This is the shortest section in the book, with but three unit choices. Which is why I decided to write this post late on a Tuesday.
Lets crack on.
Just as the Chaos Marine is an evil Tactical Marine, so is the Raptor an evil Assault Marine. They have the same stats as an Assault Marine, but like the Chaos Marine, sacrifice And They Shall Know No Fear for an extra point of leadership. Like Assault Marines, they are more than slightly lacklustre in assault. So, where do they fit in.
Like with many units in this Codex, they can take more than one special weapon in a five man squad. And, like with Assault Marines, they have Jump Packs, and so can Deep Strike. Put these two glorious facts together, and you’ve got yourself a cheap, dangerous Deep Striking anti-tank (meltaguns)/anti-MEQ (plasma guns)/anti-GEQ (Guardsman Equivalent, and Flamers) unit. As I have said before, remember to double up all the special weapons you take, just to make sure, as these guys will probably not last long, and you want to make sure they do their job.
I am also familiar with the idea of a unit (probably 10) of these guys bounding up the field with a Lord to provide a scary assault unit. As a Space Wolf player, I’m afraid I just don’t find it that scary, but anyone playing Guard, Tau or Eldar may very well have a problem with it.
Ah. This might be a bit less positive. Bike squad can work very well, don’t get me wrong, it’s just quite expensive to get them to work. For a start, you might as well give them the Mark of Nurgle so they get T6. I don’t think these guys are going anywhere anymore. Secondly, you’ll want to pick something you need these guys to kill, give them doubles of the appropriate weapon (meltagun/plasmagun/flamer), and send them out there. Then you’ll need enough ablative wounds to keep them going (a 5-6 man squad should do the trick). And finally, you’ll need to try to keep the thought that a couple of Land Speeders with Multi-meltas can do it for a lot cheeper (I’ve always wondered why Chaos never got the Land Speeder. It’s not as if the technology wasn’t around during the Heresy, they had jetbikes, or that Chaos never steals anything).
I can see them as being a distraction. A smaller squad with the Mark of Nurgle and a single special weapon could panic/distract/annoy the enemy whilst your precious Cult Troops advance up the field, but again, still a bit to expensive for my tastes.
This is a bit of an oddball, in that it has Slow and Purposeful, which kinda’ contradicts it place in the Fast Attack section. As a Fast Attack choice he’s not worth the points you’re paying. He’s way overcosted for a slow unit, with a mediocre strength and D6 attacks. It’s just not worth it.
However, you can get them for free (or your opponent has to pay for them, it’s really a matter of opinion) by using the Gift of Chaos power (which will be covered in more detail when we get to Sorcerers). Think of this, every 1/2 times you try, a Spawn pops up in the middle of an unsuspecting Guard squad. He give up gut 40 VP when killed, and can shut down a units shooting for a good while (he is T5 and W3). In that respect, I like the gribbly old beast (and it is a Beast).