hybrid lists and my Blood Angels / Grey Knights. I've since "honed" the technique, and also discovered another way of doing marble on models (trial and error, gotta love it!) - In fact, it will do me a favour to get peoples opinion on this - here's the Vindicator I've done as a test in "the other" style of marbling.

Vindicator using non-sponge - blending / wet blending.

I plan on doing a post about this, hopefully Ven will let me do a weekend post for it, but basically the first tank is done using a sponge method, and then line painting afterwards, the vindicator is done using several layers of low blending followed by line highlights (plus non-line highlighting) to create that marble/streaky/vein effect. I honestly cant decide which I prefer - I am very tempted to use both techniques - be it to differentiate different companies or force org slots (for example "heavy" uses the vindicator style, fast/transport uses the sponge). Any thoughts on this as I'd like to get started this weekend (yes I appreciate its Sunday lol)


Deathwing Hybrid - What the what? 

So this is in no small part helped by Stelek's recent amendments to his Deathwing Ascendency lists recently - since the GK codex came out - the popular build for DW which involved a GK hero with a hood (81 points for a W1, S6 in combat IC with LD10 hood, bargain) is obviously invalidated. Stelek began to look at using things like Samael, Dakka pred's and mech in general to create these lists - causing issues for the opponent while no longer having psychic defence. I myself was looking at using either the LD9 hood from the normal libby (which gave you another command squad of sorts at the same time) or even Ezekial (bit pointy), other option was a Witch Hunter LD10 hood with a few bodies (probably totting either HB, MM or even Plasma Cannons) - real shame the INQ Lord isn't a IC to start the game.

Anyway - this was at a time when I was heavily re-assessing my Deathwing as it was - looking at what performed well and what didn't. I looked to see what the weaknesses were in my 1500 list, and moving to 1750 what I'd look to address in the units - I was adamant that I'd not just "add" to the 1500 but again go back to basics and look to see what I wanted and needed.

My biggest concerns and problems were not against the likes of MEQ or Mech Guard - the unshakeable CML's and just general resilience of the army stood up very well to the likes of these, where I had problems were against "non-net lists" and armies with heavy infantry or mixed mech / infantry - this created problems - simply said I was unable to cover enough targets with what I had.

Thus I started to look at the bikes - what they gave me and what they lacked in the list. Against mech they were great - outflanking or turbo boosting/scouting and blowing up tanks left right and center, however, they rarely, if ever, lived to see the end of games. They were just so easy to deal with - and vs anti-tank guns were almost guaranteed kills - meaning they spent a lot of time not deployed - which meant two things - one was that I'd have 1100 points starting on the table taking torrent, secondly - I couldn't be certain when, or sometimes where I'd be getting my bikers in.

Did their vulnerabilities and potential lack of reliability outweigh the benefits that they brought - which, plain and simply is mobile melta.

Its tricky to say, and I do need to do some more games without them, but the 30% of games where they do a great job, does that off set the 30% where they do literally nothing, and then there is 40% where they just pop a tank and maybe cause a distraction.

However, I did look at various options - losing melta means I lose that heavy anti-tank gun, but could I could potentially take a different route - throwing in mech gives the list a massive dynamic change. I looked at Stelek's inclusion of dakka preds - which offers the DW a big relief against infantry (especially GEQ) and also high powered weapon saturation (no longer are lascannons and melta necessarily going to be targetting your terminators). However, we all know that the name of the game with mech is saturation. Initially I looked at adding in a tactical squad, melta, lascannon razorback and a missile squad this gave me the option for a solid back field objective holder, would up my armour to 3 or 4 tanks and give me a lot of bodies on the floor - with 2xPreds and 1xTactical squad I would have also been able to fit in 3xSpeeders - giving me another 6 missile shots and 3x multi-melta's - this would be on top of 4x terminator squads - all scoring - looking like this:

4xTerminators (TH/SS, CML - single squad with Apothecary)
1xTactical (ML, MG, Razorback TL-LC)
3xSpeeders - Typhoon / MM
2xDakka Preds - AutoCan / HB

This began to look a little like a standard SM thunder bubble list - with a slight twist (more terminators, and all infantry is scoring, not just the marines). My concern was though that 4 of the 6 mech were quite flimsy - and I do not have the best of luck with mech it has to be said.

