I have just managed to ‘acquire’ the new 40k starter set, Sanctus Reach – Stormclaw, and thought there may be some people interested in its contents.
Nice attractive box, showing an Ork (yay!) going at it with a Space Woof (boo!). This is the thinner format box like the older Black Reach one, rather than the deep, fat starter sets you got in the 3rd edition days. Still, it weighs in at £75 which is… quite a bit these days.
Inside, it comes with a mini-version of the 40k rulebook and, I suspect, this one reason many people will get this set. The mini-rulebooks are just easier to use around the table and, unlike previous rulebooks, this is not a ‘cut down’ edition – as far as I can tell with a quick read through, it is exactly the same as the hardback, just smaller.
Anyway, my hardback was immediately relegated to ‘home use only’ and the mini-book is now in my Box of Things I Need to Play.
This is the campaign book you get with the box set. Normally, these are largely forgettable (looking at you, Island of Blood), but I find myself quite liking this one. It builds on the Sanctus Reach campaign that has recently been released, with the Space Woofs diving down to kick some Ork bottom. It has the background for this (which you will want, if you are after the full story of Sanctus Reach) plus some scenarios that use the models in the box to illustrate certain parts of the campaign – and, it has to be said, while you may only play them once, they look to be worthwhile. May come back to these for another post in the future as our Space Woof player is interested in taking part…
Also included in this book are all the wargear and stats you need for all the models in the set.
What makes this book a little more interesting is that it has stats for the specific models in the set. So, you do not just get a Space Woof Commander, but Krom Dragongaze. Now, most of these you can build straight from the appropriate Codex (though I am still strugglinh to find out why Rustgob’s Runts cost 5 points more than the equivalent herd of Grots in Codex: Orks), but occasionally there is a light touch of fluff, such as the Boss Nob of Skrak’s Skull-Nobz getting Hammer of Wrath. One of the Killa Kanz counts as a Deff Dread for the Cowardly Grots test. Just little touches, but interesting for all that.
What might see more use beyond the scenarios in this set are the Formations. For example, you can use all of the Ork models in the set to make up Grukk’s Rippin’ Krew and get a bunch of Leadership re-rolls, along with Tellport Attacks. The Space Woofs get an equivalent formation.
You will have the models, so why not use them, eh?
The models themselves are showcased in the usual way by the instruction booklets, one for each force.
As for the models themselves, you get a fair few sprues in the box, though it is not exactly bursting with them in the way that, say, Warhammer Quest used to. These are the Killa Kanz. There is no variation possible in the weaponry, so you get a Grotzooka, Big Shoota and Rokkit Launcha. As an Ork player, I have to say that selection is fair enough. Would be nice to cheese it will all Rokkits, but you cannot have everything. These weapons are good enough.
These are the two big sprues you get in the box, along with…
Two smaller ones. Together, these make up the majority of models in the box.
You also get these, a sprue for the Grots, and one each for the two leaders.
My Space Woof player has had a quick look at the Wolf Guard and Grey Hunters, and she says she cannot tell any difference between them and Space Woofs that have been produced before in plastic. Looking at the Grots, I cannot tell any difference between them and the ones you get seperately, and the Ammo Runt is certainly the same. The leaders are both original, though the poses may be very familiar to some of you.
In all, you get the following models;
Krom Dragongaze (Space Wolf Commander)
5 x Wolf Guard (all Terminators, one Heavy Flamer, one Thunder Hammer)
5 x Grey Hunters (one Plasma Pistol, one Plasma Gun, one Power Axe)
5 x Blood Claws (one Plasma Pistol, one Power Fist)
Grukk Face-Rippa (Ork Warboss with Power Klaw and Combi-Rokkit Weapon)
5 x Nobz (‘Eavy Armour, Kombi-Skorcha, two Power Klaws)
10 x Gretchin (plus Runt Herd)3 x Killa Kanz (weapons as detailed above)
And that is your lot – some few models compared to other box sets in the past, where you had 20 Boyz, 5 Nobz, Deffcoptas and a Warboss. At this price point, it is worth taking note.
So, should you buy it?
If you want the mini-rulebook, it is probably a yes, though you might hawk one on eBay in a week or two. If you want the continuation of Sanctus Reach, it is a definite yes. If you want to start building up decent armies, maybe not.
For my part, I wanted the mini-rulebook and the Killa-Kanz. The Sanctus Reach material was a nice surprise, and I am glad I have it. The Grots I can always use in my ever-growing Ork force, and the Nobz mean I can now have silly numbers of them (and perhaps qualify for the odd Apocalypse formation here and there). The Warboss is actually a problem, as I already have the models I need for the two Warbosses my army(ies) needs. I may just paint him up in the suggestd Goff colours for a possible Goff addition to my army at a later date (which would be silly, as that would be the third clan, and just who needs three clans of Orks..?).
So, for me, it was worth it – but then, I did not pay the full price for the set, far from it. Plus, I plan to claw back some of that by selling the Space Woofs seperately (I am a Dark Angel player, I was never going to paint them!). If you are interested in some Space Woofs, drop me a line…
As for you… well, you have to make your own choice. What is here is very well produced and presented. But £75 is also quite a bit of money.