Wednesday, March 16, 2011

More Nids! SinSynn Schools Purgatus - Purgatus Takes It Like A Man

Hmmm.... well looks like 'someone' finally got enough time to write your's truly a thorough email to 'debunk' my Dual Tyrant test list. I will be "lightly" snowmobiling this email, just to correct any specific factual errors, but will suspend a full response until I see Part 2 (and 3? who knows...). As it stands it's a bit early to be rebutting his argument because I don't think the argument has really been fully made yet. 

Without further ado:


By SinSynn


Let's take a look at Purgatus' Dual Tyranid list, and see if we can't identify WHAT'S WRONG, and fix it.

2x Hive Tyrants w/Old Adversary, Lashwhip and Bonesword, Heavy Venom Cannon

Each Hive Tyrant gets a single Tyrant Guard w/No Upgrades

2x 3 Hive Guard Please, give me a little credit. My list is 3x2, not 2x3. We can debate a lot of things, but leaving empty Elites slots in a Nids army is more than stupid. It's downright unethical.

2x Tervigons w/Catalyst, Adrenal Glands, Toxins Sacs, Cluster Spines

2x 10 Termagants

18 Gargoyles

2x Tyrannofexes w/Rupture Cannons, Dessicator Swarms, Cluster Spines

52 Models, with 6 Monsterous Creatures and the capability to Spawn more Troops.

Sounds good, right?

Ok, so let's see how a list like this executes on the Tabletop-

Gargoyles line up in front, as screens, providing cover for the Tyrants.....

Who in turn provide cover for the T-fexes, who provide cover for the Tervigons, etc. etc.....

That's good- that's Tyranid Theory 101 in action, right there.Yeppers.

The Swarm advances, and, IN THEORY, anything the Hive Guard and T-Fexes shoot out of Metal Boxes gets assaulted by the Tyrants....Hell, IN THEORY, the Tyrants can hurt a mech line badly if they hit home.... Actually I don't intend to rely as heavily on the Tyrants killing stuff as you seem to think. But go on.

But then what? Tell me. ;D

If this list manages to disembark a handful of Vehicles on turn one, and a handful more on turn two, then what?

A 6' x 4' board is a big place, and 2 Hive Tyrants can't be everywhere. Besides, they're busy marching towards the action on turns one and two....unless they're running. This kind of makes my case for HVC but I'm listening.

But, no, they want to be firing those ever-so-effective Venom Cannons, right? That's why they're in the list...But wait, they've got Boneswords and Whips, so..we wanna get into CC as quickly as possible, so.....

Ugh, Dual-Purpose Tyrants with VC's? In a Hybrid Shooty/Assaulty style 'Nid list?


Non-Twin Linked VC's are fail. And on a BS3 Unit? Double Fail. Period. Hmmm... let me just interject that saying something is "just fail" isn't really an argument. It's an attempt to get someone to stop talking by implying that their position is so obviously wrong that "anyone" can see it. Unfortunately (fortunately) I'm a pretty confident guy so it will take a bit more than that. BS 3 Blasts of any sort will score a "hit" on most vehicles about 50% of the time. That's a quantifiable reality. Now we can debate whether that is sufficiently high to merit their inclusion in a particular context or not, but the implication that any shooting with a BS Blast is essentially a "Hail Mary" at best is just demonstrably wrong. Moving on...

Pretty sure every Tyranid player who actually PLAYS Tyranids will back me on this one. This kind of argument will go nowhere with me. I'm not slamming you, because I don't think you're doing anything intentionally wrong, but appeals to popularity bias and trying to imply that I don't know what I'm talking about because I haven't played Nids as much is not an argument, it's just talking head flimflam.

Moving on..... Me too.

Ok, so we've got...let's say 6 disabled enemy vehicles (completely optimistic, but whatevs) on turn 2. Our Tyrants are marching towards the enemy lines, ready to, uh, do stuff, I guess.

And backing them up are......who, exactly?

