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Author Topic: What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?  (Read 3142 times)

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Offline Talon Undecided

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What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?
« on: February 2, 2015, 01:24:33 AM »
Let's talk it.

(These observations arise from my local gaming scene, I apologise if these do not happen in your local games scene :x)

In the past year or so since the Astra Militarum codex was released, we have seen many different styles of Imperial Guard lists being played. The release of Imperial Knights a few months before provided the Imperial Guard with a mechanical punch that didn't exist before - one that could easily take down dedicated assault units that threatened the gunlines (the effectiveness of which got dumbed down somewhat by the D-Weapon changes, but eh, I saw it as a balance tbh). The Tank Commander HQ option saw a pseudo-Armoured Company, with Commander Pask in a Punisher supported by Executioners become a common sight. Oddly enough I didn't see a mechanised company appearing, I had thought that the Taurox was ridiculous for it's points cost.

The alternative was the sea of men supported by a singing Priest, with perhaps a Dark Angels Power Field Generator that just tied down anything that the guns couldn't blow up. People were still playing infantry companies, seas of men supported by big guns like Heavy Artillery Carriages (did you know those things don't actually have to point at the target that they're firing at? Madness!) I have seen Infantry Companies with a Dark Angels detachment o'er here, the PFG was too good for a blob that could re-roll its saves.

One thing was for sure, Vendettas all but disappeared, the reduced troop capacity does not help in building lists for them at all.

The one list that I did not see are D-99 Drop Troops. Sure, it was a Forgeworld army and an expensive one to boot, but I saw in it the good ol' Drop Troops Doctrine of 3rd Edition - this is a list that I am eager to build and play. Raining men down upon the opponent, all of them sporting some form of melta / plasma weaponry, supported by airborne elements such as Vultures and Vendettas, as well as Drop Sentinels. The flexibility in deployment could prove valuable in securing objectives in a Maelstrom of War, and being able to do an alpha strike on the opponent's key units can cripple the opponent before he has a chance to react.

I've not had much experience in this edition's ruleset, so I am curious as to what everyone is playing today and how effective your lists are. Do you field Allies? Which Allies? Who are your Warlords? How do you fare against the other powerhouses? How do you kill a Knight? Do you leave it alone or tarpit it down?
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Re: What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?
« Reply #1 on: February 4, 2015, 04:10:54 AM »
Right now I'm looking to build a Militarum Tempestus Company.  I got the big box of them over Christmas (which they don't do any more dag nab it) and I'm planning to build a ground and air assault formation (command squad, 3 scion squads, and 4 Taurox Primes/Valkyries).  I've yet to finish them so I don't have any gaming experience with them yet but I do think Tempestus Scions are a monumental improvement over the old Stormtroopers in both rules and models. 

If I was to run allies with them I'd definitely take an Inquisitor.  They can bring some much need Physic backup, and servo skulls are very useful for deep striking armies.  I've also got some Space Marine Scouts I might run with them for fluff reasons more than anything.  My Warlord would probably be the Tempestor Prime though, as I think his Warlord Traits would be more useful than any Inquisitional ones.

I still see Vendettas (made by sticking marine issue twin linked lascannons onto a Valk's wings) flying around as anti-air security, and honestly the reduced transport capacity was only fair.  They're still very useful but now at least the Valkyries have a real purpose too.
« Last Edit: February 4, 2015, 04:14:54 AM by Land Rover Tangi »

Offline Ludo

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Re: What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2015, 01:23:10 AM »
I run a large blob of guardsmen with artillery (wyvern) and grey knight support in the form of the nemesis strike force. It forms a great static backfield element while the grey knights deep strike and cause mayhem. A blob with a level 3 librarian with divination, some priests, and melta bombs is a great way to take down knight titans.  I've also had great luck taking them out using a vendetta.

I don't see very many people playing guard these days. I don't think they are the strongest codex on their own.
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Re: What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?
« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2015, 12:25:27 PM »
I don't see very many people playing guard these days. I don't think they are the strongest codex on their own.

Really?  I thought Guard were a very strong force in their own right?  They were back in 5th ed., but thing's may have changed. 

The Militarum Tempestus however? They definitely need allied back up.

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Re: What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?
« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2015, 11:05:33 PM »
Maelstrom of War renders Guard pretty impotent when it comes to about one-third of their objectives...

... I don't fancy being able to issue challenges or getting to opponent back lines efficiently enough.
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Offline Spectral Arbor

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Re: What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?
« Reply #5 on: February 28, 2015, 11:34:45 PM »
My experience with Guard is that they're too slow for 7th edition. Even ignoring Maelstrom [I only have one friend that plays them at all, and we typically only play Maelstrom 1/3 or 1/4 games] they're SOoooo much slower than Marines [Bikes and Pods] Eldar, Tau [Sit'n'shoot Tau are for suckas] Dark Eldar, 'Nids, GK... uh... absolutely everyone, really.

