Monday, February 8, 2016

Curse of the Wulfen Review

This review of the Space Wolves Curse of the Wulfen book looks at the rules for running a "Wolf Claw Strike Force" detachment and the many core, command and axuilliary detachments within it, compared to the standard Combined Arms Detachment as well as the Company of the Great Wolf detachment from the Champions of Fenris book.

Wulfen Rules
If you're looking for information about the Space Wolves Wulfen unit, please read this Wulfen Tactics article.

War Zone Fenris: Curse of the Wulfen is a set of two books.

The first book tells the story of the Space Wolves Great Companies and their fight to retrieve the Wulfen and the Chaos Daemons who seek to take advantage of their divided attentions.

The second book is packed with new rules and formations for Space Wolves and Chaos Daemons.

For obvious reasons, we're only going to look at the Space Wolves stuff!

Please note that all army lists included here are using the minimal number of units required in order to demonstrate how feasible the detachments are in a competitive environment.

Wolf Claw Strike Force

The Wolf Claw Strike Force represents the typical structure of a Space Wolves army. It consists of at least 1 Core, 0-5 Command and 1+ Auxiliary detachments. So once you have your Core, you can bolt on additional detachments quite easily.

Benefits of taking the Wolf Claw Strike Force include the new Counter-Charge special rule, as well as your Core choices having Fear and Furious Charge - although you need 2 Greatpacks or 2 of the same Legendary Great Packs with 1 Wolf Lord and 1 Wolf Guard Battle Leader in order to do this.

Counter-Charge looks great on paper!

At the end of your opponent’s Charge subphase, you can charge any of your unengaged units into close combat with an already engaged enemy unit.

So if your opponent charges their Striking Scorpions into a pack of Grey Hunters, flanked by a pack of Blood Claws. The Blood Claws would then be able to attempt to charge the Striking Scorpions in your opponent’s Assault phase!

Greatpack


Wolf Lord or Wolf Guard Battle Leader
0-1 Wolf Guard, Wolf Guard Terminators or Thunderwolf Cavalry
1-3 Blood Claws, Sky Claws or Swift Claws
0-1 Lukas The Trickster
3-5 Grey Hunters or Land Speeders
1-2 Long Fangs
0-3 Wolf Scouts
0-2 Lone Wolves

Right away, we can see that we need to pay a 'tax' by taking certain units we may otherwise be hesitant to field in a competitive army.

Blood Claws, Grey Hunters, Land Speeders and Long Fangs are all units we may not wish to take, depending upon the composition of your army.

I appreciate that Games Workshop have tried to create a themed detachment, but that doesn't help us when it comes to winning our games.

We attempted to build a couple of forces using the Greatpack.

One was a Drop Pod force based on this army, which consisted of a Wolf Lord, Wolf Guard, Blood Claws, 3 packs of Grey Hunters and a pack of Long Fangs, all in Drop Pods.

We then added Ulrik The Slayer, a Stormfang and Murderfang as Auxiliaries.

The only issue with this force is the lack of tough and hard hitting units, such as Berserker Dreadnoughts (a Venerable Dreadnought with Great Axe and Blizzard Shield). This is because Dreadnoughts can only be taken in an "Ancients of the Fang" Auxiliary detachment.

We found ourselves taking a Wolf Lord and Murderfang instead.

The army didn't feel particularly strong.

The second force we built from the Greatpack was more aggressive, which consisted of a Wolf Guard Battle Leader on a Thunderwolf, Thunderwolf Cavalry, Blood Claws in a Drop Pod, Grey Hunters in a Rhino, 2 Land Speeders and a pack of Long Fangs.

We then added Stormfang and Murder Pack Auxiliary choices.

It's not a bad little army.

However, we're feeling ourselves drawn to the standard Combined Arms detachment and Company of the Great Wolf detachment for more creative freedom.

I guess time will tell how good Counter-Charge is and if we really want to jump through so many hoops to get it.

Legendary Greatpacks


The following Core detachments are variations on the Greatpack, each with unique requirements and special rules. Each are based on the Great Companies within the Space Wolves Chapter. Many require your force to be led by a special character Wolf Lord or a Wolf Guard Battle Leader.


The Firehowlers


1 Wolf Lord or Wolf Guard Battle Leader
1 unit of Wolf Guard
2-4 units of Skylcaws or Swiftclaws
2-4 Grey Hunters or Land Speeders
0-1 Long Fangs
0-1 Wolf Scouts
0-2 Lone Wolves

The Wolf Lord, Wolf Guard Battle leader and Wolf Guard must be equipped with Jump Packs or Bikes

Bonuses:
Leadership check or enemy can't fire Overwatch. ATSKNF or Fearless immune.
Re-roll failed charges
Roll 10 or more to charge and get Furious Charge.

