Monday, July 18, 2016

Space Wolves Warlord Traits

Here's a break down of the Warlord Traits available to Space Wolves, including which ones to choose when and why.

This includes the Warlord Trait Tables from Codex Space Wolves, Champions of Fenris, the Warhammer 40K rulebook and the Escalation supplement.

After all, which table you may choose to roll on will greatly depend on the HQ choice you have chosen to be your Warlord.

It's natural to assume that your Warlord will be a Wolf Guard Battle Leader on a Thunderwolf, as this is the most points effective HQ choice.

But I appreciate that this may not always be the case. Some players prefer a Rune Priest, Wolf Priest, Iron Priest or characterful Wolf Lord in Terminator Armour to lead their forces.

So I've considered these for each Warlord Traits Table to advise on which would be best for which Characters.

Space Wolves Warlord Traits

D6 Warlord Trait

1. Saga of the Warrior Born:
When fighting in a challenge, the Warlord re-rolls all failed To Hit rolls.

2. Saga of the Wolfkin:
The Warlord, and all friendly units with the Space Wolves Faction consisting entirely of models with either the Beasts or Cavalry unit type, have the Stubborn special rule. In addition, if a friendly unit with the Space Wolves Faction is within 12" of the Warlord at the start of the Assault phase, all models with either the Beasts or Cavalry unit type in that unit have the Furious Charge special rule until the end of the phase.

3. Saga of the Beastslayer:
The Warlord has the Monster Hunter special rule.

4. Saga of the Bear:
The Warlord, and his unit, have the Feel No Pain (6+) special rule.

5. Saga of the Hunter:
The Warlord has the Outflank and Stealth special rules.

6. Saga of Majesty:
The Warlord, and all friendly units with the Space Wolves Faction within 12" of him, must re-roll failed Morale checks and Pinning tests.

All of these are massively beneficial for a Space Wolves Character riding a Thunderwolf and leading a pack of Thunderwolf Cavalry.

If your Warlord isn't a Character riding a Thunderwolf, then Saga of the Beastslayer is great for a Rune Priest casting long ranged Psychic Powers. But you'd have to be lucky enough to roll it and lucky enough to roll some good Psychic Powers or part of a Wyrdstorm Brotherhood formation.

Saga of the Bear is a nice to have. But you really need your Warlord to be leading a unit that's designed to take a beating to make the most of it. Like Thunderwolf Cavalry or Wolf Guard Terminators with Storm Shields.

But once again, you need some luck to roll this.

Often, the wisest strategy is to look at a Warlord Traits chart as a whole and then choose a Warlord who would be most likely to benefit from most, if not all of the results available.

Champions of Fenris Warlord Traits

D6 Warlord Trait

1. Fire in the Blood:
The Warlord can re-roll a single failed saving throw every turn.

2. Thread-cutter:
When fighting in a challenge, the Warlord re-rolls all failed To Wound rolls.

3. Gatekeeper:
Nominate one weapon carried by your Warlord. That weapon has the Master-crafted special rule. Note, however, that this cannot be applied to any Relics of the Great Wolf.

4. Blessing of the Wolf:
The Warlord and any unit he joins during deployment have the Outflank special rule.

5. Thane to the King:
The Warlord has the Fearless special rule.

6. Deeds Beyond Counting:
The Warlord has the Preferred Enemy special rule.

These are very similar to the Space Wolves Warlord Traits. In some instances they're not as good, in others they may be better. Either way, they are far more blunt and direct, but can be improved by taking the right weapons and wargear for your Warlord.

Fire in the Blood is brilliant, as it allows you to re-roll a failed saving throw. Make sure you have Runic Armour for a 2+ save and a Storm Shield for a 3+ Invulnerable save. To make the most of this, your Warlord need to be in the thick of it, taking a beating. So Thunderwolf Cavalry of Wolf Guard Terminators should be his retinue.

