Thursday, 12 January 2012

Badab War: A look at Lord Asterion Moloc

Fellow enthusiast and leader of the Badab Veterans; Silar has recently completed his Huron and in his celebratory post asked what unit would best suit his character (to which I made a contribution post), read it HERE. Inspired I decided to look at my own chapter master Asterion Moloc and see how I would field him and how I would use him in my games.

Like his Astral Claws adversary, Asterion comes with Terminator armour, a near identical stat line and even the same points cost. However he does come with an additional wound and the addition of a storm shield, both these elements should already make it obvious what the intention of Moloc is: pure 'beat stick'. Eternal Warrior and Dark Fury, also mean he is not going anywhere once he get's stuck in, what is even better is that Moloc carries the Black Spear which is a relic blade (nice) with a one shot strength 8 assault weapon (even more nice!) and while it is not going to take out heavy armour, it presents a range anti AV shot for a unit such as Thunder shields, or as another consideration is that it could be used as a potential character snipe too... 

Unlike Huron though, Moloc is a lot more selfish in his abilities. While he does have orbital bombardment, it is only the one and he does grant the preferred enemy trait to his army. Outside of that don't expect any other buffs such as sharing leadership or any other support abilities. One consideration is, if initial 6th Ed reports are true and preferred enemy becomes applicable to shooting, this will make for a huge damage potential increase (in my opinion) of a Minotaur's army led by Moloc.

For me, Moloc will work in the same vein as Lysander, but without the worry of having to stick him with a bolter unit for risk of losing out on an ability. Moloc is as pure a melee monster as you can get, who has a chance of armour popping (Black Spear)  for units such as Thunder shields, the addition of assault grenades benefits for a squad he joins, further reinforce the fluff background of working extensively with Terminator units (might work quite well with tactical Terminators too hmm...). However the single minded nature of Moloc makes him extremely predictable and a canny opponent will throw sacrificial units at you to either mob you; in which case Fearless may start to work against you; or set it up for a huge amount of torrent fire. Further more the need to commit to get into combat means a transport which will seriously add to the points cost of this death star...

Moloc + Thunder shields + Land Radier = ouch : / 

To quote Rick Priestly, "Combat is dangerous"and the current game environment of pure mech means you are committing around 900pts to a situation that may not present itself as in this edition, especially if your army does not have the means to get to the soft, tangy centre. A solution might be to take Tactical terminators with a Cyclone missile launcher to compliment the Black Spear - giving 3 Str 8 shots on a Deep Strike turn. You could also add a Librarian to the unit with Gate of Infinity and use Moloc as a response unit to squads engaged in combat i.e. use a Tactical Squad to bait or engage a unit, gate to position for a Moloc charge in subsequent turn. 

Moloc is a truly powerful combat monster who has the means to put the hurt on almost any unit and has the survivability to take shots back. He will be leading the charge and dishing out the pain, whilst helping your army dish out even more pain without regard to anything else, and yet the points cost and the fact that he is a Forgeworld figure means you open up to far bigger Forgeworld threats, mobility is an issue like with all melee but there are options available for that situation. All we need really need now is a decent miniature sculpt!

Thanks for reading,

The 14th Legion

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