Monday, May 17, 2010

'Ard Boyz 2010 Report Card

So like last year I'm going to run down the army I took and, for better or worse, grade each unit based on the usefulness to the games I played.

Grade: A-
Game 1: Beat up some Raiders, Helped down Meph in a turn, got routed in combat with Death Company (due to boyz sqaud taking a boat load of wounds)
Game 2: Got stuck in and helped clear the 1ksons (avoided being Spawned), and killed 1/2 a zerker squad
Game 3: Helped kill Vyper squad, cleaned up FD squad, and I think another serpent also

If you can get him stuck in he doesn't disappoint.  I know end of game 1 he could have been used better, and game 2 1ksons were not 'choice' targets, but oh well.  Add in his uber Waagh and it is hard to not want to field him in my type of list at anything over 1750.  He's just a monster and, to my surprise, lived all 3 games (though was routed in Game 1 I suppose).

Big Mek, KFF, Evy Armor, Cybork, PK
Grade: A
Game 1:  Kept stuff alive, ended up PKing a bunch of assault marines and lived!
Game 2:  Kept stuff alive, forgot to deploy with 'Ard Boyz, eventually killed noise marines before being killed by PWs (no cybork saves)
Game 3:  Kept stuff alive.  I didn't even bother to get out of the BW as I didn't need him risking life and limb.

So I tried the extra wargear out and it was pretty nice.  Getting the extra Klaw attacks with the Nob catches people off guard.  The evy armor/cybork is really mostly there to dissuade people from throwing lots of attacks at him (as they would rather kill lots of orks to win combat) but didn't really help him be survivable beyond that.  Still his KFF is immensely helpful and is another reason I'll always take him.  I just don't know if in lower points the extra 40 pts of war gear is worth it as 1 of the 3 games it was totally pointless.

13 Lootas
Grade: B-
Game 1: Shot at Stormraven for 3 turns to keep it from moving/firing but could never down it, then blew the Death Company Dread away, then died in assault to marines.
Game 2: Survived lots of fire for first two turns but only managed minor damage to some rhinos and dread before being routed.
Game 3: Was assaulted on turn 2 and kept War Walkers tied up for 7 rounds of combat.

I'd say game 1 was all about what Lootas do well.  Game 2 was meh, but they took so much shooting I can't complain.  Game 3 was a hilarious fluke, but in the end worked out better for me than my opponent.

Of any unit in my army this is the one whose grade would only be improved by taking more.  3 blocks of 13 would have been amazing, 3 blocks of 9 would have also been huge.  Hell even 2 blocks of 9, which I almost picked up last Friday to run, would have probably been a big improvement.  Of any thing that is coming out of this tournament it is an order placed for more lootas.

Snikrot and his 12 Kommandos w/ Burnas
Grade: D-
Game 1:  Had no real good targets, failed at doing anything in assault to Strormraven and wiped out by Death company dreadnought.
Game 2: Had no real good targets so spent time glancing up rhinos before getting shot to death.
Game 3: Had no real good target so assaulted warp spiders, killing off 1/3 before being routed away.

Dissappointment.  Of.  The.  Day.

Sure I've seen how effective these guys can be, but at 2500 it seems like they just had far less opportunity.  I think they have more effectiveness in lower point games, but I don't think I'll ever run more than the 9 man squad I've grown accustomed to using.   At this tournament I'd have rather dumped them completely and used more lootas, which would be more useful against any opponent (even if they did leave some infantry in the backfield).

4 Manz with 3 Combi Weapons
Grade A
Game 1: After hanging out with Ghaz beating up some LRs, one survived Meph's assault, to jump back in BW to hold objective
Game 2: Assaulted 1ksons, killed them off before last man took PF from Zerkers
Game 3: Helped kill alongside Ghaz, think I had one left still at end of game.

For their points they are nice solid pieces.  This was the first time I ran 4 and I'm glad I did.  When I run 3 they almost never survive for me, but 4 seemed to help so maybe that is the tipping point.  I could be tempted to use more if it wasn't for the fact that it means a lot of eggs in 1 basket (considering Ghaz's and BW's cost).

20 Shoota boyz
Grade: B
Game 1: Held objective, not much else
Game 2: Charged rhino and DP, put on some wounds and helped kill some noise marines.
Game 3: Absorbed fire, I think killed off guardians and serpent.  Would have died if we kept going.

They did their job.  They aren't really great for much other than objective squatting in this list as the big blocks of boys are doing most of the heavy lifting.  I think I should have put them in reserve rather than the big boyz blocks, but that's all I think I could have done that might have been more sound tactically.

30 Sluggas with Rokkits
Grade: C
Game 1: One squad fought with assault marines and eventually lost, the reserve squad came on, PK'd a LR and contested an objective (damn unkillable Stormraven!).
Game 2: One squad moved up and popped a rhino, reserve squad came up and took some pot shots at noise marines.
Game 3: One squad popped a serpent, the other squad took lots and lots of STR 6 shots.

I have a soft spot for my big blocks, but when you look at the end result it's usually 'not a lot of killing but lots of taking up shots.'  The rokkits were 'meh' at best.  Having the big foot print is nice and people waste a lot of time killing a few boys at a time which is also a plus.  Once again playing my reserves differently might have helped the usefulness, but overall I can't say they were disappointing.  They just do what they do.

