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Raneth
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Archon Mephitic
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PostSubject: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeWed Sep 21 2011, 22:21

Over the last few months playing with my Dark Eldar, I have become very fond of Hellions. I love the models, the fluff and how they work for me, most of the time. However, since coming to this forum, I have been made aware that I am not using them properly. Is there anyone who can give me some tips on how I should be using them, equipping them, how they should be supported, or just any thoughts and opinions.

My army list is here if you want to see what I'm doing at the moment http://thedarkcity.forummotion.com/t1260-the-first-kabal-of-the-sundered-breeze-1750

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Sky Serpent
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 22 2011, 01:48

I have a bit of experience with Hellions so I hope I can give you some pointers, though I am far from proclaiming myself an expert.

First of all, who has said you are not using them properly and what examples have they given? They are a unit that can be used defensively as under fire on your home objective, going to ground they have a 2+ save, becareful of doing that too often as it will leave them pinned for the next turn. On the charge they are capable of hitting like a freight train. Let's look at some choices in more detail.

Baron Sathonyx. Good, you've taken him, you and I know what he does for the Hellions as well as the army. I won't go into what he does too much then.

Unit size. I feel that 10 is too few and some believe 20 to be too many. I am currently running 12 plus the Baron but when I free up the points I will be running 20. That's 40 splinter pod shots. That's 60 S4 attacks on the charge without even factoring in pain tokens, drugs and the Helliarch. They can multi charge, they can conga line objectives and the myth that they're too big for area terrain saves, pffff, you'll get over half of them in easily. They will soar through anything on the charge.

Quantity. 10 with the Baron is good but after a few casualties will start to feel slightly light so my suggestion is to bump that unit up and drop the other one. Hellions without the Baron feel rather meh to me, even if they are troops. They will die jumping around cover and don't have stealth, Warriors will do their job better. Is two units of 10 working for you though? Then don't change.

Helliarch weapon. Stunclaw, let me tell you a bit about that. A lot of people who I have ever discussed the Stunclaw with have always used the terms 'gimmick' and 'fun' and to some extent, I agree with them. Though of course it doesn't make it a bad choice. Let's look at it, broken down.

Offensive wise it acts exactly the same as a Hellglaive, giving your Helliarch 4 S4 attacks on the charge. With a venom blade you'd take away 5 points and wound everything on a 2+ = immediately better. For the same points you'd get a S3 power weapon and for another 5 on top you'd get an Agoniser. Without factoring in combat drugs, situations and all the mathhammer that comes with it, it is clear it is not the best offensive weapon; in fact the worst of four.

Gimmick and fun time. You can grapple any independant character in the combat at the end of the round and take him off 3D6. First of all this ensures you won't be getting shot by the enemy in their turn. It can have some great effects which are very situational such as taking warlocks from wraithguard, a big mek with KFF away from his toys. All fun and gimmicky. Negatively taking an Ork Warboss away may be a bad idea and most independant characters are capable of chewing up your hellions. Remember any squad assaulting your hellions the next turn will ignore your defensive grenades as you are already locked in combat.

What Baron and the hellions don't have is a power weapon and an Agoniser is there, waiting for you to use. I'd highly recommend it; a Venom Blade will just add more wounds to an already high tally, you want to guarantee a few wounds on that Trygon.

With the Baron with the unit you'd also never need a Phantasm Grenade Launcher.

I hope this is of some use to you. In my last two games (both capture and control) I used them defensively. The first game was against Necrons, dual Monolith and Deciever. They sat on the home objective and didn't do much although they killed the Deciever when he strayed too close. They did what they needed to do but could have done more. In the second they sat on the home objective against Grey Knights and did very little, just taking casualties. What I learned was that I needed to be more offensive with them, using them in tandem with other units to generate some threat levels. Anyway, good luck and let me know how it goes.

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a1elbow
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 22 2011, 04:35

I've found that a lot of people using Hellions, either as a single unit or with a Hellion based list, actually like taking the Stunclaw.

I am in the bad position of everyone I know being pretty well anti-uniques, and without the Baron I find the idea of Hellions laughable so I have never taken them, so my experience is nil. But I find this really interesting since the general consensus is the 'claw sucks, considering much of it is theoryhammer.

Goes to show that too much theoryhammer is in this game.
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Deneris
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 22 2011, 05:55

I usually have a chronos drifing nearby my Hellions to generate those always-useful pain tokens. And I'd heartily agree with taking the Baron AND getting your unit size higher- Hellions are always better en masse.

