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Author Topic: Adeptus Mechanicus first impressions  (Read 1383 times)

Offline Mabbz

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Adeptus Mechanicus first impressions
« on: September 17, 2015, 10:16:25 PM »
I got a job a few months ago, which mean that I finally have spending money. Combine that with the recent release of two Adeptus Mechanicus Codexi, an army that I've been theming my guard around for ages (because if star trek taught me anything, its that engineers are the most important people to have in the military) and I had no choice. I had to buy them. Of course, I'm not that wealthy, so I've only bought Cult Mechanicus for now. I may buy the other soon, or I may trade my current one for it. Time will tell.


Fluff
So, firstly, fluff. I wouldn't say it adds much that wasn't already known, but it does expand on it quite nicely. One thing I did like is that the Mechanicus seem to actually be doing some fairly proactive things (compared to the rest of the Imperium). For starters, the priesthood of Agripinaa - which supplies Cadia, amongst other places - has actually been sending raiding parties into the Eye of Terror itself to hunt down the Dark Mechanicum. There's also mention of various experiments such as the reality cage, "cagefields of pure law and reason that magnify the material dimension's inherent resistance to the energies of the warp". It's supposed to be the first step to building a Reality Bomb capable of sealing the Eye of Terror for good.

Also, some magi have found ways into the webway, and are trying to find the black library. They haven't found it yet, but remember that bit in the most recent main rulebooks about the failings in the Golden Throne that are beyond the Mechanicum's abilities to repair? Well, as part of a possible solution they led another force into the webway. And "in the grave-cold oubliettes beneath Commorragh, a dark bargain is struck".

As far as unit fluff goes, there's nothing too special. Just some eco-friendly priests who hate wasting energy to the point that they literally drain the bioelectricity out of the unworthy, and their rivals who use electricity for everything, including shooting lightning from their hands. Oh, and giant robots, controlled by computer chips that have to be manually replaced whenever the priests want them to do something different.

Also, their a forge world called Metalica. I don't know if that was already a thing, but I thought I should mention it.

Rules
Games Workshop made me pay £20 for this book, and you know what it gave me? Six new units. That's it. And two of them are similar types of sevitor, while another two are those electropriests I mentioned above. So effectively, four new units. How GW thought people wouldn't complain about having to buy two books instead of one, I will never know. Although, I'm probably going to buy the other one eventually anyway, so I guess they just knew that idiots like me would buy them anyway.

But enough complaints. Here's the rundown:

HQ:
Tech-Priest Dominus
not much to say about him really. He can repair vehicles on a 2+, or he can heal one wound for models in the same codex (including himself) on a 2+. He has a few different weapon choices, but none are particularly special. He's not bad in melee or shooting, but he's nothing to write home about either. He can, however, be hilariouly durable. He has a 2+ armour save and feel no pain as standard, and with various bits of wargear, he can have It Will Not Die (so he can potentially regen 2 wounds per turn), a 2+ invulnerable save when he goes to ground, and the warlord table can give him eternal warrior or let him re-roll those FNP saves.

Honestly though, I'm not that impressed. If it weren't for a few of the formations (see later) and the fact he is needed to make a battleforged detachment, I wouldn't bother with him at all.

Troops:
Kataphron Breachers
Heavy servitors on tracks, the models look great (I bought this codex over the skitarii one for that reason alone). They have either an arc rifle (heavy 2 haywire guns with a 36" range? So much for tanks) or a torsion cannon (1 shot, but hits hard and does d3 wounds for each unsaved wound, so good for hunting MCs). They're also very durable, with two wounds and the same save and more toughness than a marine, and they effectively have relentless.

Despite the firepower, these are technically the melee variants, and they get a choice of CC weapons. They're not very good though; lack of attacks, AP and Ws mean that you're better off shooting. The toughness could make it work, but they're very expensive though, a single unit of three costs more points than a basic guard platoon of 25 men.

Kataphron Destroyers
The shooty variant. They have a worse armour save, and are 5pt/model more expensive, but you know what they give? A heavy 2 plasma cannon, as standard. Bear in mind these are troops choices, so I could take 25 in a 1500pts battleforged list. That's 50 plasma cannon shots per turn. Or you can trade them for free for heavy grav cannons, which are like normal grav cannons, but longer ranged and salvo 4/6. Plus you get a secondary weapon that's either a Phosphor blaster (a heavy bolter with less shots and the ability to reduce cover saves), or a flamer that always hits three times in overwatch. Possibly a little unbalanced.

Elites:
Fulgurite Electro-priests
These are meant to be melee units, who's electroleech staffs can cause instant death on a six to wound. They aren't terrible, and they're fairly cheap (at least compared to the servitors), but they aren't the most durable either; T3, FNP and a 5+ invulnerable save, which goes to 3+ if they wipe out an enemy in close combat. I'm mostly just worried that they'll never get there. I'd say that the instant death attacks make them good for ambushing MCs or lone characters, but the torsion cannons do that better. Still, they're a cool concept.

Corpuscarii Electro-priests
The Fulgurite's Sith counterparts, theses guys are ok against hordes as their lightning weapons can gain two extra attacks if they roll a 6 to hit (melee or ranged). Unforunately, they're also quite fragile, short-ranged, and don't hit very hard. So, they're cool, but not very useful (I think the plasma cannons have anti-horde covered).

