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TS Versus NuMarines

- - - - - Thousand Sons Ultramarines Imperial Fists Magnus Ahriman

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#1
techsoldaten

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Hello Dusties!

 

After the NuMarines Codex was released, I saw the power imbalance and started experimenting with non-traditional Chaos lists as a way to bridge the gap. I'm currently exploring what you can do with Thousand Sons and could use some advice.

 

One of the ones I've been running is a Daemon Primarch list featuring Mortarion and Magnus, which has enjoyed moderate success. At the same time, not everyone likes playing against 2 Lords of War and games can get repetitive. So I decided to put together armies for the Primarch's respective legions.

 

I posted a written battle report in the NuMarines thread in the main CSM forum. In this game, I took Magnus, Ahriman, 6 Sorcerers on Disks, a couple Terminator Sorcerers and a bunch of Tzaangor. My opponent was playing Imperial Fists with Intercessors, Infiltrators, Dreadnoughts and Repulsors, he gave up after the second turn.

 

While I am under no illusions about how this list would perform against other factions, there were 3 things that really stood out.

 

- Magnus had buffs for a -1 to hit and a 3+ invul save. He shrugged off a lot of wounds and that meant more against a NuMarine army. They have weapons with a lot of shots, when they don't wound, they waste offensive potential at a higher rate than, say, Dark Eldar or Tau, who have similar firepower spread out over more units.

 

- The Sorcerers were Characters. I was careful about placement and my opponent couldn't target them very efficiently. This also caused him to waste shots, his Repulsors were firing 40 shots to kill a single Sorcerer. That's egregious.

 

- My opponent deployed to counter Magnus and it backfired spectacularly. He massed his Dreadnoughts and Infiltrators in the path of Magnus, who (along with the Sorcerers) laid down a ton of mortal wounds with Smite / Infernal Gateway / Doombolt. Magnus was hitting at S 18 in cc, which let me confidently divide attacks across multiple foes.

 

What I took away from this game is a better appreciation for the vulnerabilities of NuMarines. When I say vulnerabilities, another way to think about it is "what tactics put an opponent at the least disadvantage fighting this overpowered army."

 

First off, they fight best at range, guns are their best offense. In general, high mobility opponents who can close the gap quickly are better off than those trying to fight from range.

 

Second, they are vulnerable to psychic spam. Psykers are not the most points-efficient HQ option in a PEQ army, there won't be a lot of denial in top NuMarines lists. This gives armies like TS an avenue to go after low model count units with smite and reduce their effectiveness early in the game (if not destroy them - I killed 2 5x Intercessor sqauds first turn with smite.)

 

Third, they are vulnerable to character spam. Their shooting effectiveness drops when they can only target the closest unit, they are wasting shots every time they go after single models. Through careful placement, I was able to ensure they were just shooting one unit at a time.

 

Fourth, they have big, clumsy bases limit their movement. I was able to pin a Contemptor in place to prevent it from falling back, this kept Magnus in a fight instead of getting shot up.

 

Wondering what other people's experiences have been with Thousand Sons versus NuMarines. Is there anything specifically that stands out to you? Can you give me examples?


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#2
Heliomanes

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Very happy that things worked out for you. I also like the idea of pooling some experiences here and try to think of some solution.

Numarines have a lot of stuff that will target things out of line of sight. This means that small objective camper units just give away free kill points/secondaries. So maybe we should stop filling out our batallions with small cultist or brimstone units, especially when playing ITC and similar formats.

The sheer weight of fire they can get from units like their deep striking inceptors will just straight up remove a tzaangor blob. So keep them in deep strike reserves if you use them, because they might only be good for that trick.

Raven guard successors can get a ton of army wide buffs when targeting characters. Which really makes them a hard counter against our sorcerers, daemon princes and other things we hold dear. Maybe going with less expensive characters but more of them, like you did in the OP is a good response?



#3
GreaterChickenofTzeentch

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Hello Dusties!