Those 18 Gargoyles are gone by now. Wait, what?

Yeah, that's right. As soon as your opponent realizes they're providing Covor Saves, they'll receive focused fire from the 'useless guns' in an enemy force- Storm Bolters on Rhinos, Multi-Lasers and Hull-Mounted Heavy Flamers on Chimeras, etc. If he's close enough to be using Heavy Flamers on my Garg screen, and I can't do anything about it, then I have bigger problems than my loss of Garg screen. Furthermore if I'm ALLOWING him to use a 6" move plus 8" template weapon on me without my placing myself in that position very intentionally, then I have bigger problems than my army composition.

Most mech armies, but especially IG, have enough 'throwaway guns' to eliminate the cover that the Gargoyles provide. I question that.

NOTE- Heavy Flamers on Chimeras are a NIGHTMARE for 'Nids, and another reason this list won't cut it against a properly built Imperial Guard Army. Since you will definitely see them in a Tournament environment, this immediately becomes a huge problem. I'm aware of the threat of Heavy Flamers. A very good reason not to rely on Genestealers for killing vehicles as any kind of viable strategy, imho...

In all fairness, Razorspam is just as bad for this list. That's two of the most popular Tournament 'Net-Lists.' Razorspam is one of the lists I specifically built this to go up against. Not saying my list is uber, but it's interesting that we have such different estimations of the outcome of that matchup...

Oh, and then we've got Space Wolves with Njal... Yeah, he's a bastard, I'll give you that.

You know what? Moving on, again...

Ok, so the Gargoyles were turned into a fine pink mist, and now the Tyrants are exposed. Whichever Tyrant presents more of a threat will receive Focused Fire, and will die. I'm not going to 'Mathammer' this, it should be obvious. You act as though there isn't also a ten man (or two) squad of Gaunts in front of the Tyrants...

"Ah-Ha!" I hear you cry, "I've got the Tervigons, and they're manufacturing Termagants by the dozen! Plus, I deployed the original 10 x 2 with the Tyrants, and they're hitting the lines with Furious Charge!" The plan is not just a bum-rush of bugs, no. I can see why you would think that would be a problem.

*sigh* Yeah, I know...sounds awesome, right?

In reality, it's not.

The easiest way to phrase it is this-TERMAGANTS ARE SQUISHY. Agreed.

Mega squishy.

Turbo squishy.

If YOU were an IG player, using a 'Chimelta Vets' list, and you saw two Tyrants plodding towards you, bubblewapped by a handful of 'gants, what would YOU DO?

Why, I think you'd roll up a couple of Chimeras, filled with Melta-equipped Vets, flame up and Multi-Laser the Bubblewrap, and proceed to put critical wounds on the Tyrants.

Probably wouldn't be a lot of 'gants left after the shooting phase.

"But they've got Feel No Pain from the Tervigon, and maybe the Gargoyles do, too. Combine cover and FNP saves, and I'm gonna hit that line and wreck it! So, nyah!"

Again, I'm not gonna Mathammer this. Simply put, Multi-Lasers are Strength 6 (and a Chimelta list has plenty of those for the Gargoyles), and falling ordnance is going to kill them (and the 'gants) outright as well. 'First Rank Fire! Second Rank Fire' from Infantry Blobs also makes FNP Bubblewrap disappear, as well. It would be a very fail Guard player that was using Multilasers on my Gaunts instead of my MCs, especially since I think I can do a pretty decent job of suppressing the rest of his long-range firepower.

I'll discuss why Onslaught is a better choice for this list in Part 2. I'll be looking forward to it. Have thought about Onslaught + Dakkarants myself, I'll be interested to see which direction you go.

Termagants are the ONLY troop choice with just a SINGLE ATTACK. Without upgrades and outside of the Tervigon's 'perks' range, they are virtually cannon fodder at 5 pts. each. They don't even have Scything Talons. They DO, however, carry short range, single shot Bolters.