As for the Stunclaw... I take it, as it adds to the fluff of my lads (Catching choice specimens for my Haemonculi). An agoniser would be more effective, but not as much fun as hauling an IG Commissar/Officer away from his boys...
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Baron Tordeck
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 22 2011, 08:05

I run 10 w/ an agoinser and Baron. They hide in terrain until i need them to go find an objective. Baron keeps them alive while they are terrain hopping and the agoinser is there if they need to bump a unit off that objective they are going for.

They are not an overly aggressive unit but used properly they can be one of the best scorers we can buy. I never leave home without them and Baron.

And I disagree with ever putting Baron w/ beasts. 105 pts just to get the beasts stealth is just a waste of points. Learn to use cover or use that 105 to get a Haemie w/ portal, liquifer gun and still have points left over to pimp his ride, buy a wrack, etc.

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kenny3760
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 22 2011, 13:17

Hellions without the Baron, unthinkable to me, so everything is based on the premise that you are running the Baron in your list. I prefer one unit of about 15 or 16, typically I prefer not to run a Helliarch as I don't think the extra cost is worth it for the options he brings, more on this later.

Fisrt thing they can do is form a screen for your precious transports. Can be tricky to pull off but it can be done and with the Baron and half the unit in cover it can be very effective.

I expect my Hellions to hold at least one objective in any game with objectives in it. How can they do that when they are T3 with a 5+ armour save, obviously they need help. The Baron can help with his stealth rule, giving them a 2+ save if they go to ground, so thats a start. However this can be significantly boosted with FnP, 2+ then 4+, starts to sound like a really resilient unit that could be tough to shift. Again this can be boosted even further by making them fearless, now no matter how many casualties they take from shooting they are staying put.

I would also like them to do a bit of butt kicking every now and then. Base S4, 3 attacks on the charge, defensive and offensive grenades from the Baron, so they should be able to do something eh.
We can fire our splinter pods on the way in so 30 shots, 20 hits, 10 wounds and against marines 2 or 3 dead. My unit of 15 gives 45 attacks, thats 22 hits and 11 wounds, 3 or 4 dead marines, not bad at all. However, we can boost this slightly with FC, now the same unit does about 14 wounds, probably another dead marine. You do get to be Init 7 with FC though which is nice.
The real benefit of FC does not come against troops though it kicks in against vehicles. Same unit comparisons against AV 10 rear armour. Lets asume you need 4's to hit it, so 22 hits and needing 6's only 3 damage rolls. Now at S5 with FC, needing 5's we get 7 damage rolls, some of which may be penetrating, a big improvement. Now if you can get the hits on these vehicles when they have been immobilised or not moved for whatever reason then the damage goes through the roof, likewise if it's taking 6's to hit the damage will plummet. However if you need 6's to hit then the vehicle is moving enough to limit it's options in terms of firing any weapons, so the hellions have already been effective.
I see them as capable of dealing with both infantry and armour.

All this is leading to the importance of Pain Tokems to the unit and how to get them as quickly as possible. I get them 2 tokens by the end of T1, easy to do. Take a heami and 3 wracks. Heami with Hellions to donate his token, wracks with Baron to donate their token and in the movement phase the Hellions and Baron join up to have 2 tokens. A quick kill and its 3.

Helliarch options and why I don't generally take them. As I've said I get my unit 2 PT's on T1.
Agoniser: No benefit from FC, cost you 25 points, I'd rather have the extra body and 3 S5 attacks.
Venom Blade: No benefit from FC, has cost 10 points to get a +1 benefit to wound although the S boost does allow you to re-roll the to wound. Possibly worth it. But I think I can use the points elsewhere more effectively.
Power Weapon: FC gets you a S4 power weapon for 15 points, again I think I'd rather have the extra body and 3 S5 attacks.
Stunclaw: Benefit from FC, however it's cost you 15 points, is situational (need an IC and opportunity to perform hit and run), and again I prefer the extra body.

Hmm, bit of a ramble there, but I hope you get the idea, Pain Tokens are your friend (as always) and can turn your Hellions into defensive and offensive stars. Just be careful what you assault ;-)
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 22 2011, 15:06

Ill go against the normal consensus and say Hellions are not made for assault!!!!

Look at what your points get you, a S4 3 attack model with a jump pack. What does that sound like to you??? assault marines right??? considered assault marines are already considered bad for SM, why should our T3 5+ save version be any better??? They just cant take a hit to save their lives. While other DE units are cheap enough (warriors) or have special ways (wyches) to get around taking damage, our green goblins have nothing protecting them.

