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 How to play Reaver Jetbikes

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Grimoire
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Zenotaph
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PostSubject: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeWed Aug 18 2021, 00:37

Well, since we stumble upon this question very often and in various threads, I think they deserve their own topic.

For starters: 18", 3+/3+, S3, T4, 2W, 3A, Ld7, 4+ are the basic stats. The Champion has an additional A & Ld.
They are armed with a Splinterrifle and -pistol and Bladevanes, S+1, AP-1, D1, can advance 8" and have access to combat drugs.

For every 3 bikes you can equip either a Blaster or Heatlance and either a Grav-Talon or a Cluster-Caltrops launcher.
Lastly the Arena Champion could carry Agonizer or Powersword.
Thats all there is in their datasheet. 20pts per model, usually taken in groups of multiples of 3.

Now it starts to get both interessting and complicated. What to do with them?
Rushing forward, charging as soon as possible? Probably a bad idea.
Keeping them in reserve, waiting for the right moment, that may or may not come?
To be honest, I did both in a couple of games. It was mostly a waste of points.
But sometimes, just sometimes, their phenomenal speed allowed me to tip the scale.
Chipping away the last few wounds of a Slaneesh Hellbrute, before it could shoot. Twice...
Or charge a blob Repentias, before they could swing their really big chainswords at my Succubus.
And believe me, she really had other things to do. Fighting Celestine, for example...

But more often, most of the time actually, I cannot figure out, what to do with them.
Sure, I still bring them to the table, hoping for a situation they can shine in.

Hence this thread here! How do you play them?
Ok, I know we got some clowns in the forum and I bet, they want to write:
Best way to use Reavers is leaving them on the shelf.
But please, pretty please, dont...

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeWed Aug 18 2021, 12:35

As someone who has run Reavers in every list since we got our new codex, I have a little to add.

My main reason for bringing the Reavers is the MW output, mostly to deal with C'Tan. Because we dont get psykic powers, I feel that the Reavers sort-of fill that role.

Being able to advance 26" (while still shooting blasters, and Charging after Turn 2) gives you a lot of range to pop the Evisorating Flyby strat. If some foolish Monkeigh walks within 13" of your Reavers, you can pop out, touch his base, then fly back to where you started. Basically free MWs (not counting the 2CP).

I have never met a Competitive player willing to get that close to the Reavers, but I live in hope.

Generally my Reavers just sit on the back edge, screening out enemy Deepstrike around my Ravager. The enemy knows if they get within 34" (26" advance + 7" average charge distance +1" for Cult of Strife) I will start throwing out MWs, which gives a very large "dont come here" zone. In actuality, the amount of damage isnt that much, but the POTENTIAL is quite scary.

Once in CC, I dont think the Reavers have much punch. Those Grav Talons on the charge are scary, but three S4 AP1 attacks are not that great for a model that costs around 25pts. Their durability is OK if you can pop the Invigorated by Evisoration strat by killing a weak unit in CC.

Reavers are probably the most versatile unit able to take Drugs. The only drug they dont really want is +1WS (because we get it for free starting Turn 3), but even that isnt actually BAD. I think the worse combination is +1WS and +1S, which is still pretty darn good IMHO. For the longest time I was rolling 2 drugs, but have been experimenting with +2"M lately. Im thinking of taking the +1A drug next time (my napkin math says that may be best from an offensive point of view), but there really are no wrong answers (thats right kids, Drugs are good!).

Thats my $0.02 anyway. What do the rest of you think?

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeWed Aug 18 2021, 14:32

really useful topic!
Cause right now Reavers are my only big question mark in our codex.
I discovered how to play our Archon (my last big question mark lol), but reavers are still evading me.
My concern is that they don't seem to fit naturally in any obsession (except lately i wanted to experiment the Agile Hunter custom obsession to see if this could work with them).

I also want to try them in a Cursed Blade detachment for the natural +1S, so now 3A at S5 -1 1 per model (with blade artist), equiped with the Grav Talon can lead, i think, to some serious melee damages, allowing even more freedom in the drug department.

