With access to the Heavy Machine Gun and Missile Launcher, the lowly Fusilier can put the pressure on other normal line infantry or play a secondary Active Turn killer. With its BS 12, Fusiliers are going to hit more reliably that most basic line troops in the game. Keep in mind though that Fusilier is still a line trooper with 1 ARM, 1 wound and WIP 12, which means that survivability is going to be low if you are not sticking to cover.
With the HMG, Fusilier can go on the attack and then go into suppressive fire while being a low cost model at 18 points and 1 SWC. Fusilier with a ML is able to be a threat to TAGs, Heavy infantry or opposing link teams, though the problem is that ML is a burst 1 weapon, which means ML works more as a reactive piece than Active Turn killer if not in a link team. With a profile that has access to Combi+LGL, it is possible to start tossing speculative grenades at the opponent who is close up and behind cover. However, 9 BS with being in good range is going to be hard to pull off most of the time, but it can make the opponent think twice about moving up with his models bunched up together.
If you are playing Neoterran Capitaline Army, the Fusiliers offensive capabilites are amplified due to putting them in a core link team. In a full core link team, the HMG against an opponent in cover will be throwing an impressive five dice at a BS 15 in perfect conditions.
Seeing as Fusiliers are your basic line trooper with no immunities, they are more than likely going to die once a good hit goes through. Along with that, WIP 12 means that any shot they do survive means that they are diving for cover 40% of the time from a guts roll. Even though you are ARM 1, that 5% chance of saving is not going to make much difference outside of cover. In most cases, you want these guys in cover for the most part or far from the action to be order generators.
This changes in the event that you are playing Firefight and managed to roll +4 ARM on the Booty LV2 chart, however this is a rare occurrence that you should not bank on.
- Not often used, but the Fusi Forward Observer has deployable repeater. One trick is to bring him up to the objective and deploy said repeater, using it as a deterrent against opposing hackers trying to take said objective if you are fielding a KHD Hexa.
- As mentioned before if you are playing NeoTerra, Fusiliers can be put into a full core link. This makes them a force to be reckoned with in both active and reactive turn if you are taking an HMG and ML/Multi Sniper loadout.
- Being that the Fusilier hacker is only 18 points and half an SWC, if you are running Bulleteer then the hacker is worth taking to buff your attack bot with Assisted Fire and be a specialist in certain circumstances.
Being that they are line troopers, they are easy to remove with just a good hit and most types of ammunition. And with lack of BTS, they are susceptible to Viral, E/M ammunition for Isolation, and Breaker weaponry for example. Along with that, anything that has access to Camo, TO Camo, Mimetism or ODD is going to hamper Fusilier's main benefit of BS 12.
If they are in link team and are clumped close together, they become even more vulnerable to blast template weapons and speculative fire.
Fusiliers are primarily going to fit into three categories: Budget/Second-Wave Specialists, Budget support weapons platform and/or order generators/lieutenants.
The first category is usually going to include either forward observers and hackers in your list. The forward observer used to take objectives as a second wave or being an aro piece with flash plush. Hacker Fusi is very much the that principle for objectives but helps to buff your Remotes such as Bulleteer or Sierra. Keep in mind that at WIP 12 you are more than likely going to be putting orders into fusilier to make sure you grab the objective. Going the support weapons route, ML is good for threatening TAGs in vanilla PanO. MSR is not a bad option for a cheap sniper piece, but will be competing against the more expensive Kamau and Nisse that have access to MSV 2. The third makes the most sense, being that an ordinary trooper and lieutenant are only a modest 10 pts. That means you can get a couple HI and then be able to safely fill out the list with cheap orders (at least in PanO's case). Keep in mind that said WIP 12 mentioned before is going to be a hamper with gaining priority.
If you are planning to play a Fusi core link in Neoterra, an HMG is a really good option to turn a Fusilier into a Active Turn Killer. A good core link will usually consist of an HMG Fusi, ML/MSR, Hacker and two regular Fusiliers. This however is not set in stone, as you can drop the ML/MSR option if you want to spread out your SWC points among other models in your list. An cheaper alternative to that if you still want some firepower is to take Combi+LGL if you want template weapons. Granted this is more close range but it can work in your favor. The hacker is good here to be the specialists who can go and score the objective while the rest of the link team holds down the position. With the last two, you can leave it as your regular troopers or have them be forward observers/paramedic to have two more specialists in the squad. It is possible to have your lieutenant be part of the link team, but with only one access to Chain of Command in vanilla and none in Neoterra this option becomes more risky.
Being that these are your order generators most of the time, you want them deployed hiding in cover or prone. If by chance you get the first turn, then it is wise to put some of your specialists in position to start heading up for next turn if things are desperate. In most cases however, you want your hacker specialist to be hiding away from the action for buffing your attack remotes. Preferably as well your Forward Observer should be in cover using his flash pulse to blind someone for getting too close.
If running a link team in NCA, it is worth putting your ML available behind cover if you are getting second turn. If you have first, then it is worth putting both HMG and ML in the front and have both switch off being the link leader to fit the current situation.
If you are in the need of a budget Sniper and have the SWC to spare, Mutli Sniper Fusi is good at holding down positions or making your opponent think twice about moving up without some smoke grenades. ML Fusi is not bad if you want to put pressure on a TAG from simply moving up and controlling a fire lane or to get a good blast on a clumped up link team or specialist.
If you are planning to run forward observers, then they can use flash plush to great affect to blind the opposing player's models during their active turn.