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Vanguard Veterans

Vangaurd Veterans Space Marines Melee Units

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44 replies to this topic

#1
ImperialTuba

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I'm trying to find units to include in my Raven Guard army that can satisfy my lack of dedicated melee. Currently, any unit that I have who has decent close combat performance is already serving some other role.  

 

Right now I'm considering a squad of Vanguard Veterans outfitted with jump packs, storm shields, thunder hammers (3), and power mauls (2). Looks like they'd cost about 150 points with this set up. Are they worth it? Is there a better unit for the job?

 

The plan would probably be to deep-strike them along with my Librarian in Terminator Armor, and use Might of Heroes on them, buffing the hammers from Strength 8 to 10 (unless I'm misunderstanding how that works?), and giving everyone an extra attack. I've also got a unit of Suppressors who can cancel out my opponents Overwatch if they successfully kill a model in the unit being charged. Depending on what I decide to throw them at, it seems like it could be a deadly combo. 

 

But I've only got a handful games under my belt, so I know I could easily be overlooking a number of things. Thoughts?  



#2
Stickeh

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Might of heroes only works on one model, and it’s much better used on a captain for that reason. Sure you could use it on a vanguard veteran sergeant but you get less mileage out of it.

Vanguard veterans are a good unit though; take a couple of storm shield models with just chainswords to take shots, and then a smattering of thunder hammers for punch. Jump packs are better used to leap frog terrain and then go for a charge rather than deep strike, as 9" charge range is very unreliable.
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#3
sfPanzer

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I really wouldn't recommend Thunderhammers on models with just two attacks at WS3+. They are too expensive to get only one hit per model on average. I'd rather take Powerswords or Poweraxes on the regular guys and a Thunderhammer on the Sergeant.


Keep in mind that they are still only T4 W1 models so some anti-infantry will easily take care of them regardless of the Stormshields or not. Deep striking them and hoping they survive a full turn of enemy shooting or hoping for the 9" charge is bound to fail more often than it will work out in your favour. You need to use them very carefully and in combination with other similar threats.


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Disclaimer:

If my posts appear rude to you, I apologize. It's not meant to be rude in any way, it's just the way folks are in my country. It's really more about being direct than being rude. I know how it's perceived in the english speaking community and I already try to tone it down but I barely notice when it's too much since it's normal for me.


So yeah, I'm really not rude it's basically just cultural differences that act against me here. Again, I apologize.

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#4
MARK0SIAN

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I’ve tried a similar set up a few times and when it works it can easily earn back its points in a single turn. However it fails more often than it works (at least for me) and what SfPanzer says about them dying quickly is true. Even a Stratagem like auspex scan can end them before they’ve done anything.

They’re also generally a one hit wonder when they do work, they’ll kill what you point them at but will die the next turn. The thunder hammer set up is great against big stuff but it doesn’t really make them a good close combat unit as they’ll struggle against infantry due to a low volume of attacks. If you ran them against a real melee unit they’d get murdered.

In short, it can work but my experience has led me to stop running it as a unit as it only really worked well 1/3 of the time.

The problem is that the codex is not exactly brimming with other melee stuff to suggest to fill that gap for you :(
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#5
Lemondish

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A guy took 3rd place recently with a Vanguard Veteran heavy Ultra list that featured two big units made of a Sarge with Hammer and chainsword, two vets with Hammer and chainsword, two with double chainsword, and five with chainsword and storm shield.

I think the key for it is the Victrix Guard detachment which won't apply to you, but I think even without that this would be a build with a decent amount of horde blending attacks with hidden Thunder Hammers.

Edited by Lemondish, 09 July 2019 - 10:52 PM.


#6
ImperialTuba

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Might of heroes only works on one model, and it’s much better used on a captain for that reason. Sure you could use it on a vanguard veteran sergeant but you get less mileage out of it.

Whoops, my bad. Still new to using Psykers. After checking the wording of the ability, I'm feeling quite the buzzkill.  



#7
Lemondish

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Might of heroes only works on one model, and it’s much better used on a captain for that reason. Sure you could use it on a vanguard veteran sergeant but you get less mileage out of it.

Whoops, my bad. Still new to using Psykers. After checking the wording of the ability, I'm feeling quite the buzzkill.

Welcome to the party, pal :D
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#8
ImperialTuba

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The problem is that the codex is not exactly brimming with other melee stuff to suggest to fill that gap for you sad.png

 

I guess I'll just continue getting shredded by Tyranids and Genestealers until they decide to change some rules and make some more models, lol. wallbash.gif



#9
Lemondish

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The problem is that the codex is not exactly brimming with other melee stuff to suggest to fill that gap for you sad.png


I guess I'll just continue getting shredded by Tyranids and Genestealers until they decide to change some rules and make some more models, lol. wallbash.gif

Veteran Intercessors are surprisingly decent, which feels wrong lol

#10
War Angel

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The trick to killing genestealers is to just put as many shots as you can into them. Thunderhammers arnt going to make them any easier to kill. Actually it will make them harder to kill because you’ll be at -1 to hit.

