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Deathwatch kill teams & lists

kill team tactics deathwatch

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#1
Fanatic Xenophobe

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Hello!

I'm curious to hear what people think about kill team setups and army lists.

I've found that my results when playing have been extremely varied. I have only played a handful games atm, a couple of 2v2s and some 1-1.5k games. I'll share some of what I've been doing and perhaps people can fill in with what I might be doing right/wrong.

Some of the different kill teams I've fooled around have been:

boltgun + power sword
shotgun + power sword
frag cannon

(chapter approved arrives)

combi-plasma + stormshield

combi-melta + stormshield

combi-plasma + power axe
boltgun + storm shield

I found I've mostly leaned towards dropping the frag cannons because they are so expensive, and because I don't find them particularly useful with the limited range (esp. if charged from +8"). If I get charged by something like 30 Tzaangors combined with getting smite'd, I lose too many casualties to really make vanguard + fall back + shoot frag to really matter. I'm having a lot of trouble dealing enough damage with my kill teams before they just get wiped out.

Mortal wounds is really a big problem, so I've ordered the DW Termie librarian so use as an HQ. Previously I've been using Watch Master + Artemis as HQs most of the time.

My next plan is to try to use two 10-size kill teams where every model has a storm bolter + chainsword. Jumping out of a Corvus with 10 dudes and shooting 40 attacks, followed by a charge for up to 32 attacks seems like a good idea to me. Alternatively I might do 6 boltgun+storm shield and 6 storm bolter+chainsword, for 2 squads in 2 corvuses.

The Corvus seems like a must-have, I tried to leave it out and used a land-raider crusader instead, but I found the land raider to be almost useless because it cannot fall back and shoot. I'm getting a second corvus now.

Thoughts?


 



#2
xenomortis

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Welcome aboard!

 

I have experienced the same as you. Sometimes absolutely smashing my opponent and other games being tabled by turn 2. That’s where Deathwatch are currently at and I don’t think it will change until our Codex drops.

I think you have done the right thing to experiment with load outs in your local meta. There is no tried and tested solution. Here are some of my thoughts:

 

I don’t sink too many points into boltgun veterans. I keep them with just the boltgun for 2 reasons.

Firstly SIA is good and does a job most of the time, Secondly these are the veterans that get removed when taking mortal wounds.

 

Always worth putting a storm shield into a squad of vets for 5 points to tank some wounds.

 

Frag cannons are expensive but worth it in my opinion. Even as a deterrent they tend to keep opponents away from you letting you utilise SIA.

 

A squad of 5 stalker pattern boltguns is a worthwhile investment at 120 points. They are good back fielders that can throw out a decent amount of fire power and harass units as they advance. If you have the points think about adding a missile launcher or 2. Ideally this squad works better static or if moving supported by a Captain or Watch Master for the rerolls.

 

My typical 5 man squad looks something like:

Sgt (combi plasma/melta + power weapon)

Boltgun + storm shield

Frag cannon

Boltgun

Boltgun

 

I have generally found that multiple small, specialised kill teams is more effective than larger teams that are a points sink and can get smited off the board. However your plan looks good and should hopefully dish out some hurt so give it a go and let us know how you get on!

 

Mortal wounds are a major problem. A librarian should help. I have recently invested in a Culexus assassin to ally with my Deathwatch to try and negate this.

 

Corvus’ are excellent, I try to include mine in every game. Also worth thinking about a razorback or 2 with twin lascannons or assault cannons.

 

The other unit I would recommend is a squad of Primaris Hellblasters. They are potent and can dish out some decent damage at range with their plasma incinerators.

 

Let us know how you get on biggrin.png


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#3
Inquisitor Red

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Like many people I've been finding mixed unit kill teams to be lack luster in 8th. I've had such a poor showing from it that I just play my Deathwatch Veterans as I would a basic tactical squad. I keep the Veterans cheap and basic with Boltguns and Chainswords to fill up the required 3 troop min battalion requirement and just throw the squads in rhinos or foot slog em. I use the rest of my points to fill in with the good stuff Deathwatch offers (Bike squads, jump packs, termies, dreads, etc). But Xeno Mortis is right, having a squad sit in the back with Stalker Bolters is nice, but instead of Vets with Stalkers look into the Primarus boys instead. They're cheaper pt wise than the Vets with Stalkers and they have double the amount of wounds. Yes you lose out on SIA, but I'll take the survive-ability over a minimal damage increase for a objective campers all day.



