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Thread: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

  1. #21

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    I will point out that ST are cheaper- only two points, sure, but those points add up when you're building an entire army- and performs better against most Orks and IG.
    50% of armies on average are Marines, so you'll want (hell, need) Rending to kill them quickly. Anyway, against most things with an armour save, Rending is better than +1A. It adds lethality to the brood which can't be found readily in the list (with the exception of Genestealers), or in many army lists (most other armies only have Rending on pure assault units, having it on a shooty unit is nasty).
    Combat resolution shouldn't be much of a problem; the Tyrant only has four wounds, and you should be inflicting ~3 to anything you attack. If you lose combat, you're already dead and No Retreat is irrelevant. (Admittedly, in rare situations you can roll like crap and fail to kill enough guys, but I wouldn't bet on long shots like that.) Similarly, Acid Maw will only net you one, or perhaps two, wound rerolls most games. On Genestealers I might find it useful (except for the expense and prohibition on taking other, better, biomorphs), but rerolling one wound in six just isn't that good a deal to me for that many points.
    Yeah, but you're forgetting about Fearless enemy units, which don't care how many wounds you inflict. Being able to pile extra wounds onto them (due to 'No Retreat') is sweet.
    Acid Maw is only marginal if you just assault basic infantry. You don't use the Tyrant to eat basic infantry (initially at least), she's been brought onto the tabel instead of another Warrior brood, so she can eat enemy heroes and Monstrous Creatures. A Warrior brood with the right upgrades can eat enemy infantry no problems, it's those Greater Daemons, Princes, Wraithlords etc that you need to deal with. She's got the speed and the killyness to do it.

    No character in the SM army is better than I5; many of them are I4. Only Tzeench and certain Eldar units get that high outside of SM, really. I think the 15+ points you're spending to go slightly faster every once in a while could be much better spent on buying another half of a Tyranid Warrior or three gaunts. (I can certainly see the use of the WS upgrades, as I sometimes buy them as well; I just don't think that the full package is something to take every time. My solution for most special characters is letting them play catch with one of my Devilfexes; there aren't many targets that can soak six successful wounds per turn without feeling it.)
    Not Tzeentch, Slannesh . I don't understand what point you're making; higher Initative is always better than low Initiative, ask any Ork player. Getting bio-plasma at the same time as Banshees/KoS is powerful, as neither is going to ignore S6 easily. At I5 they'll usually get all their attacks in, even if Furiously Charged, and S5 rending = death to most things. Maybe I could use the points elsewhere, but a few more Gaunts doesn't really matter, compared to the power of higher Initiative in combat. Warriors are your second line, they're designed to enter pointless Gaunt combats and rip into the enemy. Also, they have to be able to take charges from enemy assault units.

    See, this is where I'm confused. If all you use your troops for is meatshields, why are you paying points to give them better guns? You're paying one more point for +1S (which is a good deal, in general) and trading reroll to hit for reroll to wound; but since Gaunts aren't really a unit that's designed to kill things, that seems like wasted resources. I can take 20% more Gaunts than you can for the same number of points and they're pretty much the same effectiveness. Unless you can point out something I'm missing, because I am well aware of what the stats on the two guns are. I'm asking what's the point of taking the upgrade?
    Well, all that massed bolt pistol has to kill something (cos it re-rolls to wound). I find, like with Orks, that once you go over 20 models in a squad it just becomes too unwieldy and slow. Anyway, another 4 models isn't a big difference, I don't see the need to totally gimp the unit of any effectiveness (yay, twin-linked laspistol!), just to get 4 more Gaunts.

    Because I can take a Strangler and a Cannon and shoot both every turn. Against vehicles (which are what my 'Fexes generally are shooting from turns 1-4) this gives me a major boost in firepower, as the Strangler will sometimes get hits in (and even penetrating ones). I'm guessing you use your 'Fex in an anti-infantry role, but I find that Tyranids have so little anti-tank it's important to maximize it whenever possible, hence VC on a Carnifex. Generally two or three of them, in fact.
    No no, you missed the point. I'm saying, it's 5 points more to just buy a twin-linked strangler, compared to buying a single venom cannon (no 2nd gun, not twin-linked).
    The Venom cannon is totally worthless in 5th edition. Here are a few reasons why;

    1. At best (after buying ES for the 'Fex), you get 1 hit per turn on average.
    2. The only vehicles you can reliably threaten are open-topped; aside from Orks and a handful of other light vehicles (Sentinels, Piranha etc), other vehicles laugh at your damage potential. Most Imperial/Chaos vehicles pack extra armour (even after the price increase), so on transports (the only thing usually moving inside 36" of your Carnifex) it's a bit pointless.
    3. It eats up points you could use on defensive upgrade and/or twin-linking the strangler.
    Really? I'm pretty sure that you'll find an average one hit that auto-penetrates will kill more vehicles than an average of 2.5 hits that need sixes to even glance. Against non-Ork armor, Fleshborers (and most other Tyranid guns that aren't mounted on a 'Fex) simply fail to work at all unless you're shooting their rear arc. And if your opponent is letting your squads of troops waltz into the rear arc of their tanks... well, let's just say against an opponent that dull you should probably be able to eke out a victory no matter what.
    Doesn't auto-penetrate, you're assuming the target is open-topped. Most vehicles are not. 'Only glancing' is pathetic.
    I was making a joke about the venom cannon's effectiveness; in-game I would never shoot any vehicle with anti-infantry weapons.

    "More accurate"? Carnifex + Enhanced Senses gives a 50% hit rate with VC; Strangler is less than that, coming in somewhere just over 34% if memory serves. Obviously, twin-linking is good, but with a Sniperfex I'm getting three shots- two VC one BS- against your single-shot-with-reroll. A TL Strangler will hit reasonably often, but it's still only S8, which means against anything problematic (AV11+) there is a very good chance you won't do anything to it, god forbid AV13 or 14. Three shots means I can miss with a BS, miss with one VC, and if the third manages to hit I still have a nigh-guaranteed shake against anything that isn't a Monolith or Land Raider.
    Yeah, but I don't fire strangler at tanks (usually), cos the likelyhood of getting the hole over the vehicle's hull is unlikely. So, taking your maths at face value (blast weapons are quite weird to work out with math-hammer, cos you don't technically 'miss' with them, you just scatter, which gets into the meta-game of enemy deployment ie it could just scatter onto a seperate target entirely), you waste the strangler and get one hit with the Venom Cannon. Alright, lets roll for damage...damn, I need at least a 4+ to do anything.

    If we compare to a Zoey brood, you can see why Venom cannons = fail. Zoey's fire 3 shots of S10 at same BS3, but with 12" less range. They get 1-2 hits, and at worst they'll glance on a 4+, penetrate on a 5+. Against most other types of vehicle (most common form are transports), they're essentially firing railguns at medium range.

    I find it hard to call a S10 AP4 Assult 2 gun "crap." Maybe my standards are just too low, but most armies would kill for something like that at a bargain-basement price of 35pts. Firing two weapons is one of the main strengths of being an MC- if you don't use it, you're wasting major potential to up your fire output.
    I would, because its a weapon which
    A; Has no other purpose but anti-tank, yet fails to do significant damage even the lightest armour which isn't open-topped
    B; Fires 2 shots a turn at BS3

    As for firing two gun, yes that's cool, but the strangler and venom cannon are the only two bio-weapons with 36" range (so taking devourers/death-spitters isn't really an option). At that range, you can avoid assaults (which deliver those nasty hidden powerfists) and some anti-MC weaponry (plasma guns, meltaguns, multi-meltas), and increase your chances of gaining 4+ cover from nearby broods (probably Warriors, if not another MC like a walking Tyrant).
    Maybe you have good times with the venom cannon (or just play a lot of mechanised Orks), but it got seriously nerfed by the new combined damage table for glancing. Back in the day, it could be counted on to disable enemy armour (or on a good day even kill it); these days, you need good dice to cause the most minor damage.
    Remember, that S10 simply means you're likely to equal the AV value (going over doesn't make a difference), it doesn't help at all when you go to roll damage. Landraiders now pack Machine Spirit without exception (so stun/shaken doesn't do much), Monolith laughs at your glancing (it too can fire most of it's guns while stunned/shaken). Against lighter armour, the strangler and even death-spitters end up better, because unlike the VC they have a chance to penetrate.
    Basically, it boils down to this: if you're running, you aren't shooting. It seems pretty "Duh!," but why put guns on something that wants to be running to get into CC as soon as possible? And if you're going to stop and take shots, why do you have all those CC biomorphs on there? Tyranid units should be specialized- aim all your biomorphs to accomplishing one purpose and take a different unit for other roles. Even then, I think you undervalue Warriors that are "just" double-wound Marines with +1S while in CC. Even basic Warriors can put some serious hurt on most armies, and if they have another squad to back them up they can take anything short of assult specialists.
    Why would I be Running? The idea is a slow march into enemy lines, laying down bio-weapon fire (stranglers, deathspitters, and fleshborers for when I get to point-blank range). The whole army packs assault weapons, so picking when to assault is largely a personal preference, you can still shoot with maximum effectiveness that turn.
    As for Warriors, yes I do see them as 'glass cannons', because mass S4 can pull them down (unless you shell out for 'carapace). You need to cause maximum damage before the enemy gets their return attacks in (especially those annoying hidden powerfists). Basic Warriors are good, but S5 Rending+bio-plasma at I10 is even better.
    I believe in making each unit stand on it's own two feet, because you never know what casualties you'll take or how you'll be positioned at a given time in-game. Warriors with S5 Rending attacks at I5 can take on pretty much anything, and their bio-plasma can net a few kills prior to their regular attacks.

    Also, "Ravener Warriors" are actually pretty much the same price. Leaping, ST+RC, +1 WS, +1 I, Bioplasma works out to the same price as a ST+RC Ravener, but with the advantage of Synapse and the disadvantage of no Fleet or DS (and Bioplasma instead of one normal attack, which is good and bad.)
    Yeah, but you give up completely their ability to lay down nasty bio-weapon fire prior to the charge. Warriors offer some of the best ranged firepower in the list (Carnifex are a bit 'eggs in one basket' at times), it's as much a waste as a Tau player taking twin-flamers on a Crisis suit and Deepstriking him behind enemy lines.
    With the list you initially posted, I can trim ~120 points off it between the Gaunts, Warriors, Fex, and Tyrant; with that, I can buy an entire squad or Raveners or an Elite Fex for that price- or 24 gaunts, or a whole brood or Warriors, or any number of other things. And, in most cases, the "trimmed" units will be just as effective- I can make my original brood of Warriors just as shooty or choppy as yours and have a second brood to boot which can fill the other role that you had yours multitasking into (and both of them doing it better, to boot) or I can make them both the same and have twice your firepower in that respect. Learning to trim unnescessary upgrades is key to having a good 'Nid army, because it's possible to go completely hog-wild with them and end up with Gaunts that cost 15 pts each.
    Yeah, hence I spent all the best gear on the Warriors+Carnifex, while keeping the cannon fodder simple+effective. Maybe I could squeeze in a few more models here and there, but thats more Kill-points (something you do need to keep an eye on in 5th edition) and having several 'meh' units is worse than having a few less, but much more effective, units.

