Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Saim Hann Private Reserve

So, I was going over my last 2k Saim Hann list (not intended to be especially 'eavy but 3 fire prisms is pretty mean), which currently looks something like this:

Farseer - jetbike, spirit stones, mind war, fortune, guide, runes of warding, singing spear

6 Guardian jetbikes - 2 shuriken cannons
Warlock - jetbike, embolden, singing spear

6 Guardian jetbikes - 2 shuriken cannons
Warlock - jetbike, embolden, singing spear

6 Guardian jetbikes - 2 shuriken cannons
Warlock - jetbike, embolden, singing spear

10 Dire avengers
Exarch - diresword/pistol, bladestorm, defend
Wave serpent - twin-linked scatter laser, shuriken cannon, spirit stones, star engines

Vyper - scatter laser, spirit stones, shuriken cannon, holofields

Vyper - scatter laser, spirit stones, shuriken cannon, holofields

Vyper - scatter laser, spirit stones, shuriken cannon, holofields

Fire Prism - spirit stones, holofields, star engines

Fire Prism - spirit stones, holofields, star engines

Fire Prism - spirit stones, holofields, star engines

Anyway, I was thinking this army might do well to take advantage of the 5th edition reserve rules. Holding everything back could be beneficial for several reasons:
  • The main strength of the army is being able to engage the enemy on your own terms. This tactic might be the most drastic expression of that, essentially a drop pod army with a little less reach but the ability to redeploy surviving forces (by hauling ass and regrouping) if the enemy comes on too strong.

  • Given that the bikes all have to ride flying bases, absolute cover is pretty impossible with any bike squad size over 4 or 5. If I didn't get first turn, any decent gunline could make mincemeat of many key units before I could budge (or cast fortune). But not if I didn't have anything on the board yet! And since deployment zone choice would be pretty moot, I could always choose to go second and deny my opponent even more time to shoot up my guys.

  • Moving on from my own table edge is not that big of a deal given the ridiculous movement capabilities of every single unit. In spearhead deployment, I could attack and defend both quarters along my table edge and potentially have access to a very wide flank on the enemy. It could prevent scuttling nids and other fast assault units from engaging 1st turn in the dawn of war scenario, and a surprise group of bikes and tanks coming in from the table edge in a later turn could pick the weakest point in their line, blow through it, and disrupt the whole attack.

  • I still haven't played against chaos demons, but trickling my army out more slowly might mitigate the surprise deep-strike shooting attacks that demons are capable of.

  • The less time my enemy has to immobilize or destroy my skimmers, the better. The vypers, fire prisms, and wave serpents all have key secondary roles to play as objective contesters.

A few more thoughts. The biggest cons to using this strategy would probably be the sheer unpredictability (somewhat overcome by redundant units) and the drastic reduction in killing power by trickling my guns onto the table a bit at a time. The army thrives on concentrating as much firepower as possible on one or two key enemy units at a time, and without backup, units might not survive long enough to make any kind of dent into the crucial targets (big guns, troops holding objectives). I know there's a few fellow wild riders out there, so drop a line. I still haven't even put my warhost up on those bedamned flying bases yet, but they're all based. I'm still going to try and finish the nid paint jobs before moving on to the eldar.

10 comments:

Docrailgun said...

For what it's worth, Fritz at The Way of Samm-Hain has some good ideas you might want to check out. One of his comments was that if he could start from scratch (with the aim of being uber-competitive), he probably would leave out the Vypers in his army and field more Fire Prisms and mech'd Dire Avengers (and of course, lots of jetbikes).

bullymike said...

ya i know fritz. his blog is linked to there on the side and we comment on each other's posts all the time. sure, the current state of vypers is not best case scenario. however a) it's essentially a fluff saim hann unit b) 3 vypers split up in units of 1 each with holofields makes them a lil more survivable, and c) if they're shooting at the vypers, they're not shooting at my bikes or avengers. i already use more prisms than fritz, no way i would use less than 2 in any case.

eriochrome said...

Would an Auturch help with the reserves rolls? Get more units on faster.

bullymike said...

Good point, but I'd rather have a seer to get guide and fortune. Never had much luck with assault elements in my sh, so I decided to go pure ranged attack.

RealGenius said...

I've run a 2 Autarch all-reserve army before and I think you either need to go all the way with the reserve army or stick to the basic Wild Rider concept.

The reserve army works best with choices like War Walkers, Scorpions that can Flank and pop-up anywhere, and deep striking Spiders and Hawks. Seems like otherwise you aren't optimized.

I've found the 2A army excels against static deployment forces because you can easily deploy to maximize your killing power.

I've also played it against Chaos Demons, and they really negate the re-deploy advantage (but at the same time negating their advantage).

But if you are putting your army in reserve, you really need to squeeze some space for a 72 point Autarch (give him an ASC and ride with the Avengers to Blade Storm).

You've got only the 1 HQ, so I'd sacrifice something to get the Autarch. Otherwise I think you will end up screwed too many times-- trying to focus your firepower, but being limited by things being stuck in reserve.

Master Darksol said...

I got a question on your Dire Avengers. Why the Diresword and not the PW/Shimmershield? You've given them Defend and Bladestorm, which leads me to believe you're going to use them to hold objectives ... so why not the added inv. save in-case of combat?

bullymike said...

that's a good point, it costs 5 more points but i'm sure i could squeeze it in somewheres. the diresword is not as good as i remembered...

bullymike said...

jim you might be right, i'll play a couple games with this list and see how she does.

Bushido Red Panda said...

This is VERY similar to the list I'm going to be running for Macharian.

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