Thursday, August 4, 2011

This Week's Inbox

From my friend in the Phillipines:

Soon here and i need your advice on this list. Unfortunately i can't change this list anymore so this is what i got. I need your help with the tactics. This is what i brought

2 Tyrant guard with lash whips 
6 ymgarl genestealers 
3 Hiveguard
2 zoanthropes on spore
10 toxin stealers 
10 toxin stealers 
9 toxin stealers and broodlord with toxin 
15 devilgaunts
tervigon with catalyst toxin and adrenal
hev support
Trygon prime 

I will be against GK, SW, BA, and DE. What can i do against them. Thanks and more power to you site"

I like the list even though the someone people will criticize the lack of redundancy.  GK, SW, BA, and DE can be the most difficult pairings for Nids depending how the lists are built so you'll have some very tough games.

I've been practicing with *Jay* for his trip to Europe to the ETC and I can tell you Nids can do a lot better against GK then people think.  You need to apply a lot of pressure very fast so they can't pick you apart with storm bolters and psyriflemen don't do much against our MC's with FnP.  The best way to avoid force weapons is a multi-assault where you lock down most of the force weapons with stealers or gaunts and put the swarmlord/trygon in so only one GK can strike on them.

Not many tactics are needed in fighting BA, just solid target priority.  They'll either be shooty or assaulty.  Assaulty BA won't be a problem for poisoned stealers and the swarmlord.  Shooty BA often feature assault cannons which play right into your hive guard range.

Hopefully you've had enough practice against SW to know how to deal with them now.  JoTWW, TWC, and long fangs are their trump cards.  You only have one MC vulnerable to JoTWW, Swarmlord can handle TWC, so max long fangs are the biggest threat to your list IMO.  I'm sure you know ymgarls morphed for t5 can handle long fangs even in terrain, so use all of your stealers to put pressure on them and make sure your monsters have cover and FnP the one you think he wants to missile the most.

DE can be a big problem for us.  Just remember the board is finite in size and each stealer unit has a 18" threat range in each direction forming a 36" diameter threat bubble.  By spacing the models out 2" and infiltrating the units across the board, you can create a wide net to catch skimmers that are jumping around.  Just like against GK, you need to be very aggressive with your fleet units in asserting table control.  Devilgaunts can actually be quite effective in suppressing DE skimmers also.

Good luck and tell me how it goes!

From Matt:


I've been following your blog for a while, and I'm learning so much.  As a novice player, it gives me a lot of hope that Tyranids can be competitive.  Anyway, I've noticed that you've recently changed your list, and I'm curious why you've made these changes, what gaps did you feel you were missing.   Now you seem to be going all Ymgarls vs Hive guard, and you've got a few HVC, is that mainly a range change?  HVC is good enough for suppression, and Ymgarls are great for early assaults?  Your past two matches seem to have worked well, so I'm not saying its a good idea, just something different.

Cheers, and thanks so much for the blog!

Matt ~

My list changes for every tournament.  Most of my recent reports were from my ATC trip and preparation.  If you aren't familiar with the format, it's a 5 man team even where the captains take turns with pairings.  Each mission included KP's, 2 cap'n'control objectives, and 3 seize ground objectives.  Because of all these factors, I designed my list to:

1. Limit KP's
2. Assert table control by infiltrating 38 genestealers backed up with FnP and preferred enemy
3. Not worry about JoTWW in hopes my captain would never pair me against SW.

My most recent reports have been in preparation for 'ArdBoyz.  The inclusion of HVC's and Ymgarls is a response to the scenarios and current shift in the meta.  It's my practice to design the lists for each tournament specifically.  There are some very well written Nid lists out there that just won't do well in certain scenarios, or against certain armies.

When designing the list with 27 ymgarls and 6 MC's, I looked at these factors:

1.  Mission #1 is KP's, so my MSU list designs would be at a disadvantage.  My current list features 3 MC's with t6 and 2+ armor giving cover to the other so no "easy" KP's there.  Ymgarls usually get into assault before they get shot so they work out well also.

2.  Mission #2 is 5 objectives, but nothing can infiltrate or outflank.  This means my previous use of ~40 genestealers would be pointless for this entire mission.  However, I took the time to paint all of them so I still wanted to use them.  This was actually the starting point of the list as I thought: "How can I use all my beautiful genestealers as Ymgarls, and still survive without hive guard".

