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Warhammer 40K Retro: Birth of the Whirlwind

3 Minute Read
Jan 14

Today gamers we are headed back to 1989 to the birth of the badass Whirlwind. You won’t believe its model!

Today we step back to September 1989 and White Dwarf 117. It was a jam packed issue with everything from Codex Titanicus, to the Wartrakk Skorcha, to Close Assault Terminators. But we are here to look upon a miracle. This issue gave us the Whirlwind. Not a model mind you. Back then GW would often throw out rules and give you instructions on how to convert the model yourselves out of their existing kits.

There was only the Rhino kit to base the Whirlwind off of, but that just part of the hobbyist challenge.

The Rules

Ahh I LOVE a good complex template. The original Whirlwind had a 6-72″ range, was S8 and used that cool 4 part “ripple fire” template that would string out the hits across a tight area, shared with the Thudd Gun. The distribution of the scatter directions on templates 2, 3 and 4 kept the barrage from folding back on itself and gave you a satisfying result most of the time.

Also note that the Whirlwind could be used by BOTH the Space Marines and Imperial Guard army.

The Model

Now onto how to build one of these bad boys for your army:


Yes, you used bits from the Rhino sprue, and the missile barrels are made from a 40×40 square WFB base. So retro cool! Last but not least, don’t forget the original Whirlwind logo. You could paint up one of those on your current Whirlwinds for that little bit of 40K nostalgia.

Loving it!

~Anyone have any sightings of these ancient primogenitors of the Whirlwind line?


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