Saturday, January 24, 2015

Deredeo Pattern Dreadnought - Preliminary Thoughts

In some of the most exciting news out of Forge World recently, the Deredeo Pattern Dreadnought was released, alongside some exciting new rules for the model. In this post, we'll look at both the experimental rules and the model.

Firstly to the rules.

The base cost of the Deredeo is not cheap, coming in at 185 points. What do we get for this though? We get a pseudo-contemptor dreadnought that exhibits a nice stat line which includes the invulnerable save that the Mortis Contemptor does, along side some rather interesting weapon systems.

The base weapons are the heavy 4 Anvilus Pattern Autocannons. At S8, these cannons are terrific, and will certainly give the Kheres a run for their money. To see how they compare, consider trying to take down an AV11 target.

The mortis contempt will get 12 shots, of which 10 will hit, and on average 1.67 will penetrate (rend) and 1.67 will glance (for 2 hull points of damage). With the Deredeo, 3.33 hits will be scored, and this will result in (on average) 2.22 glances and penetrations combined. This is clearly less Hull Points than with the Kheres. BUT: of these, 1.67 will also penetrate. Hence, its exactly the same amount of penetrations. For higher AV values, this result clearly changes.

Consider AV13. For the Mortis Kheres Contemptor, of its 10 hits, 1.67 will penetrate (and no glances). For the Deredeo, of its 3.33 hits, 0.55 will glance and 0.55 will penetrate. This makes to my mind the Kheres Mortis Contemptor have the edge. And certainly if you're going to go down the twin lascannon results, theres even more chance of penetrations that cause better damage.

The Deredeo can also be equipped with Aiolos missile system. This provides an additional Heavy 3 shots at S6 (and with pinning and can shoot at different targets). This isn't bad, but I just don't know if 35 points is a bit of a steep increase (compare with a havoc launcher upgrade on the Mortis). Armoured ceramite might almost be a given in 30k and recommended in 40k for extra survivability (particularly if you're up against lances from dark eldar).

Overall, I think the points are reasonable, but the Mortis Contemptor still has an edge over it when equipped with the Kheres.

Aside, I'm always intrigued by the presence of Anvilus equipment. I would contend that the forge world of Anvilus sided with Horus in the Heresy due to the power pack that came from there (i.e. the Anvilus pattern power pack). Hence the ability to build these Deredeos might be suspect in the time of 40k and they truly are relics left over from ten millennia ago.

To the model now.

I might be the only person in the world saying this, but I'm not actually a fan of the model. I know - I'm crazy. There are a couple of points here. Firstly, as an old timer, I don't think this incarnation is true to the original Rogue Trader era concept of the Deredeo (pictured). I like the helmet, to be fair, but the big chest just isn't needed unless you have a pair of wings on your back to justify it. Sorry!

What I do like though are the Aiolos missile launchers. I think these would make terrific conversions for Hyperios missile launchers (and the like), as well as interesting conversions for Whirlwinds (I'm not quite sure of their size in comparison to a rhino chassis, so please let me know if you have both in your possession - I'd love to know), as well as some of the more intimidating marines (terminators?) that can have similar weapon systems. I think these have terrific conversion potential!

Finally the cost. They're more than a primarch. Ouch!  I can't see me spending this much to be honest (not withstanding I don't like the model). I'd sooner spend it on a Sicaran Battle Tank, for which it is competing for the same force organisation chart slot.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Horus Heresy Review: Lord Chaplain Nomus Rhy'tan

This marine is a HQ choice for the Salamanders legion. He was one of the first generation chaplains of his legion and spread the "Voice of Fire" everywhere he went, becoming one of Vulkan's most trusted at the same time. The interesting aspect here, is that in the background Vulkan nominated him as regent of Nocturne. Hence he survived Isstvan by virtue of not being there.