 

After the NuMarines Codex was released, I saw the power imbalance and started experimenting with non-traditional Chaos lists as a way to bridge the gap. I'm currently exploring what you can do with Thousand Sons and could use some advice.

 

One of the ones I've been running is a Daemon Primarch list featuring Mortarion and Magnus, which has enjoyed moderate success. At the same time, not everyone likes playing against 2 Lords of War and games can get repetitive. So I decided to put together armies for the Primarch's respective legions.

 

I posted a written battle report in the NuMarines thread in the main CSM forum. In this game, I took Magnus, Ahriman, 6 Sorcerers on Disks, a couple Terminator Sorcerers and a bunch of Tzaangor. My opponent was playing Imperial Fists with Intercessors, Infiltrators, Dreadnoughts and Repulsors, he gave up after the second turn.

 

While I am under no illusions about how this list would perform against other factions, there were 3 things that really stood out.

 

- Magnus had buffs for a -1 to hit and a 3+ invul save. He shrugged off a lot of wounds and that meant more against a NuMarine army. They have weapons with a lot of shots, when they don't wound, they waste offensive potential at a higher rate than, say, Dark Eldar or Tau, who have similar firepower spread out over more units.

 

- The Sorcerers were Characters. I was careful about placement and my opponent couldn't target them very efficiently. This also caused him to waste shots, his Repulsors were firing 40 shots to kill a single Sorcerer. That's egregious.

 

- My opponent deployed to counter Magnus and it backfired spectacularly. He massed his Dreadnoughts and Infiltrators in the path of Magnus, who (along with the Sorcerers) laid down a ton of mortal wounds with Smite / Infernal Gateway / Doombolt. Magnus was hitting at S 18 in cc, which let me confidently divide attacks across multiple foes.

 

What I took away from this game is a better appreciation for the vulnerabilities of NuMarines. When I say vulnerabilities, another way to think about it is "what tactics put an opponent at the least disadvantage fighting this overpowered army."

 

First off, they fight best at range, guns are their best offense. In general, high mobility opponents who can close the gap quickly are better off than those trying to fight from range.

 

Second, they are vulnerable to psychic spam. Psykers are not the most points-efficient HQ option in a PEQ army, there won't be a lot of denial in top NuMarines lists. This gives armies like TS an avenue to go after low model count units with smite and reduce their effectiveness early in the game (if not destroy them - I killed 2 5x Intercessor sqauds first turn with smite.)

 

Third, they are vulnerable to character spam. Their shooting effectiveness drops when they can only target the closest unit, they are wasting shots every time they go after single models. Through careful placement, I was able to ensure they were just shooting one unit at a time.

 

Fourth, they have big, clumsy bases limit their movement. I was able to pin a Contemptor in place to prevent it from falling back, this kept Magnus in a fight instead of getting shot up.

 

Wondering what other people's experiences have been with Thousand Sons versus NuMarines. Is there anything specifically that stands out to you? Can you give me examples?

 

Have you faced IF or RG with spammed Stalker bolters yet? I keep hearing that they wreck characters and large monsters. What about the dreaded Eliminator/Invictor/Thunderfire combo?

Also, how did you get 6 Sorcerers on Disks? 3 from the Index and 3 Exalteds from the Codex?


Edited by GreaterChickenofTzeentch, 03 December 2019 - 11:34 PM.


#4
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- The Sorcerers were Characters. I was careful about placement and my opponent couldn't target them very efficiently. This also caused him to waste shots, his Repulsors were firing 40 shots to kill a single Sorcerer. That's egregious.

 

Third, they are vulnerable to character spam. Their shooting effectiveness drops when they can only target the closest unit, they are wasting shots every time they go after single models. Through careful placement, I was able to ensure they were just shooting one unit at a time.

 

 

Curious as to how you did this - closest model targeting rules can be ignored when the closest model is also a character. If you have 5 sorcerers sat behind one closer sorcerer, your opponent can target any they like, unless there is a closer non-character unit.


