We all love Terminators, but for a few years now they’ve been less than amazing units. This may be a way to play them competitively. As always check the Tactics Corner for more tactics articles.
As is often the case with some of these wilder Space Wolf lists, they revolve around one of the alternate detachments. In this case, the Champions of Fenris detachment. As it allows you to have 2-8 Elites and no Troops requirement, you can build some crazy lists.
Add into this equation the cheap Space Wolf Terminators that come in as small as 3 man units and you have a really cost effective way to put them on the table. Plus, they get the bonuses of the Champions of Fenris Deatachment to their stats, but they also have to issue or accept a challenge which is a bit annoying, but oh well. We have a plan to deal with that.
So, in the age old tradition of table top games everywhere, we min max the crap out of that combo! Get some toast, because we’ve got Spam inbound.
What are the best parts of the Terminator squad (besides the armor itself)? The Cyclone Missile Launcher, Thunder Hammer/Chain Fist and Storm Shield. Let’s maximize those elements, and minimize the parts we don’t want: over-priced Storm Bolters and 5++ save bodies.
Here’s the equation: Terminators x 3: Sarge with a Storm Shield (free if he swaps it for his Power Weapon), Termie with a Cyclone Missile launcher, and the last Termie with a TH/SS. That’s a cheap unit that does a lot. It’s flexible, it can deploy on the table or Deep Strike, it is relatively durable with 2+ armor and a pair of Storm Shields, and it gives you a pair of Storm Bolters (Sarge and the Cyclone) as well as the Cyclone itself and it’s pair of Missile Shots. Not bad at all on a mobile platform. It also fights well in melee, with a Thunder Hammer and Power Fist protected by a Sarge that always issues or recieves a challenge and hopes to tank wounds with his Storm Shield. You can toss a Chain Fist on the Cyclone if you choose to deal with heavy armor such as Knights, which are very prevalent these days. The obvious weakness of the unit is the low model count. However, this is mitigated by the fact that you have lots of these units. Up to 8 to be precise. EDIT: I misread the heavy weapon rule in the Wolf Guard Termie entry as 1 in 5 can take a Heavy Weapon, not 1 per 5. Sorry for the confusion! You would need 5 Termies to get the Cyclone. I would run the other 2 models with no upgrades, just ax or maul and Storm Bolter. This takes the total unit cost to 205, still quite reasonable and while taking 8 units may not make sense at that price point, you get more bodies.
Alternatively you could run Termicide units of 3 with 3 Combi Weapons as backfield disruption units that are cheap as chips, still have Counter Attack and still have power weapons! Not bad.
What this gives you is an MSU core and gives you the ability to cover all the objectives on the table, fire up to 16 missiles at 8 different targets a turn, drop special weapons on enemy units, and fight in melee well, too. That many targets are difficult to deal with for most opponents as you simply present too many of them to deal with faster than they cripple your ability to destroy them.
The other nice part of the list is that you don’t worry too much about going first or second. So long as you have reserve manipulation built into your army, you can choose to go second vs. an alpha strike list and then beta strike them out of reserves, anywhere on the table. Plus, with your 48″ range, you can even do this vs. Tau (who typically bone reserve armies) because you can out-range them.
To balance out these elite, low model count units, you want to cover your bases in terms of dealing with units that will give you trouble. The Terminators are great for dealing with hard targets like MCs and vehicles, but they will struggle a bit with hordes (although Frag missiles en masse sure aren’t bad at it). Flyers also need to be dealt with. Add supporting units that fill these roles such as Stormwolves, Rapier units, Sicaran and Scorpius tanks, etc. This ensures that you don’t get overwhelmed by units you can’t deal with.
Astra Militarum or Space Marines would make solid allies for this core of units, too. To provide some bulk in Scouts or Platoons, with low cost support units like Wyverns, Stormtalons, etc.
Is it the best list out there? Nope. But it may be a way to play Terminators in a competitive setting and have fun with it.
What do you all think?