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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
The chaos spawn went from being an equipment piece back in 3rd edition, to being a joke unit in 5th, until hitting gold in 6th/7th edition.
As a Fast Attack choice they are competing with only Heldrake and bikers, but with the arrival of the Gorepack Formation, we can happily say they are just competing with heldrakes.
Even without the formation, bikers are a less appealing unit, and heldrake is no longer the no brainer it was.
Let's analyze the unit a little:

Operation: "low numbers units"
Spawns love to deal with "low numbers units". LNU, in my mind, means any unit with a combination of this factors:
-low number of attacks
-low body count and high toughness
-low toughness and high body count
-low (2+ , 3+) armour save or rear AV

If you mix a couple of those factors you can paint in your mind the perfect prey for your spawns: since they have a good Strenght, a good toughness, and lots of wounds and attacks, spawns can kill any horde (unless comprised by uber-elite death star-ish models), win attrition fights against any elite unit, eat tons of mid-tier firepower and attacks, crush entire vehicle squadrons...Spawns like to kill and get killed by power weapons: any model you remove is lots of points invested by the opponent removed, and any wound you take from a power weapon/fist, is a power weapon that just was wasted on an unarmored model. Also, gravweapons are useless agianst the critters: charge those centurions / bikers with spawns and watch the carnage from a safe place.


A fluid wave of madness
Spawns just don't care about terrain. They ignore it and use it at their own advantage. Fast and tough, you can use them to further screen your advancing units, granting them a 5+ cover from intervening models, while still getting a cover for the spawn, since you are advancing trough cover, aren't you? A brutal way of using them is to take three units of 5 spawns, stretch them all along the board, using LOS blocking features and cover to become even more tough and unleash a tablewide assault by turn 2. This works exceptionally well especially if you put some biker lords or sorcerors with those fleshy guys. Being fearless too, means this horde is meant to be eraticated or to be dealt with.

The Mark of No-braino
Spawns have no options beside extra bodies and Marks of Chaos; as often there is only a mark you should consider.
Since khorne give the beasty abilities they already have; since Slaanesh gives them an initiative boost they rarely will use (are you so afraid of regular marines??); since Tzeentch gives them a shitty 6+ invulnerable save (ahahahahahah seriously, c'mon), the only TRUE and ONLY option is Mark of Nurgle. T6 Means that bolters and marines, and the meager str 3 of humans and their lasguns wounds on 6, almost powerless against the tide of flesh and madness! They will just rely on high numbers and high volume of fire to wound them, and we already discussed the "low number" preference of spawns... Also, it basically removes the only threat to the unit: Str 10 attacks. With only direct ID effects to threaten them, you can safely charge headlong and enjoy the spectacle.

The true Hounds of chaos
Spawns are fast, ignore difficult terrains and are tough and fearless. They will catch almost every enemy unit (even eldar jetbikes are not so save) and will contest any objective until the very end. Considering that the average unit is well under 200 pts and has 15 wounds, having them grabbing an objective and hugging cover can be a reliable strategy; they can also snatch this objective from another unit's grasp, given the ginormous numbers of attack they can put out. Even just a unit of those beasties can be a tactically unvaluable asset. They simply are one of the best unit to play Maelstrom of War missions.

Mutated beyond usefulness
Spawns get a random power every combat sub-phase. Honestly i'd rather buy those upgrades because 2 on 3 are almost garbage. You just want to pick the best dice for the number of attacks. You want each spawn to produce at least 4 attacks each turn. Other results are...fluffy. Just be careful not to get into unwinnable fights and any power will be useful, apart from 4+ armour save.

Suggested layout:

Just two. Seriously.

5 Spawns, MoNurgle (180)

5 Spawns, escorting a JuggerLord with Axe of Blind fury. (320)

Other possible uses are as point fillers and annoyance units. Got 36 pts spare? Get a Nurgle Spawn. Got 30 pts spare? Get a Spawn. Even as solitaire, they can pack a punch and grab objectives!

What do you think?
 

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JUGGERNUT
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I love Spawn.

Until Khorne Daemonkin came out, they were my bread and butter escort for the Juggerlord with axe, as you described. Backed by Be'lakor buffing them with Invisibility, there is really little to be done against them but die.

Without invisibility, they are of course super vulnerable outside of cover. However, 12" movement and move through cover really helps a lot. During the terrain setup phase, it really pays off to keep this in mind. Smart terrain placement will give them a cover save during the 2 or so turns it takes them to get into combat. Against a high volume of shots, such as lots of rapid-firing bolters, even their T5 and 3 wounds can be eaten away thanks to no armor save.

At strength 5 they are a threat to most targets, especially those with a toughness value. If you're running Khorne Daemonkin, you can use the Rage + Furious Charge buff (though I'd pretty much always choose FNP over this if possible, though you can have both with a Slaughtercult) to gain S6 and do even more damage. If all 5 survive and actually make it into combat, rolling a 3 or higher for their number of attacks is awesome. 6 is pretty hilarious. Against hordes or large numbers of attacks, I think the 4+ save can really help out. Against tougher non-vehicle units, poisoned attacks can be useful too. Obviously you can't count on either of these rolls when you need them, so your mileage may vary. Chaos, gotta be random! Look at how much fluffy fun we're having!

I'm really loving them in conjunction with other fast units. Gorepacks and Maulerfiends, mostly. Bikers pack the meltas to threaten armor along with the fiends, and hounds to tie things up. Against my regular opponent, he runs a mostly armor list (walkers/predators/razorbacks) so he focuses on the maulerfiends first, then bikers. This usually leaves the spawn and hounds free to attack at will. Tanks are definitely the priority targets because of rear AV 10. Even hammer of wrath is gonna strip hull points some of the time. The walkers pose a bigger problem, because even S6 isn't going to scratch the AV13 of a contemptor. But that's why you tie them up with hounds and maybe lose 1 wound per round of combat and completely neuter their shooting ability with 80 points of doggies.

It's a shame that you have to pay for the MoK upgrade for Daemonkin Spawn, but the ability to buff them with FNP turns this already good unit into something really obnoxious. It's hard enough for MEQ to wound them, but on top of that to get a 1/3 chance to save that wound is hilarious. Out of 15 wounds that really becomes meaningful.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks, venomlust! That was an awesome post!
I agree, in deamonkin they can benefit from fnp by a great deal. However, in my opinion, doggies are the spawns of daemonkin, and honestly, MoNurgle allied spawns are just plain superior to T5 with fnp (specially because they don't rely on other things to die :biggrin: )
Usually i could think about a gorepack allied in a CSM main force: hounds to tie stuff before spawns arrive and bikers to melt AV nasties away.
However, even in a pure daemonin army, Fnp spawns..are a nightmare!!
 

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Good guide but just to point out...

The Mark of No-braino
...
T6 Means that bolters and marines wounds on 6, and the meager str 3 of humans and their lasguns are powerless against the tide of flesh and madness! Also, it basically removes the only threat to the unit: Str 10 attacks. With only direct ID effects to threaten them, you can safely charge headlong and enjoy the spectacle.
S3 and S4 both wound on 6s vs T6. So it is hardly powerless.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
you are right! Edited! Thanks :)
 
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