December 5, 2011

Battle Report: Necrons Team Game

The Moral Of This Tale; Watch Your...Well, You Get It.

It's no secret that when playing against a Deep Striking army, more specifically Drop Pod armies, you should always be prepared to take a shot or seventeen up the rear. However, I feel like this isn't taken as seriously as it should at times. Everyone at our table took Deep Striking possibilities seriously, of course; we're just cool like that, but the overall thought process that goes into Deep Striking is typically incorrect from what I've gathered over the years. It's not about denying your opponent the chance to Deep Strike, it's about denying them the confidence to do so. Placement down the board is just as important as placement of units up the board when it comes to fighting against a Deep Strike army. You'll see what I mean in the pages to come.

My list this week was a bit boring. It was my attempt at not proxying anything:

210 - Overlord w/ warscythe, mindshackle, phase shifter, rez orb, phaeron

260 - Warriors x20
65 - Warriors x5
65 - Warriors x5

Fast Attack
120 - Wraith x3 w/ 1x whip coil, 1x particle caster
75 - Scarab Swarm x5

Heavy Support
200 - Monolith

About This List
As I said, this was an anti-proxy list. Hence the lack of a Royal Court, more Scarabs and the fact that the Monolith exists. Now, if you know me you know I absolutely hate putting more than 150pts into a generic HQ, so why is this Overlord decked out? Well, out of my models I have 30 Warriors. If there's one thing I've learned about close combat with Necrons, it's that the only way to deal with it is have groups so small you don't care if they die or so big they can outlast the opponent; that's what my Troops section was. The two 5man units cap points and the Overlord hangs with the 20man posse rolling up the board; and this worked perfectly. Twenty Warriors with a 4+ RP on any wounds is hard to deal with for any army, and can't be ignored; that's what this group was for. A distraction and a semi-hammer unit. Yes yes, I know I condemn those who live by hammer units, but I'm just working with what I've got here. Other than my Troops everything else is pretty obvious. There are no tricks to this list, just a simple foot-slogging push-forward army. It feels like 3rd Edition Necrons, doesn't it?

The Setup
Team Grop Tod
1500 Tech-Guard (Ghengis)
1500 Drop Pod SM (Mr. Lemon)
Team NecGually Vulkan
1000 Foot 'crons (me!)
1000 Tech-Guard (Ster-fry)
1000 Vulkan SM (Senior Darrel)

Game Type: Kill Points
Deployment: Pitched Battle
Initiative: NecGually Vulkan

We deploy first. I spread out 2" apart with my giant Warrior squad, fearing two Leman Russ' on team Grop Tod; luckily they didn't deploy on my side, but the third Leman Russ with 20 S5 shots did. Vulkan's Dread set up next to me. 5 Warriors to the right of him. Vulkan and 5 SMs in a Rhino in front of a Chimera to the right of that.

Then an IG Troop to the right of that. Wraiths to the right of that. A Leman Russ behind Vets getting into a Troop's Chimera to the right of them. Easy-bake-over Leman Russ to the right of them. 5man SM squad to its right and a 10man SM squad in a Rhino to the right of them. And finally my other 5man Warrior squad behind the 5man SM unit.

Essentially, since this was a Kill Points game my tiny Troops became a liability instead of a game-winner. With that, Senior Darrel and I "filled the gaps" of our deployment zone and Ster-Fry left some stragglers from his foot-Troop in our backfield. While a Drop Pod would certainly fit in our deployment zone, we made it so any sort of scatter would cause problems. And speaking of Deep Striking, I left my Monolith in reserve as Deep Striking melta is the bane of the slowest moving and bulkiest vehicle in basic 40k... This was good as our opponents rolled to steal initiative and stole it.

Turn 1: Grop Tod
Drop Pods fly in from the sky as Mr. Lemon's Troops start splitting off into cover.

The Command Squad's pod also drops in near my hammer unit, but the unit decides to hide behind the pod. The number of Warriors is daunting, but I was hoping my opponent's previous melee sessions with Warriors would entice them to go for it. Oh well... Vehicles all across the board move forward and fire way!!!

And a Warrior falls...

And then gets back up. If Necrons could smirk, this one would have.

Over on the other side of the board, two of Senior Darrel's SMs kick it. And that's about it for team Grop Tod's turn.