    Multi-tasking is what Warriors need to do, they are the workhorse of the Tyranid list and central to a balanced list. They offer both shooting and close-combat support, something other Tyranid units don't have (Gaunts are just bullet absorbers, Genestealers+Ravenors are pure combat, Carnifex are kinda like Wraithlords in that they're best used at range, they hit hard but slow in combat). Early stages of the game, you want their lethal ranged firepower; as you head past Turn 3, you should expect to enter close-combat.

  2. #22
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    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    I have finally made a winning list, its configs are pretty easy. Though before I say them can I put the suggestion forward- you split up tyrants, warriors, fexes into cc/shooty variants as there are several decent ones here that may otherwise be overlooked.

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  3. #23

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    CC carnifex can work if you use them properly. I use them very well by buffing its stats up and debuffing the enemy which turns the Carnifex into a whole different type of Tarpit. Its a Tarpit that can't be wounded easily by even the strongest of attacks and dishes a moderate amount of wounds out in return.

    With t7, 2+ save, Bioacid (reroll wounds 1st round), scything talon, scythetail, tusks and a whip, extended carapace and +1 init (must have to go before powerfists) +1 ws and toxic miasma you become a tarpit.

    Against 5 grey knights with 15 ws:5 str:6 powerweapon attacks on the charge I won combat. I charged them and they have to pile in to base contact. Now they drop 1 ws and 1 attack leaving them with 10 ws 4 str 6 attacks. 10 ws 4 attacks hit on 4's so mathammer says thats 5 hits, of those 5 hits they wound on 5's and mathhammer says thats 1.5 wounds. Your hits back should be 5 attacks on the charge, thats 2.5 hits and 2.5 wounds. You win combat. They stick due to fearless and next turn your sythetail kicks in to make up for not charging with tusks and you kill them off.

    Or you charge orcs and this forces thier boss on bike into base contact, you kill him since he hits on init1 with powerfist. The other orcs cant hurt you because you charged them and you are t7, they are str 3 and cant hurt you. You just chew up orcs until they run and die.

    1 carnifex chewed up 2 whole units of khorne berzerkers with powerfist in one game, another game it killed and avatar and 2 of the edlar walkers.

    If people dont deal with your carnifex at long range then it will deal with them at close range.

    The problem I have with shooting fex's is that a smart opponent kills all your other units and your teeth are ripped out and you stand back shooting feebly like a bear without any teeth or claws. My cc fexes force my opponent to choose thier poison, either shoot the fex's or the genestealers but one or the other is going to get to you.
    Last edited by Dead Man Walking; 16-11-2008 at 22:48.

  4. #24

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    You have some nice but rather expensive builds. IMHO with nids it's best to keep them cheap and numerous. My builds are;
    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Hive Tyrant:
    CC Flyrant; 2 x Scything Talon, Wings, Fleshooks & Warp Shield=170 points
    Best used vrs non-powerfisted units. Can absorb tons of punishment while dishing out 6 charge attacks that hit almost all on 3, wound on 2 or 3 and allow no save.

    Shooter; 2 x TL-Devourer, Enhanced Senses, Toxin Sacks, Fleshooks, Ex Carapace & Psychic Scream=148 points
    Sit in cover in the middle to provide synapse, surround with cheap gaunts, keep a countercharge unit nearby & shoot until the end of the game.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Brood Lord:
    Extended Carapace & Fleshooks=83 points
    Tendrils is a nice idea but as an independent character he can be picked off in close combat too easily to go last vrs a unit in cover. It's best that he goes first and tears up some enemies before they attack back.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Lictor:
    Don't.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Warriors:
    TL-Devourer, Enhanced Senses, Toxin Sacks and Ex Carapace=38 points each
    Sit in cover in the middle to provide synapse, surround with cheap gaunts, keep a countercharge unit nearby & shoot until the end of the game. Don't send into close combat unless you have no other choice.
    or
    TL-Devourer, Enhanced Senses, Toxin Sacks and Wings=49 points each
    Sit in tall ruins in the middle to provide synapse & shoot until the end of the game. Don't send into close combat. Move if an assault unit gets close.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Genestealers:
    Fleshooks x 10-12 models=170-204 points
    If on the offense: Keep in cover behind an advancing wall of gaunts with as many models as you can fit. Kill your opponent with a bucket of dice.
    If used defensively: Use to countercharge opponents who go after your synapse or Monstrous Creatures.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Gaunts:
    Basic Termagaunt x 32=192 points
    Move the front rank in one great big wave, 2 broods behind in groups to the left and right & repeat on the other side of the board with 3 more broods. Drag your opponent down with more model than they've got shots.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Hormagaunts:
    Fleshooks x 16-20=176-220
    If on the offense: Send forward with a Flying Tyrant to keep it out of close combat with models it can't fight (powerfists).
    If used defensively: Use to countercharge opponents who go after your synapse or Monstrous Creatures.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Ripper Swarm:
    Don't.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Ravener:
    Don't.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Gargoyle:
    12-16 per brood=144-192 points
    Keep behind cover, outspeed your opponent's ability to react and charge weak CC units without a lot of attacks.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Zoanthropes:
    In a CC Zilla list; Catalyst and Synapse=50 points each
    Both powers keep the fex's alive.
    In a Swarm list; Synapse and Warp blast=65 points each
    One power controls the swarm while the other takes out tanks.
    If in a list with Dakkafex's and Dakkatyrants; The Horror and Psychic Scream= 50 points each
    Keep 3" in front to keep the fex's alive, out of close combat and the enemy in fear.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Biovore:
    Don't

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    Carnifex:
    Elite Shooter (Dakkafex); Enhanced Senses, Fleshooks & 2 x TL-Devourer=114 points.
    Make into a Heavy Support with Spine Banks instead of Fleshooks and 1-3 defensive biomorph (Bonded Exoskeleton, Extended Carapace, or Reinforced Chitin)=133-178 points.
    Keep 3" behind Zoeathropes and Tyrants with Psychic Scream. Shoot anything in range and charge anything that doesn't.

    Elite Close Combat; Adrenal Gland, Toxic Miasma, Fleshooks & 2 x Scything Talons=114 points.
    Make into a Heavy Support with Tail Weapon (Scythe), Tusked and 1-3 defensive biomorph (Bonded Exoskeleton, Extended Carapace, or Reinforced Chitin)=149-194 points.
    Keep 6" in front of a Zoeanthrope with Catalyst.
    Walk, run, be a bullet sponge, walk, run, be a bullet sponge, walk, run, be a bullet sponge, walk, charge, kill, walk, charge, kill, walk, charge, kill, win.
    The only thing better than outnumbering your opponent 2 to 1 is outnumbering them 3 to 1.

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    and the Dice Like Thunder Podcast

  5. #25

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    Thank you for your replies. Im really happy many ppl want to give their view on their optimal Nid builds. However, there doesnt seem to be one predominant build which was to be expected. I might edit the first post and make the builds slightly more general by listing the options which are often recommended, and dropping the options which are under heavy discussion.

    @ max the dog: you seem to be a big fan of TL devourers on many models. Deathspitters seem the way to go with 5th edition on warriors for example. You have any reason why not to use these in preference of TL devourers?

    @ bio plasma on CC warriors: doesnt this make warriors even more (overly) expensive than they already are with leaping, +I, +WS, EC, RC, ST?
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  6. #26

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    Quote Originally Posted by Taipan View Post
    50% of armies on average are Marines, so you'll want (hell, need) Rending to kill them quickly. Anyway, against most things with an armour save, Rending is better than +1A. It adds lethality to the brood which can't be found readily in the list (with the exception of Genestealers), or in many army lists (most other armies only have Rending on pure assault units, having it on a shooty unit is nasty).
    Percent of MEQs depends a lot on where you play, but yes, they are the most common. Back to that central point, though: you're paying for upgrades that don't fit your primary role. Ignoring saves is nice and all, but most 'Nid weapons work simply by laying an ungodly number of wounds on the target and waiting for them to fail a save.

    Acid Maw is only marginal if you just assault basic infantry. You don't use the Tyrant to eat basic infantry (initially at least), she's been brought onto the tabel instead of another Warrior brood, so she can eat enemy heroes and Monstrous Creatures.
    Most "hero" units (bar Orks) have the same T as their non-heroic counterparts; SM is a perfect example of this, likewise Eldar. When you're S6, rerolling wounds is really only useful against MCs and the like, but there just aren't that many of those around. Carnifex, Tyrant, Wraithlord, Greater Daemon... I guess Plague Marines/Bikes let you reroll the wounds on 3+? Tyrant shouldn't be dancing with Wraithlord/Fex anyways, at least not alone (S6 vs T8, even with a reroll, is damn risky) as squads of 'Stealers can do the job far better. The Tyrant's only advantage over them is speed, which is really only needed to hunt down a Winged Daemon Prince.


    Not Tzeentch, Slannesh .
    :\ I shouldn't post when I'm tired.

    I don't understand what point you're making; higher Initative is always better than low Initiative, ask any Ork player.
    See that's the thing, it isn't. Once you're higher I than them, it's irrelevant how much higher. Both our Tyrants go ahead of SM squads, IG of every variety, most CSM, Orks, Necrons, a fair number of DE, Tau, etc, etc. Yours goes faster than SM characters that don't use PF/TH (and with S4 those guys aren't exactly going to be chopping you up...) and Eldar/DE/Slaanesh heroes. Some of whom will still go ahead of you despite the upgrade. It's very margin (9/10 games it won't even come up), very expensive and simply not doing anything for all those points.


    Well, all that massed bolt pistol has to kill something (cos it re-rolls to wound). I find, like with Orks, that once you go over 20 models in a squad it just becomes too unwieldy and slow. Anyway, another 4 models isn't a big difference, I don't see the need to totally gimp the unit of any effectiveness (yay, twin-linked laspistol!), just to get 4 more Gaunts.
    Laugh all you want, any IG player can tell you Las weapons get their share of wounds in. It's not terribly reliable, but you can still strip that last wound off a champion or clean up the two or three guys contesting an objective if you have to.

    Also, I tend to run ~4 squads of Gaunts. Getting over 20 guys in a squad is not really a problem for me, not to mention the fact that the "standard" Ork mob these days is thirty guys...



    No no, you missed the point. I'm saying, it's 5 points more to just buy a twin-linked strangler, compared to buying a single venom cannon (no 2nd gun, not twin-linked).
    Yeah, I get that part. Except I'm still firing two guns per turn and you're only firing one. That means I'm hitting way harder than you, for not all that many points more.

    1. At best (after buying ES for the 'Fex), you get 1 hit per turn on average.
    So? That's all I'm expecting. Since it's S10, that "only one hit" is pretty much guaranteed to get a roll on the damage table. Your Strangler is only "hitting" 33% of the time and with the 'Fex's low BS it's gonna scatter pretty far.

