Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The Alpha Legiondary Journey Part 1: Evaluating Codex: Space Marines

Welcome back to the second article and the continuation of "The Alpha Legiondary Journey". Hopefully you have read and enjoyed Part I where I listed some of the goals and concepts that I'm shooting for with this series and as to why I will not be using Codex: Chaos Space Marines as the core for my Alpha Legion list.

Evaluating Codex: Space Marines
The Space Marines have been out for quite a while now and everyone and their mother are familiar with their pros and cons, their strengths and weaknesses. The tricky part is evaluating said characteristics and figuring out what can be applied to the Alpha Legion doctrine - what works and what does not.
There is a caveat, however: Supposedly the 6th Edition version of Codex: Space Marines will be hitting the shelves by the end of the year, so this article may not be relevant for long. I doubt, however, that GW will tinker with their favorite poster child too much.

Pros: Tons of incredibly flexible and customizable options, Combat Squads mimics the division of small, Alpha Legion cells, Combat Tactics can be a great bait-and-switch mechanic, many options to play with USR abilities such as Infiltrate, Move Through Cover, Scout as well as the option of having your entire list Outflank. Because of Combat Squads and Chapter Tactics, there is a lot of strategy and trickery to consider before and during deployment, really allowing you to analyze the situation and change the way your army is split and deployed.
Cons: Really.. not a whole lot. The Codex is so big that there are plenty of options to consider and use and the real cons do not really apply to the Alpha Legion play style. By itself, Codex: Space Marines totally fits the doctrine of Alpharius' progeny. What is important to figure out is if it should be used as the core for the Alpha Legion list.

I really don't know where to begin with this Evaluation as there are some great Alpha Legion tidbits.

Combat Squads is just great and allows you to play your Alpha Legion list as a collection of small, but elite cells of special operatives by splitting your 10-man squads into two 5-man squads. With some Chapter Tactics this can be pretty interesting and especially useful in non KP missions. Consider the following:
Using Kor'sarro Khan's Chapter Tactics (All units can Outflank) can allow you to have a small squad with a Heavy weapon on an objective and then the other part of the squad is equipped for tank hunting (melta, combi-melta on the sergeant) and Outflanking to screw with your opponent's plans.. and nerves.

Chapter Tactics of note..
  • Without a doubt, the winner here is Kor'sarro Khan's ability to give your entire army (or all Space Marines, at least) the ability to Outflank! Just this little rule is enough to create an Alpha Legion army using the Khan as an HQ and unlocks so many options in addition to the huge list of units available to Space Marine players. I am not sure if taking Bikers is the thing for me - they are great and Khan lists have proven to be competitive in 6th Edition, yet I am not really convinced that they are Alpha Legion material. Giving the option of Deep Striking units such as Terminators or Sternguard Veterans the ability to Outflank is great in certain scenarios and situations where terrain or enemy deployment is making Deep Striking too dangerous or impossible. 
  • Another interesting option to consider is Pedro Kantor whose Chapter Tactics give your army Stubborn and makes the amazing Sternguard Veterans scoring... AND whose Inspiring Presence works just like a Chapter Banner (+1A to all friendly units within 12''). Kantor is amazing in lists which utilize Drop Pod Assault as their main strategy. Drop Pods, however, are not to my liking - they make sense, but it is not how I envision the Alpha Legion. Best part about Pedro Kantor, however, is The Orbital Bombardment. Just because. 
  • Changes 6th Edition Assaults on Turn 1 or the Turn You Infiltrate/Outflank -  Unfortunately, some pretty cool units which were very popular in 5th Ed. are now... kind of questionable at best. Keyvaan Shrike's ability to launch crazy assaults with Fleeting Terminators, for example used to be awesome. Both this ability and the Fleet USR took a hit, though.
Special Mention:
+Thunderfire Cannon and Techmarine: Man, where do I even begin? As a Space Wolves player, the Surface Detonation (S6, AP5, Heavy 4, Blast); Airburst (S5, AP6, Heavy 4, Blast, Ignores Cover) and Subterranean Blast (S4, AP-, Heavy 4, Blast, Tremor) gets you a unit which can deal will all sorts of infantry. Tremor is just awesome against assaulty units as well. IN ADDITION, the Techmarine can repair vehicles and Bolster Defenses is just.. awesome - the ability to increase the cover save of a Ruined building in your deployment zone is fantastic and has great synergy with any Heavy Support units you may have, especially those with Stealth.
Thunderfire Cannon is.. like.. the one thing I'd totally steal and add to my SW list. With Allies, I guess I can now, huh? The Thunderfire Cannon's supporting element is, for me, the epitome of all of the tactical shenanigans of Codex: Space Marines. Three modes of fire -
    Basically an excuse to use
    the Warpsmith model.
  • This would definitely be a MUST for me if I were to play Codex: Space Marines, although I would have to go with the modeling of the Thunderfire Cannon differently. Not that I don't like it.. I was thinking of basically creating a Heavy Weapons platform with 3 Space Marines on it, each with a different kind of heavy weapon, all bunkered down and hiding behind some rubble.  

