Saturday, April 30, 2011

Ork Heavy Support Choices

Hey guys,

this will be the last article in my series of articles concerning different choices of the Ork codex. After this one you will know all I think about these choices and where the advantages and disadvantages of different units lie. So we’ll just start right up with the Heavy Support choices.
In the Heavy Support section we have (like in the Elite section) the choice between six different types of units, making it a really tough decision what we want to hit the battlefield with.

The first choice the codex offers to us is in my opinion already one of the best we can take: the Battlewagon (BW). With a front armour of 14, intelligent positioning and a KFF Mek those vehicles are really hard to take down for our opponents, well of course meltaguns are still a problem. But being hard to destroy is not the only thing that makes the BW a great choice for many Ork armies. In addition to this (at least for an Ork) strong armour the BW is allowed to transport up to 20 models and being open-topped means they can always charge out of it. The BW is therefore a really good way to transport your Boyz or Nobz right into battle, I often combine an attack of two of those, one filled with Boyz and one with MANz, this way I can compete with nearly everything I run into. The BWs themselves are most of the times equipped with deff rollas and can with this upgrade easily crack open transports so that my Orks can attack what was inside.
Another good idea is to use the BW as a safe place for your Lootas, this is because it has no firepoints and every Loota can shoot as long as the vehicle has LoS to an enemy. You just have to watch for enemies shaking or stunning your BW, because your Lootas will not be able to shoot in this case.
The BW comes with a whole lot of possible upgrades. I’m just going through all of it rather quick:
-killkannon is too expensive for what it can do and we lose transport capacity
-‘ard case is just crap, we WANT to be open-topped
-deff rolla is always great if you have the points (and I always find points for this somewhere)
-red paint job can be interesting, if you use your BWs for quick attacks and tend do drive a lot
-grot riggers are one of the best upgrades, only the KFF Mek BW doesn’t get them, but every other BW always gets those
-stickbombs CAN be played, but I often do not buy them
-armour plates could be worth the points, but I normally do not buy them for Raiders and so there is no reason for me to buy them for my BWs
-boarding plank, wrecking ball, grabbin’ claw have been played before the FAQ ruled the deff rolla in our favour, now they are normally just wasted points
-big guns are never bought by me, but the lobba could be useful, some player tend to play it a lot
-one or two big shootas MUST be bought, otherwise your BW is too often immobilised
If you don’t have the spare points to buy a deff rolla, you should at least always buy a reinforced ram to be allowed to reroll dangerous terrain checks, believe me you WANT this ;)
To sum it up, I think the BW is a really really great choice and it has nearly infinite possible uses in your army. What is great about it is that you can even buy it as a dedicated transport for your Nobz and MANz and I strongly recommend doing this, because this way you can either play more of them or get free Heavy Support slots for other gimmicks.

The next of these gimmicks would be the Deff Dread. The Dread is basically a Dreadnaught with two CC weapons and has to buy two additional weapons. I would in this case buy either two big shootas or two skorchas, because these are the cheapest weapons. When you add grot riggers and armour plates you get a Dreadnaught with two heavy flamers at the cost of 100 points. Not a bad deal at all in my opinion, but most of the times I just don’t have 100 spare points in my lists. The only really good use I have found for this unit so far is to protect Gretchin on your home objective against outflanking units, many Marines do this with a Bot, but that one can at least do some damage to vehicles with long range firepower and our Dread just can’t do that. So sadly he is often left home by me. Maybe I’ll find some lists where it is really useful to play one or two of them, because thanks to the Mek I can at least play one of them as a (not scoring) Troop choice.

Right after the Deff Dread the codex gives us the opportunity to buy three smaller Dreadnaughts as a single choice: Killa Kans. A good deal? I really think so. Each of those already has a CC weapon and has to buy a shooty weapon. I normally buy grotzookas for my squads, because with 2 S6 blast templates per model I get something really useful against horde armies without having to buy Burnaboyz or stuff like that. But with 6-9 S10 power attacks in CC I get something useful against vehicles as well. Besides the grotzooka you could either buy skorchas because they are cheap or rokkits, with BS3 the Kans at least can hit with those. Other upgrades are grot riggers and armour plates, remember what I told you about this concerning buggies? The same is true for Killa Kans, man those are squadrons, why should I buy this stuff?!?!
A standard unit of Kans in my army only costs 135 points, and will most often do a lot more than a single Deff Dread, I think you realize which of these units are preferred by me.

Next up are Flash Gitz. Flash Gitz are the only unit in this codex where I have absolutely no clue what to do with them at all. They are basically Nobz equipped with random shooting weapons, but without any other upgrades that are normally allowed to Nobz (besides the Painboy and cybork bodies). If I want to upgrade the weapons of this unit to have more shoots (always remember, more shots are good at BS2), I have to pay at least 150 points for the smallest possible unit. I just can’t see where this will ever be a good deal for me. Wondering why I’m not telling more about this unit? Well, there is nothing more to say, they CAN buy Kaptin Badrukk as a Nob, but not really interesting, because I will never ever buy this unit in any of my lists.

Coming back to something more useful we find Big Gunz as our next choice. We can buy up to three guns as a single choice and can buy additional crew member, ammo grotz or even a Runtherd (the last one is rather expensive, but sometimes you may want to buy it, because it can keep your Big Gunz on the table with his improved LD). For about 60 points we can buy three (short range) missile launchers that at least have BS3. Not the worst we could do with our spare points. The main problem for Big Gunz is still that they are a Heavy Support unit and I tend to buy lots of BWs and Kanz in this section. The other two possible upgrades for the kannon are either a lobba (waste of points and BS in my opinion) or the zzap gun. Zzap guns are somehow funny, because they have an AP of 2 and each time roll for their S. They CAN deal lots of damage or do nothing at all, always remember it is an Ork codex after all ;)
Big Gunz are at least not our worst unit and you can always feel free to buy them especially in games with a smaller point limit.

The last unit in our codex are Looted Wagons. At the first time I saw them I thought they were some kind of smaller BWs (like Dreads and Kanz), but I soon realized how wrong I was. Looted Wagons can only transport 12 models (that can even Trukks), have front armour of 11 and can buy no deff rollas. Everything that really makes the BW a great choice is either missing or just really bad. Looted wagons can’t even be bought as a dedicated transport vehicle by any unit throughout the complete codex. I don’t know if this is by purpose or someone made a mistake but this makes the Looted Wagon a really unworthy unit. I could compete with Trukks as dedicated transports, but has no chance to compete with a BW as a Heavy Support unit. I’ve seen people playing Looted Wagons equipped with boomguns, because they just use it as a weapon platform instead a transport vehicle. If I would do this I’d have to buy the Wagon, the gun and the ‘ard case to keep it alive. This way I’d pay 115 points for a boomgun?! My standard BW with deff rolla and grot riggers only costs 125 points and will do much more throughout the game. So all in all Looted Wagons are not bad at all, but should be played as transports and therefore should be allowed to be bought as dedicated transports. But because this is not the case, I don’t play them at all.
In my armies I often play 2x BWs and 1x Kanz or 1x BW and 2x Kanz, because for the way I play those setups are just great. I strongly recommend trying out a lot and playing around with different possible setups for you.
That’s basically all I can tell you about this codex. Next time I’ll show my current list and explain why I chose different units in there, but after that I’m out of topics. So once again, make suggestions ;)

Cheers Cleutin

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