    2. The only vehicles you can reliably threaten are open-topped; aside from Orks and a handful of other light vehicles (Sentinels, Piranha etc), other vehicles laugh at your damage potential. Most Imperial/Chaos vehicles pack extra armour (even after the price increase), so on transports (the only thing usually moving inside 36" of your Carnifex) it's a bit pointless.
    You're misunderstanding the role of VC; it keeps the big tanks from delivering their pie plates on our vulnerable units and slows the vehicle enough that our CC can close with it. If they run it away so we can't get to it? Super, now the tank/transport is on the other side of the table and isn't a threat. And yeah, once in a blue moon it might actually immobilize a tank or blow its guns off, but that's not what it's for. It's a 35pt delaying tactic that says "I'm willing to sacrifice my 'Fex's shots this turn to deny you the use of your 140 pt tank."

    3. It eats up points you could use on defensive upgrade and/or twin-linking the strangler.
    I will take this opportunity to point out that you are rather liberal with slathering the upgrades around on your units; why the sudden stinginess here? Shaken/Stunned tanks can't shoot at me; that's a pretty big defensive upgrade in my mind, and it applies to my whole army, not just the one 'Fex.

    Doesn't auto-penetrate, you're assuming the target is open-topped. Most vehicles are not. 'Only glancing' is pathetic.
    I was making a joke about the venom cannon's effectiveness; in-game I would never shoot any vehicle with anti-infantry weapons.
    Since the quote you refer to was specifically about its effectiveness against Ork vehicles (which are almost all AV11, it pretty much does penetrate every time.

    But now we come to the point: I'm using the Sniperfexes as AT. You're using yours as AP. No inherent problem there; most units can fill a variety of roles, and I run plenty of anti-troop 'Fexes, although usually in the Elites slot rather than Heavy. The question is, though: where's your army's anti-tank? It sure isn't the 'Fexes, not with one S8 weapon. Zoanthropes only have 18" range and are fragile compared to the 'Fex, so you won't be able to engage tanks with them until turns 3-4. Flyrant is risky and also can't engage tanks on the early turns of game. (You also have it kitted for anti-character, much of which is useless as AT.) Stealers, Raveners, Warriors, and other CC units suffer from the same problems as the Flyrant.

    So what are you using for AT? Maybe you don't need it; as mentioned, different playgroups have different styles. In my area, however, mechanized armies are fairly common and random Spitters and Thropes simply aren't enough to cope with IG tank spam, multiple Tau Hammerhead pie plates, SoB Rhino rush, etc. In discounting our most effective tool in combatting many of these armies you're doing the unit a huge disservice.




    If we compare to a Zoey brood, you can see why Venom cannons = fail. Zoey's fire 3 shots of S10 at same BS3, but with 12" less range. They get 1-2 hits, and at worst they'll glance on a 4+, penetrate on a 5+. Against most other types of vehicle (most common form are transports), they're essentially firing railguns at medium range.
    Zoanthrope's S10 blast requires an additional roll for the Psychic test, has 18" less range (not 12"), and I've never denied their usefulness. I even mentioned in my first post that WB Zoeys are one of the main builds for them, and I generally run three of them in my 1500 games, so yes, they are more reliable for actually killing a tank.

    However, there are two problems. First, Zoeys are fragile; T4, 2+, 2 wounds. If your opponent is reasonably smart, he'll concentrate all his Las, Plas, and Melta fire on them early and deny you the ability to harm his tanks quite quickly. Second, the short range. 18" is not very far; a tank can easily stay out of this distance while putting out respectable (or even deadly!) firepower. So again: you'll have to spend 2-3 turns chasing it down before you can even try for a shot, wheras a Sniperfex with its doubled range will probably be active from turn 1.

    Against transports and targets that want to close with you, Zoeys do just fine. It's that Basalisk hiding in the back corner dropping Ordinance or the Fire Prism dropping spheres of flaming death into your ranks that are going to be a huge problem for you to handle.


    As for firing two gun, yes that's cool, but the strangler and venom cannon are the only two bio-weapons with 36" range (so taking devourers/death-spitters isn't really an option). At that range, you can avoid assaults (which deliver those nasty hidden powerfists) and some anti-MC weaponry (plasma guns, meltaguns, multi-meltas), and increase your chances of gaining 4+ cover from nearby broods (probably Warriors, if not another MC like a walking Tyrant).
    Stop me if I'm wrong, but this sounds like you're arguing for the VC. Keeping out of PF/PK assults, getting cover saves against AP1/2 and having matching range all seem like positive arguements for mounting the two weapons together. Am I missing something?

    Against lighter armour, the strangler and even death-spitters end up better, because unlike the VC they have a chance to penetrate.
    Afraid not, my friend. Let's look at the number: Warrior DS is S6. Against most transports, which are AV10 (we'll give the benefit of rounding here) that means they will glance on a 4 and penetrate on a 5/6. Assuming they hit, of course, which is roughly a 40% chance. (Again, depends on size of chassis, etc, but we'll give benefit of the doubt here.) So a brood of six Warriors with Deathspitters (~240 pts, more for your version) will average... one glance or penetrate per turn. A 'Fex, costing only 150 pts, will average about 1.5 glancing/penetrating hits (from VC and BS). Obviously there are advantages and disadvantages to each in terms of footprint, cover, total wounds and toughness, etc, etc, but if you're arguing killing power against transports you are gravely mistaken.


    Why would I be Running? The idea is a slow march into enemy lines, laying down bio-weapon fire (stranglers, deathspitters, and fleshborers for when I get to point-blank range). The whole army packs assault weapons, so picking when to assault is largely a personal preference, you can still shoot with maximum effectiveness that turn.
    Because, as I said, every turn you don't use those CC biomorphs is wasted points. If my melee Warriors engage in six fights when yours only get in four, I've done my job better. Similarly, every turn you spend in CC is a turn you aren't shooting. My shooty Warriors will make better use of their guns than yours will because I don't feel any particular need to get them into fights.

    Also, as pointed out several times above, your "slow march into enemy lines" leaves them plenty of time to cover you in pie plates and flamers. There's something to be said for versatility in a Tyranid force, certainly- everything we have is at least reasonable in CC- but while you're waltzing towards them, the all-shooty army is tearing you to pieces with superior firepower and the all-CC army is rushing in full tilt because their armies have focus. They will pick a game and beat you at it and your units aren't flexible enough for their points cost to fight them at the other one- that's what Marines do, not Tyranids. We can play both games, and some units do it well (Tyrants and Fexes are always hell in CC), but trying to unspecialize your whole army like that is asking to be run over.


    Yeah, but you give up completely their ability to lay down nasty bio-weapon fire prior to the charge. Warriors offer some of the best ranged firepower in the list (Carnifex are a bit 'eggs in one basket' at times), it's as much a waste as a Tau player taking twin-flamers on a Crisis suit and Deepstriking him behind enemy lines.
    Funny, I see a lot of Tau players running that these days. But the thing is, I don't care that I'm giving up that ability; I'll arrive in CC 1-3 turns earlier than you and tear a shooty army to pieces before he severely hurts me, or be able to fight a choppy army on fair terms, rather than hoping my mediocre shooting has done enough damage to cripple him. Don't fool yourself: Warrior shooting is only medicre. That brood of six TL Devourer guys is no better than a Tau player's basic Fire Warriors at laying down the hurt at range.


    Yeah, hence I spent all the best gear on the Warriors+Carnifex, while keeping the cannon fodder simple+effective. Maybe I could squeeze in a few more models here and there, but thats more Kill-points (something you do need to keep an eye on in 5th edition) and having several 'meh' units is worse than having a few less, but much more effective, units.
    Except that your cannon fodder has upgrades on it, too. Call them 'meh' if you want, but I'll bet on my Warriors + Raveners against your Warriors any day.

    Multi-tasking is what Warriors need to do, they are the workhorse of the Tyranid list and central to a balanced list. They offer both shooting and close-combat support, something other Tyranid units don't have (Gaunts are just bullet absorbers, Genestealers+Ravenors are pure combat, Carnifex are kinda like Wraithlords in that they're best used at range, they hit hard but slow in combat). Early stages of the game, you want their lethal ranged firepower; as you head past Turn 3, you should expect to enter close-combat.
    Well said, but why are you paying points to upgrade them? In a pinch, yes, shooty Warriors can assult something, but I simply can't see detracting from the rest of the army's capability in order to do so. You're spending 50+ points- an entire squad of Gaunts or some major upgrades to a 'Fex or such- to have a little "well maybe this will be useful sometime just in case." Wheras my three extra 'Fex wounds, or ten additional alblative gaunts for capturing objectives, or one-and-a-half Warriors or whatever will help me out all the time, every game, no matter what. It's not a matter of "this will never be good," because it will, sometimes. It's a matter of how often it's going to come up.

  7. #27

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    Percent of MEQs depends a lot on where you play, but yes, they are the most common. Back to that central point, though: you're paying for upgrades that don't fit your primary role. Ignoring saves is nice and all, but most 'Nid weapons work simply by laying an ungodly number of wounds on the target and waiting for them to fail a save.
    They do fit my primary role though; 2nd wave. It's no good tying up the enemy in Gaunt tarpits if I don't bring in a good heavy-hitter to take them out. S5 Rending attacks do the trick, as does bio-plasma.

    Most "hero" units (bar Orks) have the same T as their non-heroic counterparts; SM is a perfect example of this, likewise Eldar. When you're S6, rerolling wounds is really only useful against MCs and the like, but there just aren't that many of those around. Carnifex, Tyrant, Wraithlord, Greater Daemon... I guess Plague Marines/Bikes let you reroll the wounds on 3+? Tyrant shouldn't be dancing with Wraithlord/Fex anyways, at least not alone (S6 vs T8, even with a reroll, is damn risky) as squads of 'Stealers can do the job far better. The Tyrant's only advantage over them is speed, which is really only needed to hunt down a Winged Daemon Prince.
    Actually, with the re-roll it's highly likely you'll get 1-2 wounds on him, which equates to 2-4 unsaved wounds (thanks to implant attack). He has no invul, so he dies.
    Speed isn't just needed to hunt down other winged MC's like Princes; it also helps in quickly intercepting enemy MC's before they can tear up your army too badly. Jumping on that Wraithlord before he can chip away at your Carnifex, or killing that Daemon Prince before he starts Lashing your stuff into little clusters for his blast weapons to annhilate.
    See that's the thing, it isn't. Once you're higher I than them, it's irrelevant how much higher. Both our Tyrants go ahead of SM squads, IG of every variety, most CSM, Orks, Necrons, a fair number of DE, Tau, etc, etc. Yours goes faster than SM characters that don't use PF/TH (and with S4 those guys aren't exactly going to be chopping you up...) and Eldar/DE/Slaanesh heroes. Some of whom will still go ahead of you despite the upgrade. It's very margin (9/10 games it won't even come up), very expensive and simply not doing anything for all those points.
    You forget about relic blades, and the Libby's ability to use 'Might of Ancient's (which boosts him to S6 also). Your Tyrant isn't too hard to kill; at best you have a 6+ invul (most people will be taking armour-ignoring guns/close-combat weapons to kill her), and she only has 4 wounds to chew through.
    Higher Initative is always necessary, because most of the best characters pack I5, and you need to strike ahead of them. Taking no damage and wiping out that enemy character/MC is better than going down together (something I see a lot with MC duels).
    Laugh all you want, any IG player can tell you Las weapons get their share of wounds in. It's not terribly reliable, but you can still strip that last wound off a champion or clean up the two or three guys contesting an objective if you have to.
    Thanks, but I prefer bolt pistols that re-roll to wound vs 4 more chumps w/ twin-linked laspistols. Come on man, it's 1pt, do you honestly need those few extra Gaunts? Like I said, tiny trade of unit size, big increase in effectiveness (relatively speaking, you still need 20-strong minimum to do much real damage to MeQ's).