Thread Cutter, allowing you to re-roll to Wound is amazing if you buy your Warlord the Fellclaw's Teeth Relic. Then he will be re-rolling to hit and re-roll to wound!

Gatekeeper is also great, but only if you didn't give your Warlord a Relic weapon. Krakenbone Sword is a very tempting choice for a Wolf Guard Battle Leader or Wolf Lord. But you may want to give them a Thunder Hammer (or Chainfist if in Terminator Armour) if you're holding out for this Warlord Trait. Otherwise it's a waste.

Blessing of the Wolf is a bit 'meh'. Thane to the King is great. Deeds Beyond Counting is awesome too, but can be rather redundant if you bought your Warlord the Fellclaw's Teeth Relic - which you're likely to buy to ensure that things go your way, whether you have a close combat Character or a Rune Priest casting Psychic Powers.

Once again, a Warlord riding a Thunderwolf benefits from all of these. Rune Priest and Wolf Priests benefit from a few.

So it would make more sense for Rune Priests and Wolf Priests to roll on the standard Warhammer 40K Warlord Traits, unless there's a particular trait that you really really want and you're feeling lucky!

Remember that a Warlord in a Combined Arms Detachment or Company of the Great Wolf Detachment can re-roll their Warlord Trait result.

Escalation Warlord Traits

If one player has a Super Heavy or Gargantuan Creature Lord of War unit and the other does not, the player without can roll on the Escalation Warlord Traits Table and gains +1 to Seize the Initiative.

Considering that Space Wolves are unlikely to take a Lord of War in their army, Escalation Warlord Traits have a certain appeal if you're facing down a Stormsurge, Warith Knight or some Imperial Knights.

D6 Result

1. Maximise Firepower:
While your Warlord is alive, his ranged weapons and those of his unit, have the Twin-Linked special rule when shooting at a Lords of War unit.

2. Super Heavy Hunter:
Your Warlord has the Preferred Enemy (Lords of War) special rule.

3. Slayer of Giants:
While in close combat with a Lords of War unit, your Warlord's attacks gain the Armourbane and Fleshbane special rules.

4. Uncanny Defence:
Any rolls made on the Destroyer Weapon Attack Table, the Thunderblitz Table or the Stomp Table against your Warlord and/or the unit he is with suffer a -1 modifier to a minimum of 1.

5. Kill Mission:
While your Warlord is alive, units in your army arriving from Reserves using the Deep Strike special rule will not scatter if they are placed within 6" of an enemy Lords of War unit.

6. Perfect Volley:
Once us only. Declare your Warlord is using this ability at the start of that Shooting Phaase.
For the duration of that Shooting Phase, any ranged attacks made by your Warlord and.or the unit he is with that target an enemy Lords of War unit have the Rending Special rule and are considered to be AP1.

Maximise Firepower isn't anything to write home about when Space Wolves do not have units with particularly impressive firepower.

Super Heavy Hunter isn't as good as other Space Wolves Warlord Traits which are similar.

Slayer of Giants is only effective for Warlords in close combat with a Lord of War. If your Warlord is doing this, he should have a Thunder Hammer anyway. So giving him Armourbane and Fleshbane isn't an important boost to his attacks.

Uncanny Defence is good for a pack of Thunderwolves who are very likely to take a Destroyer Weapon blast, Thunderblitz or get Stomped. Removing the 'remove all your models' 6 result on these charts is incredibly important.

Kill Mission is cool if you have Drop Pod full of Wolf Guard with Combi-Weapons, Wolf Guard Terminators or even Wulfen who will make a mess of that Super Heavy or Gargantuan. It's even more awesome if you're fielding a Drop Pod army. Or even better - a Blackmane's Great Company Formation used to build a Turn 1 Drop Pod army!

However, the issue with this table is that you need most of the results to be good for your Warlord or army. You really want results 5 or 6, but the odds of rolling them are too much of a gamble.

