Sunday, November 7, 2010

DE: Heat Lance vs Blaster (on Reaver Jetbikes)

So, the debate. Little blurb (more thinking out loud than anything else, but if anyone has an opine to share, please do).

Heat Lance;
Str6, AP-1 (range 18).
Str-8, AP-2 (range 18).

Both have their uses, and with the speed of Reavers armour facing is only a small issue.

The lance has a distinct edge vs AV-12 and below (with a 2d6 curve result of 7, a 13 is statistically probable) and a slight edge vs AV-13 (due to the AP-1 granting a +1 on the damage chart).
With a base strength of 6, though, it begins to lose out (due to the same curve result of 7 imposing a statistical consistency of 13, resulting in a no-pen result).

The blaster has a true range advantage of 9" (no need for half-range maximum efficiency) and a Str edge of +2.
This has the advantage of;
Instant Death vs multi wound T-4 (Nob Bikerz come to mind), greater wound consistency vs T-5+ units, and fewer opportunities for opposing bubble-wrap protection.

The problem is multi-faceted.
Quantity; every additional weapon beyond the first is a minimal unit increase of 75-77pts, and a maximum of 3 weapons..coupled with a unit that can be broken with little firepower commitment. With that in mind, I see a maximum yield (for points efficiency) of 2 weapons.
Investment; these units will die after performing their duty. With frailty of T and Sv, and a max leadership of 9, you can kill/break them fairly easily prior to a pain token being acquired. As the loadout I have is for vehicle popping, odds are you will have to set up a character start or retain the vulnerabilities.
Duality; in a Vehicle killing role, or with a lack of expensive upgrades, a single splinter-rifle on non-lance/blaster equipped bike does not encourage a dual-purpose role for these bikers.


  1. I've been playing around with the blaster more due to the reasons stated above (survivability and dualality). With the DE JSJ ability combined with cover saves and skilled rider and possibly FNP the survivability isn't such an issue and after the vehicle is destroyed they can turbo boost and use their bloodvanes on any infantry. While not great dualality I don't think it's terrible.

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  3. I don't think they are a [i]bad[i] duality unit either, now that I've played them with c-caltrops and had a few boost-overs...

    I DO think the Reavers may not wholly fit a competitive build though, more due to MEQ/Mech builds than anything else. With my newest lists I have eschewed their use wholly in favor of beast elements.