Sunday, 12 June 2011

Space Wolves: Elite Units

Wolf Guard
Continuing on with a brief look at the units I have available for my Space Wolves army, next up we have the bodyguard of the Wolf Lord, the Wolfguard.

With so many options these guys can be tailored to suit any army. More often than not a combi-weapon is the first choice of weapon, followed closely by a specialist close combat weapon of the wolf claw/power fist/frost blade variety.

It doesn't even stop there. They can also be equipped with terminator armour which gives access to the heavy weapons of the assault cannon, heavy flamer and cyclone missile launcher. They even have access to all Land Raiders, Drop Pods and Rhinos for transport.

However, the ability that makes the Wolf Guard invaluable to me is them being able to be split up and used as pack leaders for the other Space Wolf units available in the codex if you so wish. They can nullify the Blood/Swift Claws headstrong rule, give the Grey Hunters an extra leadership point as well as adding extra close combat attacks with special weapons to an assault, same with the Scouts, and can add an extra wound (or an extra tough wound with TDA with a cyclone missile launcher) to the Long Fangs. Their versatility really lends it self to whichever tactics are best to overcome the enemy.

The second dreadnought of this Space Wolf army is primarily used as a long range fire base. With his assault cannon and missile launcher there is a fair chance that anything he can see will be taking some heavy fire.

Used alot during my initial return to 40k almost a year ago now, the dreadnought has slipped down the pecking order somewhat in favour of the Wolfguard, Scouts and Lone Wolves. He does however see a lot of action in games against horde armies (assault cannon and frag missiles will rip holes in large squads) and also against Necrons where the current aim of the game is to whittle them down to phase out as quickly as possible.

A dreadnought also tends to be a huge fire magnet until it is destroyed which means, whilst repeating myself from earlier posts, that while the dreadnought is taking fire, it leaves parts of the rest of your army unscathed and able to carry their objectives. Ideally though, with the longer range weaponry he has equipped, he should be dealing out some damage before the enemy can get enough on him to bring him down.

Wolf Scouts
A very popular unit for many Space Wolf players, the scouts are Grey Hunters with a couple of special rules and slightly different armour. They can pack just as much punch as a squad of Grey Hunters of a similar size, but can turn up from whichever side of the table you need them to, providing the dice rolls go your way!

I have seen these scouts turn up, blow a tank to smithereens and then move on to wipe out a couple of infantry squads. The threat of their arrival helps to shepherd your opponent forward, which will hopefully put them in the target sights of your Long Fangs or other heavy weaponry, and if it doesn't push them away from their table edge, then you have a very real chance to do some top quality damage to your opponents force. A Wolfguard pack leader can also be added to give the unit some additional bite, as they can bring combi-weapons to add to the units main usage.

I have heard a lot of talk of Scouts being a throw away unit but if used as part of a calculated strike against your opponent, it should be manageable to use them in conjunction with, say, drop podded Grey Hunters or some Swiftclaws, to eliminate or isolate part of an enemy force.

Lone Wolves
Equipped with a thunder hammer and storm shield and accompanied by a Fenrisian Wolf, this chap has seen a fair amount of action, which includes, amongst others, taking a Trygon down to its last wound, dispatching Daemon Princes and destroying Leman Russ Battle Tanks.

As he can't take any transport from the outset and being equipped in TDA, transporting him around is tricky unless you have a spare Land Raider. Generally he is run from one piece of cover to the next, until close enough to pop out and strike, or wait for something to assault him in cover.

As long as you wound with the hammer, you will always be striking at a similar initiative as the monstrous creature you have sent him out to take down or fall to while trying. His special rules make hunting anything with toughness 5 or more a priority. 3+ to hit with the wolf tooth necklace, re-rolls to hit T5 or more models and the thunder hammer wounding most things on 2+ makes him a threat to any creature on the table.

However, it is probably best to avoid getting him into combat with large squads or hordes as the sheer volume of numbers will finish him off pretty quickly and his attacks back will not count for anything.

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