Rawdogger Ascendant or My Battle Company Journey

Hello all!

Rawdogger here to talk about coming to the realization that playing competitive 40k on hard-mode is starting to get really old, really fast.  Going to tournament after tournament and consistently losing game after game has finally lost its luster and much like Detective Murtaugh I’m getting to old for that shit.  For the longest time I’ve had a strange mindset when it came to making lists for 40k.  I would try my best to make terrible lists from terrible codices work in order to prove to people that you didn’t have to run a power list to be successful in the competitive environment.  Well, the only thing I proved time after time is that the lists I was writing were indeed terrible.  To be able to compete at a competitive level with Warhammer 40k in its current form, especially the ITC format, there are some things that you absolutely HAVE to have in your list.

Mobility – The king of 40k 7th edition is fast moving units that can reach out and grab objectives turn after turn.  If those units happen to be objective secured that is even better.  One of my biggest issues in past list building has been my preference for non-mobile shooty units that would sit back the entire game.

Target Saturation – You want to overwhelm your opponent’s ability to completely eliminate your army.

Grav Weaponry – Even more crucial with the Tau codex being released in a couple weeks.  Grav is the undisputed terror of the battlefield.

Drop Melta – Melta has been overshadowed by Grav in recent times but if you go against 5 Knights you damn well better be able to produce some major melta up they ass or have an un-killable deathstar that can walk up and punch them to death.

When looking at all four of the requirements necessary to taking on the 40k lists likely to be seen at tournaments, it became pretty clear not only WHY I was consistently losing at these events but also what the ultimate list is to be able to actually compete at them.


I know.  I KNOW.  I never saw myself even considering taking a list like the Space Marine Battle Company.  I even felt bad typing out that sentence.   Free points is something that I feel is driven by the GW marketing team and is not good for the overall health of the game.  However, the power and durability of the Battle Company can’t be denied and when it gets down to it, the Battle Company shores up a LOT of what normally loses me the game.    The ability to take a pounding from the enemy and still have the bodies to win the day is something of a new concept for me.  One of my main issues in competitive 40k is that I have a tendency to put all my points into a very small amount of units and as soon as those units start evaporating I’m pretty much out of the game.  With the Battle Company, there are so many units that all do pretty much the same thing that losing even half of your force by mid-game is not all that bad.

oprah free shit


Another benefit for me and running Battle Company is the ability to re-roll most of my shooting dice throughout 3 turns of play.  For someone who is going against the Battle Company this sounds like a nightmare but for someone who rolls as consistently poorly as I do (which has been documented!) this really appeals to me.  The last reason Battle Company really appeals to me is the fact that I own MOST of the models already that are needed to create my list.  Who doesn’t already have a bunch of Space Marines, Rhinos, and drop pods collecting dust in shoe boxes?  Anyways, the list below is the list I plan on creating over the next couple months as we get closer to the two GT sized events I will be attending in 2016 TSHFT in Seattle and Adepticon in Chicago.  There will likely be many small RT sized events leading up to those GTs and I just so happen to live in an area of California that has tons of very good competitive type 40k players in which to try this out against and get feedback on my tactics.  Let me know what you think of the list in the comments and any ideas to make it better.

White Scars Battle Company


Khan – Moodrakken

Chaplain – Bike, Auspex

Command Squad – Bikes, 4x Grav, Apothecary

Command Squad – 5x Melta, Drop Pod

5x Tactical Marines – Rhino, Grav Cannon, Combi-Melta

5x Tactical Marines – Rhino, Grav Cannon, Combi-Melta

5x Tactical Marines – Rhino, Grav Cannon, Combi-Melta

5x Tactical Marines – Rhino, Grav Cannon, Combi-Melta

5x Tactical Marines – Rhino, Grav Cannon, Combi-Melta

5x Tactical Marines – Drop Pod, Melta Gun, Combi-Melta

Attack Bike – Multi-Melta

Attack Bike – Multi-Melta

5x Devastators – Rhino, 2x Grav Cannon

5x Devastators – Rhino, 2x Grav Cannon

10th Company Taskforce

3x 5 man Scout squads with Bolters

Inquisitorial Detachment

Inquisitor – 3x Servo Skulls


About Jason

Raw Dogger, aka, Phat J Sleaze (formerly of the Booty Boyzzz) is a highly opinionated, questionably skilled 40k enthusiast. When not working at Frontline Gaming, he can be found down on Jabroni Avenue.