What they do bring to the table that is unique is splinterpods. the shooting out of even 10 steller compared to their assault. What I see them for is to harrass an enemy unit till its small enough to assault and whipe out, which you then consolidate back into cover.

Pretty much how I use them is this. Move them up into cover (remember to jumpack next to cover, then run into it) next turn move around in cover to get into a good firing position (dont jump pack) and pick a unit outside of a transport and start shooting it to death. Being outside of rapid fire range you should have a one up on any unit. If they try to get close, or if you have weakened them enough at that point, jump out, assault them, and then consolidate back into cover.

Ofc this is all without Baron. Baron add so much to a squad of hellions that it turns them almost into a decent buy. But even with him they suffer from alot of things.

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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 22 2011, 15:21

As bought as standard Hellions are not made for assault (or anything else really) it's the add-ons through The Baron and PT's that make them worthwhile.
80 points gets you the 2 PT's to make them FnP and FC. As I run 16 plus the Baron that means for under 21 points I am getting a 5+, FnP, S5, I7, 3A, jump infantry scoring model with an assault 2 poisoned gun. Along with having assault and defensive grenades, stealth and hit and run thrown in, I think they are then a pretty decent buy.
Of course your unit of 3 wracks is also scoring and can buy a gunboat, making it the cheapest in the codex.
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 22 2011, 17:45

Thanks, a lot for me to think about there.

@ Sky Serpent - I can't remember who told me, or where it was, but, something along the lines of, I shouldn't be multi assaulting with Hellions, Wyches should be doing it instead (I might be misquoting or misunderstanding, sorry if I am).
Some very helpful information aswell Smile

@ a1elbow - I agree, it shouldn't always be about better numbers, fun should win sometines as well.

@ Kenny - I don't like the idea of having Haemonculi that are just there for pain tokens, are any of their upgrades worth it? The same goes for the wracks, are they worth upgrading to another combat unit, or are they just there?

@ Shadows Revenge - I find that their shooting falls a bit limp for some reason. It might just be because I haven't rolled enough dice with them and I've been getting screwed by the dice gods, but, every time I try I end up wishing I had used a run! move instead.

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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 22 2011, 20:09

If you take the Haemonculi and wracks then the wracks become another troop choice. If you take 3 as I do then that gives you a 3 model infantry unit to camp on an obective near or in your deployment zone. If you can hide them behind a building or other BLOS then so much the better, as the enemy has to expend even more time and effort going after this "worthless" unit, that will ofcourse be going to ground at every opportunity.
Another benefit is that it allows you to purchase a dedicated transport, raider or venom, very cheaply.

Heamonculus, upgrade him with a liquifier and throw him in a transport with a unit of anything for some drive-by flaming, it's a bundle of fun. I just can't find the points in my current tournament list to give him the liquifier. The other upgrades are a bit hit or miss in my opinion, but the shattershard can be pretty devastating if it goes off ok.
For me thats all the Heamonculus is, a pain token donator. He can ofcourse join the wracks for some minor wound allocation shenanigans. Really I find this works pretty well with my list but it's been set up and tuned to work together, what I'm saying here may not suit your playstyle or fit in as well with what your running. Have a look here to see what my list is and how I see it working: http://thedarkcity.forummotion.com/t583-kenny3760-goes-to-war
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 29 2011, 20:12

Hellions are a poor choice that becomes truly amazing when the Baron is joined to them. Grenades, Stealth, improved Hit And Run, reroll dangerous terrain (and if you aren't using that regularly, you are missing out on one of their most ridiculous abilities).

I find that the best way to run Hellions is as a single big block of 20 with the Baron attached. A full turn with shooting and close combat nets you well over 100 attacks on the charge, and that is more than enough to deal with almost anything on the board especially after adding in combat drugs and pain tokens.

The hardest moment in the game is deployment, because you have to find that crucial balance between survivability and threat range. Sometimes, the best way to run these guys is right up against the front line of the deployment zone, and watch as your opponent pulls way back defensively. Other times, it's best to hole up on a terrain objective (preferably with multiple levels and the objective way up at the top) so that your opponent can't just blast you to death.