Edited by Xenith, 06 December 2019 - 02:23 PM.


#5
Archaeinox

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Hello Dusties!

 

 

 

Wondering what other people's experiences have been with Thousand Sons versus NuMarines. 

 

My experiences have been catastrophic (for TS) against the most basic of primaris lists.

 

I have found that despite my vast experience in the game, I fight uphill battles in 40k with this army unless its an inexperienced player who knows nothing about TS and in that case it always turns into a teaching game anyway.


Edited by Archaeinox, 06 December 2019 - 04:44 PM.

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#6
Ahzek451

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Not been good as far as I see. Last couple matchups I was a spectator. Two seasoned players with decently competative lists, sons vs. Iron hands. The intercessors just tear apart rubrics. They have the range and the movement to fire first, step back, and keep out of range with stalkers. The damage 2 ap3 turns rubrics I to relying on 5++ while any return fire is a 5+, 5++, 5+++ due to the new master apothecary boosting the fnp. Not to mention the brutal firepower coming from Mortis dreads. I watched an astraeus rip apart a boosted magnus with all the usual defensive spells. Granted this was all iron hands...but damn.

Edited by Ahzek451, 06 December 2019 - 05:18 PM.


#7
The_son_of_Dorn

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Just as planned brother.

They may be "nu"er. But they ain't better.

My alternate Heresy http://www.bolterandchainsword.com/topic/326705-another-alternate-heresy-with-no-fallen-primarchs/

 

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#8
Prot

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Not been good as far as I see. Last couple matchups I was a spectator. Two seasoned players with decently competative lists, sons vs. Iron hands. The intercessors just tear apart rubrics. They have the range and the movement to fire first, step back, and keep out of range with stalkers. The damage 2 ap3 turns rubrics I to relying on 5++ while any return fire is a 5+, 5++, 5+++ due to the new master apothecary boosting the fnp. Not to mention the brutal firepower coming from Mortis dreads. I watched an astraeus rip apart a boosted magnus with all the usual defensive spells. Granted this was all iron hands...but damn.

 

I keep trying to tell people this, but often I end up labeled as 'negative'. It's just a reality here. Imperial Fists will absolutely shred Rubrics, and characters. I've seen it first hand.

 

What you have to do is find people willing to turn it down a bit, and let you play your... mostly thematic lists while they wield a juggernaut in the same arena. Iron Hands are overall just extremely difficult to get around. They are almost too easy to play. They play a castle so well, and have fantastic offensive output whether it be through Flyers, Leviathans, or what not. 

 

I didn't start this thread in the Thousand Sons forum because I felt a ton of the topic is covered in the main Chaos forum (as the original OP has participated in.) So my findings follow a very similar path whether it be Chaos I'm using, or TS. Mortal wounds are big. I like using the Soulburners on dreads, and I've thought of going back to my Soul Burner Petards on Decimators. (Very point heavy though since the nerf.)

 

I still think the Scorpius Whirlwind (which is of course not a whirlwind anymore!) is golden for hitting Primaris.


Edited by Prot, 06 December 2019 - 05:41 PM.

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#9
BoomWolf

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I'd like to add a new conclusion after giving a test drive to the CA prices
20 points spawn with the fated mutation stratagem is outright bonkers.
They cost so little that you don't feel much when they get shot at, and they wreck stuff far above thier paygrade if they hit cc.
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#10
Prot

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You know I never figured out why people weren't using them before. Out of all the stuff that is expensive in the Thousand Sons codex... I mean really we're talking about a 5 point drop on 3-5 models. This isn't getting you a landraider. I've always used them and the unique strat has always been the payoff for doing so. 

 

That said combined with what your list might comprise of, there could be other discounts giving you motivation to grab another squad. I've really only had them fail in the worst of match ups then as you say, they're cheap enough you won't miss them.


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#11
techsoldaten

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Have you faced IF or RG with spammed Stalker bolters yet? I keep hearing that they wreck characters and large monsters. What about the dreaded Eliminator/Invictor/Thunderfire combo?

