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The Complete Guide to Lash of Submission
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Old 01 Sep 2007, 15:33   #1 (permalink)
Shas'Vre
 
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Default The Complete Guide to Lash of Submission

Here we are, looking at a new Chaos codex, and yet again, there is one extremely powerful psychic power.

Lash of Submission is, without a doubt, the most powerful psychic power I've seen in 4th edition, bar none.

What is it? It's a Slaanesh-only power that allows the psyker to target any enemy unit they can see, and then move that unit 2d6 inches.

It cannot be used on any non-vehicle target that cannot normally be shot at, so Nightfighting, Independent Characters, and models in combat are all invalid targets. It also cannot be used to move models into impassable terrain or off the board.

While it is worded to say that the chaos player moves the models 2d6 inches, in reality, this works as 'up to' - because straight-line movement is not a requirement, so you can use funny angles and backtracking to get rid of any extra movement that you don't want to use.

Let's look at a few uses for this power, starting with some really obvious ones, and moving on to the less obvious.

Improved Fleet
At the very basic level, it can be used as an improved fleet-of-foot. Fleet of foot moves your model d6 inches toward the enemy, Lash moves the enemy 2d6 inches towards you. If the psyker had some extra movement mode, like wings, this can very easily set up first-turn charges.

Push-back
An enemy assault squad is moving towards you, and you want more time to shoot, so you push it backwards 2d6 inches.

Cover? What cover?
Tired of firing at troops hunkered down in hard cover? It would be convenient if they just decided to sit in the open. Likewise, if you don't want to assault someone in cover.

Bunch-up
With the new blastmaster (AP3 Blast) or doom siren (template, AP3), having the ability to bunch up to seven enemy models to fit under the small blast marker sure is nice. Likewise with Chaos's new vindicator, or defiler. Lash the unit and pull them all close together.

Sniping
Want to get rid of the guy with a powerfist? It would be nice if he was the only visible model. Lash can allow you to position enemy models so that the targets you want to see are the visible ones.

Time-wasting
An enemy unit with heavy-weapons can be put behind terrain, so that they have to waste their turn moving in order to see anything again.

Setting up assaults
Given that both characters who can use lash (sorceror, daemon prince) are I6, and therefore likely to strike before any opponent, you can position the enemy unit in whatever way is most advantageous to you. Want to drop the 'hidden' powerfist? Make sure it's one of the only targets in the kill zone. Want to avoid the hidden powerfist? Make sure it isn't in the kill zone.

Get off my objective
On the last turn of a game, simply force any enemy unit claiming an objective to wander off it. Or move a unit that's just made it into a table quarter back out again.


As you can see, there are many many different ways to use this power. Making back it's fairly low point cost isn't too difficult.


So, how do you fight against it?


Imperial armies

Imperial armies have access to psychic hoods. Whether it's on a librarian, or an inquisitor (allied, or not), a psychic hood is the first line of defence against any psychic power. On an Epistolary or Inquisitor Lord, the psychic hood gives a 41% chance to stop every activation of Lash of Submission. On a Codicer, this drops to 28%, and on an Inquisitor, 17%.

Daemonhunters
Grey Knight's Aegis rule gives them the equivalent of a psychic hood whenever a power targets them, but this is not cumulative with an actual hood. In addition, a Null Rod will allow the inquisitor, and his unit, to completely ignore psychic powers, while Unguents of Warding give a flat 50% chance to ignore the power.

Witch Hunters
Sisters of Battle have Shield of Faith, giving them a 33% chance to ignore enemy psychic powers. Inquitiorial Warger that may help would include Hexagramic Wards, Psyocculum, or their own psychic power, Hammer of the Witches. A penitent in the inquisitors retinue would give protection to that unit.

Culexus Assassin
The red-headed step child of assassins is a specialist at killing enemy psykers. He may see more play in repsonse to more powerful psychic powers being available.

Eldar
Eldar Farseers can carry magic rocks (Runes of Warding), which have a success rate of just less than 50% of preventing the psychic power from being used successfully, and increase the chance that the psyker will take a perils of the warp attack.

Tyranids
Tyranids have a couple of their own psychic abilities that can interfere with enemy psykers. Shadow In the Warp slightly decreases the chance of a successful casting, while Psychic Scream (especially in multiples) can drop the psyker's leadership, making it harder to cast the power.

Necrons
Necron Parriahs have a similar effect to a Culexus assassin.


What if I'm not playing one of those armies

Fortunately, there are tactics that any army can use to mitigate the effects of Lash of Submission.

Kill the Psyker
Easier said than done, but an option. Considerations here: A daemon prince with Lash is immune to Instant Death. A sorceror is an independent character and cannot be targetted unless he's the closest target. In assault, either will strike at I6, so go before most enemies.

The good news here, though, is that chaos HQs aren't as tough as they could be in 3rd ed. A well-timed fish-of-fury will probably down them.

