Thursday, July 8, 2010
40k Overview: The Hammer of the Emperor
Good evening, good morning, good afternoon as the case may be.
After overhearing a discussion between Loki, ZerkeX, and a friend I wanted to get your opinions. I would like to hear your views on the Imperial Guard, their past and present, and how they affect(ed) the game. Have at, but first some of my own views.
As a Tau player, I'm not used to being outshot or having too many vehicles to target and kill, but the Guard are the army most able to put me in this position. When we look at the Guard, the most pivotal part of the army list is the troops section. While generally a shooting-based army, the choice of troops can make Guard from a horde army to a (relatively) small, more elite army. I will go into more detail on this army if you like, but the troops choices can dictate the feel of the army.
First the veteran squad, probably the most common troops choice on the internet, is the essential 5th edition "Powergaming" choice. For one hundred fifty-five points, fifteen less than a bare bones tactical squad, you can buy a veteran squad with three meltaguns in a chimera. By itself this unit has approximately a 56% chance of killing a land raider. With orders this can be raised to approximately a 72% chance. For being cheap and able to de-mechanize the enemy no matter their transport, the veteran squad can be used to make some of the "hardest" armies in any tournament.
My favorite troops choice, the infantry platoon, is the back bone of the "classic" Guard army. Consisting of 25-147 guardsmen per platoon, the platoon has the option to bring an answer to most any opponent and illustrates the "untold billions" in service to the God Emperor. While it can be built to be a competetive choice, they eat points faster than terminators. A good versatile choice and representative of the story of the 40k universe, the infantry platoon can simply swamp the board with bodies and baffle an opponent as to how to kill that many models.
Finally, Loki's favorite troops choice the penal legion squad. Akin to the CSM possessed squad, their speciality changes based on a random dice roll. This unpredictability and their lack of access to anti-vehicle weaponry means they are automatically discounted from "serious" lists. They are an interesting choice and can provide a cheap troops unit to allow more room for other choices or be a replacement for the Schaffer's Last Chancers from the previous codex. They also open up modeling opportunities for the hobbyist and a wide variety of story options for anyone who wants a laugh.
What I'm trying to say is that while the Imperial Guard codex allows for some of the deadliest and hardest to beat army lists in the current 40k atmosphere, but it can also allow some of the most hilarious stories for gamers to play out. I enjoy the challenge of playing against guard who always give me a good fight. Remember that a challenge can also be fun and the sky is not actually falling.