#4
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I have run a couple of games with 4 stalker-boltgun + missile launcher (sometimes + termie with CMS), but I've usually found the squad to be very ineffectual. It may be that I just need to be better at positioning them.

I am thinking I may want to add some Intercessors (5 x1-2) and possibly Hellblasters, because it does seem like the additional Wounds matters more than the firepower.

In general I find it to be vital to start with all expensive kill teams inside a vehicle, otherwise you'll lose too much to Deep Striking psykers and/or shooting squads, which is also in part why I don't particularly like the stalker squad.

Overall I feel like the Corvus is the only thing making DW playable at all, without it I don't feel like I've ever gotten anything done. I'm not really sure how these issues will be addressed even with a codex, because it's still very hard to get command points because the units are often so expensive (and have to be if they are to do anything).

Something that would be super useful would be a 2pt Stratagem that let's us move 3" back when charged is declared, or something along those lines.

Having played a lot of Deathwatch RPG before DW became a faction in 7th, something I am really missing is the flavor. I want more specialized weapons and models, so I'm hoping for a lot more utility once the codex comes out :)


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#5
xenomortis

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I'm just finding I have to supplement my Deathwatch at the minute to make them semi-competitive. I have a Forgeworld Leviathan Dreadnought which is a beast and even if not smashing everything he draws a lot of fire to allow my kill teams to move up. I use Tempestus Scions quite a bit, giving me some cheap deep striking ability with a good amount of melta / plasma. Already mentioned the hellblasters which are not 'true' Deathwatch in my opinion but certainly help (especially when using the Beacon Angelis). I sometimes run an ordo xenos inquisitor and as mentioned just got a Culexus assassin to try and counter smite spam.

 

I try to keep it fluffy with an elite feel to the army on the whole


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#6
Mobius0288

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There's a lot of factors when you build your kill teams, the most important being your tactics. Another factor is the other units supporting your kill teams. I've built a few lists: "in your face," mid game camping, objective based and a mix of each. Each kill teams I use in these lists are different.

 

However, there are a few common things I include:

- Some sort of camping kill team in the back (3 stalkers/2 missiles)

- Adding a termie (storm bolter/power sword) for a 2+ save

- Adding and additional 1-2 veterans (storm shield/bolter) to your core kill team weapon needs (2 frag cannons, 3 melta guns, etc.)

- Adding a single veteran (bolter/chainsword) to soak up wounds before I am forced to take it on my special weapon guys

- Don't put storm shields on special weapon models (you want to use those saves to protect the whole kill team as long as you can)

 

If my guys have transport, I can ditch a protection option to save points since they will be in a transport. And if you are going to use transports, see if you can't consolidate some kill team weapons. The stalker team being the example... instead of an all stalker team and all missile team, i've combined the two because I don't need a large presence in my deployment zone. I just want them to be a nuisance while I flank my opponents big targets. I've even added a heavy bolter recently to the squad for extra shots at that 36" range, and a storm shield. Again not super awesome, but enough to threaten foot-slogging infantry and support my anti-armor units.

 

My frontline kill team across most of my lists is:

- Sgt (power sword/bolter)

- 2x Vets (bolter/storm shield)

- 2x Vets (frag cannons)

- Termie (power sword/storm bolter)

- Vanguard Vet (power sword/bolt pistol)

 

This team either gets obliterated or wrecks multiple units... in both cases, the team has bought me enough time to capture objectives or maneuver a supporting unit into place. It grows based on points available (more termies and regular vets) and is usually teleported to the front lines via the Angelic Beacon (jump captain or HQ in drop pod).

 

If blobs are a problem in your meta, you ought to get your corvus to help shoot at them before your troops get dropped off... or potentially drop a watchmaster with your team and hover next to him the kill team. I don't think a 10 man kill team with storm bolters would be necessary. If your want to go the storm bolter route, I would personally consider (1) allying a 10 man-tactical space marine unit with two storm bolters or (2) ally in inquisition with acolytes, all carrying storm bolters. The acolytes can ride any transport so they would fill up the extra space and they're super cheap.

 

When you have 2-4 solid kill teams, definitely consider intercessors as they are your cheapest DW infantry units and are more durable then regular veterans.


