We got several stratagems in Faith joining the two we retained from Vigilus. I am splitting this section into four parts, the “Mediocre”, The Good, and Amazing. Following a brief discussion on relevant vanilla codex Stratagems.
Between all of them we have only two....let us say mediocre. They are “Uphold the Honour of the Emperor” (from Vigilus) and “Shock and Awe”. Uphold is bad because it’s only usable on units with low wound count and characters are often overkilled.
In contrast “Shock” is only bad because the cost of Land Raider Crusaders leave much to be desired. The other ones? Well they are good to bonkers.
(Marshal Laeroth -- So I have to disagree here. I think there is still value in "Uphold" in the right circumstances. Perhaps you want the chance to hold onto an objective or quarter of the board. Maybe you were charged and you want to attack back against your opponent. Lots of situations where a 5+ FNP in combat would be useful. Its just unfortunate that it only affects certain units. As for "Shock and Awe", I am not convinced it will be viable. It requires you to get reasonably close to the enemy to unload the squad from the LRC, plus get in range for its guns. This means your opponent can potentially charge the LRC and surround you, preventing you from disembarking. Even more dangerous is if they can kill the LRC, then you'll likely lose the vast majority of your unit due to not being able to place your models. But if you can pull it off, its a nice perk.)
The Simply Good:
There is only two of our stratagems which belong to this category, “Vicious Riposte”, “Devout Push”, and “Crusader Relics”.
The first one is....well simply put unreliable, but what makes it good is the fact we have several methods of feel no pain available to our boys. Meaning it we have more chances to proc it (NB a rolled 6 on a FNP save does not Proc this stratagem it simply means that instead of dying an model lives to try again).
If we are taking 30 wounds, on 15 man marines squad. You would net 14 saves before all your neophytes dies, meaning 7 pass. Of that 33% or 2 mortals wound Proc. Then for the 16 saves you take on marines. You save 10-11 of them. 25% of that or around 2-3 will proc mortal wounds. You just did two smites worth of Mortal Wounds. That be 5 dead Zerkers, Ork Boyz or otherwise.
The second one is Crusader Relics, is not bad, because you have several good options for relics to gift to sergeants. Which be discussed in greater detail on next section. It’s more of a question of CP expenditure.
The final one, "Devout Push" is either amazing or just mediocre depending on interpretation and/or faq’ing. But simply put as of right now by raw you can get a very different reading than like intended. For our purposes I am assuming worst case scenario. That it makes your pile-in and consolidation move 6”. Which allows for much better tagging, and performing a tri-lock.
(Marshal Laeroth -- I really like Vicious Riposte. It allows us to throw cheap units as speed bumps against enemy units to slow their progress across the board. This is especially useful against units that have a lot of attacks like Orc Boys, Nids swarms, or GSC units. Its in your back pocket and is a threat that your opponent cannot ignore. Crusader Relics is kind of hit or miss, depending on who your opponent is. Its basically another relic in your army, but handily on a sergeant...which hides the relic a bit. Devout Push is actually really good. Even if it is FAQ'd to not allow you to pile into multiple combats, it does allow you to get more of your models into combat. Which is especially nice if you tag more than one enemy unit into combat. Even better if you FLY, so that you can get into position even better.)
Our other stratagems, are nothing short of awesome.
We have all played "Suffer Not the Unclean to Live", +1 attack and reroll wounds on either our company veterans espacially fist or hammer armed ones, or on a Smash character be it EChampion or Marshall never disappoints.
The "Oaths of Honor" is the reroll wounds one we have for scouts, flavor grumbles aside, it’s amazing. Suddenly now we are can actually clear chaff easily with our own screens with a simple 1CP investment. Especially sense scouts likely be dead far before t3 meaning they wouldn’t benefit from our super doctrine.
The incredible notable ones are "Abhor the Witch", which is a 4+ CP rerollable (with CP use) deny the witch can be used after normal deny the witches are tried. Meaning you can use Grimaldus or other denies first.
"The Emperor's Will" is an advance and charge stratagem which allows us to shoot pistols for 1CP.
And then finally Tenacious Assault, 2CP to stop cowardice. While Night Lords got a strictly better one. Simply having this one as an option is awesome for us. Only downside it’s 2CP.
(Marshal Laeroth -- "Suffer" is pretty darn good. It does cost 2 CP, but in combination with our super doctrine, it can turn a 5-man unit into a ridiculously dangerous unit. Especially if you have a Captain nearby. "Oaths" officially makes a 5-man Scout squad more dangerous than an equal sized Reiver or Incusor squad. That's pretty impressive for a 55 point unit. It gets even better as the size of the squad goes up, making a 10-man unit a legitimate first-turn threat to your opponent. "Abhor" is just another tool in your chest to deny psychic powers for a tiny 1 CP fee. 24" range that can be used after any other Deny the Witch attempts, is huge. Combo with our Chapter Tactics and psykers are going to have a difficult time against us.
"Emperor's Will" is also a huge threat to our opponents. This allows us to bring an advance deployed unit dangerously close to a first turn charge without using concealed positions or deep strike. When you can potentially get a Crusader blob squad into close combat on turn one with a little bit of luck? Awesome. Finally, "Tenacious Assault" will be used frequently to prevent key opponent's from falling back from our combats if we were not able to take them down. Very good synergy with small concealed position units that can survive a turn of combat. This is how you dictate the battle and protect yourself from return fire.)
The Vanilla Base:
I won’t go into too much detail here, but essentially:
"Honor of the Chapter", fight twice is awesome for our boys in black. "Only in Death Does Duty End", letting one of our characters fight again after dying, is amazing in one sense a 1CP cheaper Honor.
"Hero of the Chapter", second warlord trait, especially given we are essentially always using Master Swordsman, a second way to open warlord trait is welcome.
Finally "Trans-human Anatomy", which makes us only woundable on 4+. Remember how we stressed one should always be taking tide squads? This is another reason for that.
Now there are other good vanilla stratagems, Hellfire and Gravitic Amplification for example but those are more list dependent. But in summary, Marines have an extensively good stratagems, we add on top of that several goods ones of our own. Vanilla Marine ones tend to be more list building reliant while ours, save two, are not so at all.
In general our solid strategems is where GW had really knocked our rules out of the park. We'll see you in Part Five!