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Cataphractii- how to use them


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#1
Firepower

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So I found a box of these fellas online for half price and figured 'Why not?'  I recall one game where the GW manager thrashed my guys with a combination of lightning claws, fists and a Terminator Chaplain.  But for general purposes, I'm not entirely sure what their role and ideal load out is.

 

Are they a good assault unit?  They don't have hammers and shields like Assault Terminators, but still have solid smashy options and are rather tough without shields regardless.  However, they are also slower.

 

Are they meant to be fire support?  They can put out a decent amount of dakka, and rock a Heavy Flamer.  But Terminators seem better suited for a pure shooty approach as well, between the Assault Cannon and Missile Launcher options.

 

It seems like they straddle the middle ground between shooty, smashy and durable.  If that's the case, how would you lot equip them?  I plan to magnetize, but I'd like to get the most ideal armaments tacked on first. 

 

As for me, I tend to lean towards assault (surprise, surprise) so how would they best be equipped for that role?  Just a mix of claws, fists and guns?


Edited by Firepower, 11 January 2018 - 07:23 AM.

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#2
Freman Bloodglaive

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My equipment is very simple. Fist, storm bolter. One model has a heavy flamer. The Sergeant has a grenade launcher.

 

Fists are the cheapest weapon that provide high strength, good AP, and multiple wounds. If chainfists had been reduced to 14 points as they were for Chaos then I'd recommend them, but they weren't and an extra point of AP is not worth an extra 10 points (I regard a flat 2 damage vs D3 as a wash).

 

Lightning claws don't provide any benefit with terminators. The kind of enemy you send them after, with their improved durability, generally have multiple wounds and high toughness, which means chipping away wounds 1 at a time is inefficient. Paired lightning claws give you more attacks, but you lose the ability to shoot, and most games (even though I despise bolters) having 4 shots at 12 inches will always net you more wounds than a extra attack in melee.

 

It's a pity that you can't give Cataphractii combi-weapons and thunder hammers, but my Cataphractii Captains can, and do. Combi-plasma plus thunder hammer is pretty much my default armament in 8th edition.

 

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#3
Kinstryfe

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I've had some good luck with them, deep striking, shooting, and eventually charging. I tend to use mostly power fists, with a few claws as needed to shave points off for the first ones I expect to die. They're not as shooty as a normal termies squad with assault cannon, and not as smashy as regular assault termies, but their survivability us usually pretty good and they make a decent "flexible" squad.
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#4
Captain Idaho

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Treat them as assault units that can contribute to shooting as needed. Teleport them in and have them a blocky thorn in the side of the opponent.

I go power fists and prefer high value/multi wound targets. This is because I only have 5 in the unit and -1 to hit limits the effectiveness of just 1 or 2 such weapons

I built my squad previous edition so missed out on lightning claws but I can see their value in reducing costs and killing Space Marines and the like.

If I was to take a larger squad (which I would had I not committed to other stuff in my army damn it) then I'd add 3 more Lightning claw Terminators to the 5 power fists the squad is rocking.

(Actually I have 2 Chainfists back when they were cool and not about 8 points too expensive each)

#5
Firepower

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Yeah, claws are just so cool it feels odd not to take any :teehee:

But with just 5 in the squad it sounds like Fists are the way to go right now. Is the Heavy Flamer a good investment? It is getting annoying to have Deep Strike units armed with an 8" range weapon, but...y'know...it's fire.

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#6
Daigo Cannon

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They are great, even when they were not able to charge during the first DS they still can shooot. The combi-bolters help to get rid of the unit that will normally screen the one you want to charge. PF is the best option, you want to hunt vehicles or monstrous units, you can deal with infantry with your combi-bolters and they demolish characters.

 

DS with a captain and a lieutenant and they become brutal.

I have a conflict with the captain in cataprhactii, even when he is great he cannot wield teeth of terra and most of the relics, iron halo is redundant only granting him the ability to deny psychic powers, compared to TDA captain it lacks the wrist-mounted grenade launcher.

 

I normally field:

5 Cata with PW

Captain in TDA with combi melta, PW and Iron Halo

Lieutenant Jump Pack, PS and Primarch wrath

3 Inceptors HB

 

It has worked for me as a push unit on the enemy flank.



#7
Firepower

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I'm likely to run them along side a Terminator Assault squad for extra smashing and durability and Terminator Chaplain...because I actually have those models. :teehee:

Perhaps Vanguards with Claw spam as well/instead of Termies. You can only deep strike so many things after all.

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#8
Captain Idaho

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Take the Cataphractii Captain - you won't be disappointed! 3+ invulnerable save is delicious.

My advice is give him a Relic Blade and enjoy his killing potential.

#9
Firepower

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Had I a 6th Cataphractii to work on I may, but alas, 5 per box. But the Termie Chaplain has been waiting patiently for a painting ;)

I could always slap a Jump Pack on one of my magnetized Sword Brothers to play a Deep Striking Marshal or Castellan for buffing, but you run out of reserve slots quick, so it's always a tough choice.

As for Marshals as a whole, I was amazed at the hell one lone fella with a Bike and a relic blade was able to bring into melee. He crushed a Termie squad over the span of a few turns.

