Monday, July 9, 2012
At the time of release, Warhammer 40K included 4 types of fortifications: The cheap and cheerful Aegis Defence Line, the Sky Shield Landing Pad, the boxy Bastion and the enormous Fortress of Redemption.
So while more fortifications will be released in due course, this article should give you some idea on how best to use fortifications for which Space Wolves units and why.
Aegis Defence Line
For many players fortifications are a much needed source of anti aircraft fire, which is why we're so keen on taking them. The Aegis Defence Line is perfect for the Warlord on a budget. For 50pts you get a bunch of wall sections that give your guys behind it a 4+ cover save and a 2+ cover save if they Go To Ground.
You can deploy it in a straight line, allowing you to safely set up a gun line of men. Or you can wrap it around, creating a little bunker of sorts.
Because you can deploy it however you like (so long as every wall section is touching another wall section), it's great for those battles where terrain is scarce.
It's also great for surrounding one of your objectives with, making your claiming unit more survivable. And while you cannot claim Objectives while inside a Fortification, because the Aegis Defence Line is not a building (so you cannot go inside it), this is not a problem!
Meanwhile you can pay a few more points for an Icarus Lascannon or Quad Gun. Which is better of the two weapons? Well, it often comes down to what you're playing against and how you're deploying.
For example, because the Icarus Lascannon has enormous range, you could set it up in the corner of the board, out of harms way from most of the enemy shooting while being able to fire it at virtually anything on the entire 48" X 72" board...provided you have line of sight of course.
Otherwise the Quad Gun is amazing for taking out light vehicles by glancing them to death with it's 4 shots, which are twin linked of course. However, it's shorter range may may it more vulnerable to enemy fire.
For simplicity's sake, we tend to prefer the Quad Gun, because it's more versatile for shooting tanks, troops and most importantly aircraft (using it's Interceptor and Skyfire rules).
So if you need a little extra terrain on the board, some cheap anti aircraft fire or just a place for your Long Fangs or objective grabbing units to stay safe, we think this is the best choice considering how cheap it is.
Sky Shield Landing Pad
Essentially a big raised platform. The Sky Shield Landing Pad does two things. First, it helps Deep Striking units to land properly, but since Space Wolves don't have any use for that, let's look at the Shield part of its rules and how that benefits us instead.
The Shield bubble gives any units on the Landing Pad a 4+ invulnerable save. So you'd imagine that you'd use it to cram as many units on to it for a 4+ invulnerable save as possible right?
Well, it's bot the best idea in the world, as Long Fangs would benefit from the Aegis Defence Line far better.
Also, with so many units crammed on it, you know the Landing Pad is going to be the target of every Battle Cannon or blast weapon imaginable.
So other than raising your heavy weapons high to give them a good field of fire (and totally expose them to the enemy), we're really not a big fan.
Other fortifications do it better for the Space Wolves, and besides; the Landing Pad can't take an Icarus Lascannon or Quad Gun anyway.
Featuring 4 Heavy Bolters, 4 Fire Points and optional Icarus Lascannon, Quad Gun or Comms Array on top, the Bastion is an armour 14 box that doesn't come cheap, but seems alright.
Do you really need those 4 heavy bolters that are pointing at weird angles and likely to miss most of the time? Can you actually see anything our of those Fire Points? Probably not.
However, there's nothing to stop you putting a pack of Long Fangs up on the battlements for a 3+ cover save and a nice big field of fire.
Add an Anti-Aircraft gun and you're looking good. The Comms Array probably isn't something that Space Wolves will ever need, because the army has never done well by having lots of reserves.
However, just be aware that your opponent is still going to shoot basic weapons fire at the Long Fangs on the battlements. Meanwhile the Anti-Aircraft gun can be targeted separately too.
Just remember that because of the height of the Bastion, you need to measure down with your weapons while your opponents need to measure up! So if you have long ranged guns (usually heavy weapons), then you're laughing against the shorter ranged basic weapons which will have to get close to do your Long Fangs and AA gun any harm.
So be sure to stick your Bastion at the back with Long Fangs on top along with an AA gun.
Does this make the Bastion worth the price in points? We reckon so - especially when your Interceptor, Sky Fire, AA gun gets such a brilliant view from the battlefield up on high (and a 3+ cover save because it's on the battlements!).
Fortress of Redemption
Armed with a twin linked Icarus Lascannon and a Frag Storm Launcher, (which you're blatantly going to upgrade to the Krak Storm Launcher, effectively buying you a Battle Cannon) the Fortress of Redemption is effectively 3 Small Buildings and 1 Medium Building all bolted together - all for less than a Land Raider.
Featuring countless Points, plenty of Battlements and some deadly weaponry, this beast is perfect for any army that loves to sit and shoot. Because now they can do it in 4 Armour 14 buildings or in 3+ cover.
Only an army with a lot of melta and a lot of lascannons is going to be able to crack this beast of a building.
Otherwise you can simply deploy it in your HALF of the board (yes, right up the the central diving line that's 24" on from the board edge), fill it with Troops, Heavy Weapons and hide all your vehicles behind it and say "come and get me".
Obviously don't put it too far on the table that no one can actually get in it during deployment.
And let's not forget that the only entrance is a teeny, tiny door at the very back.
While Space Wolves are a mid-field army, the Fortress of Redemption doesn't work for them as well as it does for other armies like Imperial Guard, Grey Knights or even Tau. This really is a monstrous fortification that really benefits the super shooty armies.
At this time we don't know if fortifications are going to be allowed in tournaments.
However, BeakyCon has posted up how they are going to handle 6th edition rules for their tournament, with fliers, allies and fortifications allowed, except for the Fortress of Redemption and mysterious terrain, which have been excluded.
Personally I feel that the Fortress of Redemption is brilliant to fight over in a themed 'attack the enemy base' mission as part of a campaign, but otherwise it's just too big and abusable for a regular game of 40K. Just imagine if every player rocked up for a game with a fortress full of models? It would get really repetitive really quickly.
Aegis Defence Lines and Bastions on the other hand a great for giving your army a little boost. Just make sure that you don't need those precious points elsewhere.
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