Riptides... some guys really hate playing against more than 1.. in fact many comments and blog posts around the blogosphere would say that 2+ riptides takes you away from friendly list building and straight into competitive territory. They may not put out as much damage for their points as Crisis Suits, but there is no denying that in the current meta they are super effective.
Well then, with that in mind... let's take at least 4 of them, just to mess with you!
I just smile when I write that.
Could be 5!
But that's just obnoxious!
Shit, wait, that's the point isn't it!?
Ven here, back with another obnoxious army that is ruining your day...globally! Whether you are here in the UK or in the States.. or somewhere else... like .... Lichtenstein... there are army's that you hate to play or just feel overwhelmed by.
This is number 4.
We have covered so far - Farsight Bomb, Screamer Council, TauDar and now another gem from the little fish men.. O'Vesa.
A simple concept, given life through the allies matrix and the Farsight Enclaves codex supplement. O'Vesa is a cool ass Riptide, part of Farsight's 8...his counsellors, confidants and general strategic bitches that he has picked up over his unnaturally long life. O'Vesa is an Independent Character (IC) Riptide and almost straight away we can see the fun here - Take O'Vesa and throw him in a unit with another Riptide.
After the jump we'll talk about the benefits of this list, how it works and what it does.
O'Vesa comes with 2 Shielded Missile Drones, Ion MuthaFucka Cannon, TL Fusion, Interceptor, Stims (FNP) and the Earth Caste Pilot Array - to reroll 1's to hit in shooting phase but more importantly with his load out, to reroll failed Nova attempts.
So pretty decent, but certainly nothing to phone home about. He shines when we add in Farsight to his unit for some CC ability - 2 Riptides grants 6 MC attacks in CC or 8 on the charge in a resilient platform. Farsight adds a bit more.
Where the unit really becomes cool is the addition of the now compulsory Buff Commander to the mix. Now we have 2 riptides that can benefit from Tank/Monster Hunter, 2 Riptides Ignoring Cover, 2 Riptides that are TL with their main gun... we also have more wounds to soak up with a 2+ save from Iridium Armour and Hit and Run for a large amount of added mobility to the unit from the Vectored Retro Thrusters, using Farsight I5 (failing on a 6 only ... just like DE Baron lol). Hit and Run is massive for this unit as it keeps it moving and keeps it moving fast - 6" move, assault up to 12" then a 3" Pile In and a 3D6 Hit and Run move. That combination sees the O'Vesa Star move up to 39" in a turn whilst shooting TWO targets (Target Lock on the non-O'Vesa Riptide) and charging one, putting itself in a cracking position for the next turn, whether that is safety from Wraithknights or Screamer Councils or to aggressively plonk itself in the enemy lines.
Now this is of course NEVER going to happen.. you'll typically move 6", charge 7" average, 3"
consolidate and 11" average H&R - 27". Still pretty quick!
Worth noting as a brief aside, whenever the O'Vesa is looking likely to charge or to be charged by a unit that could do significant damage to it or cause more casualties via being resilient, then using the Puretide Chip on the Buff Commander we simply select Stubborn to test on LD10.
So now we have a majority T6 unit that can really hurt the enemy in multiple ways and from a significant distance. Let's consider the other Riptide in the star for a minute.
What I think this list really needs is some Heavy Burst Cannon (HBC) action, however with the Earth Caste Pilot Array signature system being used by O'Vesa, the Burst Cannon becomes a less promising prospect. There is a lot of merit to grabbing the HBC and Skyfire with a Target Lock - he benefits from being Twin Linked and Ignoring Cover as well as possible Tank Hunting. This makes him an effective air hunter, however due to his need for split firing from the Star, he loses the ability to Intercept the fliers as they come on. This means the fliers can get to where they need to be and do damage in their own turn...I mean honestly, letting your opponent do what their models are designed to do...that is NOT obnoxious! I think Skyfire is less worth the points/hard point than Interceptor as the HBC can still have an excellent impact on Outflanking units and Deep Strike units. In addition, we'll be running Skyrays in this list with their Skyfire Markerlights - they can boost the BS of the HBC Riptide against flying targets and voila, we have synergy driven point efficiency.
