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Squadron armament
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Old 15 Dec 2006, 14:26   #1 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Squadron armament

I have been slowly amassing a small squadron of FW SM aircraft. I currently have one Vulture and two Valkyries, which are in parts right now. I want to get one more Valkyrie so I can throw enough *troops onto the field to really cause problems. Three Valks and a Vulture, I can't wait.

So before I start gluing bits on (I already have researched and tested my paint patterns) which weapons should I be putting on? Bombs? Missiles? Lascannon? Is there a balanced weapon set I can parse for the the three/four platforms?

I usually play Tau, so I am a bit under informed on the SM air deployed munitions. Regards,


*Vostroyans
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Old 15 Dec 2006, 14:41   #2 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: Squadron armament

Can you make them interchangeable so that you can fit what you need when you need them?
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Old 15 Dec 2006, 14:52   #3 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: Squadron armament

I suppose a big enough magnet would hold anything.
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Old 15 Dec 2006, 15:18   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Squadron armament

Aren't those all Imperial Navy aircraft used to support Imperial Guard formations?

The only SM aircraft I know of are thunderhawks and their variants.

Sounds like a cool squadron though!
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Old 15 Dec 2006, 17:00   #5 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: Squadron armament

Quote:
Originally Posted by Falstead
Aren't those all Imperial Navy aircraft used to support Imperial Guard formations?

The only SM aircraft I know of are thunderhawks and their variants.
I'm a little baffled myself. The Vulture can be taken with a Space Marine army if you're fielding a Damocles, but I see no way to field a Valkyrie...are they Inquisitorial Valkyries for allied Inquisitorial Storm Troopers?

At any rate, I've been pondering such weapon options myself recently (I'm considering a Harakoni War Hawks army) and I've been experimenting with the different choices with my existing Vulture (flying in support of my Marines). I've become rather fond of Lascannons and Heavy Smart Bombs. It's second most expensive option they have, but it sure is effective at targeting enemy armour. However, I have found this configuration to be too expensive. By all means take one or the other, but not both.

There's no guarantee your Vulture will get all five attack runs; your opponent might get the first turn, it might not arrive on turn 2, it might fail a second strike roll, it could even be shot down. So if you take heavy bombs, don't be afraid to drop three at a time because you might not get to use them all otherwise.

The main advantage of flyers is their ability to attack from any direction. Coupled with the ability to attack any target, this is potentially devastating to enemy armour when you deploy more than one flyer. If you attack from opposite directions simultaneously, enemy vehicles will be forced to show their rear armour facing to one aircraft or the other (this also works in conjunction with ground forces to a lesser extent). Most vehicles have a rear armour facing of 10, so they're even fair game for the nose-mounted heavy bolter! Below is list of the liklihood of scoring a penetrating hit with the Vulture's (and Valkyrie's) various weapons against AV10

These values are based upon the 'Death from the skies' updated rules found in Imperial Armour 3:
[table]
[tr][td]Heavy Bolter[/td][td] [/td][td]25%[/td][td][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Twin-Linked ML (Krak)[/td][td] [/td][td]50%[/td][td][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Lascannon[/td][td] [/td][td]42%[/td][td][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Twin-Linked Lascannons[/td][td] [/td][td]63%[/td][td][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Twin-Linked Autocannons[/td][td] [/td][td]75%[/td][td][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Multi-laser[/td][td] [/td][td]50%[/td][td][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Twin-Linked Multi-lasers[/td][td] [/td][td]75%[/td][td][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Rocket Pods[/td][td] [/td][td]0%[/td][td][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Hunter Killer missiles[/td][td] [/td][td]50%[/td][td] (per missile)[/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Heavy Bombs[/td][td] [/td][td]33%[/td][td] (minimum, per bomb)[/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Heavy Smart Bombs[/td][td] [/td][td]56%[/td][td] (minimum, per bomb)[/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Hunter Killer missiles[/td][td] [/td][td]49%[/td][td] (per missile)[/td][/tr]
[/table]

Obviously, the best two standard weapons for the Vulture (for destroying tanks in this aerial 'pincer movement&#39 are the TL Multi-lasers and TL Autocannons. However, you can make a horrifying mess of enemy armour by launching all six hunter killer missiles into their rear armour in a oner; averaging out at three penetrating hits. Don't overlook the ordnance weapons though; while expensive, heavy bombs (and heavy smart bombs) not only get to roll on the ordnance penetrating hit table, but they'll also turn any nearby infantry into mush. Hellstrike missiles however, under the new rules, can defeat AV10 up to AV14 with only slightly diminishing effectiveness. These are budget weapons though because you only get a couple of them.

You should also consider how you will be using your Vulture. Will it be hovering to lay down covering fire? If so, bombs are somewhat redundant and you'd be better off with something you can fire while in VTOL mode. Needless to say, your enemy and the terrain should influence your decisions too. If there's a lot of cover on the table (think Cities of Death), then incendiary bombs are order of the day. If you expect to face a lot of 4+ saves and low vehicle armour values (eg. Eldar), then perhaps Autocannons are for you?

But whatever you do, no matter how tempting it may be, or how iconic an image it is, don't load up with four Rocket Pods! Eight templates sounds like a lot, but with an average Ballistic Skill, average weapon Strength and a rubbish AP value, all those explosions amount to surprisingly little. If they used the pie-plate, or cost half as much, it'd be a different story...but all those points for a couple weak small template chuckers just doesn't work out.
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When all was finished, the battlefield was a smoking crater. UDC, Valoran, US Army, Tau, the Nazis, a random pirate ship, and a bunch of ninjas, all were enemies to the Vulture. All were turned into scrap metal. Or plastic. Depends which game system you play.
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Old 15 Dec 2006, 17:56   #6 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: Squadron armament

An outstanding reply, sir, and just what I was looking for.

My eBay purchases had arrived with a rather heterogenuous collection of ordnance, hence the question. Oddly enough, I do have four rocket pods, which appear to be the least effective thing I could hang off a hardpoint, dangit.

Bombs I do have, and alpha striking a formation of vehicles with same (or smart bombs) seems like the way to go, especially given my opponents lately.

Hmm maybe I should have posted this in the IG forums, given your responses. FWIW I happen to fight Inquisitors too often as it is, and no way am I painting up I type aircraft for that person to borrow. These would probably be in support of my IG-in-being, i.e. a Vostroyan CAS group.

If a mod would move this to the IG forum, that would remove some confusion, and my apologies but Tom, you rock, sir. Regards,
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Old 15 Dec 2006, 18:00   #7 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: Squadron armament

You're welcome.
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When all was finished, the battlefield was a smoking crater. UDC, Valoran, US Army, Tau, the Nazis, a random pirate ship, and a bunch of ninjas, all were enemies to the Vulture. All were turned into scrap metal. Or plastic. Depends which game system you play.
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