If you want an army of Bikes or Jump Packs, then this Core Detachment is for you! You're definitely not taking Grey Hunters, you'll want fast moving Land Speeders to support your Bikes and Jump Troops. Mostly, you'll want Bikes though.

Obvious Auxiliaries include Stormfangs and Heralds of the Great Wolf (on bikes) to join your Swiftclaws and Wolf Guard.

Lack of Thunderwolf Cavalry could be made up for with some allied Imperial Knights.


The Ironwolves


1 Wolf Lord or Wolf Guard Battle Leader
0-1 Wolf Guard or Wolf Guard Terminators
2-3 Blood Claws
2-4 Grey Hunters or Land Speeders
1-2 Long Fangs
0-1 Wolf Scouts
0-2 Lone Wolves

Every unit must have a Dedicated Transport to carry all models in that unit.

Bonuses:
+6" for all vehicles when moving flat out.
-2 Leadership for enemies from Tank Shocking vehicles.
Units may disembark from Transports that moved 12"
All vehicle weapons and upgrades are FREE

To get the most out of this formation we want to get as many FREE vehicle weapons and wargear upgrades as possible.

So we're looking at Razorbacks. But let's not forget that a Stormwolf or Drop Pod can be taken as a dedicated transport too!

The big downside is that we must take 2 units of Blood Claws. Although we can abuse the Long Fangs to get more cheap Razorbacks.

Please note: Free vehicle upgrades DO NOT pass to Auxiliary detachments.

Wolf Guard Battle Leader on a Thunderwolf Mount with Storm Shield, Runic Armour and Powerfist, 2 Fenrisian Wolves.
5 Wolf Guard Terminators with Thunder Hammers and Storm Shields in Land Raider with Multi-Melta, Extra Armour, Hunter Killer Missile (free upgrades!)
2 Land Speeder Squadrons with Multi-Melta and Typhoon Missile Launcher (free upgrades!)
5 Blood Claws with Flamer in a Razorback with Lascannon and Twin-Linked Plasma Gun, Extra Armour, Dozer Blade, Hunter Killer Missile (free upgrades!)
5 Blood Claws with Flamer in a Razorback with Lascannon and Twin-Linked Plasma Gun, Extra Armour, Dozer Blade, Hunter Killer Missile (free upgrades!)
2 Long Fangs (1 Wolf Guard upgrade) in a Razorback with Lascannon and Twin-Linked Plasma Gun, Extra Armour, Dozer Blade, Hunter Killer Missile (free upgrades!)
2 Long Fangs (1 Wolf Guard upgrade) in a Razorback with Lascannon and Twin-Linked Plasma Gun, Extra Armour, Dozer Blade, Hunter Killer Missile (free upgrades!)

Add Stormfang Auxiliaries for more firepower!

My only concern is how this compares to the Space Marine Company Core detachment which gives you Razorbacks for FREE, although you then have to pay for the weapon upgrades.

The other approach to the Iron Wolves is to get ask many units in Rhinos (with free extra armour, bull dozer blades, extra storm bolters and hunter killer missiles!) as possible and drive them 24" across the board. That goes for your Wolf Guard's Land Raider too!

However, if your lightly armoured transports get popped on Turn 1, before they get to move, then you're in for a very tough time.


The Drakeslayers


1 Krom Dragongaze or Wolf Guard Battle Leader
1-2 Wolf Guard, Wolf Guard Terminators or Thunderwolf Cavalry
2-3 Blood Claws
2-4 Grey Hunters or Land Speeders
1-2 Long Fangs
0-1 Wolf Scouts
0-2 Lone Wolves

Restrictions TBC

Bonuses:
Monster Hunter
Stubborn
Furious Charge if Krom in play
Preferred Enemy (Characters)
If one friendly unit from this formation makes a successful charge, all other Drakeslayer units can re-roll failed charges.

Much like the standard Great Pack with a whole heap of benefits. Especially when it comes to charging. Combine this with Counter-Charge and you have a truly ferocious pack of wolves!

We modified the second Greatpack force we wrote earlier to the following:
Wolf Guard Battle Leader on a Thunderwolf, Thunderwolf Cavalry, Blood Claws in a Drop Pod, Blood Claws in a Rhino, 2 Land Speeders and a pack of Long Fangs.

We then added Stormfang and Murder Pack Auxiliary choices.

If you've come up with a strong Greatpack list, I recommend taking The Drakeslayers instead, just for the charge benefits and to make Counter-Charge even better.

