Monday, September 5, 2011
Arjac's saga tells a tale of a stubborn refusal to give ground to a horde of teeming kraken things...until Logan Grimnar and his men dug him out from beneath a mountain of chitin and scythed limbs. The Great Wolf was so impressed that he named Arjac his personal champion on the spot!
On the tabletop, Arjac displays the exact same stubborness and general refusal to die. Essentially a Wolf Guard Battle Leader, he's a fantastic melee character without eating up one of your HQ slots or giving away a Kill Point.
In fact, for all his equipment and abilities, he's better value for your points than a Wolf Guard Battle Leader with the very same load out.
Equipment: wolf tooth necklace, foehammer, anvil shield, terminator armour
Skills: saga of the bear, Grimnar's champion, stubborn
Because Arjac is one of the Wolf Guard, he must be purchases along with at least 2 other Wolf Guard as an Elites choice. This also means that he may only lead Blood Claws, Grey Hunters and Long Fangs into battle.
Stats aside, when thinking about how best to use him, we need to take his equipment and special rules into account, just like we did with Logan Grimnar.
Strength 10 Thunder Hammer that he can THROW 6". It's a bad idea to base any tactics around this, but it's a nice little extra. It's worth noting that the thrown Thunder Hammer reduces the target's Initiative to 1, which makes it awesome in combination with a Rune Priest casting Jaws Of The World Wolf on a monstrous creature. But let's focus on Arjac's squad leading abilities for now.
Otherwise think of his Thunder Hammer as a power fist style weapon which mops up at the end of a close combat and batters any survivors with Wound Allocation.
This gigantic storm shield gives Arjac +1 attack in the first round of close combat. Combine that with his basic 3 Attacks, the +1 attack from charging normally (or counter-charging) and you've for 5 Attacks hitting on 3+ (thanks Wolftail Necklace!). Not bad at all.
Let's not forget he get's a 3+ invulnerable save from this on top of his 2+ terminator armour save.
Not such a great rule, but it will make your opponent thing twice before charging an Independant Character into close combat. If an enemy Character is in the combat, Arjac MUST allocate all his attacks against them.
I dare you to try and kill him. Even Mephiston probably can't before he gets pummelled in return.
Just remember that Arjac is NOT an Independant Character, so your opponent cannot pick him out from the squad he's leading in close combat. Suddenly he just got a whole lot better!
Should you lose close combat (most likely due to the softer squad members getting butchered), Arjac's Stubborn ability and high leadership is likely to keep the squad in place for another round of fighting. Arjac is often the last to die, which turns whichever squad he leads into a serious tar pit unit that inflicts a lot of casualties before it finally dies.
Arjac Rockfist Leading Wolf Guard
The only kind of Wolf Guard unit worth taking is Terminator Wolf Guard. We've established in other articles that 5 is the perfect number. Anymore doesn't give you much of a benefit for the extra points and they struggle to fit in transports too.
Fortunately, because Arjac is one of the Wolf Guard, he fits into the mix rather nicely and the squad doesn't have to lose their heavy weapon either.
Wolf Guard Terminator with combi-plasma and power weapon
Wolf Guard Terminator with combi-melta and power weapon
Wolf Guard Terminator with combi-melta and wolf claw
Wolf Guard Terminator with combi-plasma , power weapon and cyclone
Land Raider/Drop Pod Transport
Sure, it's a lot of points. But with Arjac leading them, they're going to kick ass and take a lot of hits. The lack of models is a concern though.
Arjac Rockfist Leading Blood Claws
Blood Claws suck. How did you know I was going to say that? Well, it's because it's true. They simply can't compare to Grey Hunters for the same points. Arjac gets no benefit by joining them and he gets no benefit in leading them...except he might have 15 guys to take hits before the enemy get around to him.
The problems with Blood Claws needing high numbers, resulting in high points costs outweigh the fun of being able to deliver Arjac into the thick of the fighting.
Arjac Rockfist Leading Grey Hunters
Wolf Standard and numbers make Grey Hunters the ideal unit for Arjac to lead. Think about it, the Wolf Standard allows you to re-roll 1's on a model with a 2+ armour save and a 3+ invulnerable save in close combat. It also makes those 5 Attacks at Strength 10 more likely to count when it comes to hitting and wounding. Grey Hunters give a good account of themselves in close combat too and are less likely to take casualties in the first round of combat thanks to rerolls from their Wold Standard.
Just be sure that your opponent isn't ready to blast them all to kingdom come the minute his unit breaks from close combat.
If your opponent is planning to throw more units into the close combat, then you'be succeeded in creating a tar pit which will suck lots of his units in as he struggles to single out Arjac with Wound Allocation and bring him down.
For a good example of how to use Arjac Rockfist really well, check out the Space Wolves VS 13th Company battle report. It took 2 Units of my Grey Hunters led by a Rune Priest 2 whole Turns to bring down Arjac and his squad. Of course this only happened after Arjac smashed my Rune Priest with his Thunder Hammer and battered one squad so badly that they broke and ran!
Arjac Rockfist Leading Long Fangs
You just wouldn't. Arjac likes to get up close and beat face. Long Fangs like to sit back and shoot. I think he'd get bored...
Arjac's awesome enough, but once he gets some rerolls thanks to the Grey Hunter's Wolf Standard, he's nigh on unstoppable in the first round of close combat.
Because he can't be singled out, your opponent has to fight their way through his entire squad before they can finally bring him down.
Even then, it's going to take more than a punch from a powerfist thanks to his Saga of the Bear.
He takes some serious killing and can hold up a lot of points, making it difficult for your opponent to commit units to objectives, let alone winning the battle.
There is 1 downside however: He cannot join more than a single unit during a game, because he's a Wolf Guard pack leader and not an Independent character. So start every game with a plan for him in mind and stick to it.
I honestly don't expect him to survive a single game, but he should always die gloriously atop a massive mound of foes!
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