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#7
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I just realized that Inquisition seems "interesting" in some regards. I can take an Inquisitor for 55 pts to get a "free" smite, and 3 single acolytes in a Vanguard Detachment, for +1 CP.

Do some people spam units of single Acolytes? Seems like that would be extremely strong when trying to hold objectives for example, since the shooting doesn't spill over (10 units of 1 model acolytes?). Not saying I want to cheese like that, I just realized it seemed possible :P


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#8
Mobius0288

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I just realized that Inquisition seems "interesting" in some regards. I can take an Inquisitor for 55 pts to get a "free" smite, and 3 single acolytes in a Vanguard Detachment, for +1 CP.

Do some people spam units of single Acolytes? Seems like that would be extremely strong when trying to hold objectives for example, since the shooting doesn't spill over (10 units of 1 model acolytes?). Not saying I want to cheese like that, I just realized it seemed possible tongue.png

 

It's not a cheese. It's perfectly viable. But using them to hold objectives.... it's a single model, and with split fire now a core mechanic, it's very easy for them to get wiped off the board. You would definitely have to keep them in a transport or not visible as to not lose first blood to your opponent. It is possible to use them as anti-deep strike as well, bubbling around your campy units.

 

I run a psycher inquisitor with plasma gun and power maul. Cheap weapons, and if the quarry rule lines up with my opponent's faction, I have some overcharge potential. My acolytes are in units of 4 or 5 depending on vehicle availability and I give them storm bolters and bolt pistols. It augments very well to DW. I get both extra models on the board and a cheaper psycher that can ride with my DW guys. Terrify is great as well, shutting down any kind of overwatch.

 

A good combo that can be run is adding in assissins with them as well, since it's an imperium detchment anyway. I'm still toying with the idea of running a librarian, inq psycher of some sort (Rex, greyfax, eisenhorn or ordo xenos as above) and a Culexus assassin. There's even potential for sisters of silence as well, and it doesn't seem to hurt my lists too much in terms of fire power.


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#9
Vel'Cona

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I for one love the idea of allied Inquisitors to DW (in addition to GK, SoB, etc.) because of the sense it makes from a background perspective and the blended aesthetic.  I'm very much looking forward to the Eisenhorn release as an excuse to get my favourite character on the table and a logical inclusion to a DW Strike Force :)


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#10
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Yeah, I'm also looking forwards to picking up Eisenhorn. Do we know if we will get special rules?



#11
Vel'Cona

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For DW or Eisenhorn?  huh.png


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#12
Fanatic Xenophobe

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For DW or Eisenhorn?  huh.png

Eisenhorn :)



#13
Mobius0288

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Yeah, I'm also looking forwards to picking up Eisenhorn. Do we know if we will get special rules?

 

His stuff leaked last week and he has some decent/fluffy abilities. I don't think we're supposed to post stats but highlight some cool things that differ from a regular psycher inquisitor.

 

- More expensive then greyfax

- Heavy/mastercrafted bolt pistol and really good melee wargear (for a human)

- Ordo Xenos!! (huge win for us since the only other named character is Lok from FW)

- 2 psychic powers!

- Has the standard leadership ability or you can use his special character ability... summons a daemonhost with pretty much +2 stats to everything and it's a character. AND it can be summoned within 6" Eisenhorn, more then 1" away from an enemy model. If you use his special ability, you lose the leadership ability for the rest of the game (which doesn't matter in a mostly DW force.

 

EDIT: Super excited for him btw... haha


Edited by Mobius0288, 22 February 2018 - 02:58 PM.

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#14
Fanatic Xenophobe

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That does sound like a perfect, and awesome, addition to my (our?) armies!



#15
Moostick

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I'll try Eisenhorn as well, but he will need a good bodyguard unit. He's way more fragile compared to Rex for frontline, and he's not as good of a support as Greyfax.

The daemonhost is his selling point, and I'll have to see what the best way to play it is.