43 Responses to “Rawdogger Ascendant or My Battle Company Journey”

  1. Jax October 15, 2015 8:01 am #

    That’s alot of Grav you have there OMGScoots

  2. Hotsauceman1 October 15, 2015 8:29 am #

    I too have made the jump too battle company………

  3. fluger October 15, 2015 8:34 am #

    I think you’re going to poo your pants with how much mobility you have compared to IG.

    • Hotsauceman1 October 15, 2015 9:04 am #

      The thing is, IG is godly in Straight book missions, especially Eternal war.
      But Progressive scoring hits them in the knee caps more than any other army.

      • fluger October 15, 2015 9:31 am #

        As someone that runs horde IG, I’m sadly all too aware.

  4. iNcontroL October 15, 2015 9:13 am #

    Really really solid list.. also give credit to Frankie for helping you out! He is the BC Jedi here.

    • Rawdogger October 15, 2015 9:33 am #

      Well to be fair I did tell him all the units I wanted included in the list, but yes, Frankie helped me develop it to this point.

      • jamie October 15, 2015 11:27 am #

        war concoction does the same thing with blood angels 😀 and u get the added benefit of not playing marines lol

  5. fluger October 15, 2015 9:32 am #

    I really can’t wait to get my orks up and running at events and play spoiler to all these armies.

    • Vercingatorix October 15, 2015 11:03 am #

      What do you want to run?

      • fluger October 15, 2015 11:24 am #

        This is the list I’m working to paint up. Should be ready for TSHFT in January.

        Grukk Face Rippa: 130

        Mek: 15

        30 Boyz: 220
        Nob, Power Klaw, Boss Pole

        30 Boyz: 220
        Nob, Power Klaw, Boss Pole

        30 Boyz: 220
        Nob, Power Klaw, Boss Pole

        10 Gretchin and 1 Runtherd: 35

        3 MegaArmor Nobz: 125 + 35
        Boss Pole
        Trukk: Reinforced Ram

        3 MegaArmor Nobz: 125 + 35
        Boss Pole
        Trukk: Reinforced Ram

        20 Stormboyz: 220
        Nob, Power Klaw, Boss Pole

        2 Rokkit Buggies: 50

        2 Rokkit Buggies: 50

        4 Kustom Mega-Kannons: 120

        2 Trakta Kannons: 63
        1 Ammo Runt

        8 Lootas: 112

        Wall of Martyrs Bunker: 75
        Ammo Dump


        It’s not very orthodox, but I’ve been enjoying how it plays. I just need more reps.

        • Vercingatorix October 15, 2015 6:37 pm #

          That looks fun! Personally, I don’t think the rokkit buggies are worth it because they no longer can kill a rhino reliably. I kept trying to make them work but they may work well for grabbing late game objectives.

          What does Grukk do?

          • AbusePuppy October 15, 2015 7:31 pm

            Grukk has the fixed warlord trait of reroll Morale/Pinning while within 12″ of him, which can really cut down on casualties from Mob rule.

            Rokkit Buggies aren’t there for the firepower, they’re there to serve as harassment/blocking units that can also score Maelstrom points as needed. In that respect they’re very solid, as they are just absurdly cheap.

  6. C-Stck October 15, 2015 9:48 am #

    Yeah, the sad state of the game where only a tiny number of builds from just a couple codexes are playable in anything other than casual games. 🙁

    Marine bikes and battle company. Why even post a list? We’ve seen it before a thousand times. It’s a great list and very commonly played, and won with, even by players who aren’t very good at 40k.