Edited by Firepower, 05 January 2018 - 08:07 PM.

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#10
Captain Idaho

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He's worth a conversion just to benefit from his combat potential. Relic blades + super 3+ invulnerable makes him equal to most most opponents in close combat.

#11
Firepower

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Emperor's Champion Sebazdian of the Jerulas Crusade accepts that challenge. msn-wink.gif

 

But yeah, he does look beastly.  Just got the Cataphractii in the mail today, too.  Although I gotta finish this damn commission I'm way past due on first.  ermm.gif

 

Anyway, Heavy Flamer, yay or nay?  I have issue with them not being able to shoot on deployment, but after that it's a nasty gun...if they can catch anything with that low Movement stat...hm.


Edited by Firepower, 06 January 2018 - 06:03 AM.

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#12
WarriorFish

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Good points in here, I agree that the slowness of the unit and their 4++ lends them to being your "trouble consultants". Similar to my CSM Termies taking a lightning claw is good for reducing costs if you don't have PWs for a bit of anti-infantry (or bullet catchers...) but taking dual claws is just all round bad return sadly sad.png I'd probably keep them cheap but focus on power fists, let their fists do most of the talking as they find the thing I need dead and kill it, clearing out chaff or speculating wounds with their bolters on the way. I don't think the flamer is worth the cost with the range and their slow speed, you'd probably barely get to use it against their primary target never mind future ones (if you can reach them). Maybe it should be considered more as a counter-charge tool?

 

I have used my Cataphractii Captain quite a bit, I run him as the plastic comes. I used to take the Iron Hands relic combi-melta but he basically still has it with the 8th rules and the chainfist has brutally hacked through plenty of mean units. His role is the same as I'd use a squad - deep strike in where the fighting is thickest and go straight for what my opponent would like the least tongue.png


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#13
Captain Idaho

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Yes alongside the squad opponents have to deal with both the squad and a character who is just as hard to kill, making them a difficult thorn in the opponents deployment zone.

Unless you roll as many ones as me!

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I don't bother with the Heavy Flamer. You need to teleport the unit most times so they won't get the benefit. Use another Twin bolter for 4 shots instead.

I do use the Grenade launcher though. D6 shots at -1 AP helps them on the drop, though I always roll low for mine!

#14
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Imo claw and combi bolter is really cool.

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#15
Jacques Corbin

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Claws are nice, especially with Helbrecht nearby for his +1S bubble. Wounding MEQS on a 3+ with a reroll is obscene. Also, with a 4++ and 2 wounds per model, that is a lot of shooting to get them from between one of your characters and enemy guns. Yes on the Heavy Flamer, because it's fun on Overwatch, either auto-hitting 1d6 times at S5 AP-1 of forcing your opponent to charge from outside it's range.

#16
Shovellovin

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He's worth a conversion just to benefit from his combat potential. Relic blades + super 3+ invulnerable makes him equal to most most opponents in close combat.

How do you give the captain a 3+ invulnerable save? Sounds like he'd be a beast.



#17
Firepower

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Ultramarine relic of suspiciously witchy capabilities.

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#18
Captain Idaho

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Cataphractii Captains get a 3+ invulnerable save anyway. ;)

#19
Firepower

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That too :teehee:

At any rate, he's in the mail. Hopefully replacing the chainfist with a sword arm will be a simple affair...

Edited by Firepower, 10 January 2018 - 08:37 PM.

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#20
Cap'm Heckus

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I wouldn’t say “simple”. I’ve seen some really nice chainfist/Sword swaps but the little tassel-bits are annoying to remove and green putty back in.

I’m torn on the HF question too. 20 Bolter shots on the drop is nice but charge deterrent is nice as well. If they’re riding in a land raider then flamer for sure.

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#21
Firepower

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Funnily enough, I was so focused on Deep Striking them that I completely forgot you can even stick them in a transport.  5 of t hose and 5 Assault Termies with big papa Helbrecht in an LRC would be devastating...and a huuuuuge point sink. laugh.png

 

Looking at how I would go about magnetizing the arms right now.  It doesn't look great.  I had hoped I could attack the shoulders to the body and save myself a small fortune and a lot of time on finding those bitz, but that doesn't seem very plausible...ugh.  Well, magnetize paint a pair of arms for each, and get around to making options some day down the road I suppose tongue.png


Edited by Firepower, 10 January 2018 - 11:00 PM.

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#22
Cap'm Heckus

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Would not that take up 21 slots? 2x5 terms taking 2 slots each.

Edited by Cap'm Heckus, 11 January 2018 - 03:07 PM.

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#23
crazyterran

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Clearly he meant Spartan, right? :P

I was thinking of getting the limited Legion Praetor in Cata armour that FW made with the Combi gun and thunder hammer...

#24
Firepower

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Would not that take up 21 slots? 2x5 terms taking 2 slots each.


Math make thinky brane hurts. No math!

:teehee:
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#25
Cap'm Heckus

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I must say, this thread has made me want to pull out my cataphractii 😉. Haven’t fielded them yet this addition. Just picked up another Squad with lightning claws on the cheap from my FLGS used bin. They are missing their skirt thingies but that’s easily remedied. I haven’t done an old-fashioned termy drop in ages.
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