Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Ork Bowling Ball

As my friend has kindly shipped me all his orks more or less, I have been entertaining ways to use them and also kind of poking at the army in the general way.

A few things.  First, this codex is extremely typical of GW's new direction.  The codex is meant to play as it "should" with less regard (but not NO regard) to whether that happens to be uber powerful or not.

Their obvious focus was to make the hordes more common in games of 40K.  Hordes aren't.  While the Blob squad is the well known break with that, lets face it, even Tyranids don't tend to horde that much, nor do Chaos Daemons and Sisters of Battle don't do it that often either.  Are there exceptions?  Obviously.  But am I wrong?  No.

So one of the most interesting things I noticed BEFORE this codex was just how massively effective Meganobz were.  With that in mind I notice that the Ork codex allows you to ball up 100 orks, of which 10 are Nobz, and roll them like a bowling ball at someones army!  Now having seen the carnage 10 Meganobz can do, this idea has REAL appeal because the ablative wounds of the bowling ball make the MegaArmour unnecessary, really.  Plus you can make their little buddies into Ard Boyz which makes a BIG difference in the power of that bowling ball!

I was very enamoured of this and tried it out just as a what if.  I rolled it across the field to the 22 inch mark on round one.  Because of 4+ armor and cover, I lost just 8 orks from the unit, most of it from exploding trukks I used to cover my approach sicne only the things right in frotn could see us and they were mostly gunning for vehicles.

In round 2 I rolled the bowling ball forward again to the 30 inch mark (2" on the run) and moved another trukk and my only Battle Wagon up for cover.  Here again, lost about 16 orks and the enemy started scattering except the land Raider which held its ground trying to kill the Battle Wagon.

So when I finally hit the enemy with it, in round 3 on a WAAAAAAAAGH, I engulfed the Chaos Space Marines front lines with so many Klaw attacks that at the end of it, there were two dead predators that just couldn't escape, a dead Chaos Space Marine unit, a dead Abaddon and dead Chaos Land Raider plus the orks had the AA gun!!!  Wowa.  WS 5 to the unit (from the Warlord) and like 45 Klaw attacks was more than enough.  At this point the game was essentially over but there were the usual civilities of allowing him his bottom of the third turn to turn it around.

I was expecting pretty good results, but that is just toooooooo many orks to deal with and if you have a way to block lines of sight (and Trukks + BatWagons + Buggies does do a nice job of at least obscuring it) the unit is just like a bowling ball thrown flawlessly at the poor unfortunate wooden pins.

Now certain tournaments will not allow more than one Formation and so at most you'll get one bowling ball and it really is a lot of points.  But is that not the most orky thing you can imagine?  And the fact that its near impossible for the Nobz to get hit until its far too late is simply awesome.  The unit loses none of its essential killing power; and the rest of the army is mostly in charge of advancing and cutting off escape.


19 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. One issue this army might face is the Wyvern tank. Just 2-3 of them are extremely effective against hordes no matter how many models (Four twin-linked S4 AP6 barrage small blast templates per tank that re-roll to wound for 65 points!) But I suppose that's assuming on the day you actually face a Guard player who is fielding a bunch of these tanks...rock paper scissors.

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    1. Right, Wyverns are really good. I think any artillery will help against the Bowling ball. The thing to do I think is really consider making the core of it Ard Boyz? Maybe. Another idea would be to make sure theres enough lootas to round out the army so we can take those things out. Wyvern side armor isnt great and they ARE open topped.

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    2. That is true, I had forgotten they were open topped. Suppose Storm Boyz might do well too against them, considering how far they can move

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    3. You know, Storm Boyz are one thing I didn't get in my orks. I really like their leader guy, Zagstruk.

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    4. It's possible to use lobbas to deal with wiverns as they're barrage too and s5 ain't bad against av10 open-topped.

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    5. I really really like that idea. I already know that artillery is one of those things I need to purchase. It was in my original ork list and I loved having it. Lobbas are a counter-battery answer for Wyverns! Nice call. Wyverns are incredibly powerful. Even one of them can do so much good for your IG force that I am constantly impressed by them. So yes definitely that is a great idea.

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  3. Another thing in favor of stormboyz. As you can WAAAAGH every turn, the guyz basically get enormous charge moves every turn after the first. Making them a 24-27' threat every turn.

    That's 12' movement + 2d6 run + 2d6 charge with 'ere we go. The run is tricky however, and if the enemy ain't that far away from you, i'd not risk loosing extra boyz. But even without their special run, the guyz are allready d6 faster than bikers. And thanks to the fact they're jump infantry, can hide behind blos and move over units and objects for the first 12'.