Always have a screening unit up front. Before they get within charging distance you’ll need to push your screen in close, that way he can’t move past them. Put as many shots into them as you can. If you can get them below 10 models they go from 4 attacks to 3. That means 10 genestealers get 40 attacks, and 9 get 27 attacks.

If your screening with intercessors, you might be better off charging him to get him below 10 models. 5 intercessors can actually do 11 attacks hitting on 3’s and wounding on 4’s in close combat, which is one more attack than if they shoot. The -1 ap of their shots doesn’t matter because of lightning reflexes (there might be a hive trait that gives them a bonus though.)

That’s one more attack then if you wait for overwatch and you only hit on 6’s there. It was worth it for me but I was also trying to keep him from getting any closer, and it worked.

Ps, if your against Primaris, sternguard basicly do the same thing but with less wounds.
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#11
CCE1981

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Might of Heroes is amazing on a Leviathan Dreadnought with 2x Storm Cannon Arrays,ForgeWorld I know. Kicking him to toughness 9, with a standard 2+ save, and 4++ invul he face tanks a ton. He also has a 2+ to hit so even when he is knocked down a peg 2 you’re going to hit a lot with those 20 shots. When your opponent tries to get into melee to tie him up he’ll have to face the guns plus 2x heavy flamers. All that in a package of just over 300 pts.
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#12
SyNidus

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I used a 10 man squad with 4 TH/SS and 6 Dual Lightning claws to pretty decent effect. But the problem has always been delivery. If the opponent gets a chance, those guys will be shot to bits.


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- Sy


#13
Captain Idaho

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I'd recommend 2 such Vanguard units and likely other aspects of your list an opponent would want to shoot, for the reasons mentioned above. 1 unit can be shut down fairly quickly but 2 could just be enough to cause a splash. 3 and you have a difficult proposition to deal with.

Being Raven Guard, it's thematic to have such an army and also the -1 to hit will help you survive 1st turn destruction. Vanguard have huge reach anyway - 12" move and average charge of 7" is a credible reach range of 19".

And for that reason I start my Vanguard on the table.
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#14
Brother Adelard

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I usually run mine with a Jump Chaplain for the hit re-rolls. On occasions that the VV have made the charge, but not the Chaplain, I strategically leave one of the ablative wound models (a cheap one with Chainsword and pistol) slightly behind the rest, so he stays within the Chaplain's re-roll aura, and so does the unit.

I imagine it's the chaplain screaming from afar, because his jetpack has stalled, and the guy in the middle has to pass on his ranting.
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#15
ImperialTuba

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The trick to killing genestealers is to just put as many shots as you can into them. Thunderhammers arnt going to make them any easier to kill. Actually it will make them harder to kill because you’ll be at -1 to hit.

Always have a screening unit up front. Before they get within charging distance you’ll need to push your screen in close, that way he can’t move past them. Put as many shots into them as you can. If you can get them below 10 models they go from 4 attacks to 3. That means 10 genestealers get 40 attacks, and 9 get 27 attacks.

If your screening with intercessors, you might be better off charging him to get him below 10 models. 5 intercessors can actually do 11 attacks hitting on 3’s and wounding on 4’s in close combat, which is one more attack than if they shoot. The -1 ap of their shots doesn’t matter because of lightning reflexes (there might be a hive trait that gives them a bonus though.)

That’s one more attack then if you wait for overwatch and you only hit on 6’s there. It was worth it for me but I was also trying to keep him from getting any closer, and it worked.

Ps, if your against Primaris, sternguard basicly do the same thing but with less wounds.

The problem with this particular Genestealer player is that there's nothing to screen against since he likes to keep nearly half his units (especially the Genestealers) in reserve. By the time they show up on the table they're well within charging distance. The best I was able to do in my last game was spend the command points for Auspex scan when they showed up, but even that doesn't thin them out too much. But you're right about the Vanguard setup I was initially suggesting, that wouldn't do much against the large number of models, more suited to bashing a tank or something. Which is something I'm still interested in being able to do, lol. But I now realize that I'm trying to solve two different problems I face on the tabletop with this single unit, which I now see just isn't feasible.


Edited by ImperialTuba, 10 July 2019 - 06:13 PM.


#16
Claws and Effect

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I run mine with twin lightning claws. Extra attack for having 2 of them and they reroll all failed wounds.

I've been considering adding a few chainsword/shield guys to eat high AP stuff. They'll die first, but all I lose is the storm shield since the chainsword is free. Never forget that YOU decide which models die.

If you're going to deep strike them, consider running Shrike. He lets jump pack models reroll failed charges.
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#17
War Angel

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For your genestealer issue, push your screen forwards so he can’t consolidate into your second wave. Infiltrators will literally make it so he can’t charge you as he can’t declare a charge outside of 12 inches. Have Aggressors positioned so they won’t need to move to unload on him in your turn. And then use your own assault squad and vanguard to finish him off. Sounds like your probably going to be facing multiple genestealers, but with so much of his forces in deepstrike, you’ll be able to take over most of the board. Just remember to not leave any openings behind you.

