Come on Hivefleets – it’s time to get the most out of your new fleshy droppods!
So we appear to have come full circle. GW in its wisdom decided to take our Pods away back in January in an otherwise solid Dex. Now, almost a year later, they give us those Pods back…with their own models of course. The models are boss and the rules solid. The rules have been covered thoroughly on the Interweb. I will focus on how we might best use these new units to acquire and consume prey…
Using the Tyrannocyte
Let’s start with the Tyrannocyte. This thing is basically an MC that carries stuff. It moves, shoots, assaults! Well it can’t actually charge, but get it into someones’ face and they will be sorely tempted to give some close combat a go. Not bad for 75 points. It is reasonably durable with 6 wounds and a toughness of 5. Tsk, tsk, tsk…no cheap Instant Death for you enemies of the Hive Mind! No one in their right mind can ignore these things, and will need to invest a fair amount of effort in bringing them down. How then does a Nid player best use these guys? For starters, delivery of otherwise plodding MC brothers would be a reasonable tactic. Now those Dakkafexes can drop in next to anything with armour 12 or less and get back to glancing things to death. This obviously will not work against things like some Necron skimmers or Dreads with armour 13; but there are ways to deal with these. The Dakkafexes can handle most other armoured threats. While the Fexes are plinking away, those Tyrannocytes are pumping out 15 S5 shots each turn. Two Pods, two fexes; that’s 30 S5 shots and 24 twin-linked S6 shots. Now we are talking about more than 400 points here. However, you are also talking about 18 T6 wounds that need to be removed, with no Instant Death from most shooting.
Another equally effective option would be a couple of Exocrines. Here would be a solution to those armour 13 units and 12 plasma shots could really put a dent in someones flank. These little fellas also pack 5 wounds apiece. That’s 20 T6 wounds to burn through. Wait a minute…what about the rest of my army that is racing across the board? An interesting option would be a Swarmlord who now doesn’t have to slog across the board with his Tyrant Guard escort. Drop the Swarmlord in one pod and then 3 Tyrant Guard in another pod nearby. Assuming Swarmy drops in close enough (about 8″), he joins the Guards during the movement phase and presto…6 ablative wounds!
So what about a few other passenger options for our friendly Pods? Hive Guard anyone? Three of these guys pump out 6 S8 shots a turn, ignoring cover and intervening terrain. Bonus; at T6, they are also tough to put down without devoting a fair amount of shooting to. How about a hybrid brood of 20 Termagaunts…10 vanilla and 10 Devilgaunts? That’s 40 S4 shots a turn at close range…30 at 18″. Two Pods full of these lovelies gives a Nid player 80 S4 shots with the right placement. Throw in two of these TGaunt Pods and add another 30 S5 shots…wow! Tau boys, each your heart out!
Worried about Synape? Gotcha covered. Drop in a brood of 3-4 Zoanthropes. Boost them with a Sporocyst. By the way, there should be a friendly Flyrant in the neighborhood by now for a little more Synapse love. With the new Leviathan rules and formations, that Flyrant can take some friends (also know as Gargoyles) for a some Look Out Sir! love. Plenty of Synapse right in your opponents backfield. Throw in a brood of 4-5 Warriors in a Pod and you will never have to worry about your little guys chewing on each other again.
Mastering the Sporocyst
Another effective use of the Sporocyst? Objective denial. This is a T5/W6 model. Figure where your opponent wants to be and gently push this bad boy right into their face! Another example of target priority issues for your opponent. They have to get this thing off the board, but will have to devote a great deal of effort to do so. In the mean time, the rest of your army and maybe another Pod or two will be joining the party. Let’s not forget that this Pod also spits out annoying blobs of Spore Mines every turn.
Two sides to every coin, and in the case of the new Pods, no exception. Each of these without upgrades is 75pts. Moveover, each is about as many dollars, So a complement of 5 Pods will cost about $400 and 375 points! Lots of cash and lots of points. But for the serious Nid player, probably worth it, especially since these new beauties will get plenty of table time. Finally, think about what you are getting for your money…what is essentially five MCs that can put out 15 S5 shots apiece for just 75 points per model. Three Tyrannocysts are equal to the cost of a single Trygon Prime.
Don’t know about you, but I’m down for all this.
Create, Grow, Feed, Adapt
For Russ and the All Father!