Skaven Warpfire-Cannon

This page contains the old (5th edition) rules for the warpcannon. For the new rules look here.

HISTORY

The warpfire cannon The Warpfire Cannon is an invention of the young Warlock Engineer Jagash Stripeskin. By its friendship with the clan Moulder he could receive special giant rats, which are so strong that they can pull a giant wooden chariot.
Jagash developed a special Warpfire cannon. A cannon with an enormous kill potential. This device laid out for the defense of fortresses, has an enormous weight. Since one cannot gain much fame with the defense, Jagash developed a plan for an offensive weapon. Jagash fastened the cannon on a wood rack. At this rack he attached then wheels. At this point Jagash could use its friendship with clan Moulder, because no regiment wanted to push a untested war machine which contains more than 40 gallons of highly explosive liquid fuel.
Now Jagash plans to destroy and enslave whole Ork clans with his marvelous new machine. The first tests on enslaved Orks were very promising.

MOVEMENT

Up to seven special bred giant rats are dragging the wagon.
The giant rats move it like a normal chariot. The normal movement rate is 4 ". For each killed rat this is reduced by 1 ", so that the car cannot move any more when only three or less rats are remaining.
If the wagon ever runs into an obstacle like a wall or building, a wood or difficult ground it will suffer D6 S6 hits wich are randomly distributed between the wagon and it's crew.

WARPFIRECANNON ATTACK

As long as still one member of the crew lives, the cannon can deliver round a devastating shot each. The crew can swivel the weapon on it's mount and can thus even fire to the rear. A pressure regulator and the flexible mount of the cannon allows to fire at different distance more accurate than with a standard Warpfire thrower.
You will need the long teardrop-shaped dragonfire template. The template is placed so that its rounded end is pointing at the target and the pointed end is touching the cannon. The gunner or any other model of the crew must be able to see the target.
To determine the distance where the Warpfire lands roll with up to and including 5 dice. The template is then moved forward in as many inches as the sum of the dice. If you did roll one or more ones something has gone wrong. Roll on the appropriate list.
The cannon cannot be fired when the wagon is in a HtH combat because the crew is to busy defending itself.

Damage

Each model that more is covered more than 50% is hit. Models only touched are hit on a 4+. Any model hit suffers a strength 5 hit with a -2 save modifier from he warpflame. A wounded model loosed D3 wounds.
Any regiment that suffers casualties has to make a panic test or flee immediately just as with a normal warpfire thrower.

Rolling one 1

D6 throw Effect
1 Kaboom! The cannon explodes and the weapon crew is killed. The whole upper platform with the firing mechanism is obliterated but like a miracle the rest of the wagon is undamaged.
2-3 A valve is stuck and no shot leaves the cannon this round, even though a frustrated Skaven gunner kicks it. You can shoot again next round.
4-5 The pressure was way too high. Roll again for the distance of this shot but use two more dice than you did in this roll (even if you use more than 5 dice.
6 The trigger is stuck and so the cannon will shoot next round with at least 3 dice even if you are in a hand to hand combat. The shot of this round goes off normally.

Rolling two 1

D6 throw Effect
1-2 Kaboom! The Cannon explodes. A large mushroom cloud remains where former the wagon stood. Only a burned ruin remains of the wagon and its crew.
Every model in a 5" radius suffers a Strength 4 hit due to the shock wave.
3-4 An Explosion in one of the fuel pipes frightens the rats to the death.
They are immediately running 3D6 inch in a random direction. At the end of the movement the Wagon explodes in a spectacular explosion destroying it.
Flying fragments cause a Strength 4 hit on every model in a 4" radius.
5-6 The tank is broken and now leaking fuel. A small explosion and the following fire kills the whole crew but the frightened rats are dragging the wagon 6 inch in every friendly movement phase in a straight line.
Even though all Skaven are dead the wagon can still fight if it hits something (even friends) or is attacked.