Original is "Torias Telion" by tutzdes
+Torias Telion with Scouts and Aegis Defense Line - Sergeant Telion is yet another character who does not need much explanation as he has been proven to get shit done and even more so in 6th Edition.Before, he used to be a 50 pt. model people took for his rules and because his Stealth USR saved them ~30 points on Camo Cloaks. Now, with the FAQ on how Camo Cloaks work (they give +1 to cover save, rather than Stealth), your scouts led by Sergeant Telion will enjoy a static +2 cover save.. and you don't even need the Boltered Defenses from a Techmarine! So a nice, bigass unit of Scouts with a Missile Launcher, Camo Cloaks, etc. and enjoy.
Hide behind an Aegis Defense Line with an Icarus Lascannon and enjoy your S9, AP1, Skyfire shots.. at BS6 and with Precision Shots from Telion.
Or play it safe with the Quad Gun. 

+Scout Bike Squad with.... Cluster Mines! - I'd field this (perhaps) barebones unit of 3 Bikers just so I can scare the shit out of my opponent when he triggers my trap ca-- I mean, my cluster mines. 2d6 S4 AP- hits is actually pretty decent if you think about it and with the current game mechanics, if you roll well you can glance the shit out of most vehicles. Honestly, I just want to see someone move flat out into cluster mines and get wrecked. Besides, Gretchin need to do their job. Actually, I'm not even sure if It's a Grot's Life works against Cluster Mines... Laying the field with traps is very Alpha Legion-y, so not taking the one option allowing you to do so would be a letdown.

For the purposes of "The Alpha Legiondary Journey" I hereby declare Codex: Space Marines fit for my preferred Alpha Legion list. But will it be the one Codex I choose to go with? We'll see..

Next time I'll go over Codex: Space Wolves..

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Dystopian Wars and My Dream of Crushing Everything Ottoman...

A little change of scenery for this post only, folks.
As some of you probably know, Spartan Games just announced the release of their Ottoman Empire Naval Battle Group.. thing for their Dystopian Wars game. 

The models look cool and what not. I don't really play the game and only know of one other person who partakes (@ Brian's A Gentleman's Ones) , but as a proud Bulgarian firstborn I really want to buy the entire range of Ottoman Empire ships, paint them beautifully, and set them afloat in my bathtub just so that I can pretend to be a Bulgarian Godzilla/Kraken monstrosity and crush, kill and destroy every single Ottoman ship.

A man can dream. A maaan can dream.

Friday, May 3, 2013

The Alpha Legiondary Journey Part 1: Goal, Concept and Evaluating Codex: CSM

Welcome to "The Alpha Legiondary Journey" series, which is going to be my way of communicating, sharing and brainstorming with you - the blogosphere and wargaming community - as I slowly create a 2,000 points Alpha Legion-themed list to be used with the Warhammer 40,000 6th Edition ruleset. Originally I was thinking of calling this segment "Alpha Legioning it Up", but I'm pretty sure the fact that English is not my native tongue isn't the only reason why this title is unpronounceable. Yeesh.
My name is Skarvald the Troll-faced and I will be your host. Haha.

