Hey everyone, Corrm here to take a look at one of the underrated and less utilized transport vehicles in the Space Marine army, the Land Speeder Storm. For more tactics articles, check out the Tactics Corner.
The Land Speeder Storm is one of my favourite units to use in my White Scars army. As well as being a great looking model, I think it brings a lot to the battlefield to make its inclusion worthy in a strong Space Marine force.
The Land Speeder Storm can fulfil many battlefield roles depending on how it is armed and how it has been purchased (more on this below); it can act as a transport vehicle for your Scout squads, a fast and cheap anti-tank unit or a very nimble objective grabber.
Coming in at 40 points base cost, it has the standard Land Speeder stats of armour 10 all round, two hull points and BS4. It is not the most durable of units, but it is cheap and cheerful and has a lot of utility on the battlefield.
- Cerberus Launcher
- Heavy Bolter
- Option to replace the Heavy Bolter with either a Heavy Flamer, Multi-melta or Assault Cannon
- Deep Strike
- Jamming Beacon- any enemy unit attempting to deep striking within 12″ of the Land Speeder Storm will scatter double the number of dice.
- Transport Capacity of 5 (must be in Scout armour)
As mentioned above, the Land Speeder Storm can fulfill a number of battlefield roles.
Being a fast skimmer, the Land Speeder Storm can move up to 30” per turn (12” move and 18” turbo-boost), meaning that it can cover great distances during the game, avoiding intervening terrain thanks to its skimmer type. This makes the Land Speeder Storm great for grabbing maelstrom objectives or for grabbing objectives at the end of the game.
I normally purchase the Land Speeder Storm as a dedicated transport for a unit of Space Marine Scouts. Even if the Scouts do not deploy in the transport, it gives the Speeder access to Objective Secured (one of the best rules in the game, in my opinion) if your Scouts have the objective secured rule. This makes the speeder great for stealing objectives from non-objective secured units if need be, making the Land Speeder Storm a great sacrificial unit. The Deep Strike and Scout special rules also help it in this roll, allowing you to hold the speeder back in reserves to deep strike or outflank later in the game to help it survive longer to grab objectives.
Upgrading the Land Speeder Storm with a multi-melta can make it a cheap and effective anti-tank unit. A Land Speeder Storm with a multi-melta comes in a 5 pts cheaper than a Landspeeder with a multi-melta for the same armour and number of hull points (though the Landspeeder is not open-topped).
It costs the same as an attack bike armed with a multi-melta, though it has much improved mobility over the attack bike.
Getting into melta range should not be too much of an issue. As a fast skimmer, it can quickly close with its target. The ability to deep strike and Scout should help it close distance with an enemy tank. In addition, using it as a transport vehicle for Scouts will allow it to Infiltrate and Scout, hopefully allowing you to get into prime position for an alpha-strike on an enemy vehicle.
You could double down on the anti-tank firepower by adding a Scout sergeant with a combi-melta and meltabombs. A scout sergeant with meltabombs in a land speeder storm makes a great drop pod hunter.
The basic armaments of the Land Speeder Storm make it useful for adding some anti-infantry firepower to your Space Marine army.
The Cerberus Launcher provides you with a S4 large blast, great for taking on swathes of large, light armoured infantry. It has quite a short range at only 18”, but on a manoeuvrable speeder, you should have no problem getting in range. Plus, at maximum range, you should not have to worry about standard infantry assaulting your vehicle, unless they get incredibly lucky with the charge roll. I think, however, that one of the biggest benefits of the Cerberus launcher is that it causes Blind. The Land Speeder Storm is one of the few ways to access this special rule in the Space Marine Codex and can be a real bonus against many armies. It will be particularly useful against opponents with good firepower, but lower initiative such as Necrons (great for targeting Tomb Blades) or Astra Militarum forces. It is also great for trying to weaken an opponent for the Scout squad the Land Speeder Storm is carrying to assault, though you risk the blast scattering back onto your own unit at close range and blinding them (it has happened to me more than once!).
The Land Speeder Storm also comes armed with a heavy bolter, which will normally do good damage against targets that are susceptible to the Cerberus Launcher. You can also choose to upgrade the Heavy Bolter to a Heavy Flamer for free. This is great for taking out low armoured infantry in cover, but I would be hesitant about getting so close to an enemy unit with such a fragile vehicle. However, if you are planning to charge a unit of scouts into an enemy squad, a quick blast with a heavy flamer may soften them up a little for your assault.
Jamming Beacon is an often overlooked special rule for the Land Speeder Storm. It makes deep striking near the speeder a more risky prospect as any scatter will generally be rolling on 4D6. Frequently, this will put the deep striking unit well out of position for what your opponent had in mind.
I find the Land Speeder Storm useful when facing a drop pod heavy army. Your opponent either has to deploy the pod 12” away from the Speeder or risk the potential of scattering far out of position or even misshaping if they scatter off the board.
If I am going second against a drop pod heavy list, I like to deploy the Land Speeder Storm near valuable units (normally deployed near the board edge for maximum mishap risk) to discourage enemy drop pods. This tactic could also be useful if you are facing objective secured drop pods. You could infiltrate or Scout your Land Speeder Storm onto objectives to potentially stop your opponent from landing their pods on the objective, forcing you to kill it in order to score said objective.
One benefit of the Land Speeder Storm is that it is the cheapest vehicle you can assault from in Codex Space Marines. Obviously, Space Marine Scouts are not the greatest assault unit in the game, but against weaker unit, they can still do some damage or potentially tie up a unit for a turn or two. As mentioned above, I frequently used a Scout sergeant with Meltabombs as a drop pod hunting unit. The Land Speeder Storm gives the Scout unit an additional assault range and the meltabombs automatically hit the drop pod, with a 50% chance of blowing it up if you penetrate (quite likely with meltabombs).
The White Scars Stormbringer Squadron adds to the utility of the Land Speeder Storm as an assault vehicle. The Rapid Deployment rule allows the Scouts to disembark (and assault) even if the speeder moves up to 12”. You lose objective secured for the Land Speeder Storm, but the ability improves your threat range to a potential 30”.
Given the utility of the Land Speeder Storm as described above, why do we not see them in every Space Marine army?
Obviously, the Speeder is not the most durable of units. With armour 10 all round and only 2 hull points, most basic infantry in the game have a chance of taking out the Speeder in either the shooting phase or in combat. The Land Speeder Storm is very fragile, so can easily give up first blood. You can Jink to improve the durability of the Speeder, but this greatly diminishes its firepower, as you cannot fire the Cerberus Launcher or Heavy Flamer and will be snap firing other weapons.
Jinking will have no effect if you are using the Land Speeder Storm as an objective grabber or assault vehicle though, so jinking is a great way to keep the speeder alive to fulfill this role.
It is also open-topped, meaning that any penetrating hit has the potential to destroy it outright, possibly killing the Scout passengers as it does. Also, any template weapons will cause additional casualties to the Scout passengers, so be wary of any heavy flamers or their equivalents.
In Conclusion, the Land Speeder Storm is a fast and fragile addition to a Space Marine army that can find a lot of useful roles on the battlefield. Give it a go, you may be surprised at what it can do- it’s a great moment when your opponent’s Grav Centurions in the drop pod scatter off the board and are destroyed thanks to the Jamming Beacon.
You can also pick up some cheap models in our Second Hand Shop. Some of these gems are quite rare, sometimes they’re fully painted!