Monday, April 23, 2012
So with this in mind, it's time to drive forward in your Rhinos, pop smoke and pray you can make it through the storm of bullets, shells and energy beams, leap out of the burning wrecks and beat puny humans to a bloody pulp with your Grey Hunters.
You're going to be outnumbered, you're going to be outgunned. But all you need is an armour save, some decisive close combats and a lot of luck.
Based on my gaming experience, I'm going to explain how to beat Imperial Guard with Space Wolves while explaining what to look out for and how to best utilise your units to deal with each threat.
IMPERIAL GUARD ARMY STRENGTHS
If you ever get drawn against an Imperial Guard army that isn't all mounted in tanks, then it's a happy day for the Space Wolves. However, every competitive Imperial Guard army will be fully mechanised with Chimeras and Valkyries backed up by all manner of Manticores, Hydras and maybe even a Leman Russ or a Hell Hound.
More importantly, this gives the Imperial Guard lots of mobile heavy weapons which can make life hard for any army. So be sure to bring melta guns, lots of melta guns, 'cos you're gonna need them!
Thousands of 'em!
Always numerous, Imperial Guard armies will always outnumber Space Wolves. Sometimes you just feel like you're drowning in enemy units -especially when there are just tanks all over the place.
But just remember that the quality of Space Wolves troops will see you through and should make a bloody stain of even the best Imperial Guard units. You just need to get across the board and charge. There's nothing quite like the safety of not being shot at in close combat!
Unlike other armies, the Imperial Guard can't really pile everything into one big close combat to try and tie you up, because they will get slaughtered.
As the kings of firepower, the Imperial Guard are all about shooting. So while you will be able to take out key targets like Valkyrie Vendettas and light vehicles with your missile-spam Long Fangs, at the end of the day, they are going to blast you off the board if it comes down to a shooting match.
So pick your targets as a means of giving your Grey Hunters covering fire as they advance. The goal is to get those Grey Hunters into close combat and by limiting the firepower coming their way with your own long ranged firepower is the best way to ensure success.
IMPERIAL GUARD ARMY WEAKNESSES
Poor Quality Troops
Imperial Guard only have one weakness and that's the quality of their troops. However, it's also a great strength of theirs because they have so many expendable units. Because these units will crumple in close combat, it also means that if you charge, you're likely to wipe them out and be stuck in the open to get shot at in the Imperial Guard player's turn.
However, by the time you get to them, your squads will have probably taken quite a few casualties. Regardless, you can still be confident that you'll win close combats. Or at the very least, you can sit tight in a nice prolonged close combat, safe from all those nasty guns, although you may need to be lucky with your armour saves to survive.
TYPICAL IMPERIAL GUARD ARMY LIST
This is what most of the Imperial Guard armies I have faced have been like. Manticores and Hydras with some Valkyrie Vendettas for lots of lascannons, plus Psyker Battle squads to make my squads break and run. It's really not any fun to play against, but if you can keep fighting your way forward with true Space Wolf tenacity, you will get there in the end!
HQ Command squad
Commander with power sword and 3 melta guns
(X2) Psyker Squads:
9 Psykers and 1 Priest
Imperial Guard Platoon:
Command squad with 3 melta guns
10 Imperial Guard with melta gun
10 Imperial Guard with melta gun
6 veterans, 3 melta guns
6 veterans, 3 meltaguns
2 Valkyrie Vendettas
2 Valkyrie Vendettas
2 Valkyrie Vendettas
2 Hydra flak tanks
Imperial Guard Army Strategy VS Space Wolves
When playing any army which relies on shooting, target priorities are what will make or break a game while praying for the first turn!
Chances are that the Imperial Guard player will be forced to ignore the Space Wolves Long Fangs for the first turn as they concentrate on taking away the Space Wolves' mobility by destroying all of their transports.
Once mobility has been limited, they will then turn to long ranged firepower threats, before finally turning their guns on the Space Wolf Grey Hunters while utilising the Psyker Battle Squads to force fall backs whenever a Grey Hunter pack has to take a morale check.
Any attacks using units with melta guns will be used to stop Space Wolf units dead in their tracks from advancing. These melta units will be sacrificed of course, but when the Imperial Guard army is fairly numerous, this is a small sacrifice to make.
Space Wolves Strategy VS Imperial Guard
Start by deploying those Long Fangs in cover and simply get everything on the board, regardless of whether you have the first turn or not. You need to bring everything to bear, so reserves really aren't an option.
Having the first turn gives the Space Wolves an important advantage as you can drive all your Rhinos forward, fire your smoke launchers and take down a few of the Imperial Guard high firepower units with missiles from your Long Fangs and lascannon shots from your Razorbacks.
If you don't have the first turn, sit tight and take the hits on your tanks. There's not much else you can do. Just get ready to run those Grey Hunters across the board, hugging over as best you can.
As I've said, you're going to get shot and get shot a lot. Simply accept it and push forward as best you can. Keep your eye on the mission objectives and you just might do it. But you will have a much easier time if you get that first turn.
Also remember that unless an Imperial Guard unit is on foot and totally unsupported, it is always best to assault rather than rapid fire them. Assaulting will ensure that a unit gets wiped out and if you're lucky you may even avoid a round of Imperial Guard shooting by having your Grey Hunters locked in close combat, which they will of course win during the Imperial Guard turn.
Finally, don't forget to send those Land Speeders zooming up the flanks. Their multimeltas are great for taking out heavily armoured vehicles (or just downing Valkyries) and they can also work as a great distraction to keep all that firepower away from your main force. They are your only expendable units, so be sure to expend them well while causing the biggest distraction possible!
Imperial Guard are hard for anyone to beat simply due to the sheer amount of mechanised units and the torrent of firepower that they can throw at you.
But when playing Space Wolves, being able to take the hits while striking back with your long ranged firepower to eliminate key threats is the real strategy for success. Just be sure to carefully pick your targets based on supporting your Grey Hunters.
Your tanks will explode. You need to accept this.
Your troops will get shot and die. You need to accept this.
Now that you've accepted that you're going to take a real pounding, you can get on with playing effectively.
Now get those Grey Hunters up the board and hug cover as best you can, while using your Long Fangs and Razorbacks to take out key threats and provide supporting fire. Once those Grey Hunters get into close combat, you'll make short work of all those Imperial Guard infantry.
Finally, if you take Wolf Guard Terminators or Lone Wolves in terminator armour, then you're going to have a field day if you're good at passing all those 2+ armour saves. So long as you don't get jumped on with a lot of focussed melta fire, they tend to do very well against the Imperial Guard thanks to being able to deflect a huge amount of firepower.
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