    • Rawdogger October 15, 2015 11:58 am #

      LOL and that describes me to a T

    • iNcontroL October 15, 2015 1:46 pm #

      What a post lol — chins up buddy whatever has you down will pass. WH40k is actually not in a terrible spot and if you check out some tourneys you will see a decent number of lists from a decent number of codexes actually! 🙂

  7. AbusePuppy October 15, 2015 10:02 am #

    I’m not entirely sold on massed Grav Cannons over other options- sure, you’ll wreck the face of some units (like Wraithknights, etc) but you’ll also run into targets (like anything protected by a Void Shield) that you’re completely unable to hurt. A bit more diversity in your firepower would do you some good.

    I would trade some/all of the Grav Cannon Tacticals for Las/Plas Razorbacks with a Meltagun inside. It’s 5pts less than your current setup and gives you some long-range firepower in the form of the Lascannon as well as excellent holdout guns in the form of the Plasmagun and Melta inside- you’re essentially prepared for anything. It is slightly lower overall firepower, but much better ability to apply it when and where you want to.

    Also, get a transport for that second Command Squad! Just because you’re on bikes doesn’t mean you don’t get a free bonus tank.

    If you’re going deep on Grav, you might think about giving the Scout sergeants Combi-Gravs. They can be a nasty surprise for people.

    The Inquisitor feels a bit wasted- I assume he’s basically to slow down enemy Battle Companies and whatnot? If you could scrape up enough points to give him Terminator armor and a psycannon, he could be doing you a lot more good coming in from a Drop Pod.

    • DCannon4Life October 15, 2015 10:54 am #

      I second the recommendation for Las/Plas Rhinos. Missile Launchers are also fine, ‘reach out and touch someone for cheap’ weapons to put in Tactical Squads as well. Being able to chip a couple of wounds off of a Wraith Knight (or dropping Void Shields) before slinging your Grav all over the place is a good thing.

    • Vercingatorix October 15, 2015 11:04 am #

      There’s also the threat of daemons or orks where the grav becomes entirely useless.

      • Hotsauceman1 October 15, 2015 11:22 am #

        But bolts dont.

        • Vercingatorix October 15, 2015 6:38 pm #

          True, but bolters simply don’t have the bite they used to, even with re-rolls.

      • Jural October 15, 2015 11:43 am #

        Yep, Daemons will be his biggest weakness… but the Khorne lists he will actually do well against.

        He may also have problems with flier spam… so watch out for those 6 Heldrake, Cultists spam lists! Easy way to avoid them is to win your first game 🙂

  8. Jural October 15, 2015 11:38 am #

    Have you thought about adding dice which only roll sixes? I find they are really the key to my most successful lists.

    • Rawdogger October 15, 2015 11:59 am #

      I do have some dice I bought on Ebay that have had the 2’s drilled to look like 5’s. I might give them a shot!

  9. Jural October 15, 2015 11:41 am #

    Is that too much grav? Is that even a thing?

    Will there come a day when I can bring 240+ gaunts to a battle and laugh when the opposition is wounding them on 6+, lol?

    no, the answer is sadly no ;(

  10. Maeglin October 15, 2015 12:19 pm #

    I think the Battle Company needs a hammer unit to back up the numbers and firepower. If I had the cash I’d go with a very similar list to yours and Frankies but with the command squad on bikes equipped with storm shields and a couple of thunder hammers.

  11. Sadclown October 15, 2015 1:20 pm #

    Grav with grav amp is fine against Orks, though Daemons still getting a save hurts. You want plasma in your list, flamers and dont treat your auxillary as a throw away tax. Consider silly things like Ultramarine Battle Company with Librarus Conclave, and the Stalker formation give them prescience and rending.

    Also remember tactical doctrines affect attached ICs so a psycannon totting inquisitor would reroll to hits if attached to a tactical squad.

    • Rawdogger October 15, 2015 1:44 pm #

      Actually that came up in a recent game and only AFFECTED characters attached to a Tactical Squad get the re-rolls, AFFECTED meaning having Chapter Tactics.

      • Sadclown October 27, 2015 6:21 am #

        Sadly, I figured that out later crushing all my dreams of inquistors in terminator being useful.

  12. Hotsauceman1 October 15, 2015 1:36 pm #

    Another thing, do you have spare 20pts?
    The no scatter legacy of glory might be worth it for a droppod.