Also, how did you get 6 Sorcerers on Disks? 3 from the Index and 3 Exalteds from the Codex?

 

 

No, this was my first time playing full Thousand Sons in 8th edition. It will probably be a while before I come back to them.

 

Yes, 3 Exalted and 3 from the Index.

 

 

 

- The Sorcerers were Characters. I was careful about placement and my opponent couldn't target them very efficiently. This also caused him to waste shots, his Repulsors were firing 40 shots to kill a single Sorcerer. That's egregious.

 

Third, they are vulnerable to character spam. Their shooting effectiveness drops when they can only target the closest unit, they are wasting shots every time they go after single models. Through careful placement, I was able to ensure they were just shooting one unit at a time.

 

 

Curious as to how you did this - closest model targeting rules can be ignored when the closest model is also a character. If you have 5 sorcerers sat behind one closer sorcerer, your opponent can target any they like, unless there is a closer non-character unit.

 

 

Shhh! Don't tell him that.

 

I was very careful about placement of the Sorcerers and the Tzaangor relative to his units on the board. The bulk of his force - the Dreads - were in the middle of the table, but none of them had clear LoS to every Sorcerer.

 

While I'm sure he could have split his fire up more effectively, his goal was to eliminate the source of Magnus's buffs. IIRC, he shot at 4 Sorcerers first turn, killed 2, and whiffed on 2.

 

But you're right. He had the option to split fire at multiple Characters. He did not choose to do that.



#12
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Will be facing a mixed Raven Guard/White Scars list (all Firstborn) next week. Will give what input I can about facing mass Bikes and Sniper Scouts under the new rules.



#13
GreaterChickenofTzeentch

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Will be facing a mixed Raven Guard/White Scars list (all Firstborn) next week. Will give what input I can about facing mass Bikes and Sniper Scouts under the new rules.

EDIT: Also, from what I've seen (both on this thread and in others, as well as my experience against Primaris Deathwatch), Primaris that AREN'T spamming Stalkers can struggle against Rubrics, but IF and IH can put in some serious work against them. 

 

The logical conclusion would be to lean more on Tzaangors against those armies, but Redemptor/Repulsor/Invictor backup makes that dicey given their capability against hordes.


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#14
Heliomanes

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What does your lists look like these days, GreaterChicken?

Also a note, since they were mentioned in this thread. Index sorcerers are gone from competitive play now that they were moved to "legends", so the days of the glorious 6 man sorcerer disc cavalry have already ended.



#15
GreaterChickenofTzeentch

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What does your lists look like these days, GreaterChicken?

Also a note, since they were mentioned in this thread. Index sorcerers are gone from competitive play now that they were moved to "legends", so the days of the glorious 6 man sorcerer disc cavalry have already ended.

I usually run 30 Tzaangors, 20 Rubrics (both in single blocks of that size), then 10 more Tzaangors as a throwaway filler unit, 10 Scarab Occult, 1 Defiler, 1 Forgefiend, a Mutalith, Two Daemon Princes (one w/Wings, one without), Ahriman on foot, and a Terminator Sorcerer.

 

Probably going to change that up a bit post CA 2019. Looking at an infantry wave of mostly dust bunnies with 30 Tzaangors to charge into multi-damage guns.

 

A common rule I have for all of my lists lately is that EVERYTHING must have an Invuln. I leave nothing without at least some save. Make them work for every kill.

 

EDIT: Looks like my next list will have 9 units, 81 models. It's a sign. :)


Edited by GreaterChickenofTzeentch, 11 December 2019 - 12:57 AM.

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#16
techsoldaten

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Will be facing a mixed Raven Guard/White Scars list (all Firstborn) next week. Will give what input I can about facing mass Bikes and Sniper Scouts under the new rules.

EDIT: Also, from what I've seen (both on this thread and in others, as well as my experience against Primaris Deathwatch), Primaris that AREN'T spamming Stalkers can struggle against Rubrics, but IF and IH can put in some serious work against them. 

