Experiences Against the New Blood Angels

Blood Angels: VampiresI’ve now played three games against the new Blood Angels with my Orks. I have not seen everything the codex has to offer of course but I’ve certainly seen some of the key units and rules in those games.

Death Company
This unit is straight up brutal. Toss a Chaplain and a Sanguinary Priest in there and you have a damn hard hitting unit that’s a chore to destroy. On the charge these guys are re-rolling failed hits and wounds, plus have furious charge, then add in a ton of power weapons and it’s just ugly…oh, and they’re fearless. If you live and get off some attacks then the Death Company has the priest, assuming one joined them, to give them feel no pain. The downside to this unit is rage, always having to move towards the nearest visible enemy, so it’s possible to distract the unit and drag them around where you want them, at least if they’re on foot.

In dealing with them the only way I’ve had success so far is a unit of Nobz. I run a Speed Freek style list, my own devising I call Speedmek. Anyway, with this style of list I run I just don’t have the bodies to throw at a Death Company and win, I’ve tried. Getting Kans or Dreads in against these guys would be great, no armor save, no feel no pain and instant death to any ICs with them, but I have not managed that. The Nobz however in the two games I took them did wipe out the Death Company both times. I run six Nobz all uniquely kitted out and only one power klaw if you can believe it. I have big two choppas, two sluggas and choppas and the Painboy in there. I like this style of Nobz mob because I get I4 on the charge or I3 when not charging, so always before power fists swing. Like any Nob unit, I have the wound abuse going on and since I take cybork bodies for the 5+ invulnerable save, I’m always getting a save of some type.

Death Company Dreadnoughts
Dreadnoughts with fleet, furious charge, AV13 and two dreadnought close combat weapons…ouch. If you thought fighting an Ironclad was rough then try facing down one of these. I did manage to take two of these down by using my Tankbustas in assault. Tankbustas have tankbusta bombz as a standard kit (6 + 2d6 penetration). I then had two tankhammers (S10), and a power klaw on my Nob. I lost some of them of course but I still had all those big hits and they brought them down, two different assaults of course. If I didn’t have the Tankbustas to throw at them then this would have gone very differently. A Nob with a PK (power klaw), can bring one down but on average you’re landing 2 hits on the charge and a 50% chance to glance it. If you don’t do it on the charge then the odds get worse and meanwhile Boyz are dying and chances of losing combat are likely, which means possibly being swept.

Furioso Dreadnoughts
Don’t recall much about them other than they are very close to a Death Company Dreadnought but only AV12. Despite that it’s still a very deadly form of Dreadnought.

Assault Marines
Pretty much the bread and butter of the Blood Angels. Nothing special of note regarding the unit but Blood Angels field them in quantity since they’re troops. The fact they are troops is probably the greatest threat with them. They are a fast moving and hard hitting unit. I’ve been dealing with them the same as any Assault Squad, ensuring I get the charge and throwing lots of Orks at them.

I’ve seen this in my first game and as quickly as it showed up I blew it out of the sky with Deffkoptas. It’s a nice vehicle from what I’ve heard regarding its rules. It’s an AV12 vehicle and so it’s not invincible. Until I see more of it I haven’t much to say regarding it.

Dante and Honour Guard
I wasn’t all that impressed with what I saw of these guys. Dante has a mask which has a curse where he lowers the stat lines of an IC at the start of the game, which is annoying. I fielded Grotsnik and he became an overpriced Nob because of Dante. When push came to shove though the unit fell. I had charged in with two units of 12 Trukk Boyz, one unit was ‘ard Boyz so a 4+ save. Dante was instantly killed from a power klaw of mine and my Boyz just chewed through the Honour Guard with volume of attacks.

Unlike Dante, Astorath was brutal in assault. I don’t recall all his special rules but he has a power axe that’s +2 strength and gets to re-roll wounds (think it was wounds). He also has some rule where you have to re-roll any invulnerable saves you make against his attacks. Astorath in the right unit would be great at taking out hammer unit like my Nobz.

That’s pretty much my experience so far. I’ll surely get in a ton more games against them in the coming months and can expand on this. I think generally speaking a lot of Blood Angels lists are going to be heavy on Assault Marines and jump packs in general, Vanguard, Death Company with jump packs, etc. They have fast tanks too so I expect to see a fair share of those to give supporting fire to the army. The army is built for assault, no doubt about it, so the obvious weakness is the lack of shooting/short range but even that weakness is dependent on the list they build. They can get shooty units but I feel they’ll be used sparingly and more focus put on what makes Blood Angels what they are otherwise you may as well just play vanilla Marines. My general experience has been to shoot the hell out of things and then charge the weakened units. With Orks that’s no easy task and other armies, or lists, would be better suited doing it. Oh, and making damn sure you get the charge. It’s a bit of a dance to try and skirt the fast moving units to time your charge but you have to.  If you misjudge their charge range and get slammed into then it’s going to be brutal.

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