|CoolMiniOrNot - HellDuck|
Having umm'ed and ahh'ed for, I don't know, 6 months or so, I finally made up my mind what direction I want to take my Wolves+allies in, and the winner is - Imperial Guard! Thought long and hard about GK, Tau, and even moving to GK+Necrons. I was shakey about Forge World too for a number of reasons, but it is now decided, models have been ordered and are on their way!
So this is my list I'm currently looking at building for the Brighton Singles in July, at 1650pts. This also (currently, as they keep changing) meets all the comp rules too (although I would still run this list without the comp requirements). I have no hope of getting all the soft scores, but at least I will be well progressed for the 40kUK GT in October...
1650pts Space Wolves and Imperial Guard
100pts Rune Priest, Jaws, Living Lightning (Warlord)
150pts Company Command Squad, Chimera (Heavy Flamer), 3 plasma guns
4x 125pts 5 Grey Hunters, Razorback (Heavy Bolter), plasma gun
2x 120pts 5 Grey Hunters, Razorback (Heavy Bolter), melta gun
150pts Platoon; Platoon Command Squad, 4 flamers; 2x Infantry Squads (no upgrades)
2x 140pts 4 Hyperios Missile Launchers (Forge World)
130pts Vendetta (PCS goes here)
100pts 2 Heavy Quad Launchers (Forge World)
The RP will usually sit with the Quad's, making the most of Prescience and maybe the ignores cover power. This gives him effective toughness 7 due to the artillery rules, with 10 wounds to get through before he gets hit from direct fire (2x2 artillery, 6 crew). The idea is to hide this unit out of sight and pelt anti-infantry barrages at the enemy's backfield and densely packed formations. 2x4 S5 blasts with either re-rolls to hit or maybe ignores cover is very nice. I've been missing some kind of blast weapon when playing with SW+GK, and the Quads should force the enemy to spread out and even then they can't hide entirely thanks to the barrage rule.
The PCS will ride in the vendetta, and if they survive they can drop on a backfield objective and barbeque enemy troops. The vendetta shoots other fliers, vehicles and big gribblies until it gets shot down.
Further anti-air is provided by the two Hyperios units. These will probably sit on the flanks to try to get around any high midfield cover for enemy fliers, and unload their skyfire and interceptor krak missiles as soon as they are able. They also provide BS3 twin-linked goodness to try and get first blood at range, another thing my SW+GK combo struggles with.
The bare bones infantry squads reserve, come in and hit the dirt if they get shot at, boldly trying to hide out of line of sight as much as possible. I haven't, initially, given these guys any upgrades as their primary purpose is to score my rear objectives. If I'm shooting something, say with an autocannon, then I can get shot back, and these guys are too valuable to die/run off the board. I can always stick the RP in and blob up, but this is not my intention to start with. The CCS can also issue orders to rally these guys if they run, but the chances are they will be off the board before I get a chance to do so!
Finally there is the midfield element of the army, the MSU razor hunters and the plasma CCS in the chimera. These guys are to provide me with a decent force to push into the centre of the board (melta hunters first, plasma hunters next then CCS bringing up the rear). They can keep pushing forward if required or fall back to assist with objective taking, and have good mobility and a reasonable range of anti-infantry (from GEQ to TEQ) and anti-tank/MC thanks to the weapon load outs. I've also found that in numbers the razorbacks can offer a threat to AV10 rear armour fliers and also help a lot against helldrakes by offering my hunters somewhere to temporarily hide. An alternative, although probably rare, location for my RP is to join the hunters and try to Jaws a low initiative warlord or MC (say tervigons).
The CCS can give orders to itself for re-rolls to hit tanks/MCs, force re-rolls on enemy cover saves (nice with that much plasma), and can even issue orders to the quads or infantry if appropriate. I might cast prescience on them too, if in range and a priority rapid fire target shows up.
So overall that gives me 30 mobile scoring MEQs, 25 scoring GEQs (5 late game rear objective grabbers, 20 backfielders), and a fair range of close, mid and long range firepower to tackle infantry, vehicle/MC and flier targets, including some templates and barrage blasts. I have a reasonable change to take first blood and have a few good places to protect my warlord if required, whilst still contributing to the battle (something that can be a bit hit or miss with the SW+GK lists I've been running as prescience isn't great on small squads and getting out to shoot usually means getting killed the next turn!).
For 1850pts, I'd add 3x1 lascannon sabre defense platforms (again Forge World with interceptor and skyfire) and an aegis line for additional anti-tank/air, a few extra scoring bodies and some very good cheap cover for my backfield force.
It's taken me an age to find a balanced all-comers list with Wolves as primary. I wasn't kidding when I said it's taken me 6 months! The major problem was finding decent anti-air. The answer was Forge World (I don't think a vendetta squadron is a great use of points for this ally combo), but I wasn't comfortable initially as not all tournaments use FW and FW themselves have been known to suddenly change their rules without warning. However, the tournaments I'm interested in both short and long term (40KUK GT, Brighton, Walberton and in time Caledonian) traditionally allow Forge World. It also helped when I worked out how to scratch build 12 hyperios launchers for under £30 (hobby article to come)!
I think this list has the tools to take on most other armies and have a fighting chance. There are no threats that I think I don't have some sort of answer for, and I have most aspects in duplicate for some (limited) redundancy. I also have a reasonable amount of twin-linking or re-rolls available to help ease out the dice. It's still weaker against AV13/14 than I'd like (better at 1850pts), and any army focusing heavily on one aspect (e.g. mass heavy armour, hoards, large air force) will be a struggle. However, I'd prefer to play with a balanced list than overload one aspect and play paper/scissors/stone.
So any thoughts on the list? Any advice from IG veterans welcome!