So let’s talk Storm Talon tactics, and what this new model can bring to Space Marine codex- a much needed option to compete against newer codexes or just more eye-candy and fluff for the table?
First thing you notice with the model is that it is really tiny on the table, maybe I’m just used to seeing lots of IG Valks and Storm Ravens to put it in perspective. Looking at the stats side of the model you essentially have a super charged razorback like gunboat.
You have some nice weapon option that can put out some really focused dakka, are very fast moving with some melta protection, but at the price of AV 11. Tactically we are going to have to balance this out on the table, and be a bit conservative in how we employ the Storm Talon. Occupying an often unused fast attack slot is also nice- no competition for tanks or terminators…
Ok, first problem and the biggest problem with the model is the height itself. Moving around shooting means you are going to be shot at, and gaining a cover save through terrain is going to be hard since it’s easy to see the model- its height also opens up multiple lanes of return fire unless you are playing on a bard packed with high terrain. AV 11 doesn’t help, and the model + upgrades are a bit pricey.
Play it as a direct gunboat as I played around with and you will have mixed to disappointing results.
Play it as an escort craft or flank attacking unit and now we are talking.
Start with two or three ‘talons in the center of the table with the rest of your forces and push the attack right down the center with your land raiders and razorbacks/rhinos, while the ‘Talons go supersonic to the opposite side of the table side for a flank attack for starters.
That said, I can see (and will be further trying) this unit in the escort craft role as part of a Space Marine Null Deployment army- something that with Khanh becomes a further possibility now. The key here is that it is tied to the unit entering play- perfect for adding more shots to key units- say like a land raider coming in where you want to move and assault- the storm talon can enter play at the same time and add its firepower to break open what you need and give the termies in the land raider something to assault. Linked to the arriving units, you can assign the extra firepower to units that need it depending on the mission and guarantee that they enter play at the same time- that’s the value in assisting in Null Deployment that attracts me the most to the Storm Talon.