The second Riptide should always grab the 2 Shielded Missile Drones as well. This adds 2 more T6 wounds to the Star and it also adds 4 more S7 shots. Now granted, these shots are only BS2 - so that's hitting on 5's - but they are benefitting from all the same goodness as the Riptides - TL, IC, T/MH. This makes them more accurate than BS3 missiles and overall more effective.
The final element in the O'Vesa Star is the decision to grab the Talisman of Arthas Moloch. This cheeky little number will net your army 4D6 Deny the Witch for all units within 12". The nature of the O'Vesa star means that the Rip group will want to either be the core of a long range defensive setup or it will want to control the board and objectives through mid-table positioning. In either case, the Talisman provides excellent psychic defence to the Star (where a significant concentration of your points is) and to any of your units that you chose to keep close - in principal, your other Riptides.
Keeping your other Riptides close means that you can support the Star if necessary in CC (not likely sure) but it also means that you can jump Farsight, O'Vesa and Buff Commander to whichever Riptide you feel you need. Whilst these Riptides are really 'lesser' units compared to the Star and its Riptides, you may want to if the situation calls for it. The Talisman's range and centralised grouping also means that should you/when you split the Star into its constituent parts, you can still provide excellent psychic defence.
So we have some CC, strong shooting, excellent mobility and resiliency as well as buffs to the army in terms of psychic defence. Solid indeed.
That's just the Deathstar itself covered! The rest of the army is filled out with Skyrays, Kroot, the mandatory 3 man Crisis unit and another little single (Monat) Crisis suit acting like a Solodin for line breaking/contesting. This dude is equipped with a single Missile Pod, just to lob out 2 S7 shots into rear armour via Deep Strike etc. Other options for this guy are to equip him with 2 Flamers for deck chair troop slaying or to grab 2 Burst Cannons - once again to kill off stuff you really don't want to have to shoot a Riptide at.
The list? Let's recap it:
Buff Commander - Iridium, MSSS, C&C Node, Puretide Chip, Vectored Retro Thrusters, Onager Gauntlet (optional)
Riptide - Ion MuthaFucka Cannon, TL SMS, Interceptor
Riptide - Ion MuthaFucka Cannon, TL SMS, Interceptor
SkyRay - Blacksun Filter, TL SMS
SkyRay - Blacksun Filter, TL SMS
O'Vesa (FNP, 2 SMD, TL Fusion, Ion, Earth Caste Array, Interceptor)
Riptide - 2 SMD, Burst Cannon, TL Fusion, Interceptor, Target Lock, Talisman of Arthas Moloch (optional)
3 Crisis Suits - 3 Missile Pods
Crisis Suit - Missile Pod
And that's it...Doesn't feel like a lot and it doesn't look too scary on paper. On the table top however is where this beast shines. It looks intimidating as hell on the table top and is definitely an obnoxious army. Getting through 4 Monstrous Creatures that have FNP and other shenanigans is a pain in the arse, combined with a 2+ save and a possible 3++.
This obnoxious army will be hitting you hard from turn 1 and can utilise its range to keep itself safe for a turn if going second.
Troops generally outflank (kroot) in order to stay alive and claim the backfield objectives, the Crisis 3 man team can start on the table and just harass people with missile shots...the Monat single suit deep strikes and goes for line breaker and rear armour shots for lols...alternatively, he just hides out of line of sight and uses his mobility to keep safe.
Mobility is maintained through jet pack thrust moves, often at very high speeds and outflanking or deep striking troops. Nothing has to remain stationary after turn 1 (skyrays) in order to be fully effective and long range effectiveness is pretty much nailed via Riptides and Skyrays. Resilinecy is definitely a tick in the box too with the O'Vesa star and 2 other Riptides causing headaches all game long.