Although I would consider rolling on this chart if your have a Blackmane's Great Company Drop Pod army, because this force does struggle to deal with Super Heavies and most of these would benefit a Wolf Guard Battle Leader in Terminator Armour with a Storm Shield and a Chainfist.

Warhammer 40K Warlord Traits

While it's very east to roll on your Warlord Traits from the Space Wolves Codex or Champions of Fenris supplement, sometimes the regular Warhammer 40K Warlord Traits can give you a more strategic edge.

Tactical Warlord Traits

D6 Result

1. Tactical Genius:
While your Warlord is alive, you can discard up to 2 active objective cards instead of only 1.

2. Master of Interference:
One use only at the start of your turn. Your opponent must randomly discard 1 Objective CARD.

3. Well Prepared:
Generate one additional Tactical Objective on your first turn.

4. Forward Planning
After generating Tactical Objectives in your first turn, you may choose to use this Warlord Trait. Discard all your active Tactical Objectives and generate a new Tactical Objective for each one discarded.

5. Master of Fate
While your Warlord is alive, you can re-roll the dice for random numbers of Victory Points generated by Tactical Objectives.

6. Lead by example
If your Warlord and his unit claim any "Secure Tactical Objective X" cards, you gain +1 Victory Point.

Do you suck when it comes to Tactical Objectives?

Or maybe you're just very unlucky with your draws?

Then this Warlord Traits chart is definitely for you.

I know I'm going to start rolling on it the way my games have been going lately.

Just make sure you choose a Warlord who isn't likely to get killed before you can use any of these.

Command Warlord Traits

D6 Result

1. Inspiring Presence:
Friendly units within 12" use your Warlord's Leadership.

2. Intimidating Presence:
Enemy units within 12" use their lowest Leadership Value.

3. The Dust of a Thousand Worlds
Your Warlord and all friendly units within 12" have Move Through Cover.

4. Master of the Vanguard:
Your Warlord and all friendly units within 12" add +1 to their Run and Charge moves.

5. Target Priority:
Your Warlord and all friendly units within 12" re-roll to hit rolls of 1 when Shooting.

6. Coordinated Assault:
Your Warlord and all friendly units within 12" re-roll to hit rolls of 1 in Close Combat.

Basically, your Warlord and 'friendly' units within 12" gets a skill.

I'm liking this for Space Wolves armies with many units which are likely to be huddled together and/or moving around in a large mass.

A Blackmane Great Pack Drop Pod army springs to mind, where you could easily roll on this chart for a Rune Priest or Wolf Priest as your Warlord without having to resort to the typical Wolf Guard Battle Leader.

Obviously, a Wolf Guard Battle Leader on a Thunderwolf would benefit from this table too.

Personal Warlord Traits

D6 Result

1. Master of Defence:
Your Warlord has Counter-Attack.

2. Master of Offense:
Your Warlord has Furious Charge.

3. Master of Maneuver:
Your Warlord has Outflank.

4. Legendary Fighter:
Gain 1 Victor Point for each enemy Character slain by your Warlord in a Challenge.

5. Tenacity:
Your Warlord has Feel No Pain.

6. Immovable Object:
Your Warlord has Fearless and It Will Not Die.

Don't bother rolling on this and roll on the Space Wolves or Champions of Fenris Warlord Traits instead.

They are much better.

Strategic Warlord Traits

D6 Result

1. Conqueror of Cities:
Your units have Move Through Cover and Stealth in Ruins.

2. Night Attacker:
You can choose to use the Night Fighting rules on Turn 1.
All models in your army have the Night Vision special rule.

3. Master of Ambush:
Your Warlord and 3 non-vehicle units have the Infiltrate special rule.

4. Strategic Genius:
+1 to your Seize The Initiative roll.
Re-roll reserve rolls while your Warlord is alive.

5. Divide to Conquer:
While your Warlord is alive, your opponent has a -1 modifier to their Reserve rolls.

6. Princeps of Deceit:
At the start of your opponent's first turn, choose 3 of his units. Each of these must take a Pinning test.

