I have done a lot of experimenting with the new Chaos Marines. I’m done with struggling playing lists using what I own, and I need to grow the army. To that end I’ve begun working on a list featuring Spawn and Bikers so far. I’ve toyed around with a few other units as well, and have learned a few things.
Aside: I have since done a proper review of the Maulerfiend.
The Maulerfiend is a unit I’ve toyed with for a handful of games so far, and have had limited success. The big thing for me is that he can move 12″, and isn’t slowed by terrain at all. Oh, it has fleet too. So, it can keep up with Bikers and Spawn easily.
Keeping up with them so far has been the easy part, but being useful has been the hard part. Even the usefulness I feel falls more to me and moving it than it does anything else. Basically, I’ve been too aggressive with it. Just because it could leap on something turn #2 doesn’t mean it should. If I can temper myself a bit with the Maulerfiend, I feel I’ll do far better with it.
Regarding its use I’ve been thinking about the lasher tendrils (reduce attacks by 2 against those basing it), and the magma cutters (free I1 attacks if it hits something in combat). So far I have put the lasher tendrils on it. My thought has been it gives the Maulerfiend the ability to go after units as well as vehicles. When you have 4 S10 attacks on the charge, do you really need the additional attacks from the magma cutters for taking down a vehicle – at least coupled with daemonforge? It just seemed overkill.
The problem I’ve run into is that I’m dying from shooting attacks (not surprising), or I get into combat with a grenade equipped unit. The models are only making 1 attack and tendrils do not let me reduce attacks below 1, so it’s useless in that situation. It’s great to reduce down that power fist coming through, or if I was going up against another Dreadnought, but I feel those are situations I should be avoiding. I feel the Maulerfiend is for crushing vehicles, taking down tanks, opening transports, etc.
To that end, I feel sticking with magma cutters is my best bet. It’s insurance to do the job well, and if I do find myself against a unit then the Maulerfiend gets a little extra killy; which seems better considering the tendrils have proven very limited use thus far. Oh, and magma cutters are free, tendrils are not.
Another unit I’ve tried, though only once, was the Heldrake. I have to admit I was very impressed with it. I took the baleflamer on it, a S6 AP3 torrent flamer with soul blaze. In the game I played with it, it accounted for most of my kills against my opponent. It did not completely devastate my opponent, but it was useful every single turn. As a flyer it’s naturally fast as well, keeping with the theme, but it also has hover, which I found to be great. The Heldrake doesn’t give me that same sort of saturation effect that the other fast units do. It can’t get into combat, but I found it did very well to supplement those other units.
Anyway, just some of my experiences and thoughts so far on a few units I’ve gotten to test out a bit. If anyone else has experiences with these units then I’d love to hear it.