Heavy Support:
Kastelan Robot Maniple
Monstrous creatures and their handlers. You can get 2-6 MCs in each squad of these, which is possibly the biggest point sink I've ever seen outside of super-heavies. They come with power fists and a torrent flamer as standard, any of which can be replaced by heavy phosphor blaster (MEQ killing heavy bolters that reduce cover saves). Also, as long as their Cybernetica Datasmiths are alive, they can choose one of three protocols (FNP, double attacks but no shooting,  or double shots but no moving). If they die, the robots are stuck in whatever they last used.

I can see them being a good way to deal with deathstars, as well as being fire magnets, but they're not as tough as you think, and their cost is probably too high to be worth it.

Formations:
This is what they put in instead of more unique units. Honestly, I would have preferred a fast attack choice, but whatever.

Cohort Cybernetica
Combine a Dominus with two Robot squads, and you get to switch between protocols more efficiently and also a split-fire rule equivalent. I suppose if you love your robots you might as well do this, but it is very expensive.

Elimination Maniple
Combine 2-3 Destroyer squads with 1-2 Robot squads, and your destroyers get Ignores Cover and a bonus to their Bs if the robots scored some unsaved wounds with Phosphor weapons. Ignores Cover plasma cannons are alway a good thing, so why not?

Numinous Conclave
Combine 2-3 Fulgurites with 2-3 Corpuscarii (did I mention this codex has a modified FOC, with 4 elite slots but only two Heavy support and 1 HQ?), and you get an extra shot with the Corpuscarii and re-rolls to wound with the Fulgurites if the Corpuscarii shot the enemy first. Makes them a bit more wothwhile, but do you really want to have to take two squads of each? Think of the servitors you could buy!

Holy Requisitioner
Combine a Dominus with 2-3 Breacher squads and you get the deep strike rule, with no scatter if you land near an objective marker, and they always arrive at the same time. Also the Breachers get Counter-Attack and Zealot if they're near an objective, and since you'd be taking a HQ and two troops anyway, why not?

Canticles of the Omnissiah:
These are six army-wide special rules, that you can choose at the start of each of your turns. They can only be used once each (unless you have a battleforged list in which case one can be used twice) and they provide benefits like stealth, +1 strength and such. Also, the power of the effect is based on the number of units from this codex you have on the battlefield. With the Shroudpsalm canticle for example , 1-3 units gives stealth, 4-7 units gives shrouded, and 8+ gives both. Useful, but not usually game-changing.

Conclusions
The models are pretty, I'm desperately in love with the sevitors, and I haven't found any particularly stupid fluff. But I really wish there had been more variety, or that they had simply merged it with the Skitarii. I don't think I'll make a full army of them, but they will make fun allies for my Guard. All in all, not brilliant, but pretty good.

Thoughts?

Offline Waaaghpower

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Re: Adeptus Mechanicus first impressions
« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2015, 11:14:30 PM »
I think this is a part of Games Workshop's recent shift towards the 'Play with whatever you want,' attitude. As seen with the Inquisition supplement and then Imperial Knights, (both of whom can technically be their own armies but kinda suck at it,) and the 'Make EVERYONE Battle Brothers' philosophy, Assassins, etc, there's clearly a shift towards a single codex no longer being the norm. That's what it looks like is going on here: A half-Codex that's meant to serve alongside your other armies, rather than as a standalone army.
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Offline BigToof

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Re: Adeptus Mechanicus first impressions
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2015, 09:55:24 PM »
Gameplay wise AM suffers from mobility, but have guns that can do serious damage (plasma and haywire).

If you actually combine them with drop pods they can get really scary.

Glad to hear that you're still up and playing!

Best,
-BT
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Offline Mabbz

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Re: Adeptus Mechanicus first impressions
« Reply #3 on: October 18, 2015, 07:24:14 PM »
I recently bought a box of three Kataphrons and allied them with some marines I had lying around, for a campaign game my GW is running. The rules were 450pts, and it must be a new army (i.e. you actually have to buy new models, not just use an army you've had for years. At times like this, I really hate Games Workshop). The marines had never been used before, so I got away with using the following:

1 Techmarine
5 Scouts
5 Tactical marines
3 Destroyers with two Plasma Cannons and one Heavy Grav Cannon
Aegis Defence line with Quad Cannon

My opponent meanwhile had Harlequins. I'm not well versed on their models, but I believe there was:
1 Shadow seer
1 Solitaire
5 basic Harlequins, one of which had been upgraded to Troupe master (and Warlord, for some reason)
5 more Harlequins, I assume.

The battle had four objectives, one in each quarter of the board. You scorder 3 points for every game turn you held one, but you could only hold the ones on your opponents side of the field. Also, kill points were in effect too.

I infiltrated the scouts hoping to slow the enemy down and/or nab an objective early on, but succeded only in having them slaughtered turn by the second harlequin team. The rest of the enemy charged straight towards my gunline. The Techmarine died to the shadowseer's Mind Maze, and the tactical marines didn't do much. Also I discovered that interceptor no longer lets skyfire weapons target units on the ground. So it all came down to the new kataphrons. So here's a quick rundown:

Turn 1: Dead Solitaire
Turn 2: Psychic shenanigans stopped them shooting
Turn 3: Dead Shadowseer and four dead Harlequins (the tacs killed the troupe master)
Turn 4: 4 more dead Harlequin
Turn 5: One last dead Harlequin

Conclusion: They killed all but one enemy model. Granted, they were fighting a small number of squishy eldar, but they still basically won me the game. Oh, and I forgot that they had Phosphor blasters all game, so this was just using their main weapons. I look forward to using them more often (hopefully one I have enough to make a full Mechanicus army)