Friday, June 14, 2019

On the Workbench [June] - Heresy Era Dark Angels Veteran Squad, Cataphractii Praetor and Command Squad

Inspired by my recent Horus Heresy game and looking ahead to the next, I put together a few more Heresy-era Dark Angels this month.  My next campaign game looks to be a 1K Zone Mortalis game and so I'm looking at new models to add to my original 1K force.  Zone Mortalis will be brutal close quarters fighting and calls for some new units.  Missile Launchers, for example, won't be of much use in the close confines, nor will the Deredeo do as well.

While I recently added a Praetor and Command Squad in power armor to my available units, I thought this was an excellent opportunity to add Cataphractii elements as a foreshadowing to the Deathwing. So a new Praetor in Cataphractii armor would be needed. I decided to take advantage of the model I already have from the Betrayal at Calth box set. At some point I'll do something more interesting but for now this gets me going with a perfectly serviceable Praetor.

While I was at it, I assembled and based the Chaplain as well.  He won't fit in my Zone Mortalis list, but he needed to get built at some point.  I really like the look of this model! I kept him stock.  Both the Praetor and the Chaplain are "bonus" models here.  I don't need to put a lot of hobby time into them.  I want to save that time for more interesting projects.  It's good too seek a balance with limited hobby time.  Not every model can be a heavily converted masterpiece!

OK, back to the Cataphractii Praetor.  A command squad is a great way to fit in some terminators without tying up one of the two available elite slots for a Zone Mortalis list. I have some Tartaros terminators built, but for the command squad, I decided to stick with Cataphractii armor.  These guys are going to be doing some tough ship-to-ship fighting in the void which suits Cataphractii armor.

A plasma blaster is flavorful for the Dark Angels and it's limited range shouldn't be much of an issue in the close confines of a Zone Mortalis.  A combi-plasma adds additional AP2 firepower which should help thin out opposing heavily armored marines. A mix of close combat weapons should give the squad flexibility as they batter there way through the opposition.  I REALLY wanted to paint a couple lightning claw terminators.  I really enjoy the poses and the more realistic, slender claws. I chose to go with a back banner for the standard bearer.  Hard to fight effectively with your hands full of banner.

The usual base cover was added using good quality wood glue (a more durable and tackier form of white glue). Now they are ready for primer.  Last up is a 5 man squad of Veterans.  The Veterans will eventually get bulked out to a full squad of 10, but for the 1K Zone Mortalis game, I can only fit in the minimum squad size.  These guys will join a Contemptor in the elite slots and will likely hold objectives and serve an assault role where necessary.  With two attacks base and two close combat weapons, they will role many assault dice, despite their small size.  Paired with the Dark Angels Mastery of the Blade legion rule, they should do well on the charge against other marines, if they survive over watch. :)

Veterans can get a Heavy Bolter with a suspensor, allowing them to move and fire at half range (18") without having to take snap shots.  Very useful in a Zone Mortalis, where range is limited anyway, and a perfect excuse to hose the enemy down with Molecular Acid Shells ( Heavy 3 poison(2)), a special item of Dark Angels war gear.  The Sergeant holds a combi-melta for close in smack-down where necessary. And everyone carries bolt pistols and chainswords for close in work, except the sergeant who will use bolt pistol and Calibanite War Blade.

A feisty small squad who will try not to get eliminated in a single volley of fire.  I have not played Zone Mortalis before, but I expect with good play and smart movement I should be able to keep these guys alive until they need to go to work.  Next up will be a Breacher Squad (10 marines with breacher shields and a couple meltaguns) and a contemptor with dual twin-linked heavy bolters all on order currently from Forge World.  The breachers will soak up fire as the force advances into the Zone Mortalis while the contemptor provides fire support with 6 twin-linked, d6 AP, poison(2) shots. That's re-rolling to hit, random AP (would love to see some 1s and 2s!!), and wounding on 2s with more Molecular Acid Shells.  Should be tough against infantry and I'm not expecting much vehicle trouble in a Zone Mortalis (dreads only, really).  I'm relying on melta fire across the squads, and the terminators to eliminate those hard targets.

So that's what I have on the work bench this month.  I really will get back to the four AT Warhounds next...I promise! :)

Cheers and Happy Gaming!

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