Thursday, 12 April 2012

Blob Guard choices: Bane wolf and friends, their hot!

So in this next instalment of choices for blob guard lists, I'm going to look at hellhounds, bane wolves and Devil dogs.

First up is the Bane wolf, a decent enough tank who makes marines go away with its wound on a 2+ AP3 flame template, and on a 12 inch moving chassis it can semi get to where you need it in a hurry. The hull weapon you get a hull heavy bolter which can be changed to a heavy flamer or Melta... Now this is where I've read some differing opinions, some like to get another flamer template by taking the heavy flamer, but when you have to move 6 inches to get both flamers in range and fireable, the heavy bolter is free and adds some long range shots which can hopefully hurt AV10-11 if you're lucky but again that’s relying on a BS3 gun which then needs 5-6's for hurting vehicles, and may get 1-2 wounds on infantry if you roll semi better than the averages... not impressive sadly in my opinion but worth it if you want moe ranged shots without paying. 

The third option is the Melta, BS3 hurts it a little but it adds some serious anti tank if that thing hits (And a serious price for it!! 15 points is stupidly expensive feeling on the tank for a single BS3 shot) and being on a 12inch moving  tank doesn't hurt either to bring you up close and personal. This also makes the devil dog a dual role which can be quite handy to increase the amount of targets your enemy has to consider or suffer return fire from. 

In blob lists I'd personally find this hard to include, mainly due to its smaller template range (even with the nice movement distances) although it could find a place as a reserve and drive on and flame the enemy unit if you are facing a CC army closing on your lines. And if I was taking this I'd feel I have to take the Melta or heavy bolter to stop my normal heavy flamer wounds allocating nicely for the enemy if I fire both. 

In mech lists this could easily find a place for anti marine power to stop any power armour from reaching your lines, held back as a counter punch or moving forward making the enemy focus fire on it (Moving forward 14-18 inches depending and smoking in a good position really will make your opponent panic if his nice expensive units are nearby, and even better if you have 2 of them on the roam.

Next up is the Devil Dog, with a Melta cannon main gun which is a small blast at 24 inches it has potential, but it also has a downside... BS3... with the average scatter being 7 - its BS you are still scattering 4 inches and on rhinos and the likes that means you will mostly be off them.

Seeing how it comes with the Melta main gun, it feels stupid not to dual role it with the heavy flamer if you want the best of both worlds, or give it the hull Melta to increase its anti tank potential. The heavy bolter I consider not worth it at all for this chassis due to the option for better anti infantry and better anti tank.

In blob lists this tank could again be a good solid anti tank unit with the hull Melta as I’d say in blob lists I have enough anti infantry fire via lasguns and then power weapons. The question though is is it worth its 120 (Or 135 with hull Melta) points over other infantry related upgrades? Now while I like the tank this makes it a hard choice, it’s a single AV12 fast tank in a sea of men, if you reserve it then you might not get its value, unless you get a good roll and it makes the enemy panic and avoid your table edge or get caught and fragged by it coming on... but that’s points off the table or that could be ruined in 1 shot... in a blob the meltas and heavy weapons are safe and secure... and those points could be another squad of infantry wound allocating for them plus more PW attacks, and another meltabomb... though enough choice to make and seems down to preference.

In a mech list I don't think this is worth it sadly, Melta vets and other units can do the anti tank role perfectly. Thus it sadly I not s required with its Melta for the price... heck for 135 I can get a CCS with 3 Meltaguns in a chimera with hull flamer... that’s much more likely with BID to blow a tank up for me, and the chimera can flame the contents if moved only 6 inches... 

Finally the Hellhound... and i love it! Credit given where it is due to Pug for this love... I'd never used one and after querying with him about the one he runs he gave it good reviews, and after extensive testing I can see why! a (As usual) 12 inch move with a very sexy main gun S6 AP4 heavy flamer which gets up to 12 inches before being placed and can be pointed any direction form the end of the line as long as the big end is further for the tank than the smaller end makes for some really good template positioning, as well as a safety margin for allowing your tank to remain out of charge range of enemy models. 

Its proved its worth to me over and over, both against Xenos who suffer vs. its AP4 and S3 usually instant deathing the characters if T3... 2 of these single handily made sure in my game 5 of Arkham Vs Rowan I could only draw at worst flaming away his troops in a coupld of blasts. Vs Nathan's Horde orks in Lisburn league they dismantled so many boys before one being destroyed they more than covered their costs, and against Shane's Eldar one removed a banshee squad, a guardian squad with meltas closing on my lines and some jet bkes to help me keep his numbers in check...

But can they find a place in Blob lists... sadly not imo... while one of these coming on and flaming an enemy unit could be useful, you don't need anti infantry as I keep saying... it would be handy due to the ignore cover I accept that, but the points spent are a lot when I need anti tank in my lists. 

In a mech list? ....Oh hell yes... this thing adds so much anti infantry it is unreal, and I’ve taken to running mine cheaply with a heavy flamer... the xenos still don’t get their saves and unless I'm trying to ID a T3 char they will burn even better. Rumbling up to a squad after smoking 6 odd inches away to unleash 2 flamers on the unit really can thin them or make them disappear all together. he heavy bolter is not an option imo, light unreliable anti tank and the Melta adds more points to a unit which vs. Xenos hordes will already be focused. 

Keep it clean with dual templates is my advice and let the enemy burn.

With all three I don’t bother with camo nets... 20 points is stupidly expensive... it should be 10 a tank at most. Smoke launchers are sometimes bought if I think I need them, but at 5 points a pop they are expensive, and I usually find myself using cover instead... 5 points for 1 turn of hoping to pass cover is not worth it sometimes... 

Dozer blades... expensive enough on an army which doesn’t want to move (Paraphrasing Pug... but it is very true) is indeed stupid... 5 points a time should be the norm to encourage players to take them... I do but only on my hellhounds to ensure they don't break down on terrain when going for flames. 

Over all 3 very fun units which have their roles and can be used for various fillers in most lists.


  1. I think you may be dismissing the value of the blast melta a little too quickly. More important to note than the average scatter distance is that when up to 1" (I think that is safe on most vehicles) of deviation is acceptable it hits 50% of the time, just like it was a non blast weapon. Against rhinos near misses are pretty good too, since 4+2d6 still has a 58% chance of glancing.

  2. I do accept I've slightly glossed over the melta blast, but relying on it hitting 50% of the time just wasn't high enough for me when I can have other units doing the job on a more reliable level. While the Multimelta has a longer range and melta range, Melta Vets or the heavy support options can do this role better.

    Melta vets can race forward in chimeras hop out and if you have Bring it down on them will usually always pen the tank twice or all three times. I do accept the 12inch move and 12inches of double dice and a further 12 inches of normal S8 melta is nice, but soncidering most armies have vets or the likes they should be dotted around the place coering the advances, so this is slightly unneeded.

    Or manticores or other s10 guns can crack things form afar (Even Ordanance which allows the 2D6 pick highest)...

    While it is a nice tank, I feel its just shadowed in the role it tries to do... maybe if it ws Twinlinked I'd use it more :(

  3. " on an army which doesn’t want to move "
    A reason for the decline of guard in the Irish tournament scene. We've no guard players that play mobile (mech, I don't count wandering little men) forces. To combat things like wolf scouts most guard players tend to use a static line of infantry to wrap stuff up, making them even less mobile. If I had any love for the guard models or background (lulz, fluff) I'd do it, but i perfer dreadnoughts, lots and lots of dreadnoughts....