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Battleforces, which one is a better start?
View Poll Results: Which one is better for a core force and cost efficient aswell?
Battleforce Mk 2 14 58.33%
Mega Battleforce 10 41.67%
Voters: 24. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02 Aug 2006, 03:27   #1 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Battleforces, which one is a better start?

Well now that Im heading off to college soon I had a thought. Lugging my 2250pt mechanized Tau army around is a pain and something I dont think I want to be doing at college. So this is a good time to start marines as Ive always wanted to do. The battleforces are a good start it would seem. But now with the new mk 2 battleforce which is quite a bit different than the old one the question comes down to what gets me the most for my money and which one gives a good starting force. For those of you who dont already know the contents and costs of the boxes are as follows:

Mega Battleforce $160
Commander Box (commander and assorted equipment)
Command Squad (apothicary, champion, standard bearer, marine and veteran serg)
Terminator Box (5 terminators)
Tactical Box (10 marines)
Tactical marine squad box (5 marines and razorback)

Battleforce Mk 2 $90
Tactical Box (10 marines)
Combat squad (5 marines)
Rhino
Assault box (5 assault marines)
Scout box (5 scouts)

Now the megaforce gives terminators which are deffinetly very cool and a sweet looking command squad and commander. The regular box does not have those things so I would already need to buy the $15 commander ontop of the 90 box if I chose that one. However Im not sure terminators and a tooled out command squad are really that effective for a starting "core" army. The megaforce gives one HQ, 2 Troops and an Elite, not that much even with a transport. The battleforce however gives 3 Troops and a Fast attack aswell as a transport. Onto which I think Id add a predator and a commander which would give me (at 15 bucks cheaper than the megaforce) 1 HQ, 1 Heavy, 3 Troops and 1 Fast attack. Not bad for a starting core army. I wouldnt have the cool command squad or terminators but really, for an army below 1k pts even below 1.5k how useful are such things? Free vps in my experience.

Thus the question comes down to which option of battleforces is the most cost effective and useful for a core force. I mean Im no fan of scouts but for a starting force the regular battleforce is looking nice. Especially as I already have 10 macragge box marines (soon to be 20 as I need to get another for the rulebook) to that army which would be a nice solid, infantry heavy army to start with. Easy to carry and decently sized.

The only other option would be to just go with the marines from the macragge boxes and if my bro gets a subscription to white dwarf as he wants to then Id get Sicarius' model, 2 Troops and an HQ enough to get started for now though it wouldnt look to sharp.

So what do you SM players of TO think is the better option to go with?
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Old 02 Aug 2006, 04:45   #2 (permalink)
Shas'Ui
 
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Default Re: Battleforces, which one is a better start?

Well if you want a basic force,get the newer battle force without the terminators and HQ.That really gives you 3 troops and 1 fast attack,all you need is an HQ,a heavy like you said,and maybe a dread or speeder.
This would be a simple force.If you got this you would have a pretty decent sized army.Termis are all right but you can add those later if you want.
This would be cost efficient too.

Didn't know they switched the battle force again either.Better contents I think this time.
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Old 02 Aug 2006, 04:58   #3 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: Battleforces, which one is a better start?

Heya,

Hard choice really. Depends what kind of army you want. Here's my take on both the boxes:

Quote:
Mega Battleforce $160
Commander Box (commander and assorted equipment)
Command Squad (apothicary, champion, standard bearer, marine and veteran serg)
Terminator Box (5 terminators)
Tactical Box (10 marines)
Tactical marine squad box (5 marines and razorback)
The commander box is a given, he's cool to have. But do you really need him instead of a chaplain or librarian? Is there something else you could use as an HQ or are you heart set on this particular boxed model? He's great, lots of bits, but the price can be a question. Up to you.

Command Squad - Probably the most wasteful expenditure of points you can manage in marines. I really wouldn't bother. The only way I'd bother, is by converting these models into squad champions. The good news, is that they're plastic, and the bits frame includes a powerful and more special weapons. You could consider this as just more marines (don't bother with a tricked out command squad) with more weapons to put in your marine core. This could be good or bad, depending how you view it (considering the cost of this box compared to number of models, then compare that to the normal tac box. The tac box is just better--the cost the same yet have twice as many marines in the tac box.)

Terminator box is a great thing to get. Personally, I'd take more marines any day (or veteran marines!) but if you like Terminators, then this is a good thing.

Tactical box is great. The host of weapons you get in this setup is just awesome. You can work out all kinds of things from them.

The tactical marine squad box, is just a waste. Razorbacks are not worth it. I wouldn't buy one. And 5 marines to buffer the cost of the Razorback to get people to buy it? Nah. I would call this a negative strike.

