Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Eldar Night Spinner - Success or Fail?

So Games Workshop released the statistics for the new Eldar Night Spinner in the latest White Dwarf magazine.  I have to say at first I was really unimpressed.  I had been expecting something a lot better and I'll explain why after I list the pros and cons of the tank after the stat line.

Night Spinner
Slot: Heavy
Cost: 115
Type: Fast, Skimmer, Tank
Armor: F 12, S 12, R 10 BS 3
Weapon Load out: 
Twin-linked Shuriken Catapult
Night Spinner - Range: 72", S6, AP -, Large Blast, Rending.  Any units hit moves as in difficult and dangerous terrain during their next turn.


So when you first look at the weapon load out you think to what a piece of crap.  Gee, thanks GW for giving me a Warp Spider gun that is a large blast template.  However, let's break it down and examine how it can be used effectively.

1. Fast Skimmer Tank - it can move 12" and still fire it's Night Spinner turret or move 24" for objective contesting.
2. Long range weapon - it can hit anything on the board.
3. It is 1 strength higher than a Fire Prisms Large Blast template which is helpful against infantry and even tanks.
4. The blast is Rending, meaning it can autolift models on a roll of a 6.
5.  Synergy options - Roy pointed this out to me earlier today which I had not thought about.  You can shoot a unit of infantry or heavy infantry and the terrain becomes difficult and dangerous.  Your squad can assault them without penalty and when they move to engage you in close combat, every model has to take a difficult and dangerous terrain test which can further augment your success rate by removing casualties before the fight even starts.  It also allows you to restrict your opponents movement on multiple fronts since all it has to do it "hit" the vehicle not penetrate or glance. 

1.  Takes up a Heavy Support slot, even more importantly takes up a Fire Prism or Dark Reaper slot.
2.  115 points for a S6 large blast weapon.
3.  While it is Rending, it is still only Strength 6.  There is no versatility with the gun unlike the Fire Prism that can fire a large or small blast with variable strength and AP value.
4.  A lot of hype was generated for this tank and sadly it doesn't match the hype.  People were expecting something better and more exciting.  They didn't want a modified version of the Fire Prism and they most certainly did not want another tank taking up the already highly contested Eldar Heavy Support slots.  They really should have made this a Fast Attack vehicle.
5.  Not a transport.  People were also hoping for another type of small squad transport with maybe even an assault ramp (ha). 

Overall, I think the Night Spinner can not be counted as a Success or a Fail.  At least not yet, perhaps after a few games people will begin to see some better uses for them.  I personally will probably not be using it since I already have my Heavy Support slots filled and I recently dropped my Fire Prisms for other options.  I will probably proxy the Night Spinner in a few games just to see it but I really don't see it being a fixture in my army.