Saturday, July 2, 2011

Assault Kommando Tactics

Wondering how to use Assault Kommandos and the tactics involved?  Me too! 

I've been running them in my lists of late having played them a couple of times and although they are very hard to use and hard to keep alive, I enjoy having them.  Here are the things I'm learning with them.

They Cannot Aim

With base stats of MAT 6/RAT 5, they will have a hard time hitting the targets they need to, like light infantry.  Not terribly bad but it will be difficult.  So they have a few things to help them. 

One is their gas grenade.  IF you manage to hit your target with them, the target's DEF will be -2.  That will essentially bring the AKs RAT up to 8 which is pretty awesome.  So get some gas grenades on your target and they are good to go. 

One thing that I've been doing is bringing Gorman with them to be their unofficial UA.  He has protection from gas attacks like them and he can debuff like they do only crazier with Black Oil-- -4 MAT/RAT on the target among other nasty side effects.  So have Gorman throw a Black Oil, then hit with some gas grenades.  And a few of your targets will be down to -6 DEF. 

The AKs next weakness, and they have a few glaring ones so I list them first, is:

They Hit Soft

So if you should manage to hit with them, their gun is only POW 10, and their melee weapons are POW 8 and 9.  So yes, they are good for hitting low ARM infantry, things like shooty units or solos.  Because they hit so soft you want to be able to boost their damage.  They get another die on the charge but with a caster like pIrusk, they can get another one with Battle Lust.  It's like Butcher's Feat put on a unit ever turn!  Great for weapon masters to hit even HARDER or for guys like AKs to just be able to hit hard.  But they have some strengths and the first major one is this:

They Have A Lot of Attacks

I'm not sure if a unit in the game has as many attacks as the AKs.  With their Assault and Battery order they can shoot once with a ranged weapon and then charge in and do 2 attacks with their melee weapons.  That's three attacks each.  I've been using pIrusk and his feat gives them +2 MAT/RAT, both are stat buffs that the AKs use for Assault and Battery.  They essentially become MAT 8/ RAT 7 which is pretty awesome, not to mention if you put Battle Lust on them they'll have 4D6 dmg on the charge.  These buffs are compounded over 3 attacks each! 

I have yet to do this attack but one day I will :D  Besides the sheer amount of attacks they have a weapon attachments:

They Have Flame Throwers

The flamethrowers still have poor RAT like a Kommando but the POW on it is 12, much better than their standard gun.  It also covers 8".  I've been keeping the flame throwers behnd a front line of AKs and then using the backs of Kommandos to aim.  I don't know why I do this.  The sprays can ignore stealth so all you gotta do is walk up to a group and fire away! 

I've also used a Kodiak to throw a flamethrower to take out some Stormblades and that works really well because of the AOE 5.  But use as a last resort.  I'd rather keep the flamethrower operational.   Another strength they have:

They Are Fast (well by Khadoran standards)

SPD 6 is great and allows them to cover long distances if they need to to reposition and it gives them a 9.5" threat range on the charge just like Assassins.  But most of the time you won't be running them because you will use their next tactic.

They Have Shield Wall

What this means is when they are base to base after activating, their armor goes up to ARM 18.  Against low POW attacks they can survive a lot.  In my last game against Legion, the AKs were holding a flank opposed by some striders and Deathstalkers.  The AKs got hit but were very tough to damage. 

The Tactics I use

Again, I've only played them a few times but I try to match them against light infantry, preferebly ones with Pow 10 attacks.  That would give the enemy -8 to hit, pretty good.  They are opposite of Assassins who have high DEF and low ARM.  For Assassins, you want them against well.... anyone because they are hard to hit.  AKs weakness is that they can be hit AND take damage to high POW weapons so keep them engaged with the low POW ones and you should be ok.  They also don't fear corrosion from Cryx or Fire from Menoth :)

Running with them has proved dicey as they would get shot up with ARM 14.  It may hurt to walk but you want to have that ARM 19 in Shield Wall. 

On contact with the enemy, try to debuff their targets first either with Gorman or with your own gas grenades.  Then the rest can shoot with better odds.  For maximum effect, use Assault and Battery to shoot and charge with 30 attacks for the full unit. 

Defensively I've shot my own AKs with gas grenades to put them in the cloud that gives -2 to attack rolls if you are in it.  That will help them to deflect more hits.

You can also do hit and run (sort of) by using Assault and Battery, shooting, and then running away.  The order says that after you shoot you have to charge OR run, and it doesn't have to be at the targets you shot.

In situations where you are facing a lot of armor and there aren't infantry for the AKs, I would let them tarpit and be a front shield for your heavy hitters.  In the front they can also use their gas to debuff the enemy (for an attack) but you don't want your guys in it or they will suffer penalty.  So make sure you attack with guys that have reach.

Also, paired with pIrusk the AKs have survivability with the super tough on Feat, helps to keep them alive.

Still learning them but they have a lot of things that they can do on the battlefield so they are never boring.  Now to get them painted!       

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