Now I'm no military or wargaming savant, so don't expect anything ground breaking here. This is still a what I'm up to and what I'm into kind of blog. However, almost all of my hobby time right now, and for this year has been directed to the Dark Angels. As of the Apocalypse game I played in on Thursday evening I've now played 15 games with the new codex and have loved them all. So here are some of my thoughts about what I've used.
Starting with my list. Most of my games have been at the 1000-1200 levels, that's where the GW games sit and about all my CSM friend can scape together. Below is about 1,500 points that I usually select from, you'll all recognise the core as being Dark Vengeance, although I've expanded pretty extensively on that by now.
Venerable Dreadnought 125
10 Tactical Space Marines: plasma pistol; chainsword; plasma gun; plasma cannon. 180
5 Deathwing Terminators: Deathwing Terminator Sergeant (storm bolter; power sword); 3× storm bolter; 3× power fist; chainfist; assault cannon. 245
5 Deathwing Terminators: power fist; 2× pair of lightning claws; 2× thunder hammer and storm shield; assault cannon. 250
5 Assault Space Marines: Veteran Sergeant (bolt pistol; jump pack); power weapon; jump packs; 2× plasma pistol. 140
10 Devastator Space Marines: Space Marine Sergeant (bolt pistol); chainsword; 5× boltgun; 2× missile launcher (flakk missiles); 2× plasma cannon. 220
Imperial Bastion: gun emplacement with quad-gun. 125
Like many a DA player before me I've gravitated towards Belial as my HQ, unlocking the Deathwing as Troops is the main reason, but I have got good value out of his not scattering on Deep Strikes. I have trouble using him however, he is not quite killy enough to go it alone, T4 & A3, these are the stats I find weak. Being doubled out happens too often and I just can't keep him away from all those nasty strong Lords as I'm trying to Slay the Warlord and complete The Hunt (+1vp for killing the Warlord with Belial or his unit). Plus, only 3 attacks means he takes forever to get through a unit when he isn't fighting the heroes.
The Librarian is great, with Divination on the Primaris power he is best friends with my Devastator squad and their heavy weapons. I've tried him out in TDA as well, mixed results so far, his un-Lord-like stats have let him down a bit so I expect more of a support role to remain for this guy.
I've run both Venerable and Unvenerated Dreadnoughts, always with the basic loadout. I lost one once, they seem to do a great job for me, I worry that in larger games they may be too easily picked off as an opportunity target. I've been using him to punch a nasty hole with his multimelta or deal with smaller squads in combat.
My Tactical Squad is GOLD. They take objectives, defend Bastions, gun down anything approaching and then club the survivors with their Boltgun butts. I tend to have them in combat squads as I need the scoring units for such small point games. However after a recent experiment with the Thrice Blessed [insert angelic choir here] Sacred Standard of Devastation I am thinking of trying some games with more tactical squads.
The Terminators get the job done, they tend to fall eventually to massed fire, but I feel this is normally only because they are thrown straight on the fire every game. It's great getting them as Troops for 1,000 point games but in a larger engagement then they could return to Elite if it wasn't such a busy slot already, they are too deadly to waste holding objectives. Maybe if I increase the squad size they could live to take something late game?
I feel I often hear stories about SM Assault Squads not being the bomb. My five man squad with plasma pistols often take a casualty or two on the way in but still manage to pull out wins and Sweeping Advances all over the place. They make a great flank strike force whilst I try to be a little careful about who they face. If you face enemies in a building then I recommend racing Hell to Leather to get your Assault Squad there, read up on the grenades thrown in fire points and the laugh at you opponents tears.
My Devastators are normally fielded in combat squads, that way the Flakk missiles can shoot freely at any flyers that may be around. I tend to keep the Sergeant with the plasma cannons to help fix bad scatter rolls. The missile launcher squad likes to sit up in the Bastion with the Re-roll Librarian and the Quadcannon.
All in all I'm enjoying the Dark Angels on the table, I've rolled out the Deathwing Knights and three man Ravenwing Attack Squad (Dark Vengeance for the win I say) once each so don't feel I know them yet, both worked well enough. What I have tried plays to the fluff perfectly, my Greenwing hold posistions and pump out bolter fire whilst the Deathwing arrive and kill, sadly they tend to die in the process (I guess that's why they paint their armour white).
If anyone reads this, please let me know what you think of these views, am I missing a trick, have I been crazy lucky with my Assault Squads? Do you play Dark Angels, what are your thoughts? What DA units do you fear meeting?