Tactics day! As I've previously said I'm not master stratego but I like to at least think out my tactics and its good to get feedback from these as I often have to theory these a lot more than practice them due to generally not getting that many games in, but also an extreme reluctance to play with unpainted miniatures. Though with the Dark Angels being given more thought to being an army for tournaments I may be relaxing that rule but we shall see. Today I will chat about how I plan to combine the Battle Demi-Company and the Dark Angel's Librarius Conclave.
So the Demi-Company is fairly restrictive in what you can take, but fortunately there are no bad choices here. The required squads are 3 tactical squads, a devastator squad, an assault squad and a Company Master or a Chaplain. These should really be designed as shooty for the most part, with the grim resolve special rule being boosted to BS3 for overwatch in this formation, so overwatch will be hitting on a 4+ putting any charge as a real question to your opponent. In games where objectives need to be claimed and given that Dark Angels are stubborn and objective secured (all units in this formation) will make them tough to shift.
Because I am not taking any flyers in this army I want it to be mobile where possible to let me out manoeuvre flying arcs where I can or spread my threats around the table so that they have to really pick their target priority.
Below are the unit set up I've settled on, with wiggle room for a few alterations as discussed below.
Company Master - artificer armour, storm shield, relic blade, Lion's Roar (Review)
Company Veterans - Apothecary, 4 x meltaguns, Drop pod
Assault Squad -10 Assault Marines, Sergeant with Power Maul, 2 x flamers, Jump Packs
Devastator Squad - 5 Devastators, Veteran Sergeant, 4 x Grav guns with Grav Amps, Drop Pod
Tactical Squad - 10 Marines with Sergeant, 1 x plasma cannon, 1 x plasma gun
Tactical Squad - 5 Marines with Sergeant with plasma pistol, 1 x plasma gun, drop pod
Tactical Squad - 5 Marines with Sergeant, plasma cannon
Now when I originally designed this force I had veteran sergeants in all the squads when only the devastators really needed it, as they won't be accompanied by an independent character as I will discuss below. This has freed up a few points to spend on something so I need to have a bit of think on that.
Now, all I need to make this a Lion's Blade Formation is to add a squad of scouts. I haven't designed the base army to be like that, as I know that some tournaments I attend have restricted the use of "formation of formation" like the Decurion for example. They will still allow three separate formations together, but not when that grants them even more benefits for being together. Whether that's right or wrong is up to you to decide but it means I do have to factor that in to my army design.
If I do take the Lions Blade I will probably make up the points by using the veteran sergeant points that will probably be spent on upgrades plus dropping marines from the 10 man tactical squad to pay for the scouts. The scouts will be given sniper rifles and camo cloaks to camp in cover or on an objective (hopefully both) and ping at things from long range.
These guys are going to play a key part in how this armies gels on the tabletop and I have yet to completely decide on the optimal table to roll for my powers on so input in to that would be very useful.
Ezekiel - Review
Librarian - Level 2, bike, conversion field, Shroud of Heroes force sword
Librarian - Level 2, jump pack, conversion field, force stave
Librarian - Level 2, conversion field, force stave
Librarian Level 2, conversion field, force sword
So here we have two mobile librarians, these can get up field and make best use if their offensive powers and all of these guys will be tough to shift because of their 4++ from the conversion fields, plus the librarian on a bike is toughness 5. Ezekiel brings mega mastery levels and +1 attacks to anyone within 6 inches of him (models not units) which is great if the enemy does assault you and survives your epic overwatch, but not something you want to rely on. His warlord trait is pretty useless granting fearless to units within 12 inches. Not something stubborn space marines desperately need. The company master is going to be the Warlord most likely, with ablative wounds from the company command squad and a 2+/3++ behind it making him much more survivable.
Running the Company and Conclave together
So the key here is the buffing powers of the Librarians and the mobility of the force. Working these together should make this a fairly formidable if fairly elite force to be reckoned with.
The mobility aspect comes in with assault marines and the drop pods. 2 pods will be coming down turn 1 and these will be the devastator unit and the company command squad. The company command squads melta guns should be able to deal with any armour that they come across, the Company Master will come with them to tank wounds and provide melee support as well as fire off his assault plasma cannon if needed. Matching him with AP1 high strength weaponry means his cannon will be able to hurt what they should be shooting at.
The devastators with their grav amps will be targeting whatever gribbly high save unit the enemy has out, or it also has the option of glancing some vehicles to death on 6's. These guys will be targeted early and need to make themselves count when they arrive. If I take the scouts in the Lion's Blade formation I may give them a locator beacon to make landing easier for the devs or vets. Because of my foray into magnets I am also keeping it open that the command squad can have grav guns and have a sacred standard instead, this would give them relentless and allow them to fire their grav guns at full effect the turn they arrive. This would require points saved elsewhere however to pay for the additional 5 points a weapon.
The drop pods for these guys are objective secured remember, so something your opponent must deal with if you can land them on objectives!
The Librarian on bike has the shroud of heroes which gives him a 2+ cover save when jinking as well as having T5 and a 4++ invulnerable, making him a tough customer. His mobility should let him be in prim position to fire off other librarians powers or his own. This guy runs solo as the shrouding doesn't work if he is in a unit.
The jump pack librarian will run with the assault marines giving them support with his leadership and using them as a shield while keeping pace with the bike librarian to swap powers as needs be. Again a 4++ makes him that bit harder to shift. The assault marines will score so that makes them a threat to be dealt with in an objectives game.
The other 2 librarians will run with each of the tactical squads, Ezekiel will camp with the 10 man squad and the librarians will sit themselves with the other 2 squads. One squad will come drop podding in from turn 2+ giving some tactical flexibility depending on how the games evolves. But dropping in to enemy lines will also make it easier for the jump pack and bike librarians to get within 12 and share powers.
I'm definitely going to give the bike librarian interromancy so that he can get good angles to fire the now 24 inch range power Mind Worm at the opponents armies nastiest model. This is the primaris so he is guaranteed to get it.
I'm thinking I will roll on Telepathy with Ezekiel and the librarian that sits in the stationary 5 man squad. Hopefully this should give me shrouding and/or invisibility that can be cast on the units to maximise their survival chances and have psychic shriek as an offensive back up from primaris.
That leaves the jump pack and drop podding librarians to roll. I am thinking on rolling on divination and pyromancy for each of them. Thus giving me up in your face offensive and defensive powers that can be dished out by either of them if within 12 inches of other librarians. I would really appreciate anyone's thoughts on that.
Well there are my thoughts and tactics so far on this particular force. Please do comment, I always get back to people!