Black Blow Fly here to show you how to get the absolute best out of your Deathwatch Veterans – post Chapter Approved.
Hello Chapter Approved Changes
So the new Chapter Approved 2018 has costed the basic stormshield for non-characters at only 2 points per model… Deathwatch Veterans can take them for every vet that’s not a gunner (for example the Deathwatch Frag Cannon). The stormshield was 5 points per model and that’s quite significant – you can basically take twice as many stormshields now, or three now for less than the cost of two prior.
It’s really good but I reckon it’s not really worth going totally storm bolters and stormshields. I don’t want to invest more than 220 points per Veteran Squad and like to have units of seven for robustness.
The Old Veterans Build
Here’s my most current basic build pre Chapter Approved 2018:
Watch Sergeant – Storm Bolter & Power Axe
Black Shield – Stormshield & Power Axe
2x Veteran – Stormshield & Storm Bolter
Veteran Gunner – Deathwatch Frag Cannon
Veteran Gunner – Infernus Heavy Bolter
Terminator – Power Axe & Storm Bolter
Tips & Tricks
Note that the Sergeant is optional and I like to field them for the theme. This squad comes in right under 220 points prior to Chapter Approved. If you go all storm bolters and stormshields plus one terminator to soak wounds from enemy small arms fire power it’s a lot of points saved, however Veteran squads are very elite excelling at both melee and shooting – why not enjoy the best of both worlds? The Black Shield grants the squad Heroic Intervention which catches a lot of people off guard… the goal is to eliminate the charging enemy unit that turn so they can shoot again the next turn, thereby eliminating wasting points on taking a Vanguard Veteran.
Power axes (AP2) wound T8 on a 5+ and that’s as good as it gets with decent armor penetration and still hitting on 3+. Some prefer the power maul for One less point but it’s only AP1 so not as reliable, plus for Marines you are wounding on 5+ at best against anything T5 and above without burning precious command points on a strategem.
This squad can use the stratagem Tempest Shell to inflict D3 mortal wounds on an enemy vehicle and another D3 mortal wounds via the Infernus Heavy Bolter via the strategem Hellfire round… you’re looking at 2-6 mortal wounds versus a Knight which tend to be a problem for Deathwatch. This squad also has excellent overwatch capability with the two template weapons (Deathwatch Frag Cannon and Infernus Heavy Bolter) plus the latter functions like a twin lascannon at half range which is reliable using the Teleportarium strategem or Angelus Beacon relic, again providing good offense versus Knights and enemy armor in general.
In conclusion the storm bolter with Special Issue Amunition wounding non vehicle enemy units on 2+ (Hellfire rounds) is excellent at quickly clearing enemy chaff and screens plus it can wallop high toughness enemy units as well … but you really only need so much of a good-great thing. I prefer versatility and a plethora of tactical options rather than only being able to hammer one type of nail and Deathwatch Veterans have a gigantic toolbox, so why not use it ?
~Suffer not the Xenos to Live