Underplayed & Overlooked: Codex Blood Angels
Welcome back to Underplayed & Overlooked. Today we look at the thirstiest of all the Emperor's Chosen in Codex: Blood Angels. Lets begin. Astorath the Grim
- Cost: 3
- Offense: 3
- Defense: 3
- Support: 4
Starting with his Cost I see him as balanced against the comparison cost of a base Reclusiarch. While he doesn't bring much in the way of increased stats to the table his Support abilities and enhanced Defense make the extra 90 points worth it in my opinion but he is not a bargain.
Offensively he misplaced his Boltgun somewhere and only has a Bolt Pistol. So while he cant take a Boltgun like a Reclusiarch at least his single 12" Range S4 AP5 shot does hit on 2+ it can be expected to do what a Bolt Pistol might do in a game. For Close Combat he has WS 6, Initiative 5, and 3 Attacks base with a Strength 6 power weapon. In addition successful Invulnerable Saves must be rerolled against it which is a nice plus. But overall compared to some of the powerhouses in the Codex he actually shakes out to being just average.
Defensively he has a slightly better 2+ Armor Save compared to a Reclusiarch as well as a 4+ Invulnerable Save. He maintains 3 Wounds but lacks Eternal Warrior or a higher Toughness than 4 so he is still just as susceptible to S8 weapons as his counterpart. Essentially just average given his cost.
For Support he bring a lot to the table. He makes any squad he joins Fearless and like all Chaplins he allows himself and his squad to re-roll To Hit rolls. However if he is joined in a squad of Death Company they also re-roll To Wound which makes a strong unit even stronger. Lastly he makes the Red Thirst happen on a 3+ instead of just a 1 which means at least a few units should be quite thirsty. Unfortunately this works for other Blood Angels opponents as well but it is still worth it and a net positive overall.
- Cost: 2
- Offense: 3
- Defense: 3
- Support: 3
Starting with his Cost it is tough to see him as much of a bargain. Costing a bit more than two base Sanguinary Priests means he should really shine especially in Support abilities. Like with all Sanguinary Priests he longs to be moving between squads to optimize Feel No Pain distribution and trying to avoid getting sacked by a rogue power weapon attack but sadly while he brings a little extra in the right places I just cant quite justify his cost.
Offensively he has the same mighty Bolt Pistol that all Sanguinary Priests carry. Beware the fury of his single 12" Range S4 AP5 shot that hits on a mighty 2+. Ranged aside he does bring a bit more to the table in Close Combat. He has WS 5, Initiative 5, and 3 Base Attacks. Not bad especially given that they are Strength 5 with Rending. Definitely a welcome boost but for a guy you don't necessarily want in combat in the first place especially given his Defense.
Defensively he has 2 Wounds which is one more than a regular Sanguinary Priest as well as Feel No Pain that works on a 2+ but only for himself. This does increase his survivability but he only has a regular 3+ Armor Save. This means much of the things that would threaten a regular Sanguinary Priest still threaten him just fine, great Feel No Pain or not. Is he a bit more survivable? Yes. Is he more survivable than two separate Sanguinary Priests? I don't quite think so.
From a Support perspective he brings the usual 6" bubble of Feel No Pain but adds Furious Charge to the mix. This is welcome for shoring up any Marines who weren't quite thirsty enough to suit your needs. Also once per game you can reroll any single roll which is also quite nice but it is lost if he is killed before you use it. Those abilities do help elevate him but it is not quite enough in my opinion to call him a bargain.
- Cost: 3
- Offense: 4
- Defense: 4
- Support: 4
Starting with his Cost one could easily see this score being low. After all he is 25 points more than the mighty Mephiston and he lacks the Toughness 6 and 5 Wounds that come with that profile. But I think he brings a lot to the table and he is actually fairly costed for what you get in both melee offense and support hence the average score.
Offensively he stands out even compared to his very powerful compatriots. Though he lacks a Ranged Attack his melee is quite impressive. He has two base stats higher that any of the other Unique characters which are WS 8 which isn't likely to mean much most of the time and 5 Attacks. He is also Initiative 6 which is same as Dante and only bested by Mephiston. His base Strength of 5 is the second highest and on the charge he moves up to Mephiston levels becoming Strength 6 and Initiative 7. Not bad at all.
His weapon is a two handed weapon but at least it is Master Crafted which helps a bit in the reliability department. Also with his Avenging Angel ability you can choose an enemy HQ unit when he lands and for the rest of the game he re-rolls all To Hit and To Wound rolls against that target. That is avery nice ability especially against Monstrous Creature HQ units which usually have a high Toughness value.
Defensively he is very good. While Mephiston has a 2+ Armor Save, T6, and 5 Wounds the Sanguinor wins out in my opinion with having 3 Wounds, Toughness 4, a 2+ Armor Save and a 3+ Invulnerable Save all with Eternal Warrior. You are easier to Wound and you only have 3 of them but you are much more likely to shrug off potential attacks thanks to the superior Saves. I think he is very survivable. Also it is always worth mentioning the ease in which Feel No Pain is made available to Blood Angel units which if you can get it, is a big improvement.
For Support he offers a lot. Aura of Fervor is the big one giving all friendly units within 6" +1 Attack. This is exactly the type of thing Blood Angels players really want and it insures that at least his squad will be punching extremely hard. Also he can bless a Sergeant model in your army with +1 WS, Wound, Initiative, and Attack after deployment. Sadly is is random so you could wind up with a really powerful Devastator Squad Sergeant. In addition he is Leadership 10 and Fearless so he has the longevity to keep a unit in combat for some time.
See you next time as we attempt to corrupt you with the treacherous characters of Chaos Daemons.