This is an excellent Warlord Traits table that you can give to any HQ choice.

Thankfully, this is because your Warlord doesn't need to be in close combat or close proximity to benefit from any of these.

However, some of these are situational and require you to have a unit in Reserve, being able to benefit from Infiltrating units or that the board has a substantial number of ruins.

But for most Space Wolves armies, this isn't an issue.

I'm thinking of Tristan Whitehead's Space Wolves army in particular, which would benefit perfectly from this warlord table.


I feel we often overlook warlord traits for our armies when there are so many other components to Warhammer 40K for us to take into account.

It's also very easy for us to simply roll on the Space Wolves warlord traits and go smash face with a Wolf Guard Battle Leader on a Thunderwolf!

But there are so many better options available to you if you select the right warlord traits table for your army composition. Especially if you have an HQ choice that you do not want to perish in the midst of close combat.

Personally, having had so many issues with Maelstrom missions and unlucky card draws, I'm finding the Tactical Warlord Traits highly appealing.

Which Warlord Traits do you prefer to take?

Saturday, July 9, 2016

WIN! Leman Russ Primarch of the Space Wolves

Enter our competition to win Leman Russ Primarch of the Space Wolves legion, from Forge World.

THIS is THE miniature that EVERY Space Wolves player wants. There's no denying it. Seriously, I lost my frickin' mind when I saw the preview sculpts. And we haven't even seen the sculpts for his pet Fenrisian Wolves Freki and Geri yet.

Obviously this amazing miniature is not available yet, but we will send it to the winner of this competition as soon as it becomes available.

This competition will run until Leman Russ makes his glorious debut - ETA October 2016.

How Do I Enter?

The Space Wolves Blog is in need of battle reports.

So if you want to be in with a change of winning Leman Russ himself - simply Contact Us and submit a battle report. Yes, you can submit more than one battle report.

Your battle report must include:

  • An introduction
  • 2 armies of at least 500pts each
  • Army lists (one must be a Space Wolves army)
  • An explanation of your game
  • A conclusion
  • At least 3 Photos (start, middle, end of game)
  • Fully painted armies
  • Fully painted terrain
  • A 7th edition Warhammer 40K mission

  • For more info, read our guide on How To Write a Great Battle Report.

    It's really simple.

    Please be sure to send images as separate attachments to your text document.


    How Do I Win?

    Once Leman Russ becomes available (expected in October 2016), we will share the best 5 Battle Reports submitted on the Space Wolves Facebook Group.

    Here the Space Wolves Community will be able to vote for what they consider to be the best battle report.

    The winner will then be publicly announced on the Space Wolves Facebook Group, contacted directly and Leman Russ will be on his way to lead their Space Wolves to righteous victory.

    So what are you waiting for?

    Get your army built, painted and go play some games!

    Making battle reports is fast, fun and you could win your very own Leman Russ miniature too!

    Let me know if you have any questions in the Comments section below.

    Terms and Conditions.
    This is the legal bit. The judge's decision is final and discussions over rulings will not be entered into. Prize cannot be exchanged for cash or another item of equal value. The Space Wolves blog will front the costs for the prize. Prize draw is expected to take place in October 2016, but may occur sooner or later based on the release date of the Leman Russ miniature - to be confirmed. The Space Wolves blog may post all Battle Reports submitted on the blog and is deemed to own this content once it has been submitted. The winner will receive the Leman Russ miniature from Forge World. If they are within the UK, they will receive direct delivery from Forge World. If they are outside of the UK, they will receive tracked and insured delivery from another shipping provider to be confirmed. This competition is held with the intent of encouraging the Space Wolves community to voluntarily create and share compelling content with the Space Wolves Blog as the platform to bring battle reports to a wider audience. The Space Wolves Blog is completely unofficial and in no way endorsed by Games Workshop or Forge World. Keep calm and wolf for the wolf wolf.

