Mech Guard: Breaking the mold


So by now, I'm sure everyone has had the wonderful experience of facing down the dreaded Leaf-blower list.  It is a very boring and stale list to fight against, every one being nearly the same with some minor variation on exactly how many Vendettas to run.  Today, I'm going to talk about a few units that I think players could take that would add some spice to the list and make it both less boring to play and less boring to play against.

Lord Castellan Creed

For 90 points, Creed gives you a Tactical Genius leader.  Creed is able to issue 4 orders per turn (hint, use orders sometimes, they're fun) to units within 24", as well as allowing you to scout a single infantry or vehicle unit.  That may seem minor to some people, but the idea of outflanking a unit of Demolishers is enough to make many people cringe.  Also, being able to move that kind of firepower deep into the enemy line before they can react will also be very nice against certain power armored armies.


Now I know that everyone is obsessed with their Psyker Battle Squads, as they should be, but there is another elite that can actually be an ace up your sleeve, the Ogryn.  They're a fair bit expensive at 40 points per model, but each one is giving you 3 WS4 S5 attacks.  When used as a counter charging unit on an objective, they will end up dealing a healthy amount of S6 attacks, which are wounding marines on 2's, force enough saves and those marines will die.  Even though they have a poor save of 5+, they do still have T5, making them almost as hard to wound as MEQ in combat (vs S4).

Infantry Platoons

I know that the core of any net list Leafblower is the veteran squad, but I think that there is a situation or two that you may consider an Infantry platoon.  The biggest reason I see though is Captain Al'rahem, allowing his entire platoon the ability to outflank.  So now imagine your infantry platoon of 4 squads plus a command squad all mounted in Chimeras, arriving on the flank of your opponent, blasting their side armor with a plethora of S6 shots, plus plasma guns from mounted units and 4 of them from the command squad.

Scout Sentinels

On the trend of scouting vehicles, we have Scout Sentinels.  They're lightly armored compared to the chimeras in the rest of the list, but for only 120 points you end up with 3 outflanking autocannons.  Most people immediately jump for the Vendetta, since that is only 10 points more, but has twin-linked lascannons instead of autocannons and AV 12/12/10, but I think the strength in the Sentinels is their ability to actually use cover, as well as tie up enemy units in combat.  Your Vendetta may be pretty and all, but floating 10" above the table means they're usually out in the open, giving the enemy a huge LOS advantage.  Outflank a unit of 3 Scout Sentinels with Autocannons and Hunter Killer missiles to put a dent in some enemy vehicles the turn they arrive.

Armored Sentinels

A bit more expensive than the Scout Sentinels, Armored Sentinels are kind of like mini chimeras with better weapon options.  They wont move terribly fast across the field, but they do get the wonderful autocannon to dish out some S7 pain on enemy transports.  They come equipped with Extra Armor, which doesn't mean much in a squadron, but oh well.  If you manage to get them in combat, they'll really impress you.  Not because of the damage they deal, but because they're front armor 12 means that you need to be S6 to get a glance on them, even S8 fists will only penetrate on a 5+, meaning they are as difficult to kill as a dread, but come in 3x the quantity.

Leman Russes

The Leafblowers I've gone against in the past were loaded up on Hydras and Manticores.  While both give you a lot of bang for the buck, I think there is something to be said for the humble Leman Russ chassis.  Front armor 14 means that they are a huge pain to most Space Wolf lists, and many GK lists will struggle to put a dent in them.  People will always commit a lot of firepower to wiping out a squadron of Russes, especially after a turn of shooting when the Russ squad erases a unit of wolves/knights.  The variety is up to personal preference, though I think the standard battle tank and demolishers are my favorite.  If you know you're going against non MEQ, then the Exterminator isn't a bad choice either, while if you know you're going against a lot of MEQ, upgrading one battle tank to an executioner in a squad will make those marine pants go brown.  When using Creed, I like 3 outflanking Demolishers, nothing says, "I love you" like plopping down 3 pie plates that just obliterate whatever they touch.


This is my favorite unit in the book bar none, the only explanation I can think of for people not taking them in bulk is the lack of a GW model for them.  For 25 less points than a Manticore, you get a 36" range demolisher cannon, a squadron of 2-3 of those pie plates will wipe out most vehicles and any infantry in the area!  I've heard some people complain about the range, but with 36" on a vehicle that is 6" long with a 5" blast, if you deploy on your back line, you are still reaching all but the last 4.5" of the board!


With the rise of GK, a Colossus or two isn't a bad idea, depending on your local metagame.  Long range, S6 AP3 and ignores cover, what better weapon to kill marines with?  Definitely another unit suffering from the lack of support from GW, but it is still worth giving a shot.

Sample list

Here is a list I'm going to give a shot for some giggles:

Company Command Squad:  Lord Creed, 2 Meltaguns: 160 Chimera: Multi-laser, Heavy Flamer: 55

Infantry Platoon: - Command Squad:  Al'rahem, 2 Meltaguns: 120 - Chimera: Multi-laser, Heavy Flamer: 55 - Infantry Squad: Meltagun: 60 - Chimera: Multi-laser, Heavy Flamer: 55 - Infantry Squad: Meltagun: 60 - Chimera: Multi-laser, Heavy Flamer: 55

Veteran Squad: 2 Meltaguns: 90 - Chimera: Multi-laser, Heavy Flamer: 55

Veteran Squad: 2 Meltaguns: 90 - Chimera: Multi-laser, Heavy Flamer: 55

3 Scout Sentinels: Autocannons, Hunter-killer Missiles: 150

1 Manticore: 160 2 Medusa Siege Tanks: 270 2 Leman Russ Demolishers:  Hull Lascannon, Sponson Heavy Bolters: 360

Total: 1850

Obviously, I couldn't fit everything I mentioned into a single list, but this list grabs at a lot of the points I made.  3 outflanking Chimeras with 4 Meltaguns, Scoutting sentinels and Demolishers as well.  It creates an army of IG that is a bit more offensive, but can strike fast and hard, which will always catch people off guard.  Even though it is a pretty tricky list, it does help push away the guilt of playing mech guard.