So, with a game lined up versus Atreides I did trundle off to test this - but in my rush to get to the game, I mis-packed quite a bit of stuff. I was one speeder short - and I didn't like the idea of running with only 2, also I wasn't 100% sure on what I wanted to do with the marines, I like the concept - but still had to work out what I'd do to make them useful (utilise them well essentially)

I had 3 painted dreads with me (well "cool" base coat), so I started thinking what I could do with these boys, essentially 4xTerminator squads act a bit like 4 squads of tactical marines in razorbacks, but oddly enough, a hell of a lot more survivable (and 4 KP's less). I looked at going triple AV13 - and then throwing in 3 dreads - this gave my armour a real bite - short of terrible luck, 6 AV12+ aren't going to go away quick, and it gave me a lot of target suppression - despite the lack of melta in the list - this is what (eventually) I came up with:

4xTerminator Squads (TH/SS CML - One with Apothecary)
3xDreads - TL-AutoCan x3, DCCWx2, Missile Launcher x1 (Heavy Flamer on one Dread, SB on other)
3xPredators - 3xAutoCannon 2xHeavy Bolters

Due to the points I couldn't run with triple dakka pred's - so one becomes a mobile autocannon platform - which is great as it becomes quite expendable, mobile cover for the dreads. Now the inverted thunderbubble - I guess its not really inverted - as your still using the thunder as the bubble lol -it actually almost becomes a tyranid type tactics/wrapped deployment here as well  if you need - TH/SS protect the AV13 (more than likely 5 terminators wrapped around a predator will give it 4++, though in our LGS I'll probably have to argue this quite a bit), Dreads sit behind the preds and shoot over (again this probably will cause arguments at the LGS, gotta love playing Atreides, none of these bullshit arguments). So its not bad for castling.

We got a game in - 4 objectives - his Straken list versus this dread/pred/terminator hybrid - spearhead with Atreides going first. The game was an absolute blinder, and of course, ended up a draw. It was in interesting game in that Andy took the midfield with Straken - my terminators and mech actually dealt with his mech quite well, and I made quite a bit of infantry disappear (he has ALOT of it) - I really think if I ran my bikes I'd have been mauled horrifically - though not sure how my tactical / speeder list would have fared. This was the ideal game for practice - the sort of list that worried the hell out of my Deathwing - mixed infantry / mech - and pulling off a hard fought draw (it came down to my final turn, where I shot one squad off the objective to secure a draw, and we had an epic battle in the middle where if I could get lucky and force his stubborn troops to run - but alas it wasn't to happen for a 2nd time in 1 turn!).

Other DW Lists:

In part due to what Ven said in his transparency thread, I thought why not just put the whole sherbang in here, here's a couple of other "monobuild / might be fun / comical" lists that I am contemplating, bashing around on the calculator with!

6xTerminator Squads - TH/SS - CML - One with Apothecary 

Well what does it offer? Zero melta, zero AP2 or better (unless hellfire rolls well!) but 30 TH's holding the midfield - and two SC's - which cost in total 300 points. Ezekiel - he comes in at a hefty 170 (for the codex) but what does he offer, 2+ (in keeping with the army) and force barrier is basically a LD10 invulnerable (its actually quite like the old school terminator save, which was a 2+ on 2 dice, this is basically a 3+ on 2 dice) master crafted everything and his 3 powers - the funky template of randomness, force barrier (above) and mind worm, which forces the opponent to take a LD check or forever lose the model - which against Logan isn't great - but against a Ork Warboss? Oh and fearless is irrelevant!

It actually wouldn't be as boring to play as you think.

The other list would be, double raider loving:

4xTerminator Squads - TH/SS - CML - One with Apothecary 
2x Land Raider Crusader (or at least one, and a god hammer - crusader does help with the lack of nades for belial)

This comes in at 1600, 150 left to play with - which could get me 3xbikes, 2xspeeders, a normal libby in TDA, a chaplin w/ combi or a venerable dread with autocannon/MM/asscan and DCCW/Heavy Flamer

Its interesting, the crusaders offer quite a bit to the list - mobile fire base (they basically put out the fire power of a tactical squad a turn, 6 to 12 bolter shots, 4 asscan shots, and offer MM as well) and really, REALLY do you want to use what will take them down - on them? I quite like the ven dread here as well - as he'll be hard to get rid of - or can just walk behind the raiders and counter punch whatever comes near them in the face.

It is by far the most rock of all rocks you can get, of course. This rock army doesn't even have sand below it to sit on. But again, who doesn't like using terminators in land raiders, and with this your becoming pretty much the king of midfield from T1 if you want,

Terminator / Hobby Update:

So obviously we saw my "WIP" finish up the other week - currently I am going back and touching up the terminators - I  need to re-do pretty much all the TH's - and 15 new shields - I was not happy with the storm shields at all - I rushed all 15 in a single night and actually repainted about 10 of them, I am planning on switching all out to Sang Guard wings (I might have to just bite the bullet and buy a couple of boxes, I actually don't like the Sang Guard wing's on the models anyway - much prefer normal jump packs).