    Sunday, July 3, 2016

    How Much Does Warhammer 40K Terrain Cost?

    6:23:00 PM by Adam Smith · 4 comments
    I decided to sell my foam core scenery on eBay and buy some plastic 40K terrain instead and quickly found out just how much it costs!

    Take Cover!

    In every tournament, I have ever attended, the terrain has been incredibly sparse.

    So much so, that I've had to learn to play on sparse terrain.

    And if anything, that terrain got in the way, more than it provided a helpful cover save.

    Although I was able to hide the odd small unit here or there.

    I've been plating on some VERY open battle fields where hugging cover from a hill or tree would provide a 5+ cover save.

    A 1/3 chance of passing a cover save is pretty damned slim!

    Meanwhile, my collection of foam core buildings considered to serve me well in friendly games at home.

    However, because they were all very uniform in their design and they were ruins, providing a 4+ cover save - games played at home were nothing like the games played at tournaments.

    My friends and I just weren't used to the Games Workshop plastic terrain, which had now become the standard scenery at most events.

    I should also mention that my foam core terrain did not back away very easily.

    Typically, I found that my photos of old games contained 10 pieces of terrain.

    So with this in mind, I start looking for examples of 40K gaming boards that other people had built.

    After finding this picture of a 4x4 gaming board from an event, I discovered that all of this could be made from a single Sector Imperialis boxed set. It just took forever to count all the tiles, walls and compare this photo to the contents of the box.

    All I needed to do now was to fill the remaining 2x6 space.

    Fortunately, I was able to pick up an old Crashed Aquila terrain piece on eBay for £10. Although some Quake Cannon craters would have been my second choice, as they occupy roughly the same area of terrain.

    Measuring up

    I purchased this 'Snowstorm' battle mat from for £52 and laid out the base of each ruin from the Sector Imperialis box (approximately £60 from Element Games).

    Even with the Crashed Aquila area terrain, this looks super sparse!

    So to keep in with the current trend of MASSIVE terrain pieces appearing in the Greetings From The Warp tournaments I keep attending, I feel I need an Aquila Strongpoint to provide something large, line of sight blocking and a large piece of area terrain with which to keep the battlefield interesting.

    My only grip is that this massive building costs £60 from Element Games, which is the same price as the entire Sector Imperialis box - although I have spread it out very well.


    Sector Imperialis: £60
    Aquila Strongpoint: £60
    Crashed Aquila: £10
    'Snowstorm' battle mat: £52
    TOTAL: £182

    So how much does Warhammer 40K Terrain cost?

    About £200 if you're doing it properly.

    Now I just need to glue the ruins to some wooden bases, build it all, paint it all, then measure it all to hopefully fit in a big plastic storage box.

    This terrain is made from such thick plastic and I will not be sticking any of the fragile bits, like lights or little spikes on any of the buildings.

    My terrain is being built to pack neatly in a box and be built to last.

    But most importantly, it's being built to reflect the games I would typically play on the tournament scene.

    Monday, June 20, 2016

    Space Wolves and Eldar Army List

    Following the success of the Space Wolves and Eldar doubles army list I wrote for the Greetings From The Warp tournament, I've been thinking about using the speed and synergy of these two top tier forces to create formidable army.

    Wolf & Eldar 1750pts Army

    Since the ITC has ruled that you can take an Elite Iron Priest and now the first draft of the Games Workshop Space Wolves FAQ also says that you can take an Elite Iron Priest, I'm taking an Elite Iron Priest!

    After all, I need 2 Elite choices to run a Company of the Great Wolf.

    Then my Thunderwolves will receive +1WS and my Characters get some nice buffs too!