Let's start with the foundation of what "The Alpha Legiondary Journey" is trying to accomplish:

The goal of "The Alpha Legiondary Journey" is supposed to create an Alpha Legion list that is fun to play
with and against, stay true to the design of the Legion and remains fluffy. I will be using 6th Edition rules to accomplish this and will aim to create a 2,000 point list from the ground.
Q: Why 2,000 points?
A: A 2,000 points list is a nice, large army that can fit a lot of fun components in it. There is plenty of space to include a plethora of guys, toys and other things without having to sacrifice a lot of interesting options for efficiency's sake. Reducing the list down to 1850 or even 1500 points for various events and tournaments will be possible, but we are not trying to limit ourselves here. 2000 points will give us the space AND freedom to be creative.

Q: Will you be using Allies, Modified Force Organization Charts and/or Forge World rules and models?
A: I will split this one into three..
Allies - YES: Oh, God. Definitely. I simply cannot a way around it besides using the Codex: Chaos Space Marines and spamming Cultist. I will not be doing that, actually. I'm also not going to be using the Chaos Space Marines codex at all, but I will justify this in a few.
Double FOC - NO: While at 2,000 points I am technically "allowed" to do so, Double FOC remains a questionable practice and something that I don't really like. I might consider it and do some "fun" lists in the future once I have some of the elements, but "Double FOC" is not something that I'll be going for.
Forge World - YES:  Ah, the big one. YES. I am for Forge World? Why? Because Forge World models are gorgeous, have some pretty interesting rules and because people should embrace it. Not to mention that with the price-gouging of GW's prices, Forge World models seem more and more like the better option anyways. I will not be using a LOT from Forge World, but I expect this to change once the Alpha Legion gets its Horus Heresy treatment in a couple years. Currently I'm thinking of two models tops.

Copyright: Anvil Industries
The Alpha Legion epitomizes trickery, infiltration, outmaneuvering and outsmarting and foot-slogging. While they are just as good (if not better) at prolonged, direct combat, the Alpha Legion prefers to destroy from within, to ambush and slowly chip away at the enemy and to manipulate using subterfuge and propaganda. Information is crucial and the spy networks organized by them are deep and complex. Basically, if each Legion was represented by a god from the Norse Mythology, the Alpha Legion would be Loki himself.

Anvil Industry. It's like Alpharius, Omegon and Sam Fisher had tons of lovechildren.
"Counts-As"/Interchangeable - If there is a Marine-based army whose style can be represented by more than one Codex, then it has to be the Alpha Legion. One of my main goals with this current Alpha Legion list and army is to create a foundation of units which can be used with more than one Codex. Currently I am looking at Codex: Space Marines; Codex: Chaos Space Marines and Codex: Space Wolves. The Alpha Legion have always been the most tactical fallen Marines. Many codices have a lot of fun and interesting ways of representing the Hydra's doctrine - from creating a Kor'sarro Khan list with tons of Outflanking due to his Combat Tactics, Combat Squad-ing Tactical Marines/Scouts and dropping elite Sternguard Veterans from the sky with Codex: Space Marines to all the infiltrating and Behind Enemy Lines fighting style of the Space Wolves..
In the next couple of posts I'll quickly evaluate a couple of the Codices which I think best fit the Alpha Legion style, choose the one I like the most and will ally Imperial Guard with it, because I consider I.G to be a necessary part of the Alpha Legion.

Chances are you already know what the Alpha Legion is all about. I actually jotted down a lot of my ideas like a year or so ago before 6th Edition's Codex: CSM even came out. A lot of my speculations and wish-listing was for nothing, it seems. Nonetheless, the Alpha Legion is about combining Power Armor and cheap, but elite infantry that Infiltrates, Scouts and catches the enemy completely unawares and with his pants down.

