Using speed, stealth or tactics to defeat your foes is one thing, but incinerating them, while less subtle, is just as effective. In today’s Chapter Focus, we’re looking at the Salamanders, stoic paragons of strength, honour and flamecraft. We’ve already taken a first look at the Salamanders Chapter Tactic, but today, we’re taking a deep dive into how this works with the rest of your army and other powerful abilities like the Salamanders’ Stratagem and their special character.
Salamanders are renowned on the tabletop for their mastery of flamer weapons, and Salamanders armies have traditionally revolved around getting as many of them into the opponent’s backline as soon as possible. This is still true of the Salamanders in the new codex, but their Chapter Tactic is far more versatile that before, to the extent that you’ll be able to field a viable Salamanders army with no flamer or melta weapons at all!
Master Artisans allows any Salamanders unit to re-roll a single failed hit roll and a single failed wound roll every time it shoots or fights – essentially, this is a more flexible version of the old Master Crafted rule. In practice, this opens up a huge range of possibilities for the Salamanders: safely supercharging plasma weaponry or guaranteeing a deadly blow with a power fist, for example. Like the other Chapter Tactics, Master Artisans will benefit Dreadnoughts as well, allowing them to make the most of their powerful weaponry – if you want a whole army of these ancient heroes, then Salamanders are one of the best choices for your Chapter Tactics (just as you’d expect from the guys who brought you Bray’Arth Ashmantle!).
Salamanders armies will be able to combine these Chapter Tactics with a range of other options in the codex to create some great armies. Salamanders Characters in particular are going to be some of the most powerful in the game, and it’s more than possible to have a Captain in Gravis Armour with Strength 5 and Toughness 6(!) through their unique warlord trait and relic. The Salamanders’ unique Stratagem, Flamecraft, greatly boosts the power of flamer weapons of all shapes and sizes, while their unique character, Vulkan He’stan, offers further benefits to generals who want to bring the heat to the battlefields of the 41st Millennium.
Finally, the Salamanders can make great use of one of the most powerful units in the new codex: the Aggressors. In a Salamanders army, you’ll want to equip yours with Flamestorm Gauntlets; these powerful weapons benefit hugely from Flamecraft in the shooting phase and gain deadly accuracy from Master Artisans in the combat phase. A firebase of Aggressors surrounding Vulkan He’Stan is going to be nigh impregnable and is especially terrifying when you consider that these walking fortresses can fire twice if they remain still in the movement phase.
If you’re a fan of flamers, you really can’t go wrong with the Salamanders. Make sure to come back tomorrow for another Chapter Focus, looking at a more sinister but no less powerful Chapter of battle-smiths – the Iron Hands.
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