Several of my friends and I have been playing these small games using a modified Force Organization chart (requiring only 1 Troops choice as opposed to 2) in order to acclimate ourselves to 6th edition. My own experience with 40K is tumultuous (I've only rarely ever had a field-able army), but I've been entrenched in the setting since the game's 3rd edition. For my money (quite literally), 6th has been a very tight, comprehensive system that captures all the great elements that past versions have waxed and waned on. Heroes are incredibly heroic and powerful without being armies unto themselves. Core units of troops are essential for every army to secure and hold objectives. Vehicles are now neither wafer thin nor mandatory mobile cover. It all fits together rather well.
When the call went out to start playing again, I had just sold my 5th edition Ork army. I thought long and hard about picking the Greenskins up again as they are easily my favorite part of any Games Workshop intellectual property, but I didn't want to have to struggle with list building like I did in 5th edition and I certainly wasn't prepared or motivated to build and paint a massive amount of foot-slogging boyz from scratch. No, for this I wanted something more compact and elite. As it happens, I'd been pumping out a few characters for Fantasy Flight's Deathwatch rpg and I had really come to love and appreciate the White Scars chapter of Space Marines. There's a lot I could say about the Scars from a cultural/historical perspective, but that might get a little wordy and stray off topic (cultural appropriation in Space Marine chapters has got to be covered by someone somewhere). Suffice it to say that I love Genghis Khan as a historical figure and the thought of a massive army of unrestrained Space Marines on bikes appealed to me.
So, I got my hands on a Dark Angels Ravenwing Battleforce (because it is essentially a bike army in a box) and set to work. I was lucky enough to score some old White Scars bits off eBay and a few friends helped me scrounge up the bitz I wanted to start adding a Mongol horde flavor to the army. So far, I haven't gone too crazy, but it's a start. After playing a few games, I've settled on a list that incorporates as many bikes as I can reasonably fit in 500 points.
HQ: Space Marine Captain
- Space Marine bike
- Lightning claw
- Lightning claw
TROOPS: Scout Squad
- Sniper rifles
TROOPS: Space Marine Bike Squad
- 2x additional bikers
- 2x Meltaguns
- Attack bike
FAST ATTACK: Land Speeder Stor
I have actually gone ahead and thrown in the mandatory HQ and 2 Troops choices required by the standard Force Organization Chart despite the house rules requiring just 1 Troops choice for this size game. I used Sniper Scouts in one of my test games and was really impressed with them (and the new plastic models). They make a nice long range addition to the bike squad that has to get up close and personal to get the most out of their devastating melta weapons. The Land Speeder Storm isn't really necessary as a transport for the scouts, but it gets me a nice mounted heavy bolter and is very characterful for an army that is highly mobile in the fluff.
Now, I'm not sure what my opponent will be fielding tonight, but last I talked with him he had a list that had a Captain, a 5-man Grey Knight Strike Squad, and a Dreadknight. This is a tiny, tiny army and I will have an unusual numerical advantage, but the Grey Knights are tough and the Dreadknight is scary - I mean look at it! If this is the army I end up facing, then my plan will be to secure any objectives with the scouts and pepper his Strike Squad with sniper rifle fire with support from the Land Speeder Storm. The bikers, meanwhile, will swing wide to slag the Dreadknight with melta fire before charging into whatever remains of the Strike Squad and/or Captain.
Tonight, I'll be taking pics and notes for a full battle report which should be up on Saturday. Since the White Scars and Grey Knights are both Imperial forces, this is just a "training exercise" from a fluff standpoint, but I hope I can lock down a victory.
|For the Khan and the Emperor!|