Please note that i NEVER tried anything i've written here, i'm just wondering if this could viable.......sadly they are so overshadowed by the Hellions right now i think, i rarely find rooms for Reavers Sad
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeWed Aug 18 2021, 16:16

I think there is a pretty big difference between Hellions and Reavers. Reavers are more of an "all round" toolbox unit, where Hellions are a dedicated Close Combat unit.

Reavers are faster, do MWs on the charge, have slightly better armor, have guns that are actually good (which can shoot when you advance, and have access to the +1BS drug).

Hellions are better at combat with D2 weapons, are slightly cheaper, have the Infantry keyword and thats kinda it. They are slower, have minimal shooting, equal durability, equal access to strats (reroll wounds and +1AP from CoS). The main benefit in my mind is the Infantry keyword, to perform actions and make use of cover.
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeWed Aug 18 2021, 16:31

This Opinion is is taken from Skari, and I can agree with. Reavers are all of the above, but also character snipers. If you really need that buffing infantry character gone and they are within 26 inches. Move up and touch with one bike and finish movement more than 1 inch away from enemy and Evisorating Flyby. and if you don't kill it and you were able to position well you could shoot it, then charge it. They are one of the few Units that can deal damage in 4 of the 7 phases of your turn.
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeWed Aug 18 2021, 23:01

Seriously dumb question regarding the Invigorated by Evisceration Strategem

Opened up my 9th DE Codex and looked for details on this ........... I found nothing. So, I'm either stupid because I can't see it, likely, or it's not in the Codex at all. Perhaps Book of Rust ?

Sigh ..................
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeWed Aug 18 2021, 23:46

So, you pack 9 Reavers in your list for 1 strat from the book of rust? And when you dont play Leliths bitches?
What would you do then with your Jetbikes? Should I guess? I guess, you play CoS only, right?
After all its so much easier, when you get all the goodies, toys and strats shoved up the... Well, you get the picture.

Surprise!! This thread here is about playing units right, not choosing the best faction.

Edit: I thought about it. For circa 5-7 minutes. Why do you think so highly about a strat that gives a 4++ after killing a unit?

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeThu Aug 19 2021, 01:37

Grimoire wrote:
Seriously dumb question regarding the Invigorated by Evisceration Strategem

Opened up my 9th DE Codex and looked for details on this ........... I found nothing. So, I'm either stupid because I can't see it, likely, or it's not in the Codex at all. Perhaps Book of Rust ?

Sigh ..................

Yeah, it's in Book of Rust. Gives a 4++ save after a unit kills an enemy unit in melee, which makes large units considerably more survivable - there's a big difference between 4+/6++ and 4++, especially when you're thinking about the kinds of weaponry which will want to target T4 W2 models.

If you don't want to play Strife for whatever reason, then smaller units seems more viable to me. If you're not relying on strat efficiency then units of three Reavers make for good troubleshooters - either zooming to objectives or plinking wounds off problem enemies.

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeThu Aug 19 2021, 12:25

Ya, CoS is just miles ahead of the other Cults. And Cults are already the best subfaction in our codex IMHO.

Reavers actually benefit the least from CoS, due to lacking the Infantry keyword. This is where the Hellions start to shine.

But even the basic CoS Cult ability to always Fight First and get the +1 to charge unengaged units is pretty big for Reavers. Extra movement on an already fast unit just makes the mobility bonkers. Being able to move 36" in a turn (with the +2"M drug) means that they can actually afford to sit in the back field and survive for a few turns, prolonging that Damage Potential and forcing the opponent to stay out of nearly half the table for a few turns with their important buffing characters.

Invigorated by Evisoration (from the Book of Rust) is just icing on the cake. There are quite a few abilities out there for turning off Invulnerable saves (mostly psykic powers for loyalist and chaos marines), so you got to keep that in mind.

Cursed Blade for S5 weapons doesnt really turn my crank, and Red Grief literally gives the Reavers nothing (since you automatically Advance +8" and dont roll dice). I would be curious to see what a Custom Cult with Slashing Impact does (since it increases that MW output, in the Charge Phase instead of Fight Phase), but the opportunity cost of not taking CoS is too great for my Competitive nature.