#16
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Later today I'm going up vs a colleague who is playing Space Wolves, 1500 pts. This is what I'm going to run:

 
++ Battalion Detachment +3CP (Imperium - Deathwatch) [73 PL, 1496pts] ++
 
+ Flyer +
 
Corvus Blackstar [12 PL, 261pts]: Hurricane bolter, Infernum Halo-Launcher, Twin assault cannon
. 2x Stormstrike Missile Launchers: 2x Stormstrike missile launcher
 
+ Heavy Support +
 
Hellblaster Squad [8 PL, 165pts]: Plasma incinerator
. 4x Hellblaster
. Hellblaster Sergeant: Bolt pistol
 
+ HQ +
 
Librarian in Terminator Armor [9 PL, 172pts]: 4) Fury of the Ancients, 6) Null Zone, Combi-melta, Force axe, The Beacon Angelis
 
Watch Master [7 PL, 130pts]: 3. Tenacious Survivor, Warlord
 
+ Elites +
 
Venerable Dreadnought [8 PL, 197pts]: Twin lascannon
. Dreadnought combat weapon w/Heavy Flamer: Heavy flamer
 
+ Troops +
 
Deathwatch Kill Team [9 PL, 136pts]
. Deathwatch Veteran: Chainsword, Stalker Pattern Boltgun
. Deathwatch Veteran: Chainsword, Stalker Pattern Boltgun
. Deathwatch Veteran: Chainsword, Stalker Pattern Boltgun
. Deathwatch Veteran w/ Heavy Weapon: Missile launcher
. Watch Sergeant: Chainsword, Stalker Pattern Boltgun
 
Deathwatch Kill Team [9 PL, 189pts]
. Deathwatch Veteran: Boltgun, Storm shield
. Deathwatch Veteran: Boltgun, Storm shield
. Deathwatch Veteran w/ Heavy Weapon: Deathwatch Frag Cannon
. Deathwatch Veteran w/ Heavy Weapon: Deathwatch Frag Cannon
. Watch Sergeant: Combi-melta, Power axe
 
Deathwatch Kill Team [11 PL, 246pts]
. Black Shield: Combi-plasma, Thunder hammer
. Deathwatch Veteran: Boltgun, Storm shield
. Deathwatch Veteran: Boltgun, Storm shield
. Deathwatch Veteran w/ Heavy Weapon: Deathwatch Frag Cannon
. Deathwatch Veteran w/ Heavy Weapon: Deathwatch Frag Cannon
. Watch Sergeant: Combi-plasma, Thunder hammer
 
++ Total: [73 PL, 1496pts] ++
 
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#17
Mobius0288

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I'll try Eisenhorn as well, but he will need a good bodyguard unit. He's way more fragile compared to Rex for frontline, and he's not as good of a support as Greyfax.

The daemonhost is his selling point, and I'll have to see what the best way to play it is.

 

Ya it seems like he'll be good as long as he's in the thick of it. Maybe a good short range and/or brawler kill team... bolters/shotguns/shields and some power weapons perhaps. None can compare to Rex too well but he'll be protected as long as he isn't up front. He is only a human after all :)


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#18
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A little update from the game: Librarian termie worked out well. I gave him the relic and teleported my hellblasters to his position. It's really good to be able to effectively deep strike your hellblasters into rapid fire range. This combo seems like an auto-include in any list if you ask me.

The dreadnought got blown up immediately on turn 1, so still havn't gotten to try it out :(


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#19
Mobius0288

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A little update from the game: Librarian termie worked out well. I gave him the relic and teleported my hellblasters to his position. It's really good to be able to effectively deep strike your hellblasters into rapid fire range. This combo seems like an auto-include in any list if you ask me.

The dreadnought got blown up immediately on turn 1, so still havn't gotten to try it out sad.png

 

Agreed on the Hellblasters. I did try a Hellblaster and Inceptor combo with a jump pack Captain (so I could reroll the 1's). It was devastating. Blew a unit of Castellan robots and an Onager Dune Crawler in the same turn.

 

You could do the same with a watchmaster in a drop pod as well.

 

I've also tried building a big beefy 10-man kill team - 2 storm shields, 2 frags, 4 termies (2 aux melta fists) and a vanguard (Inceptor unit as well). It worked well and survived a couple of turns... long enough for my Intercessors to walk towards objectives. Opponents don't expect a 10 man kill team hiding in the back to teleport to their flank turn 1. I mean, he literally turned his entire army to that flank. Turn 2 and 3 allowed me to obliterate infantry with my blackstar and capture objective points.

 

The bottom line is it's a fantastic strategy to capitalize on.


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#20
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It's an interesting though to build a large kill team and teleport it in with the relic, while perhaps having a corvus with 2 smaller units (that you perhaps drop off at different objectives).







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