Sunday, July 18, 2010

Bloodletters are awesome?

E-mail in:

hey, i lurk all over forums, and i notice you know daemons(40k). i've also looked at 'yes the truth hurts.' last time i played 40k was 4th edition demonhunters. and now the thought of chaos demons is really appealing. though i get the 'vibe' that bloodletters suck , but for me thats the most aesthetic part of a demons army, a horde of little letters, after all, arent they the archetypal western image of a demon?. so knowing that slowness and flaw of that i present a list. i saw stelek's demon calvary but honestly, i dont dig the fleshound models at all, plus they're expensive. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1500pts/1500pts list
Headquarters-190
Herald of Tzeentch w/ Chariot; Bolt of Tzeentch-95
Herald of Tzeentch w/ Chariot; Bolt of Tzeentch-95

Elite-570
6 Fiends w/ Unholy Might-190
6 Fiends w/ Unholy Might-190
6 Fiends w/ Unholy Might-190

Troops-640
10 Bloodletters-160
10 Bloodletters-160
10 Bloodletters-160
10 Bloodletters-160

Heavy Support
Demon Prince w/ Gaze-100

-------------------------------------------------- 1950pts/2000pts (this one is obviously 50pts short)

Headquarters-380
Herald of Tzeentch w/ Chariot; Bolt of Tzeentch-95
Herald of Tzeentch w/ Chariot; Bolt of Tzeentch-95
Herald of Tzeentch w/ Chariot; Bolt of Tzeentch-95
Herald of Tzeentch w/ Chariot; Bolt of Tzeentch-95

Elite-570
6 Fiends w/ Unholy Might-190
6 Fiends w/ Unholy Might-190
6 Fiends w/ Unholy Might-190

Troops-800
10 Bloodletters-160
10 Bloodletters-160
10 Bloodletters-160
10 Bloodletters-160
10 Bloodletters-160

Heavy Support-200
Demon Prince w/ Gaze-100
Demon Prince w/ Gaze-100

- i notice plaguebearers are a popular choice for troops, but i really like the idea of pro-active troops... actually just bloodletters. the demon princes are... bare. i cant really see the use in spending anything on them (other than gaze) really, the 160pts tzeentch-ian bolt prince is ass-expensive, plus i got 4 bolts, the 4+ save is cool... but not 25pts of cool. iron hide, now that one is funny. the gaze is a thing to day while on the way to CC... if he makes it there (he's on land raider duty)

- is the "bloodletters core" doomed to rapid fire failure? i mean the few that "may" survive will carry power weapons and probably never get furious charge, while hounds are WS4 and dont have grenades either, dont have powerweapons, but are fast and can stay out of rapid fire range

-balanced and even waves, i dont want to risk it.

- thoughts?
Bloodletters aren't bad.  WS5, Furious Charge, power weapons and multiple attacks is great for an assaulty unit.  Anything they touch dies.  Problem is, they only have T4 and a 5++ and move as infantry.  Their lack of speed and durability really relegates them to mop up or distraction duty.  However, they excel in mopping up.  Use Fiends, Sheralds, Hounds and other mobile units to weaken, harass, slow down enemy units and hit them with Bloodletters to finish the job.  That's how Stelek uses his and how I use them when I field them now and again.

The only reason Bloodletters don't get used as much is simply because other units can fill their roles either cheaper or with more flexibility.  Plaguebearers are popular because they are cheap and incredibly durable.  You can take 2-4 minimum sized units and have scoring units covered while spending only a handful of points.  Very efficient.  Hounds are more similar to Fiends than Bloodletters, relying on speed and weight of attacks to crack open armor and drag down enemy units.  Using Chaos Hounds instead of the metal doglizards is a good way to save a few bucks. 

Now, as for the lists themselves.

The 1500 looks fine, it's got mobility and shooty.  The Prince doesn't really fit in though.  T5 and 5++ is not very tough and only Daemonic Gaze is not much shooty.  I'd just pick up another Tzerald instead, your army is all T4 anyway.  Used en masse, Bloodletters can make for good area denial, similar to what Crushers can do.  Nobody want to get close to them (unless they have flamers and a metal box to hide in) so you can hem your opponent to help the faster stuff.

2000 is similar, plenty of good bits with random DPs thrown in.  DPs should either have Bolt and help you with shooting, or grab wings and smash faces.  4++ is a leg up from 5++, and Bolt makes all the difference in the world.  Only 4 S8 AP1 shots is not awesome anti-tank, so you really do need all the help you can get in that area.  Land Raiders aren't scared by walking DPs, especially only S5 DPs.  They outmaneuver you or can just blow them away since they're so fragile for MCs.  Considering your army is entirely medium T units, having a few big beaters to suck up all the heavy weapons is a good way to make target priority easier for your opponent.  Instead, either upgrade the DPs to be extra tank busters, or pick up a unit of Hounds with Karanak to give you more mobility.  Seekers are an option too.

The Bloodletter core isn't a bad idea, it's just expensive and slow.  Like any other Daemon army, you rely on your Fiends and Bolts to suppress and slow down enemy mech while you move in for the kill.  50 Bloodletters are hard to kill and can be used as area denial and mop up, works fine for me if you have the proper tools to shut down enemy mobility.

For waves, I'd advise 1 shooty and 1 fighty.  Shooty wave drops in, blasts armor and sets up charges.  Fighty brings in Fiends to set up turn 2 assaults.  This way each wave is good in its own way and you aren't screwed if you get the secondary.  Taking 2 half armies is inadvisable because each half army isn't made to work together and is often just 1 of each important unit, making target priority easier.

Hope that helps.

6 comments:

Brent said...

The author of the email has obviously done his homework! Good letter.

And good reply, as always.

I've been playing my Bolt'n'Beast Daemons army as my primary competitive army for 9 months now, and I've won most of the tournaments I've played in. I'm taking it to BoLSCon in a few weeks, so wish me luck.

I actually am coming around to the idea that Plaguebearers are too static. The problem is, they do what they're supposed to very, very well - better than almost anything in the game, in fact.

But how many do you need? I switched out two of my units for two Horrors w Bolt.

Obviously for the two extra Bolts, hoping one will hit each round.

I think it was the right move, but we'll see.

Chumbalaya said...

Yay for Daemons, yay for Brent.

Lemme know how the Horrors do, it's no secret how much of a fan of them I'm not :P

I usually just take the 4x5 PBs and call it good. More points for stuff that's actually good. 2x5 PBs and 2x 10 Bletters or 'nettes is a possibility too, depending on my mood. PBs are just too good to pass up for an objective holder.

Brother Loring said...

Nice musings Mr Chumb. I really need to learn more about the little nasties. Hope these keep coming.

Mercer said...

The Pick of Destiny!

Stefan said...

hey, thanks for looking it over.

- i think i'll take your advice, remove the princes, add 2x11-hounds, and switch the tzeentch-heralds to sheralds at 75pts each, that comes to 2k even, plus the $30 "lord of slaanesh" model makes an awesome chariot... though, i suppose it swings the wave to a more 'balanced' split

Chumbalaya said...

Oh, the boobworm? Very cool idea.

Lemme know how it works out for you.