The changes to mission setups mean you can't guarantee that you'll have objectives in your deployment zone. If you can't guarantee that, you MUST move out to claim them, and Guard shooting pretty much falls to pieces once you move. Things that don't fall apart, probably don't want to be closer to the opposition than absolutely required. So you wind up in a lose-lose situation where you either build fully mobile armies that are less mobile and less shooty than other codices [with vastly inferior CC] or you accept that a mission may be straight up twice as difficult for you to accomplish because you need to move away from your deployment zone because there aren't any objectives in it. Build an army with some mobile, some sit'n'shoot, and then kick yourself because your defence line with shooty blobs and artillery don't have an objective to hold. Pray that a couple of Vet Squads in Chimera with a Bird and Squad don't receive the entirety of your opponent's firepower / assault [they will] and then just shrug your shoulders because there isn't a powerful strategy in the codex that works in 7th.

They have powerful units, but they don't create win conditions. I have objective secured on my Vets, hooray! Except they get murderated by Thunderwolf Cav, and then the TWC score that objective. Poopers.

We used to be able to anchor an area of the board, to provide cover fire to advancing units. If the advance was squashed, we could still hypothetically hold our own objective/s to make a game of it, trying to kill off key enemy units to deny scoring. That doesn't work anymore.

The trouble with allies, outside of Knights, is that you wind up building a list, then realizing that you'd be better off taking more and more allies, until you don't have any Guard left. :( It happened to me. You get in a situation where Guard have good sit'n'shoot, so you use them for that and you use your allies to go out and grab the objectives... but a few games go by, and you realize that the Guard are good at shooting and killing, but really bad at winning the game, so you take a little less, and a little less... and you do better and better until you stop playing them competitively.

I still pull them out sometimes, but it's more for nostalgia's sake. I've tried fully Mech'd, and it worked the best. I take a Valk and Vendetta for mobility / flyer defence. A slow rolling anchor [6" a turn, while my opposition moves 12, then boosts, or assaults, or just flies around] and I fire as I roll. My faster moving opposition flanks me, opens the Chimerae, assaults the dudes and then it's pretty much over. Krak grenades in assault start tearing the asses out of my Russes ['cause they hit rear armour, LOL!] and I usually lose by an objective. If my Valk doesn't get shot down, I tend to be able to get my Vets to an uncontested objective late game, and if the game ends turn 5/6 they have a decent chance to hold on. I've not won a single game that went to turn 7, in 7th edition. Ob Sec means jack amphetamine parrot on Guardsmen. There's no reason to play Battleforged with them, other than it's a habbit and my group frowns on Unbound... for good reason.

If I build my old style of Hybrid lists, I do well if I happen to wind up with an objective in my deployment zone, or Kill points 'cause I just turtle up and hope the game ends turn 5. They aren't as fun to play, because you're always vulnerable. Things are moving so fast now that the cardboard armour on the side of the Chims gets torn up. And then you get shredded in the open. People may hate on bolters, but they still do the business to Guardsmen that get explosively ejected from their rides.

I take a lot of dozer blades, and actively plow through terrain now to get some kind of save for my tanks.


So, as the cool kids say...

TL;DR - Mechanized, with a pair of Flyers, for best results at 1500 to 1850 points.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2015, 11:36:27 PM by Spectral Arbor »

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Re: What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?
« Reply #6 on: March 1, 2015, 09:49:29 AM »
@ SA

All that makes for some depressing reading.  :(

We have always been too slow though.  Which is what you get when you have walkers as FA.  However, we do have Scions in their Taurox Primes.  Them and Hellhounds might make good forward claimers.

Offline Spectral Arbor

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Re: What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?
« Reply #7 on: March 1, 2015, 04:55:20 PM »
I have not previously felt we were too slow, as defensive strategies could create viable win conditions in previous rule sets. I also feel that the game has gotten faster on the whole, while we're still the same speed we've always been. "Fast" units used to move 24" in a turn. Now flyers can move, what? 36" in the Movement phase and another 24" in the Shooting phase, unless they're Supersonic and then they can move 36" again. High end movement has increased 3 times from where it used to be.

Where 5th favoured Close Combat, and 6th favoured shooting, 7th rewards movement. Guard doesn't do that well. I hate to say it, but we have a good codex for the wrong edition.

Full disclosure, I'm unhappy with Late 6th / 7th edition on the whole. It has introduced many things that I don't like, while removing much that I did. Maybe I'm just stuck in my ways, and not liking the rapidly changing landscape of the game I very much enjoy.

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Re: What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?
« Reply #8 on: March 2, 2015, 07:03:48 PM »
I found that I couldn't replicate my old successes, and I think Spectral Arbor put it rather succinctly.

Maelstrom of War is a tournament standard in my area, but to make up for it (somewhat) Forgeworld lists and units are tournament legal as well. As such, I have been looking into the D-99 lists to provide me the same hard-hittin, first strike advantage the old Drop Troops used to have as well as give me some much-needed mobility to contest / control multiple objectives.

It became a rock-paper-scissors game. In theory, the list will destroy any armies that rely on key units (save Deathstar ones) as lynchpins i.e. Riptides / Wraithknights, but it will also die out to lists that focus on objective scoring i.e. Lictorshame.

