How To Properly Wrap An Enemy Unit

How To Properly Wrap An Enemy Unit

May 20, 2020

Hello and welcome to another Tactical Tidbit by Skari. Thank you for commenting and engaging with the last article on improving competitively! It was well received so here is another competitive tactical article. Today I will explain how to properly execute a basic 'wrap and trap' move.

This is an aspect of the game that takes place in the charge and fight phases (and morale) it requires some nuance with the rules. First I will talk about the main purpose of this move, then I will explain the moves to pull it off and lastly I shall share some things to watch out for or to keep in mind when 'hugging" an enemy unit. So let's dive in:

The Tri-Point.

This is the basic mechanic that allows us to trap an enemy unit. When miniatures move in Warhammer 40k, they are not allowed to move through the space that is occupied by another model (usually the base is used to determine this).

Therefore you can place at least three miniatures around a base and this will prevent it from being able to move away... Hence the term 'tri-point'. Preventing the enemy from moving away can be game-winning! 

There are many mechanics that have come into the game that mimics this process: the White Scars "snare captain", Drukhari Wyches and their nets,  Night Lords stratagem or even things like Slaanesh Fiends, to name a few. Tri pointing and trapping an enemy unit is something almost all units can do and therefore it is a strategy that anyone can use in-game.

The main purpose I use this for is to prevent the enemy from shooting at me in their turn and then, by eliminating the unit I trapped in the opponent's fight phase they also serve as a stepping stone (or slingshot) into the enemy lines to then try and trap another unit, and so on and so forth. 

So, How do we do this?, I hear you ask. Let's jump into the scenario. 

A Very Killy Unit Wants To Trap A Very Squishy Unit.

I am going to illustrate the importance of this move and some of the nuance of it by using a very killy unit (repentia) to trap a very squishy unit (kabalite warriors). The repentia, charging into the squad, should wipe it out easily. However, the sisters player wants to prevent the Drukhari player from shooting at them next turn and therefore has to wrap the kabalites, not kill them. This will hold them in combat and keep the repentia alive to do more havoc later in the game. 

Step 1) Declare a charge and make your charge move.

The repentia gets ready to charge in!

As you can see, only one of the repentia are currently within 1" of the enemy, you do not HAVE to engage if you do not want to, however one model must be able to make it into the targetted unit of kabalites.

The remainder of the repentia unit is also placed further than 1" away from the model that is engaged with the kabalites, this prevents them from attacking the kabalites at all (remember coherency is 2") It also allows the repentia to pile in and remain far away from any kabalites while getting ready to later consolidate.

Remember, pile in and consolidation moves are made to end closer to the nearest enemy model, you can always make 2 enemy models equidistant to then pick what one you want to pile in or consolidate towards. 

Step 2) Pile in And Attack

Now to pile in.

As you can see, I have moved the Sisters in a way that will allow me to then consolidate and eventually tri-point a few of the kabalites, the reason I'm doing this is to make sure that I have a model to trap in case I get really lucky with my attacks and kill more than I want to, ideally the repentia unit will kill zero kabalites!  

But Repentia have mega chainswords! I hear you say. 

This is correct, however each model in the game is also equipped with a regular close combat weapon (main Rulebook FAQ page 1) and therefore you can choose to use it in place of your mega fancy weapon.

This is perfect for this scenario! Now the repentia will attack with her base strength and zero AP. Say that she gets lucky and kills one of the kabalite warriors.

The Drukari player will now remove the Sybarite that was in base to base for two reasons to lower the unit's leadership (as if any models flee you can remove the ones that are trapped but also to make it harder to wrap the unit.


Step 3) Tri-Point and close the trap. 

Lastly, you should use the consolidation moves to tri-point as many miniatures as you can in this case, or make sure that one enemy model is tri pointed well and you have enough models in case you take some casualties in return. 

There you have it! A trapped unit of kabalite warriors. Now the repentia will not be shot at and in the next fight phase, they should be able to easily cut through the kabalite squad as they can choose to use the mega chain swords to cut themselves out. 

Things To Watch Out For

I hope you have read through this and you can understand how important this can be to improve your competitive game! The Fight phase is one of the most powerful ones in the game and a good player will always learn how to use it to the max. Before we finish however I wanted to make note of a few things that you should keep in mind when doing this! 

Does the enemy unit have a lot of attacks, and will that threaten my trapping unit?

Can the enemy kill the trap with mortal wound output in the movement or psychic phase to free themselves?

Can the enemy unit (or a unit in my enemies army) shoot into close combat?

Will the enemy simply counter-attack in close combat to save the trapped unit?

The answer to these might change what you do to tackle the enemy army! However, you should ask these questions so that you are not unaware when the time comes. I hope you enjoyed this brief breakdown. Use these simple steps and you will improve your game.

If you need anything you can always reach out! Thanks for reading. This has been another Tactical Tidbit. 

Skari - Out. 

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