Friday, June 28, 2013

Misfits of 40K: Episode 5

Ok, so I didn’t have a hidden easter egg in the last episode for a clue to this episode, boo hoo.  So I’ll give it to you now, F***ed O**… anyone… no?  Well, this is especially for you Necron players, even though you probably have no clue as to what I am talking about.

This episode is on...Flayed Ones.  Still nothing huh?  Ok, go to the Necron codex and turn to page 37, then 93.  There you go...what?  Yes they have been there the whole time.  No I did not just put it there while you weren’t looking.  It’s not so bad is it?

The Flayed One has had a long existence on the short bus of the 40K universe.  In fact, I’m not sure they were ever popular or good, but after having a look at them I’m not entirely sure why they suck.

This model speaks volumes towards their unpopularity

With a WS, S, and T of 4, 3 attacks, and a 4+ save with Reanimation Protocol they really don’t seem to be all that awful.  They have Infiltrate which also lets them outflank, the ability to deep strike, and are relatively cheap at 13 pts a model.

Now before I get into the meat of the episode, where I convince you that Flayed Ones are awesome, I’m going to point out a couple flaws and reasons they aren't taken.  They are I2, meaning almost everything goes before them in combat, and while the Reanimation Protocol is great, they don’t reanimate until the end of the phase which makes combat res a problem against a good assault unit.  They also can’t get a dedicated transport and the changes to outflank and assaulting from reserves has hurt them.  Finally, they don’t really have a place in the good army builds like “Wraithwing” and “Cron-Air” spam.  They are too slow, can’t start in a transport, and can’t assault when coming in from reserves.  All in all, not a great pairing with the fast moving fliers, and the terrain ignoring Wraiths.

So lets take a couple of other units with similar points costs and do a head to head comparison.  This is a “cost analysis” I like to do to see if a unit can hold its own vs a similar point cost unit in an optimal situation.  The situation I have is if 10 Flayed ones charges a unit of similar points and model size.  This gives me a good idea whether or not they are good even in the best case scenario.  First up, Chaos Space Marines!

A unit of 10 CSM runs 140 pts, bare bones, a unit of 10 Flayed Ones is 130.  The difference is simply the Aspiring champ.  With just basic 10 man units, the CSM will kill 2 Flayed Ones on overwatch and combat, then the remaining 8 Flayed Ones will kill 2.5 CSM back.  So it’s a narrow win, but still a win.  Then there is a chance that the fallen Flayed Ones will get back up.

Why so serious?

With their new fangled codex and rules, Dire Avengers have gotten better.  2 shots and seudo-rending makes their overwatch deadlier.  Again, Flayed Ones charging into a unit of DA will lose 3 to overwatch and assault, and the remaining 7 Flayed Ones will kill 4.5 DA.  After which, 1 Flayed One should get back up.

So, after that quick analysis I know that in a toe to toe fight, in a vacuum, 10 vs 10, Flayed Ones are pretty good. 

I mentioned before that these guys are kinda slow and have a hard time keeping up with the rest of the army, which is their biggest problem.  Well, I’d suck at this if I didn't think of a couple ways to compensate.
The good new is that GW must have thought that these guys were gonna have a hard time keeping up too, so they gave them Deep Strike and Infiltrate.  The bad news is you can’t just throw them down and have them wreck face, they are not durable enough for that.  You need to plan and combine forces so that things meet up at the same time.  I won’t go into great depth on target saturation, but the idea is to time it so that your units spring into striking position the same time your units arrive from Deep strike.  This leaves your opponent with lots of units he has to kill, but he won’t be able to kill them all.  With your remaining units you hammer into him hopefully crippling him enough to win the day.

Flayed Ones work extremely well with Wraiths, because the Wraiths are very durable and very fast and they have whip coils.  This means that most of the enemy models will be attacking at I1.  Combined with the Wraith’s rending and the sheer volume of attacks, a combined charge should be able to kill just about anything.

Another thought is to take a Monolith.

Ok, ok, ok, hold on there.  I know the Monolith isn’t the glorious un-killable nightmare that it was, but it’s still an AV 14 vehicle which is nothing to laugh at.

You silly bitch!  Monoliths suck!

So maybe a later episode will deal with the Monolith, none-the-less this is a way at getting your Flayed Ones in place and it’s possibly more reliable than Deep Striking.

As a last resort, you can use them as a distraction.  They are not that many points in the grand scheme of things and they could cause some havoc if they deep strike in the backfield, which would take some heat off of the units that actually count, like Wraiths.

That’s it for this episode, stay tuned for more craptacular 40Kness.

PS: I quickly gave up on that easter egg thing for next episode.  It's hard enough trying to be funny AND inspiring with the odds stacked against me.

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