Evaluating Codex: Chaos Space Marines
Codex: Chaos Space Marines
It's hard for me to choose which PA Codex would best represent the Alpha Legion play-style, strategy and mentality. Immediately, Codex: Chaos Space Marines stands out, though primarily because the Alpha Legion IS a Chaos Space Marine force to begin with. I tried and tried to force myself to like the Chaos Space Marine Codex. I really did. There are a lot of cool components about it - I like the ability to spam dudes in Power Armor and Cultists. And that's about it, really. My knowledge of 6th Edition is pretty limited, but every CSM unit has been dissected and over-analyzed by the community already - there are many losers and a few winners. Sadly, the winners are not those likely to wear the Hydra tattoo. 

Pros: Cheap, customizable basic Chaos Space Marines, cheap and efficient Chaos Space Marine Bikers, Cultists.
Cons: The part of Codex: CSM that got the most "love" in 6th Ed. is not really Alpha Legion material: Icons, Marks and any units with Marks, including Psychic Powers, any Daemonic units/upgrades and Daemonic Vehicles (Defilers, Forge Fiends, Maulers, Hell Drakes) do not make a whole lot of sense in an Alpha Legion list. While the Alpha Legion is known to deal and use daemonic forces and tools, the theme that I want to pursue is that of a foot-slogging, inflitrating elite force which surrounds and dismantles the enemy piece by piece.
Sadly, it seems like there are a couple of really niche and "mandatory" units in the Codex: CSM which make the ruleset shine.. *cough*Hell Drakes*cough*, while other units get to sit on the bleachers and carve the Chaos Undivided symbols on all surfaces available. 

Eternal Hunt's very own, converted Chaos Cultists!
Special Mention:
+ Warp Talons - At one point I was semi-seriously considering a minimal squad of Warp Talons to just drop in and Blind a unit, but with Blind being an Initiative check (too random and unpredictable) and Warp Talons counting as demons I just couldn't justify it. Also, talk about a one-trick pony!
+ The Warpsmith was also a cool idea, which I quickly realized was not going to work for me due to the lack of vehicles I plan to have on the battlefield. Being able to give vehicles Gets Hot!, though... Sigh. Such a shame - the model is gorgeous. 
+ Chaos Cultists, while cool lack any sort of decent customization. I'm glad that Chaos Space Marines finally got them, but with the addition to the Allies option there really is no reason to take them - Imperial Guard and Tau are better choices.
+ Dark Apostle also gets a special mention as a way to make Cultist cool and give them that extra flavor. Unfortunately there seems to be a pattern here - Games Workshop seems to be making a lot of exceptionally jaw-dropping models which happen to have really, really sub-par rules.

As a matter of fact, if Codex: Chaos Space Marines was not so limiting I could easily see myself using some of the "Special Mention" units. Unfortunately, I cannot justify it.

 The main issue with Codex: CSM is the lack of the very important USR's for the Alpha Legion: Scout and Infiltrate. Chosen used to have access to it back in 5th Edition, but 6th Edition stripped them of that privilege and now the only two (well.. 3) ways to give your units some Infiltrate shenanigans and that is through the Master of Deception Warlord Trait which is conveniently given to two special HQ Characters:
- Huron Blackheart, who is a well-rounded character with some minor psychic abilities, decent ranged attacks and decent close combat capabilities, but nothing to write home about. Okay, but Master of Deception is a fickle thing, allowing d3 units to get the Infiltrate USR.
- Ahriman himself, a powerful psycher dedicated to Tzeench - Not Okay, because Ahriman is allied with Tzeentch, also see Master of Deception
- You could also run a Warlord and hope to roll Master of Deception.....

In the end, all the cool things in Codex: Chaos Space Marines end up verboten and trying to stretch the few elements that make sense for an Alpha Legion feels more like an annoying, unnecessary obstacle rather than a list-building challenge to me. Oh, and there's also the thing about Allies..
I, still, to this day don't get why Imperial Guard are considered Allies of Convenience with Chaos Space Marines! There are plenty of common reasons for both armies to fight together, following the Chaos Gods being the most obvious one, for example. You know, basically the mirror to why the I.G fight for the Imperium - because they believe in the God Emperor of Mankind and hate Chaos.
It's possible to make it work. It's not hard, but once again.. - an annoying little detail.