    Also, I tend to run ~4 squads of Gaunts. Getting over 20 guys in a squad is not really a problem for me, not to mention the fact that the "standard" Ork mob these days is thirty guys...
    It makes them unwieldy, IMO. Also, you shouldn't take more than 3 broods of Gaunts, cos you want the other 3 Troops slots for those feeder tendril+scuttler Genestealers.

    Yeah, I get that part. Except I'm still firing two guns per turn and you're only firing one. That means I'm hitting way harder than you, for not all that many points more.
    Way harder? It's a single S10 hit, which costs a lot (like I said, for 5 points extra, you get a twin-linked strangler, compared to just one VC) and you waste the strangler on the vehicle.

    So? That's all I'm expecting. Since it's S10, that "only one hit" is pretty much guaranteed to get a roll on the damage table. Your Strangler is only "hitting" 33% of the time and with the 'Fex's low BS it's gonna scatter pretty far.
    Yeah, but at -2 on the damage table. Congratulations, you;
    1, 2 or 3; Shaken (can still move, transports/assault walkers largely don't care)
    4; Stunned (extra armour drops it back to the above, Machine Spirit/Daemonic Possession negates much of the effects of shaken/stunned)
    5; Weapon destroyed (annoying, but unlikely)
    6; Immobilised (very unlikely, and against shooty vehicles they again largely don't care, cos you didn't stop them from shooting)

    Most of the time, you'll just stun/shake, which most armies don't have much problem negating. This is all assuming you roll high enough to cause damage; I know from bitter experience with Tau railguns how often 'one-shot wonders' fail at the AV roll.
    You're misunderstanding the role of VC; it keeps the big tanks from delivering their pie plates on our vulnerable units and slows the vehicle enough that our CC can close with it. If they run it away so we can't get to it? Super, now the tank/transport is on the other side of the table and isn't a threat. And yeah, once in a blue moon it might actually immobilize a tank or blow its guns off, but that's not what it's for. It's a 35pt delaying tactic that says "I'm willing to sacrifice my 'Fex's shots this turn to deny you the use of your 140 pt tank."
    Like I said, Machine Spirit/Daemonic Possession laughs at that stuff, and transports largely don't care either. Also, smoke launchers can often totally negate your damage results (you have one hit, it's a 4+ save), as can hull down.

    I will take this opportunity to point out that you are rather liberal with slathering the upgrades around on your units; why the sudden stinginess here? Shaken/Stunned tanks can't shoot at me; that's a pretty big defensive upgrade in my mind, and it applies to my whole army, not just the one 'Fex.
    Liberal slathering? I'm basically adding three important defensive upgrades; the boost to T7 (which improves his survivability against S5-8), the extra wound (cheap for what it does and always handy) and a 2+ save (thus forcing previous AP2 onto it, which most armies have a limited supply of). Unlike a lot of rather unwise players, I'm not taking useless close-combat upgrades (he hits at I1, get over it), I'm taking bio-morphs which will keep him alive even after multiple heavy weapon barrages.
    Shaken/Stunned vehicles can shoot you, given the right upgrades (and transports largely don't care either).
    But now we come to the point: I'm using the Sniperfexes as AT. You're using yours as AP. No inherent problem there; most units can fill a variety of roles, and I run plenty of anti-troop 'Fexes, although usually in the Elites slot rather than Heavy. The question is, though: where's your army's anti-tank? It sure isn't the 'Fexes, not with one S8 weapon. Zoanthropes only have 18" range and are fragile compared to the 'Fex, so you won't be able to engage tanks with them until turns 3-4. Flyrant is risky and also can't engage tanks on the early turns of game. (You also have it kitted for anti-character, much of which is useless as AT.) Stealers, Raveners, Warriors, and other CC units suffer from the same problems as the Flyrant.
    If I have to take out a battle tank, I can use Outflanking Genestealers/ninja with Lictors. If it's a Monolith or Landraider, I'll just ignore it and remove the enemies Troops to force at least a draw.
    The Zoey's will probably just run for a few turns, then start laying down warp blasts for suppressing infantry. They remain the best anti-tank in the list, despite the range+psychic power issue.
    However, there are two problems. First, Zoeys are fragile; T4, 2+, 2 wounds. If your opponent is reasonably smart, he'll concentrate all his Las, Plas, and Melta fire on them early and deny you the ability to harm his tanks quite quickly. Second, the short range. 18" is not very far; a tank can easily stay out of this distance while putting out respectable (or even deadly!) firepower. So again: you'll have to spend 2-3 turns chasing it down before you can even try for a shot, wheras a Sniperfex with its doubled range will probably be active from turn 1.
    Yeah, but whereas you've been wasting a whole Gun-fex plining away with single hits, when the Zoey's do corner that tank (and with Outflanking Genestealers it's mobility is limited), they'll probably kill it.
    Against transports and targets that want to close with you, Zoeys do just fine. It's that Basalisk hiding in the back corner dropping Ordinance or the Fire Prism dropping spheres of flaming death into your ranks that are going to be a huge problem for you to handle.
    Venom cannon won't do **** against either of those targets either; Outflanking Stealers/Lictor ninjas is about you're only hope of shutting them down (unless you Deepstrike the Tyrant in).

    Stop me if I'm wrong, but this sounds like you're arguing for the VC. Keeping out of PF/PK assults, getting cover saves against AP1/2 and having matching range all seem like positive arguements for mounting the two weapons together. Am I missing something?
    No, I'd already established how bad the VC is. I was countering your argument that 'you should always take two weapons, because you can fire both'. The other bio-weapons have much lower range, and the VC sucks. Therefore, twin-linked the strangler is the best option.
    Afraid not, my friend. Let's look at the number: Warrior DS is S6. Against most transports, which are AV10 (we'll give the benefit of rounding here) that means they will glance on a 4 and penetrate on a 5/6. Assuming they hit, of course, which is roughly a 40% chance. (Again, depends on size of chassis, etc, but we'll give benefit of the doubt here.) So a brood of six Warriors with Deathspitters (~240 pts, more for your version) will average... one glance or penetrate per turn. A 'Fex, costing only 150 pts, will average about 1.5 glancing/penetrating hits (from VC and BS). Obviously there are advantages and disadvantages to each in terms of footprint, cover, total wounds and toughness, etc, etc, but if you're arguing killing power against transports you are gravely mistaken.
    Not really. I'll take 6 blasts over a single mediocre shot any day, especially against light armour.
    Point costs are largely irrelevant, it's a waste of the platform to plink away with 2 shots a turn, when you could unleash twin-linked AP4 battle cannon.
    Funny, I see a lot of Tau players running that these days. But the thing is, I don't care that I'm giving up that ability; I'll arrive in CC 1-3 turns earlier than you and tear a shooty army to pieces before he severely hurts me, or be able to fight a choppy army on fair terms, rather than hoping my mediocre shooting has done enough damage to cripple him. Don't fool yourself: Warrior shooting is only medicre. That brood of six TL Devourer guys is no better than a Tau player's basic Fire Warriors at laying down the hurt at range.
    I'm not using devourers, I'm using deathspitters. I'm not in a rush to enter combat, the big screen of Gaunts is designed for that. I'm not hoping my shooting does some damage, I'm counting on it. 5 x S6 blasts and a S4 large blast = pain to even MeQ units, especially when I lay down said firepower on the move.
    As for the Tau suicide flamer build, it's a retarded build and another example of wasting a gun platform.
    Because, as I said, every turn you don't use those CC biomorphs is wasted points. If my melee Warriors engage in six fights when yours only get in four, I've done my job better. Similarly, every turn you spend in CC is a turn you aren't shooting. My shooty Warriors will make better use of their guns than yours will because I don't feel any particular need to get them into fights.
    Not really. I explained this earlier; lay down the dakka, then enter combat at will.

    Also, as pointed out several times above, your "slow march into enemy lines" leaves them plenty of time to cover you in pie plates and flamers. There's something to be said for versatility in a Tyranid force, certainly- everything we have is at least reasonable in CC- but while you're waltzing towards them, the all-shooty army is tearing you to pieces with superior firepower and the all-CC army is rushing in full tilt because their armies have focus. They will pick a game and beat you at it and your units aren't flexible enough for their points cost to fight them at the other one- that's what Marines do, not Tyranids. We can play both games, and some units do it well (Tyrants and Fexes are always hell in CC), but trying to unspecialize your whole army like that is asking to be run over.
    They get to shoot up the Gaunts, this is true. As for the Warriors, they'll be further back enjoying the benefits of 4+ cover and 12 Synapse wounds.
    With a pure CC army, they picked the wrong fight. Gaunts tarpit their units in pointless bloodbaths, Stealers and Warriors enter to finish the fight with Rending. I'm not 'unspecialising' them, I'm making them effective in both roles. Warriors are the workhorse of the army, they have to perform equally in both roles (shooting in early game, bloody close-combat late-game).
    Carnifex = fail in close-combat, even when you shell out for all their stuff. Anything with decent WS and a hidden powerfist is going to grind it to death.
    Except that your cannon fodder has upgrades on it, too. Call them 'meh' if you want, but I'll bet on my Warriors + Raveners against your Warriors any day.
    No they don't, they have the default weapon, a fleshborer. You, for some reason, decide to totally gimp your own cannon fodder down to Guardsman quality, when they could get essentially bolt pistols for next to nothing. Bolt pistols that re-roll to wound. I could do the math, but it's pretty obvious that S4 with re-rolls to wound beats S3 with re-rolls to hit.
    Well said, but why are you paying points to upgrade them? In a pinch, yes, shooty Warriors can assult something, but I simply can't see detracting from the rest of the army's capability in order to do so. You're spending 50+ points- an entire squad of Gaunts or some major upgrades to a 'Fex or such- to have a little "well maybe this will be useful sometime just in case." Wheras my three extra 'Fex wounds, or ten additional alblative gaunts for capturing objectives, or one-and-a-half Warriors or whatever will help me out all the time, every game, no matter what. It's not a matter of "this will never be good," because it will, sometimes. It's a matter of how often it's going to come up.
    No, you're one-dimensional Warrior broods will suffer from one of the following ailments;
    1. Nothing to assault; They get lead poisoning, because you didn't supress enemy infantry with your own firepower sufficiently
    2. Steamrollered; When you do reach combat (you play Tyranids, close-combat is a natural talent of most things in the army, barring Carnifex and Zoey's), you get mauled by a bunch of Orks or a few Assault Marines. You slap them pathetically with S5 attacks, before getting munched entirely in the 2nd round, thus allowing them to leave combat, move+shoot+assault in their own turn, thus escaping direct retribution.

