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 Please explain the Wave Serpent to me

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Finn
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orestes85
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PostSubject: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeThu May 15 2014, 17:20

Hey guys, for the past year or so I guess, all I've been reading about is how overpowered Wave Serpents are. To break my ever increasing losing streak (7 games now), I went out and purchased one and have added it as an allied detachment to my DE force.

I guess I was really naïve to think that one model would really turn my luck around. I've tried it with Dire Avengers & Guardians inside. However the few games I've played with it, its really underperformed for me. Sure it can take some punishment unlike the rest of my force but I thought it was really good offensively too.

The shield with D6+1 STR7, isn't all that impressive now that I've used it. I play mostly marine armies so ignoring cover and hitting marines with a 3+ save doesn't strike fear in my opponents.

Can someone explain why they are so revered, or explain how I can properly use it on the battlefield. I don't pretend to be a good player (I'm terrible) so any advice would be much appreciated.
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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeThu May 15 2014, 19:39

Hm, the shield isn't really meant as an offensive weapon. Use a brightlance instead. If I'm correct
with the rules, it should be twin-linked. Also upgrade to a shuriken cannon. So, what do have now?
A dedicated transport, costing 130 pnts, which can deal with even the heaviest tank and a really great defense.

And 12 men squads are pretty fast, wherever you want them.

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ligolski
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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeThu May 15 2014, 21:06

Generally, wave serpents are incredibly hard to kill because you can take things like holo shields which increase its ability to jink. Furthermore, the shield if not fired means you can turn pens into glances...once again more durable.

However, being able to fire the shield is great for soft targets hiding in cover. Marines wont show its power. If you fired it at guard or something with a jink save they will be sad. I generally run mine with twin-linked scatter laser (if you hit with this...and its twin linked...then it causes the rest of the weapons including the shield to be twin-linked), holo fields, and shuriken cannon.

Its really all about the fact it doesn't die easily and has decent fire output for something so mobile and beefy.

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeThu May 15 2014, 21:42

The reason its feared is that it is good against all targets in the game. It is also a pinning weapon. It is also easily twinlinked. There arent many things that put out that kind fo dakka.

also: it is a tough hull and can be reserved and then used to steal objectives without the same level of fear about getting destroyed quickly. While its no more invulnerable than anything else... Its plenty tough enough to justify.

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeFri May 16 2014, 01:06

A single Wave Serpent isn't feared at all, that's not so much of a problem, its when you start fielding 4 or 5 of them that people start getting headaches. I struggle against my opponents 2 most times and would hate for him to start taking more (thankfully we're not into that).

So yeah, Wave Serpent is meh, Wave Serpent Spam is another matter.
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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeFri May 16 2014, 03:31

Well for one it's not the wave serpent that is feared. It is wave serpent spam! Much like, one venom in a Dark Eldar is hardly scary, but twelve is outright outrageous!

Not really explaining the wave serpent to you here as other have done that, but if you're tired of losing to marines field disintegrator cannons. The wave serpent is unnecessary. Good marine players stick their marines in cover. Most marines players do not. Disintegrators will teach marine players valuable lesson about cover or send them home crying. Or in other words, a ravager with three disintegrator cannons will do far more for you than one wave serpent.

but against other armies, like ours, popping the shield as a weapon will be disastrous for your enemy.

The last time I played wave serpent spam I got creamed. D6+1 S7 shots on AV10 armor? Each wave serpent (he had five) made a transport explode. I lost over a quarter of my army on the first turn.

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeFri May 16 2014, 04:40

Maybe if you tell us more about your list, and they types of lists you play against we would be able to give some more specific advice. Marines cover a lot of area as far as play styles and lists go. As Expletive mentioned disintegrators can make marines cry, but you have to sacrifice anti-tank to get them. A lot of players have shifted away from vehicles so it may not be a big deal.

A wave serpent isn't that great vs marines, but I like them with scatter lasers and shuriken cannon. You won't get through marine armor but you will force a lot of saves. Generally I would use one wave servant with a troop choice to grab an objective mid to late game. Your troop gets out and you park the serpent in front relying on its durability. I keep the troop choice cheap like 5 dire avengers. This is less efficient version of the 3 jet bike objective grab. It is far more flexible though.
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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeFri May 16 2014, 16:34

Thanks, for all the answers.