As for Krom Dragongaze, he's not a bad Wolf Lord. But he's not a GREAT Wolf Lord, which makes me want to take a Wolf Guard Battle Leader on a Thunderwolf instead.


The Deathwolves


1 Harald Deathwolf or Wolf Guard Battle Leader
0-1 Canis Wolfborn
1 Thunderwolf Cavalry
2-3 Blood Claws, Sky Claws or Swift Claws
2-4 Grey Hunters or Land Speeders
1-2 Long Fangs
1 Wolf Scouts
0-2 Lone Wolves
0-1 Fenrisian Wolves

Bonuses:
Outflank.
When making reserve rolls, make a single roll for ALL Outflanking Deathwolves units. You can re-roll this. On a successful roll, all Outflanking units arrives from reserve and gain the Stealth special rule this turn.
Roll 2 dice and pick the highest for Sweeping Advances.

Well.. I'll just Outflank as much of my army as possible then!

Wolf Guard Battle Leader on a Thunderwolf, Thunderwolf Cavalry, 2 Blood Claws in a Rhino, 2 Land Speeders and a pack of Long Fangs and a pack of Wolf Scouts.

Long Fangs and Wolf Scouts (with cloaks and Sniper Rifles) can hunker down in terrain or in a fortification... and wait.

It's tempting to take Outflanking Lone Wolves, as well as Canis Wolf Born leading a pack of Fenrisian Wolves as well.

Obviously, this isn't a competitive army. But it's a fun and chaotic army to play. Honestly, where will all this stuff arrive? The left flank or the right flank? Who knows.

Don't forget that ALL Space Wolves have Acute Senses, allowing them to re-roll which table edge they arrive on from Outflank. So you could ensure that the majority of your force arrives on one flank.

But you could build some interesting deployment tactics around all this. Especially if you force your opponent to set up first!


The Blackmanes


1 Ragnar Blackmane or Wolf Guard Battle Leader
1 Wolf Guard, Wolf Guard Terminators or Thunderwolf Cavalry
3-5 Blood Claws, Sky Claws or Swift Claws
0-1 Lukas the Trickster
4-6 Grey Hunters or Land Speeders
1-2 Long Fangs
1 Wolf Scouts
0-2 Lone Wolves

Bonuses:
Any unit that can take a Drop Pod as a dedicated transport may take one for free (upgrades cost extra).
All Drop Pods arrive by Deepstrike Reserve on Turn 1.
All Blood Claws, Sky Claws and Swift Claws re-roll to hit in close combat while Ragnar is in play.
Fearless and Feel No Pain (6+) on the turn units disembark from a Drop Pod.

FREE Drop Pods! And they all arrive on Turn 1. Looks like we're building a Drop Pod army then...

Let's take the Drop Pod force based on this army again, which consisted of a Wolf Lord, Wolf Guard, Blood Claws, 3 packs of Grey Hunters and a pack of Long Fangs, all in Drop Pods.

Ragnar Blackmane
1x 5 Wolf Guard with 5 Combi-Meltas in a Drop Pod,
3x 5 Blood Claws with Flamer in Drop Pods
4x 5 Grey Hunters with Melta gun and Chainswords in Drop Pods
1x 5 Long Fangs with Multi-Meltas in Drop Pod
1x 5 Wolf Scouts with Melta gun

Auxiliaries
Wyrdstorm Brotherhood - 3x Rune Priests, Helm of Durfast
Arjac Rockfist

This comes to 1500pts.


There's a heck of a lot of infantry units going down.

The only issue is that the lack of tough, hard hitting unit in this army. Even when joined by Arjac, the Wolf Guard will struggle.

Although the Rune Priest may put out plenty of Strength 7 shots to deal with monstrous creatures and lightly armoured targets.

The 'tax' which forces us to take Long Fangs and Wolf Scouts is a bitter pill to swallow when we have to buy so many Blood Claws and Grey Hunters in Drop Pods to emphasise the strengths of this detachment.

This force also suffers from the fact that there are no Berserker Dreadnoughts or Thunderwolf Cavalry. Although Bjorn The Fell Handed in a Drop Pod would be a fun addition.

Yes, the option of Thunderwolf Cavalry is there, but in a Drop Pod themed force, they wouldn't fair well if left totally on their own for a turn of enemy fire.

I really want to get Ulrik The Slayer in here too, to buff all the infantry around him. But it's hard to cram in the good stuff you need when so many points have been spent on so many small units. It doesn't help that Ragnar isn't cheap either.

I'm determined to squeeze something good out of this Legendary Great Pack. It may just take some time.


The Champions of Fenris


Please Note: This does not appear to replace The Champions of Fenris codex supplement and is in addition to all existing rules.

