Saturday, 22 December 2012

Chaos Marine Analysis - Mutilators

 Before getting into the swing of the post, I feel like this blog needs a picture in it. So here is some of my progress to my tournament army. I'm aiming to have it all done by 10th January. To avoid that mad painting rush for both Perils of the Warp 2 and Throne of Skulls. But anyway.

Getting the 2+ save section of the Codex finished today I've decided to move onto Mutilators as the topic of today's post. Now these have definitely been the subject of internet hate, but are they really that bad?

Well, at first glance they appear to be an attempt to make a Chaos Marine equivalent to the Paladin. They are 2 wound Terminators and they have the same points cost per model as a Paladin, but there are a few key differences. Firstly, they only have a 5+ invulnerable save, generated from being a Daemon. Secondly, there is absolutely no capacity in the Codex to take them as Troops. Thirdly, their wargear options are extremely limited, and so have no capacity to take anything that shoots whatsoever. Fourthly, they can't churn out as many attacks as Paladins and when they do they are restricted to a maximum of initiative 4. Fifthly, you can only take a maximum of 3 in a squad. And finally, they have a pretty low leadership and a bang average weapon skill. So not like Paladins at all then.

The problem with Mutilators is that you look at their statline and see all of the cool gear that they can morph, making you think, 'if I can maybe get at least 5 of these and get into my enemy's lines I could cause some real damage here'. The problem then comes in the fact that you can't do that, as you're limited to such small squads.

Let's say that you have 3 Mutilators, completely naked, charge a squad of 10 tactical marines. You break out the dual lightning claws. 4 attacks each on the charge, 12, 6 hits, re-rolls, 9 hits. 4.5 dead tactical marines. 64 points worth. No problem, now I'm locked in the combat until next turn so I don't get shot at. 11 tac marine attacks at the same time. 5.5 hits, 2.75 wounds, you should be fine.

Next round of assault comes around. 9 attacks, but now you're probably going to be using Chainfists, you'll also probably have lost a wound by now to tactical marine hits. 9 attacks, 4.5 hits, 3.75 dead tactical marines. In 2 rounds of combat you have killed 8.25 of some of the most standard Troops in the game. You'll kill the remainder in your turn and then your opponent can turn their guns on you if they really want to. It has taken you 3 assault phases to get through that.

Now you can give them veterans of the long war, which would probably have you done with the Marines in 2 assault phases, but this doesn't help you get through not Marine armies and it almost bumps you up to 60pts per model. However, I would still take it just for the Leadership bonus, as the moment you lose a Mutilator is the moment that you take a test on an Imperial Guard Sergeant's Leadership otherwise.

There are a couple of things that you can do to reduce the chances of losing guys, the Marks of Tzeentch and Nurgle are again the main proprietors of this. T5 is useful as it prevents you from getting doubled out very often, although it is spendy, but so is Tzeentch, again improving your invulnerable save. But this isn't making them any more of a threat, all you're doing is inflating their points cost to make them more durable. I made this point with the Defiler, durability isn't really their problem, especially after securing their LD a little bit more, the problem is that they simply don't hit hard enough.

Moving onto Slaanesh and Khorne. You can skip over Slaanesh to some degree as you don't really care whether or not your Initiative is buffed as you can take the hits anyway (See Chaos Terminators). So Khorne is the choice here, an additional +1 attack on the charge. So 3 more attacks against that tac marine squad. 1.5 hits, 2.25 hits after re-rolls, 1.125 additional wounds. It's still not doing the business, and by now your Mutilators are hitting almost 65pts after Vets.

Then you face the problem of getting them into combat. You can deep strike them, which gives your opponent another turn to point their guns at you, or move their guys away as Mutilators aren't particularly fast. Or you could put them in a Land Raider, in which case you will be paying almost 400pts for this squad. Fantastic.

So, in answer to the question at the start, yes. Yes they are.

That said, I'm afraid I'm going to have to steal an idea from somewhere else at the minute, although as a student I should really know how to reference. I was listening to the 40kUk Podcast the other day, the episode entitled, 'The Big Fight III' and they were interviewing the player that came 3rd in the most recent GT qualifier with Chaos Space Marines, and one of his Elites choices were Mutilators.

And what he was doing was what I thought a really good idea. He was just using a lone Mutilator, and dropping it into his opponent's backfield to score a linebreaker point, hiding it after the deep strike. It's not threatening enough to warrant shooting at, and any shots that do come its way it can generally shrug off.

So, if you're going to run Mutilators, as far as I've seen that's probably the way to go.

No comments:

Post a Comment