Monday, 30 September 2013

Review: Tactica Wraithknight

Game Workshop recently released a new e-book offering tactics for the immense Wraithknight. I half joked that after my recent run, I could have wrote this myself. So I decided to drop the £1.49 asking price to the GW Overlords and see what wonderful insights they bring to the table.

Now it seems that there isn't a lot to say about this model, as the book itself rocks up at 19 pages. But when you are only throwing down one and a half quid I doubt that you could expect too much from it. My main concern about this would be whether there was anything in there to warrant it as an e-book, or are we just paying for a glorified magazine article?

The e-book starts off with three pages of listing the Codex entry, it explains all the special rules in there after listing them, but you have to wonder, surely if you have brought this, you are an Eldar general? So surely you would have the Codex already and this is just padding or filler and a waste of time?

It next spends some time going over the strengths and weaknesses of the unit. To be honest, there is nothing surprising in here with such gems as 'In fact, with 6 wounds, it is as resilient as two Wraithlords!' which I would disagree with and '[poisoned attacks] make a mockery of high toughness values'. It just seems like it is pointing out the obvious. Maybe this book is designed for people who are thinking of buying a Wraithknight and don't have an Eldar army? Maybe those who don't really know the rules of 40K either?

Then we move to selection options, which once again fail to throw any curveballs. Standard loadout for anti tank, suncannon with a single scatter laser for anti infantry or a Ghostglaive with 'two heavy weapons' for close combat. I would have liked to have seen a suggestion for what to take with the Ghostglaive, or maybe a reason for a different option with the Suncannon. It also makes note that you can take the Wraithknight as the warlord in an Iyanden army, but you are looking at a page of text reiterating that 'the wraithknight is really tough'.

Moving to the next section it actually gets a bit interesting for someone who probably hasn't used the Wraithknight in many games. Going over how to move it to be effective, target priority for shooting, actually putting it into close combat and a few warnings about close combat formations that would take it down quite easily.

Finally it talks about effective combinations. But the problem with this is kind of something synonymous with Games Workshop, it's about the upsell. Two of the suggestions are for Iyanden Supplement options, one is adding an Autarch/Farseer on a Jetbike (to keep up with him I guess) and finally, another Wraithknight. There is nothing there that is a leftfield suggestion.

I think that is what disappoints me with this e-book. It's too safe. There is nothing in there that can't be gleaned from reading the codex. I wasn't expecting to learn a lot of new tactics from this as I have used the Wraithknight enough to have discovered all of this information, but I was hoping to find a little nugget to try in a game at some point. Take Deep Strike for instance, it is not mentioned at all in this book, but being Jump, it has it. I would be tempted to deep strike it with the Ghostglaive and then go punching things. It doesn't even discuss the Wraithknight being a scoring unit in Big Guns and how to use it to steal objectives.

I think Games Workshop need to do a couple of things 1) Be more adventurous in there writing of tactics and 2) Stop trying to monetise everything. This is nothing different to the articles you can read on any hobby site except that it is behind a paywall. I would have liked to have seen this in White Dwarf perhaps, an article on wraithknight tactics to show how good it is might sell some more, which is what they are trying to do day in day out. If the GW website was less of a catalogue and had more hobby articles, this would fit right in there, but until Games Workshop understands that the internet has moved on since it's inception and there is a lot of this content out there already, I would recommend giving this a miss.


  1. I would agree. IMHO this kind of thing should be in the white dwarf as it used to be in fact I have some older issues that have articles titled tactica they were more generic such as fast attack etc. but I would find something usually that would make me consider different options for my own force or to counter an opponent kind of a bummer that it is now separate and have to pay extra for it

    1. It's odd aswell that new White Dwarf did seem to start off with having some tactica in it. They had that article where they compared two different units that do similar functions and had them run a gauntlet to find how resilient they are. But like most interesting things in new White Dwarf, it seems to have disappeared.

      I don't like moaning about the things that GW do, but if I am honest, they don't do much to help themselves.

  2. For the Character books, ie Ezekiel/Azrael, the money is well spent. They contain exclusive fluff and background information on them that you can't get elsewhere.

    However, there is not other information you can't get in the codex. They should all be 49p-99p imo.

  3. I always had this same problem asking advice at a GW shop. They usually advised that I buy X, Y, or Z to help with my problem.

    Sometimes that may be the answer and I understand that they have to sell stuff, but that isn't always the issue and it should feel like I'm in a Best Buy trying to avoid their product replacement plan.

    1. I have found this out myself too, despite how big your army currently is, the answer to your problem lies with the lack of a unit you have not yet brought.

      I guess we are seeing it more and more these days how GW is turning it from a hobby to a nickel and dime business.