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Commander Job and Kit
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Old 08 Nov 2005, 04:56   #1 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Commander Job and Kit

Alright well the more I look into space marines the more I wonder on certain things. Power fists have a marked advantage, doubling strength means that even a landraider is fair game, yet I see many commanders with power swords instead. Terminator sergeants have power swords instead of fists despite the apparent advantage of the fist. But that is just weapons.

There are so many options for the Space Marine commander it is just dizzying. So I ask you veteran Space Marine players a few questions.

What equipment works on commanders, in other words what is worth the points without sinking too much into one model, what should the captain or master never leave home without, what should stay on the shelf?

What role does the commander play on the battlefield, what tasks does the commander excel at?

I love using my commanders as a forward power house, equipped to take down anything and everything that crosses their path from AV14 to monsterous creatures to whatever, to perform both in shooting and close combat. Can this be done with the commander or is he better used elsewhere?

I was contemplating a Captain with purity seals, terminator honors, master crafted power fist, melta bolter combi gun, iron halo and adamantine cloak. Is that a reasonable setup, is sinking too many points into the commander or should something be changed for better results?
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Old 08 Nov 2005, 05:26   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Commander Job and Kit

I have been experimenting with heavy handed command units myself lately with mixed results. The biggest fear is sinking all those points into a single unit only to have it destroyed or even worse fail to fill it's intended role. Placement and mobility seem to be the key to these types of units, wether your infiltrating, deepstriking, or charging forward with a rocket strapped to your butt you simply have to get this unit into combat immediately for them to actually earn there keep.

Things that I've found through playing testing...

Powerfists are great, only real draw back is the reduced initiative and believe it or not that actually can be a big problem. With the way assault rules work now it actually isn't too hard to have your commander facing 2-3 foes at once in melee. I've had my tooled up Cap killed by assault marines before he got a chance to do any real damage, bad rolls were involved on my part but it still hurt.

Power Weapons, I think the main reason you see lead units equipped with them more often is simply the look and availability of them. The powerfist isn't quite as "cool" as the power axe/sword. Functionally speaking I like being able to cause wounds that allow no armor saves... specially when they come into play before my opponent has a chance to retaliate.

As for the Iron Hale and Adamantine Mantle, I'm actually not sure if these two items can be used together. Mind you I'm not sitting with the codex in hand so I could be wrong. Even if they can be used together are you sure it's a wise expenditure of points, I understand wanting to protect your investment but you might be better served giving him some support with those points.

Closing remarks... just remember, that beefy commander might be hell on wheels but he needs to kill a 10 man squad of marines to earn back his points OR a few light vehicles. Both very possible so long as you place him in a position to assault by turn 3 at the latest. And don't forget I'm still fairly new to the game so take my advice with a grain of salt ;D
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Old 08 Nov 2005, 05:32   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Commander Job and Kit

The powerfist reduces the captain's high initiative. Go with a powersword, or for a real close combat monster get a pair of lightning claws. you can order them from the gw on-line store the sprue is available in the bits from the veteran box.
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Old 09 Nov 2005, 04:13   #4 (permalink)
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Quote
As for the Iron Hale and Adamantine Mantle, I'm actually not sure if these two items can be used together. Mind you I'm not sitting with the codex in hand so I could be wrong.
End Quote

They can't.

Whatever you do, give him a supporting squad. One turn of concentrated firepower could result in curtains for a very expensive character.
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Old 09 Nov 2005, 06:54   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Commander Job and Kit

lightning claw/stormbolter for a really simple commander option, who's also versatile. chuck on an iron halo if you feel particularly generous (the question of which is superior out of the iron halo and adamantine matle is an argument that could go all day...so i just go for the option i know

however, if you're just looking for a guide for tooling characters for combat (something i know a fair bit about), then this topic here might help you out a little
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Old 09 Nov 2005, 14:53   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Commander Job and Kit

'Alright well the more I look into space marines the more I wonder on certain things. Power fists have a marked advantage, doubling strength means that even a landraider is fair game, yet I see many commanders with power swords instead.'

