Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Stormfang Gunship Tactics

Designed to dominate the skies like the dread Ice Wyrms of Fenris, the Stormfang Gunship is a new Heavy Support choice for the Space Wolves army, combining a small transport capacity with heavy weaponry and the unique prow mounted Helfrost Destructor, which fires an icy beam that freezes all it touches.

Not to be confused with the Stormwolf dedicated transport, which is made from the same plastic kit, the Stormfang is basically a gunship with a minimal transport capacity. So it's biggest selling point is the Helfrost Destructor.

Helfrost Destructor
How good is the Helfrost Destructor?

It can be fired in two modes
Dispersed: Range 24", Strength 6, Ap 2, Large Blast, Helfrost
Focused: Range 24", Strength 8, Ap 1, Heavy 1, Lance, Helfrost

The problem here is the Helfrost rule. A wounded model must roll under their Strength or be removed from play.

Unfortunately, there aren't that many units in the game with multiple wounds that can be dealt with by massed fire.

Ideally we'd want to "Freeze" Monstrous Creatures. But unfortunately their Strength tends to be very high, so the likelihood of removing them from play does not justify the cost of the Helfrost weaponry.

This makes the Helfrost Destructor on the very expensive Stormfang an exotic weapon which doesn't really serve a purpose that more conventional weapons do not already excel at.

The Stormfang also comes with 2 twin-linked Heavy Bolters and 2 Stormstrike Missiles.

Ceramite Plating
Melta weapons do not roll an extra dice to penetrate the Stormfang's armour at half range or less.

Skyhammer Missile Launcher: Basically a long ranged Autocannon. I think I'll pass!
Two Twin-Linked Multi-Meltas: Replace the default twin-linked Heavy Bolters with these, but they seem an expensive upgrade.
Twin-Linked Lascannon: A good choice to replace the 2 Stormstrike Missiles, but seems an expensive upgrade.

Simply put, don't take it!

The Stormfang costs almost as much as a Land Raider, it's transport capacity is rubbish and infantry can only disembark from the rear.
You'll need to spend at least +20pts in upgrading its weapons and you could buy a Land Raider Redeemer for that much.

The Destructor Cannon alone does not make this a good choice. And when there's so much competition for those Heavy Support slots in your Force Organisation chart, there are much better choices.

Thankfully, the Stormwolf is a superior flyer if you're looking for some air support for your Space Wolves.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Stormwolf Assault Craft Tactics

The Stormwolf is the Space Wolves dedicated flyer transports, designed to get up to 16 models into the thick of the fighting, then acting like a gunship to lend fire support to the advance of the main force.

This unit has actually been designed really well in terms of its battlefield role and comes with a massive transport capacity, Assault Ramp and plenty of guns to make it a worthy choice.

The rather obvious weapon upgrades also give us a good idea of how best to field the Stormwolf for its points.

The Stormwolf comes with a twin-linked Helfrost Cannon, twin-linked Lascannon, two twin-linked Heavy Bolters and Ceramite Plating.

The Assault Ramp is awesome for getting infantry straight out of the vehicle and into close combat while the Power of the Machine spirit helps us to fire an extra gun... usually at a second target.

Helfrost Cannon
What does the twin-linked Helfrost Cannon do?

It can be fired in two modes
Dispersed: Range 24", Strength 6, Ap 3, Blast, Helfrost
Focused: Range 24", Strength 8, Ap 1, Heavy 1, Helfrost

That's almost as good as the much more expensive Helfrost Destructor on the Stormfang!
And did I mention that this Helfrost Cannon is twin-linked?

16 Transport Capacity
You want to get 15 Blood Claws led by the Wolf Priest across the board? Then this is the vehicle to do it in.

However, when you add up the points cost of those Blood Claws, Wolf Priest and the Stormwolf, that's a lot of eggs in one basket.

Worst of all, your "basket" isn't going to arrive until Turn 2 at the earliest. Hmmm... But more in this below.

Skyhammer Missile Launcher: Basically a long ranged Autocannon. I think I'll pass!
Two Twin-Linked Multi-Meltas: Replace the default twin-linked Heavy Bolters with these, although they do seem expensive.

Because the Stormwolf has been designed as an Assault Vehicle to get 16 models into close combat, we only see the twin-linked Helfrost Cannon as a 'nice to have' and not a unique selling points like the Helfrost Destructor on the Stormfang (which isn't even that good!).