Turn 1: NecGually Vulkan
A Drop Pod dropping in on Drop Pods? Madness... Or at least I assume. For the entirety of the game I saw melee, shooting and falling back of Space Marines on both sides all within the confines of these two ponds. I honestly didn't pay as much attention to this side of the board since neither side had an overwhelming amount of long-range and I had nothing on that side of the board save my 5man Warrior unit slogging it.

Scarabs move 6", run 4" and charge 10" at a Hellhound that moved 12", manage to bring it down to 7/9/9 and explode it! I will repeat and continue to repeat myself; anyone who claims Scarabs are worse than they were before is a moron. I'm getting more blunt on this subject. Last time 5 Scarabs exploded a Land Raider and wrecked a Chimera at the same time in one charge and now this. Seriously haters; what's wrong with you?

Wraiths push forward ignoring all that terrain business and assault a 5man SM squad and kill off a single marine.

The Phaeron leads his robo-zombies forward and thanks to being relentless the Warriors manage two Weapon Destroyed results removing that pesky Heavy Flamer.

Turn 2: Grop Tod
Another Drop Pod flies in and lands a Dread right next to a Chimera. Unfortunately for Mr. Lemon the melta whiffs and the Chimera is safe to fire back next turn.

More SM on SM shooting goes on. More Wraith on SM melee goes on. We're slowly whittling the Dark Angels numbers down. However, a unit of Terminators come in off the Command Squad's beacon shaking things up a bit. A Leman Russ, Chimera, Drop Pod and unit of Termies all fire into my Warriors and kill off 12 of them only to have 8 stand back up.

Turn 2: NecGually Vulkan
I see your Drop Pod and raise you a Monolith! My reserve Deep Strikes successfully behind enemy lines and manages to stun a Chimera with melta inside...

...and explodes the Chimera close to my Overlord, pinning those who were inside of it!

My Overlord's unit, a Dread and my 5man Warriors unit get into position to force some 1's on those Termies, managing to shoot them all down but four.

Space Marines on both sides fall back here and there. Wraiths prepare to assault some more SMs and end up chasing them off the board. Scarabs all die to the Command Squad's melee. Leman Russ' on both sides exchange fire, but I don't recall much happening.

Assault between the Overlord/Dread and the Termies went well for us. I attempted Mindshackle, but only a Powerfist was in base-to-base so Mr. Lemon let that fellow die off before he had a chance to punch his buddies. With the Warscythe and the Dread's DCCW, it was just too much for the Termies to handle.

Close combat between Vulkan's unit and the Command Squad seems to be going in Vulkan's favor, and he continues to hold his title as "The Unwoundable."

The Wraiths chase down their prey, though don't engage, simply wishing to scare them off the board.

IG manage to blow the dropped-in Dread to pieces; they don't much like Dreads shooting at their Chimeras. Overall a great turn for team NecGually Vulkan.

Turn 3: Grop Tod
With a Monolith's portal close by, Ghengis decides to risk a Troop choice to killing off the Wraiths making scary faces at their Space Marine buddies. With a marbo-special, shotguns and a Plasma Gun and 3 Space Marines backing them; shots are all unloaded into the Wraiths with only 4 wounds left...and only 1 wound goes through. Gotta love 3++ save! Unfortunately for me the IG were extra ballsy today and decided to assault (though I'm not sure in retrospect how they did so when one of them shot a Plasm Gun,) forced a Ld check (I forgot they're Fearless now, as well...), sweeping advanced them and stare in awe as IG have won close combat.

Side note; I know Wraith's don't get WBB/RP rolls anymore, I just wanted this picture to be more dramatic.

More SM fighting goes on that I wasn't paying attention to. Drop Pods get weapons blown off. Leman Russ' peck away at each other. And God cries.

Turn 3: NecGually Vulkan
With Terminators dealt with, the Dread and Overlord's unit assault the Leman Russ and group that was previously inside a Chimera exploding the LR and killing off the remaining IG while losing a single Warrior.

IG did some Chimera swapping to get ready to take out some Drop Pods along with my 5man Warrior unit that had done jack-diddly all game long.

My other 5man Warrior unit managed a Weapon Destroyed result on the Command Squad's Drop Pod. The Monolith slurps over to the IG hoping to remove some from the table (especially the 2 meltas,) but rolls a 2 for range and can't reach any of them...