I cant remember a single game where the Reavers were an MVP or took out someting important. In my experience the most impact they have on games is to make that "stay away from here or die" zone. Which is actually a "stay away from here or you could potentially die, maybe, about 30% of the time" zone, but its basically the same thing in my experience Razz
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeThu Aug 19 2021, 13:23

thanks for all the input guys regarding the Reavers!
Lot of stuff to take into consideration

btw @fisheyes the reason why i'm comparing the Hellions and Reavers is simply because of their battlefield role slot. I know they fulfill totally different role and playstyle once in the game.

However, i don't intend to play with the book of rust (which i already own btw) until at least a year or two, until i'm not alone playing at my pretzel&beer game with 2x more strats than my opponents and a vast selection of WT or relics.........because i play casual funny games, for me this is close to cheating (i'm not talking competitive scene here, so please don't throw stones at me for making that bold claim!).

But i gotta say that after reading your comments, i really want to build a list that will use those Reavers Smile I'm already working on a 1000pts list focusing on them Wink
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeThu Aug 19 2021, 18:10

Dont worry, I wont throw stones. *grabs a boulder*

Ya, just for this post topic I am trying to keep this Reaver focused.

They are amazing models, that are really easy to build and paint, and are a real "centerpiece" to an army (mine at least).

For sure CoS is bonkers good. Limiting yourself to play at the same level as your gaming group is a good thing. Gives you a better grasp of the game and makes you a better player overall.

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeThu Aug 19 2021, 19:35

exactly why i want to do a list that use (or even abuse) them: they are so good looking models!!!
i have 18 of them waiting for me to cause carnage on the battlefield!!
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeThu Aug 19 2021, 20:12

Something like that:

++ Patrol Detachment 0CP (Aeldari - Drukhari) [6CP, 49 PL, 1,000pts] ++

+ Configuration +

Battle Size [6CP]: 2. Incursion (51-100 Total PL / 501-1000 Points)

Detachment Command Cost

Gametype

Obsession
. *Custom Cult*: Precise Killers, Stimulant Innovators

Raiding Forces - CP Refund

+ HQ +

Succubus [75pts, 4 PL]: 1 - Adrenalight (Combat Drug), Dancer's Edge, Precision Blows, Warlord
. Blast Pistol & Archite Glaive
. Show Stealer (Custom): Show Stealer

+ Troops +

Hekatrix Bloodbrides [135pts, 8 PL]: *Random x 2* (Combat Drug)
. Hekatrix: Hekatarii Blade, Splinter Pistol
. 7x Hekatrix Bloodbride: 7x Hekatarii Blade, 7x Plasma Grenades, 7x Splinter Pistol
. Hekatrix Bloodbride w/ Razorflails: Razorflails
. Hekatrix Bloodbride w/ Shardnet and Impaler: Shardnet and Impaler

Wyches [50pts, 3 PL]: 1 - Adrenalight (Combat Drug)
. Hekatrix: Hekatarii Blade, Splinter Pistol
. 4x Wych: 4x Hekatarii Blade, 4x Plasma Grenades, 4x Splinter Pistol

+ Elites +

Incubi [80pts, 4 PL]
. 4x Incubi: 4x Klaive
. Klaivex: Klaive

+ Fast Attack +

Reavers [225pts, 9 PL]: 3 - Hypex (Combat Drug), 3x Grav-talon
. Arena Champion: Blaster
. 6x Reaver: 6x Bladevanes, 6x Splinter Pistol, 6x Splinter Rifle
. Reaver with special weapon (up to 1 for 3 models): Blaster
. Reaver with special weapon (up to 1 for 3 models): Blaster

Reavers [225pts, 9 PL]: 3 - Hypex (Combat Drug), 3x Grav-talon
. Arena Champion: Blaster
. 6x Reaver: 6x Bladevanes, 6x Splinter Pistol, 6x Splinter Rifle
. Reaver with special weapon (up to 1 for 3 models): Blaster
. Reaver with special weapon (up to 1 for 3 models): Blaster

+ Dedicated Transport +

Raider [6 PL, 105pts]: Dark Lance, Grisly Trophies, Phantasm Grenade Launcher, Wych Cult

Raider [6 PL, 105pts]: Dark Lance, Grisly Trophies, Phantasm Grenade Launcher, Wych Cult

++ Total: [49 PL, 6CP, 1,000pts] ++

Created with BattleScribe

I would call that list Reaver heavy. Not much Dark Lances, but how much vehicles can be in a 1000pts list?