*** That's literally about $70 retail worth of stuff in this box, you could really do without, if not a bit more (US).

[hr]

Quote:
Battleforce Mk 2 $90
Tactical Box (10 marines)
Combat squad (5 marines)
Rhino
Assault box (5 assault marines)
Scout box (5 scouts)
The tactical marines are perfect, as above. Good assortment.

Combat squad is decent, but really not prime either.

The rhino is up to you. I really really would not buy it to start out. You can get a lot better things in this army other than this steel coffin. They can be useful to help block line of sight, but as a transport, rhinos just aren't doing what they used to. Anyhow, don't let that steer you away, but you'll notice a stark difference in life span between your Rhino and a Devilfish and you'll probably not like the taste of the rhino. Sadly, penetrable and non-scoring dead points. And you really don't want entangled marines standing about. It's good for mobile 4+ cover saves though.

Assault marines are great. But price wise, you pay twice the price ($$) per model than a tac squad.

Scouts can be great. If you like them, this is good. If you're not into more 4+ saving troops, then this is bad.

*** A good $30 retail is not so hot in this box set (US), more if you don't like scouts.

[hr]

So in the end, honestly, I wouldn't suggest you buy either. Both contain units you may or may not want. That's not a good thing. It's not like the Ork or Necron box which comes with usefull units that you want, from start to finish. These boxes contain some flashy things and some core things. The flashy stuff being good or bad, but mostly bad here (terminators are flashy, but decent).

Here's what I would suggest, to build from:

1x Tactical Marine box
1x Tactical Marine box
1x Tactical Marine box
1x Commander

Retail on those, individually in US prices is still very low. You cannot beat a core of 30 marines to boot. These marines build more than just troops. They're HQ command squads, Elite Veterans, Troops, Fast attack (remove jump pack option**) and heavy support (devs). That's just great. Do it all right there.

Each tactical box contains: 1x Plasmagun, 2x Plasma Pistols, 1x Meltagun, 1x Flamer, 1x Missile Launcher.

The plasma pistols can be used to create fast attack marines if you wish, or you can save them for Sergs and HQs.
The plasma guns can be used in Command Squads, who double up assuault guns without traits.
The meltagun can be fielded wherever you want, but typically you'd save it for mobile teams (command squads usually).
The flamer can be put anywhere, or not used at all, up to you.
The missile launcher can be doubled up (up to 2) in the HQ command squad, Vets or can be fielded in Dev squads (heavy).

Traits allow you to do a lot more with these, such as veteran skills, how you field the guns, and where they're fielded.

-- Out of the box, you just covered 3x anti-tank guns (missiles with tank hunters = Str9 shots), you picked up a healthy load of plasma, meltas and flamers. You built a large core of bodies, with all the killy power you need for most targets.

-- After this core, you can easily build on the expensive flashy stuff, which includes: terminators, assault marines, land speeders, predators, etc.

I would highly suggest going with blocks of marines first though. Build up that weaponry for cheap. When you start trying to buy blisters, or small boxes of vehicles, and specialty marines, the price per model goes through the roof. But the basic boxes can be used to make all those blisters, without buying them--and they're plastic. If you're interested in saving a lot of cash, this is how you do it. No conversion required.

** Your next-in-line purchase if you need mobility would be better in the form of Assault Marines. They move fast, they're marines, and they're not dead penetrable armor. Land Speeders are nice, very nice, but a single land speeder ($$) costs the same as a box of assault marines. Not cost effective in terms of real world price tags. Otherwise, predators are awesome for mobile scoring units.

This way, everything is useful, no wasted models and you even get extra bits.

Then buy the extra stuff, as you build on to it.

Cheers!
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Old 02 Aug 2006, 06:17   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Battleforces, which one is a better start?

All good points mal. Ive blown up enough rhinos in my day to know their nearly useless as transports but as mobile terrain they are rather handy. The assualt marines and tacticals are what cought my eye.

Something else to consider is the battleforce is currently advance order, and I also see on the UK site an advanced order new mega battleforce that includes:

Commander, command squad, tac squad, combat squad, assault marines, dread, pred, razorback and sniper scouts. For 100 euros. http://uk.games-workshop.com/storefr...046&orignav=10

Im mostly interested in the battleforces because they do save some money though each one does contain things that arent that useful, the razorback, rhino, command squad and scouts for instance. Even the terminators arent that useful at least not yet.

However I do have 10 marines already from the macragge set and probably will have 10 more soon and maybe the captain sicarius model. See now Im leaving my brother and I cant share the same rulebook and the BFM one is simply so much easier to carry around that I think we will just buy another BFM box and sell off the nids like we did last time. Thats already 20 marines, no bits but a good solid 20 marines. If I was going to go from scratch Id use the commander box (Ive considered other HQs but the leadership of the commander seems a good start) an assault squad, predator and another tactical box. Giving me an commander, 30 marines, 5 assault marines and a pred but thats not too balanced with only one vehicle. Thus Im thinking about just getting the megaforce. It does save some money in the long run and with the bulk of standard marines added to it...

