Wednesday, December 7

Tactica: How to play against Grey Knights: Sacrifice

Continuing my series of articles on how to play against Grey Knights we come to "Sacrifice."  This is a very important tool in your belt if you want to play against GK deathstars.  Put simply not much can go toe-toe with the 10 man Paladin Deathstar with 4 mc psycannons, so you will have to learn how to slow them and sacrifice.  Most of the examples are given from games I played where the opponent did well or messed up completely and I noted it.  Well, lets just jump right in.

- Know when (and how) to 'sacrifice,'

The other week another friend and I were talking after a particularly rough game for him and he commented (Sorry if I got this wrong bro) something to the effect of "My TH/SS have no hope of taking out your paladins, especially when I get charged."  While Im sure a lot of you are busy crunching the numbers just to prove the stats lets just simply agree that getting charged by a paladin deathstar with grenades and two characters isn't fun no matter who you are.

My point to him was that the TH/SS termies and the accompanying Reclusiarch didn't need to act like an "answer," but need to act more like a "Problem."  What I mean by this is that all they really need to do is hold me down for two turns.  If they can survive the inital charge (or place himself to get the charge) and his following turn only to be wipped out in my next assault phase they have done their job, and then some!  It will take me around two turns (under good conditions) to get that charge off if he can hold that long then it is my turn 4 before I can do anything with the Deathstar again, A timely sacrifice can swing things heavily.

As an example of how to sacrifice, let talk about my good buddy the Space Wolves player.  We played cat-mouse for about 2-3 turns until he committed his Thundercav deathstar (well within the runic staff area).  After the combat was done I had one paladin and my GM.  I promptly got back in my bus (LR) and sped off.  Sure his T-cav was cut down, but my death-star had been effectively taken out of the game for all but a support role, the noble sacrifice of his T-cav saved him from getting tabled.  Sometimes you just are fighting an uphill battle to win a game, but a well placed sacrifice can turn it from getting tabled to a minor loss. 

- Concentration of force

This is one of the nine Principles of War and it is one of the few that holds true in table top gaming as well.  It is paired heavily in this case with another Principle of War: Cooperation.  What I mean is, when facing GK deathatars don't just throw one squad at them and hope that it does its job! You have to crush each GK unit totally or it will come back to hurt you, or in other words... Kill 'em dead.

What I mean by this is you have to throw your entire army at the thing you're trying to kill, no shooting to stun against this army.  I can't tell you how many times I have had a single strike squad guy cause tons of problems.

A great example of this is when I played another SW buddy of mine who is a very solid player.  I managed to make his T-Cav run off the table from shooting and as such I had my whole Paladin squad in the open as it got out in preparation to charge the T-cav.  Well, he ran up with about 30 Grey Hunters, and a Rune priest and shot everything he had at my Paladins, after the melta smoke cleared I only had my Grand Master alive.  He then charged with all those units and after psychotroke grenades went off I lost my Grand Master, but I killed 4 guys before I did.  The only way he was going to win combat is if he wiped me out, which a nice powerfist made sure of.  After this it was a battle of henchmen.  The simple point is that if he had thrown one squad at me I would have lived and then my paladins would have free reign of the table.  Concentration of force is VITAL!

- The power of Leadership.

When you are playing Grey Knights remember that you have one very powerful tool at your disposal... They aren't fearless!  Is a big bad 10 ma Paladin unit getting your day down?  TANK SHOCK! yes it may fail miserably on the first time, or even the third... But what better use do you have for all those vehicles that have been shaken/ weapon destroyed?  The best part is that you don't have to kill 25% of the squad to make them roll and as any good player knows: The more you force your opponent to roll the more he can fail.

Things that don't work at killing GK: Plasma Executioner Russ (Hi Ted! lol)

Well, that is all for now.  I'll likely go into more detail another time as I see things that work against my personal GK army.


1 comment:

  1. You know, everything you listed is something that Tau put on their resume: sacrifice of selected units (checked, and in spades), application of firepower (checked, also in spades), enough shocking/shooting to enjoy GK not being fearless (check). The other fun part for Tau is, GK pay a premium to be wicked in CC as well as good in the shooting phase. Tau die to anything in CC. So, those points invested in halberds, fists, grenades and power weapons are all wasted. But, GK cost more. At 1850, the Tau monobuild can point a weapon which has a 25% chance of penetrating (hitting and wounding accounted for) every vehicle in that standard GK netlist. That means a lot of walking.

    Against the Paladin Deathstar list, the games simple. Turn 1: piranhas boost to block them, deploy drones to keep them from going anywhere with out assaulting them. turn 2-3: GK walk and shoot. turn 4-5: one kroot squad per turn. turn 6-7: drones from devilfish, and a crisis squad or two. The crisis suits, broadsides, and hammerheads will all shoot everything to pieces every turn, as Paladins are too good to be locked in combat beyond their phase. A CC deathstar means nothing to a race that dies in CC and instead loads up on a full-foc worth of firepower!