In the game, Nomus is an enhanced chaplain HQ selection. He gives the inspiring presence warlord trait which is okay but not brilliant, by default. It is usual that it is his command that also wakes slumbering dreadnoughts. Hence as a force multiplier, he allows the selection of an additional HQ choice dreadnought talon as a non-compulsory selection. Hence with this HQ choice, the Salamanders player is probably going to be gunning for a dreadnought heavy force, presumably all armed with heavy flamers or the like. Add in Cassian Dracos and you have the making for an amazing force.

Finally, he doesn't have a crozius, so much as a Vulkan forged hammer to denote his rank. Naturally.

He already has an iron halo, so could potentially also add a dragon scale storm shield for added effect. But this starts bumping the points up. Already over 200 points at baseline, this is an HQ that you would want to build an entire army strategy around if you could. Hence he's not simply an HQ to be selected lightly. He's a characterful selection that must use the rest of his army to best exploit his dreadnought bonus. Otherwise, go for someone else.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Horus Heresy Review: Cassian Dracos

This is an HQ dreadnought for the Salamanders.

What stands out about him is his Vulkan-wrought armour. Not only does it feature an incredible AV14 on the front (let me say that again: AV14 on the front!), but he gets a slew of bonus rules on top of that. He can choose between firing his weapons as two heavy flamers or a twin-linked melta (in built in to his two close combat arms) that also have sunder. He doesn't care about your lance rules either. Or melta. Or Sunder. Or armour bane. Good luck against his frontal armour frankly. Hope you've brought lots of lascannons or infiltrators / deep strikers to aim at his bum. Because that's you're only chance against him frankly. 

If surrounded, then like Vulkan, he can choose to inflict a hit against everyone in base to base with him. Given he already has 4 attacks, I wouldn't be too tempted by this though, even in dire situations. 

And if he's the warlord, he automatically has a buffing trait to give feel no pain to models nearby. Place him near some terminators and you've got a near death-star being built. Plus your opponent cannot gain slay the warlord! This is game winning material frankly. 

He is very pricey though: costing more than a land raider. He certainly makes up for it. So long as you watch out for incoming fire against the rear armour, he's going to be amazing. But that rear armour is a big concern. Against the Alpha Legion and other infiltrating legions, he might be easy game to be honest. So just be careful. 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Horus Heresy Review: Vulkan

The primarch of the Slamanders, Vulkan is a force to be reckoned with both in terms of the background materials, and in terms of the actual rules.

Firstly, he's an army force multiplier, supplying bonus leadership and adamantium will to all his sons in the same detachment. They actually probably don't really need this bonus due to the legion rules, but it certainly boosts it to a good degree.

Due to Blood of Fire, Vulkans staying power rivals Mortarions. He re-rolls all IWND and Deny the Witch rolls due to sheer bloody mindedness!

Naturally, his armour is amazing: 2+/3+ is strictly awesome even amongst primarchs, but on top of this, he halves the S of certain types of incoming fire against him. Eat your hearts out Iron Hands.

His hammer, Dawnbringer, is just amazing. S10 and AP1 in melee cannot be underestimated. He can take on anything (ANYTHING!) in the game and win with this, short of another primarch. Instead of using this in melee, he can instead use a special earth-shatter attack. This is lower S, but provides a blast marker instead which is nice for when Vulkan is in danger of being mobbed and pulled under from massed marine assaults. 

For a ranged weapon, he has the Furnace's Heart - a beam like weapon given to him by Ferrus Manus. It has a reasonable range for primarchs at 18", but can certainly cause mass wounds due to the line of effect rule. At S6 and AP1, don't count this weapon out - ever.

Overall, I feel that Vulkan is one of the best primarchs for being a sheer beatstick. His army wide buffs are not strictly required, but simply a nice addition. Hence he's not doing anything for his force that (e.g.) Alpharius might be capable of. Hence I think he's more of a Angron style character in many ways, but different in temperament to say the least. Points wise, he's probably worth it in my opinion, largely due to his staying power.
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