Tuesday, 16 February 2016

Iron Fists revamp. Stop! Hammer time!

The hobby butterfly itchy foot syndrome strikes again! Right people, I came to the decision yesterday that I'm going to have another revamp of my Iron Fists space marines.

The collection is sprawling quite extensively and I decided that rather than have one massive army with lots of different playing styles, I'd instead consolidate the collection into one distinct playing style and re-start a second marine army to build myself an alternative styled army.

What that means is that I'll be selling off quite a bit of my existing collection (see list at the bottom if you're interested in buying any of what I've got) and then buying some nice shiny new plastic toys to set up a second army.

But why? And how am I going about it, I hear you ask (no, really, I do hear you ask don't I?)

Back in 2013 when I started my last big revamp of my marine collection, I decided to focus a lot of effort onto getting a big bike contingent completed. As you can see from the pic above, I've definitely got the basis of that together now, with only my scout bikes left to paint (and possibly a librarian if I can convert one up easily enough).

I always used them with the Imperial Fists chapter tactics however as these fitted more comfortably with the devastator centurions I'd got as a key squad in the army.

When the Kauyon campaign book was released recently however, White Scars got lots of nice new formations etc to go with it, and when I was looking at these the other day I realised I had basically all the components to make a really strong list using those formations within my collection.

So, first things first, how can I justify the Iron Fists (essentially an Imperial Fists successor chapter) using White Scars chapter tactics? Simple, my collection will be a specific force from the chapter, the mounted company - with all their training and equipment being dedicated to rapid strike tactics.

That means I'm going to be using their new Scarblade Detachment, with a Hunting Force as the Core formation, and bringing with them a Speartip Strike and a Stormbringer Squadron as backup. That left me with one major problem. I've just finished painting two Storm Talons, and not only do I love the models I'm also very fond of their rules! Step in the Raven Guard's 'Raptor Wing' as a separate formation outside of the Scarblade Detachment. This is a pair of Storm Talons with a Land Speeder, so perfectly sized for what I'm looking to do (and rather handily, the flyers always arrive on turn 2, so I don't have to bother with dodgy reserve rolls).

I'll need to pick up a Land Speeder Storm and a normal Land Speeder to round out the collection, along with a  pair of attack bikes I've already got dibs on from a friend, but that's small beans really.

What does this mean then?
The core of my list will be the hunting force, comprising my captain on bike with the hunter's eye and the scimitar of the Great Khan.
Chaplain on Bike
Command Squad on bikes with apothecary, banner of the eagle, two power swords and two power axes
Attack bike squad, with 2 multi-melta attack bikes
Melta bike squad, with 2 meltaguns and combi melta, plus attack bike with multi melta
5-man bike squad with 2 plasma guns and combi-plasma
Scout Bike Squad, with 7 bikers including 2 with grenade launchers

Added to that will be a speartip strike to suppress the enemy, comprising
Landspeeder with multi melta and typhoon missile launcher
5-man bike squad with 2 grav guns and combi-grav
Standard Bike Squad, with 3 bikers and heavy bolter attack bike

And a Stormbringer Squadron, to boost my firepower and give me a little infiltrating obsec
Landspeeder with 2 heavy flamers
Landspeeder storm with cerberus launcher and heavy flamer
5-man Scout Squad with sniper rifles and camo cloaks

and finally, outside the Scarblade detachment comes the Raptor Wing
Landspeeder with Multi Melta and Typhoon Missile Launcher
2 Storm Talons with twin-linked Assault Cannons and Typhoon Missile Launchers.

The key things here in terms of gameplay are that the captain starts out with one of the normal bike squads to allow the Hunter's Eye to give them ignores cover. He'll then probably switch over to the Command Squad in time for a nice charge into something fairly meaty. They're not overly blessed with AP2 but the Chaplain's re-rolls will help and to be honest if the rest of my army can't solve the AP2 riddle then I deserve to lose.

The Speartip Strike can keep nasty enemy units pinned down, with pinning and a -2 to their leadership test if all three units fire at the same target, so they can definitely keep heads down (the alternative is a normal leadership test that if failed forces the target to move straight towards them, which is equally useful, but less likely to work as there's no leadership modifier).

The scout squad isn't likely to achieve much with their shooting, but are too small to warrant much attention from most things, and with infiltrate they'll be good for grabbing objectives early in games. The storm and land speeder from that formation will be pretty much dedicated anti-infantry support with a trio of heavy flamers and the cerberus launcher.

