Monday, February 15, 2010

Valentines Day wishes and a word about Orks

Happy Valentines Day everyone!

Ok.. on to Orks.

At first glance you would think that Orks are a simple army to play and fundamentally they are. However, after you get behind the wheel of these green behemoths you will find that there is a lot more in the way of bookwork/accounting that you will have to manage.

Now I won't go into a tactica about Orks here. You would be much better off at Dark Future Games "How to Build an Ork Army" by Culler. A six part list that breaks down every thing you need to know about Orks and how to make them go. I am more talking about how they actually play on the battlefield which can be in a word "exhausting"

This all comes on the heels of last Friday's gayme night. Wanting to give my Iggys a rest for a bit I decided to break out the green (or in my case grey) tide. My arm list was something like this

- Power Klaw
- Heavy Armor
- Bosspole
- Twin linked big shoota


Nobs x10
- x2 big choppas
- Painboy
- 'Eavy armor

Boyz (3 groups of 20)
- Nob with Power Klaw and Bosspole

Burna Boyz x15

Lootas x10
- Mekboyz w/ Mega Blasters x2

Fast Attack
Da Vulcha Skqad x10
- Zagstruk

Now the first thing that you are going to say is "Eric didn't read Culler's list," and you would be right. I didn't read the list before I bought my Orks. What you see here is a list of what I actually have which was bought on a "well this looks cool" principal. I will be slowly correcting this over the next few months.

The tactics are straight forward and to the point.
Step 1) Run up board
Step 2) Place Power Klaw A into opponent B
Step 3) Make profit.

It all looks so easy on paper but when you have to move those 90+ models down the board it can really get drawn out, I don't care how fast you are. Then there is the combat.

Orkish combat is surprisingly more tactical than I thought. You basically have a 1 for 1 squad kill ratio. By the time you get them to where you want them actually IN CC and killed off your target there probably wont be enough of them to carry on in any sort of effective capacity.

If that wasn't enough you then have to take into account at what phase of CC you are in thanks to furious charge. On the charge they act like space marines but if you are unlucky enough to get into a 2nd round of melee with your intended target they deflate to Eldar/IG str models with Necron initiative. This wouldn't be so taxing if it was just one group a'la the Death Company from the Blood Angels but its your ENTIRE army. The problem only compounds itself when you have multiple assaults or even worse when those assaults come on the same unit in different turns. Toss in mob rule for flavor and you have a potential logistics nightmare.

For example ( this happened last week) :

1)Warboss/Nob squad and Boyz Squad A charged a Grey Knights Purgation squad with a Grand Master. The Grand Master has I5 so goes first and kills off my Warboss in one shot with his force weapon ( which is lame BTW ). Nobs and GK go next with an I of 4 and start beating the tar out of each other. Boyz Squad A goes with I3 and then I1 for the Power Klaw. The GKs are beaten down but not dead and they don't run.

2)Next turn Grand Master/GKs go at I5/I4 again, then Nobs at I3 and Boyz Squad A at I2 and I1. By some cruddy luck they route my Nobs (because the don't have enough for Mob Rule) but Boyz Squad A still has enough to remain fearless so they stick around.

3)Turn 3 rolls around and Boyz Squad A is joined by Boyz Squad B. So now you have 2 identical groups with very different stat lines. Grand Master/GKs go at I5/I4 Boyz Squad A at I2 and I1 and Boyz Squad B at I3 and I1. Thankfully it ended there as the Power Klaws were able to finish off the Grand master.

The example above was just initiative. The strength of my Orks were constantly in flux as well as the # of attacks due to the charge and consolidation rules. Needless to say this was a very daunting task to keep track of.

Now don't get me wrong, I love my greenskins. They ooze with personality and if you work it right you can steamroll anything that stands in your way. I only suggest to take the following precautions:

1) Make sure you have enough time to play.
Regardless of how you field your orks its going to take a bit of time to move them around and work out CC. Having a patient opponent is a plus.

2) Bring cheat sheets
After last weeks game I am going to spend the time making some flashcards with my Orks stats on them both before and after the charge. That way I don't have to keep going back to my army list/codex to find all of the rules. A special rules card will help too for those odd ducks like the Shokk Attack Gun and Wyerdboy psyker powers.

3) Bring counters for actions
I need to make a batch of these as well in case I get into another mosh pit in the middle of the board. Considering that I am running with a heavy foot slogging force its inevitable.

Well thats it for today I hope that this helps my fellow greenies in the future. As always questions and comments are always welcome.

Have a good one

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