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    1. Also, don't forget that if you're unlucky with the extra d6 run, you can trigger a ld check.

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    2. However, i'd not spam stormboyz cause of them being very terrain-dependable. 1 squad can hide behind a ruin and jump over it next turn. It's gona be harder to pull the trick with 2 of them. But still possible. While 3 is close to impossible and a squad will just die with no good results. And they cost some points for a pk-bp nob.

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    3. Stormboyz are an art form. Like everything in the Ork Codex, its extremely good when it gets to do what it is meant to do and the trick, as in all Ork builds is how to get them there.

      The added expense of excorting a unit successfully to its appointed task is what always costs the points you dont have. I wonder at what points level you want to start including Storm Boyz... Thoughts?

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    4. I used them in a few games. 1k and 1250. They performed quite well allready.
      I used 10 boyz + pk/bp nob and it cost exactly 139 pts. That's not super-cheap but they've helped me out quite nicely so far. The mobile PK that can charge across half the board is a nice tactical addition to any footslogging army - like mine.

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    5. Got to play with squad size, however.
      Take too much and they're not doing the job cause they're allready too expensive and hard to hide.
      Takke too few and they go down to a round of bolter fire from a nearby tac squad.

      Besides, the dangerous terrain is tricky with numbers. You want the ammount of boyz to minimise your chances to get forced to pass ld if you're unlucky with DT rolls.

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    6. so ultimately at 1850, what are you recommending? How many StormBoyz?

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    7. I'd still take the squad numbering around 10-12. The number of effective squads totally depends on your list and terrain density. If you're sure you will be able to hide 2, nothing preventing you from taking 2. But take note that it's not a spammable unit. It's not a bunch of wagon/trukkboyz. For an average game, i'd just take one squad. 2 Max. But no more.

      The main difference of stormboyz and bikers is that they provide more possibilities for cunning moves and board-controle but the only thing keeping them alive is the way YOU position them. While you can just roll bikers 24' forward and hope for 3+ cover, 4+ armor, BLOS and cover is everything your stormboyz have. And it's not easy to hide larger blobs.

      Another plus of smaller squads is that you can deepstrike them much easier if needed. Sometimes it could be more tactically advantageous to hold a bit and than deepstrike rather than start on board. For example, when you're facing something like a flying circus or multiple knights. Or simply when there's no terrain to hide behind - some players insist on playing in the open field shooting grounds for some reason. You can't do much here but you can still deepstrike somewhere in the enemy backlines and do your stuff there without fear of getting killed beforehand. And possibility to make a 2d6 run move helps here too.

      As for the tiny squads of 5-7 models, i'm not sure bout it, really. Tiny ork units without armor are just too easy to kill with a drive-by unit. Unless that's kommandoes pinned in ruins.

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    8. Actually, i've come up with stormboyz being useful and not total garbage accidentally. I've had a game vs ig with pasknisher and brought a Zaggy formation containing 3 units of 9 stormboyz + nob (2 pk, 1 not) - a total of 31 models. I managed to arrive on 3-d turn when the situation was rather grim for the orkses. While lobbas completely murderised lots of his important infantry, pasknisher with squadronned mates put so much firepower that my footsloggas couldn't effectively advance towards the midboard at all.

      So, stormboyz with Zaggy arrived close to the remaining guards. I made a d6 run to spread. Than after all the ig shooting was finished, just 4-5 stormboyz, wounded Zaggy and 2 pk nobz remained. And by that point, i thought, there was nothing to do bout it cause the main killer were tanks and they were hidden quite well amidst impassable terrain, bauble wraps and things like that so i couldn't have utilised a deepstrike close to them in the first place. And the tanks were ~26-27 away from what's remained of the stormboyz.

      But than i thought...hey, i've got the 2d6 run and WAAAGH! Went 12' over his platoon. Cleaned up the bauble wrap with lobbas, ran 2d6 and made a proper charge towards tanks wrecking all of them! And it changed the course of a game. The guy panicked, forgot about the remaining boyz and shot down stormboyz. Meanwhile, i advanced and took the midboard which eventually won me the game.

      Than i realised that this 26-27' charge is actually in the average range of what stormboyz can do! 12 + 4-8 on average + 5-9 on average. While Zaggy formation felt underwhelming, this charge alone was something interesting to consider. Yep, it's somewhat random and will fail if you roll low on the run and charge. But that's the nature of a dice game. You play with averages. And using stormboyz also requires some deep tactical planning. But ain't this what's the blog about?

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    9. Fantastic point. yes that is exactly what the blog is about. I like it. I think the ork codex contains a LOT that you can use. StormBoyz just aren't seen often enough and it makes them perfect subject matter to discuss here.

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  4. Figured out how to add name =D

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