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"Starter list for Alien Squad Leader" Topic

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Trojan Points Inactive Member24 Jan 2017 9:03 a.m. PST

A series of recent posts on Small Soliders – Fight! Win! got me to dig my Alien Squad Leader book out…

I suck at list building and figuring out what to take by just reading a rulebook… I does gets better later with a couple of games played but I always get "where to start" paralysis!

I'd like to start a couple of armies in the 100/150 pts bracket (ideally 100 pts with 50 pts add-on) that are solid composition (without necessarily being bleeding edge tournament level) with the necessary "must have" and without any "lemons" units.

I'm mostly looking at the 3 "humans" (imperial, colonial and strike force) and the 3 "alien" (imperial, alien caste and strike force) armies.

PS: I'm looking for armies composition tips not for a single shopping point to buy an ASQL army (I'm aware of the colonial, mechanoïd and grey army packs): once I got the lists, I'll cherry pick the exact miniatures I'll buy, I love THAT part!

darebear Inactive Member24 Jan 2017 10:58 a.m. PST

Well, if I may chime in.

All the lists require "must have" choices. This often eats away a large portion of points, making it easy to figure out the rest. I always include at least 2 command stands in less than 200 point games.

Human Imperial – 42 points on must haves
Human Colonial – 45 points on must haves
Strike Force – typically around 60 points of must haves, maybe more.

For me, the first priority is to stock up on heavy/primary weapons. This typically takes the balance of my points. You need to be able to hit armored targets at range, especially when playing on tables larger than 4x4. My choices are therefore restricted to those platforms which have said weapons. I also tend to gravitate to units which have armor saves or some special survivability perk. For Colonial armies what would you rather have, a 10 pt tank with a heavy weapon with a 4+ save, a 10 point heavy weapons infantry squad with no save or a 7 point Floater with a heavy weapon and no save? Certain types of terrain can protect the Floater, but what if there is no such terrain on the board? Similarly the infantry can die even more quickly unless hidden in terrain. So, my choice is clear, the tank: it is survivable, immune to small arms and cost effective. Again, this is just my personal preference.

Human Imperial armies: it makes little sense to stock up on heavy weapons when Main Battle Tanks are available (unless points are an issue). If my force is to be mechanized than two tanks and two transports are just about all I can afford points wise. Nothing else in the list is as hard hitting or survivable than MBT's. I play this list like an 40K Imperial Guard Armored Company.

Colonial: I tend to avoid turrets, droids and light vehicles; taking the minimum number of inferior infantry I need I then stock up on armored fighting vehicles, veteran infantry and pulse cannons. Think 40K Imperial Guard Infantry Company.

Strike Force: this is a hard army to play. Low unit counts make the force unforgiving when casualties mount. However it is a cheap army to buy since the model count is low. There is not a lot of room for choices here. I typically take 3 infantry, 1 assault, 1 heavy weapon squad (all maxed out with kit) and two armored transports. That is it.

For Alien Imperial armies I have a minimum amount of imperial troopers, and prefer to use beasts/cavalry for my primitive units. You need to get them into close combat and those guys have the speed to do it and get a bonus as well. Beasts are better then Fighters and Shooters, well I just don't see the point really. I then fill out my list with Phase Tanks and maybe a heavy droid. This army is all about shooting their superior energy weapons, just like Tau in 40K.

Finally, I have found there are many units that simply do not work for me in 2nd edition. I would like to use them but honestly I have not been able to make them work and find points better spent elsewhere. Most likely they are useful and I simply don't know what I am doing.

Recon Droids, Distant Flyers, Dropships, Light Vehicles, Inferior Infantry (try moving and shooting with these guys), Shooters, Light Transports (I use them to run over people) all fall into this category.

Trojan Points Inactive Member24 Jan 2017 12:40 p.m. PST

Great input!

I was a bit afraid you'd say that… It's always a disappointment to hear that some units for which there are great looking minis options just don't work!

So about the Human Imperial, stocking up on primary weapons:

TOTAL: 100 points
- 4 stormtroopers (mandatory) = 32 pts
- 3 MBT = 48 pts
- 1 Battle Mecha = 20 pts

TOTAL: 150 pts
- 4 stormtroopers (mandatory) = 32 pts
- 3 MBT = 48 pts
- 3 Battle Mechas = 60 pts
- 10 points left for one other unit or some upgrades for the MBT/Mechas…

Sounds a pity if the entire army must be made (if it is to be competitive) of the legal minimum of mandatory units and as much as possible of just two types of über-units.

Are you sure this game is any good? :-S

darebear Inactive Member24 Jan 2017 5:00 p.m. PST

Well I find it fun. Like I said, perhaps I am not as skilled as i should be with some of the units I mentioned. I tend to collect everything in a list in order to give myself options, simply because I do not want to play the same list over and over again and in some cases I play units just because I like the minis. I know 3rd edition will be adding some new features to make some units more attractive. I tend to play more for fluff so my lists are not necessarily min/maxed.

Some armies consist of more "must haves" than others. One could make the argument that a Human Imperial Army could function just as well with heavy weapons squads instead of MBTs, going for sheer volume of fire.

However, you will find that huge armies struggle with making all those command tests. Sure you can group units together but you will risk area effect damage to everyone. There are a lot of nuances to this game, much more than is readily apparent from a brief glance.

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