Crucially, when you commit these guys to an assault, every model must make it into combat especially if you are fighting Nob Bikers, Paladins, or some other nasty CC unit. However, that is not to say that every model should make it into CC with the unit you are assaulting. I find that a great way to deal with such super-squads is to multicharge much weaker units (or one gigantic one such as a blob of Imperial Guard) nearby, preferrably so that the enemy unit is forced to hit the Baron and is unable to get models into assault with the Hellions (though this is somewhat rare).
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Shadows Revenge
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 29 2011, 20:47

the problem is what you described cactus is over 300 points. Look at every other army, and see what you get for the same amount. Its hardly even matches up (termies w/ LR, Nob bikerz w/ Boss, heck, even a seer council. Also most people have pulled away from deathstar style armies for a reason. They get picked off too much by fire.

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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 29 2011, 21:05

Yeah, plus, as a Deathstar, Hellions are *decidedly* on the weak end of the scale. They're Scout Marines with Jump Packs and better initiative - ooooh, scary. Wink

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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 29 2011, 21:19

Shadows Revenge wrote:
the problem is what you described cactus is over 300 points. Look at every other army, and see what you get for the same amount. Its hardly even matches up (termies w/ LR, Nob bikerz w/ Boss, heck, even a seer council. Also most people have pulled away from deathstar style armies for a reason. They get picked off too much by fire.

I've killed all these armies with the Hellions (save the Landraiders, of course).

You are right, it's an expensive unit. All kitted, it's slightly less expensive than 2 Razorwing fighters with Ravager backup. But it does the job that a unit that size ought to do, and i find that it does it quite consistently when used correctly.
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 29 2011, 21:40

Hellions ought to be putting...let's see, 20, Hellions 57 attacks, plus Agoniser, plus Baron = 1 Power weapon wound and 16.47 regular wounds into a squad of Biker Nobs save half, FNP half for 5.11 wounds to the Nobs presuming no invulnerables for the Agoniser. Quite possibly resulting in no dead Nobs. Nob swingback is dependent but...I would expect more than 5-6 dead Hellions unless it's a wuss squad of Nob Bikers.

I guess that's workable as long as you shoot them up a fair bit first...though then again, arguably the Orks would get to shoot up the Hellions a fair bit first as well - awkward comparison.

21.77 regular and 1 Agoniser versus Termies equals 3.92 dead Termies (presuming at least 1 Thundershield in there) - or 4 dead Termies. Depending on the Termie loadout I could see that working as long as it's a small squad of Termies...and depending on if there was an IC in there. So by weight of attacks I could see them beating the Termies.

Too lazy to figure Seerbikes right now - my gut says it would be a bit more of a grind - but than Seerbikes usually prefer to avoid big mob squads.

All numbers done giving FC to the Hellions. No drug effect included.


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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeFri Sep 30 2011, 14:45

My Hellions cost me me 441 points total to kit out. 16 hellions, the baron, 1 heami and 3 wracks. Sounds crazy when I read that back but I'm quite happy with the way it works. Never thought of them as a deathstar unit and try not to use them as such.
Part of the issue with trying to figure out what these guys can do is that the hit and run rule can drastically change the outcome of a combat. Nothing like jumping out, pumping the unit full of poison and then smashing into them again with another 3 S5 attacks.

I'm in the process of writing up a Hellions tactica/justification of how I use them, that I'll post up on here once it's done. It's interesting doing it and finding out just how they do work. As a quick comparison I ran some numbers against similiar priced units using 10 hellions as base giving a unit cost of 160 points. The units I ran them against were wyches, warriors and SM tactical squad. If the hellions get the jump ie, get a round of shooting in first, they win each of these match ups, if they get jumped on they lose. That was with naked hellions, I'm moving on to my "Superstar" unit next to run some more comparisons.

I don't think they'll match up too well in some instances, but then again that is not what, for me anyway, the unit is all about. It has many more functions than an assault/combat unit and I'll hopefully be able to bring that out in the writing.
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeFri Sep 30 2011, 15:38

I really look forward to that article.

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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeFri Sep 30 2011, 20:31

kenny3760 wrote:
I'm in the process of writing up a Hellions tactica/justification of how I use them, that I'll post up on here once it's done.

I will also be looking forward to it.

I still remember the bad press they got when the codex came out and they have become an underdog ever since. I have used them in a smaller squad of 10 in a wwp list 2 or 3 times now and they are surprising the heck out of me (especially when I got the strength drug and had gotten their 2nd pain token) and the whole hit and run thing literally catapults them across the board.