Decisions, decisions and lots of things to consider. The cost effectiveness of each option is something to consider as either way there is more dead weight than seems worth it. Each battleforce has things that arent that useful and otherwise gathering up the army isnt so easy adding to what I already have as the macragge marines really do kinda suck.

Also I have roughly $180 to start with, Id like to not spend all of it as its the last of my current funds though with college starting my income may rise Im not sure.

Something else Im considering is getting the current standard battleforce (although it still has the command squad, dunno why that was ever included) and adding a commander and predator to that. Two vehicles, the HQ and a nice supply of troops. Not as well rounded as Id like but a good start at least. Thursday Ill be able to see whats available at my local GW which is another thing to consider.
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Old 02 Aug 2006, 11:48   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Battleforces, which one is a better start?

Quote:
Also I have roughly $180 to start with, Id like to not spend all of it as its the last of my current funds though with college starting my income may rise Im not sure.
Ok, this confuses me. Most people that go to college usually have less money than they would normally have, at least until they graduate. I know thats what I'm going through right now.

However I would say that of the two the 90$ one is the better bet. It doesn't seem to have anything that would truly be a waste as even the rhino could be useful, and 3 troop choices to start out with isn't a bad thing. I do wish that instead of 2 squads at 5 strong (not counting the assault marines) that they would have just put in one 10 man squad of either scouts or another full 10 man squad of marines. Its still better than the last one though (why would they give you a command squad with no commander, libbie or chappie?)
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Old 02 Aug 2006, 13:30   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Battleforces, which one is a better start?

I'm in favor of the mega force, but there is method to my madness. I love to convert and paint

I always use the chapter master myself, so yes I like the commander.

The command squad is good for making sergeants, and if you want a librarian out of the apothicary.

The razorback is worthless on the table except when facing hordes, but you can make a convertable rhino. Rhinos are good at hiding a small squad in and rushing out to sieze an objective at the last minute.

Terminators are, well, terminators. you like them or hate them, but teleportation works in small areas unlike DS. Assault cannons are the bomb in 40k, since rending is so powerful. I like them myself, but they are expensive.

with the tac sqd and the tac box and command squad, you'll have 19 SM (2 full or 3 partial squads). A converted librarian, and a chaptermaster make the headcount 21.

The BF box gives 15 sm, 5 scouts, and 5 Assault SM. Oh and a rhino. OK except the assault marines are expensive (though you can remove the jump pack and have SM with Bpistol and CCW AND grenades for the cost of a regular SM. Nice in city of death battles (can you say tunnel rats). But overall, you will have a less flexible force.


Mal's suggestion is always an alternative, go with a solid core of vanilla SM. This is what I did, but I know the love of getting a big chrismas box of joy has it's appeal

I play a very vanilla SM army. Here is what I have as an example to judge your own ideas from:

Chapter master with blah blah blah depends on kit of the week
2x10 SM with 1 flamer, 8 bolters, 1 boltpistol/powerweapon SGT each
1x6 SM devistators with 3 Missile launchers and 3 boltpistols
1x5 Assault marines with Bpistol and CCW, SGT with powerfist
1x5 Terminators with 2 assault cannons, stormbolters
1x vindicator, smoke, extra armor
1x rhino, smoke
2x drop pods

Hope this helps.

Wanax
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Old 02 Aug 2006, 14:02   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Battleforces, which one is a better start?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vash113
Decisions, decisions and lots of things to consider. The cost effectiveness of each option is something to consider as either way there is more dead weight than seems worth it. Each battleforce has things that arent that useful and otherwise gathering up the army isnt so easy adding to what I already have as the macragge marines really do kinda suck.
Heya,

Just remember, this isn't Tau. Dreadnoughts are not cheap. You pay a premium for a walking penetrable A12 beast with a linked gun. It shoots well, it moves and it can do some assault (if it ever sees assault). Some people swear by Dreadnoughts, but personally, I find dreadnoughts to be pretty much point sinks, unless they're podding, or unless you have a lot of higher priority vehicles in the army. Point in case, if you had 2 predators and a vindicator, then the Dreadnought could be useful as it would only see shots later in the game. If you only have a single tank, a transport and a Dreadnought, well, expect it to be dropped turn one, if not two. Some may tell you that you can make it venerable, to give it survivability, but mind, penetrated armor is penetrated armor. Re-rolling that dice is just a 50/50 odds of being destroyed either way. And doing that, is only increasing the cost of your Dreadnought by more than 20% in the process, at least. So when you ask about cost effectiveness, I wouldn't call a Dreadnought one.

