Firstly the Manticore which brings some serious S10 anti tank fire power as well as possibly anti horde through 1-3 large blasts. The ap4 lets it down slightly, but this is more than likely to compensate the 3 large blasts and S10 for only 160 points.
|Not my manticore, its a googled pic, no challenge to the owner is intended|
Still, it can thin down non marine armies quickly if they get caught clumped up out of cover, and even in cover without stealth they are still 50% likely to die.
The dual ability of this unit to either fire directly or indirect means it could have a place in a Blob army which specialised its platoons for moving forward to keep enemy units away from the Manticores, or simply give the platoon some heavy weapons and surround the tank keeping it safe from out flankers and deep strikers.
The Deathstrike on the other hand only brings a single random sized blast for the same price, but the shot fired has no centre meaning everything hit under the range suffers a full Str hit, and with the blast being D3+3 radius, you will be landing blasts 8-12 inches in size. That’s nothing to sneeze at even if it is only a single shot.
|Not my Deathstrike, its a googled pic, no challenge to the owner is intended|
The problem is though it IS only a single shot, meaning you really need it to do something amazing or you spent 160 points on a unit which can't do much more. Add this to the random launch from turn 2 onwards and you can't plan for the shot to land... this is a big kick in the crotch if you need the shot and its suffered a few weapon destroyed results meaning you still need high to get the shot off... and let’s not forget its only AV12 like the Manticore, meaning both are unlikely to survive many shots if targeted.
This is especially true in a Blob army where you're hoping to make the enemies anti tank guns useless. Thus meaning you have to hide them properly on the table to keep both pieces safe until they get a good shot off (Or in the cast of the Deathstrike the only shot off!).
It’s these negative factors which make me sit on the fence about bringing these in my forces. The potential damage is huge, but can they be kept alive being only Av12/10/10 and being the only vehicles in the list?
I suppose it depend on the terrain setup and who you're fighting, but it would be a real downer to have wolf scouts come on turn 2 and blow them up before getting a chance to fire. Thus it may mean you have to keep a blob back to keep them wrapped safe from melta or assaults... and if you're doing that then you're not moving forward to take objectives which could lead to movement problems later on in the game as you have to remove quicker enemies from nesting on objs.
For both variants I've always preferred a heavy flamer to add to my anti horde in mech lists, but in the Blob I'm almost thinking they need the heavy bolters to give them some long range fire power to help against light vehicles if their main weapons are destroyed or already shot since I know the blobs will be between them and the enemy.
Overall I think they could both earn a place in lob lists, either 3 Manticore, 3 Deathstrike or 2 Manticore and a single Deathstrike.
3 Manticore allows for a lot of blasts possibly dropping each turn assuming you get an even spread of 3, 2 and 1 blast rolls. Consider anything more to be gravy and consider rolling 3 on the D3 three times to be a gift from the higher powers to cause some damage.
2 Manticore and a Deathstrike allows for good blasts per turn ( I like to assume 3 total and anything more a bonus) while keeping a possible heavy punch in the army, especially if you again roll well on its D3 and make a 12 inch zone of pain... even more so if its on a parking lot army.
Finally three Deathstrike will prove to be more unstable an army but the potential punches means you could wreck the enemy if you get the blasts early enough in the game allowing you to finally relax.
Personally I don't like the idea of a single Manticore and two Deathstrike as it means less blast per turn and reliance on 2 big hitters. I feel if you want to go down this route you should just go all three Deathstrike and hide them out of sight.