Sunday, September 4, 2011

Army List: Wall of Russ

On the flight home from a business trip I accidentally trapped my travel popcorn book in the overhead compartment. Not wanting to disturb the gentleman seated next to me, I decided to whip out my phone and type up a possible list that has been brewing in my head.

One of the problems that I've been having with my Guard is that they often seem fairly schizophrenic and fragile to me. AV 12 boxes carrying meltaguns is definitely a powerful strategy, but those meltaguns just never seemed to add enough to the army's overall strategy to be supremely worth it. Sure they're scoring, well armored and deadly, but they do nothing at range and get torn up when they get close.

Meanwhile my long range heavy hitters, the Vendettas, Manticores and Hydras depended on getting in first dibs on shooting so that they could take out enemy AT. Any return fire quickly shut them down either temporarily or permanently, so going second depended a lot on waiting in hard cover or starting off the board. And I HATE starting off the board. Plus in order to protect them I needed to devote additional melta squads which meant that they weren't getting in my opponent's face.

So here are the factors that are in my brain:

-resilience to first turn/long range firepower
-unified purpose for the army
-strong emphasis on utilizing the Vet squads in midfield

I'm an avid follower of The Back 40k and, despite Mr. Sandwyrm's recent success rate at NOVA I really like the way his army plays, midfield and aggressive with plenty of Russ backup.

So, with the ideas of midfield, unified purpose, and resilience to firepower in my brain, here's what I thought up at 1850:

Company Command Squad, 3 meltaguns, Astropath, Chimera
Veteran Squad, 3 meltaguns, Chimera
Veteran Squad, 3 meltaguns, Chimera
Veteran Squad, 3 meltaguns, Chimera
Veteran Squad, 3 flamers, Chimera
Veteran Squad, 3 plasmaguns, Chimera
Devil Dog, hull hvy flamer
Devil Dog, hull hvy flamer
Leman Russ Demolisher, hull hvy flamer
Leman Russ Demolisher, hull hvy flamer
Leman Russ Squadron, one Executioner and one Exterminator, both with hull hvy bolters

Yep, 4 Russes. Enough to blanket most of my line from enemy fire or at least afford them a healthy cover save, while at the same time enjoying their lovely AV 14 against ranged attacks. Long Fangs? Don't care. Vendettas? Have fun. Eldar? Hope you brought enough Bright Lances. Grey Knights? Yeah, have fun with that str 7 rending. Autocannons? Hah!

There are also no Vendettas in the list. Sure they put out a lot of firepower, but everything can see them and therefore shoot them down. Devil Dogs, on the other hand, can bookmark my Chimera line and offer them AV 12 on the sides while also grabbing cover and offering a serious threat to vehicles and infantry alike.

Tactics with the list depend on the enemy. Standard deployment is Russes up front, Chimeras behind them and Devil Dogs taking the sides. Russes are mostly there to help the army weather the first two turns of shooting. After that the Vets can be loosed on the enemy, melting enemy tanks and troops while the Russes continue to assist as needed while (hopefully) staying out of melta range.

Against drop lists deploy a small group including the CC to lure the drop troops into a trap when reserves start coming in turn 2.

Now, this isn't some perfect, win all list. It shores up one weakness of Guard (lack of resiliance) but opens up a few others. MCs are difficult to deal with at range with no Vendettas. Drop armies can cause merry hob by bringing meltas into close range right away. It also has little option in the early game beyond driving pell mell and a few 24" shots if I'm lucky.

But I think that might be worth it to not worry about the long range firepower that dominates the game again.

Let me know what you think, and thanks for reading!


Tallarn said...

I have been looking at doing the same recently, I have even gone to a 30 man blob 'power brick' with a commissar. The points I used for chimera are ending up in heavy support. My Russ are gradually growing in numbers like yours... the only thing with a squadron is that immobilized results will get you.

Don't forget to look at a hellhound, it dosen't draw alot of fire, but it can get a melta shot across the board in one turn!

Spaguatyrine said...

I play against Sandwyrm all the time and give him suggestions I use when I play my guard. If you want 4 russes, I would run the demolishers together as a squadron, keep the manticores, then add the executioner. The reason you have the double d's is to deny your opponent the middle while you take the middle with your chimera's. But Sandy doesn't like to listen to me. LOL


Melad Andre said...

I love the Leman Russ paint scheme. Its fantastic what regiment is it?

The Scatter Dice Rolls

Max said...

@ Tallarn: I definitely didn't forget the Hellhound- he's been a star in lists so far! But, this list seems to deal with infantry just fine, so a Devil Dog seemed to be the better choice.

@ Spaquatyrine: so, 2 Ds, Exec/Ext and Manticore in HS? Possible, I just don't know what I'd cut out. I guess the Exterminator would have to go, but that would ruin my AV 14 wall.

I do like the idea of the Demolishers together, though, as where one might miss two will surely kill, and that would also spread out my ranged anti-light armor a bit.

@ Melad Andre: Thanks! It's no regiment in particular, just something of my own creation based on Euchre/other card games :) You can read some background of it up in my fluff section. The scheme is a tan primer that I found at Home Depot with Devlan Mud used to pick out details.