Compared side by side with a unit like Hormagaunts, and their role becomes clear.

Ultimately, Termigants are better kept within range of a Tervigon, and used in a defensive cabability to protect it. If you DID deploy the 2x 10 'gants foward with the Tyrants, that would be a mistake, as you can never have enough Counter-Attacking, Poisonous, and occasionally (in desperate moments) Furious Charging 'gants around to protect such a high-priority target, in my experience.

Outflankers and Deep Strikers of all kinds will do their damndest to kill your Tervigons. One or two small broods of 'gants will not be enough to protect a determined effort to kill them, and attempting to 'turn around' the offensive part of your Swarm to rescue the Tervigon(s) will almost always result in a loss, since the momentum of the game is changed to the Tyranids detriment. I'll comment on this below.

In my early games with the Tyranids, I ended up sacrificing my Hive Guard many times, using them to block assasination attempts on my Tervigons.

I've learned to keep PLENTY of 'gants around. I learned the hard way. I don't disagree with this... but I don't agree with your overall premise.

As for the Tervigons- Due to the nature of this unit (Defensive MC for Objective Claims), they become a liability in a list built around Old Adversary Tyrants. There are simply not enough bodies in the list to protect them and the T-Fexes properly, and still hit the enemy lines with enough to win.

With WS3, and only 3 attacks at Strength 5 (not 6 like most MC's, so they don't wound T4 on 2 ups), they are not a unit we want in CC. ...why? You do realize that they are S6 on the charge the way I equip them, and get rerolls to hit when next to my Tyrant... they will kill their fair share of MEQ.

They'll be Spawning every turn, in an attempt to protect both themselves, and the T-Fexes with a 'Stay Away' 'gant screen.

Which leads to another problem.

You will not be able to protect 4 Monsterous Creatures (2 Tervigons and 2 T-Fexes) from anyone skirting the flanks of the Tyrants, or Outflankers/Deepstrikers, without keeping the original 2x 10 'gants in the back on screen duty, and this would mean the Tyrants marching (and...shooting instead of running?) foward with only the Gargoyle screen.

All in all, a lose/lose proposition, I think.

Lastly, I know that EVERYONE looks at the Tervigon on paper, and has beautiful visions of a Tabletop overrun by Boosted-Up Termagants, but I'll simply say that it never really works out that way. Lol. Don't worry I'm pretty realistic in this regard. Statistically you should get around 23 I think but it's a left bound graph with a long right tail so... just count on getting one spawn each and anything else as gravy.

And even if it does (and rarely it DOES HAPPEN), you'll soon find out that outside of the Tervigon's 'perk' range, the only way a Spawned Brood of 'gants survives in the future, when there is only war, is by being ignored.

And unless they're sitting on an objective, or in the way, they will be. They're not really all.

Gargoyles and Hormagaunt are ONE POINT MORE EACH, offer up a far better selection of special abilities, are both more dangerous in CC (especially the Hormagaunts, but Blinding Venom is awesome when you're rolling a ton of dice), and are both more useful in a list like this when taken in large Broods. Ok, but they aren't any less squishy than Termagants, which you above said are terribly, terribly squishy. Turbo squishy. Just pointing out that what's good for the goose is good for the gander...

In this list, Gargoyles are a quick screen, and lack the one-two punch a bunch of Hormagaunts would add....Along with a truly CC Tyrant, or even two. I'll be looking forward to seeing your thoughts.

Whoops, getting ahead of myself.

I've got to stop for now. I've got chores- lol- and the weather is getting nice here in the Bronx.

Time for a game of Dominoes with the boys on the stoop! Wow did you say Dominos and stoop? I thought you were in the Bronx not the deep south... lol. Anyways, thanks for writing this up. I know you're not done so I'm waiting to draw any "conclusions."

I do think that you misunderstand the way I would use this army though. I'm actually writing up an article for the HoP which goes into this in depth. I'll wait until I see your part II though.