This whole army (except the raptor wing) will then gain re-rolls to its hit and run attempts, extra speed when turbo-boosting or going flat out, and re-rolls to hammer of wrath wounds if I charge from far enough away, which given the banner of the eagle grants fleet will be more likely!

The raptor wing is in there to provide me with anti-air, and the guaranteed arrival of the storm talons on turn 2 is fantastic. The fact that the landspeeder can designate a unit against which the gunships can either re-roll to wound or re-roll armour pens is just gravy!

So what am I then going to do with the other army?

This one will be designed around the imperial fists chapter tactics, and will be intended to be a real 'in your face' list using lots of drop pods for tactical deployment and some tough units with as much firepower as the marine book can muster to really put the pressure on opponents early on in games.

This collection will also be built completely from new models, I'm not going to reserve any of my current models to use with this list, and I'm looking to develop a really characterful, dark themed colour scheme for them - I did a bit of research last night using my marine reference books and I've got an idea of something along these lines.

So it's a really dark Blue (the one shown above is the old regal blue, but I'll be using one of the new GW paints for this, so whatever looks best), which I'll look to highlight up around the hard edges, then with a flat stone kind of colour on the pads, trim etc. Company number will have to go on the knee pad, as I tried codex company colours on the shoulder pad rims and they just didn't look right. I may look to try and marble the stone colour to really make the scheme pop a bit, then with a pale brass style aquila on the chest plate. The helmet lenses will be a deep red to really bring out yet more brooding menace. Guns I'll probably look to do as a mixture of brass and steel to tie the scheme to the aquila.

I've wanted an Imperial Knight for ages, so this will be the army where he's going to fit, and I'll be painting him up to match their colour scheme regardless of house colours. I've already got a name planned out for them - the Dusk Knights, with the list looking something like this at present. It may be subject to significant change, but this is my early thinking!

Chapter Master with Burning Blade and Shield Eternal, plus a Jump Pack

5-man Sternguard Veteran Squad in a Drop Pod, with 2 Meltaguns and 3 Combi Meltas
5-man Vanguard Veteran Squad with Jump Packs, 2 Power Axes, 2 Power Sword and Storm Shields, and the Sergeant with a Power Fist and Lightning Claw.

10-man Tactical Squad in a Drop Pod with Combi-grav, Grav Gun and Grav Cannon with amp
10-man Tactical Squad in a Drop Pod with Heavy Bolter and Flamer

1 Drop Pod

Centurion Devastator Squad with Grav Cannons and Grav Amps
Thunderfire Cannon

Knight Warden, with Avenger Gatling Cannon, Meltagun, Thunderstrike Gauntlet and Twin Icarus Autocannon

That's an 1850pt list, but with the Knight in there I've got plenty of space for alternatives in games where I don't want to use him (I'd probably look to replace him with a couple of Ironclad dreads or similar).

What this does mean of course is that my 5000pt game I'd got down as a resolution this year may have to be a mixed force rather than the solo list I was intending, but that's not really a problem - the key will be getting it all assembled and painted.

So, here's the list of models I'm going to be getting rid of - contact me using the blog address if you want any of them, I'm ideally looking for about 50% GW retail.

3 Full 10-man Tactical Squads on 25mm bases
Squad 1 - Plasma Gun, Plasma Cannon, includes an 11th member with a sergeant combi-plasma (painted)
Squad 2 - Melta Gun, Multi Melta, includes an 11th member with a sergeant combi-melta (painted)
Squad 3 - Flamer, Missile Launcher (ML unpainted)

3 Devastator Centurions. Armed with Lascannons and Missile Launchers (magnetised). Can be supplied with alternative weapon systems if needed, including the grav cannons and amps. (painted, £25)

4 Terminator Squads
5-man Tactical with magnetised assault cannon, 6th model has cyclone missile launcher (painted)
5-man Tactical with magnetised assault cannon, 6th model has cyclone missile launcher (painted)
5-man Assault with Lightning Claws (unpainted)
5-man Assault with Thunder Hammers and Storm Shields (unpainted)

1 Stalker (painted) - optional parts for hunter could be included.
Land Raider redeemer - unpainted, converted to include techmarine with plasma pistol out of one hatch, storm shields on side panels and sanguinary guard wings on flamestorm cannon guards.

1 Dreadnought with multi melta (from starter set) (part painted)
1 Ironclad dreadnought with two heavy flamers and two hunter killer missiles. (painted)

30 assault marines in various stages of paint application - some metal/plastic models and some of the old assault veterans

1 10-man sternguard squad with two heavy flamers and combi flamer (painted)

Message me if you're interested in any of this, and I can email pictures. I'll keep the post updated with any models that have been reserved.

Till next time,