Continuing my discussion about blobs in general ‘m going to now turn my attentions to their load outs. So I’ve already claimed I like 40 man blobs in the previous post as the basis numbers wise, mainly due to number of available bodies for soaking wounds, as well as making leadership tests harder to gain for the enemy.
Personally I found it tough to get everything I wanted in the blobs, but then again when has it ever been easy to give an army all you want? So I had to keep upgrades to essentials. The first ones being all Sergeants getting a power weapon, a definite given if you intend to run blobs as I’ve seen a blob run without power weapons get tied up in combat for 3 turns before the rest of the guys army after killing the guards remaining stuff swept back around and into it finishing it off. The blob’s main role of bubble wrapping failed as it was held too long.
Regarding the Sergeants other options I felt plasma pistols were just adding too much to the prices and would make them even more liable to be jaws sniped. Thus I kept them with just the melta bombs and power weapons.
To help in this role and to keep walkers away or to add some anti vehicle power I equipped all my Sergeants with meltabombs. Essential IMO as they add vast amounts more effectiveness for only 5 points a time, this also gives me more coverage around the blobs edges to stop vehicles tank shocking onto my objectives as an auto hit with melta bombs should upset their day, although they are my second line of DOG (Death or glory) picks if I have a choice.
Next up I equipped my squads with Meltaguns, again purely to help in high AV anti tank keep away and also being my first choice in DOG situations. While I’ve seen grenade launchers used as cheaper and better ranged, I felt for the extra 5 points a time it was worth investing in guns which would keep all tanks or opponents out of my face. Or add even more giggles to a squad slogging towards my lines as I blast them with 4 meltaguns, 4 lascannons, and loads of FRFSRF lasguns.
As for flamers I didn’t see the point of even more anti infantry, and plasma guns got too expensive for my tastes with too little a feedback (BS3 shooting, so half chance to hit, sixth chance to wound self, all for a (Assuming 5 point base for guardsman since its 50 for a squad and the Sgt is 5pts meaning 50/10 = 5pts + plasma guns points) 20 point model. Sniper rifles just didn’t seem worth it as it would hinder the blob’s moving even more being a heavy type weapon, thus it came down to meltas or grenade launchers.
To complement the special weapons I took Lascannon teams (Reasons mentioned in a previous post) to help bolster long range firepower while keeping the guns safe. I’m going to test separate heavy weapon squads as my backup and use the blobs as move forward tar pits. But I do feel they can have a place in the infantry squads, especially as it gives your blobs a use if the mission is kill points and you don’t want to close on a Hand to hand army, or to make MSU lists with loads of TL lascannons cry as they prove ineffective on your hordes of men while your own lascannons fire back.
Another essential upgrade is the commissar, a given in blob armies to keep them around and not fleeing the battlefield. They also should always get a power weapon to help with combat, although I have seen some people run their blobs without power weapons and just use the commissar for day care duties of keeping the bob around, and I can see their point of keeping him cheap if his roles purely for a keep unit around shooty blob.
Things like Vox casters, Krak grenades while both looking good; eat points which I couldn’t find, and so were left out of the list. The commissar’s leadership helped enough for tests and the grenades wouldn’t help as much as their points cost compared to other options.
Moving on to the platoon command squads (PCS) I‘ve gone for just 3 meltaguns due to points restrictions, and also to add some more close range anti terminator and tank. Although I was tempted (And even included in early list trials) a Lascannon or even autocannon heavy weapon team, but I found this led to them being focused fired down for quick kill points and to remove a heavy weapon. So now they remain hidden close by for orders and backup fire, and are able to move as required which I found myself reluctant to do with a heavy weapon included which made things tougher in decision making.
Regarding the wargear I didn’t find any of it that appealing for the points. The medipack etc were not essential, the special weapons went the same way in my mind as the infantry squads and what I needed form them, and while plasma guns and a medic would be interesting to run, it would also be focused down as being expensive points wise and a threat by the enemy, or I’d have to hide it and that’s just like the Meltaguns but more expensive.
Regarding PCS commander upgrades, Al’Rahem is a very viable option to make your enemy worry about the arrival o 30+ men on his flank, but commander Chenkov didn’t seem worth the points to me although his stubborn aura did have me considering him for a few minutes about using him as a move forward and support PCS keeping them men around in case the commissars were sniped out.
In closing for this article I’ve found keeping the blobs streamlined is the best way to go, and I’m even considering if the heavy weapons are too much fat on the units. With my list submitted for Arkham I’ll find out one way or another I suppose.