So to summarize, the sole Wave Serpent advantage is it's durability and better used to help secure objectives. Equip a Shuriken Cannon & Scatter Laser, so keep the shield for defense against marine armies.

The rest of my list looks like 3 venoms w/ warriors, a raider with HQ+Grots/Incubi, 2xRavagers and Jetbikes. My problem is with going with disintegrators is that in my meta, once I run out of lances I am normally in trouble. And my friends all know to go after my Ravagers first.
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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeFri May 16 2014, 17:22

Then use a twin-linked bright lance instead of the scatter laser.

The rest of your army looks like dark eldar. Is it possible to get whole list?

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeFri May 16 2014, 18:22

Unorthodoxy wrote:
The reason its feared is that it is good against all targets in the game.  It is also a pinning weapon.  It is also easily twinlinked.  There arent many things that put out that kind fo dakka.

also:  it is a tough hull and can be reserved and then used to steal objectives without the same level of fear about getting destroyed quickly. While its no more invulnerable than anything else...  Its plenty tough enough to justify.
I second this and will add the range on said weapon is ridiculous. And again spam is where things get difficult. In your case it sounds like you added a unit with a feared reputation to help out.. but is it the right tool? This is still a game of matchups largely and if you bring the wrong tools or match them up wrong, well you will probably lose.

Also consider that besides taking out light armour and flyers (this is valid) the WS itself brings more of what you already have.. ap- anti infantry. Giving it a single lance shot just makes it worse IMO and the shurican cannon is not needed either. One because the targets are not the same for these weapons and most importantly it steals the power of every other weapon by taking twin linked away from them (no laser lock). The other because its not really that good (unless you just have points laying around which if you are allying in WS you wont).

Now what is inside the serpent? If your facing meq a lot consider a tooled up unit of dragons. This unit will reliably erase one unit from the game. Any unit. Then hang around to cause trouble if not dealt with quickly. Its a fear factor too. Give them the serpent keep the shields up and watch your opponent react. Consider vectored engines for flexibility. I assume you are taking a jetseer. If not consider fitting the allied HQ inside here instead to buff them.
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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeFri May 16 2014, 23:13

Also there isn't a simple answer like never shoot the shield, or always shoot the shield. If nothing is likely to pen then go ahead and shoot it. It has a huge range so it can add some damage to units across the board.

When shooting with the wave serpent remember to use proper target priority. It has a lot str 6-7 so it can mess up light vehicle, side, and rear armor leaving the tougher targets to your lances.

Do you warriors have Blasters? How did you equip your Reavers? if you are running caltrops you may want to change to heat lances or Blasters if you need more anti-tank.

If you deploy your warriors in venoms try deploying them in cover (preferably area terrain) instead then go to ground whenever they are shot at. It will increase target saturation and make the enemy have to choose. This drastically improves their survivability so you can have them hop into venoms later and go off to claim objectives in turn 4 or 5
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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeSat May 17 2014, 06:25

I usually run one wave serpent in my list and the guys are usually never inside. Its primary role is anti-air. Secondary role is a mobile wall and fire support.

An armor 12 vehicle with a 3+ cover save running at the vanguard is pretty stout. Especially if it has the shield to deflect penetrating hits.

Agree with others though, one isn't super scary. 3-5 is scary.
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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeThu May 22 2014, 05:50

I keep meaning to try 3 of them in an allied contingent just to surprise the heck out of my opponent. But my usual game size is 1500 points and it is hard to fit that much in there.
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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeThu May 22 2014, 11:20

Zenotaph wrote:
Then use a twin-linked bright lance instead of the scatter laser.

Ignore this advice. Always run scatter lasers. ALWAYS.

The twin linked shield is horrible vs light armour or even flyers and adding a cannon on the chin it has even more punch

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeThu May 22 2014, 11:37

I'll second Massaen the scatter laser is definietly the way to go. With it the serpent becomes a potent AA tank.

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeThu May 22 2014, 11:59

Changes in 7e will certainly effect how Wave Serpents are used. Jink is now 4+, presumably 3+ with Holo-field, but you have to choose to use it before any hit rolls are made and count as snap firing (BS1) on your turn. Not yet clear if going flat out still gives a further +1 to the jink save.

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeFri May 23 2014, 00:34

Oh i PRAY the Wave Serpents Jink now. PLEASE jink. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE Jink.