1 Logan Grimnar or Wolf Guard Battle Leader
0-1 Arjac Rockfist
2-3 Wolf Guard, Wolf Guard Terminators or Thunderwolf Cavalry
3-6 Blood Claws, Sky Claws or Swift Claws
4-8 Grey Hunters or Land Speeders
2-3 Long Fangs
0-1 Wolf Scouts (TBC)
0-2 Lone Wolves (TBC)

Bonuses:
Fearless
Once per turn choose a special rule - Furious Charge, Monster Hunter, Preferred Enemy, Relentless, Tank Hunters. All Champions of Fenris within 12" of Logan Grimnar receive this special rule until your next turn.
All Wolf Guard Battle Leaders, Wolf Guard, Wolf Guard Terminators and Thunderwolf Cavalry have +1 Weapon Skill.

This is a MASSIVE detachment. Running Logan Grimnar on Storm Rider, alongside 3 packs of Thunderwolf Cavalry with any of the above skills cast on them would be amazing, but the 'tax' of spending points on all the other stuff would outweigh any of these benefits.


Heralds of the Great Wolf


1 Wolf Priest
1 Rune Priest
1 Iron Priest

So I have to buy 1 Wolf Priest, 1 Rune Priest and 1 Iron Priest when I'm likely to only want one or maybe two of the above in my army?

That's frustrating.


Wyrdstorm Brotherhood


2-5 Rune Priests

Harness Warp Charges with 3+ when using Tempestas discipline.

Every turn choose a Rune Priest of the formation. That one gets the following power:

- Living Storm (WC3)
24", S7, AP- Assault 2D6, Shock (For every 6 you get +2 hits). Add +1D6 attacks to the power for every Rune Priest in the formation beyond the 1st.

This formation is all about the Tempestus powers and the free Living Storm Power.

If you had 5 Rune Priests in this formation, that would result in 6D6 shots.

That's an average of 21 shots, resulting in 14 hits (+3 extra for rolling 6s). So that's 17 Strength 7 hits.

Want more accurate shots? Take The Helm of Durfast on the Rune Priest who will be your 'eye of the storm' for re-rolls to hit. You can ignore Cover Saves while you're at it too.

There are other powers they could cast as well.

The Wyrdstorm Brotherhood does not have to remain as a single unit. So you can spread these Rune Priests throughout your army.

Spear of Russ


1-2 Iron Priests
1-5 Predators, Whirlwinds or Vindicators
1-5 Land Raider, Redeemer or Crusader

One vehicle at 6" of one of the Iron Priests gets one of the following rules: Tank Hunter, Monster hunter, Precision shots, Preferred enemy.

All vehicles get the Power of the Machine Spirit rule if at 12" of one Land Raider.

It feels as though they wanted us to take a Land Raider and 2 Predators. Unfortunately, Sicaran Battle Tanks from Forgeworld are still so much better than Predators. Whirlwind Scorpius from Forgeworld is better than a regular Whirlwind. Vindicators are very hit or miss (quite literally!)

So there are better tanks available which make this Auxiliary detachment too expensive or not as effective.


Ancients of the Fang


1 Iron Priest
2-5 Dreadnoughts

Dreadnoughts form a vehicle squadron, re-roll to hit rolls in close combat and have It Will Not Die within 6" of the Iron Priest.
Dreadnoughts make all Space Wolves within 6" Stubborn.

It's frustrating that you can't place these Dreadnoughts in Drop Pods, because they are a squadron.

Due to the re-rolls to hit in close combat, combined with It Will Not Die, we're inspired to take 2-5 Dreadnoughts with the Venerable upgrade, Great Axe and Blizzard Shield for maximum survivability and close combat carnage!


Wulfen Murderpack


2-5 units of Wulfen

Add +1 to the Curse of the Wulfen roll for every unit on the battlefield (TBC)

There is also a 7+ result for Hunt and Kill tables:
Hunt: Affected units can move twice this turn.
Kill: Affected units get +1A

Wulfen units get an additional attack for every roll of a 6 to hit in combat.

We know that Wulfen are good, but this little boost to their tables and being able to generate extra attacks is very good indeed.


Wolfkin


2-5 Units of Fenrisian Wolves

Monster Hunter
Outflank

You can merge the units to form 1 big pack of wolves. If they number over 20, they all get +1 Attack.

If within 12" of the left or right table edge, any Outflanking Space Wolves units can arrive from Reserve on that table edge instead of rolling to see which table edge they arrive from.


Personally, I've never been a fan of Fenrisian Wolf Packs. However, this formation seems ideal as an Auxiliary to a Deathwolves Legendary Greatpack.

