Hi all , the new DE release wave has got the old writing juices going once again, very excited about destroying the cattle races with airstrikes. As I have now covered the troops section we are into fast attack.
Hellions , sci fi anime punks on bladed jet propelled hover boards waving a double ended… glaive, sounds pretty cool to me and I actually really like the kit, lets say it grew on me. I have been regularly running a group of 15 for months now so feel I can offer a solid review . They sit firmly in the DO want camp for me , they can do some serious heavy lifting and have flat out won me games. Im not convinced they are especially great without the Baron but lets start by discussing what you do get as standard.
16 points a model is quite a high ask for a t3 model with toilet paper for armour, it’s a unit that is very reliant on skillful use to get the most from, one time I really cocked up with them and they just vanished . Can only blame myself for that really DE is not an army that forgives your blunders.
The stat line is little to write home about really , the I6 was fantastic til GK came out…I think the max unit size of 20 is a very good thing too, just bear in mind they are pretty pricey , though 20 will give you 40 poison shots with an effective 30″ range which they can follow with 60 str 4 attacks on the charge, pure torrent FTW (drugs will make this even uglier)
Basic kit is little to talk about really , they get the standard DE 5+ save a jump pack equivalent and a funky weapon that counts as 2 hand weps and gives them +1 str, they are utterly lethal to poorly armoured foes and anything T5 or more should fear the splinter pods , the splinter pods bear mention as they are an 18″ range assault 2 poisoned gun, pure class my friends, especially en masse.
Special Rules- Fleet , DE staple but helps these guys get around pretty damn fast , though it’s always a toss up with firing the splinter pods , ideally you get into range so you can both fire and assault, assuming the unit is vaguely intact not many things can pass THAT many saves.
Night vision – Pfft…
Power from pain – FNP offers great value here due tothe fairly high model cost , if you can get them Furious charge reasonably early on you will have a unit with a str of 5 on the charge ,6 is possible?! mine have tin-opened their fair share of transports, not to mention they can then make opponents take ever increasingly ridiculous amount of saves, fearless is ok , as long as we are not loosing the combat anyway .
Hit and Run – Pure win , I have said it before and said it again, my favorite USR by a landslide. and there is shenanigans aplenty to be had here , ultimately getting more opportunities to use the splinter pods and more charges after is just hilarious It also means they become a very fast unit once they hit combat and you can use H&R to get all over the place using combats to slingshot yourself elsewhere, H&R +move + fleet + assault = a long way.
Combat drugs – Oh yes , these can really help out alot , anything but a one is useful when coupled with their volume of attacks, hitting mostly on threes ? yes please ! str 5 out of the gate ? hell yeah ! re-roll wounds -always always good , 15 -20 man unit with I6 outputting 60-80 attacks on the charge, Fuck. Yes. Coming off the blocks with FNP is also all the flavours of the awesome rainbow when you have the potential for 3+ cover saves too…
Helliarch- This guy is worth taking IF you are not taking the Baron, the Jump to LD9 is worth the 10 points alone , his phantasm launcher is worth considering but it’s an expensive upgrade, if you are doing things right the defensive grenades almost never come into play , though you may get some D’oh moments if you lack assault grenades.
He gets some weapon options too, I like Venom Blades and It’s not a bad choice ,but I prefer to stick with the standard weapon as the extra str 5-6 comes in handy later if you need to clean up some tins.
Stunclaw- Hilarity to be had with this, I have found it to be largely circumstantial , however the few times I have used it has been darkly amusing, there was this Rune priest who had a rough introduction to the forbidden art of Splat-Fu…
The power wep is, c h e a p , I have not used it thus far , not awful not great, I don’t find Hellions really need it and as usual the Agoniser is over priced junk in this dex.
Overall I feel you could do worse than include a unit as a single fast attack choice, they do conflict with the only source of melta in the army ,frankly I think you are asking for trouble if you do not include at least two units of reavers and/or scourges so one unit is realistic in my estimation, also it’s worth mentioning that they can be lots of fun.
Ok, so this is where they really start to sing. I tend to think of The Baron as a unit upgrade in the truest sense of the term, by himself he’s a little pathetic , the only thing really does for the unit physically is allow them to be a bit more threatening to armour with his 5 str 6-7 attacks on the charge, he can open some tins for ya.
Tha major things he offers are making them TROOPS , freeing up some more FA if you need it (you do) and making them score. In fact he comes with a ream of shit to pimp the unit, he’s a measly 105 points and packs a phantasm launcher , gives you a +1 to the first turn decider roll AND gives his hellion unit stealth also. A 3+ save with the possibility of FNP makes them a real PITA to deal with, people don’t expect space elves to be that hard to take down. As if that was not enough his unit can re roll dangerous terrain tests and any dice for their H&R, a unit of Hellions with the Baron is L££T.
He does also come with a shadow field which means he ‘can’ be used to soak some hits if the unit is depleted or as a break off tarpit in a pinch.My only gripe is that he does not have or benefit from combat droogs for no readily apparent reason , shit I’d happily go up to 115 points to have him with those …
So without the Baron they are pretty good in the right hands and worth a go. But With him they become a well oiled killing machine, no longer having to fear DT and actually getting a great save in the process is W1N , their fast, their shooty, and they hit like a brick in a sock.
The art of using them is partially getting them over the table relatively intact so you get enough numbers when you hit , subsequently they are a great candidate for WWP delivery.
If you do decide to pick up a unit just be patient and take the time to learn how to use them and they will reward your efforts.
Next week: It’s a biggie , Retro Review of the much loved/spammed Fire Dragons Aspect , see ya then.