 

The logical conclusion would be to lean more on Tzaangors against those armies, but Redemptor/Repulsor/Invictor backup makes that dicey given their capability against hordes.

 

Still new to TS, but I'd question whether Tzaangor are good as offense versus NuMarines.

 

Your standard Bolt Rifle shoots 30 inches, with tactical doctrine they have AP-2. In general, Tzaangor mobs can't close that distance with no save, a 10-man Intercessor squad standing still has the firepower to kill 30 before they are in charge range.

 

In this way, NuMarines are chaff-proof. That's before you consider things like 5+ Overwatch, deep strike denial, 24" psychic hood DTW, Repulsors / Redeemers, etc.

 

I was thinking Screamers are the better alternative. They can provide a nice screen for Sorcerers on disks, and the 2W are going to be tough to chew through on a unit with Fly. Plus they can be summoned, which gives you something to do with footslogging Sorcerers. 



#17
Ahzek451

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I rlly dont understand the point increase on tzaangors, but its here for now. And I will say, when it comes to marines, at least with iron hands they have less to fear as they have a preference for the stalker bolt rifle. Which does no extra damage to the blue goats and lesser rate of fire. Just something to consider.

#18
Prot

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Will be facing a mixed Raven Guard/White Scars list (all Firstborn) next week. Will give what input I can about facing mass Bikes and Sniper Scouts under the new rules.

EDIT: Also, from what I've seen (both on this thread and in others, as well as my experience against Primaris Deathwatch), Primaris that AREN'T spamming Stalkers can struggle against Rubrics, but IF and IH can put in some serious work against them. 

 

The logical conclusion would be to lean more on Tzaangors against those armies, but Redemptor/Repulsor/Invictor backup makes that dicey given their capability against hordes.

 

 

Absolutely. Unless playing IF/Crimson Fists you should hopefully avoid that, but to be honest I always had a squad in my Ultramarines because starting with Tactical Doctrine on T2, I never count as moving. 2D is just very solid with the Chaplain Rites.

 

 

I rlly dont understand the point increase on tzaangors, but its here for now. And I will say, when it comes to marines, at least with iron hands they have less to fear as they have a preference for the stalker bolt rifle. Which does no extra damage to the blue goats and lesser rate of fire. Just something to consider.

 

I think it's the order of operations. It's really starting to look like GW released NuMarines after this was written. One thing I'm getting from the recent releases and rules is they want to target cheap, spammy armies and Tzaangors kind of fit that mould.

 

I think those days are nearing an end. Plaguebearers did it best, and they seem to have fallen off the planet with NuMarines, and TFC's in general.

 

Tzaangors do have the deepstrike advantage, but I've been less, and less impressed by them over time. To be honest cheaper cultists filling the gaps between larger Rubric squads seems like a better option to me.


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#19
GreaterChickenofTzeentch

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Will be facing a mixed Raven Guard/White Scars list (all Firstborn) next week. Will give what input I can about facing mass Bikes and Sniper Scouts under the new rules.

EDIT: Also, from what I've seen (both on this thread and in others, as well as my experience against Primaris Deathwatch), Primaris that AREN'T spamming Stalkers can struggle against Rubrics, but IF and IH can put in some serious work against them. 

 

The logical conclusion would be to lean more on Tzaangors against those armies, but Redemptor/Repulsor/Invictor backup makes that dicey given their capability against hordes.

 

Still new to TS, but I'd question whether Tzaangor are good as offense versus NuMarines.

 

Your standard Bolt Rifle shoots 30 inches, with tactical doctrine they have AP-2. In general, Tzaangor mobs can't close that distance with no save, a 10-man Intercessor squad standing still has the firepower to kill 30 before they are in charge range.

 

In this way, NuMarines are chaff-proof. That's before you consider things like 5+ Overwatch, deep strike denial, 24" psychic hood DTW, Repulsors / Redeemers, etc.