    Mine suffer from neither. They lay down S4 large blast and S6 blasts all the way into combat, offering fantastic anti-infantry firepower. Once in combat, they actually outperform Genestealers (even discounting the round of fire they get prior to the charge

  8. #28
    Commander WH40KAj's Avatar
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    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    Right before I post my configs for the three core choices I must post some background. I was lucky enough to get plenty of games when the 5th edition rulebook came out. It interesting reading everyones comments now their quota of games has caught up. I have written an extensive CC fex guide that can be found via search im sure. I've hit the point where things tend to gel. Of the last 11 games I have won 9, drawn 1 and 5 have been annhilation wins (cleared board) more worringly, about 4 were with killpoint mission in effect.
    Here are the configs I like, feel free to comment on them- I always welcome other players views (I will be basing what I say against MEQ statlines unless I say otherwise).
    The 3 core choices are warriors, hive tyrants and carnifexes.

    Hive Tyrants
    In my opinion the best shoot creature you have, so use it as such. I load both mine with 2x devourers.

    Here are my current configs:
    Tyrant w/Senses,Toxin Sacs, Carapace, Toxic Miasma, 2x TL Devourers, Psychic Scream = 162pts

    This one pretty much holds the line together providing a good amount of firepower. It effectively is my core letting me pick and choose where to attack based on it's shooting.

    Winged Hive Tyrant
    Tyrant, Winged, Toxic Miasma, Senses, 2x TL Devourer, Warpfield = 202pts

    This one is my baby, it effectively a mobile weapons platform thats a jack of all trades. Its best at drawing fire and with it destroyed I know my army is still capable of performing. Its normally used to soften up targets prior to the rest of my army attacking.

    My apoc tyrant/CC tyrant:
    Tyrant, Winged, WS+I adrenal Glands, flesh hooks, toxin sacs, toxic miasma, bone/lash, scything talons= 214pts

    I find due to their sheer firepower, tyrants are wasted as CC monsters (unless they are winged), but my apoc one is infact a cc tyrant. I prefer the use of lash whips over the extra attack, as its more effective to make the enemy lose 4,5 or 6 attacks to me gaining one. The bonesword ain't bad at helping anything nearby either.

    NB: TL Devourers considerably lose their effectiveness against T5 models, namely nurgle marines. In my last game they did barely nothing to the plague marines.
    Also with commanders at WS6 now, taking Adrenal Gland WS and toxic miasima lets tyrants hit them on 3's.

    Tyranid Warriors
    These boys for me, don't get taken unless its above 1500pts. They don't kill or survive half as much as my Hive Tyrants, or even Zoanthropes and so get used as a tertiary source of synapse. Here's my main squads config:

    Warriors (6) w/Adrenal Gland WS, Toxin Sacs, Deathspitter, Scything talons= 33pts (x6 is 198pts. One swaps his deathspitter for a barbed strangler so total is 203pts for the six).

    They are my main squad that I take above 1500. They sit on the gunline and fire, they tend to move behind my gaunts. That makes up for their save. Though it costs 18points more to make them all bolter immune, i dont tend to see it as worthwhile. In CC, they also have a good amount of attacks, Hitting and wounding on 3's in most instances.

    I have two other units that get used from time to time thes are:

    Warrior w/ Adrenal Glands WS+I, Bio-plasma, Toxin Sacs, 2x Scything Talons= 33pts.(wings can be added to these if you wanted them)

    Warrior w/ Wings, Adrenal Glands WS+I, Toxin Sacs, Rending Claws & Scything Talons= 46pts

    These two units really get used in bigger matches. One goes for sheer number of attacks, the other for mobility and armour. My preference is actually the first unit as they seem to dish out more punishment and are a more counter-attack unit. Rending needs lots of dice to make it sucessful and warriors can't really pull out enough dice to do it.

    A unit i want to take winged is this one however:
    Warrior w/Wings, Senses, Toxin Sacs, 2x Devourers (Making 1TL Dev) = 49pts

    They are pretty nice, but costly. A unit of 5/6 is ideal but not cheap.

    NB: I don't believe carapace is effective for the cost. However if they were my only HQ choice, then carapace would have been used. Also note the lack of flesh hooks on my cc warriors. This is because I believe that warriors are supporting and counter assualt units. Unless in big squads they lack the ability to take on units themselves


    Which brings me onto carnifexes. I will split this into two: Elite and heavies.

    Heavy fexes:
    Carnifex, Adrenal Glands WS+I, Bonded Exoskeleton, Carapace, Flesh Hooks, Mace Tail, Toxic Miasma, Tusked, Crushing Claws, Lash Whip = 199pts (Can add Reinforced Chitin if needed, I use it above 1500pts).

    This is my baby, a heavy fex is a cc fex really. You've got the best tank killers at range in elites now. He's had four matches and perfomed extremely well in 3 of them. All in all I can't think of a better heavy carnifex.

    Elite carnifexes:
    Carnifex, Barbed Strangler & Scything Talons= 113pts

    I have three of these in total, and I use two in 1500pts. They are by far the best AT/AA weapons platform we've got now, bar zoanthropes. Just keep them out of CC for as long as possible.

    The other one I want one of is this one:
    Carnifex, Adrenal Gland WS+I, Flesh Hooks, Scything Talons, Lash Whip= 114pts

    Can hold its own and still is an elite version of my bigger beastie, worth a look.

    I could put out more configs if people like, but to keep on topic those are my core choices. I will add my troop choices in another post as theres a lot here.

    WH40KAj
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  9. #29

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    My two cents on units I use

    *Broodlord:
    Tendrils is a nice idea but as an independent character he can be picked off in close combat too easily to go last vrs a unit in cover. It's best that he goes first and tears up some enemies before they attack back.
    A Broodlord CANNOT be picked off in close combat n 5ed -- the genestealers are his retinue, thus he counts as an upgrade character until his retinue is killed (read the retinue section of the IC rules).

    If you are talking broodlord you have to talk about the retinue. Best setup in my mind is Broodlord w/ feeder tendril and 5-8 genestealers w/ extended carapace and acid maw. Reroll hits and wounds for stealers? Ohh yeah baby. I would refrain from extra upgrades on the broodlord but WC and/or flesh hooks are not terrible based on points available. I prefer cheaper to leave more points for other stuff.

    *Shooty Hive Tyrant. Really depends on the rest of the army and your local area. I prefer to use weapons that take advantage of the Attack profile, so stick to devourers and VCs. Only take VCs if you feel you need light anti-tank/skimmer weaponry or want some extra range, otherwise the 2x devourers are fine.

    *Tyrant Guard. I prefer the scything talon guard with shooty Tyrant, as you want as much chance of getting out of a combat so you can get back to shooting but YMMV. And I think I'dd go w/ lashwhips when using a walking CC Tyrant, as a kitted tyrant is much more capable in close combat, so reducing attacks back is a nice bonus.

    *Lictor. Can't kit them but you can decide how many to take. One is good for an army with alot of scuttlers. One is also not bad for a shooty army, as then you give your opponent a bit of a scare if he tries to hug terrain. No more then one is needed though and many Tyranid builds should just avoid them.

    *Genestealers.
    -Feeder tendrils is a no brainer. If taking a bunch of stealers and not scuttling then taking half feeder and half flesh hook is not a bad choice.
    -Throwing in one squad of acid maw or toxin sac isn't bad either, but only in an amry that is using a lot of stealers. Toxin sacs especially if anti-tank is lacking
    -Take extended carapace with few execptions. If scuttling it is mandatory, as you will often not be getting the cover saves. If supporting a horde, you can get away with not taking it but it is till helps in close combat.
    -Take 8-10 most of the time, but 6 is not bad if supporting a horde or nidzilla.

    *Gaunt. Option one: take 1-2 squads with With out Number, spine or termagants, 10-16 in size. Smaller squads are better since they recycle. These should be used as objective grabbers but can be used as an intital screen then recycle to grab objectives. Care must be taken in KP games though (and is one reason why you'd take 14-16).

    Option two: Hordes of spinegaunts supported by feeder tendril stealers and synapse creatures. Taking scuttle is optional.

    Option three: don't take them and be free of synapse requirement (my preference).

    *Zoanthorpes: Should only take for the following reasons
    1: Synapse - Then synpase is a must. Probably warp blast or catalyst as a 2nd power.
    2: Psychic Choir - Take 3 zoanthorpes all with psychic scream. Should have atleast one hive tyrant with it as well (and lotsa shooting ability IMHO). 2nd power depends on whether synapse is needed, warp blast should be taken otherwise.
    3: Anti-tank - Zoanthorpes are last resort, stop gap anti-tank but can be used as such. Warp blast, 2nd power as needed (could skip 2nd power in some lists).

    *Carnifex. Shooty is well covered. Spinebanks are not a bad addition if points are available.
    CC: Elite is the Ninjafex -- +1 WS, Toxic Miasma, 2 Scything talons. Very cheap very durable close combat model.
    CC: Heavy, as above. Points allowing add in defensive upgrades (wound, 2+ save, T7), a tail weapon and tusked. Spine banks and/or plasma isn't bad either. All others are over priced.

  10. #30
    Chapter Master mchmr6677's Avatar
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    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    I have made a lot use of the broodlord, especially in lower point games (1500 and under) as my only HQ choice (note: in our leagues at our LGS extra points are awarded for killing HQ and top points units). I have a vanilla broodlord which I rarely run any longer as I now use a converted lictor as my broodlord. This CC monster has the full nines in upgrades; toxin sacs, extended carapace, flesh hooks, feedertendrils, and adrenal glands (ws). He is teamed up with 8-11 genestealers, which at higher levels have acid maw and/or extended carapace.

    Understanding that this broodlord is 100pts and requires a retinue, I think other then maybe the tyrant, no other hero in 40K is the point for point comparison. S6 power weapons which re-roll to hit and strike before even a dark elf archon are nothing to laugh at. Add in the retinue which re-rolls to hit and wound and you have a unit that will annihilate whatever it hits.

    In most of my use, this unit has been screened by a large unit of gaunts which have done a good job of ensuring that the broodlord and most of his retinue get to where they are needed.

  11. #31
    Commander WH40KAj's Avatar
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    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    Quote Originally Posted by mchmr6677 View Post
    I have made a lot use of the broodlord, especially in lower point games (1500 and under) as my only HQ choice (note: in our leagues at our LGS extra points are awarded for killing HQ and top points units). I have a vanilla broodlord which I rarely run any longer as I now use a converted lictor as my broodlord. This CC monster has the full nines in upgrades; toxin sacs, extended carapace, flesh hooks, feedertendrils, and adrenal glands (ws). He is teamed up with 8-11 genestealers, which at higher levels have acid maw and/or extended carapace.

    Understanding that this broodlord is 100pts and requires a retinue, I think other then maybe the tyrant, no other hero in 40K is the point for point comparison. S6 power weapons which re-roll to hit and strike before even a dark elf archon are nothing to laugh at. Add in the retinue which re-rolls to hit and wound and you have a unit that will annihilate whatever it hits.

