Friday, June 12, 2009

Tyranids in Capture and Control

Last night I played a 1k game against Space marines, the game was Capture and Control with Dawn of War deployment. The objectives were on opposite ends of the table. I took an experimental no-Genestealer list. My goal was to field as many bodies as I could, as many monstrous creatures as I could and to capitalize on the new and improved Deathspitters. Here's what I took:

Dakka Tyrant with Psychic Scream
Tyrant Guard
5 Warriors with talons and Deathspitters
17 Termagaunts
17 Termagaunts
16 Hormagaunts
1 Sniperfex
1 Talon/Barbed Strangler fex

My foe took (as far as I remember):

1 Chaplain leading an assault squad
2x Tactical squads with flamers and plasma cannons
2x scout squads
1 Dreadnaught in a drop pod

He dropped the Dreadnaught on my objective in the first turn and marched his assault squad on, wiping out my Hormagaunts who only inflicted 2 casualties in return. The next turn I shot up the 'naught with my Warriors and Sniperfex. Took me two turns of shooting to drop it. My gaunts were held in reserve and marched on around turn 3, and went into a mad dash to reach their objective as I realized my fatal mistake. The game ended on turn 6 and if I had one more turn I would have reached his objective. He only had 3 scouts left on the table and they held the objective for a draw.

This is a common situation in Capture and Control; I played a game against Daemons where he only had 3 Daemonettes guarding his objective with everything else dead but I just couldn't reach his objective. I have also lost 90% of my force but prevented my opponent from contesting my objective by surrounding it with a mass of gaunts. Can't kill 'em all!

While thinking about this I came to the mistakes in my plan. Since Tyranids have no transports we have to rely on footsloggers. In a game where the objectives are at opposite ends, you have to make your decisions in the deployment phase instead of pulling a Fritz (last turn turboboosting jetbikes to contest objectives). For Tyranids, we have choices that can handle this, here's what I think the best options are.

Flyrant: Big and expensive, also very fragile. He can deep strike or fly around and contest. I don't think he's the best option because of his expense and fragility.

Leaping Warriors: Since they don't have fleet it is probably not the best option to use them in this capacity. Sure they can charge 12" but in my opinion they are best delegated to shooting.

Outflanking Broodlord/Genestealers: Probably the best option. However, the chubby Broodlord can't fleet so make sure he is used with caution. Regular Genestealers outflanking are fantastic- the only caveat is to make sure you take multiple broods. Outflanking relies on luck and if you roll poorly you'll be a long ways from home. Stealers are still our best option as they are fast, T4, and can utterly destroy a unit guarding an objective. Make sure they have a follow-up brood in case things don't go your way.

Hormagaunts: Very fast, but fragile. If you use them they need to be supported (especially because most of the time a 12" charge will take them out of synapse range). Lictors make great support because of Feeder Tendrils, but more on them later.

Regular Gaunts: If you can get them there without them dying on the way. They're best for holding home objectives and just getting in the way. If you plan on using them to take the objective they need to start on the table, not in reserve (which was my mistake).

Lictors: A chancy choice. If they appear too early they won't do much good as they'll be killed before turn 5, but if they appear late they will probably work very well, depending on what's guarding the objective. I have had low success using one, I think in future lists I will try and run a pair to see if that improves their chances, along with trying to get some other broods in CC with them as well to benefit from Feeder Tendrils.

Raveners: Fast charge but very fragile. If they deep strike they are vulnerable for a turn. If you go with them, multiples are the way to go.

Gargoyles: Probably an excellent choice, but they are so expensive! I don't actually own any for that reason. Plus I hear they are very top-heavy. Rumor has it they'll be made in plastic but I'm not holding my breath. For now I will deal without them.

These are the units I feel stand somewhat of a chance at seizing the objective in Capture and Control. But first and foremost, it comes down to your deployment. Had I put my Termagaunts on the table at the beginning they could have reached the objective. I had my Carnifexes acting as fire magnets, but I just didn't have enough time to reach his flag. Keep the objectives in mind, not just killing everything that moves.


  1. I've had the same experience with regular gaunts just getting waxed. S3, T3, 6+ is just NOT going to cut it against virtually anything. They're not bad as a wall unit giving you cover saves, but not that great against anyone that wants a piece of them.

    Warriors with Deathspitters are nasty; I've cranked out a crap-ton of firepower with such a brood before and it's ALWAYS fun to watch them whip a bunch of S6 seed pods at the other guy. The only problem is that the brood COULD be a couple of monstrous creatures.

    I hear you on 'nid claiming. It IS an issue, and you hit it on the head: you've got to plan that in advance. I've seen some folks think in terms of Without Number gaunts sitting in the back, ready to always move on and sit on the objective.

    Of course, you don't always have to claim the objective; if you just have more tha nthe other guy you're fine.

    I gotta agree with you on the Flyrant. well, a flyrant isn't FRAGILE (T6, four wounds, 3+ save is not fragile, 10 guardsman in the open with 5+ saves are fragile) but a lone flyrant is not that hard to wax.

    Gargoyles...if I were gonna use 'em, I'd find a way to convert 'em from regular fleshborer gaunts. There's no way i'm dropping $7-8 on a guy when I need to take 10-20 of 'em.

    I disagree with you on outflanking. Use of sacrifical units, or unit placement, can nullify the times you outflank successfully. Lictors can get you in when you need to be in, but can't get you in WHERE you need to be in.

    Additionally, Lictors really aren't such hot stuff any more since they changed Rending and the way close combat works. I think they're better off trying to tackle vehicles, m'self.

    I think Raveners would be worth looking into as proxies; they have the speed and in a pinch you should be able to convert 'em from warrior kits. If the enemy ignores 'em? PAIN and SUFFERING.

    I also wonder what's with the Psychic Scream on the Tyrant in your list...just as an aside, one scream doesn't seem to be worth it. -1ld is a pain and all, but it's only when it's cumulative that it becomes a real problem.

    Congrats on the lessons; the education in the loss is plenty important (...I should well know; I have become more intelligent by a few times this week.)

  2. Thanks for your comments. You're right, the psychic scream really doesn't belong. I had a few spare points and decided to throw it on him. I should have scraped up 5 more points and used it to put an extra wound on the carnifex. While it did cause him to fail one leadership test that he would have passed otherwise, they were marines and regrouped right away. If that extra wound was on the carnifex he wouldn't have died and could have possibly killed the remaining 3 scouts.

    I think I will give Raveners a try. I'll proxy a sizeable unit next game and see how they go.

  3. Yeah, with a 'fex, I think the wound is the first stop on the defensive upgrades. I'd maybe consider the T6 to T7 after that, since it'll mess up S6-8 weapons.

    I think a lot of folks don't give Raveners a lot of credit, but they DO have blinding speed. Beasts have a hell of a charge range (6" + Fleet + 12" Charge)and with Rending, they're 40 points a head.


Related Posts:

Related Posts with Thumbnails