Well it's March 25th 2012, which means it's my 40th birthday! I started playing 40k with Necrons about ten years ago, so I thought I would celebrate my 40th on my 40k Blog with some Necron stuff. Since the Codex hit I have been having some real fun with the new rules. I still haven't tried out all the units, but I think I am starting to come to some conclusions on what I have experienced so far. I have currently played eight games, with seven different lists, I know it's not a massive amount, but even so, I have racked up six wins and two loses, and I thought it would be nice to share my thoughts and see if anyone else agrees, or disagrees with my findings...
Well, to be honest I have only played with The Stormlord, Traveller and Overlords so far. I really want to try out a Destroyer lord with some Wraiths at some point, but I am finding it difficult to pay the points for him, especially when he does not unlock Crypteks! Before we talk about Crypteks though...
Imotekh The Stormlord seems like a great choice at first, free lightning attacks and night fight to protect your units. To get the best out of Stormy you have to have the right units to get the most out of his abilities. The lighting attacks are random and unreliable, but we already know that, and without a Crono Cryptek attached to re-roll for the storm, the Storm can easily fail early on in the game. With night fight going off in both your turn and your enemies turn, you need your army to take full advantage of it. There is no point having too much Lance spam with Stormy because of the night fight, but it's ideal for moving Scarabs and Wraiths into position mid table! You could of course take a Solar Pulse Cryptek, to maintain night fight if Stormy fails, or to override night fight in your turn, but then you will lose the lighting attacks from Stormy, and that's why we are taking him instead of two Solar Pulses right? Main problem with Stormy is his abilities can be overridden by some armies, either with good anti night fight abilities, or those that can bypass the night fight and deep strike in!
Anrakyr The Traveller has a cool option of taking over your enemies vehicles and shooting them at their own army. I have had five games with the Traveller, and as yet have not had the opportunity to use his powers! First I was Veiling him in with Warriors/Immortals and a Veil Cryptek, but that proved too random, and usless in Annihilation games where it wasn't worth the risk. Then I tried him in a Barge, but there has been some debate on wether you can use his attacks from the Barge after the main rulebook FAQ hit, so a basic Overloard in a Barge seems to be a much better option...
Overlords in Barges are great, and they seem to be the main choice for most competitive lists. Two Overlords in Barges will unlock two Royal Courts and all the Lance Spam goodness, whilst the Overlords zoom around the board with their sweep attacks! Overlords also work well joined to a main unit of foot Immortals. Give him a Resurrection orb for the 4+ RP on the unit, and then Phaeron so you can move and shoot with their Gauss Blasters.
Crypteks and the Royal Court! What can I say, without The Stormlord, I like to take at least one Solar pulse, but ideally two, and then as many Lances as I can. I know there are a few other cool Crypteks like the Tremor Staff and Harps, but as yet I haven't tried them. I think I can sum up Crypteks in the words of someone I was playing once, he said "those lance Crypteks are starting to get quite annoying!"
First up, I have no Ghost Arks at the moment, which I have discovered is going to be a great help to keep my troops alive. I have been experimenting with both Warriors and Immortals. Warriors aren't as bad as everyone thought when the Codex hit, and even a five men units with a Lance Cryptek can be very useful, especially if protected by Stormy or Pulses. I have never used more than five Warriors when on foot because the unit will go down in the assault regardless of how many Warriors you have in the unit. Foot Immortals are a bit different, five Immortals don't really do much more than Warriors, when you take into account night fight and cover saves from terrain, but units of ten can really put out some firepower, especially with a Phaeron attached like I said previously. As for Tesla or Gauss Blasters, it's really a 50/50 for me on this one depending on how the unit is operating. I foresee me having two units of Warriors in Ghost arks and a large unit of immortals on foot as my standard Troops choice in the near future.
I think I will be able to skip over this one quite quickly! I have tried Flayed Ones in big and small units, and they are as useless as I first thought. I had a go with some Lychguard once and they did nothing all game! The C'tan seems to be the best option in this slot that I have tried so far, although he can be easily taken out and is a bit unreliable for the points, but he can bring something to the game with some of his wargear like Writhing Worldscape. I will use him sometimes for a change, but he is not a standard selection for my army. Having said that, I think he will be awesome in a Cities of Death game and I plan to try that out soon.
I have played around with Destroyers and Heavy Destroyer combinations and they are actually still pretty good, all things considering, but by no means the best fast choice. Heavy Destroyers give you a nice long range option for when you have Solar Pulse up, but essentially they are an easy kill point. If all the rumours are true for 6th edition and preferred enemy really does mean you can re-roll hits, then this unit has a lot of potential. Tomb Blades seem a reasonable alternative, but as yet there are no models for them, and I haven't got around to proxy them, so no comments from me on these at the moment.
Wraiths are one of my favourite units from the new Codex, I have used a unit of six in all my games so far except for one, and they have always performed really well, easily gaining their points back. They are not an uber unit, but they are resilient in numbers and the Whip Coils really help them in close combat. I am sure I will get myself another unit of Wraiths as soon as any new models hit!
Scarab Swarms are of course a no brainier in most Necron lists! How many units you take and in what quantity is a post all in itself. Then you have to add in how many Spyders you need. My preferred choice at the moment is two groups of ten Scarabs backed up with a unit of three Spyders., which means I can still take my Wraiths. Farm the front Scarabs the first few turns, then when that unit goes out to do the business I can start farming the second unit.
It's a real shame the Pylon didn't make it into the Codex as I don't really play big enough games to pay the 420pts to take it at the moment. Oh well, maybe in the next Codex! I have already said I take three Spyders to back up my Scarabs, usually with one Gloom Prism for the Psychic defence and a bit of wound allocation. They tend to perform pretty well and are a nice counter assault unit if really needed. I tried the Monolith once, but that was a disaster! I really need to give it another go and this time not deep strike it in and scatter 12" for a mishap! Just got my Annihilation Barges and they are a solid cheap Heavy Support choice, I foresee me having two Barges with double Tesla and the Spyders to fill out my Heavy support slots as standard.
Well that's it for now, and like I said, this is just from my experience so far. So please feel free to post your comments below...