Hide
Lash requires line-of-sight to use. Stay out-of-sight until you get an opportunity to kill the psyker. Make them chase you. Nightfighting/Stealth Fields/Concealment rules all play to this strategy.

Mechanize
Lash of Submission cannot effect vehicles. So, if your troops are nestled safely in their trukks/devilfish/rhinos/chimeras/raiders/falcons they're not at risk. Also note, ground-based transports can be used to block line-of-sight to unmounted troops, so this works in conjunction with the hide strategy above. Get your troops in position to handle the psyker before exposing them.

Tarpit
A psychic power used as a shooting attack can't be used if the psyker is in combat. Send a horde of grots, kroot, conscripts or (against a sorceror(because the Daemon Prince has high enough strength to instant-kill most swarm bases)) swarms to tie up the psyker. It will take him a few turns to cut his way out of the melee.


Tactics that won't work

One of the nice things about Lash (in my mind) is that it will make people reconsider old tactics. Some tactics that Lash will run right through.

Mutually supporting units
The thing is, if your enemy can move your models, they can pull them away from the mutual support. So the time you spend setting this up is wasted.

Bait Units
Put a soft target somewhere and hope to draw your opponent into a location of your choosing. Not so easy when your opponent can move the bait, kill it anyway, and leave you no better off than before.

'Hidden' powerfists
It's hard to keep your assault protection alive when your opponent can drag him into the open and ensure that he's the first to die.

Whether you like it, or think it's cheese, one thing is for sure - Lash of Submission exists, and people will use it. It may well end up forcing a change in what types of armies people play, bringing anti-psyker stuff as standard. But, like any other tactic, the best way to defend against it is to know what your opponent might use if for, and how to avoid having it used against you succesfully.
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Old 01 Sep 2007, 16:44   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Complete Guide to Lash of Submission

Muahahaha a way to finnaly stop my friends CC termies >
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Old 01 Sep 2007, 23:23   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Complete Guide to Lash of Submission

A very good and well detailed guide. This will be useful.
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Old 02 Sep 2007, 00:34   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Complete Guide to Lash of Submission

Redbeard! Great to see you're back.
I really like your write up, and yes, the Lash will indeed change the way that a lot of people will write their army lists etc. However, you have helped a lot of us out by giving us ways to counter such an exetremely powerful power.
Cheers
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Old 02 Sep 2007, 06:49   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Complete Guide to Lash of Submission

Quote:
Originally Posted by Redbeard
While it is worded to say that the chaos player moves the models 2d6 inches, in reality, this works as 'up to' - because straight-line movement is not a requirement, so you can use funny angles and backtracking to get rid of any extra movement that you don't want to use.
I don't think we will know the true interpretation of the rule in that respect until it's FAQed. And the consistent success of most of those strategies relies very much on this interpretation. I wouldn't be surprised if they make it a mandatory full 2d6 movement in one direction, just because of the abuse that could result otherwise. Saying "up to" based on backtracking etc sounds really shifty to me anyway, and since it's not a part of the movement phase, appealing to the movement phase rules is not a given.
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Old 03 Sep 2007, 05:00   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Complete Guide to Lash of Submission

Redbeard,

Welcome back Man! +1 Karma for your easy-to-use Lash-primer. I have already had the pleasure of upgrading Baron Damien to a Chaos Sorcerer, and using the lash as his signature move. It is quite simply 9n my mind): Best Power Ever!

Anyone else have any good ideas for this newfound King of Psychic powers?
Ged
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Old 04 Sep 2007, 03:31   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Complete Guide to Lash of Submission

The codex specifically says "Pick a non-vehicle enemy unit" - unfortunatly theres no giving your models fleet of foot.
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Old 04 Sep 2007, 11:08   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Complete Guide to Lash of Submission

Wired: The reference to Fleet of Foot is as follows:

If I just want to get into combat, and I fleet, I can move 1d6 inches towards my enemy.

If I just want to get into combat, and I lash, I can move my enemy 2d6 inches towards myself.
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Old 04 Sep 2007, 16:23   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Complete Guide to Lash of Submission

Let me just say that when we tested this out- it's deadly when used effectively.

Excellent article Redbeard. I also agree that this power is significant enough to change a lot of the more standard approaches to games involving Chaos. Historically- the one thing that a player had the most control over was his own movement phase. Sure- we had special rules such as "A Word in Your Ear" or Special character redployment rules- but none are as potentially influential (or available- a standard Chaos army can have 2 of these bad boys going!) as being able to use the Lash twice every turn.

When you can have that much direct influence on your opponent's movement- strategies must change.

- Yriel
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Old 04 Sep 2007, 17:28   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Complete Guide to Lash of Submission

Quote:
Originally Posted by Redbeard
Wired: The reference to Fleet of Foot is as follows:

If I just want to get into combat, and I fleet, I can move 1d6 inches towards my enemy.

If I just want to get into combat, and I lash, I can move my enemy 2d6 inches towards myself.
Ah sorry misunderstood.
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