Thoughts on Vulkan - Part 3 - Troops

As they're somewhat spread out (for which I apologise) the previous parts can be found at the following links,

Part One

Part Two

Okay so we covered HQ's and Elites so the next logical place is the Troops section,

So we have a whole two choices here and as I see little use for Scouts in a Vulkan themed list so we'll move straight onto Tactical Marines.

Tactical Squad.

So our basic 5 Marine squad will set us back 90 points and requires upgrading to 10 men before we start to get access to useful toys bringing the total up to 170 points and as were already paying 190 points to gain Vulkan then we only really want to take upgrades that are complimented by him.
That means weapon-wise were looking at a Flamer or Meltagun as our special weapon, a Multi-Melta for our heavy weapon selection and possibly a Combi-Weapon (or two*) on our Sergeant. They'll obviously need some form of transport and I tend to favour Rhino's in a Vulkan list as we can shoot out of the top without exposing ourselves to anti-personnel fire.

* Yes two. Bolt Pistol can be swapped for one and so can his Boltgun. I'm not sure how often I'd do this but it's a useful way of adding an anti-personnel weapon to a squad that's gone all melta with it's options ;-)

My 'Default' Marine Configuration in a standard Marine list is usually this,

Troops: Tactical Squad (11#, 205 pts)
   9 Tactical Squad @ 205 pts (Flamer; Multi-melta; Rhino)
      1 Sergeant
      1 Rhino (Searchlight; Smoke Launchers; Storm Bolter)

But though it has weapons that take advantage of Vulkan's special rules it doesn't really take full advantage of them. Combi-weapons on Sergeants are a relatively cheap way of enhancing a units fire-power and with the benefit of Vulkans Twin-linking combined with BS4 is very reliable. The choices were going to have to make are between Flamer or Melta or if were feeling flush we can give him both.

I'd never really considered giving a sergeant two combi-weapons until I saw Stelek's use of two special weapons on Honour Guard Squads in Blood Angels lists and the principle seemed fairly sound. Even though Combi-Weapons are only 'one-shot' it's likely that a Marine Squad close enough to use one is going to get it's best results the first time it uses them rather than from multiple shots...not convinced?

Okay, lets take a Flamer as an example.

Your most likely to be in charge range when your using a Flamer which means that you'll be charging after using it as you don't want to be shot at and then charged by whatever it is your torching. First couple of turns will be spent getting into that position, anything that is squishy enough to be killed in a turn of assault won't need softening up anyway and anything larger or tougher will probably take a few turns to beat (or beat you) meaning your unit will probably be rendered ineffective for future combats regardless. The upshot of this is that you'll most likely only be using that Flamer once so the fact that you can only use it once isn't much of a hardship.

When using a Meltagun (or Combi-Melta) you'll find that it will inevitably (even when twin-linked) miss the one time you need it to work, lol. Having two obviously mitigates this problem somewhat and also helps out on those other occasions when a Melta weapon hits and then you roll double-one for damage...

Therefore the dual combi-weapon option is a great way of making a unit increasingly effective and enhancing it's duality substantially.

Like this,

Troops: Tactical Squad (11#, 230 pts)
   9 Tactical Squad @ 230 pts (Meltagun; Multi-melta; Rhino)
      1 Sergeant (Combi-Flamer x1; Combi-Meltagun x1)
      1 Rhino (Searchlight; Smoke Launchers; Storm Bolter)

The only downside to this unit is getting hold of enough combi-weapons to actually model them, lol.

Though the above unit is probably what I would use, the use of combi's allows you a number of options that become viable in a Vulkan list due to the increased reliability bought about by twin-linking. Though I said at the beginning that I'd only take weapons that Vulkan could enhance there's always the option of combat squads to divide your Marine unit into a pair of effective ones.

Troops: Tactical Squad (11#, 230 pts)
   9 Tactical Squad @ 230 pts (Meltagun; Missile Launcher; Rhino)
      1 Sergeant (Combi-Flamer x1; Combi-Meltagun x1)
      1 Rhino (Searchlight; Smoke Launchers; Storm Bolter)

In the above configuration half the unit stays in the Rhino and goes off tank-hunting with it's pair of Melta weapons while still having the luxury of some anti-infantry fire-power. Meanwhile the Missile Launcher half camps on an objective taking pot-shots at light armour with it's Krak missiles. This unit mitigates an inherent problem sometimes encountered with Vulakn lists, namely lack of long range shooting.

My objections to Drop Pod lists have been stated previously but there's a 'Drop' list here if anybodies still interested.

I think that'll do for now. I'll try and get Fast Attack done slightly sooner than the two week gap between parts 2 and 3.....

Thoughts and comments are (as usual) most welcome.
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