Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Fire in the Sky, Nowhere to Run

I got my StormHawk built up, and even tho it was still unpainted, took it over to a buddy's place for a Game. We wanted to give the DftS Rules a solid go, so I also brought along a Wing of two StormTalons, and he had the Dark Eldar Formation.

I've seen people talking about the Dogfight Rules as just a d3 Rolloff, but I think Rock/Paper/Scissors is the better comparison. I won both Dogfights handily, despite the RazorWings outclassing my StormHawk in the relevant stats, because there are differences in the options that influence which you'll go for. They're very minor, so it's more about figuring out how deeply your Opponent is thinking about it than any kind of decision-making that actually makes sense from an aerial combat point of view, but they are there. I wish they'd gone a bit more in depth, even tho that sort of analysis is actually something I'm pretty good at. But it's not just random.

The Attack Patterns certainly do buff all of the Flyers in their area of competency, but that doesn't change the fact that they've all been nerfed pretty hard outside of their area of competency. Fighters got off easiest, but they're fairly rare (and even more so in terms of what actually gets used), and the most common Flyers are all Attack Flyers, that lost the ability to have Skyfire, meaning that almost all Factions now have substantially worse access to it, and some have none at all. Further, a lot of the Flyers that were seen were kind of borderline in their inclusion, and are now likely to show up a lot less.

Honestly, as far as I can tell, this only really buffs one strategy: Massive Alpha Strike+Flyers. For pretty much everyone else, the better option is usually to not take Flyers at all. If you're up against an Alpha Strike Army without Flyers, do the Reserves thing. Up against an Army with Flyers, but not a big Alpha Strike, just start everything on the table, so you don't care about the Reserves Manipulation. If you do run into an Alpha Strike+Flyers list, hope you brought a VSG.

OK, that got longer than I'd planned. Gonna keep this next part quick. Or at least try to :P

The StormHawk, for all the failings of the Supplement it appears in, is a pretty great kit, and a good Flyer on the table.
It's clearly related to the StormTalon, but it's also its own thing, significantly more of a difference than, say, a Razorback and a Predator. Some cool changes on the bottom, too, to show its lack of Hover capability and greater thrust:
I've got it set up so I can swap in every possible option. Didn't even need magnets. All the joins are in places where it's ridiculously easy to stick a tiny bit of blu-tac in there, and it's completely unnoticeable. They actually nearly all pressure-fit, even without the blu-tac.

That said, if you do want to bust out the magnets, I'd wager you could set this up so that everything but the cockpit could come off and swap for other parts to make it also work as a StormTalon. Those wings and engines are all one block that would easily swap out for the engine pods on the Talon. You'd need magnets in the sides for those, in the weapons pods, and in the nose for front gun/Assault Cannon turret. The Engine/Wing/Assault Cannon parts are all different for the two builds, so you don't have to worry about getting those to switch. A couple more magnetization points if you care about the view from the bottom, and maybe one more for the Halo Launcher/Sensors, but I probably wouldn't bother with those. The sticker, really, is the cockpit. That's chunked right in the middle there, and I don't see anything even approaching an easy way to make it swappable.

Great kit, tho, I'm definitely going to be picking up another so I can run the Formation with two of them and two Talons. I'll probably try to magnetize that one, and toss some pics up here. Until then, y'all have a good one, y'hear!


  1. I was excited when I heard about Death from the Skies 2.0, before the specifics came out. Made me sad GW didn't go with more on-the-table additions like the Attack Formations. The StormHawk is a pretty cool kit, though, if I played Marines I'd be tempted to get one.

    1. Yeah, A grade concept, C-D for execution. Could have been something really cool, but ended up pretty much meh.