I would still only run 5 of them, led by a Cyberwolf (to bark challenges!).


CONCLUSION


The new formations haven't addressed the fundamental challenge of a Space Wolves army - which is getting across the board quickly in order to take the enemy head on. But also having the tough, hard hitting units to affectively do this.

That's why Thunderwolf Cavalry is so good, because it overcomes these issues.

Firehowlers, Ironwolves and Drakeslayers Legendary Greatpacks show signs of promise.

Firehowlers are fast, Ironwolves can be fast and/or Zzap things. Drakeslayers are stubborn and fierce.

They all seem fairly solid, even if the abundance of Blood Claws and Land Speeders is a frustrating tax to pay.

The Deathwolves are just whacky!

The Blackmanes have too many 'tax' units for my tastes.

The Champions of Fenris Legendary Greatpack is just too expensive in points.

Ancients of the Fang and the Wulfen Murder Pack have great potential, as they consist entirely of strong units.

If you have a big collection of Space Wolves, you'll have great fun trying all this stuff out. However, if you're the kind of player (like me) who builds a competitive 1,500pts - 2,000pts force, you may find the restrictions rather frustrating.

I'm seriously leaning towards the standard Combined Arms Detachment and The Company Of The Great Wolf Detachment from The Champions of Fenris supplement book for building my Space Wolves armies, then bolting on an Ancients of the Fang or Wulfen Murder Pack auxiliary formation.

Or I may just take Wulfen Packs as my compulsory Elite Choices...


For more info about these formations and more army lists for each of the Great Companies, please see The Space Wolves Players Hand Book.


Monday, February 1, 2016

Big Changes to The Space Wolves Blog


Since the Space Wolves Blog was beautifully bodged together on Blogspot back in 2009, it's grown into a massive website with pages all over place.

It's quite different from how it started out with a structure of tactics articles intended to provide the ultimate resource for Space Wolves players.

Since then, much of the content has grown out of date and needs to be updated. Just take a look at this Grey Hunter Tactics page written in 2010. It still ranks at the top of Google and is one of the most popular pages on the website. But its in desperate need of an update.

Meanwhile, many articles (while interesting) never get read. People can't find them through search engines or the navigation. Or maybe people aren't looking for that kind of information in the first place?

Basically, there's just way too much stuff!

So here's what we're going to do...

1 - Move to WordPress


Blogspot has been an awesome platform, but there's only so much you can do with it.
There's also a lot of technical stuff that can't be done. But I won't bore you with the details.


WordPress on the other hand, allows us to create a REAL website, which can be structured as a resource website with added blog functionality.

I've registered www.space-wolves-grey.com, and with the help of some web developers from the Space Wolves Facebook page, I'll begin working on the new website shortly.

However, we won't cull loads of content and redirect the old site to the new site until after the new Space Wolves release.

I'd be a complete moron to rush a site migration and risk blowing the site up at such a crucial time.

2- Structuring a Resource of Information


A new website design will allow us to make essential information more easily available. This will also be mobile friendly, as so many people now view the website on mobile or tablet devices. Yes, the mobile version of this blogspot site is god awful, but it's "mobile friendly" by Google's standards.


The updated site structure will focus on a group of 'core' articles including:

Tactics (for all units)
Army Lists (covering all army themes)
Hobby (essential guides)

All of which will be accessible from the site wide navigation in the header.
This new navigation will have drop down links to all of the essential articles for each section.

This should make all the important stuff much easier to find instead of trawling through the current Label system.

Google Analytics gives us some very good insights into what people want most of the Space Wolves Blog, which are tactics, army lists and hobby support.

Obviously, Battle reports, Wolf & Sister and other sections will still have their place in the navigation.


3 - Looking Professional


The look and style of the blog has been about as consistent as Games Workshop's art department. It's all over the place!

For a time the blog was styled around Nacho Fernandez's artwork, then it was styled around cropped sections from the Njal Stormcaller wallpaper. And right now it's styled very differently. Yeah, it's not consistent at all. Which means it doesn't look very professional.

I feel that a consistent look and feel will help the website to have a greater sense of authority for new visitors who don't yet know how much information resides within it.

The blog posts aren't much better either, due to articles featuring images from Games Workshop art and photos of different people's miniatures. Just look at the most popular posts on the sidebar and you'll see exactly what I mean.

For the general design, I want to bring back Nacho's "1980s Saturday morning kids action cartoon" artwork.


"Dare! Dare to believe you can survive. The power is there at your command..."


It may not be in-keeping with any of Games Workshop's artwork. But it's clean, it's fresh, colourful and evocative. Most importantly, people seem to love it too.


