Thursday, November 15, 2012
Flyers in 6th pt 1 - A introduction
If you have played a dozen or more games at this point of 6th edition you know that Flyers are a new dynamic that has to be considered both on the battle field and when list building. The flyer has really changed up the game in terms of balance and mobility. Let's talk a moment about this concept.
List building in general normally has you building toward a goal, and I want to say that no one goal is correct per say it comes down to your playstyle and what you enjoy about the gaming experience. You can list build toward the meta, toward balance, toward tabling, toward theme, toward the missions you will be playing. All are different strategies that can be used to format your tool box toward the end result you are looking for. As always you have to consider many things when list building Scoring, durability, support, long range, mobility, and much more. These are tools you want in your army. In 5th edition you had to be able to deal with Mech heavy builds, while having the tools needed to score your own objectives for example. In 6th edition most of this hasn't changed only because of how transports work we now also need to consider durability (you must be outside your metal box of safety to grab objectives) and flyers. I could write several articles on the concepts of list building in general but let's get back to the flyers.
The Flyers has some very strong things going for it.
Flyers allow you to reach out and touch a majority for the table with ease. The ability to move long distances and still be able to fire your weapons as needed means you can get to high priority targets with ease barring very few exceptions.
Snap fire means most units will need a 6 to even hit a flyer. For the most part only other flyers have skyfire, and flakk is very rare in the game still. Now you add in the fact that you can also evade giving your flying units a free cover save and these things will surprise you sometimes at how hard they are to bring down. On top of that you will have them flying off the table making them untouchable for some turns of the game until the next turn they fly back on.
These are two of the major things to keep in mind with these new editions to the game. Flyers have draw backs as well, for example carrying troops in them is extremely risky. While you get the nice speed and mobility for units you have to special Disembark which is un reliable, or you have to go into hover mode making your flyers skimmers for the most part. Although you could argue that being able to go from hover mode to zooming mode is also a perk of some flyers instead. They also don't general count for missions depending on your area of course. The NOVA format for example didn't count any transports toward table quarters, and you of course can't claim objectives while inside them. The largest draw back is that they only pivot 90 degrees and have to move at least 18 inches. This means you have to use some planning when moving them about the table...
The point of all this is that you need to have a plan for flyers when going in they are apart of the game and they aren't going anyplace any time soon. There is no easy loop hole to exploit to easily deal with them and if you run into two or more and can't kill them in a turn or two you may have lost the game if you don't have a plan.
So how do we deal with Flyers? First off we need to look at the common flyers we are going to see to have an idea what we are dealing with. So in pt 2 we will take a look at the flyer options in a majority of Codex's we run into.. Stay Tuned.