    In most of my use, this unit has been screened by a large unit of gaunts which have done a good job of ensuring that the broodlord and most of his retinue get to where they are needed.
    How does he compare to a tyrant with 2x devourers? What about outflanking? I've found my broodlords tend to let me down utterly as they are a priority target, even with gaunts in the way.

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  12. #32

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    There's a lot of comments on here, many of them being very insightful, so instead of noting all of them, I'll just answer the OP with the most effective builds:

    Hive Tyrant: 194 pts
    -stat morphs: WS, Str
    -biomorphs: Wings, Implant Attacks
    -bioweapons: 2x Scything Talons
    -psychic powers: Warp Field

    Flyers pretty much have to be fighty. I prefer fighty Tyrants far more than fighty Carnifexes because Tyrants are Synaptic and have way better WS and I, while losing out on having redundantly-high Strength. (With Eternal Warriors everywhere, Implant Attacks > Str10.)

    I have not yet managed to fit Flesh Hooks on here yet (and there are plenty of tricks for subverting charging into cover, especially with single-model units), but Implant Attacks are more important. Gaunts simply can't kill characters half as well as this Tyrant can't. I don't bother with Initiative because I always strike before Powerfists anyway. I take Warp Field because, when Winged Tyrants are 0-1, you just have to protect them with a better save. Plus, I usually pass at least one of those 6+ IVs eventually. Though many don't give Hive Tyrants the WS upgrade, I do because it makes it harder for the plethora of WS6 stuff running around to hit the Tyrant in CC. This Tyrant is about surviving Characters, while still being able to beat them up.

    Hive Tyrant: 156 pts
    -stat morphs: BS, Str, Sv
    -bioweapons: 2x TLed Devourers
    -psychic powers: Catalyst

    This Tyrant really has no need for any fancy powers like Warp Field or Psychic Scream IMHO, so I just saddle it with Catalyst, probably one of the most generally-useful powers in the Tyranid list. It's almost like Flesh Hooks for anyone I want.

    Hive Tyrant: ??? pts (can't find Codex)
    -stat morphs: BS, Str, Sv
    -bioweapons: 2x TLed Deathspitters
    -psychic powers: Catalyst

    Basically a variant to the above Tyrant, this "Deathsperado" variant is something I'm playing around with to really nail Orks, because I hate Orks. Having two high-strength and accurate Templates are also quite useful against large, light vehicles. The accuracy even allows this Tyrant to shoot targets that I intend to charge with Genestealers, without the fear of a catastrophic miss wiping out half my heavy-hitters.

    Broodlord: n/a

    I don't bother with Broodlords because they eat up an HQ slot that could have been a Tyrant. Broodlords are generally overkill from what I've experienced with them. Their fights usually end where they massacre somebody and then get massacred by enemy firepower.

    Plus, Genestealers can do what Broodlords do and still count as scoring.

    Tyranid Warrior: 45 pts
    -stat morphs: WS, Str, I, Sv
    -biomorphs: Flesh Hooks, Leaping
    -bioweapons: Scything Talons, Rending Claws

    WS makes them harder to hit in CC, just like the Tyrant. Strength is so I can actually cause damage to AV14, or so any rend I get on an AV12 walker is going to either glance or penetrate. Initiative means that the Warriors can deny I4 return attacks. Carapace, an upgrade I don't see that often on Warriors, is mandatory on Warriors because they're Synapse, and they cannot afford to get wounded extra by Combat Resolution. Flesh Hooks are for the times where multi-wound units can't avoid charging through cover, and to compliment the I5 upgrade. Leaping is obviously for the speed, to practically guarantee 2nd turn assaults.

    Genestealer: 24 pts
    -Feeder Tendrils
    -Scuttling
    -Extended Carapace

    Everything here should look pretty normal. Scuttle clusters the enemy in the center, while Feeder Tendrils turn the Genestealers into force multipliers. (Catalyst counters the lack of Flesh Hooks.) The Carapace again is another atypical choice, but the times where that 4+ save is useful are even more now than ever, with No Retreat and the (in)accuracy of Barbed Stranglers being as irritating as they are. Plus, I mainly use these Genestealers to spring traps on Orks, as they're the most reliable anti-Ork stuff I have. Generally I use them in broods of 8, but if I'm expecting Orks, I use them in broods of 10. I have enough models in my collection to go with 3 broods of 8, but then I can only take 3 squads of Gaunts.

    Gaunt: 5 pts
    -Spinefist

    Walking forests. Since I don't bother with Without Number on Spinegaunts, these Gaunts usually form my back line, where they slowly sweep over terrain, take objectives and protect against flank marches and highly-mobile assault units that try to go after my shooty Carnifexes. Generally menial labor units.

    Gaunt: 9 pts
    -Fleshborer
    -Without Number

    Here's where taking Gaunts gets interesting. I prefer giving Without Number to Termegaunts over Spinegaunts because a revived Termegaunt beats a revived Spinegaunt in effectiveness, and since it's a kill point sacrifice either way, I simply revive the better Gaunt. I typically take them in broods of 16, as Without Number makes them fairly pricey to use in large amounts. I send them out in front of my Swarm to get close and shoot stuff, then take a charge and evaporate. Once they do, I pounce on the chargers with the remainder of my army. Only Orks can survive that.

    Raveners: 40 pts
    -Scything Talons & Rending Claws

    I don't really bother with Raveners that much. Warriors are stronger, tougher, and synaptic.

    Winged Warriors: 49 pts
    -see MaxTheDog's TLed Dev winged warriors

    Carnifex: 168 pts
    -stat morphs: BS, W, Sv
    -bioweapons: TLed Deathspitters, Barbed Strangler

    I much prefer the TLed Deathspitters over the TLed Devourers I used to field. The extra range lets me sit back more to contest friendly objectives from easy theft, and the usage of both a TLed cup holder and a pie plate can blow gaping holes clean through Ork hordes.

    BTW I really don't like Orks, if you can tell. Nowadays I tend to tailor my armies specifically to Orks because I can beat all other armies with Tyranids fairly easily without deliberately tailoring my list. But as a horde Tyranid advocate, it does not help my case against the Nidzilla crowd that an Ork is just as fast a table-crosser as a Termegaunt (and better with Ghazskull), fights waaaaay better, is tougher, is fearless without the need for Synapse, has Furious Charge, and even outshoots the Gaunt... for the same exact cost. Big bullies, they are... The only thing the Gaunt has left is apathy. When given Without Number (ironically making a Termegaunt the same cost as the former Slugga Boy, while the Slugga Boy has the same cost now as a finite Termegaunt) a Gaunt can die as much as it wants to and won't mind. If Orks lose heavy casualties, it actually matters.

    What worries me even more as a horde player is that the design team has displayed less-than-subtle hints that they want to make Tyranids even bigger in the future.
    100 Gaunts on the field to shoot down, 100 Gaunts on the field, you shoot just one, then reload your gun, 99 Gaunts still alive to shoot down
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    Of course an autistic kid would go 3-0 with that list, autistic kids are ******* smart, man. Just don't expect him to talk much during the battle.

  13. #33
    Chapter Master The SkaerKrow's Avatar
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    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    At this point, is there any value to a Venom Cannon in units of Warriors? With the amount of (open topped) Orky transports on the table these days along with high Toughness MCs, it seems like the ability to reach out and touch someone for two Strength 7 shots would be worthwhile, but the VC seems to be a pretty unpopular weapon these days.
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  14. #34

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelTitan View Post
    @ max the dog: you seem to be a big fan of TL devourers on many models. Deathspitters seem the way to go with 5th edition on warriors for example. You have any reason why not to use these in preference of TL devourers?
    The only thing the TL-Deathspitter is better at than the TL-Devourer is killing light armor. To me it's not worth the extra 5 points in an elite fex. He's only got one shot to do it and then it can just barely penetrate AV12 on a 6. For my points I'd rather lay waste to his scoring units and ignore the non-scoring vehicles. Monstrous creatures and genestealers are much better vehicle killers than any shooting we've got.
    But don't look at each model by it'self, look at the army as a group. I'm a big fan on 5 dakkafexs, 2 dakkatyrants with psychic scream, 3 zoe's with psychic scream and the horror and a massive horde of gaunts behind then. This setup is very good at killing infantry, making them run from shooting, keeping the opponent from charging and forcing the opponent off his objectives.
    The only thing better than outnumbering your opponent 2 to 1 is outnumbering them 3 to 1.

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  15. #35

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    Don't forget deathspitters have a greater range. 24" vs 18" is a big difference in 40k, meaning the difference between being in charge range of many units and being able to sit back out of most units charge range. It is also nice to not have to take enhanced senses, and just rely on scattering on larger units to help get you hits. Of course scatter can be an issue if the target is close (whoops hit my own guys with S6 templates -- Fail!).

    Greater range is why I am leaning towards strangler fexes for my elite carnifexes. Well that and they look better then the goofy dakkafexes.

  16. #36

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    Quote Originally Posted by Taipan View Post
    Thanks, but I prefer bolt pistols that re-roll to wound vs 4 more chumps w/ twin-linked laspistols. Come on man, it's 1pt, do you honestly need those few extra Gaunts? Like I said, tiny trade of unit size, big increase in effectiveness (relatively speaking, you still need 20-strong minimum to do much real damage to MeQ's).
    Yes, but 1 pt is a 20% price increase. I'll always have a fifth more guys than you, which means more cover saves, more attacks in an assult, more shots (albeit weaker ones), more buggers with 3+ or better cover saves holding an objective, etc, etc.

    I'm not saying that Termagaunts are bad- I'm still up in the air about them. It's just all you've said so far is "their gun is better," and I already knew that part. How are you using them to effectively project force? Their range is only 12", which is Rapid Fire distance. You're going to get chewed up pretty badly once you get that close. How do you compensate for that? Etc.


    It makes them unwieldy, IMO. Also, you shouldn't take more than 3 broods of Gaunts, cos you want the other 3 Troops slots for those feeder tendril+scuttler Genestealers.
    Two plus a Broodlord retinue has always been plenty enough for me.

    Way harder? It's a single S10 hit, which costs a lot (like I said, for 5 points extra, you get a twin-linked strangler, compared to just one VC) and you waste the strangler on the vehicle.
    I'm scoring a S10 and half a S8 (on average); you're scoring half a S8. How is that not way harder? I'm doubling your firepower. Against anything but AV14, I have excellent

    Most of the time, you'll just stun/shake, which most armies don't have much problem negating. This is all assuming you roll high enough to cause damage; I know from bitter experience with Tau railguns how often 'one-shot wonders' fail at the AV roll.
    Except that the VC isn't one-shot; it's two. You seem to be assuming that the second shot will always miss no matter what; well I must admit BS3 is far from ideal, plenty of other armies deal with BS3 just fine. You have a 75% chance of getting at least one of the two VC shots to hit. That is a reasonably reliable fire platform, even ignoring the BS.

    You've repeatedly talked about how terrible the VC is in an AT role; what do you suggest instead? The existence of special countermeasures (Machine Spirit, Demonic Possession, the new SM commander) that partially or fully negate what it does do not completely invalidate its usefulness. Land Raiders are difficult for ANY army to deal with, not just Tyranids. Our biggest weakness is against vehicles, and I run Sniperfexes to try and compensate for that weakness; what is your army doing? How do you take care of the transports, Possessed tanks, etc, that you keep bringing up here? Your CC Carnifex certainly won't catch them (they can outrun it) and you only have one Flyrant, and he's built to kill characters, not tanks.