Looking forward to using them more and in larger squads soon.
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeFri Sep 30 2011, 20:37

In line with what Kiwi said, I've found Hellions ('pods) remarkably proficient at claiming Pain tokens at a rapid pace. And once FC kicks in, I cannot help but be impressed by these guys.

Still can't picture myself fielding units over 6 though.

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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeSat Oct 01 2011, 07:35

Don't hold yopur breath waiting on it guys, I'm at the start of a very busy period at work. I holed one of my kayaks and broke a paddle in the last week, so I am working lots of overtime to buy replacements. I also have 2 40k tournaments this month so free time is limited, but I'll get it done eventually.
It's good to see other people getting a kick out of them as well though.
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeSat Oct 01 2011, 14:45

I hear a lot about comparing Hellions to other choices for the same points.

I run 14 Hellions with the Baron, coming in att 344pts.

Now comparing them to TH/SS Terminators. You can get 7 Terminators with TH/SS- They have no transport, so can only move 6 and assult 6. They have NO ranged attack at all. In assault they will get 22 attacks in combat at I1. They cannot sweeping Advance. And if you try and Deep strike them in, they sit for a turn and get shot.

Now compared to my unit of Hellions, hey have a 12" move, 6" Assault. Can fly over terrain and have skilled flyer to re roll DT tests. They can pump out 30 poisoned shots before an assault. They will dish out 48 attacks at I7, And have the ability to Hit and Run when needed. And can hide in cover fora 3+ cover save. And if really needed and go to ground for a 2+ cover.

Now in this I considered the Pain tokens given by Wracks and a Haemie. But I will not count them as part of the cost for the unit as I still have a use for the Wracks and Haemie in the Venom. I also did not factor in the Combat Drugs which could add a number of benifits. Extra Attacks, Extra Strength. Even making them Fearless.

WhenComparing them to any other Jump Infantry with an IC. Hellions can kill them in no tim with the mass of shots and a solid assault. As well as comparign them to other Fast Attack options, They stack up great against Bikes again firing the sheer mass of Poison shots, that takes away the T bonus for being mounted, and in assault they still will do a lot of damage on the charge with I7. The only place I see them lacking is against AT. But that beig said, With Furious Charge they are still S5 and can use there spped to get behind transports and Tanks and cause problems. And if they get the +1 Str CD they are very dangerous to vehicles.

This is all based upon my own personal expeirence and opinion. I may not be right abou teverythign here. But I am confident that Hellions are a solid choice with The Baron. And I will not play a game withiout them. Plus the Fluff for them now, and the new models are amazing.
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeSat Oct 01 2011, 14:48

Its 8 terminators plus change for 344 points... and while you have double the wounds, you are in no way just going to blast them off the table... make no mistake these are tough!

Comparing hellions to Thundershield termies is apples and oranges...

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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeSat Oct 01 2011, 15:35

I was only using the Comparison based on points that was brought up earlier in the thread. Based on Terminators.

Now according ot Mathhammer The Hellions would be able to jump in and unleash 30 shot, 15 hit, 7.5 wound = 1 kill

After assaulting they would be able to deal 48 attacks. 24 hit, 16 wounds, 3 dead Terminators

That would leave 4 Terminators with 9 attacks, 4.5 hits, 3 dead Hellions

So after the first round that would be 3 dead Hellions and 4 dead Terminators

Second round, Hellions would throw 38 attacks, 19 hits, 9.5 wounds 1 dead terminator.

Term would deal out 7 attacks, 3.5 wounds 2 dead hellions.

Then the hellions could Hit and run and start all over with poison shots and a killer assault. With still a squad of 10 Hellions against 3 Terminators

Hellions would unleash 20 shots 10 hits 5 wounds. 1 Dead Term.
Assault with 32 attacks, 16 hits 11 wounds 2 dead terminators.

Squad would be killed. Now this is also not considering any Comat drug rolls. The unit is still very viable against A unit of terminators. I also know Math hammer means nothing in a real game, but the odds are that the hellions are just as viable as TH/SS Terminators. I just believe Hellions are much more versatile a unit that can do many things for their points.
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Cailos
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeSat Oct 01 2011, 15:44

If you really want to make to compare them with something. Compare them to Vanguard Veterns with a cheap Chaplain.
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kenny3760
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitimeSat Oct 01 2011, 16:44

@ Aniasis, how are any of your hellions surviving being hit by a thunderhammer or a power weapon for that matter? I usually find mine fall over if a terminator takes a sideways glance at them, am I missing something?
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PostSubject: Re: Help with Hellions   Help with Hellions I_icon_minitime

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