USAriadna: The Airborne Ranger Tango

As I prepare for Adepticon, I've been getting a lot of practice in with my USAriadna, and one unit in particular has jumped out as my favorite, the Airborn Ranger. They're able to deploy across the board and set up in a prime position with it's SMG to go into Suppressive Fire and really put a kink into your opponents plans. To really hammer this strategy home, I've found a fun little tactic that uses Van Zant for surprisingly more than a homing missile. The whole thing is a bit order intensive, but when it works, you'll end up with 2-3 models in your opponents deployment zone, all in suppressive fire with AP weaponry. I've put together a little tactic for you guys that has worked well for me to hand-deliver a bunch of these jerks right to the enemy's face.

The Units


To make this little maneuver work, you need 1-2 Airborne Rangers, and Van Zant. The airborne rangers are a little expensive (for Ariadna) as well as Zant, so if you do want to do this, you should expect to commit 80 points (since my Rangers are always Forward Observers). You can do this in Vanilla as well, using not only Airborne Rangers but Spetsnaz too if they suit your fancy.

The Maneuver

This strategy can work in as few as 2 orders before you start rolling dice.

  1. We start off by seeing that the side we have designated to bring in our Paratroopers is being covered by an enemy unit.
  2. Our first order is to use Zant's order to bring him in behind the enemy, but within 8". Not wanting to get shot in the back, the enemy turns to face Zant.
  3. Now that his back is turned, your Airborne Ranger is free to walk on the board safely.

Your opponent is now stuck in a position where they are forced to expose their back to either Zant or the Airborne Ranger. If they face Zant, your Airborne Ranger can freely move around (thanks to stealth) and execute unsuspecting enemies, or slay the model covering Zant. If you're using Forward Observers then you also have the added potential of raining down death on the enemy with your Traktor Muls.

After murdering everything in that corner of the board, using stealth you can move into position and go into suppressive fire with a coordinated order, which really creates a nightmare situation for your opponent. With a quarter of the board covered with your AP suppressive fire, your opponent is going to have to risk a lot of models, and expend a lot of orders to dislodge your troops.


How do you get your parachutists safely in the enemy lines? Have you found any more combos using Airborne Rangers or Van Zant? Let me know what works for you!