Tuesday, 1 November 2011

The Problem with Plasma and Power Weapons Part 2

Today's post is brought to you by the letter "P"

Part 1 here

Just a quick addendum really, based on comments on the original article and some things I was thinking about while writing this.

The prevalence of cover

So, S7 AP2 is brilliant but it's so easy in the current edition to get that 4+ cover save for your infantry that, it's actually not that good. Especially when you compare it to Melta. Most of the time you're firing Melta at vehicles where, smoke launchers apart, it's a lot harder to get cover (although as Andy says, what is the difference between 49% and 50%?)

Boys before toys

In general, Power Weapons are 15 points in the pace Wolf Codex. Grey Hunters are exactly the same price. Personally, I'd rather have the extra GH - it's one more guy your opponent has to kill to wipe the squad out, it's another guy adding to your firepower.

It may surprise you to hear this, but I actually like Plasma Guns and Power Weapons, I just can't justify taking them :o(


  1. It's like anything, it's about striking a balance. A few plasma guns and a few power weapons will serve you well. Making a Marine make a 4+ cover save is better than a 3+ armor save. A power weapon may get wound allocated to just drop one model but at least it's a dead model. It's not worth loading up on everywhere but these things still have their use.

  2. Problem with power weapons...

    Against things worse than space marines... why bother?

    Against space marines...4+ to hit, 4+ to wound... not that great. 1 wound is ABOVE avg.

    Against anything better than space marines (i.e. real combat units) - they either have a devent invulnerable save or wipe you out before you strike.

    Basic marines aren't good in combat. No point in trying to polish a turd.

  3. Power Weapons can be well worth it in armies that can take advantage of their benefits (i.e. striking at initiative)- Blood Angels and Dark Eldar are both good at this, as are Grey Knights.

    Plasma lost a lot of steam in 5E due to the prevalence of cover, but it still serves its purpose at times. Try dropping some FNP Terminators (or even just regular Terminators) without any AP2 and you'll quickly realize its uses. S7 is also functional, if not great, against light vehicles.

  4. I hate the phrase "meta game" but there are so many vehicles about these days that Meltaguns are almost a "must have" when it comes to special weapons which leaves the Plasma Gun a bit left out.

    As BroLo says Power Weapons are only really useful against MEQ and then you're only doing 3/4 of a wound on the charge on average which is a bit underwhelming. 

  5. Couldn't agree more.

    This is one of the reasons I'm trying out small, non-upgraded squads so that they don't accidentally get locked in combat!

  6. Good point about initiative. I think that Power Weapons are so good with Grey Knights just because everyone has one.

    I agree that Feel No Pain is annoying but as I've said to Thor, at the minute, Melta is just more viable than Plasma. I wonder if it would make any difference if they switched the prices; Plasma 5 points, Melta 10 points?


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