  13. Ming October 15, 2015 2:33 pm #

    I’m secretly charting up a battle company for the Standish Standoff…

  14. Dbiesto October 15, 2015 3:56 pm #

    It definitely is starting to feel like if you don’t have hundreds of dollars set aside for the next big thing, you get stomped out in tournaments. Now that forge world is a go for playing, it feels like some people are spending their life savings just to win. I almost bought a hell talon, until I realized I was about to pay $200 for the book and a 115 point model lol.

    • Vercingatorix October 15, 2015 6:40 pm #

      The people I’ve noticed like that are people that are good and have won tournaments and have a collection of models that come out when there good again. I know I have a big pile of orks that won’t be used very often but maybe in 2 years the ork codex will come out and spamming 90 lootas will be amazing. Well I didn’t go buy it when the codex came out! I’ve had them forever!

    • AbusePuppy October 15, 2015 7:34 pm #

      RD’s list doesn’t have a single FW model in it; neither does my own current tourney list, nor inControl’s (unless he’s changed it.) Many factions make no use of FW or supplements at all, even with their “best” builds.

      Certainly this is an expensive game and 6th/7th Ed have made it more expensive, but mostly because of the presence of Allies rather than other factors.

      • punchymango October 16, 2015 6:34 pm #

        On the flipside, I feel like my CSM need extensive FW just to compete on even footing.

        It’s nice that FW decided to throw us a bone, though, and with GW price hikes a lot of the quality CSM kits aren’t that much pricier than regular stuff anymore, but still.

        Also, the pace of releases this year was really to blame; the meta was radically shifting every few months, as every Necrons and every new book after them added new superlists you needed to buy new stuff to add/counter. Another faction getting something new and powerful no longer means “I need to think about how to beat that,” it means “let’s see if I can add that to my own list.”

        • Leth October 16, 2015 7:51 pm #

          I think that is more an issue of the CSM codex being garbage than anything related to FW.

    • Leth October 16, 2015 7:52 pm #

      Honestly I already had almost everything I would need for a battle company.

      Personally I just want to be able to put the 50-60 power armor bodies on the table without feeling like I am gimping myself.

  15. Luke October 15, 2015 6:28 pm #

    I’m working up to a Salamanders Battle Company. I think I’ll just do 100% drop pods. The deployment flexibility will be pretty nice.

  16. Bassface7 October 15, 2015 11:38 pm #

    Frankie called, he wants his list back.

    Srsly though battle companies are great fun to play/play against. Really refreshing to have a competitive list that isn’t just an unkillable deathstar.

  17. FrequentRespawn October 16, 2015 3:06 am #

    Having seen this disgraceful Lions Blade Strike Force list on BOLS (a Battle Company in its own rights), I have to say that this is quite good. AS a DA player I tend to use more Plasma (only on BKs of course) but a mix of grav and melta is very solid.

  18. general Oadius October 16, 2015 7:07 am #

    Actually Blood Angels have a formation where they get 400 points in free upgrades. the rule is called 1st company armory and it gives two units of 10 vanguard veterans with jump packs free power weapon upgrades: power sword, lightning claw, power axe and a unit of 10 sternguard in a stormraven get free COMBI upgrades so for 860 points you get 20 vanguard veterans with power weapons, 10 sternguard with 10 combis and a stormraven. if you put two of those together you’d be getting 800 points of free upgrades for 1720 points. it’s not a gladius battle company but it’s not that bad either. FYI blood angels > smurfs all day long.

  19. CaptainA October 16, 2015 7:19 am #

    You should not feel bad at all for going this route. IMO most of us need a rock hard list just to go 3-2 or 4-1. Most of us are not the Steven Segal of 40k even though we hope to be so I say take the hardest dirtiest list you can and play the crap out of it. You have a lot of quality players up there to practice against and you work at a game store so no excuses! Transform from Karate Kid Jaden Smith to Frank Dux ala Bloodsport and Kumite!

  20. Lord Krungharr October 17, 2015 5:07 am #

    Maybe Chaos Marines will get a battle company style formation soon? With free dreadclaws?!

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