Choosing Your Primaris Fast Attack
Even more so than other Detachment slots, Primaris Fast Attack choices should be focused on what they do for your force. Go over the the same questions you looked at for your Elites choices, but give the greatest weight to the first one.
How does this unit add capabilities to my force?
Do their abilities compliment my Troops and HQs?
Do their abilities conflict with my existing choices?
Can I find similar capabilities elsewhere for cheaper?
Primaris Fast Attack units need to be purpose focused. While, your choices here are still Primaris, and they are just as tough as the others in your force. However, their units are small and costly. Even a few removed models substantially reduces their effect in your army. So take them when they have a role, not just to fill a slot or are cool. Although, they are that!
Just to point out, I’ll be dealing with keyword Primaris units in this article. Vehicles released along side them, but don’t share the keyword, appear in the last article.
Outriders are the equivalent of the Space Marine Bike Squad. Unlike their Firstborn version, Outriders for units of 3 and only 3 models. They retain great durability with Toughness 5 and 4 Wounds. Their bikers mount twin bolt rifles to give the unit some small arms capability, but carry nothing heavier.
Their real power is in maneuverability and assault. Already fast with a base 14 inch Movement, their Turbo-boost permits them to move up to 20 inches when advancing. Their other ability, Devastating Charge, adds 2 Attacks to each model in this unit.
In play, their use is to seize uncontrolled objectives and assault enemy held ones. Use their Turbo-boost to move to safe positions or to capture unoccupied objectives. On the following turn, they may charge the enemy, delivering 13 attacks in the Fight Phase, or hold an objective until Troops move up to help.
Invader ATV Squad
Not big enough to be a “vehicle”, the Invader ATV takes the place of Attack Bikes for Primaris Marines. With Toughness 5 and 8 Wounds they have twice the staying power, but cannot be hidden inside Bike Squads. Still with up to 3 Invader ATVs in a squad, you’ve got a pool of 24 Wounds. As a Biker, your friendly Apothecary may use Combat Restoratives on them and they benefit from his Narthecium. However, recent changes mean the Apothecary can no longer bring destroyed ATVs back into play. Now, as for use, the Invaders are heavy weapons platforms. They deploy with onslaught gatling cannons or multi-meltas.
Multi-meltas traditionally are used against vehicles, but their profile also makes them excellent character killers. Two shots at 8 Strength and -4 AP make a mockery of all but invulnerable saves. Damage ranges from 1D6 to 1D6 +2 dependent on range.
On the other hand, the onslaught gatling cannon turns the ATVs into piranha schools. Each cannon fires 8 shots at Strength 5. While only having -1 AP and 1 Damage, they are best employed against light infantry and hordes.
So choose your armaments, form up your squad, and go hunting.
Another small size, high firepower Primaris squad, Suppressors support other units by helping your charges succeed, any kills scored are a bonus. This comes from their accelerator autocannons, any hits prevent the targeted unit from firing Overwatch. Feel free to split fire their fire among several different units. With a 48 inch range and Heavy 3, each model should hit once, even if they moved. The units you hit become the ones your units charge in the next phase.
However, don’t discount their direct combat ability. Their 2 Damage will kill regular Marines, and their equivalents, in one shot. You’ll need to focus the fire of all three models to achieve enough hits to penetrate the heavier armors though.
Also, Fly and Death from Above, combined with that long 48 inch range makes for a nice rear area raider or reinforcement on later turns.
Suppressors may only be found at the moment in Start Collecting! Vanguard Space Marines.
Armed with assault bolters or plasma exterminators, Inceptor squads deliver firepower when and where you need it most . They are the slowest of Primaris Fast Attack units with only a 10 inch Movement. Yet, their movement coupled with Fly, or holding back for Death from Above, allow you to place them where and when you need them. An added benefit, since both weapons are assault weapons, Inceptors may advance and still fire steadily and accurately.
Deciding which loadout to bring, as expected, depends on your opposition. Against light infantry and small, poor armor units, the higher rate of fire of the bolters makes up for lower Strength. When facing heavier infantry and some vehicles, I’d prefer plasma exterminators. Their rate of fire is variable with 1D3 attacks each, but the higher strength and AP increases wounds and makes them stick. Also, the Blast ability bounces your short back up to 3 when firing at a unit with 6+ models. The only downside would be extra point cost. Finally, while supercharging plasma is tempting, the chance of losing a model from a small squad is too high. Save it from the last stand heroics.
Entries in this series
To Be Published
Gods of War, Primaris Heavy Support
Motor Pool, Primaris Tanks and Transports