TL;DR: Codex: Chaos Space Marines is a huge NO-NO for me all things considered. I wouldn't mind playing an all-Nurgle Force one day, but for the purposes of "The Alpha Legiondary Journey"

Next: Evaluating Codex: Space Marines

I'm back! Read this!

Blah, blah, blah, you've read this here already and you've encountered similar posts on other blogs and websites scattered across this neat, little thing we call the Internet, haven't you? Well, no worries. I'm keeping this short.

Friday, August 3, 2012

The Slaaneshi Whore Lord Strikes Again!

I'm happy to announce that the infamous Slaaneshi Whore Lord (for what else could he be with such a graphic nom de plume?) has decided to leave his permanent mark in the blogosphere and in miniature war-gaming history by starting his very own blog, thus giving birth to...

Now, you might say "Whatever, Skarvald. Yet another 40k-themed blog? Why should I even care?!?"
Well, sure. It's a blog, or a bleeerg like I like to call it, but the Slaaneshi Whore Lord has a few things to say about the hobby and he certainly managed to amaze ME with the few articles he wrote for Wolves for the Wolf God. I'll be honest here and say that he actually had a whole score of things to say and share here, but I was the one who dropped the ball in a period of extreme busy-ness, overwhelmed by my very own hobby glory. 

Here's the thing, though: 6th Edition is already upon us and the new Codex: Chaos Space Marine is juuuuust 'round tha corner. A lot of people are waiting for it to hit the stores, anxious to see what a 6th edition codex will look like, excited to start their very own Chaos warband or two or perhaps continue to bask in the GLORY of their long forgotten, dusty Chaos Space Marine minis.

Gone will be the days of "Counts As" Space Wolves armies, using Chaos miniatures.
Soon, Chaos will beckon.
And the Slaaneshi Whore Lord will be its Herald.  

So make sure to visit his fledgling-of-a-blog now before Chaos claims your body and soul.
 Join him now or suffer the consequences later.
You have been warned.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Did the Land Raider Achilles foreshadow the new Hull Points system?

This has been bothering me ever since 6th edition came out. No, actually.. even before that - when the first "concrete" rumors and leaks flooded the blogosphere.

Before I added the side sponsons.. which were a PAIN to build.
So.. was the Land Raider Achilles an early sign for the Hull Points system - perhaps one of the biggest changes brought to us by 6th Edition? I think so.
But let me clarify the actual fact of the matter here:

Here are the early "Experimental Rules" of the Land Raider Achilles, as posted on the Forge World website as soon as the Land Raider Achilles was announced. Notice, for example, the original point cost of 300 points (compared to the actual, current point cost of 325 points.)

"... reduces the effects of all rolls on the damage chart made against it, by -1"
Before: Back then everyone was super excited, because it meant that a regular, non AP1 Glancing Hit couldn't even immobilize a Land Raider Achilles without actually destroying all of its weapons first, since a roll on the damage chart would have been at -3. Penetrating hits were only at -1, which meant that an actual, natural roll of a 6+ was needed to Wreck it. Add to that the immunity to the Lance and Melta special rules and the Land Raider Achilles became pretty resilient. This rustled the jimmies of a bunch of people who immediately yelled "OP! OP!", especially when it was announced that the Land Raider Achilles had the "Warhammer 40,000" stamp on it.

"reduces the effects of all rolls on the Damage chart caused by Penetrating hits by -1."
After: Shortly after the Experimental Rules were posted, there was an update (I think). I mean, I got the book pretty soon, so I also noticed it there. At first, the most obvious difference was the slightly gouged price of 325 points, but after a careful examination on my part I saw the changed wording of the Ferromantic Invulnerability special rule. It struck me as odd. Why would this amazing, super-special hull armor only work when it has been actually penetrated. Why didn't it affect Glancing hits or just ALL rolls on the Damage chart? Back then I saw it as a weird way to nerf the Land Raider Achilles by at least giving some armies the chance to deal with it somehow by Glancing it a bunch of times.

