Sunday, September 12, 2010

Tyranid Tactica: The Doom of Malan'Tai

(photo credit to Dakka's Lindsay40k for this amazing model) Old School here with another tactica for the Nids. I am sure "Doom of Malan'tai" and "Tactica" being in the same title made some of you laugh, hell it made me giggle a little too, but then I know there are some people who just don't quite know what this little creep is for, so let's talk about the big-headed kid - the much-maligned Doom of Malan'tai!
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I have a couple rules about the Doom I must insist you follow (Don't feed him after midnight lol):
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Don't Count him toward the plan: When I take this model (and I do it quite often), just build the rest of your list and the ideas you put into it without any tactical regard to the Doom. Don't sit around thinking what he will do - it doesn't matter - he might not eat any souls, he may just eat Double-Toughness shots and Die - He might just change the way the enemy moves - or not - and maybe ... just maybe, he will kill something important or do that and then blow something up - or make the enemy shoot it so much all your other stuff gets to do their job! You never know exactly what's going to happen, so don't plan, just execute when it comes to this guy.
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Always put him in a Spore Pod! Seriously, what use will this model be in most games if he starts 48 inches from the enemy? A Doom without a spore pod will likley get killed and do nothing more than go home and cry himself to sleep on his huge pillow. This really is a no-brainer. In a pod, he becomes a threat to any disembarked, footslogging group of models on the board, regardless what their leadership is (average roll on 3d6 is 10, even ld10 will give up wounds 50% of the time). This often means that an enemy will either disregard the Doom and play for the best, keeping their units near each other to help deal with trying to gun down your MCs (playing into the Doom's hands) - OR - they will spread out and try to minimize the damage the doom can do when he drops (playing into your army's hands). Either way, the Doom will land and the doom will do his job.
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Always Cataclysm unless assault is the better option or running will get him to contest: That is right, even a S4, AP1 large blast is fine, because if it hits a squad, they will fold, he will gain wounds or break even. This also boosts the enemy's willingness to try to double-toughness him with big guns! If you have a ton of wounds, even better, start taking out tanks, T5 stuff, whatever, it's all good. Just keep killing! The bigger the distraction the better! Every ounce of effort the enemy expends on him, the less he spends on your army! The more you kill or distract or disrupt the enemy, the better your investment in the Doom will pay off - the only time, I would run would be to contest an objective if you have to with him if he still lives on turn 5 and you have nothing else around (won me a game once).
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The Bottomline: The Doom is the ultimate distraction unit beacause for 130 points, you will always do SOMETHING with this unit. As stated above, you may kill your points back at least, or distract enough units for a critical turn allowing the big MCs to close with the enemy or disrupt the enemy enough to ruin his game plan, throwing him off balance and giving you the momentum. The point is that this is a unit the enemy has to do something about or it will do something to them!
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Now the downside: This badboy lives in the land of Elite choices, which is the most hotly contested FOC slot in the whole codex. Taking him means not taking another unit of Hive Guard or not taking those Zoans, which can be a hard choice. At 1850, I take him instead of the zoans and I recognize that he may just die to the first missile launcher shot that comes his way (because pimping is sometimes easy - even with a 3+ invul); I accept that risk for all the potential benefits he might lend as stated above.
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So if you are into the gamble, want to make hell for the opponent and maybe even cause some mayhem (I once owned a Daemon Prince, Havoc Squad and 3 Chaos Termies in one turn), then I would give him a try. If you would rather have garaunteed shooting (I can't blame you), less BS called your direction and better AT options, then you may want to pass on this model.
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Now I turn the tactica over to you: What do you think of the doom? Used him before? Been the victim? Have a great Doom Story? Please share, feedback is always welcome and please check out the the link in the photo credit up top, the guy made an awesome scratch build and it desrves more credit than the one I made!

7 comments:

  1. I don't know if the doom is worth it honestly. He did like nothing except take a krak missle to the face. against high units and models with high leader ship and invo saves he is just a big headed kid arriving on the short bus.
    Against low leadership target though he really does tear it up.

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  2. you do realise, being a zoanthrope (read the FAQ update) he benefits from the warpfield save like a zoan of 3+ so it isnt as vulnerable as you make out.
    its infantry, not monstrous so it doesnt stand out like a sore thumb as much, and so can hide behind a wall of smaller bugs for a 4+ cover save if needed.

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  3. I almost never leave the Hive without the Doom. His psychological effect on the opponent alone is HUGE. The knowledge that the Doom might drop on him in one of the following turns already forces my opponent to make decisions, and that is always a good thing because every decision might be a possible mistake. And in my local gaming group this thing killed so much it is not even funny anymore. My personal favourite was one game where he took out 50+ guardsmen, 2 whole weapon teams, a Leman Russ and a Chimera. But 12 Nurgle Marines, 7 Nurgle Terminators and 6 Obliterators are a close second Place.

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  4. Thanks for featuring my model! Doomie is great fun to play with, just the threat of her popping out of a Spod is enough to make my usual prey stay in their transports and refuse to come out and play :D

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  5. It is a really interesting unit I wish Games Workshop would release some Tervigon, Swarmlord, Tyrannofex models, Doom of Malantai models so we don't have the most incomplete model range of any new codex. I mean I have seen some really cool conversions like the one above but I am not that good of a modeler.

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