Turn 4: Grop Tod
...which is very bad for me. Those melta-guys are vengeful bastards and explode my Monolith.

And yet the Monolith lights back up, remembering only one month ago it was immune to melta effects! (Just kidding.)

Fighting between Vulkan The Unwoundable and a lone Command Squad Marine continues...

And Vulkan has the last laugh...

Turns 4 and 5
Necrons look upon the horizon, thinking of simpler times of 3+ armour saves and confusing FAQs...

Vulkan catches up to those pesky Monolith-killing IG and removes a couple of bodies from the battlefield.

More shooting from Leman Russ' continues with not much happening there. Warriors shuffle around. IG kill off some Drop Pods. Vulkan Space Marines hide from Leman Russ fire. Really, not much happens on either side. We roll for Turn 6:

Turn 6
Again, not much happens. Vulkan finishes off that last IG and that's pretty much game; Team Grop Tod only has two Leman Russ' left and their shots are just as full of whiff as Ster-Fry's shooting is.

Bottom of Turn 6, Our Left Side

Bottom of Turn 6, Our Right Side

We roll for turn 7 and the game ends.

What I Learned
Despite those in the community making wild claims that the decked-out Overlord with 20 Warriors or even the Necron codex as a whole is horrible; I suggest you actually play the codex or play against someone who knows what they're doing before you give your oh-so valuable two cents. The Warrior hammer-unit works and works well. I started out with 21 guys in the unit and ended with 13. That may not seem like much, but consider this; how many times was this unit shot at? Let's count it out:

Once by a Command Squad.
Once by a Terminator Squad.
Twice by a Chimera.
Twice by a Psyker and Grenadiers.
Three times by a Leman Russ Punisher.
Three times by a Drop Pod.
And finally in assault with a Psyker and IG Troop for one round.

So, did 470pts of Overlord and Warrior pay for itself? In points they killed, it's debatable. They helped kill off Terminators, a Drop Pod, a Chimera, an IG Troop and Psyker and a Leman Russ. They definitely had some help from Senior Darrel's Dread, so splitting those points evenly they didn't really pay for themselves. But look again at the list above, how many shots did they absorb only to lose 8 models at 13 points a piece? I think it's safe to say this unit paid for itself and then some. The whole 4+ Res Orb on any wound is nothing to laugh at. However, it's only worth it with a massive unit like this. To get a Res Orb and a Lord/Overlord out there you're spending a lot of points already. My suggestion; bring at least 16-17 Warriors/Immortals to make a Res Orb worth it. Otherwise, just bring smaller groups with Crypteks.

Now let's talk Monolith. I'm sorry, but I hate it now... Strength reduction on all weapons, no more portalling units out of close combat, a massive model able to mishap and can only reserve if Deep Striking followed by no more immunity from melta. All of that for a 30pt reduction... It makes me sad inside. I'm willing to admit the Monolith was undercosted in 3rd Edition, I am. My problem now is that it's still slow. If it wasn't slow and had a chance to escape melta this thing would be better (or if you could portal units out of close combat of course.) The choice I had to make was try and chase down a unit with melta and maybe kill the melta within or try and run away probably get melta-ed next turn; in both cases I'm too slow for it to matter. I'm not saying I want melta-immunity back and those that do I think want it overly easy for themselves. I want to move like a normal vehicle so I can build a strategy around that movement; not eenie-meenie-miney-moe my way between the lesser of two evils.

I have to say, one thing this list has taught me is that GW is evil. While old models aren't useless like GW has the habit of doing, they're certainly not interesting. A list I enjoy playing is going to require me to purchase some vehicles and Crypteks...

Finally, a little something for myself. I figure if I write this down enough I'll actually remember it. Wraiths are now Fearless. Wraiths are now Fearless. Wraiths are now Fearless. Wraiths are now Fearless. And also, Wraiths are now Fearless.

Until next time.


  1. So, the one victory our side has you cheapen by declaring it an illegal assault and an illegal sweeping advance. Just rip the silver lining out our cloud will you.

  2. Thanks for that - a good report with the appropriate amount of detail, and it taught me something about the army too (i.e. that I'd better start slipping some pennies into the Necron budget for next year).

  3. @Mr. Lemon
    lol, I didn't mean to throw salt in the wound...

    Check back in 6 or so hours. We'll have a special post going up I think you'll enjoy.