Friday, March 11, 2011

Baal Predators

The Baal Predator is a unique unit to the Blood Angels, and one of the first unique units we received, in the 3rd Edition Codex. While other Predators target armor or are generalists, the Baal Predator specializes in wiping out infantry. It generally has two load-outs, one that wipes out light to medium infantry and one that takes out power armor.

The first, classical type of Baal Predator produces as many shots as possible. It has a turret-mounted assault cannons and sponson-mounted heavy bolters. This design annihilates any squad with a 4+ armor save, as well as producing enough high strength shots to threaten heavy infantry. This tank sacrifices some mobility to maintain firepower, as it can only move 6” while shooting all of its weapons. This pattern of Baal Predator is the most flexible, being able to threaten any infantry as well as light vehicles. It also has decent range and can stay out of melta range of most enemies.

The other pattern has a turret-mounted flamestorm cannon and no sponsons. This means that the tanks can move at full speed to reach its effective range and then maintain 12” movement without any loss of firepower. This pattern tank is perfect for taking on power armored enemies, especially backfield squads that rely on long-ranged firepower. Use this tank to take out enemy firepower squads or squads in cover. However, be careful around squads with meltaguns and power fists. Should any survive the flamestorm’s attack, they’ll be a serious threat to the Predator. Also, always move a flamestorm Baal 12” in order to protect it from enemy assault.

The Baal also has the option to Scout, which can be incredibly useful, particularly for the flamestorm pattern. As a fast vehicle, the Baal can reach its preferred range during the first turn. As an alternative, the Baal can outflank. This option is preferred if you need to take out backfield squads without exposing the Baal to their firepower first. It’s also a great option if you’re taking the Baal in a primarily jump pack army, as it allows the Baal to stay in reserve until the jump packers have engaged and to come onto the table within its effective range.

The Baal Predator is a flexible, mobile, and dangerous tank that can provide Blood Angels with large amounts of anti-infantry firepower, which we often lack. In addition, the Baal fits in both mechanized and jump pack heavy lists. Finally, the Baal is about as fluffy as choice as possible. The Baal Predator is a good choice for almost any Blood Angels army.

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