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Goatboy 40k: I Like to Punch People

5 Minute Read
Apr 11 2010


Goatboy here again, just wanting to chat about assault and how it affects the game.

I personally like heavy assault armies. If you haven’t noticed, most of my lists mix some kind of assault element with a bit of shooting. I know shooting helps you win the game, but if my army can’t throw a haymaker at your face, then I won’t be enjoying the game. So the question I have, is that an assault army a better choice overall for the tournament scene?

Lets look at the bonuses of Assault based army.

No Cover Saves
There is no such thing as a cover save from a fist. This is a pretty important thing as one of the ways you can help survive some serious gun pounding is to go to ground while you are in cover. You still contest/score the objective and you make the opponent spend a lot more resources to get rid of your unit. Some armies even get to abuse this by having a rule that lets them jump up after hiding in the bushes too. Assaulting them takes that advantage away. If you have weapons that ignore armor then you can normally guarantee multiple wounds to hopefully kill the unit.

Avoid Enemy Fire (with some luck and planning)
When you stay in assault you get to be nicely saved from massed anti infantry fire. This is a big advantage that a lot of experienced players will take to their advantage. When you move to assault, if you can throw the Powerfist/Power Weapon guy at a vehicle that will be a big help to hopefully stay in combat after you throw the dice with your normal guys. I have won many a game by having my fist guy not start the combat assaulting the initial squad and instead throw his attacks at the 12 inch moving vehicle.

Wipe Outs
You also have a good chance of wiping out complete enemy units, with little need to roll multiple attacks from your army. If you have a decent assault unit, you will most likely crush any type of non assault unit. If they run and you catch them, then you have basically removed a complete threat with little loss on your own. Even if they get away, if you get a chance to stay within 6 you get to push that fleeing unit back too. This deals with the scoring enemy remnants issue that shooting armies often face.

Hustle Soldier!!!
Another advantage of an assault style army, is that you get extra movement too with all that running, assaulting and consolidation going on. This is great when you can either move towards and objective or pull someone off an objective. I have won a lot of games when I just got into assault and pulled a bunch of guys to my fist pumping party and leave the shiny happy objective alone. Just getting a chance to move more than 6 + d6 is a great way to cover the board, especially on those objective mission games.

Table Em!
You mix all these advantages and you get an army that has a great chance to completely massacre your opponent too. With ways to annihilate squads as well as cover massive bits of the board you usually have an army that will have a good chance of just leaving a ton of smoldering corpses on the battlefield in way a gunline rarely does. Of course this power does come at some severe disadvantages.

There Are Some Side-effects…
If you are playing versus a highly mobile army (pointy earred, tight pants wearing jerky Eldar) they will control most of the game. They will control what you get to hit by spreading out and making your army work too hard to try and do their job. Thinning out your assault punch is a great way to win against these armies. Also a massed vehicle list can be a problem too because of the need to roll better then average against those moving vehicles to create the advantage you need with your fists of doom. Also, a smart player will reserve their army and create a flank that they can use to punish and pound you as you try to get near.

This is why I usually mix an army most of the time. I like the strong assault element that can crush things quickly and the smaller support shooting element to hopefully limit the return fire my fist pumpers might face after doing what they do best. This also lets me have some counter assault elements versus other assault heavy lists too. I also personally like the interaction assault normally has since both players normally get rolls to try and hurt each other.


Sample List:  Blood Angels Bring the Pain
Here is my current Blood Angels build towards list. It is something of a more area tactical army with some assault elements. Will see if my normal build towards adding strong assault elements comes into effect.

BA: Mixed list with things I want to play Version 1.01

HQ: Librarian, Jump Pack (Unleash Rage, Blood Lance)
Elites: Furioso Dreadnought, Librarian, (Wings of Sanguinus, 5+ Cover Save Power)
Elites: Furioso Dreadnought, Librarian, (Wings of Sanguinus, 5+ Cover Save Power)
Elites: Sanguinary Priest, Jump Pack, Power Weapon
Troops: Death Company (6), Power Weapon x 3, Razorback, TWL Hvy Flamer
Troops: Death Company Dreadnought, Blood Talons
Troops: Assault Squad (5), Meltagun, Razorback, TWL Assault Cannon
Troops: Assault Squad (5), Flamer, Power Fist, Razorback, TWL Hvy Flamer
Troops: Assault Squad (5), Flamer, Power Fist, Razorback, TWL Hvy Flamer
Troops: Assault Squad (10), Meltagun X 2, Powerfist
FA: Baal Predator
FA: Baal Predator
Heavy: Vindicator

Pts: 2000 – To make it 1850 you could drop a Assault squad and fit it right at under 1850.

I went with a flamer heavy list as a way to be more aggressive with the list. I want to get in and get to business. The drop squad is designed to go get a far objective as needed, as well as give you some needed pinpoint vehicle control. I went with the psychic powers set up as I feel they are the most interactive and fun. We all know how crazy Fear the Darkness can be and this type of list could lay down 3 of them. I think it isn’t that fun of a power, as some armies will just ignore it while others will be crushed by being scared of spooky shadows. Watching an army run away is not that much fun.

The two Dreadnoughts have the Shield as you can cast it during your opponents turn, thus letting you jump around like a fool and still get some kind of hope when the melta gets mad at you. My Death Company is my assault unit that can hopefully hurt some people. I am tempted to run a Super Chaplain in there and change the Razorback to a Rhino but will see what testing does for me. The Vindicators and Baal Predators are going to hide in reserves and hopefully come out to scare the crap out of the opponent later. I think the Flamestorm cannon might be worth it too, so will see.

So what do you think of Assault and how it fits into your own game plan for your army? Questions, shoot me an email to [email protected]. Look for Goat Angels popping up on my blog soon as I finish more of them. The jump pack assault squad is done I just need to photograph it up.


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