Sunday, December 11, 2011

How to Kill It: CSM vs Spyders

Insulting Description/Nickname:

I got nothing. But imagining them in a diaper ala ATF sure sasses the hell out of them, no?

Threat To:

On their own, Spyders are pretty meh for an MC, but their real threat lies in their ability to spawn buttloads of scarabs. These in turn threaten massed vehicles, as they can spread out to kill them by multi-assaulting and their entropic strike rule. If left to their own devices, 9 spyders can produce up to 27 scarab swarms in three turns. Or, put differently, they can generate a maximum of 405 points of extra units in three turns - significant if you only have 1850-2000 on the board.

Shooting It:

For most 5th ed armies, shooting down a T6, W3, 3+ MC is not a big deal, as most armies have a bevy of krak missiles, autocannons, lances, etc. which can make short work of a spyder. Chaos not so much. If your opponent decides to camp in cover and further the effectiveness of your shooting, you could very really be facing a insurmountable task. Adding to this, most spyder armies will be rolling with Imotekh or a couple of solar pulsing crypteks, meaning sitting backfield and shooting with preds or oblits won't work.

How do we face these then? Answer:

Plasma guns we have, and we have them in numbers. Whether its Oblits, Chosen running 4-5x, Plague Marines or Raptors, CSM have plasma in abundance, and these guts can cut down spyders in a hurry. As an added bonus, once you're out of spyders to kill, the plasma guns can make quick work (insta-kill) of the remaining scarab bases. Sure, you may lose an occasional guy to his own plasma gun, but hey: It is Chaos after all.

As an added bonus, the 12" optimum range for a double-tap plasma will be well within most night fighting spot rolls.

Assaulting It:

Here there are some options. A Warptimed Prince (or two) can likely deal with these as long as you support them by assaulting/shooting the nearby scarabs to prevent them from torrenting your princes to death.

Zerks or Plague Marines with a p-fist champ could also work, but keep in min the spyders will still be pulling down a couple guys every turn.

Likewise, if you're one of the holdouts still running dreds, you may be able to team up and get through the spyders before they get through you. Just bear in mind that you'll need to move something in the way of the scarabs who will otherwise make short work of the dreds. And that gauss fire will stop you midfield if you're out in the open.

Tips and Tricks:

- First and foremost, I would suggest using Lash of Submission to pull these bastards over of cover and towards your plasma guns. Lash can also help bring the spyders into spotting range of your other guns, allowing them to finish off weakened units. Remember, unless they're dead, they can still spawn swarms. Conversely, if your opponent is running Gloom Prisms you could use lash to push back incoming scarab units back towards your opponents deployment zone. While the prism can still cover scarabs within 3" of the spyder, my guess a lot of people will prefer to kep the spyders back and hunkered down in cover.

- Next thing to consider would be using empty rhinos to tank shock scarabs away from their parent spyders. This may buy more time to plasma down the spyders, or to allow your assaulters to finish them.

- I think the best overall strategy against Spyders is to get aggressive and do so in a hurry. If they are running lots of spyders, that means they don't have annihilation barges or other Heavy Support options to help blast away your vehicles. If you have 1st turn (and your opponent doesn't have Imotekh), considering putting everything on the line and going full tilt at them. Even if they do stun some of your vehicles midfield, they won't be able to handle a massed assault from cult troops, DPs and even p-fist swinging oblits.

- Imotekh's ability to steal initiative fairly reliably makes putting everything on the line in the open far more dangerous. If you are running Chosen and Oblits, you may want to consider outflanking/deep striking in. This can be tricking though, as you need to be hitting these with several units at once, and bad reserve/scatter rolls can really put a damper on things.

That's the best I can come up with. Ideal? No. But then again, neither are CSM right now.

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