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeFri May 23 2014, 01:01

Unorthodoxy wrote:
Oh i PRAY the Wave Serpents Jink now.  PLEASE jink.  PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE Jink.

I know right? They will be annoying to kill still...more than ever but at least they have to make the jink decision before they are hit. So you force choices, which is good. At that point, if its jinking you might as well just use it as AA since you need 6's anyways.

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeSat May 24 2014, 02:03

With TL scatter lasers you can still expect a hit which in turn adds a Shuriken cannon hit and a serpent shield hit on averages at BS1

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeSat May 24 2014, 15:39

Shuricannons are kinda of trap option. Shields are usually far more devastating, and those 10 pts could be spent on Holo-Fields.

WS has a 48" effective (12" move + 36" Laser), and due to wounding most infantry/bikes on 2+ or 3+, it puts a quite hefty amount of pressure on enemy. Four (and it's far from limit) WS could inflict massive casualties, while your other units try to cripple their big guns which can hurt your little snakes.

Alternatively, one can use it as a reliable transport to deliver close-ranged troops - Wraithguard, Guardians or some Aspect Infantry - and support them with firepower once they've arrived into the enemy's position.
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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeSun May 25 2014, 07:34

I disagree, the cannon when combined with the laser means snap shots are viable with it and it's pseudo rend capacity can finish off monsters with a little luck. There are also times you don't want to shoot the shield

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeSun Jun 29 2014, 17:38

as for the cannon, I've had one of my raiders explode from that thing snap shotting. Its far from useless. Especially if you want to kill fliers. Scatter laser will twin link it, and str 6 isnt nothing to sneeze at against a usually armor 10 flier
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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeMon Oct 06 2014, 18:47

One Serpent is nothing. Several Serpents can kill almost anything, including AV12 fliers.

Never leave home without the scatter laser turret. Replace catapults with shuriken cannons only when you can afford it.

Avoid being assaulted at all cost and beware outflanking Kroot blobs Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeFri Oct 17 2014, 18:54

The thing about the Wave Serpents is that it's a better gunship than almost anything in its price category.

For the price of 120 for just the Scatter Laser, you're getting a Fast Skimmer that can move 12" and fire two weapons.  One weapon is a 4-shot 36" BS4 twin-linked S6 weapon, which makes the next weapon, a 60" range, S7 D6+1 Ignore Cover weapon, twin-linked as well.  The accuracy and firepower output is similar to 3 Chimeras and 5 Autocannons, all one one ship, and with much better movement, which means less cover and more side-armor for your ship.

Durability wise, it's second to none.  AV12/3HP is the sweat spot for a ship that price, and with the recent vehicle damage changes in 7th, it's almost impossible to destroy unless you're using AP2 or better weaponry.  When you try to shoot at this thing, it has the ability to Jink for 4+, but it can also have 3+ if it took Holo-fields.  That means passively, behind Ruins, you're always getting a 3+ cover as long as you move.  If you roll anything on the table from 1-3, he's essentially ignoring it on a 2+ if he has Spirit Stones, which means his weapons will keep on hitting (3 Chimeras, 5 Auto-cannons).  If you Stun him, he's saving that on a 4+.  If you pen him, and he hasn't used his Serpent Shield just yet (say it's opening turn), he reduces it to a Glance on a 2+.

Because of the accuracy, it can kill flyers as well, so Eldar players can save points on other areas of the army.  All you need is to roll a single 6 to paint it with the Scatter Laser, before you shoot at it with the S7 Ignore Cover, which at that point, is a slightly weaker Quad-gun.  S7 Ignore Cover is really solid vs. flyers.

Oh, and its a transport, so because it moves 12" and shoots well, it's also bringing the deadly payload of Fire Dragons, Wraithguards, and Dire Avengers closer and closer to your lines.

It just does everything: kills infantry, kills medium tanks, kills flyers, transport units, is extremely durable, its competitively priced..etc.  Not only does it does everything, but it does everything better in most cases than other specialized units from other army books.  It's really just frak ridiculous.

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PostSubject: Re: Please explain the Wave Serpent to me   Please explain the Wave Serpent to me I_icon_minitimeFri Oct 17 2014, 22:35

the whole 'ignoring cover' thing doesnt seem that good until you are hiding behind ruins. You get a 3+ while your opponent gets nothing...its kind of a big deal
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