Thursday, March 17, 2011

Scout Bike Squads

Scout Bikers are an extremely niche unit. They’re just as fast as any other bikers, and they have unparalleled deployment options with both Infiltrate and a 24” Scout move. However, they’re very expensive for an upgraded Scout, complete with low weapon and ballistic skill and a 4+ save. This renders them pretty easy to kill.

In general, Scout Bikes are useful only if you need to get a unit into a very specific position early in the game. With their speed and deployment rules, there is very little that your opponent can do to prevent them getting somewhere. This can be great in a few circumstances. If you need to bring down deep strikers with precision, the Scout Bikers can take Locator Beacons to ensure your squads land correctly. This is best used with non-jump packers, such as Terminators or Land Raiders, since our jump packers land accurately anyway.

Scout Bikers can also be used for first turn assaults on enemy units. This only really works if you get the first turn, otherwise your Scout Bikers will be shot off the board. However, this can be useful for tying up firepower units or hitting stationary vehicles with the sergeant’s power fist.

There’s not much more to say about Scout Bikers. Their cluster mines can be useful if there is a terrain piece that you know your opponent will want to occupy, but they don’t do enough damage to be a real deterrent. Astartes grenade launchers are really cool, but are far too expensive to put on such a vulnerable model with low ballistic skill. Our Codex doesn’t have many weak units, but Scout Bikers are one of the few. They offer some very specific uses and can fit into armies built around certain strategies. However, they’re generally too expensive, vulnerable, and inflexible to be included in most armies.

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