Thursday, September 22, 2016

Horus Heresy Review: Shattered Legions

Background.
A shattered legions force is one that is drawn from two or more distinct legions in the aftermath of various events of the Horus Heresy. The most cited example of a shattered legion force is that of the Salamanders, Iron Hands and Raven Guard following the Isstvan V campaign and represents the survivors banding together to exact revenge on the traitors. Other less obvious ones might be Alpha Legion working with almost any other loyalist element to bring about victory for the loyalists; certain elements of the White Scars getting together with other traitors following the internal schism in the White Scars, World Eaters and Word Bearers left behind after the Shadow Crusade, Lutherian Dark Angels plus others, and the list goes on and on.

Strengths.
The whole is greater than the sum. Literally, this rule means everyone in the army plays nice -- they're sworn brothers. So long as the warlord lives.

Beyond this (which, admittedly is just a nice way of having a coherent force), they can have access to legion specific rites of war that will apply to everyone in this army, and have their rules modified. For example, the Night Lords will no longer suffer from the Seeds of Dissent special rule, but can apply the night vision rule to all units in the entire army which is nice. Its the best of all worlds really!

Weaknesses.
The most obvious thing to state about Shattered Legions is that playing them requires the agreement of both players. This makes me a bit sad, but I can see why the designers wanted it that way since there's got to be some broken combinations in there! (or at minimum: very powerful ones! I'm looking at the Death Guard for that personally!).

Beyond this, there is a price of redemption: units can never be denial units. Oh well. Better go for the alpha strike then and take as many heads as possible!

Rites of War.
There are two specific listed rites of war for shattered legions: After Isstvan (for the RG, IH and Salamanders) and the Hunter-Killer mission (for the EC charged with tracking down survivors). The former is reasonably nice (and fluffy), but the latter leaves a bit to be desired as there's little positives going for it.

Overall.
The Shattered Legions forces are a great way to expand a collection. They can be used as either traitor or loyalist, and feature any unit from any legion (plus generic ones). There's little not to like here and I could certainly be tempted to go down that route for some fun games.

I'd just advise avoiding having Death Guard as the warlord … because it can be a bit over-powering! Unless you're facing eldar. In which case: go right ahead. 

3 comments:

Zzzzzz said...

I'd be torn between these and blackshields. A shattered legion force could be quite colourful, but blackshields could, technically, be even more diverse. Choices, choices, choices.

And of course, either with Knight Errant allies (I have a lovely Garro to lead my 30K force....)

Rob Hill said...

I personally love the shattered legion rules as a way to fluffily represent the loyalist facions of traitor legions purged on Istvann III.

I've been planning such a force for some time but I just can't decide on how to put it all together.

Great rules though :)

jabberjabber said...

I really like the Shattered Legions. I can see why you'd be torn between this and the Blackshields though -- they've both got a lot going for them! And the rules a top notch, as we've come to expect from these FW publications :)

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