 

I was thinking Screamers are the better alternative. They can provide a nice screen for Sorcerers on disks, and the 2W are going to be tough to chew through on a unit with Fly. Plus they can be summoned, which gives you something to do with footslogging Sorcerers. 

 

I was thinking specifically about throwing Tzaangors at Stalkers via the Dark Matter Crystal (after serving as a charge screen against Invictors and such) or Webway infiltration once an opening presents itself. Also, Tzaangors have a 5++, so you can Weaver of Fates them to 4++, plus Glamour of Tzeentch if you want, and they can fight twice for 2CP when they reach combat, plus they have AP-1 CC weapons and can reroll hits against characters. Finally, any casualties they do suffer from Stalker bolters are wasting one damage per shot because the goats have only 1 wound.

 

With Warp Time and the use of Gaze of Fate to reroll Advance or Charge (and +1 from the Brayhorn), they can be in pointblank range fairly quickly and demand attention even if the Crystal is not used.

 

Against the rest of the army, Rubrics and smite spam are more the order of the day.

 

Against  Smite, Warpflamers, and Inferno Bolters, plus Warp Time to get into position, DS denial screens aren't going to last long.

 

You can also use the goats to clear the screen because you can arrange for them to be hitting on 2's (rerolling), wounding on 3's, and fighting twice with 2 attacks apiece at -1AP. Grand total of 3CP spent, plus some character support needed and forward-deployed Infiltrators will get mulched. They can even clear an Invictor if they're at -1 to be hit (applies in combat too) and 4++.

 

Caution: don't keep the buffs on the goats all the time. They are not the main offense, just the initial shock. Once they are delivered, move the buffs elsewhere.

 

As for 24" Psychic Hood denials, that's easy to play around when even our buffing powers have +6 in range and you can conga-line back to the psyker.


Edited by GreaterChickenofTzeentch, 11 December 2019 - 06:21 PM.


#20
GreaterChickenofTzeentch

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Will be facing a mixed Raven Guard/White Scars list (all Firstborn) next week. Will give what input I can about facing mass Bikes and Sniper Scouts under the new rules.

EDIT: Also, from what I've seen (both on this thread and in others, as well as my experience against Primaris Deathwatch), Primaris that AREN'T spamming Stalkers can struggle against Rubrics, but IF and IH can put in some serious work against them. 

 

The logical conclusion would be to lean more on Tzaangors against those armies, but Redemptor/Repulsor/Invictor backup makes that dicey given their capability against hordes.

 

 

Absolutely. Unless playing IF/Crimson Fists you should hopefully avoid that, but to be honest I always had a squad in my Ultramarines because starting with Tactical Doctrine on T2, I never count as moving. 2D is just very solid with the Chaplain Rites.

 

 

I rlly dont understand the point increase on tzaangors, but its here for now. And I will say, when it comes to marines, at least with iron hands they have less to fear as they have a preference for the stalker bolt rifle. Which does no extra damage to the blue goats and lesser rate of fire. Just something to consider.

 

I think it's the order of operations. It's really starting to look like GW released NuMarines after this was written. One thing I'm getting from the recent releases and rules is they want to target cheap, spammy armies and Tzaangors kind of fit that mould.

 

I think those days are nearing an end. Plaguebearers did it best, and they seem to have fallen off the planet with NuMarines, and TFC's in general.

 

Tzaangors do have the deepstrike advantage, but I've been less, and less impressed by them over time. To be honest cheaper cultists filling the gaps between larger Rubric squads seems like a better option to me.

 

Tzaangors still have a place because of the Invuln save and their ability to tie up enemy units for a bit, with decent odds of surviving Overwatch. They also tend to REALLY surprise Knight players because of their ability to reroll hits on characters.



#21
GreaterChickenofTzeentch

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Sorry, folks. Got terribly sick the night before the WS/Raven Guard game and it didn't end up happening. I'll let you know the next time I get a chance to face the new loyalists.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Thousand Sons, Ultramarines, Imperial Fists, Magnus, Ahriman

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