Twin-linked Multimeltas are a MUST HAVE on this unit. Combined with the Power of the Machine Spirit so you can fire at two seperate targets, they're totally worth taking. The twin linked Lascannon aids the Stormwolf in being a proper tank hunter and the twin linked Helfrost Cannon at Strength 8, Ap1 helps with this too.

Unlike the Stormfang, the Stormwolf has PURPOSE. 16 transport capacity, Assault Ramp and anti-tank guns.

Is it worth 235pts with the essential upgrades?


But what happens when you put a unit worth over 200pts inside it?
You get 435+ points that aren't in play until Turn 2, possibly Turn 3.
And that's a lot of points to not have on the board, killing things.

I saw a Space Wolves list posted up by Goatboy on Bell of Lost Souls the other day. Goatboy is known for his aggressive face-smashing lists. It was basically a Thunderwolf horde, which isn't a shock, because they're currently the most cost effective unit in the Space Wolves Codex.

But for his 2 Compulsory Troops choices, he had two packs of 5 Blood Claws, each with a Stormwolf as their dedicated transport.

And to keep points costs down, that's exactly how I would run a Stormwolf. Because I cannot justify or take the risk of pouring so many points into 1 unit that's going to kept off the board until Turn 2 or 3.

But this way, you get a 235pts gunship with anti-tank weaponry, which can fly on, just as your force crashes into the enemy and needs those high Strength, low AP guns. The packs of Blood Claws are just there to fill the Force Chart for a mere 60pts per squad.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Wolf & Sister part 92


Monday, September 8, 2014

Murderfang Tactics

The Dreadnought Murderfang was found wandering the wastes of a planet within the Eye of Terror, having slain a hundred score Chaos Space Marines.

What the Dreadnought's name had been or how he had come to be there remained a mystery.

But there was no questioning that the Curse of the Wulfen had taken hold, driving the warrior within insane with blood lust and feral savagery.

Frozen with Helfrost weapons and brought back to The Fang, "Murderfang" is only unleashed when the need is dire.

Murderfang is an Elites choice in the Space Wolves Codex. But unlike other Dreadnoughts, he is also a 'Character', which allows him to accept and issue Challenges in close combat. Because of his 'Character' status, he is also able to make 'Precision Shots'. But what makes him an awesome choice for a Space Wolves army is his high Weapon Skill, high number of Attacks and his Murderclaws.

Strength 7, Ap2, Master-Crafted and Shred. So basically, you get 2 re-rolls to hit in close combat and can re-roll all your failed to wound rolls. The high Strength and AP2 means you'll happily murder Space Marines, Terminators and Monstrous Creatures. Although Murderfang's Initiative of 4 may become an issue against the latter.

His Murderclaws also come fitted with a Storm Bolter and a Heavy Flamer.
You might use them. You might not. The Heavy Flamer is a nice to have though.

Special Rules
Furious Charge, It Will Not Die, Rage, Rampage, Muderlust.

Rage, Rampage and Furious Charge mean that Murderfang is brilliant in close combat, preferably cutting through whole squads of Space Marine equivalent infantry on his own. Although, he needs to be the one charging in order to make the most of all these rules. Especially when his Attacks can rise as high as 10! And he can go up to Strength 8 thanks to Furious Charge.

It Will Not Die is a fun thing that's nice to have.

Murderlust stops him from becoming Stunned or Shaken, which is awesome, because it means he's more likely to make it into close combat, which is exactly where you want him.

Drop Pod: Yes! How else are you going to get him across the board?

Considering Murderfang's points cost, he's a MUST HAVE for your Space Wolves army.

He's awesome fun to play and terrifying for your opponents to face.

The only issue is that as an Armour 12 Dreadnought without any Smoke Launchers he's likely to catch a Meltagun right in the face!

So how do you keep him alive? Drop Pod him in, alongside some other units and present your opponent with the difficult choice of targeting Murderfang (who is about to start rampaging through their army) or another unit that's equally as scary.

Although there's nothing to stop you from hiding him behind his own Drop Pod in order to get a cover save of some kind.

But Murderfang does answer the glaring issue with fielding Dreadnoughts - which is their need to be in close combat to avoid Meltaguns and Lascannons, but also their need for many more Attacks in order to actually win a close combat.

Expect to see Murderfang in most Space Wolves armies for the foreseeable future.
He's awesome for his points and great fun to play.

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!

space wolves army lists Coming Soon:
  • Space Wolves Footsloggger Army List
  • Space Wolves Drop Pod Army List
  • Space Wolves Missile Spam Army List
  • Space Wolves Mechanised Army List

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