Photos of Miniatures

However, we need photos of stunning miniatures to illustrate the 'core' articles as well. The issue with this is that I'm not the kind of player who has 1 of every unit. I tend to make a single, very well researched army list that I'm happy with and then I'll tweak it with minor unit additions over time. I only ever build and paint what I know I'm going to play games with.

Mark Denson on the other hand, has EVERYTHING! And it's all beautifully painted.

I caught up with Mark over the weekend, as we were both attending the 3rd Greetings From The Warp tournament in Northampton. Mark's an awesome guy with a real talent for airbrushing and washes. He also fronts a rock/meta band.

I was so impressed by his miniatures (and his huge collection) that I asked if I could photograph his army and use them to illustrate each of the 'core' tactics and army lists articles.

Mark's Bjorn The Fell Handed, which appeared in White Dwarf


Thankfully, he doesn't live too far from me, so I'm really looking forward to meeting up with him, having a few beers, playing some games, talking about the hobby and taking some shots of his spectacular army.

4 - Less Updates, More Resources


If you're a follower of the Space Wolves Facebook Group, then you'll know that I post something awesome on there every single day.

It's a much more efficient place for instant 'check this out' posts.

I can also reach more people in this way than having to write and publish and substantial blog post each time something new comes out.

So for daily stuff, be sure to follow the Facebook page. For awesome resources of tactics, armylists, hobby guides and battle reports - that's what the website will be about!

Once all of the new rules (and possibly an updated Codex) drop, I will also be updating The Space Wolves Players Handbook. This will be made available at half the usual price for people who purchased the first edition.

Thank You For Your Support


The feedback I receive from you guys greatly helps to shape the Space Wolves Blog and what it offers to the community.

It's clear that people need (and really want) a resource to help them play the game well and build a strong list for the army that they feel most passionate about.

And you guys are the best fans that anyone could ever ask for - Fierce, loyal, courageous and generally very hairy!


Thank you for sticking with me through all my ups and downs.

I'm really looking forward to building you the best resource that I can for our army.

- Adam Smith


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Wulfen Rules & Tactics

Space Wolves Wulfen rules have been leaked. Jordan and I talk rules and tactics for this awesome new unit. Yes, we will be getting a unit of these amazing new Wulfen miniatures!


No doubt you'll want to know how to arm them, deliver them into the thick of the fighting and generally get your points worth out of them.

So here's a complete break down of what they do and why you'd give them various equipment before finding a place for them in your army - and in your battle plan.

Wulfen Rules

5 Wulfen: 150pts

WS:4 BS:2 S:5 T:4 W:2 I:5 A:3 LD:8 SV:4+

Special rules:
Rage
Know no Fear
Curse of the Wulfen
Counter Attack
Acute Senses
Feel No Pain
Bulky

Deathfrenzy: If a model in this unit is killed it can move up and attack at the end of the current initiative step. This even applies if the model already has attacked.

Leaping Bounds: This unit can run and attack. It also rerolls failed charge rolls.

Curse of the Wulfen:
ALL non vehicle models within 6" affected.
Blood Claws, Skyclaws, Swift Claws affected within 12"
Long Fangs affected with 3"

Wulfen, Servitors and units that start in transports are not affected.

At the start of the player turn, roll a dice for ALL units. The affect lasts until your next player round.

Units outside of combat roll on the Hunt Table.
Units in combat roll on the Kill Table.

Hunt
1-3: re-roll failed charges and get Hammer of Wrath
4-5: +3" when you move, run or charge.
6: Furious Charge and +D3 attacks when charging, unless they have Rage

Kill:
1-3: +1 Initiative
4-5: Re-roll to wound
6: Death Frenzy (see Wulfen rules)

Options:
May contain up to 5 more Wulfen…. 30p/m
Each model may take a salvo grenade launcher 2p/m
Each model may take one of the following:
Great Frost Axe 8p/m
Two Frost Claws 12p/m
Thunderhammer and Stormshield 20p/m
One Wulfen can be upgraded to Wulfen Pack Leader with two Frost Claws 20p
This unit may take a stormwolf as a dedicated transport

Weapon Rules:
Salvo Grenade Launcher: 12", S4, AP5, Assault D3, assault grenades in close combat
Frost Claws: +1S, AP2, Shred
Great Frost Axe: +3S, AP2, Unwieldy, Merciless Swing (Strike at normal Initiative when charging)


Wulfen Tactics


Here is a conversation I had with Jordan about the Wulfen unit. Between us we were able to quickly figure out what's good about them and the tactics we would use to optimise and play them.

If you get bored, skip to the summary at the end. I felt I should include all this as it may give you guys some more ideas that we haven't thought of yet.


