Sunday, January 20, 2013

Rise of the helldrake! 5th edition favorites become viable again?

By Spaguatyrine

Will the rise of the dragon...... aka Helldrake what can the imperium to do fight the sudden influx of dragon eggs hatching across the galaxy?

Might the Storm Raven be the answer...
With 9 out of 10 Helldrake players taking the baleflamer to kill everything infantry, the storm raven could become the bane of the helldrake along with the vendetta. 

The Storm Raven has two options, the blood angels storm raven and the grey knights storm raven.

The Blood Angels Storm Raven is the best option against helldrakes as it has 4 strength 8 ap 1 missiles and a choice of a typhoon missile launcher, twin linked multi-melta or twin linked heavy bolter in the nose of the gunship, and a turret mounted twin linked lascannon, plasma cannon, or assault cannon. 

The Grey Knight Storm Raven has the same options except the 4 mindstrike missiles.  I would rather have the str 8 ap1 but the mindstrike missiles cause perils of the warp on any psyker that is under the small blast.  So sniping out the psykers is pretty easy. This is great against those IG blobs with a rune priest hiding in them or a primaris psyker.  This also works great against other grey knight players as all IC's and grey knights are psykers.

I have started testing the storm raven with my GK/Necron list instead of 2 night scythes and I am running the version with a twin linked multi melta and twin linked lascannon.  The Storm Raven has power of the machine spirit so has the potential to take out 2 flyers at once.  Also the AV12 all around and immune to double dice on melta is great.

With the changes in 6th and a higher number of maledictions, witchfire, etc, I believe the Psyflemen dread can become viable in certain army builds again.  Melta has dropped off the planet it seems to be replaced by plasma.  Plasma isn't as good as taking care of AV12.  Missles have also dropped off for autocannons. Again which are not as good against AV12. 

Grey Knight dreads have reinforced Aegis which provides a 12" bubble to any grey knight model.  If a psychic power targets a grey knight that is in the area affect of reinforced aegis there is a -4 leadership for making the psychic test.  This is huge as trying to make a psychic test on leadership 6 or less can be very difficult. 

The psyflemen dread also provides good anti transport and anti flyer capability as they are twin linked strength 8 autocannons with psybolt ammo. 

So what are your thoughts?

Can these two 5th edition has beens come back to being a viable option in 6th again?


  1. Stormravens still are pretty tough for a Vendetta to take out. Basically, the only guaranteed way of killing the Stormraven is to strip off three hull points. Otherwise, you are asking to win a minor lottery via the vehicle damage table and lascannons only get +1, so it is not reliable. I just played a game against a stormraven and my vendetta totally failed to kill it.

    Helldrakes should be easier to kill, but still you are basically hoping for a lucky penetrating hit. That is why I find it is important to pair a flier with an Aegis to team up against enemy fliers.


    1. I agree with you Colman. Can decide if a dread is better or an aegis with quad gun.....

  2. Great analysis!

    There's no doubt that we'll be seeing more Helldrakes, but I wonder if Chaos will get frustrated by armies that build to counter them. In my mind, this means doing one of three things:

    1) Go horde
    2) Have good invulns
    3) Have multiple wound models

    Options 1 and 3 are Nids. Orcs pull off 1 nicely. And Dreadknights and Wraiths do 3 and 4 with smashing success, or your list. So yeah, I think if you toss in a Stormraven that will add that little extra spice to give Helldrakes heartburn. And shoot, all the things that are good against the Helldrakes just so happen to be solid against other builds!

    I'm not so sure about the rifledread though. It's not a bad choice, but my gut tells me that the points would probably be spent better elsewhere.

  3. Heldrakes are mean beasts indeed. With a 5++ and It Will Not Die, they are pretty darn survivable. I've been contemplating bringing my SR back to the fight, Still not sure if it's worth it's points though.

  4. I agree with both of you for the most part. yes it is 200 points for BA and 205 for GK. Since both can transport scoring units and drop out their cargo before they can be destroyed they have an additional benefit.

    The dread provides the reinforced aegis. We will see in some test games.

    Also a twin linked multi melta at 12" range and that lascannon look pretty awesome to crack that av12.

  5. GK don't really have a great way to deal with flyers. I have been still running dreads and they are not reliable at all for flyers IMO. I have been taking IG allies to get a vendetta but I am starting to think I need to test a SR or give up and add more 2+ armor to my lists to deal with the Heldrakes.

  6. Drkmorals,

    I agree with you about the air problems that GK have. I have used the storm raven and it has worked very well so far. I have taken to looking at allies as well and necrons and IG both have great options. Necron are my favorite at this point in time. The issue is that helldrakes rape necron air. But cutting a few points and putting in a raven and a psyflemen dread are beneficial. You should get at least 1 hit with the dread. That is a 4+ to do something to an av12 flyer.

  7. I am actually considering the SR as my first flyer usage mainly because I find BA more fun to play than any other marines.

  8. The Ba storm Raven is pretty awesome. Wish my GK could take that version.

  9. This Brodrick by the way. I really enjoy BA and it is finding allies I like to complement them. I would really like to play eldar with them. But they just don't fit. I am considering space wolves but it is very hard lol. Blue marines are interesting too.

    I want something fast. That is what I like to play BA have fast troops, eldar have faster troops but the issue is the vehicles cost more points then I think they are worth just to be fast.

    I know there are going to be Chaos Marines, Chaos Demons, IG all over the place. I have really considered either Eldar for Doom or Blue marines for Null Zone as I think power fields will really be in play. I am all over the place and just need to play some more lists.

  10. Oh ok. Hey Broderick. The problem with Eldar and any allies is that you can't have allied psychic powers. Runes will hurt your allies. If you want fast, Denial and Elder are the best choice in my opinion.

  11. I used the storm raven in two more games and it did amazing things. I think it is a keeper. The dread also won his points back by allowing his reinforced aegis to stop multiple enfeeble's and doom of malantai ap1 blasts.

  12. Is the Hydra not a shoe-in over these more expensive air models (if you still want good troops pts)?


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