Using 6th Edition, though, it all makes sense. Glancing Hits no longer roll on the damage chart, they simply destroy one Hull Point from the vehicle. It is only Penetrating Hits that get to roll on the chart.
So it is possible that those responsible for the editing/rules of Imperial Armour Apocalype: Second Edition got a whiff of the new vehicle rules... pretty much a year before the actual release? We are constantly being told that Games Workshop and its sister company, Forge World, are pretty independent and separate and that the guys from FW have no idea about what's going on over at GW. It may be true.. but I still think it's weird and quite hard to believe, so I wouldn't be surprised if the book was written, or at least edited with 6th Edition in mind. Even if it was a year ago, I bet that coming up with a new Vehicle damage chart and the Hull Point system was one of the first things that was added to the book. It is just such an important, fundamental part of the game - there's no way that it was not a priority.

But then again knowing GW I wouldn't be surprised...

So whaddaya guys think? A possibility... or a coincidence?

Alpha Legion and 6th Edition

Probably just a month before the release of the new Codex: Chaos Space Marines, I've decided to sit down, reflect on some of the rumors and jot down a few ideas in order to inspire myself (and perhaps even you!) with the exciting, yet challenging adventure that is starting an army from the ground! 
We all know that Codex: Chaos Space Marines is already finished and it's just a matter of time until it is released. The rumor mill is already spinnin' with delicious tidbits and so far things are lookin' pretty promising for the arch-enemies of the Loyalists.

And while I can all but speculate about the things in the Chaos Space Marine codex I can at least jot down some of the more promising and thematic units from Codex: Imperial Guard, which will be playing the role of Special Operatives and various agents, indoctrinated and placed by the Alpha Legion..

The Alpha Legion epitomizes trickery, infiltration, outmaneuvering and outsmarting. While they are just as good (if not better) at prolonged, direct combat, the Alpha Legion prefers to destroy from within, to ambush and slowly chip away at the enemy and to manipulate using subterfuge and propaganda. Information is crucial and the spy networks organized by them are deep and complex. Basically, if each Legion was represented by a god from the Norse Mythology, the Alpha Legion would be Loki himself.

CODEX: Chaos Space Marines

What's going to be in the new (rumored to be hard-cover) codex, what's going to stay the same and what new toys we'll be getting? Your guess is as good as mine, although there are already a bunch of juicy rumors dripping like melted cheese on a medium-rare steak. Cultists, new marks, new Land Raiders, the Dragon, Daemon Engines, new tables, new rules... oh my! 

Staying Undivided
I think this is the most important part of the list-building process. The Alpha Legion is a legion undivided. They do worship Chaos, but they are not dedicated to a single god and I would even say that they don't bother with summoning daemons and other vile creatures of the Warp, because they are unpredictable and unreliable when it comes to precision strikes and years of perfectly-executed tactics. As such I will be doing my best to stick to the following limitations: 
- Only Undivided models
- Very limited Daemonic presence

There are obviously a few things to think about when it comes to the composition of this list. It needs to be a very well-rounded list, because it is how the Alpha Legion works. This means plenty of shooting, enough assault, infiltration and of course - the presence of psykers and psychic protection. The strength of such a list would come from its multiple layers of hybridization. The opponent will have to pick from going after vehicles or infantry, and then this decision will be split between going after the Chaos Space Marine core of the list or the more vulnerable (but potent!) I.G stuff. 
I will do my best to have as much 3+ bodies on the table as I have Guardsmen. I can actually see the Alpha Legion using Razorbacks if they have access to it and even some Rhino Rushing. We shall see.
- Keep it balanced!