Jordan: I finally kick my wolf problem and now I've got to buy Wulfen! The wulfen are positively broken and I love them

Adam: Pack Leader with Frost Claws looks like a bargain for the points!

Jordan: I've got to be honest there's a million ways I want to try to run them. They don't have fleet so no running straight up a board even though they can run and charge with rerolling charges. I'll still probably footslog them once or twice to see how it pans out.

Assault units in flyers are dead to me.

I might try dropping a few units in with fast attack pods.

Landraider could be a way to go but that price tag.

These guys are just cheaper Calvary without the movement Calvary have so they're harder to peg.

I'm gone try a few things. Hammer and shield for 20 points is huge

Adam: That would get around the issue that they only have a 4+ save. Although we don't know what "Curse of the wulfen" does as a rule yet.

Jordan: I'll consider that a fair trade for 30 point 2 wound models with FnP built in. Not to mention I'll likely run a few with shields or attach a character with a better save. They're still outstanding in combat against anything. Getting to attack when they die wether they have or have not attacked is huge and being elites is also huge. 8 packs of these bad boys with CoF, at only 30 points a model you have as many wounds as grey hunters for similar points and 2X as much destructive cc power! I'm giddy right now thinking about the possibilities.

Also statistically a 3+ Invulnerable and 5+ Feel No Pain is almost as good as a 3+

If a model in this unit is killed it can move up and attack at the end of the current initiative step.
This even applies if the model already has attacked.

Adam: So it actually pays to have them strike at I5.
TH + SS isn't so good, as they'd strike last and not get 2 rounds of attacks in.

Jordan: Oh yeah? Unless they die at initiative step 4 they pile in and attack.
The hammer won't have to worry about not getting its attacks before dying. Sure, it won't attack twice but it's still getting it.

Adam: But if they are I1 they only get to attack once if they die in earlier steps
I'd want the X2 attacks.

Jordan: That makes it better than any hammer in the game though. A 50 point model that's always going to get its attacks when it's in cc is huge. It's also a T4 model with 2 wounds and FnP so it's not going to die that often and anything instant killing it is strength 8 and most likely unwieldy anyway. Look, you have 5 attacks each on the charge. If not you have 4. You DO NOT need 8 thunderhammer swings per dude. You're already almost too good at combat at that point, you'll abolish whatever you fight and get shot down the next turn.

Adam: I'd give 2 TH+SS, 2 Frost Claws and the Pack Leader with Frost Claws.
Grenade launchers all round if they're only 2pts each.
They don't seem to take up a 'hand'.

Jordan: Yeah, they're pointless.
I was worried about these guys rules, but they're pretty scary.
Question is how we actually deliver them.

Adam: Yeah, that's gonna take some doing.
They can be joined by HQ on Thunderwolves right?
Iron Priests on Thunderwolves with Cyberwolves!

Jordan: OMG you gave me the idea I needed!!!

Adam: I wouldn't put them in a Stormfang. You'd be waiting for Turn 3 for a charge...

Jordan: DUDE WE CAN SLINGSHOT THEM INTO COMBAT WITH IRONNPRIEST AND WOLVES!

Adam: Oh, you use the extra move/charge of the Thunderwolf to spread your line out and make contact. Then the wulfen pile in with the enemy pile in moves.
Iron Priest can tank with the Cyberwolves at the front
My only concern is that with so much micromanagement, it could go wrong.

Jordan: Yeah. Good turn one option but unless they're setting you up with a 2" charge, detach turn 2 before charge. The ironpriest cannot run and charge
Otherwise we're looking at a Land Raider to get them there.

Adam: How many Wulfen would you run? I think 5 is enough?

Jordan: I'd want to try it a few ways. 30 points is steep but unless they're getting instant killed it's like having 2 guys. I'd want to run a bigger squad but I feel like they'll just be too good at their job and get shot down or be too big of a point sink for a slow unit. They're competition get with thunderwolves on points which isn't looking too good for them.

Adam: Great Compulsory Elites choice for Company Of The Great Wolf Formation though ;)
Don't forget Company Of The Great Wolf Formation character challenge bonuses.


CONCLUSION


To round up, we both agreed that we would run a unit of 5 Wulfen and that having Feel No Pain will help to keep them in the fight, as they have 2 Wounds, despite having a 4+ save.

However, we would definitely take 2 Wulfen with Thunderhammer and Storm Shield for a 3++ Invulnerable save. Not forgetting that you have 2 Wounds and Feel No Pain with that. Also, the base Strength of 5 means that the Storm Hammer strikes with Strength 10.