But really for 250 pts could I do better?  For 290 pts is 20 boys (with PK nob) in a decked out BW better?  I think the answer is yes.  If point are tight going down to sub 200 pts for 25 boyz and Nob (no rokkits) is probably just as effective as what I ended up running if it means getting more fire support elsewhere.

19 Ard Boyz
Grade: A
Game 1: Fought with Assault marines, won, had a few boyz running around at the end of the game with no objective near them.
Game 2: After sleeping in late in the BW got out and finished off the DP and killed off HQ sorc before finally getting routed/killed by the Noise Marines.
Game 3: Immobilized a serpent, killed off Fire Dragons, loaded back into BW.

This is a unit I never used much before but going forward will probably always use.  The fact that they can hang around in combat and shrug off some of the vehicle explosions that go off every game is big, too big to ignore in fact.  I wish I could take more than one squad.

Deff Dread w/ 2 Scorchas, Armor, Riggers
Grade:  D
Game 1: Routed Assault unit, Immobilized LR, Meltad to death.
Game 2:  Took shots, eventually melta'd.
Game 3:  Out of position did nothing.

No real surprises here as I knew this was I 'it fill points and I like the model' call.  Game 1 he was moderately useful, but in every way should those points have gone to Kans or Lootas.

3 Rokkit Buggies
Grade: B
Game 1: Stunned a LR, took pot shots, 1 mobile but gunless buggie left
Game 2: Shot at rhinos (stunned/shaken/weapon destroyed... nothing great), 1 mobile but gunless buggie left
Game 3: Took shots but was out of range most of game, not a scratch on them at the end.

They soaked up shots with that KFF nearby and gave me some shooting options.  They were never horribly effective (would be nice to actually POP a few things) but they filled the roll well.  Again running 3 was new, and that meant the difference between 'dead' and 'cowering' at the end of two games.  For the points I think they are still a great unit.

3 Killa Kans w/ KMB
Grade: B
Game 1:  Ineffective shooting at LRs, killed in combat with marines (damn your PF) but killed 1/2 a squad.
Game 2: Soaked up fire (thanks KFF) and popped the dread in turn 5.  Survived unscathed.
Game 3: A few pot shots, largely out of place against mobile eldar, but survived unscathed.

I'm not sure how I feel about the Kans overall.  I mean I love them, but they just never kill a lot.  They do eat up LOTS of shots with the KFF, and they do make people worry.  The KMB was pointless, but I know the few times it has helped against MCs and Oblits makes it worth the extra points.  Really though I think I should cut the KMB for rokkits if it means getting more in the list.  I have a feeling with Kans its a 'Get More or Take None' kind of a thing.

2 Battlewagons w/ Deffrolla, Red Paint, Grot Riggers, Armor Plates, BS
Grade: B
Game 1: 1 immobilized a rhino and lived as a bunker for my last MAN.  The other was popped early.
Game 2: Both delivered their payload (granted later than I like) and one survived and destroyed a rhino.
Game 3: Again both delivered payload.  I think one stunned a Serpant.  One was popped.

The deffrolla is frightening but didn't do nearly as well as I hoped.  I was never immobilized so the Grot riggers did nothing (though I still think they are needed) and Armor helped.  The BS is a 'wound' but the Red paint for me was forgotten for the most part when it would have mattered a whole one time (that it turned out not to matter much).

However what really counts the most is how many shots they suck up with the KFF.  Also the fact that the KFF range is made almost twice as big since you measure from the hull is huge as well.  All that makes for a great peice overall.

Overall Army Grade: B+
The army overall worked like I thought it would and felt comfortable to use.  I never felt like I walked into a situation where I couldn't predictably see what the outcome would be in the end (with the exception of the War Walkers and the Lootas).

That said if I could do it over (and money weren't an issue) I think that would have served me better would have been:

Big Mek, KFF, Armor, Cybork, PK
9 Lootas
9 Lootas
9 Lootas
4 Manz, 3 Combi, in BW w/ Armor, Deffrolla, Riggers, BS
18 Ard Boyz, Nob PK/Pole (in 2nd BW with Mek)
19 Shootas w/ 2 BS, Nob PK/Pole
25 Sluggas, Nob PK/Pole
25 Sluggas, Nob PK/Pole
3 Buggies w/ Rokkits
3 Buggies w/ Rokkits
BW w/ Armor, Deffrolla, Riggers, BS
3 Kans w/ Rokkits
3 Kans w/ Rokkits

Basically take out Snikrot and Kommandos, the Rokkits in the squad, the dread, a few boys, and downgrade KMBs to Rokkits on Kans.

You gain a two smaller squads for 3 loota squads, 3 more buggies, and another 3 kans with Rokkits.  I think this list would have provided a LOT more shooting capability but lost nearly nothing in its assault capability or staying power.

Of course I wasn't planning on buying 3 more loota boxes, 3 buggies (with that horrible kit), and a Kans box just for one game.  We'll see what I pick up over the next year though.  I know I want at least a few more lootas, I think I'd like to try my hand at converting the old ork trukks to buggies, and the new kans are pretty sweet.  :)

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