    Liberal slathering? I'm basically adding three important defensive upgrades; the boost to T7 (which improves his survivability against S5-8), the extra wound (cheap for what it does and always handy) and a 2+ save (thus forcing previous AP2 onto it, which most armies have a limited supply of). Unlike a lot of rather unwise players, I'm not taking useless close-combat upgrades (he hits at I1, get over it), I'm taking bio-morphs which will keep him alive even after multiple heavy weapon barrages.
    I wasn't talking about the 'Fex, I meant your other units. I can see the usefulness of the 'Fex upgrades, and in the right situations I even take them- the +1W is well-priced and will never fail to come up. The +1Sv is gold in CC and sometimes useful outside of it. +1T is a bit pricy, but shines against Orks and IG. What I'm questioning is your 30-odd points upgrades on your Flyrant, the 60+ pts on your Warriors, etc. By removing just the Ini boost from the Tyrant, I earn enough extra points to double my 'Fex's firepower.


    If I have to take out a battle tank, I can use Outflanking Genestealers/ninja with Lictors. If it's a Monolith or Landraider, I'll just ignore it and remove the enemies Troops to force at least a draw.
    The Zoey's will probably just run for a few turns, then start laying down warp blasts for suppressing infantry. They remain the best anti-tank in the list, despite the range+psychic power issue.
    So your plans are:
    1. "I sure hope my opponent puts his vehicles along the edges of the board and next to terrain within Assult distance."
    2. "I sure hope that Land Raider/Monolith doesn't use its heavy armaments to devastate my troops and deliver assult squads/teleport things."
    3. "I sure hope my opponent doesn't have the ability to inflict six wounds to my sole anti-tank units."

    Forgive me if I don't think those sound very reliable.

    Venom cannon won't do **** against either of those targets either; Outflanking Stealers/Lictor ninjas is about you're only hope of shutting them down (unless you Deepstrike the Tyrant in).
    Right, but I can run all those things plus Sniperfexes, which means if my opponent decides to take more than one or two vehicles I'm still set. Wheras you have a very limited number of options and, against any Mech army, you're going to simply lack enough firepower to take a significant number of his tanks down before he devastates you.

    Point costs are largely irrelevant,
    Wait, what? What kind of universe are you from?


    No they don't, they have the default weapon, a fleshborer. You, for some reason, decide to totally gimp your own cannon fodder down to Guardsman quality, when they could get essentially bolt pistols for next to nothing. Bolt pistols that re-roll to wound. I could do the math, but it's pretty obvious that S4 with re-rolls to wound beats S3 with re-rolls to hit.
    Are you going to keep pointing out the obvious? I never said Spinefist is a better gun than Fleshborer. I said it's cheaper and fits the primary role (giving other units a cover save) better.

    But, to induldge, let's take a look at the numbers against Marines:

    20 Termagaunts: 10 hits, 7.5 wounds, 2.5 unsaved wounds

    24 Spinegaunts: 18 hits, 6 wounds, 2 unsaved wounds

    Considering how much you laud the superior firepower of the Fleshborer, that doesn't seem like that much of a difference. 25% more efficient, yes, but I have 20% more wounds and will hit much harder in CC.
    No, you're one-dimensional Warrior broods will suffer from one of the following ailments;


    Mine suffer from neither. They lay down S4 large blast and S6 blasts all the way into combat, offering fantastic anti-infantry firepower. Once in combat, they actually outperform Genestealers (even discounting the round of fire they get prior to the charge
    They outperform Genestealers for only 2x the cost and then some, yes. Here's another revelation: units that cost more are generally better. The point is, as soon as you get into CC, your guns are useless. I keep repeating this, but you don't really seem to be grasping it. If I use my CC upgrades for five turns, they are points better spent than if you only use yours for two. If I shoot for six turns, those guns are put to better use than your guns if you only shoot for three. It isn't just about what your units can do, it's about what they will be able to do. This isn't unique to Tyranids; look at any of the other Tactica threads and you'll see people reinforcing the idea that units should have a definate purpose and be designed to fill that purpose. Yes, you put a PF in Marine squads to cover a weakness, but you don't buy PFs for every member of the squad and add Melta Bombs just in case.

  17. #37

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    Ok, here is what I like to field which has been successful more often than not.

    Tyrant: Winged, +1S, +1I, +1BS, 2x twin devourer, flesh hooks, shadow of the warp 190pts.

    I find this tyrant can kill off a lot more than a specialist cc alternative and he can then charge to mop up the remaining survivors. Hr has the added benefit of denying lash of submission a few times each game. His record so far is -5 lash uses in one game!

    Tyrant: Walker, with +1S, flesh hooks, barbed strangler, lash + bonesword, masima, psychic scream. Added to him are 3 tyrant guard with flesh hooks, scything and rending. 280pts

    This alternative can soak up a lot of firepower and provide catalyst and psychic scream benefits to all broods nearby. If you add a psychic choir with warp blasts then it is a nasty combo.

    I only take one or the other tyrant.

    Broodlord: flesh hooks, feeder tendrils, toxin, 86 pts
    Retinue: 8x stealers flesh hooks, ext carp, toxin. 192pts (total 278 pts)

    This unit is expensive but is highly useful for outflanking of heavy weapons teams and tanks. S5 on the stealers mean even Mr L. Raider and Mr M Lith is no longer safe.

  18. #38

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    Thanks again for all your replies and extremely useful insights. Combining what has been said, i have updated the first post partly. I will update the rest when i have more time.

    Thanks to reveredchaplaindrake for his very clear format, which i now also use in the summary post.

    When updating the summary, i came across the following questions/issues.
    Please try to answer these to help me make the list more accurate


    1) Can it be concluded that CC oriented Hive Tyrants on foot are too slow to be considered 'one of the better builds' i.e. would you always be better of opting for one of the builds above in favour of a foot slogging CC Tyrant?

    2) Often you see bio-plasma on CC warriors but considering their already quite impressive offensive potential, is paying an additional 3 pts per model justifyable?

    3) One point to argue about is whether or not to TL the bioweapons on shooting warriors. TLed Devourers but single Deathspitter?

    4) Flying warriors seem to have become less popular under 5th edition because of the new running rules. Should they be included in this list?

    5) Please check preferred unit sizes of the updated units.



    THE LAST FEW REPLIES (after the one from reveredchaplaindrake) have not YET been included in the update due to me having little time. They will be included later if justified.



    Note on discussion between Taipan and Abusepuppy: as you might have seen and read in both other people's replies and the summary, single purpose builds are more favourite (in comparison to kitting out squads to serve both CC and shooting roles). People differ, preferences differ but maybe it is acceptable to say that IN GENERAL people prefer single purpose roles for their units. Lets not talk about this anymore to prevent further (i predict fruitless as both of you seem unconvinced about the other's arguments) debate on this specific topic.
    Last edited by SteelTitan; 18-11-2008 at 08:41.
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  19. #39

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    Yes, but 1 pt is a 20% price increase. I'll always have a fifth more guys than you, which means more cover saves, more attacks in an assult, more shots (albeit weaker ones), more buggers with 3+ or better cover saves holding an objective, etc, etc.

    I'm not saying that Termagaunts are bad- I'm still up in the air about them. It's just all you've said so far is "their gun is better," and I already knew that part. How are you using them to effectively project force? Their range is only 12", which is Rapid Fire distance. You're going to get chewed up pretty badly once you get that close. How do you compensate for that? Etc.
    It's 4 models, I'm not terribly worried about the point expenditure.
    There isn't much else to say, the fleshborer is better, the two units are otherwise identical. I don't mind paying 1pt extra for a decent gun, you seem to value 4 more models in the brood. (shrug)
    Two plus a Broodlord retinue has always been plenty enough for me.
    Yeah, but you could just as easily ditch the Broodlord and take them as Troops, thus gaining the ability to score+Fleet. 3 x Gaunt tarpits should be enough until the late-game, 4 seems excessive.

    I'm scoring a S10 and half a S8 (on average); you're scoring half a S8. How is that not way harder? I'm doubling your firepower. Against anything but AV14, I have excellent
    A S10 hit, that only glances. As I pointed out, most armies have counter-measures; in fact all armies have the option of hull down (most have turrets/sponsons which allow them to hide their bulk behind cover), which on a 4+ negates your long-range hit. At closer-range, hull down is harder to pull off.

    Except that the VC isn't one-shot; it's two. You seem to be assuming that the second shot will always miss no matter what; well I must admit BS3 is far from ideal, plenty of other armies deal with BS3 just fine. You have a 75% chance of getting at least one of the two VC shots to hit. That is a reasonably reliable fire platform, even ignoring the BS.
    They do, but they (IG, Tau to some extent) have a different doctrine against vehicles; they spam shots until they're bound to cause damage. You can't really spam VC's, the most you can get is 3 (at S10, .
    I am assuming the 2nd shot misses, because thats what happens (on average). We all make crazy dice rolls (both beneficial and detrimental), but at the end of the day probability is what we have to turn to in theoretical discussions. I'm sure if we played a game and your VC-armed Carnifex shot my tanks, it would probably land more than 1 hit a turn, but thats the vagaeries of fate.
    Something I should also mention; twin-linking the strangler is actually 2 points cheaper than just taking a single VC, because being a blast weapon I don't need Enhanced Senses (whereas the VC does).

    You've repeatedly talked about how terrible the VC is in an AT role; what do you suggest instead? The existence of special countermeasures (Machine Spirit, Demonic Possession, the new SM commander) that partially or fully negate what it does do not completely invalidate its usefulness. Land Raiders are difficult for ANY army to deal with, not just Tyranids. Our biggest weakness is against vehicles, and I run Sniperfexes to try and compensate for that weakness; what is your army doing? How do you take care of the transports, Possessed tanks, etc, that you keep bringing up here? Your CC Carnifex certainly won't catch them (they can outrun it) and you only have one Flyrant, and he's built to kill characters, not tanks.
    It kinda does, that was the point I made. If a weapon with largely no other purpose but anti-tank (it's only 2 shots, AP4, expensive) fails to perform as a passable anti-tank weapon, then you should look to alternatives.
    The great thing about you're other options (Rending the rear armour, using a Tyrant, Zoey's at near point-blank) is that they are highly effective against other units.
    I don't recommend tooling Carnifex for close-combat, they should be treated like Wraithlords; pseudo-walkers for carrying your heaviest guns.
    Flyrant is built to hunt characters, but he can just as easily switch to tearing up walkers and tanks.
    I wasn't talking about the 'Fex, I meant your other units. I can see the usefulness of the 'Fex upgrades, and in the right situations I even take them- the +1W is well-priced and will never fail to come up. The +1Sv is gold in CC and sometimes useful outside of it. +1T is a bit pricy, but shines against Orks and IG. What I'm questioning is your 30-odd points upgrades on your Flyrant, the 60+ pts on your Warriors, etc. By removing just the Ini boost from the Tyrant, I earn enough extra points to double my 'Fex's firepower.
    Well, said upgrades aren't going to buy me a whole lot more in the rest of the army (maybe a few Raveners, bigger brood sizes here and there), but they do make the equipped broods much more effective.
    I'm fully aware of the 'models over shiny wargear' style of a horde army like Tyranids, but you can go too far. Warriors have to do many things at once in a Tyranid list, the other broods can be left largely naked and still perform their set role effectively (ie Gaunts = moving cover, Genestealers take only bare essentials ie re-rolls to hit and Outflank). You might not be comfortable sinking over 200 points on 6 models, but when you realise what those 6 models can achieve, their points costs doesn't seem too excessive.