    I've chosen for the Wolf Guard Battle Leader to be the army's Warlord, because he's going to be in the thick of the fighting and the Space Wolves Warlord Traits in the Company of the Great Wolf are perfect for this.

    Space Wolves: 950pts

    Company of the Great Wolf Detachment (Champions of Fenris Supplement):

    Wolf Guard Battle Leader: (Warlord)
    Runic Armour, Krakenbone Sword, Storm Shield, Thunderwolf Mount

    (Elite) Iron Priest:
    Thunderwolf Mount, 4 Cyberwolves

    5 Wulfen
    Wulfen Pack Leader with Frost Claws, 2 Great Frost Axes, 2 Salvo Grenade Launchers, 2 Thunder Hammer and Storm Shield

    3 Thunderwolf Cavalry:
    3 Storm Shields, 1 Powerfist

    3 Thunderwolf Cavalry:
    3 Storm Shields, 1 Powerfist


    I replaced the 5 man Blood Claws pack from my doubles list with the Wulfen pack as my second compulsory Elites choice.

    I also swapped the Thunder Hammer on the Wolf Guard Battle Leader for the AP2 Krakenbone Sword.

    This takes the 800pts army up to 950pts.

    PS: If you wanted a nasty little 1,000pts army, you only need to add a Rune Priest to the Wulfen Pack. You'd just need to drop a Salvo Grenade Launcher and the Wulfen Pack Leader upgrade (and take a pair of Frost Claws instead) to balance the points.

    Eldar: 800pts

    Combined Arms Detachment:

    Jetbike, Singing Spear, Spirit Stone of Anath'lan

    3 Jetbikes:
    3 Scatterlasers

    3 Jetbikes:
    3 Scatterlasers

    Warp Hunter:

    Wraith Knight:
    2 Heavy D Cannons

    This is the 800pts Eldar list from the doubles tournament. And it performed perfectly.

    Okay, the Warp Hunter could have been better. But that was due to my lack of familiarity with the unit.


    Before anyone cries "CHEESE!" because I'm fielding Thunderwolves, Wulfen, Jetbikes and a Wraith Knight, I just wanted to post this pic:

    Now that's out of the way, let's talk about how this army plays.

    Basically, I've built an army of tough, fast and hard hitting units, who can all take care of themselves and move freely.

    Transports can be a liability. They also require you to think ahead in order to get your transport into position, disembark the troops within and use them effectively.

    This army requires none of that micro management.

    Everything is free to move far, shoot from afar with impressive firepower, or simply surge forward, absorb enemy fire and crash into close combat.

    And so the Thunderwolves and Wulfen advance quickly with the aim of getting into close combat and take the brunt of the enemy's fire.

    Meanwhile the Wraith Knight majestically advances behind, taking the centre of the field and blasting other Gargantuan creatures or Super Heavies with its twin Heavy D Cannons.

    The Warp Hunter occupies an interesting role, by providing Strength D barrages to soften clustered formations (or strip hull points off tanks) from afar) or sweeping in for a close range kill with its Strength D Flamer template.

    Finally, the Jetbikes scoot around at the back of the army, claiming objectives and supporting the advancing Wolves with shots from their Scatter Lasers.

    The Farseer will never stray far from the Wraith Knight, who he will cast "Guide" on every single turn.

    After all, those 2 Heavy D Cannons are far too important to miss with! My dice rolls are pretty atrocious at the best of times.

    The Space Wolves make up for the Eldar's lack of durability and close combat potential. Meanwhile the Eldar make up for the Wolve's lack of long ranged firepower.

    Best of all, it's rather fluffy and in keeping with the background of both armies. Eldar are all about the bikes. Wolves are all about the... well, the Wolves!

    Anyway, considering the very slow rate at which Lee and I are building out armies, I may end up taking this to quite a few tournaments this year.

    In the meantime, check out the battle reports from the Greetings From The Warp Doubles Tournament.

    We had a blast playing this army.

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