I also need to go back and do some small things like the eye's - which will be done like below. I am testing out battle damage - but I might just tidy up the models with washes / re-highlights in spots.

Quite handy as well is that this is hiding the line highlights around the eyes that I wasn't that happy with!

Additionally here's some of the start of the new command squad I'll be doing - I am using a mix of normal terminators and Grey Knights here (mixing the legs - normal terminator bodies, some GK arms, all GK shoulder pads and helms). All 5 of the bases will be "scenic" with hopefully all 5 models in some form of action pose - no magnetising this time round. Also I am planning on painting these guys like the Vindicator above - this is party because I think it will contrast the army well - plus it will make Belial stand out in the squad really well.

Next Up:

Progress with the above lists, as well as a side on a couple of "fun" Blood Angels lists I am playing around with at our LGS for when I want to play around with some of the mech I am painting, plus when I don't feel like putting 20+ terminators on the table!

Also including some more pictures of the mech - hopefully with a finished (or near finished Land Raider). More to come!


  1. These models look incredible. It is refeshing to see a Space Marine theme that dares to break the norm.

  2. thats why i like them as well actually. they take the current trend of making everything look all realistic and gritty and throw it out the window. these look like they could have been painted any time between now and 1980, and not in a bad way.

    i must say that i am not a massive fan of the Vindi, but the SR looks really awesome. that sponge technique really helps with marble effects!

  3. Yeah the more I look at that Vindicator the less I like the actual look ... I really like the paint effect. It *might* work better on a Land raider though - but I am liking the colours / shading for the likes of my Sanginator model and even my command squad of terminators.

    And yeah, I'm still trying to perfect the art of early 90's eavy metal lol!

  4. I like the storm raven marble better than the vindicator.

  5. That painting looks amazing.

  6. The models look great mate, I am going to say the first method for the 'marbling' is better than the second..not sure about the Vindicator...

    Army lists are looking cool...think the dread/pred list is a strong one, but does leave you with only 4 squads of termies..I would have thought 5 would be what you we looking for ideally??

  7. finally got a chance to actually read this. the crusader list is actually very interesting!! it wouldn't scare me a great deal more than the others, but it is certainly different. a lot more susceptible to bad luck though, in an army that already suffers from that flaw...

    i liked the review of our game by the way, it gives a pretty fair assessment of what happened! still cannot believe that squad legged it despite the banner though ;)

  8. Cheers for the words on the SR/Vindicator - I think what it is, is that I like the colour/style of the Vindicator - but not on the actual Vindicator lol - its actually using a similar technique to Rupert over at 3++ (the straight lines) + the marbling we see on the new tomb kings. The model did take 40ish minutes and I didn't actually use marble as a reference so that's part of the reason to why the veins are a bit over done. But I think the Raven is the effect I want more - it looks a bit more like stone (the idea of having a bit of flying rock really appeals to me lol).

    I wanted to do a bit more on the game and talk about how you took midfield incredibly effectively with that Straken blob - and also talk about some of the targeting on both sides. Probabaly one of my favourite games we've had really (and we're at what, 11 or so now?)

    As for the lists,

    @ven - 4 scorers/units is the bare min, but with 6 high AV big threats they can present issues for other armies - its sort of trying to force decisions - torrent or suppression - very few lists really get to mix both (I think the closest is shooty SW or IG - and both prob would use their AP1/2 to suppress / kill AV - which is part of the goal - much like a normal thunder bubble list).

    @Atre - yeah the crusader list is interesting, it brings a couple of tactical squads to the table, some grenades and something to make melta go "hmm" - oh and a great place to hide that lone terminator after his squad gets shot down. Its by no means a perfect list, in fact its quite badly built (hard to make that last 150 points correct its issues) but it would be fun lol.

    Oddly enough the one list that really intrigues me atm is the 6x squads + Ezekial - I mean, 30 scoring terminators - you just wouldnt be scared of ... anything really. Except template weapons - not because of their actual S/AP just because they can scatter pretty much anywhere and hit something lol. I might have to give this list a pop on thursday if I can get these 5 terminators converted up in time.

    Also had a random thought - give the insane amount of RT / 2nd Ed terminators I have knocking around - I am really tempted to use them as marines - they are factionally smaller - things like the CML would look so cool as a count as Missile Launcher lol.