40k Challenge – The Ultimate Drop-pod Army



I want to build a highly competitive drop pod army and I want your help. Put on your thinking caps 40K fanatics and follow along!



Let me share with you my current thought process regarding the challenge. The last time I played a drop pod army was the Blood Angels third edition codex and I think it was pretty good. Note that I am open to double FOC and allied SM detachments. It must be 100 percent Space Marine.

Here are my current thoughts:

Blood Angels
• Free drop pods for assault squads with two special weapons.
• Corbulo.
• Dreadnaughts with frag cannons.
• Grey Knights have taken a big hit on the power curve which ups the ante a bit again for this Chapter.

Crimson Fists with Pedro Kantor
• You can’t go wrong with scoring Sternguard (if only they counted as troops).

Salamanders
• Vulkan’s special rules plus Chapter tactics.

Space Wolves
• Rune Priests dropping JotWW.
• Arjac with Wolf Guard terminators.
• Grey Hunters… Two special weapons and Wolf Standard.

Ultramarines
• Tigurius screams to me drop pods… Warlord Trait, psychic powers and Chapter Tactics.

These I think are the best choices. Did I miss anything (e.g., Imperial Fists) ?


At first I tried to come up with an Ultramarine|Dark Angels list using a Deathwing contingent but their rules for allied detachments and Deathwing assault is very restrictive. So I decided to switch over to Space Wolves for my allies and have received some good feedback. It is somewhat elite and has a rather small number of units but I tend to like that type of army. Here is the 2000 point list:

Ultramarines

HQ: Chief Librarian Tigurius

Techmarine
Servo-Harness + Power Axe

Elite: Sternguard Veteran Squad
7x Sternguard Veteran
4x Combi-Meltagun x4 40 + 2x Heavy Flamer
Veteran Sergeant
Melta Bombs + Grav-pistol + Grav-pistol
Drop Pod

Troops: Tactical Squad
9x Tactical Marine
Plasma gun + Multi-melta
Veteran Sergeant
Melta Bombs + Combi-Plasmagun
Drop Pod

Tactical Squad
9x Tactical Marine
Plasma gun + Multi-melta
Veteran Sergeant
Melta Bombs + Combi-Plasmagun
Drop Pod

Space Wolves

HQ: Logan Grimnar

Troops: Wolf Guard Pack
Arjac Rockfist
Terminator Wolf Guard, Power Axe  + Storm Shield
Terminator Wolf Guard, Power Axe  + Storm Shield
Terminator Wolf Guard, Storm Shield + Power Fist
Drop Pod

HQ: Rune Priest, Runic Armor

Troops: Grey Hunters Pack
x10 Grey Hunter
Wolf Standard + 2x Plasmagun + Plasma Pistol + Power Axe
Drop Pod 



Here is my second list which is pure Ultramarine:

HQ: Marneus Calgar, Armour of Antilochus

HQ: Chief Librarian Tigurius

Techmarine, + Servo-Harness + Auspex

Honour Guard
Chapter Champion,
4x Honour Guard
Drop Pod

Elite: Sternguard Veteran Squad
8x Sternguard Veteran, + Combi-Meltagun x4 + Heavy Flamer x2
Veteran Sergeant, + Melta Bombs + Grav-pistol + Grav-pistol
Drop Pod

Troops: Tactical Squad
9x Tactical Marine, Plasma gun + Multi-melta
Veteran Sergeant, Melta Bombs + Power Axe
Drop Pod

Troops: Tactical Squad
9x Tactical Marine, Plasma gun + Multi-melta
Veteran Sergeant, Melta Bombs + Power Axe
Drop Pod

Troops: Tactical Squad
9x Tactical Marine, Plasma gun + Multi-melta
Veteran Sergeant, Melta Bombs + Power Axe
Drop Pod

Troops: Scout Squad (6#, 105 pts)
 4x Scout, shotguns
 Sergeant, Shotgun + Melta Bombs
 Land Speeder Storm, Heavy Flamer

Fast Attack: Stormtalon Gunship, Twin-Linked Lascannon

Drop Pod Tactics
So we will wrap this up with a few thoughts on how to best exploit a drop pod army versus the more competitive builds – Eldar and Tau I am looking at you.

First obviously the more drop pods in the army then potentially more powerful the alpha strike. If you look at my first list it is not really that many. The second list only has six. Something to keep in mind is that both Marneus and Tigurius buff Ultramarines which is why I am interested in this approach as well. I am actually more interested in controlling board area and not getting tabled by the third turn. I think the biggest challenge is versus Eldar Wave Serpent spam… they will maintain a safe range, shoot the crap out of you then go for the late game objective grabs… obviously going first against such an army is a huge advantage but at best is 50 percent. You will notice the second list has a couple of units to help deal with Eldar mobility.

Tau I believe on the other hand are much more vulnerable. The main concern with Tau is their intercepting units which has caused a lot of concern in general for drop podding but they can be mitigated such as dropping right next to an enemy unit and placing your models one inch way from theirs to discourage the pie plates of doom.



So let me know what you think about both lists. I would like to see what you are running and what is working for you. I find this a challenging project!  Get me some good feedback because I’ve got models to buy!

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