Rolling three 1

D6 throw Effect
1-2 The explosion fires the whole wagon 4D6" in a random direction. All models in the way of the fireball suffer a Strenght 7 hit which causes D6 wounds. The path burns until the end of the turn. It is impossible to cross or even see trough the smoke.
3-4 Kaboom! The Cannon explodes. A large mushroom cloud remains where former the wagon stood. Only a burned ruin remains of the wagon and its crew.
Every model in a 5" radius suffers a Strength 4 hit due to the shock wave.
5-6 An Explosion in one of the fuel pipes frightens the rats to the death.
They are immediately running 3D6 inch in a random direction. At the end of the movement the Wagon explodes in a spectacular explosion destroying it.
Flying fragments cause a Strength 4 hit on every model in a 4" radius.

Rolling four or more 1

D6 throw Effect
1-5 The wagon starts on it's cosmic voyage. You can follow the way of the flying machine for three minutes as it travels to the moon.
Remove the wagon from the game.
6 Kaboom! The Cannon explodes. A large mushroom cloud remains where former the wagon stood. Only a burned ruin remains of the wagon and its crew.
Every model within 5" suffers a Strength 4 hit due to the shock wave.

The crew

Wagon

When the wagon moves into contact with a unit it stops moving immediately and will inflict D6+2 hits on the unit. The hits are worked out at Strength 7 before any attacks form either side.
These hits represent the damage, which a 5000 pound of heavy wood causes, if rolling over enemies. The damage is caused only in the first combat round the wagon charged.

FIGHTING THE WARPFIRE-CANNON

The Warpfire Cannon is fought in hand-to-hand combat exactly like a chariot. The enemy models fighting it compare their Weapon Skills to the highest Weapon Skill of its crew. If all the crew are slain the Doomwheel counts as having a WS of 0.

Hits from shooting and hand-to-hand combat are randomly allocated between the Cannons component parts as shown in the chart below. Roll a seperate dice for each hit scored and then resolve damage against the part that has been hit.
D6 throw Hand-to-Hand Combat Shooting
1 Packmaster Packmaster
2 Packmaster Packmaster
3 Crew Tank
4 Tank Wagon
5 Wagon Wagon
6 Rats Rats
In a hand to hand combat both the crew and the dragging giant rats are fighting. As with a chariot they are able to fight against every model in base contact with the wagon.
Profile M WS BS S T W I A LD
Wagon 0-4 - - - 6 4 - - -
Tank - - - - 4 special - - -
Crew 5 4 4 3 3 3 4 3 10
Packmaster 5 4 4 3 3 1 4 1 10
Rats 6 3 0 3 2 7 3 7 10
The Packmaster and the rest of the Crew are wearing light armor, giving them a 6+ armor save. The Packmaster wields a whip (counts as normal hand weapon), the rest of the crew is armed with swords and clubs. The giant rats are armed with sharp teeth.

Wagon: When the wagon suffers 4 wounds it is destroyed and the flying pieces of wood and burning fuel kills the whole crew. The surviving giant rats are busy eating the (well-done) corpses and don't fight for the rest of the battle.

Tank: When the tank is hit roll with a D6 on the following table.
D6 throw Effect
1 The hit lightens the fuel. The whole wagon is destroyed in a spectacular explosion. Every model in a 5 inch radius suffers a Strenght 5 hit from flying wood pieces.
2 The tank now leaks fuel and the wagon starts to burn. Every zone of the wagon (tank, wagon, crew, packmaster, rats) suffers a Strength 4 hit in every Skaven movement turn.
3-4 The hull of the tank is weakened. Roll again on this chart at the start of every skaven movement turn.
5-6 A fuel hose is hit. The cannon cannot shoot any more.

Packmaster: If the Packmaster is killed the wagon is out of control. It will now move it's full movement rate in a random direction in every Skaven movement turn. The Packmaster cannot be replaced by a normal crewmember but you can still fire the cannon.

Crew: The crew of three Skavens is used for targeting and firing the cannon. They all argue what target to hit next and might burn better. If a shot doesn't hit the unlucky crewmember is immediately switched and has to wait for it's turn.
The cannon can be fired even with only one surviving member.

The crew

For an other destructive Skaven device, the feared Black Arc, look at Bob Lippmans page. He also has some good articles about modelling you own figures. And here is his logo:
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Last updated August 22 2012