Thursday, October 23, 2014

Scouring Chaos Space Marine Shoulder Pads for 30k

One of the things that I'm currently interested in undertaking is building an army for primarily 30k, rather than 40k. But I'm also keenly aware of the cost of such an undertaking. Hence one of the ways in which I want to try to save a little bit of money is to search my bits box for potentially useful parts that can double up, or be appropriated for 30k parts. 

One obvious source of bits for me is the humble chaos space marine sprues. As I've been an avid chaos space marine collector over the years, I find that I have plenty of bits from that range (both present and past moulds). 

Pictured above is one of the shoulder pads available on the chaos space marine sprue. But for 30k, I'm really not interested in the chaos star and skull that is depicted on the left hand side. Instead, I'm simply interested in a "blank" version of this, with the pseudo-heresy era protective strip (or even: earlier mark power armour) added around the edge.

To achieve this, I went back to the trusty combination of the modelling knife and file. Using the knife, I carefully started to slice off the skull and the arrows on the curvature of the pad. Once these were reasonably flat and removed from the pad, I then proceeded to apply a careful filing of the pad. As can be seen, this is imprecise, as getting the exact curvature of the original sculpt is highly tricky with simply a file. That said, it is reasonably smooth and I think it will suffice perfectly for a 30k pad - especially when it gets painted up with a bit of battle damage / chipped paint coupled with a defaced legion symbol. 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Magos Reductor Calleb Decima

The FINAL entry in Betrayal is the only HQ choice for the Ordo Reductor mechanicum (but more are provided in the late Isstvan series of source books). In a nut shell, he's a loyalist mechanicum stuck with the Sons of Horus fleet, and so he naturally fell in with the loyalists on Isstvan III after being betrayed (his craft shot out of the air and crash landing on the surface of the planet).

As an HQ choice, he is actually rather reasonable. With a high toughness and 3 wounds, he's only worried about S10 and D class weapons to instant kill him.

He's not really a ranged specialist, so take some servo-automata to accompany him if you want to go down that route.

But he is going to be rather good in close combat. Particularly with servo-automata armed with anti-tank weapons (powerfists, las cutters and the like).

His ability of the Curse of the Omnissiah is terrific against vehicles. 2d6 haywire attacks are a serious cause for concern for most enemy tanks. Use this one shot attack wisely against targets you want to down. With sunder and tank hunter included in these attacks, he is a serious threat for any armour. And he has melta bombs to boot, just incase the haywire is not enough.

Place him amongst a largish bunch of Thallax and go do some tank hunting.

Overall, I regard him as a very reasonable HQ choice for a reasonable price. But with a very specific purpose on the battlefield.  Other mechanicum HQ choices in the other Horus Heresy books may provide a superior flexibility and build-ability, but Calleb Decima is not too bad overall in my opinion. And of course: very fluffy for Isstvan III.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Reaver Battle Titan

Many of the points I made about the Warhound Scout Titan are applicable here. Let me summarise the pertinent points:

(i) If you are taking titans, then your opponents might well be. You need to prepare for this through D class weapons.

(ii) Titans are not immobile weapons platforms. Move them to gain better lines of sight and to ensure any terminal explosion takes out enemy models and not your own.

(iii) Don't forget stomp attacks and tank shocks.

The principle difference here, however, is the option of a few different weapon systems and titan close combat weapons. These  latter items are 3 attacks as AP1 and D strength. Having one of these will certainly encourage you to move your titan and get inside the range of other titans weapons -- which can certainly be beneficial if they have minimum ranges.

Here are a few builds to consider.

Reaver Battle Titan with Apocalypse Launcher, Laser Blaster, Titan Close Combat Weapon
This is probably a base line Reaver. It contains a mix of D weapons, large blasts, and the close combat weapon to make sure you move the thing to take advantage of it.

Reaver Battle Titan with carapace-mounted vortex missile, 2 laser blasters
Very nasty turn 1 launch with the vortex missile to take out any close clumps of things you dislike, followed up by 6 D class shots.  And 6 more D class blast shots every turn thereafter. Nasty. Just nasty. Replace the vortex missile with a carapace mounted double-barrelled turbo laser destructor if you like, for sustained D shots every turn.

Reaver Battle Titan with carapace-mounted double-barrelled turbo laser destructor, 1 melta cannon, 1 volcano cannon.
Sit back. Blast away. Replace the volcano cannon with a laser baster to taste. But beware: this is one titan that you will forget to move around.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Warhound Scout Titan

Yes -- I really am reviewing titans. They're in Betrayal and the Horus Heresy, and therefore available as part of an army (with Lords of War) and therefore are a valid unit.

Let's be honest about something. If we're taking a titan, we're probably going to be opposed with titans. Therefore, I strongly would recommend that any titan is equipped with at least one strength D weapon to try to counter any enemy titans or super heavies. Admittedly, S10 is a close second, but its not quite the same.

The other thing to remember is that titans can move. Yep. Seriously. They have legs. They walk, jog and run. Remember to think about this: it is a mobile weapons platform after all.

But more than this: titans are also treated as gargantuan creatures in assault and can therefore make stomp attacks. These are at S10. And of course, they can tank shock anything less than a superheavy. Plus, it will generally take out anything in its vicinity when it goes down, so make sure that happens when your titan is deep in enemy territory for goodness sake. Move your titan!

Here are a few builds.  You'll notice that I'm not a fan of the inferno cannon -- there are superior options.

Warhound Scout Titan, 2 Vulcan Megabolters
Don't bother unless you know for certain there are no other super heavies or land raiders on the enemy side. Pumping out 30 AP3 shots every turn will rapidly decimate any space marine army otherwise. No fun for the opponent in this regard.

Warhound Scout Titan, 2 double-barrelled turbo laser destructors
Four lots of D weapons with a 5" blast every turn is serious business. This is the kind of titan that is ready for anything. Nothing in the game cannot be handled by it. Take it.

Warhound Scout Titan, 1 plasma blast gun, 1 double-barrelled turbo laser destructor
A more balanced titan (if such a thing exists! lol!), the massive blasts from the plasma gun is amazing at range and fun to play. Its also high strength. And the laser destructors are for the enemy titans to contend with.

Warhound Scout Titan, 1 plasma blast gun, 1 vulcan mega-bolter
A more "standard" configuration, but one this is frankly, not as effective as the two previous examples. Remember the maxim: if you're taking a titan, your opponents may well be as well. Go for a D class weapon.

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