    So your plans are:
    1. "I sure hope my opponent puts his vehicles along the edges of the board and next to terrain within Assult distance."
    2. "I sure hope that Land Raider/Monolith doesn't use its heavy armaments to devastate my troops and deliver assult squads/teleport things."
    3. "I sure hope my opponent doesn't have the ability to inflict six wounds to my sole anti-tank units."

    Forgive me if I don't think those sound very reliable.
    This is a little disengenous, I have to say.
    1. Of course I expect my opponent to deploy his armour defensively (if he knows I've got Outflanking units). By the same token, those Outflanking broods dilute enemy firepower off the main force. He can obliterate one or the other threat, but I doubt both at the same time. Also, by clustering up (18" from both board edges at least), it gives those stranglers and deathspitters a field day against his army. Elite armies (like Marines) can probably still disperse effectively, but forces with over 60 infantry models are going to find it hard to deploy to avoid Genestealer flank attacks but still minimise blast causalties. It's positioning the enemy to my benefit.
    2. Landraider Crusader/Redeemer is my worst nightmare, especially if they pack a unit armed with flamers/dragonfire bolts. Regular Landraider is certainly good for chipping wounds off the 'Fexes and Tyrant, but not much else (he doesn't have the ROF to punch big holes in Gaunt broods). As for delivering assault units out of Landraiders, thats what the Gaunt screen is for.
    Monolith is hard on everyone, what can I say? BTW, your VC doesn't do much really; if you shake/stun he can still fire the 'everything in 12" takes D6 hits' gun, and still teleport stuff. If you immoblise, it's not a big deal (he's probably already Deepstriked into your lines anyway). If you cause a 'weapon destroyed', he loses shots from the AOE gun (can't actually destroy them), you can't destroy the ordnance shot from the crystal.
    3. "I sure hope my opponent doesn't have the ability to inflict six wounds to my sole anti-tank units."
    Yeah, but I have a 2+ save on the Zoey's, and 2 wounds apiece., So, if you don't have a power weapon/AP2-1 gun, you need to inflict 12 wounds on average to drop a Zoey. Plus they're all seperate targets, hence diluting enemy firepower (on the flipside they're each a Kill-point). If I do get shot with lascannons etc, I just use the abundant 4+ cover saves (although given it's height I may need to bring in Warriors, Gaunts are too short normally). The funniest part is explaining that they're Synapse Creatures, or within Syanpse range; makes the lone lascannon/battle cannon wound seem pretty worthless.

    Right, but I can run all those things plus Sniperfexes, which means if my opponent decides to take more than one or two vehicles I'm still set. Wheras you have a very limited number of options and, against any Mech army, you're going to simply lack enough firepower to take a significant number of his tanks down before he devastates you.
    Lets clarify. The most powerful tanks in most armies (lets ignore IG for a moment, I'll get to them) reside exlusively in Heavy Support; some (like Landraiders) can be bought as dedicated transports but they're quit expensive. So, at worst, you'll face 3 MBT's, and 3-4 APC's.
    MBT's usually pack long-range guns and the best armour, plus they usually have the most defensive upgrades on them. They'll probably have hull down against VC hits (in fact they'll most likely out-range you).
    APC's don't usually stop and shoot, they're busing moving+popping smoke. VC is certainly useful somewhat (shaking/stunning = vulnerable passengers, immobilise = certain death for passengers), but you'll only disable. You still have to crack the armour (to prevent it from camping an objective and scoring), which requires a weapon that can penetrate (Rending, massed deathspitter) or you firing all your Carnifex at a single APC and hope that with enough 'immobilise/weapon destroyed' you blow it up.

    I would also remind you that by spending a lot of points on tanks, your opponent probably has 4 Troops units max. Kill off two of them, he's probably only going to have 1 left for winning with (both of you should have a Troops choice securing the 'home' objective in your respective DZ's), whereas you have 5 initially (Tyranids can cheaply fill their Troops choices and still have specialists, mechanised armies are usually more compact).
    Wait, what? What kind of universe are you from?
    What I meant is, I think it's a greater flaw to waste a platform than it is to over-spend on it. You were showing with your analysis that Warriors w/ deathspitters are not efficient anti-tank units; I was countering by saying that taking a medicore gun on a platform and wasting that unit's potential is a bigger problem.
    Or maybe I was thinking of VP's no longer existing, or something...I dunno.

    Considering how much you laud the superior firepower of the Fleshborer, that doesn't seem like that much of a difference. 25% more efficient, yes, but I have 20% more wounds and will hit much harder in CC.
    Much harder? They'll lose and die horribly, thats their purpose. 4 models isn't going to swing it for you. I prefer to maximise what little damage they do before combat ensues, and in a losing combat 4 more wounds isn't going to make a huge difference.
    Dude, it's 1pt extra, and you get (as you have kindly calculated) 25% better shooting. That may translate to another dead Marine/2 dead Orks/whatever, it may not. Either way, you're not breaking the bank.
    Anyway, I can see we're not going to agree on this, so I'll stop pressing the issue. In all likelyhood, both my Termgaunts and your Spinegaunts will die before they even get a chance to shoot, so it's largely a moot point.
    They outperform Genestealers for only 2x the cost and then some, yes. Here's another revelation: units that cost more are generally better. The point is, as soon as you get into CC, your guns are useless. I keep repeating this, but you don't really seem to be grasping it.
    Sarcasm = obscuring the point.
    My guns aren't useless, they've been firing all game up until combat (and even before-hand, seeing as Warriors can't Fleet). My plan is clear combat quickly (hence the CC upgrades) and get back to firing. This works whether I'm getting charged (to get those Assault Marines off my back so I can resume fire support duties) or charging (those Gaunts have those Terminators all tied up, lets finish the fight decisively).
    If I use my CC upgrades for five turns
    Unless the enemy are Nids/Orks, I doubt this will happen. Most close-combat ensues in the late-game, early game is moving+shooting.

    they are points better spent than if you only use yours for two.
    True, but you're discounting the possiblity you're pure CC broods get annhilated/speedbumped then annhilated. Balanced Warriors can hang back and lay down the bio-weapon fire, choosing their combats. Your pure CC brood has no choice, they have to engage ASAP to make themselves useful.

    If I shoot for six turns, those guns are put to better use than your guns if you only shoot for three.
    Again, this is unlikely. It's not like the enemy is going to ignore the 5-6 S6 blasts and that S4 large blast mauling their infantry. You'll probably get tied up in close-combat, because entering a shooting match isn't exploiting their weakeness. Even if they don't win quickly, just holding your Warriors in close-combat for a few turns buys respite from your firepower.
    With my balanced brood, entering combat is a death-wish for all but the nastiest assault units. If they get into serious trouble I'll bring in Genestealers in support.
    It isn't just about what your units can do, it's about what they will be able to do. This isn't unique to Tyranids; look at any of the other Tactica threads and you'll see people reinforcing the idea that units should have a definate purpose and be designed to fill that purpose.
    I totally agree with that concept, and have espoused it myself on different armies/units. To clarify my position, I say that Warriors fufill a unique multi-purpose role in a Tyranid army. They are not pure shooty (Carnifex do that better, Tyrants as well), they are not pure assault (Raveners and Genestealers do that better), nor are they just there for Synapse (Zoey's/Tyrants can do that).
    They are there to provide a solid anchor to the whole swarm, and do all three roles at once. They provide the best Synapse coverage in the army, solid fire support and respectable close-combat ability, all in the same brood. Other armies don't have comparable units to Warriors (I don't mean in raw damage terms, I mean overall), they are quite unique. Hence my suggestion that they are the 'workhorse' brood of a Tyranid army. Other broods are specialists in one thing or another, or play the 'get in the way' role, Warriors do not have to stick to any one thing (and in my opinion shouldn't be shoe-horned into a single role, when they could do three effectively).
    Last edited by Taipan; 18-11-2008 at 11:06.

  20. #40

    Re: Tyranids - Warseer's Best Unit Config Summary

    I like the earlier suggestion to have at least 2 outflanking cc units. This way if you also have a decent number of deathspitters and barbed stranglers you can be assured of a high number of hits as your opponent sticks to the middle of the board.

    I recommend the broodlord and retinue for the one and a lictor for the other. Both give you a S6 model to hurl at rear tank armour.

    Troops: Genestealers. If they are being used as a second wave to a gaunt attack then give them feeder tendrils and toxin. The S5 is great against anything tough and the tendrils beef up all the other broods. Ext carp is not needed if the gaunts have already softened up the enemy, just keep to 10-12 models in the stealer brood to get enough attacks in to prevent taking too many saves in return.

    Gaunts: I go with both spinegaunts and termagants. The first are the speedbump and the second can potentially hurt tank and skimmer armour.

    Haumagaunts. These guys are becoming less useful. They need a few upgrades or specific support in order to get their points back. Toxin is my preference since the other upgrades can be achieved through support broods, ie: feeder tendril stealers nearby compensate for upgrading WS, catalyst Zoe or Tyrant compensate for not upgrading Initiative.

    If you support the hormies with tendril stealers and a catalyst model, then by all means take 20 of them, they will then cause a lot of hurt. Just remember to keep them in your second row behind the cheap spinegaunts until they are nearing charge range.

    Gargoyles: I actually like these guys, I just don't have enough of them. 16-20 are ideal. The bioplasma going at S4 I8 can (and has) brought down a greater daemon or 2. Their fleshborer can hurt rear tank armour, which is great if you deep strike them. I would even suggest 3 small broods of 12 each all deep striking behind enemy lines to try for a sneaky tank kill.

    Raveners: more attacks and faster than warriors. Just keep a catalyst model nearby and make the brood 3-6 models with rending and you are good to go.

    Carnifex: I think of these guys as fleshy dreadnaughts and should be used as such, ie: big guns (preferably the strangler and spitter) and little other upgrades. The cc versions are a points sink imo as they are still only I2 and still suseptable to AP2/1 guns. Yes they can be a pain in cc if they get there, but with more S6 weapons in the game (*cough* marines) they are not that versatile.

    A tyrant has better stats than a fex in all but one area, the S6 vs S10. That tells me that needing access to high strength bioweapons should be the only criteria for ever taking a fex. What smaller creatures lack in strength they make up for in rending.

    As an aside, why do people insist on warp field on a walking tyrant when for 10 points more they can rather get a tyrant guard who has 2 wounds and T6 with a 3+ save. Surely that is a better way of keeping your walking tyrant alive?

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