Playing EPIC in 28mm.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Imperial Guard Infantry Support Options

OK, With 8th just around the corner, I thought I'd disambiguate the existing options vs their points cost to decide which is best.

What ?  Nah.  Back to reality:

The support options for Iggies are based on the two available chassis: because of the development costs for plastic models, despite there being almost infinite variety available in the fluff, we're stuck lookin' at these options.  Indeed, they are the only ones in the codex, so there we are.

We've got the Griffon and Wyvern, which are mortar carriers.  Good solid options, pleasingly their on table performance seems to match the fluff; there were both M113 and FV432 mortar carriers back in the day, before the users of those weapon systems veered away from High Intensity peer vs peer warfighting towards COIN operations.  So there's a strong raison d'etre for these.

Next, the HellHound, which can be superb on the table top,  Flamethrower tanks were actually widely used by the Allies in WW2, mostly in bunker clearances.  Crocodile tanks are perhaps not so popular now as we try to convince someone (ourselves) that setting fire to people is somehow cheating, even in a war.  A lot of iggy players will invariably find a way to shoe horn one of this into any list, and with good reason.

Image result for Forge World hellhound

The Devil Dog is not an exposition of the Hellhound, it is a different weapon system using the same chassis, its purpose (anti-armour) is quite different.  The problem I have with this is the ludicrously short range.  People who go tank hunting at ball throwing sort of ranges use hand held weapons; RPGs, bazookas et al.  If you're going to go to the bother of making a tank hunting AFV, it needs range.  TL Las cannons are much more likely.  Predator = Good, Devil Dog = Bad.

Image result for devil dog tank

The BaneWolf is another weapon with no widely reliable real world equivalent.  Since the end of WW2 there have been loads of NBC related AFVs for front line soldiers, but these have all been NBC defence and NBC recce.  I know that the Warsaw Pact did trial large blowers for delivering chemical weapons, but quite frankly, using artillery or aerial bombardment seems so much more sensible. Especially if the type of goo you are squirting is the best ever thing at dissolving exactly the type of vehicle you're using.  Arty Bombardment = Good, Bane Wolf = Bad.

Now we get onto assault guns - the STuG option.  The Thunderer and fundamentally impossible Demolisher are engineer tools, not infantry support weapons, so we'll park them for another day (ha ha, see what I did there ?).

Epic had three vehicles which did not appear in WK40K:  The Chimeradon was a Chimera mounting a battlecannon. Whilst the Epic one had the battlecannon in a turret and still carried an infantry squad, if we smack the bejesus out of this concept with the sensible stick (ie no Demolisher-esque dimensionally challenged turret, and infantry outside on the ground where we want them, not Tardis'd into an AFV) then the BattleCannon (72", high strength, pie plate etc) all of a sudden looks like a proper assault gun:

"In 1935, Colonel Erich von Manstein proposed that Sturmartillerie (assault artillery) units were to be formed and used for direct support of infantry divisions. They were to be equipped with assault guns mounted on tracked chassis. Used to accompany the infantry into the attack, the assault gun’s main aim was to knock out pill-boxes, machine gun nests, anti-tank guns and other obstacles.  They were simply to replace the horse-drawn artillery pieces, while offering speed and protection."

So whilst non-Iggy players might cry "Foul !" this has a better basis in reason than the bonkers Devil Dog and Bane Wolf.  Looking at the quote from Achtung Panzer, out of the options available to the Iggy player, the Battlecannon toting Chimeradon is the way ahead; both in the leathality and survivability (due to the range).

The Chimerax was Chimera with a quad mounting turret with four Multi Lasers.  I'll just wait here whilst you go back and read that again.  Go on.  Still breathing ?  Ok,  Now we have a plastic Hydra model for AAA duties and so on, which would seem to be the natural niche for any vehicle armed with multiple multilasers.  With the troop capacity it still needs a good whack with the sensible stick. We'll remove the troop carrying capacity, which basically leaves us with a multilaster armed hydra.   It is entirely likely that some Forge World somewhere builds its hydras with multilasers. For one, it saves having to crate tonnes of autocannon ammunition across vast interstellar distances.  Entirely plausible, IMHO.

It's got multiple multilasers, what more d'ya want ?

The Chimerro is basically the Bradley M3 version of the Chimera.  For those of you who are struggling to place it, the Bradley M2 is the IFV variant - autocannon turret, hull firing points for the squad inside, why, it could almost be Chimera !  That's the M2 version, moving on to the Chimerro;  The "Scout" Bradley M3 is a cavalry, not an infantry platform - it has a reduced troop carrying capacity and a clever gizmo which means that the crew can re-load the TOW (in 40K - HKM) from inside the vehicle.  I don't think it's actually a TOW missile any more, but you get the picture; in this configuration, the Hunter Killer Missile fires every turn, it's not a one shot wonder.

I think that this is also an entirely logical Chimera variant and I can see no reason why either GW, FW or a 3rd party aftermarket manufacturer has not done one.  (I know, Drax).

And now, having run through the tracked options, we're back to the Armoured Sentinel, which, as I said before, is actually for tank hunting in close country; dense woods or urban environments, not actually 'reconnaissance'.  So as you'll remember from my post about recce options, these are also an infantry support option.

Well, that's my reasoning behind the STuG option; but the STuG is the next post.

All pictures ripped from the internet with absolutely no thought for the owners.  Soz. 


  1. I always viewed the Demolisher more as an AVRE style vehicle, like a Churchill + Petard!

    1. Absolutely. So why do Iggy players take them to blow up vehicles instead of bunkers ? It needs fixing, IMHO.

  2. Nice little run down although I must admit I didn't get a few of the real world references.

  3. Brilliant!

    Well, you knew this was coming...:


  4. I used to use 2 Chimerro's & an armoured car (can't remember the name they gave it but it was designed & built by a lad from my local Aberdeen GW store who left to go work at GWHQ) in my Guard, both had rules in the old citadel journal.

    I did have Chimerax & Chimedon turrets converted as well but the Chimerax just drew too many complaints.