Monday, July 2, 2012

6th Edition Lone Wolf Tactic: "Sick Em Boy!"

So, I have been right there with all of you reading through the 6th Edition rulebook. I have to admit that the twilight of 5th had me really bummed out, for several reasons. But all of that is behind us now, it's a brave new world, and the fun of exploring and discovering a new edition has me excited along with the rest of you.

Now, I have had the opportunity to get in two games so far. I played a mixed Vanilla Marines/Grey Knights force using a variety of my model collection including my Space Marine bikes. I have to say, I absolutely LOVE the ally rules. They add so many options, and honestly resolve so many of the dilemmas faced by a competitive hobbyist like myself. I enjoy exploring multiple codices, but I also enjoy having my shit painted. Unless I paint every single unit in the same scheme (not a bad route, really), I have to make tough decisions about which armies my models go into.

Now, I can use my Space Wolves with my Grey Knights. My Grey Knights with my Biker Marines. The sky is the limit.

If you an Imperial, that is.

Even in 6th Edition, the Imperial bias is pretty obvious. The range of options available to the Boyz in Blue in terms of alliances, psyker options, Flyers and anti-Flyers is pretty obvious. I was dissapointed in the FAQs, to be frank, didn't provide the level of modification to the codices that I expected.

But, we adjust. I'm still thinking about how I want to run my Nids, but in the meanwhile I have been giving some thought to my Loganwing.

Now, Lone Wolves were always one of my favorite units. They are a unit who's rules fit their fluff and character in a truly elegant and awesome way. They are, in a word, badass.

Their main weaknesses have ALWAYS been their difficulty in hitting fast-moving vehicles, and their slow speed/low threat range.

Well, boys and girls (heh, did anyone else notice the unicorn on page ix... who does GW think we are, chumps? Unicorns aren't real!), 6th edition has brought us some changes that I think we are going to like.

One: Feel No Pain is a little lower, but probably better for Lone Wolves. Yes, you are slightly more vulnerable to small arms fire. But you have Eternal Warrior and as I read it will get to make a 3++ followed by a 5+++ all day long. That should inconvenience Power Fists, Dreadnoughts and the like.

You hit vehicles now. Easily.

No more hoping your shooting gets an immobilized result so your Lone Wolves can get the kill. Now that we're hitting moving vehicles on a 3+, anything should be afraid to get close.

But how close should they be afraid to get, anyways?

This is where we get a bit tricky. I'm PRETTY sure that Fenrisien Wolves will dramatically extend the Lone Wolves threat range and make them generally a devastating mid-field controller.

So, the new Movement rules have changed since 5th edition. Now, instead of moving at the speed of the slowest model in the unit, each model can move up to their full movement so long as they remain in unit coherency. This is a BIG change. I was chatting with Stelek about this earlier today, and he mistakenly believed it was still "slowest model in the unit," so I went home and double checked (Page 10) and it's not. He should be very excited about exploring this method for slingshotting IC's using Jump Pack Marines, or vice versa. Interesting stuff.

So, the Lone Wolf buys his two Fenrisien Wolf pets. He runs directly towards the enemy (duh). His wolves stay tucked in closely behind him, to avoid their getting shot up by small arms fire. Beefcake takes the hits for the team (this is a situation specific thing, ofc. If you think it's better for your wolves to suck up some Lascannon shots... let them lead the way, but just know that anyone with a brain will just gun them down with bolters first).

So there you are, running forward with your wolves behind you. You identify a target, let's say a vehicle. You move your Terminator directly towards the target, then move the next wolf up, 2 inches in front of the Terminator, directly towards the target. Now, I was going to say to move the NEXT wolf up 2" in front of that, citing the codex rule that the 2" from characters only apply to characters... but I thought to check the rule book and indeed in 6th Lone Wolves are characters, so we can't stretch that Conga line out TOO far...

Anyways, that also means you can still shrug off Lascannons onto your wolves even if they are behind you on a LoS roll. The more you know...

Anyways, declare your charge, roll your distance, and go! You are within 2" of your Fenrisien Wolves, so you can swing as long as they don't die. But the good news is, even if they die, you still get your 3" pile in move which will likely bring you into contact (because the enemy has probably counter-attacked towards you at initiative... higher than 1). And now you are stuck in, because... you are awesome and probably won't die.

Against vehicles, you aren't going to lose the wolf. So you basically get a free 4" of charge range, with no risk, giving you 6 plus 4 plus 2d6 = 12 - 22 inches charge threat (edited: I double counted the movement before).

Conceptually, I think of this as your Lone Wolf having his wolves "sick" the target, slowing it down while he comes up to beat its ass. Pretty awesome.

If I've missed something basic, feel free to point it out. But this seems legit, and adding extra range is a very good thing.

This can also be used to ensure that you can charge into terrain without having to roll for it. By leaving your Terminator JUST outside of 6" from the target, and letting the dogs lead the way (they ignore terrain, so the unit will not have to roll for it). 

Yeah. Welcome to the new edition baby.