By the end of 2013 I had a nice pile of Dark Angel units, but they were largely unbuilt and unpainted and just not usable in a game. Also, I had no overarching plan for them and just picking up whatever strikes my fancy is something I have found to be a bad approach. I needed to come up with an outline so I could stop "acquiring" and start "using".
So ... what makes Dark Angels interesting?
- Well Deathwing terminators are cool, but I already have an army of those. Because they are painted up as Imperial Fists I can't really use the new heavily-iconographied DA mini's with them either. What was I thinking?
- Ravenwing is cool but I don't know that I want an all-biker army. plus both of the 'wing armies require taking a 200 point special character to make their focus unit a troops choice. that makes playing smaller games a real pain and we do that sometimes. With the Deathwing I already have to say no to pretty much anything under 1000 points. Why set myself up for that again?
- Pure Greenwing is too much like my existing marine armies. It's not dependent on characters but that means my core troops are tac marines and scouts - just like my Crimson Fists and my Howling Griffons. If that's the best I can do I might as well sell this stuff and use the money to expand the Fists!
I kept coming back to Azrael. Sure it's another 200 point character but he makes "triplewing" an option. How about a base force of Azrael and a librarian for HQ's, with 2 tactical squads, 2 Ravenwing squads, and 2 Terminator squads as troops? That's pretty flexible and for smaller battles I can still use the tacs with the librarian. For others I can bring in the full mix. I already have a Landspeeder typhoon squadron and a pair of Predators painted up in the color scheme so if I can get this core force set up I have a pretty decent army ready to go.
This is the plan:
- HQ = Azrael, librarian, and I'll probably paint up a chaplain too just because I have them. I will also be adding a command squad - a foot one for now. I will probably mount it in a Razorback for some extra firepower.
- Elites: Two dreadnoughts for now - because I have them and every marine army should have dreads. Even if they don't see a ton of action.
- Troops: two tactical squads in rhinos, two full ravenwing attack squads, and two deathwing squads
- Fast Attack: Ravenwing support squadron of three speeders
- Heavy Support: two predators, two devastator squads - I like to have some options.
A lot of these choices are because I have them already. That's already over 2500 points built out so it's not a small army. I would like to add some options down the road. Deathwing Knights in a Land Raider Crusader sound good, some Black Knights sound good, I might add in an assault squad that was earmarked for the Blood Angels just to have the option to take it, a Darkshroud and a third Ravenwing squadron aren't bad ideas either.
|Army in a box ... and some bags
|Predators are fairly far along but that yellow has got to go
|Typhoons are ready to go
I'm also going to experiment with a 5-man assault squad with 2 flamers. They are mobile enough to get around the board, small enough to not be a threat, and cheap enough (at 95 points) to be expendable. I can see a use for them though in burning things out of cover and thinning out hordes. I can also see krak and melta grenades giving me another way to take out a vehicle besides the MMAB's. So it's a really cheap mobile, dual-purpose unit.
Next time: building some individual units.