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeFri Aug 20 2021, 14:16

nice list you got there!
however, knowing you play with Hypex CD, you already have a lot of movement, do you really think you will advance that much? Maybe Heat Lance would be better, especially knowing you are lacking on the anti-tank department.

Other than that i really find this list inspiring and good Smile
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeFri Aug 20 2021, 14:39

Uh, Blasters are anti tank...

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeFri Aug 20 2021, 15:33

d6 sucks vs D6+2 imho :/
They are the same price, so i don't see why you would sacrifice +2D just for some rare occasion that you will advance.....If you say that you advance almost every turn, then go ahead with the blasters, that's for sure. But as i did not play a lot with those Reavers, i don't know if you have to advance a lot of time (i'm not judging the decision here, i only try to understand Wink )
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeFri Aug 20 2021, 15:47

I thought about utilizing speed at all costs in that list. Personally, my Reavers use Heatlances and Splintermind.
Since its two units, maybe I could go 50/50...

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeFri Aug 20 2021, 16:02

i like the idea of 50/50
Lately, even my scourges i like to equip them with 2x Blasters and 2x Heat Lance (when i can't afford 4x dark Lance) just to allow them to have a good balance of accuracy and firepower
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeFri Aug 20 2021, 16:27

But Jetbikes dont suffer the movement penalty when firing heavy weapons.

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeFri Aug 20 2021, 16:52

ho that i know, it was just a little link to another unit Wink
Back to Reavers, i would make one unit with Blasters and the other with Heat Lance, that way one unit can be full mobile while the other can snipe the tanks (that's the reason of my link with the Scourges, instead of putting all your eggs in one basket, you open the possibilities)
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeTue Aug 24 2021, 12:45

During my test phase with the Heat Lance vs Blaster, I found that the Advancing was just too important. Because of how valuable the squad is (when only taking 1), you need to keep them back until the board is a little less cluttered with enemy units.

When you finally enter the battle, they generally needed that extra 8" to get where they were needed. And I almost never got off a Heat Lance volley as a result. I think there was only 1 game where I made a charge, popped Invigorated by Evisoration, and actually lived to see the next turn (and use the Heat Lance).

But 99% of games they get one charge in, then die. And having that single Blaster shot at BS4 is better than no shot at all.

But this is using my gaming style. I do know others have been successful using them as a mobile gun boat who happens to be able to punch things, rather than the reverse.

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeTue Aug 24 2021, 14:14

love that analysis and makes a lot of senses!
Would putting them in reinforcement be something viable in your opinion?
Instead of keeping them in the backfield?
It's a CP investment so i'm not sure, but who knows?
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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeTue Aug 24 2021, 15:18

You are talking the Warp Portal? 1CP for popping a squad of T4, 2W in the opponents backyard?
You need a lot of space for them. After all, they arent the usual 1" base models.

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeTue Aug 24 2021, 17:17

IDK how much value you get from that CP.

If your playing against a bunch of Death Guard PBCs with their D2 indirect fire? Even still I think you want them on the table (otherwise your Raiders will get targetted, and those are much more important)

I really dont like deploying 9" away from the enemy, and sitting there for a turn. I think (for my play style) its better to remain on the table for that sweet 36" boost. IMHO you get closer to your target that way, and save the CP.

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PostSubject: Re: How to play Reaver Jetbikes   How to play Reaver Jetbikes I_icon_minitimeTue Aug 24 2021, 17:27

Not a ton of experience here, but I seem to recall that during 8th Cult of the Red Grief was the go-to for Reavers but it seems that the pendulum has swung to CoS in 9th ? Of course this was based on playing on slightly bigger tables than what GW suggests.

Thoughts ?
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