Gaming @ Da Club: The Riddle Of Steel & Saim-Hann Grav-Tanks

Lots of city fight this week, Space Marines, Chaos Space Marines, Necrons, and Eldar…

So here is a riddle for you guys, check out the battle picture below- a massive brutal close assault of Space Wolves and Dark Eldar. Here is the question- It is a 2000 point game and there are six independent characters taking place in the assault- can you name six in the list?

On the far reaches of the club tables the Saim-Hann warhost continues to strike back at the mon-kei in a show of power that Eldar still command respect in a world full of power armor and insane builds…

Grav-tanks have also been more important than ever here at the close of 5th edition. Equipped correctly they can put out a decent amount of shots for Eldar, but this get’s expensive and it can’t compete with even a Grey Knight auto-cannon dread. That’s not to say you don’t want the Eldar gun upgrades- shuriken cannons under slung are a must, and then either missile launchers or scatter lasers.

At the start of the game my grav-tanks stay close to the jetbikes and vypers with two roles in mind. The first is to add a few more shots into the target- since jetbikes and vypers are so fragile, anything that comes into range of the warhost and that is a threat needs to be ten out 100%. Tactical marines land in a drop pod point blank- that tac squad his to go! Jetbikes alone with doom won’t do it, so they need the help of the vypers and grav-tanks for a final push. Up close I can drop two full units a turn with average rolling.

Jetbikes---Vypers---Wave Serpent

Jetbikes---Vypers---Fire Prism

In addition to supporting as a gun boat the grav tanks provide cover saves for my vypers and jetbikes behind them- using the bulk of the model footprint to gain cover. Generally the energy shields and holofields will protect them, along with trying to force your opponent to shoot at more pressing models in your army.

Moving into mid game the role of the grav-tanks change assuming they are still up. Wave serpents have delivered their suicide cargo of banshee’s and fire prisms might have the prism cannon weapon destroyed.

Enough of the enemy has closed that their few shots aren’t going to make much of a difference so it’s time to run and hide- boosting far to the opposite ends of the table, out of harm’s way of everything where they wait.

Many of my opponents have viewed this move as bait, and rightfully ignore them, focusing on pounding my jetbikes and vypers, but they are not bait…

The grav-tanks are then waiting for the end of the game, so they can contest objectives, or block off parts of the table with a skimmer wall to protect my jetbikes depending on the mission. Of course while they are getting ready for this run, my jetbikes and vypers must have demeched my opponent.

Turn five is then tank shock and contest, which I have to say is still uber frustrating for guys to deal with- especially players who have only experienced 5th edition and only play against power armor- taking down AV with a cover save (and maybe fortune) and holo-fields, and vectored engines pretty much requires a lucky shot. Eldar are still unmatched in this arena, and while I won’t say holo-fields are priced fairly in the game, at this point I’m taking them no matter the cost.

Hopefully they stay in the new codex, and hopefully we’ll get our crystal targeting matrix back…

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