Tuesday, October 13, 2009

the Engine of Penance

Sorry for not posting in some time, real life got in the way a little and I have not been able to finish any new projects for awhile now. In fact today I am going to talk about a model I made quite some time ago The Penitent Engine!
Now the Penitent Engine is one of those models that I think any one that like to just build and paint models should have. Its big, it’s unique and just full of all those things that just scream 40k. I will say that it is by far one of my favorite models. The only two major short comings of it are that it is not very customizable out of the box, and you really really really should pin this thing or it will most likely fall apart. For customizability all you really have are two different “pilots” for it, and male and a female, I chose to use the female mostly because tried to use the male pilot for a kit bash of something else and failed horribly. And you can also mess with the arms and legs a little to affect the pose but that’s really it. So if you have more than two of these guys, unless you've added stuff on from other sprues and what not, they are going to all start looking alike. The shape of it also makes it very fragile, like I said earlier you really need to pin it or it will fall apart. For pinning I would recommend definitely pinning the torso hip joint and the arm joints if you can. Though the later can be hard since you might have to drill through three separate pieces to really secure the arms right.
Since we have looked at some ok pictures and gotten an idea of the model itself you might be wondering “well, how good is it in game?” To that I say, well what do you want it to do?
First off let’s look at this baby’s stats.

First off this thing is an open top walker with front and side armor of 11 and rear of 10, which sounds kind of fragile but you will soon see it makes up for this a little bit with its special rules. Next we see that the darn thing has a BS of 2 which sounds like total bull crap but fortunately the engine only has a template shooting weapon so the crap BS is not a big deal. Ok but hey WS4 that’s decent and hey look it gets D6 attacks and has S5 (10) so this thing can totally lay down some beats… but wait ohhh it only has I3 so it’s a little slow.
So all in all stat wise it is at best ok really just being a scout sentinel with close combat skills so now let’s see if its equipment and special rules might make it better

Ok so here we have not one but two dreadnought close combat weapons (which is why it has a (10) in strength. Unfortunately it does not get an extra attack for two weapons... oh well. It also has two flamers which fire as one heavy flamer (score!) which is pretty cool. Now the part I really like about its weapons is that the rules tell you how it losses weapons (in other words if your opponent scores a weapon destroy on this thing the rules say what goes not the opponent). So on one destroy it losses one arm which reduces its attacks by one (to a min of one) and brings it to S5 and only a flamer instead of a heavy flamer, and On the second destroy roll it losses the flamer minuses another attack (still to min one) and no longer ignores armor (cause you just lost both your dread arms). So all in all so far for 80pts a model your getting an off the bat heavy flamer and D6 S10 power weapon attacks which isn’t half bad. But now let’s see if the special rules make the engines any better

Special Rules
ok first we got rampage. This rule helps a lot because it means the engine ignores all shaken and stunned results for vehicle damage. Which considering it’s a low armor open top thing will happen pretty often. So this helps your close range beat stick get to the fight. Always a plus.
Next we have battle frenzy. All this does is force the engine to always fire its weapons if in range (and did not run) and lets it roll a D6 for number of attacks each turn as shown in its stats. So all this really does is force you to be a little aggressive with it, but frankly you were going to be aggressive with it anyways so this doesn’t affect much.
Last we have holy rage which has been changed in meaning several time on the WH fact and at this time should go with the book version though sometimes games workshop switches it for the rage universal special rule. Anyways what holy rage does is if the model is not already in close combat they move an additional D6 towards the nearest enemy which is not affected by difficult terrain and they must always charge if able to do so. As a note according to the last time a read the FAQ this extra D6 is done during movement phase so the engine can still run if it so chooses (as in if nothing is in range to be fired at) though of course if it runs it can’t charge. But this rule does make the engine very fast allowing it to go anywhere from 7 inches to 12 just in the movement phase giving it a minimum max distance of 8 inches and a max speed of 18 make the engine one of if not the fastest walker in the game.

all an all I say that 80 point per model for a one to three vehicle squadron as a heavy weapon slot with all of this stuff is pretty cool. Though are a bit fragile, easily killed and hard to control with them running at whatever is closest at the time, when they do get into combat they can potentially do some pretty awesome stuff. I would say that the key to this is deploying them well in the beginning to face off against basic troopers or light to medium vehicles. They also make a good distraction since they have to run at the enemy you might as well let them and hope you opponent wastes some fire at them or makes the mistake of ignoring them and gets slammed. The only real down side I see to them is that you must take a priest in your army to allow you the option to use them. And well I feel the priest is usually a point sick and there are only a few squads really worth attaching him to so it can rather constrain your list a bit (I will discuss the priest at some later date and all my feelings him).
All in all I say if you what something fluffy and unpredictable I say yeah take a penitent engine it will be loads of fun. its a pretty decent though not great assault walker that i would say would probably more effective in squadrons that way you can hopefully have a few to die off and assure that one makes it into close combat. i will say staring down 4 or more of these guys from across the table could be a pretty scaring thing. And well if your more into cold long term planning and tactics you might just want to paint this one up and put it on the side or have it count as a chaos dread for your slanessh army or something because its rage rules will force it to move in specific ways which you may not want it to. then again this could make for some interesting strategic planning on your part.

Well until next time
May the Emperor Protect.