And now.. for the I.G part:


Company Command squad: The Company Command Squad is definitely a solid choice. It is well-rounded and offers a LOT of support to the main Alpha Legion. How you equip the squad and what juicy upgrades you grant them is actually not that important. Keep 'em cheap, for all you need are..
+Astropath's Telepathic Relay You add +1 to your Reserve rolls and the ability to re-roll outflank sides is also amazing, because you'll be doing a lot of that. A 2+ rather than 3+ for your units to arrive on Turn 2 is nice, although not as important, but it means that all of your stuff will arrive automatically on Turn 3.
+Officer of the Fleet's Intercept Reserves, makes it harder for your opponent's units to come from reserve, needing a 4+ on Turn 2, and a 3+ on Turn 3, just like the good old days of 5th Edition. Unfortunately things arrive automatically on turn 4, despite any negative modifiers. I think....? The ability to re-roll outflank sides is also amazing, because you'll be doing a lot of that.

The Astropath and OotF are important, especially with how good flyers are in 6th Ed. Remember that all Flyers HAVE to come from reserve, so any chance of delaying them is worth its points. There are also other ways to screw with your opponent's reinforcements by purchasing a:
- Land Raider Proteus (experimental rules here), whose Explorator Augury Web adds another -1 to the opponent's reserve rolls (so Turn 2 = 5+/Turn 3 = 4+) AND you can choose to re-roll your Reserve rolls, even if they are successful, AND it has Scout AND it's an Elites choice for Codex: Chaos Space Marines. Sure, it doesn't pack the punch of some other Land Raiders, it is not an assault vehicle and can carry only 8 dudes.. but it can get Ceramite Armour (immune to Melta special rule)

There's also a rumor that in the new Codex, Undivided Chaos Lords get Inspiring Presence (Inspiring Presence - friendly units within 12" can use the warlords LD) command trait, and improved Reserve manipulation (from Faeit 212). What "improved Reserve maniupation" means is a mystery, but it could easily be another +1/-1 to your/opponent's reserve rolls and possibly the ability to re-roll your own Reserves. Depending on what THAT is, one of the Regimental Advisers might be obsolete, freeing you 30 points. Such a warlord would be a MUST for an Alpha Legion-themed army.

Keep in mind, though, that I'm not 100% sure that the +1/-1 modifiers stack. The only precedent is taken from the I.G FAQ:
Q. If you take two Astropaths or two Oflicers of the Fleet, do their +1/-1 to reserve rolls stack? (p31). A. No.

I still think that with the current way I have it, the modifiers would stack, since they come from different abilities with different names, from different units. Not stacking would be lamesauce. 

+Ursarkar Creed's Tactical Genius is also pretty obvious, though including him in your army will tip the scales towards the I.G detachment and you need 2,000 pt., if you want him and the Regimental Advisers from the Company Command squad. He's a great leader, but you also would need a bunch of I.G squads to benefit from his order shenanigans. Keep in mind that Tactical Genius allows you to give the Scout USR to an infantry or vehicle unit in your army. So you can even give Scouts to a big-ass unit of Chaos Space Marines.. or whatever tickles your fancy. Heh.
Do not bother with Krell. He's not worth it in this list. 

+Last but not least is the Primaris Psyker. The Primaris Psyker is awesome, because his ability to grab Telepathy and swap both of his meh powers, since Lightning Arc sucks and Nightshroud is situational and too random. Using the Primaris Psyker pretty much assumes that he's attached to a Psyker Battle Squad. You take the Primaris Power (Psychic Shreak - 12'' witchfire. Roll 3d6, subtract target's Ld and you deal that many wounds, no armor or cover allowed) and roll for a random power.. because they are ALL good and WILL benefit you greatly. You really want Terrify, though.. which combos greatly with the Psyker Battle Squad's Weaken Resolve. No unit is safe from your psychic shenanigans then. 

While this unit might be incredibly cheesy (now even more than ever..) it actually makes sense in the Alpha Legion army. The Alpha Legion is famous for using psykers for intelligence, spying and all sorts of vile things.