Predators are cost effective. Higher armor, more guns, more mobility and usually a similar and often times cheaper cost than a good portion of dreadnoughts out there. 8x Shots from a single tank is lovely. Your tanks aren't so hot for killing other tanks, like in Tau. Tanks in marines are far better at mowing infantry, and tend to last longer without being covered in lascannons which scream for a penetrating shot to ruin your day.

Rhinos & Razorbacks pile up. However, don't be discouraged. A small bits order can land you a Predator turret and sponsons. Instant battle tanks. I would highly recommend you look into converting them into Predators. Or, even convert one of them into a Whirlwind. You can order the spare bits easily, relatively cheap, cheaper than a tank. And suddenly, you have better options than tin cans.

Assault marines are cost effective in my opinion. They're a big part of mobility in marines now, with transports not really making their old debut. Small bands of marines with a big BS4 gun simply do great, while large mobs of marines move around with assault guns. All the while, the assault marines move all over the place. Marines that move fast without penetrable armor is great. Even a basic squad with no upgrades of 6 men is a great buy.

Scouts, in my opinion, are not cost effective. They're useful, but their cost to buy, cost to field, and resilience are not something to boast about. Their weapon options are limited as well, with expensive sniper rifles (you will pay a huge price if you go all out), a single heavy bolter or a single missile. Well, the missile is a waste, in my opinion, and the heavy bolter can be fielded elseware, all too easily. So the only thing scouts have going for them is infiltration and sniper rifles. The rest can be done better, by other units. Even then, traits can allow your marines to do all these things (except the sniper rifles) so either way you look at it, scouts are just sniper rifle platforms, and the rest can be accomplished by another unit, which is generally better at it. Scouts are often used to lead assaults in heavy terrain boards, but really, do you want more 4+ saving infantry after dealing with FireWarriors? Useful unit, but not cost effective, in my opinion.

-- Just a note, on balance. A single vehicle won't be balanced. But every vehicle you take, isn't like taking one in Tau. Skimmers get stunned. Tanks get penetrated. You know the protocol. So think about being the guy on the other end of the table, where your A11, 12 and 13 is all too easily penetrated, instead of your comfortable glances that you're used to. I would be wary to build up another tank/mechanized force, when it's not a skimmer one. And on that note, so long a you rig most of your vehicles for anti-infantry support, cheaply as possible, you will have a better time with them, than if you load them up and slow them down with lascannons.

Cheers!
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Old 02 Aug 2006, 19:41   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Battleforces, which one is a better start?

Yea Im all too familiar with the workings and failings of SM and IG tanks after smoking scores of them with my Tau. Thus Im already considering using the heavy weapons that come with the marines to form a devastator squad and either use no vehicles or at least 3. SM tanks dont get the nice glances only but higher AV helps. Dreads are cool but their strengths minimal, Ive popped a ton of them from time to time. Another unit that looks fierce on paper but in actuality isnt too great and not hard to destroy even with modest weapons. Heck my brothers guardians have bagged a few of these in their day.

Im considering the battleforce simply because of how rounded it is and its cost. Ontop of which I might add both a commander box and jump pack chaplain to lead the assault marines. Two HQs may seem heavy but with that and another BFM for the rulebook Ill have 35 marines, 5 assault marines, and 5 scouts led by a master captain (for leadership) and a chaplain. The rhino Ill probably shelf for later use and the idea to get a Predator sprue deffinetly sounds like a good plan. Or maybe a whirlwind to keep the limited armor back and out of sight.

The battleforce gives variety and numbers which is good for a simple core start and the HQs would firm that up and I dont have to always field both of them. Im also considering trying to bits order another jump pack, maybe shrikes for the commander. Jump packs do offer a great deal of mobility and I especially hate jump pack chaplains and canoness' who make a mess of my Tau firelines if they can get close enough.

Ive fought SM extensively of all types, Dark Angels, Blood Angels, Space Wolves, Vanilla, tons of Trait chapters, 13th company and even a few Deathwing and Ravenwing type armies. Now making the leap from fighting them to fighting as them is interesting. Ive seen everything that doesnt work now Im trying to find what will work and what my styles are.

From what Ive found infantry heavy isnt a bad way to go especially early on. Marines are easy to kill, 50+ are not until you get into fairly large battles. Thus Im thinking of just using a core of marines, devastators, assault etc and then adding other things later.

Scouts may not be great but they could be useful until I replace them with something else. Infiltrating to form bolter traps or what not.

Battleforce, commander and maybe a chaplain and codex. Other than that a few paints and then chosing the weapon options and all is set.
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