I’ve got a few ideas on the close combat part, but I’ve also never truly finished anything that was designed for close combat outside of terminators with power fists
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#18
Captain Idaho

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I'll give advice that spans the whole Codex since we don't know how you build your armies regarding Classic and Primaris Marines.

Against Genestealer Cults I'd recommend plenty of Troops, believe it or not. Tactical Marines and Intercessors will kill even Genestealers fairly easily thanks to t-shirt saves. Tactical Marines are cheaper and will last just as long as Intercessors against Genestealers, but the Intercessors will do better in assault against the cultist equivalents.

Please don't make the mistake thinking Intercessors can take on Genestealers in assault unless there's just one or two left!

Aggressors and Centurions will wipe out so many enemy in a Genestealer Cult army it won't be funny. However, they need a screen.

Which is where your troops will come in.
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#19
War Angel

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Genestealers have 3 attacks if under 10, so it takes 4 of them just to have enough attacks to kill a 5 man intercessor squad with 100% success rate. They are going to attack you anyway, might as well get your attacks in first, they’ll die just as easy to your fist as they do to your bullets, and the extra casualties could be enough to keep your guys alive. I’m not saying you can go toe to toe with a full swarm; just that the cost could be worth the benefit.
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#20
SkimaskMohawk

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Genestealers have 3 attacks if under 10, so it takes 4 of them just to have enough attacks to kill a 5 man intercessor squad with 100% success rate.


What?

12 genestealer attacks do an average of 2.5 unsaved wounds. That means one dead intercessor. You need 48 genestealer attacks to generate enough unsaved wounds to have a "100% success rate" mathematically.

#21
Captain Idaho

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Seriously, don't make the mistake 10 Genestealers won't eat alive Intercessors.

You're better off shooting them and then Overwatch. 11 attacks hitting on 3s then wounding on 4s is going to be roughly 3 wounds, then the Genestealers have a 5+ invulnerable save. Sure you won't do much with 10 Overwatch shots (discounting the aux. Grenade launcher which you get for free) but then you won't be committed to combat in your turn then killed in their turn with those small numbers of Genestealers.

Instead, you'll force their charge, hopefully nail a couple on the way in and if you survive you can leave combat in your own turn. Basically you'll only suffer from a single assault phase.

It's an option of course, but rather you'd be better off using your Intercessors to squash cultists.

I learnt the hard way never to charge Genestealers with anything less than total force bordering on overkill.

The reason is thus; if you engage with 3 or less Genestealers you're better off Overwatching. Why? Because you can nail them all and stand good odds of at least one. The subsequent charge is weakened.

If you charge those 3 Genestealers, you open up the possibility of bringing other units closer to your Intercessors/chargers in ready to be charged by something else. If you fluff your rolls then you open up your squad to losing more models with a 2nd assault phase. Lastly, you're doing exactly what your opponent wants you to do.

And if there's more than 3 Genestealers, there isn't a Troops choice in Codex Space Marines that should charge them. A full 10 Veteran Intercessors maybe, if there's more than 4 you're asking for trouble and remember the other reasons not to charge - you're approaching other units that want to charge you.

Oh yeah multi charges. If you charge elsewhere, charging with a squad of Intercessors means the opponent could spend 2 CP and go first with a unit you thought was going to strike first...

Edited by Captain Idaho, 10 July 2019 - 11:10 PM.


#22
SkimaskMohawk

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Here's the math.

5 intercessors rapidfire 3 genestealers and do 2.1 unsaved wounds. They then charge them and do another 2.4 unsaved wounds. Congratulations, you've won with no casualties. You can approach 4 knowing that on average, you can safely dispatch them.

Also don't shoot the grenade launcher. A rapid fire rifle has a 45% chance of doing a wound while the krak grenade has a 28% chance.

Edited by SkimaskMohawk, 10 July 2019 - 11:28 PM.


#23
Captain Idaho

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I think you missed what we were talking about. We were saying that, after shooting, there are Genestealers left.

And if, using your example, you shoot 2.1 Genestealers dead and leave 1 alive, you shouldn't assault it because it'll get killed in Overwatch. The moment you charge that 1 Genestealer you are moving CLOSER to an assault army for no real benefit.

Of course there might be a risk based reward avaialvle or whatever and that is an as and when situation, but on the whole no you shouldn't assault a Genestealer with Marines Troops choices.

#24
ImperialTuba

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I appreciate all the responses. I've been given a lot to consider. Obviously I didn't expect to discover a way to beat Genestealers at their own game, but hopefully with all the advice I can mitigate their threat. I'm aware that Space Marines just aren't a very competitive army in 8th edition, and on top of that I don't necessarily build my army to be competitive. I'm learning the hard way that it'll be an uphill battle, but I'm determined to enjoy the hobby.     



#25
SkimaskMohawk

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It doesn't get killed in overwatch though...5 shooting do an average of 0.51 unsaved wounds. You'll still kill it in melee, but that's not really my point.

I'd never advocate bad tactics like charging in to kill off a straggler while there's counter charge units lurking. But it's misleading to assert what units can and can't do without using facts. "4 genestealers kill 5 intercessors 100%" "more than 3 genestealers there isn't a troop that should charge them". Come on, get away from hyperbole.





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