+Guardsman Marbo: A MUST-HAVE!!!!! Seriously. Marbo epitomizes the whole infiltration, sleeper cell agent-doctrine. He's the sneakiest, the trickiest of them all and has all the powers cherished by the Alpha Legion. He's Fearless, Stealth, Move Through Cover, Hit and Run, has Fleet and basically can Deep Strike wherever he wants to, without scattering. What makes him even better, though is his friggin Demolition Charge, which.. by the way have gotten waaay better! Assault 1, One Shot, 6'' range S8, AP2, LARGE BLAST, on a model with BS5. That's pretty amazing. Use Marbo as a one-trick pony. Get him in cover and within an inch of a delicious target (Preferably Paladins - ignores their armor, FnP and causes Instant Death) and drop the template. Hope for the best. On average, 2/3's of the time it will scatter 2''. So hopefully plan for that.  IF Marbo survives the next turn.. well.. consider yourself lucky and just do what Alpha Legion does best.. wreak havoc. 

+Psyker Battle Squad: Basically what I wrote for the Primaris Psyker. They work well-enough alone, but you really want that Marbo, so I would recommend using them in 2,000 pt. games, accompanied by the PP dude.  

+Storm Trooper Squad: They are seriously fluffy and thematic... but I'll probably never end up using them, simply because Marbo and the Psyker Battle Squad are better.. 


This is where things become hard. I am not sure how many Troops I want, what weapons to give them, etc. etc. Though I imagine a Platoon Command Squad lead by.. 
+Al'Rahem: First things, first: Al'Rahem allows you to have a bunch of squads belonging to his Platoon to outflank. They MUST Outflank, which means that they don't count towards your Reserve limitations. That's nice. You can easily get carried away and invest a lot of points in Al'Rahem's platoon, but with 6th Ed and all of your Reserves shenanigans you'll be able to have a much more reliable outflanking unit, potentially arriving automatically on Turn 2 and re-rolling Outflanking sides! Al'Rahem's Like the Wind! order is pretty cool, actually - lets you shoot and then run. Nice for Rapid Firing some lasguns at a unit and then retreating, making assaults less possible. Also..  his weapon is nasty. Power weapon that causes Instant Death? Delicious. Yeah, he's a wimp in Close Combat, which is why you make sure to stick a Commissar with Al'Rahem to accept challenges. Then try to Precision Strike important models and take them out of commission. Forever. 

As I said, I have no idea how I want to run my Platoon Command Squad. Do I want smaller, elite units or a bigger blob? It all depends on what the Cultists bring to the table, I guess. Though I'm really tempted to get a Specialist Squad and give them Demolition Charges.. because.. bombs are cool. 

I dunno. Maybe some Flamers? 

What about Weapon Platforms... ?

+Veteran Squads - The weapon specialist.. Both the Forward Sentries (with Snipers and either Heavy Bolter/Autocannon platform) and Demoltions doctrines are cool.. and so is..
+Gunnery Sergeant Harker

While this list pretty much concludes the units that I want to include as my Allies detachment, there's also one more unit that I really, really want to have: 


+A Squadron of 3 Hydras! : Come on. Why the hell not? Not only is the Hydra the emblem of the Alpha Legion, but Hydras are simply amazing, you guys! With glances no longer messing up with the shooting capability of the vehicle, Hydras are crazy sweet. AND they have Skyfire and ignore Jink cover saves. So that's 12 twin-linked S7, AP4 Hydra autocannon shots and then 9 S5 AP4 heavy bolter shots. Great againt flyers which they always hit on a 4+, ignoring Jink saves; great against light vehicles and other squadrons which they will glance to death; enough shots to make infantry cry.
Some of my friends actually complained when I shared this idea with them, becoming all hurrr-durr-like by saying "This doesn't make sense, the Alpha Legion is all about sneaking and stuff and how would you have gotten Hydras? They are super advanced and stuff!!!?
Nonsense, I say. They are just jealous because it's fluffy, funny and actually makes sense. The Alpha Legion infiltrates other Adeptus Astartes, trifles with Daemons.. I'm sure they can get their hands on a few Hydras. Some people have no imagination these days..