The D-99 also suffers from "first-turn-no-models" (self named), where you could lose the game because your deployed forces get wiped out before the reserves come in. I noticed that the 4th Place winner in the Las Vegas Open countered this by fielding Veterans in Space Wolf Drop Pods (which have to arrive on turn one - a good thing). But that just corroborates with SA's earlier point of Allies taking over a Guard list.
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Offline Packetmaster

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Re: What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2015, 09:02:49 PM »
I always played some sort of list that like to be mid-field, with a back field elements. I still struggle in maelstorm missions because I always have to be head to toe with faster stronger CC units, but with forge world I feel that, I didn't lose much. I absolutly love my hades breaching drill. They combine so well with Wyverns. (Wyverns clear an area of infantry, The drill and "Vets squad" finish any heavier guys left (either equip with 2 melta or 1 melta or 1 flamer). The drill is besicaly a way to cross the field unarmed for 1 vet squad.  I also use guard as allies. The armored battle group has the best tank commander there is. Vanquisher co-axial heavy-stuber with lascanon and beast hunter shell is amazing. I take one vanquisher commander and a vanquisher commissar for a leadership bubble around  my heavy artilery carriage to receive orders at maximum leadership and gain ignore cover on a medusa cannon. Take one thunderer as a troop choice and have a demolisher with lower point cost. The armored battle group also open one slot for a vulture which is prefered over the vendetta this days.

GW have open the flood gate with a million dataslates and formations and crazy fast moving mission... But guard have receive almost nothing... a storm trooper supplement, awesome great. I can already take a platoon of them in my elite choice. A bullgryn platoon formation, a leman russ formation... We don't need extra stuff because we already have it available. Guards have a ton of cool toy they were not allowed to use before. The hades breaching drill is a drop pod that moves and Ram stuff, sabre platform have interceptor and skyfire, thunderer are cheap demolisher, tank commander from the armored battle group can give order to other vehicles and have acess to co-axial and special ammunition. Cyclops demolition squad to add fun ramdom stuff to special mission. Death Korp of krieg have good rough riders and they come in platoon format. Elsinian have valks as dedicated transport. Guards have been ready for 7th edition for a long time now, so long we forgot we were already there. Now every body is getting on to our level of crazy stuff. Super heavy are in the game, try a crassus transport with 35 guys inside from multiple units.

I don't play guardmans on the battle field, I play the Imperial Guard which has soldier from a milion different worlds. I almost never worry about objective secure because if I am close to an ennemy unit, that means I am either dead, dying or killing the 2 guys remaining. So everything goes to take objective, because they will be alone on the token or be dead.

I love IG, and I still have a blast playing it now that people plays with more stuff and are more open to the whole range of rule and models.

Love and kisses

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Re: What Archetypes of Imperial Guard Do You Play?
« Reply #10 on: June 21, 2015, 08:27:58 PM »
I have me a hard on for the tanks.  Armoured company was my first, and most loved imperial army.

That's right, on the tail end of 3rd edition, I was fielding leman russes for troops.  And smiling like a bugger the whole time.

These days, I enough figs to rotate through a variety of the guard flavours, and I've had the most success with a massed hoard approach.

3 ~50 man units, two with guns (AC/LC), and a big ball of conscripts for yarrick.  once you add in the psykers you're in the neighbourhood of 1500.  From here I've had the most success with either an allied deathstar (daemons, SMurf), or spamming vendettas to carry the PCSs (who get flamers or melta).

Next best luck is AV 12 spam.  a metric amphetamine parrotton of chimeras and vendettas, and Russes to draw fire.  Worked really good in 5th/6th.  Less so now.  Tanks got tougher again in 7th,  but snapshot rules are causing me too much grief to run proper tank spam.

After that, spamming flyers is the way to go.  if you can get a couple vendetta, a few avengers, and a punisher in there, you're in a good position to win by forfeit.  Top out points with an entrenched platoon (or two), or massed russes (see note above about 7th).

I've tried traditional tank wall, mechanized, and pure infantry SAFH* but with the prevalence of D weapons, and the loss of 'lumbering behemoth' the russes just don't last.  SAFH goes down right quick when the enemy realizes he can just target your HW squads.

I've had some luck with grenadier type forces, especially with carapace being as cheap as it is...but they usually just do OK because of their transports, and we're back to three points earlier.

If we were given access to a war gear like the wave serpent shield (2+ or similar to reduce a pen to a glance) it would triple the effectiveness of russes.  Imagine if your punisher/executioner couldn't get stunned?  They become valid again.

I've love to take the all infantry lists from my heyday, but without access to doctrines (or similar) the only way to pull a 'raining men' moment with a platoon is in an apoc sized game with strategic assists to get accurate drops on turn one.  THAT was a good game though (i learned the hard way that Wraithlords still pack a pair of flamers).

Access to the Armored company war gear from forge world would be nice too.  IE, that tank hunter shell Packetmaster mentioned.  That, or some kind of command tank type benefit for 'normal' russ squads.
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