Let’s talk about the new Space Wolf supplement. It’s good – very, very good.
Space Wolves were the very first army I played in Warhammer 40K back in 2000 (has it been 20 years already?). While I haven’t actively played them in a long time, they’ve still got a place in my heart and I’m happy when they do well. So I was pretty interested to see what the new codex supplement had in store for them. Overall it’s a pretty dang cool book, with some powerful options, even if some things aren’t as good as they once were (RIP Wolfen). So today let’s take a look at a few cool things, combos, or just things I found in this book.
5. Sagas Rock
Sagas are the unique Space Wolf take on warlord traits. In addition to the normal trait rules, each trait has a deed tied to it, if you can accomplish the deed, you gain a special aura giving buffs to friendly units. This is not only a good rule but a super flavorful one as it makes you really want to have a bunch of characters running around doing heroic things, deeds worthy of sagas. Now, this rule was in the 8th Ed Codex as well, so it’s not new, but the supplement gets more out of it. For one you simply get more traits now, In the old book, you could only ever have one person with a trait, and thus a saga. Now you can give two people traits (and thus sagas) one of whom can actually have two traits/sagas. On top of that, you can use the stratagem “Deed Worthy of A Saga” to give characters that meet the requirements a saga Aura (though not the trait that goes with it). Meaning if you want to spend the CP on it you can have a ton of people with sagas running around popping off aura’s here and there. On top of that, the sagas are all at least useful, and some are really good and they are pretty reasonable to get now.
4. One Hard To Kill Dude
Space Wolves, as we mentioned above, want to run a lot of characters, and of course you don’t want yours getting killed. Luckily they have some pretty hard to kill dudes. Harald Deathwolf of instance is a right beast, with T5, 7 wounds, and a 2+/4++ and subtracting 1d from all hits (down to 1). If you want to build your own dude try giving a Wolf Lord on Thunderwolf, or a Primaris Chaplain On a Bike the Warlord Trait Resolve of the Bear, this gives him a 6+++ save and prohibits enemyies from re-rolling wound or damage rolls vs him. You can then combo this with the relic Pelt of the Banewolf with gives enemy melee attacks vs him -1 to hit and wound. This can make a Thunderwolf T5 with 7 wounds, a 2+/4++/6++ save – and give enemies -1 to hit and wound with no rerolls on wounds. That’s pretty solid!
3. It’s a Great Army For Classic Marines
Space Wolves have a ton of unique units, and with the exception of Ragnar and the new Hounds of Morkai all of them are Classic Marines. This gives Space Wolves some pretty strong builds that don’t rely on Primaris Marines at all. Indeed given how good some of the characters are, and how powerful Thunderwolf cavalry are, playing an all Primaris army would mean that you are missing out a ton of what not only makes the army Space Wolves but also what makes them good. Thus I think a lot of Space Wolf armies will be pretty heavy on the Classic Marines and if you wanted to run a purely Classic Marine army, Space Wolves are a pretty good choice for that. This is aided by the fact that they’ve even got two Classic Marine Troop choices, and while Grey Hunters are just kind of OK, Blood Claws, with their extra attack on the charge are pretty on par with say Assault Intercessors and have access to more special combat weapons, and Wolf Guard Battle Leaders, making them slightly more expensive but also a bit better.
2. The Army Takes A Lot Of Expertise to Get the Most Out Of
On the face of it, Space Wolves are a pretty easy army to play. They favor a strong assault-style, you get some units, you get some big Dreadnoughts or characters, some big wolves and you run at the enemy and stab them, simple, right? Well just like the Space Wolves themselves are much more than the simple barbarians they seem, the army has a LOT more depth to it. Space Wolves have a ton of tricks revolving around heroic interventions and even around consolidation. These tricks can make a major difference, giving you free movement and getting units into assaults when they might have otherwise missed out. They are also kind of tricky to pull off and something a novice or an inexperienced player might miss (even among experienced players heroic intervention is often missed and forgotten). On top of that with access to Sagas, players will be rewarded by planning out their moves to not only activate sagas, but activate them in a time and place that has a meaningful effect on the rest of the game. Getting all these things right takes a lot of attention to detail and planning and is hard to pull off but will be very rewarding.
1. It’s a Damn Fun Looking Army
Look, the Space Wolf army as it’s written just looks like a ton of fun to play. You’ve got epic characters running around trying to pull off crazy feats. You’ve got big murder robots and crazy guys on massive wolves (which aren’t wolves at all) that you can rush across the table and bash the enemy with. You’ve got elite guards and massive packs of infantry AND doggos. It’s built around a fast, aggressive, and extremely active playstyle. This isn’t a sit around and castle army, this is a do 40 things every turn and get in their face army and that seems fun. Plus you get to constantly prove that Magnus did everything wrong and that Dark Angels are sucky traitors. So there.
Let us know what you think about the new Space Wolves down in the comments!