Friday, 13 December 2013


I was walking home through Romford Wednesday so stopped in GW and picked up stronghold assault. Read on for my thoughts...

Its what i expected, i think if it feels more like a £10-£15 product. But over-inflating the price by about a 3rd on their printed products is par for the course these days eh?

Im a bit disappointed there isnt any wacky datasheets for stuff they dont make models for, but again, i wasnt expecting there to be.
5/6 years ago GW wouldve put stuff like that in it. But nowadays, nothing gets rules without a model. (well, kinda, there is the void shield building, but im pretty sure there must be a kit on the way. I guess my point is its a shame theres still no xenos versions of anything)

I've only leafed through the changes to the buildings rules so far, and as im not totally up to speed with the 6th buildings rules i cant tell if theres many differences.

One thing that did jump out to me though, jump infantry can land on battlements without taking dangerous terrain tests, and any stretch of battlements can count as an access point for a building.
Thus assault marines can jump up onto a bastion from the ground and man the battlements or go inside, that visual looks cool in my mind, so im pleased with that.

Its got datasheets for all the fortifications that were included in the 6th rulebook and all the wall of martyrs release kits too. There does seem to be some minor changes to these. For example the skyshield pad has an optional upgrade that allows you to set up a hoverable flyer unit on it during deployment (if its in your deployment zone) but the flyer is locked to hover mode only during turn 1. Thats quite cool, i can definitely see uses for that, in game plan terms and in narrative scenario terms.
It oddly has rules for the honored imperium aswell, which specifically state it includes the statue and 2 pieces of imperial rubble. The statue i would be willing to let slide, but it needs the rubble too!?
Come on.

It also has some datasheets for 'linked' fortification networks, (which im assuming arent in the wall of martyrs kits?) Which let you take, say, 1-3 bastions, 1-3 aegis lines, 0-1 skyshield pads etc. all as a single fortification.
There is one for the original bastion range and the wall of martyrs range. I cant see these being used often though due to the points costs. Maybe for larger narrative games.
One little ruling about them i do quite like though, is that in the cases where an included fortification states it has to be placed in contact with another piece of the formation, as in the aegis defence line or wall of martyrs trenches, you can use any of the other fortifications in the network to count as its contacting piece, IE a bastion/skyshield pad/firestorm redoubt.
So you could probably make some quite bitchin looking arrangements.

There is also a page of upgrades that you can buy and set up within 6" of the fortification, razor wire, tank traps and defence lines. Kinda nice, if youre taking a bastion and have some points spare, you can chuck it on some razor wire and stick it round the entrance maybe.

However. the bit im most interested in is the siege warfare missions.
There are 3 in total, played in an attacker & defender format.
The defender has a standard force org chart, except they can field up to 3 fortifications.
The attacker also has a standard chart with the exception of a 4th heavy support slot.

The first mission is a kill points mission, with the defenders fortifications worth 1 kill point each to the attacker if he destroys them, but each one left standing at the games end scores the defender a point.

The second is a slightly odd one. Its a linebreaker/objectives game. Its played along the table, with the shorts edges being deployment zones. Outflanking isnt permitted.
The defender gets 3 objectives to hold in their table half, the attacker has to break through.
At the end of the game, the defender scores victory points for the objectives theyre holding, the attacker gets a point for every unit that has left play via the defenders table edge.
Secondary objectives apply as normal except the attacker gets 2 points for linebreaker.
That seems a little lopsided to me, so im trying to remember if the defender gets kill points too.
That would make sense? I'll come back and edit this after i dig the book out.

The final mission is a last stand. The defender gets 3 infantray units to set up and everything else is in reserve (and operates with a modified reserves table, nothing is as likely to turn up as regular reserves, but fast attack are more likely to turn up than heavy support. its an odd one.)
Its kill points, but each of the 3 last stand units are worth more victory points to the attacker if killed, and more to the defender if they survive.

Overall, im glad i picked it up, but would be gladder if it had been a bit cheaper. I'd be very interested in trying a few siege warfare missions out against folks.


  1. At £16 from Dark Sphere I'm tempted to get one the next time I pass but as you say it's a little bit cheeky to rehash lots of old stuff for the price as it invalidates a large part gf the main rule book. Still will be nice to get more use out the scenery.

    1. Yeah, that was partly my thinking, i cant ever see myself stumping up for a bastion in regular games. But for siege warfare missions as the defender?
      I'll field two!!

  2. What if one player only had automated fortifications as their army for one mission?

    1. ...that....wait, tha doesn't work, does it? You still need 1 hq and 2 troops. Thankfully!
      How cheap can we get 1 hq and 2 troops so we can send the rest on a massive fortification network though? :D

    2. Necrons. An Overlord (90) and either two units of 5 Warriors (130) or Immortals (170). Fits the theme of automated forces. Leaving 1,200 odd for fortifications.

    3. That would look especially cool if you had 1200 points of themed necron bastions etc.
      I suppose you might want to balance it out a bit more to have a couple more units to man weapon emplacements though.

    4. Four 5 man warrior units to man the guns and an Overlord, 350 points. I'll have to have a look at the sdtronghold assault book at CrimboCon to work out the rest.

    5. That sounds a bit more like it.
      Actually sounds very doable. as long as youve got all the buildings!
      I'll try and remember to bring the book along with me :)

  3. I have four vengeance weapon batteries (2 battle cannons, 2 punisher cannons), one fire storm redoubt, two bastions and four sets of aegis defence lines. Would rather go with more weapon batteries but could give this a go.