Sunday, 12 February 2017

40k analysis: Scarab Occult

The top warriors of the Thousand Sons, the Scarab occult are the elite terminator guard of Magnus the red. But how do they stack up in the tabletop?

Let's start by comparing them to vanilla Chaos terminators. Starting at a hefty 250 points for 5, they are 100 points more expensive (compared to a squad of 5 vanillas) and because they have a minimum unit size of 5, they are a bit less flexible, so tactics such as termicide are less viable.

For your extra 100 points, you get an improved invulnerable save, fearless and ap3 bolters as standard, and and a mastery 2 psyker as a unit champion. When you factor that in, it starts to sound like good value. Let's look at it this way instead:

  • 4 plain terminators will cost 120 points
  • A sorcerer in terminator armour,  with an appropriate mark, and mastery 2, is 125 points

So that's 245 points already, factor in the mark of tzeentch for the other 4 guys, ap3 bolters, fearless and free votlw, you're looking at a hidden bargain. It also saves you a hq slot, meaning you can enjoy another option, such as Ahriman or an exhalted sorcerer.

If you take a thousand sons detachment, you get the added blessing bonuses, making this unit as durable, if not more so, than thunder hammer/storm shield terminators , with the added bonus of a round of shooting.

The options are far more limited, with no access to the combi weapons and other combat options (barring an extra sword for the sorcerer). You do get access to some very powerful special weapons instead:
  • Hellfyre rockets, a two shot krak missile launcher
  • Heavy warpflamers, ap3 heavy flamers with warpflame
  • Soulreaper cannons, an ap3 assault cannon with 1 less strength

The few options you get can greatly improve the units offensive abilities, the flamer and cannon can mince infantry up to and including space marines, whilst the hellfyre rockets give you a solid anti tank/monster option. As well as this, the sorcerer can choose from a wide range of disciplines,  giving you tscticwl flexability (heretech is ideal for an anti tank unit, and pyromancy for hordes, whilst divination could make the unit very deadly assassins that'll rarely miss their mark).

These guys made for a great bodyguard for your chaotic lord. With good saves and ap3 weapons, units will have a touch them getting close. Whilst expensive, if you have the points they are are good alternative to plain-Janew terminators.

The other option is to run are Sekhmet Conclave. Units that are within 6" of two units units benefit from +1 toughness,  making them much more durable. Combined with other abilities and powers, such as flesh metal hide,  can make them incredibly durable, ideal for holing objectives and tanking shot after shot. 

  For a thousand sons player they are a great addition to the army, but can quickly eat into your army'so available points. One unit can greatly add and support your force, whereas a Sekhmet Conclave is a force to be reckoned with. 

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