Friday, October 29, 2010

Statistics: How Many Pink Horrors?

Pink horrors are clearly not close combat exponents. They shoot things. Repeatedly. And fast (assault 3). They want to get in range, shoot things and avoid being charged. It's that simple. Add in a little bit of tank hunter, Changeling mischief, and icon bearing and we're done.
So, if they're going to shoot things, then how many horrors do I need to take care of a (say) squad of 5 marines?

Each horror gets 3 shots at BS=3. Hence 1.5 shots will hit. Fifty per cent of that will wound (S4 against T4). That means 0.75 wounds, on average. And then the space marine gets a 3+ armour saving throw. So, 0.25 unsaved wounds per horror.

Hence I need 4 horrors to statistically take care of a single space marine. Therefore a squad of 5 marines need only fear a full pack of 20 pink horrors of Tzeentch. This seems like a very large number realistically. Especially given the points value of the horrors.

Let's have a quick look at their survivability whilst we're here. How many standard shots (i.e. bolter shots fired by a marine ... or BS=4, S=4 shots) can they take?

They'll get hit on 3+, get wounded on 3+ and save on 4+. Hence they stand a 22 per cent probability of being removed from a standard shot. Therefore 4.5 standard shots are required to remove them on average. This means that space marines shooting at them will kill less horrors than horrors will kill marines in a firefight! This is a somewhat surprising result that is often overlooked by marine players. Equally, it is half of the survivability of plaguebearers. Hence I will often take units of 10 or more horrors for my purposes of icon bearing, backed up with a little shooting ability to make eldar (etc.) think twice, before encouraging them to hop along to claim an objective on turn 4 or so.

Further Discussion.
BUT, there is a different reason that I will take horror packs: the Bolt of Tzeentch. A good set up I've found is simply to take a minimum sized squad and equip one horror with the Bolt of Tzeentch for extra anti-tank ability in the daemons army.

And then there's the Changeling. I've discussed this fellow in the past, so I'll simply provide a link to those earlier thoughts.

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