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Blood Vow

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Saturday, January 14, 2012

Tyranid Reserve List Advice from hyv3mynd

I have been in contact with Aaron from over on the Hyv3mynd Tyranid blog seeking his advice how to better tweak my current army list. Aaron and his wife just had their first child yesterday so a big congratulations to them on the new family member. Aaron was gracious enough to take the time to look at my army and has provided some very thoughtful and much appreciated feedback which I share below. I have been following Aaron's blog since its creation last year - its a great source of knowledge, tactics, batreps and analysis for anyone that plays Tyranids. You can find a link to Aaron's blog over to the left here in my blog roll. Aaron is another serious Tyranid player who thinks the race is competitive and also has lots of tournament experience with his beautiful bugs including participation in last year's American Team Championship (ATC) event.

My Current 2000 point Army List

Hive Tyrant - wings, twin linked devourers w. brainleech ammo, bone sword & lash whip; Hive Commander; Paroxsym & Life Leech
Tyranid Prime - bone sword & lash whip, scything talons, adrenal glands

Doom of Malan'tai - mycetic spore
2x Zoanthrope - mycetic spore
10x Yrmgal genestealer

15x termagant - devourers - mycetic spore
10x Hormagaunt - adrenal glands & toxin sacs
3x Warrior - bone swords & lash whip, 2x deathspitter & barbed strangler, toxin sacs - mycetic spore
15x genestealer incl. Broodlord - scything talons & toxin sacs

Heavy Support
Trygon Prime - adrenal glands

As you'll see below I was very happy that rather than attempt to completely overhaul my list Aaron provided useful suggestions how to tweak what I've got to make it more competitive.

Aaron's Feedback
Here is what the Hyv3mynd had to say. Note that Aaron is aware I intend to take my army to some major national events.

On the Concept of a Fully Reserved Army
I'm liking reserve armies more and more these days. My Dark Eldar army is being built as a reserve/WWP army. My biggest loss at our local GT was against Jon Willingham when he took me by surprise by reserving his whole army. It can be the ultimate tool in controlling the flow and pace of battle. It can also be the most difficult list style to master as smart opponents will be able to dodge most of your tricks. Sacrificing 1-2 turns of shooting and assault can also put you in a tough position to cause enough damage to win a mission. These types of lists can be the most fun to play because every game will be unique depending on which reserves arrive and when. They can also be the most frustrating because there will be times when the dice totally screw you.

That being said, a list like this really needs to be tuned to inflict maximum damage in the reduced turns it will see and complete the mission objectives. There's a few things I would change in the list.  Keep in mind these opinions are based on my personal experience and local meta and they may or may not help in your area or the tournaments you'll be at.

Suggestions for my Current Army
Most of my suggestions are based on increasing damage output and reducing easy KP's, assuming objectives and KP's will be your primary objectives. Here's my version:

- HQ -
Hive Tyrant - wings, devourers, whip+sword; Hive Commander; paroxysm & leech essence (270)

-Elites -
Hive Guard x3  (150)
Zoanthropes x3 - mycetic spore  (220)
Ymgarl Genestealers x7  (161)

- Troops -
Devilgaunts x15 - mycetic spore (190)
Warriors x4 + whip/swords (180)
Genestealers x14 + broodlord/scytals, toxin sacs (286)
Genestealers x14 + broodlord/scytals, toxin sacs (286)

- Heavy Support -
Trygon Prime + adrenal glands  (250)

So I added some redundancy which is important in reserve lists. If genestealers are filling a specific role, two units will give you a better chance to have them when and where you need them.

Your foundation is strong against infantry and weak against MSU mech, so I added a zoan and 3 Hive Guard who will walk on. Janthkin uses hive guard like this in his reserve list and makes them work. Bring them on where they can reach a target or behind BLoS terrain.

I got rid of the DoM because he's too situational and unreliable IMO. If you're up against mech spam, he's useless. If he scatters too far, he's useless.

I also dropped some spores as they... give up easy KP's. The Warriors are on foot now, but you can outflank them with Hive Commander or walk them on the long edge for Capture & Control.

This list also has more scoring bodies, more anti-tank, and harder hitting units IMO.

2-3 hard hitting outflanking units will make your opponent choose between a central deployment or risk getting hit from the side. Use that choice wisely when choosing a place to hide the Ymgarls. They are your best disruption unit as they're the only ones guaranteed an assault the turn they arrive if your opponent avoids the edges.

On Tactics and Strategy
Place objectives as close to the edges as possible so the outflankers will count. Zoans never need cover so you can drop their spore in their wings and use them to provide cover to arriving genestealers or Warriors.

Don't be afraid to deploy the Tyrant, Hive Guard, Trygon, Warriors, and infiltrate the genestealers if you're going first against certain lists. The key to lists like these is to not get trapped in the same mindset going into each game.

So there you have it. I will be testing this list soon and should have some new batreps to share here.

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