3.  Mission #3 is DoW deployment.  This means no fex stars (carnifex+tyranid prime), and no Parasite of Mortrex (my other consideration) + gargoyles.  Even though they're fast.  Tyranids start with the speed disadvantage of no transports that can move 12" and disembark.  It's my consistent practice to always deploy units in DoW, even if I'm going second to assert board control from the beginning.  Ymgarls also break DoW deployment in a way as they aren't deployed on the table, but still appear and assault without having to cross the board and get shot.

Rupture cannons and HVC's aren't super for destroying transports reliably, but do you think two turns of shooting is enough to at least stun or immobilize a couple?  Rending genestealers are solid against vehicles that haven't moved last turn.  If my hive commander bonus pays off, I should get 2 units of ymgarls and 1 of my commando units on turn 2, right in my opponent's face.  This creates a shift in focus for a bit, also known as "disruption".  All of a sudden, my opponent is forced to deal with these and before they know it, all my MC's are knocking on their front door.

People talk about synergy with Nids a lot.  The thing to remember is this doesn't always mean buffs.  There is synergy in list design also in how it plays out on the table.  This list synergizes the game flow in this way: shoot and survive turn 1, disrupt turns 2-3, drop the hammer turns 4+.

Hope that helps!

From Magnus:


I always read your blog, its brilliant, you are helping so much to hiveminds¡¡¡ . well sorry but my english isn't the best, i hope you can barely understand me :).
well I see this list in yes the truth hurts, stelek (everyone know him so no need presentations i guess) compose this list for ard boyz.

if you have some time it would be great that you can talk about list composition and your thoughts, I am interested in this because i think you are one of the best hivecommander blogger and the list its really diferent as you usually used.

Well the list :

1 Tervigon (Catalyst, Toxin)
1 Tervigon (Catalyst, Toxin)
1 Venomthrope
1 Venomthrope
10 Termagants
10 Termagants
10 Termagants
1 Tervigon (Catalyst, Cluster, Adrenal, Toxin)
1 Tervigon (Catalyst, Cluster, Adrenal, Toxin)
1 Tervigon (Catalyst, Cluster, Adrenal, Toxin)
3 Carnifexes
3 Carnifexes
2 Carnifexes

thanks :)"


I knew this one was coming hehe.  I don't take the time to criticize other blogger's lists on their blogs because I think it's poor form.  The thing about Stelek's list is it plays the rock/paper/scissors game.  It will steamroll some armies and get steamrolled by others.  However, pairings in tournaments can either be very lucky or terrible so his list could get lucky enough to sweep 'ArdBoyz to the top, or get eliminated round 1 because it isn't very balanced.

Space wolves with one or more JoTWW pose a really big problem for this list.  People say that build isn't the best or most popular anymore, but it doesn't change the fact that it still happens.  I played a list with Njal and 3 priests last year which would knock out 600+pts a turn of MC's from this list.

Grey knights also pose a potentially big problem here with the ability of killing 3 carnifex's with force weapons before they even strike.

Dark eldar can zip around and focus fire the tervigons very quickly.

Mech lists in general can sacrifice a couple empty transports, moving them fast and blocking your movement.  This forces the above list to sacrifice movement and entire assault phases clearing the way.

Dawn of war deployment (and mission #3 in general for this year's 'Ardboyz) poses a huge problem with 1280pts invested in carnifex's which have to walk on and cross the table without fleet.  With no shooting whatsoever, I anticipate this list will "auto-lose" scenario #3.

All of that said, *Jay* took 1st in our local 'Ardboyz prelims and 1st at the regional semi-finals with a very similar list last year:

Hive Guard x3
Hive Guard x3
Venomthropes x2
Gaunts x10
Gaunts x10
Carnifex x3
Carnifex x2

It bears a lot of similarity to Stelek's list, but it's far more balanced with shooting units and more speed from the trygon.  At the end of the day, it also comes down to pairings.  Jay and I played at the same store.  I drew the SW list with Njal and 3 priests and he didn't.  Luckily, I only had 2 init1 MC's so I was able to beat the wolf list whereas he could have lost that match.

Hope some of that makes sense and thanks for the email!

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