Hellhound

Submitted By: Captain Spaff Date: September 15, 2005, 11:36:05 AM Views: 3239
Summary: An Analysis of the Helhound under the 4th Edition Codex.

Overview

The Hellhound is essentially a super-flamethrower on wheels that projects a fountain of flame up to 24" away. This weapon, aptly named the Inferno Cannon can be absurdly destructive to any force. Although, there is a minor diminishing return on forces with a 3+ save due to Armour Penetration.

Upgrades

There are approximately a dozen upgrades available for the Hellhound, but few are actually worthwhile, and even less are worth their points in nearly every game.

Extra Armour Spaff Rating: 5
 The difference between Crew Shaken and Crew Stunned results generally aren't noticeable with other vehicles, since they usually aren't aiming to get close to the enemy and chance being hit with a rear or side plasma shot, but a Hellhound has to get into their faces, and a round of no movement can result in the vehicle not accomplishing anything. Extra Armour can be useful in this regard since it will allow you to continue moving, but you may be unable to fire your weapons.

Hunter-Killer Missile Spaff Rating: 1
 This is an expensive hit-or-miss choice that is entirely optional. The only real advantage of having this is so that you can fire some sort of armament while trying to close the distance to use the Inferno Cannon, but at its cost it is generally far too much of a gamble for a single use item.

Pintle-Weapons Spaff Rating: 3
 This is a moderately useful upgrade for a vehicle that will allow you to fire up to 36" if you have a Heavy Stubber, which is the obvious choice over the Storm Bolter. You pay a few points extra but gain a 12" range, and an extra shot. Due to the Hellhounds primary weapon isn't an Ordnance you can generally fire this in conjunction with the hull-mounted heavy bolter every turn.
     
Rough Terrain Modification Spaff Rating: 2
The shortest distance between two points is always a straight line, and sometimes that line will cross over some unfavorable areas. This is a cheapie upgrade that can permit you to do some ballsy moves across areas of terrain your opponent may not suspect you will strike from. If you have a few points after compiling your list this could be something to invest in.

Smoke Launchers Spaff Rating: 5
 This is a cheap and effective method of protecting your investment, and at its point cost you can't afford not to take them. Hellhounds will usually draw an absurdly large amount of munitions, and Smoke Launchers while not a definite will help keep the vehicle alive by decreasing any penetrating hits into a glancing. Hellhounds arguably get the most use out of Smoke Launchers, since they do not suffer from the fact that they are unable to fire their expensive long range ordnance weapons. For the most part you will only lose out on a single turn of H. Bolter & Stubber fire.
   
Track Guards Spaff Rating: 1
An immobilized vehicle that has a maximum range of 24" with its big killer weapon is for all purposes absolutely useless. This is one of the most expensive choices and after adding up the extra armor, stubber, rough terrain mod, with smoke launchers may make you wince a little at the cost. Unfortunately the price cost only guarantees that you will be able to prevent an immobilized result 50% of the time.
 
Usage

Like everything else in the guard redundancy is key, and fielding two hellhounds is obviously better than one. A single hellhound is very likely to draw most every heavy weapon in range to it, especially if you're beginning to get close to the enemy, but sometimes you don't have much choice because of points or more likely the Force Organization Chart.

When fielding Hellhounds it is important that you mix it in with other high priority targets such as a Demolisher. Both of these tanks are globally despised, the only significant difference is that a Demolisher might be able to soak up a few Lascannon blasts. A hellhound won't be as lucky.

Odd-ball Tactics

Walling
The Hellhound is very unusual with its armor values in the manner that they are both the same in the front and side. This means that you can, and should, make use out of the sheer size of the vehicle to bring a sudden halt to an inevitable assault.

Two Hellhounds facing each others rear armor can create an impassable 14 inch; AV12 wall. This leaves the assaulting force two options. Close the rest of the ground and face two Inferno cannon templates, or go around the long way as your infantry takes potshots at them with lasrifles and heavy weapons, or continue towards an objective.

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