Bob here with a brief discussion of my first game using the new Dark Angels Codex in battle a few weeks ago. We had an odd number of players in the shop so I ended up fielding 3000 points of Dark Angels versus two 1500 point Tyranid players. I was not expecting to have to play at this point level (but god knows I have the models to field 3k or even higher) so I did not have a list read. Here is what I ended up throwing together: Also I can't remember if this is all of it.
Belial with a Deathwing Command Squad with a company banner, champion, apothecary, and an assault cannon (320) mounted in a Land Raider Crusader with a multimelta and Deathwing upgrade (290).
Tactical Squad 1: plasma cannon, plasma gun, veteran sargent with a plasma pistol (195)
Tactical Squad 2: plasma cannon, plasma gun, veteran sargent with a plasma pistol (195)
Tactical Squad 3: plasma cannon, veteran sargent. (165)
Deathwing 1: 2 lightning claws, assault cannon, chain fist (250)
Deathwing 2: plasma cannon, chain fist (250)
Deathwing 3: chain fist, cyclone missile launcher (255)
Deathwing Knights: (235)
Dark Talon: (160)
Ravenwing Black Knights: grenade launcher (126)
Ravenwing Attack Squadron: 6 bikes, plasma gun, veteran sargent with a power sword and melta bombs (206)
Landspeeder Vengeance: assault cannon (160)
And arrayed against me were two "Nidzilla" lists. I have never fought Tyranids before but I know the basic tactics to use against them (i.e kill the big ones and the little ones). I don't remember my opponents exact lists but they had at least one Trygon, one Mawloc, a Tervigon, Tyrants and Hive Guard and Tyrant Guard, Gaunts, a Carnifex or two, some Zoanthropes, and lastly a Doom of Malan'tai (more on this abomination later).
The game type we rolled for was relic. It was placed in the center of the board in a narrow piece of terrain.I won the battle in the end thanks to secondary objectives and Belial's The Hunt Warlord trait (his command squad killed one of the Hive Tyrant warlords). The game ended at the end of turn 5 and I had somehow managed to deny my opponents the relic. To put this in proper perspective I had only one model left on the board at the end of the game but a brave plasma cannon Tactical Marine had lived long enough so that when the game ended he had just died and the Tyranids did not get to pick up the relic. Check out a few (bad quality) photos of the battle.
So what do I think of the new army? In short I love it. The Deathwing Knights performed as they should have, i.e. they were tough as nails and killed anything they fought, but they just don't work against large numbers. Use them to kill monsters/vehicles/characters etc. The Land Speeder Vengeance is pretty awesome. If you can keep it alive it can dish out a lot of plasma template death. I never used the large blast as the multiple smaller templates worked better against the Nids. The Dark Talon wasn't all that impressive but I don't think I know how to use it to its full potential yet. Unfortunately the Black Knights didn't live long enough to do anything as they ate death from the Doom very early in the game. And speaking of the Doom of Malan'tai, if you see this thing kill it quickly. The amount of death this thing can deal is stupid. It basically accounted for my middle section of units before I could kill the damn thing.
Thanks for reading folks and as always I welcome your thoughts and comments. My next battle themed article will be Dark Angels v.s. Orks. Cheers and happy gaming everyone!