Although we wouldn't take a whole unit of Wulfen armed with Storm Hammer and Storm Shield. Because then you would miss out on their awesome Death Frenzy special rules.

Salvo grenade launchers are totally worth taking at 2pts per model. But we don't have to take them for everyone. So we will put these on 2 models.

Great Frost Axe is so good for the points and the model looks so nice.

Finally, the Pack Leader with Frost Claws upgrade is an absolute must have. And don't forget that he gets Challenge related bonuses in a Company Of The Great Wolf Formation with those +1 S, AP2 Frost Claws! He'll be issuing lots of challenges if you ask me.

That comes to 230pts.


Getting Them Into Combat:
We've got our optimised unit. Now we just need to get them across the board and into close combat.

Unless you're playing Apocalypse, the Stormwolf will only get them into combat on Turn 3 at the earliest. They need to be stuck in by Turn 2!

We feel that you need either a Land Raider, run them forward on foot, or run them forward led by an Iron Priest riding a Thunderwolf with 4 Cyberwolves to soak up incoming firepower, pass invulnerable saves to Wulfen with Storm Shields and slingshot them into combat more quickly (as explained in the conversation above).

But, having see the recent Wulfen Murderpack formation, you may as well simply buy 2 units and run them forward. It would have cost the same points to transport your 1 Wulfen pack in a Stormfang or Land Raider anyway!

Curse of the Wulfen
This should be called 'blessing of the Wulfen' or quite simply 'let's watch everyone go insane!'.

Blood Angels can eat their hearts out. Space Wolves just became THE crazy close combat Chapter.

Blood Claws, Skyclaws and Swift Claws are the obvious favourites, as they benefit if they're within 12". But our power units like Arjac's Shield Brothers and Thunderwolf Cavalary are most likely to get the best benefits from this. As if they weren't destructive enough already.

The only downside, is that your opponent is going to pour all his firepower into your Wulfen, because they're just too damned good. And they make everything around them even more ferocious.

So we need to focus on keeping our hairy brethren alive.

We'll update these Wulfen tactics as more information becomes available. But if they can't be joined by Independent Characters to tank some wounds, then we're definitely putting them in a Land Raider. Probably a Redeemer.

Either way, the Wulfen look like an awesome unit, in both their rules and their miniatures.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Curse of the Wulfen

Curse of the Wulfen, a Space Wolves campaign book has been confirmed.

We know we'll get new Formations, but what about the new Wulfen unit rules?

And will there be an updated Space Wolves Codex?

When we consider that the Tau Empire recently got an amazing update off the back of a campaign book, I have high hopes for the Space Wolves.

As many of you know, it has never sat well with me that the humble Grey Hunter became overpriced and overlooked in favour of Thunderwolf spam.

For me it gnawed at the essence of what a Space Wolves army should really be about.

However, at the same time, I appreciate that Games Workshop is doing its best to make the Space Wolves VERY different from standard Space Marine armies.

These new Wulfen miniatures are the perfect example of this.

Someone on the forums commented that the Wulfen miniatures were intended to be part of the 6th edition Space Wolves release (along with Murderfang/Venerable/Bjorn Dreadnought, Stormfang/Stormwolf and Logan Grimnar kits) but had been held back for various reasons.

From what I've been told from some of my contacts in the past, this does not surprise me.

Remember that most of the things we are seeing now were created back in 2013.

Whatever went on in the Games Workshop design studio that year brought about radical changes to their business.

Thankfully, I feel that the current format of Codex books are excellent and would love to see all armies get the same 'decurion' treatment which began with the Necrons.

PREDICTIONS

Dark Angels got a 6th and 7th edition Codex. Space Wolves and Blood Angels should get new Codex books too.

Space Wolves are a best selling army for Games Workshop and it would be an embarrassing judgement in marketing not to relaunch them.

So with these high hopes and trends from previous releases, I make the following predictions:

  • Tau like campaign book with new formations



  • Tau like updated Codex



  • 13th Company formation



  • Champions of Fenris supplement merged into new Codex



  • Formations very different to Space Marines Codex



  • Krom Dragongaze clamp pack miniature



  • Return of Chainfist + Storm Shield for Lone Wolves and Wolf Guard



  • Dreadnoughts to receive increase in Attacks




  • Hold on to your wolf pelts! We could be in for a bumpy ride of Codex changes.

    The Ultimate Space Wolves Resource

    Welcome to the Space Wolves blog -the unofficial resource to building, painting and playing the Space Wolf army in Warhammer 40K.


    We aim to provide you with all the painting guides, modelling tutorials and game winning tactics you need to get the most from playing your Space Wolf army!



    Recommended Warhammer 40K Blogs