So... this is something that's been on my mind since Necrons came out, and I just thought I would share. I'm not sure if this has occurred to anyone else or not. *Shrug* You get to listen to me blather about it anyways!
So. The Necron Destroyer. Clearly a shooting unit. Not a close combat unit. By most accounts it seems a touch overpriced as well. And it has a rather odd rule... Preferred Enemy (Everything!).
So... what's going on here? I'm sure you've all heard the rumors that Preferred Enemy will apply to shooting attacks. I'm not a follower of the 6th edition rumor mill, but my understanding is that this was a rumor that was passed along, AND that it makes sense in light of the Destroyer rules.
Now, tell me... which army has a unit, which can provide Preferred Enemy to EVERY friendly unit in a 6" bubble...?
Oh, I know! Nids! Suddenly, Old Adversary seems a lot more dangerous when your Hive Guard, Zoanthropes, Heavy Venom Cannons... are all twin linked! Now we don't "know" that Preferred Enemy would actually provide the equivalent of Twin Linked. Hell, we don't even know that "Twin Linked" will do the same thing as it now does. We don't really know anything.
But logic would suggest that the Destroyers have Preferred Enemy for a reason, and that not even GW was daft enough to think that people were going to be charging their Destroyers into Close Combat.
So Preferred Enemy is almost certain to provide SOME benefit to shooting attacks. Currently, the Old Adversary bubble is rather lackluster. It's nice, don't get me wrong, but not earth shattering. The truth is that a 6" bubble is not able to affect a lot when you are talking about close combat. But it's relatively straightforward to keep a portion of a lot of shooting units within 6" of a Hive Tyrant as the swarm marches across the board.
I mean... Devourer Gaunts are already one of the most effective anti-infantry shooting units in the game. Can you imagine them with rerolls?!
I also sincerely hope that Preferred Enemy also helps units hit vehicles in close combat, because it would be nice not to have to rely on double scything talons to hit anything.
Lots of stuff is sure to change, but this seems like something "obviously" good coming down the pipe.
On another note, I took a very "shooting centric" Nids list for a spin the other night against Chaos Space Marines. It was humming along like clockwork until the fourth turn, I was heading towards a solid tabling of my opponent, when he got a multi-charge off with a Khorne Berserker unit against two units of Termagants a Prime and a Carnifex. The Prime and the Carnifex were already engaged in close combat (they killed a Daemon Prince that same round), and of course the Berserkers blew up the entire Tyranids side with fearless saves (Each Gant unit, the Prime and the Carnifex EACH took 15 wounds).
Now, the charge was a bit hinky. I'm not 100% certain that he "should" have been able to do it (it was a very wide gap). But I let it go ahead and about a quarter of my army disintegrated, and I was simply not able to recover after that. So, a loss. But a nice reminder of the fact that you really have to manage the tempo of close combats and avoid unfriendly multi-charges at ALL costs as a Nids player. The damage you can sustain is simply ridiculous.
I have camera phone photos of the battle, but I had an epic email fail and I haven't gotten them in a place where I can do a batrep yet. Hopefully I'll have some time this weekend.
Ugh. The slow crawl back to competency. I really need to get some more games in, though once school starts up again in January I'm envisioning another three month hiatus.