Very simply, because characters can be picked out. They can't afford to be striking last.

'Terminator sergeants have power swords instead of fists despite the apparent advantage of the fist.'

Again, thats pretty simple. It's because you already have enough Fists in the squad, this 1 sword allows you to reduce the amount of attacks coming at your Termies before the majority get to use their Fists.

With Marines, the Force commander now plays more of the classic commander role like you see in Fantasy. Providing higher LD.

I don't think you should go too overboard with regular Marine commanders, they aren't all powerful combat monsters [other armies do this much better. Bear in mind, im talking about Vanilla Marines here]. I think just a few pieces of equipment in order to give a Marine squad that extra punch is all you need.

Now, if your taking a command squad, you may as well go all the way and tool your character out.

If you want combat and dont mind about cost. Pick a Librarian.

If you want a cheap combat character, go with the Chaplian.

If you want a commander in the true sense of the word, then go with the force commander.

'I was contemplating a Captain with purity seals, terminator honors, master crafted power fist, melta bolter combi gun, iron halo and adamantine cloak. Is that a reasonable setup, is sinking too many points into the commander or should something be changed for better results?'

That is an aweful lot of points for a character that can be killed before he even gets to attack in combat. Now, I normally wouldnt invest all those points in a Mantle AND a Halo, BUT as your character will always strike last due to the Fist, it is a better investment than it normally would be. Still, Fists should go on squad Sarges, not characters that can be picked out. You are just wasting the high initiative that characters have. Still, if you really want one, then definatley keep the Mantle, Halo or both. I dont think the combi Melta is worth it, you only get to shoot the Melta once and you are losing an attack for it. If you play a defensive army, then your character is too kitted out anyway. If your playing an attacking army, then you will want the extra attack. He already has his Fist for tank killing. I also think master crafting is a bit of a bad deal. Termie honours are worth it though.
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Old 09 Nov 2005, 17:04   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Commander Job and Kit

I try to stay farily cheap with my commander- just a powersword, bolt pistol, infiltrate and artificer armor.

Standard stuff but get him in the thick of it with 2 other infiltrating units and his performance has been brilliant so far in the playoffs we run. He's averaging over 150pts/game with only close combat kills, and is the leading candidate for league MVP.

Go owls!!

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Old 10 Nov 2005, 12:26   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Commander Job and Kit

Well. I make my commander fairly cheap. I give him the stormbolter and lightning claw and puts him into an infiltrating command squad. I never use artificer armor on him due to the majority save rule. The high leadership he provides the squad together with the cc skills, he is good to push the squad forward.
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Old 10 Nov 2005, 18:27   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Commander Job and Kit

Well, majority save doesn't hurt artificer armor:

1. In shooting, it will only mean that the power armored models take saves before the artificer armor model, not that the artificer armor is reduced to 3+

2. In assault, the IC counts as a separate unit anyway.

The real reason to scorn artificer armor is AP2/power weaponry.* Artificer isn't cheap, and it doesn't come with an invulnerable save the way tactical dreadnaught armor does.* Lascannons and poweraxes treat 3+ and 2+ armor saves the same way.* The chance that you will roll a 2 against a non-AP wound does not, IMNSHO, justify the cost of artificer armor.* For a nickel more, you can ride first class.* Get termie armor instead, and save the expense of the halo.*

Or, do as I do and combine the halo with power armor for the most points-effective solution.


/edit/

Actually, I have two commanders. One wears termie armor, the sword of secrets, and a stormbolter, and rides in a crusader with 1 thunderhammer, one sergeant, and 4-5 sets of lightning claws.

The other one takes lightning claw, storm bolter, and halo.

Obviously the first one only sees duty in 2k+ point games. The second one sees 1k points and below. In between, I take a librarian.
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Old 10 Nov 2005, 18:31   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Commander Job and Kit

I take Artificer armor because it's fluffy for my chapter to use ancient and exotic wargear(Mentors), and I'm staying WYSIWYG with my commander model. Plus the guy can infiltrate, and I guess someone would really have to upset me for me to model a halo on him!

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