SRM’s Ongoing Imperium Review: Week 52

Imperium is a weekly hobby magazine from Hachette Partworks. In this 80-week series, our intrepid magazine-receiver will be reviewing each individual issue, its included models, and gaming materials. A Premium subscription was provided to Goonhammer for review purposes.

I don’t know what to write this week so I’m just gonna link to some art I drew of a Necron farting back in 2011. Hell yeah.

The Magazine

Triarch Stalker
Triarch Stalker. Credit: Chris Cowie

We learn all about Triarch Stalkers (erroneously called “Triach Talkers” in a boxout describing their wargear) and what their whole steez is this week. These scuttling war machines are piloted by Triarch Praetorians, who are the Silent King’s eyes and ears in the cosmos. They basically watch their subordinates from on top of these big bugbots and make sure everything they do is up to the Silent King’s standards. Naturally, we have a battle record for them:

From the smoke strode Akthar the Silent, riding proudly atop his Triarch Stalker, Obsidian Predator. The Triarch Praetor looked down at the shambling mechanical masses of Necron Warriors marching alongside him and felt a pang of disgust. How could they have fallen so far? How could these rotting machines be the best his dynasty could muster? Derek’s Mom’s Dining Table IV was a backwater, this was well known, but conquest should still be a matter of pride and pageantry. These legions were workmanlike at best. Akthar would have let out a sigh, were he not known as Akthar the Silent. Titles still meant something, at least to the Triarch.

Our next page is an Inquistorial report on how cool Imperial Knights are. As a known heraldry appreciator, I concur. We’re given the extremely short version of how the feudal Knight worlds came to be; long-lost cousins to the Imperium only brought into the fold some thousands of years later. The next page details a variety of the weapons you’ll find on a typical Questoris-class Imperial Knight: the giant Reaper Chainsword, Avenger Gatling Cannon, Stormspear Missile Launcher, and so on. A bit of art shows the sheer scale of these things pretty well, and there’s a little bit of Imperial body horror from the in-universe quote about jacking into your big robot friend. Sorry this is a week late for Mechahammer, Greg. I’ll make sure Hachette gets the memo next year.

Lastly, we learn more about Triarch units and how they fit into the Necron hierarchy. The original Triarchs were a trio of Phaerons ruling Necron society, while the Triarch units we know now were their loyal servants. With the Silent King being the last of this triumvirate, the Triarch Praetorians now work for him alone. When the Necrontyr empire fell and the Necron race went into hibernation, the Triarchs stayed awake, waiting for the return of their king. Now, they follow around all Necron dynasties, making sure everything proceeds according to the Silent King’s plan, either on foot or atop Triarch Stalkers. I like this little subfaction within the Necrons; it’s rich with history and makes them more than just “those Necrons with mean sticks” or whatever.

The Hobby Materials

Triarch Stalker. Credit Rockfish
Triarch Stalker. Credit Rockfish

This week we get the first part of two (hence “partworks”) to build a Triarch Stalker. This kit is very of its time (that time being 2011) and as a result it isn’t quite as tightly engineered as a more modern kit. There is little space wasted on the sprue, but you have to painstakingly assemble the driver’s separate head and neck bits, his two part spine, and sundry ball joints that may make lining him up with his control panel a pain. The walker itself also has these huge ball jointed spider legs that are intended to be left mobile like an action figure. Weapon swaps shouldn’t be too tricky, and a number of subassemblies are dictated in the instructions to make the painting process easier. We’ll get into those more in the next issue when the painting instructions are included, but for now know this: you’ll likely wish this thing had a base.

The Gaming Materials

Sisters of Battle Canoness
Sisters of Battle Canoness Credit: Dionycia

This week, we learn all about Strategems, one of the hallmarks of modern 40k. A brief tutorial is given for how to keep track of command points, and we get the page from the core rules describing the command reroll, overwatch, and counter-offensive stratagems. There is also a page full of command point counters for you to cut out, should you want a bunch of triangle-shaped Pogs. We’ll get to use those paper Doritos this week in Destroyer Assault, this issue’s mission. The Necrons are pissed, and they’re going to unleash their destroyers on the Adepta Sororitas stronghold. A Canoness, 7 Battle Sisters, 3 Seraphim, Repentia Superior, 3 Repentia, 2 Arco-Flagellants, 1 Penitent Engine, and 3 Aggressors on loan from the Ultramarines must defend themselves from a Necron Plasmancer, their 2 Cryptothralls, 1 Canoptek Reanimator, 10 Warriors, and 6 Scarab Swarms. You read that correctly – Destroyer Assault features no Destroyers with which to do any Assaulting. I’m guessing two issues got their missions and descriptions mixed up or something. The mission has symmetrical deployments with 3 objectives along the center line, and you get points each turn for holding them. It’s nothing special, but it’s a simple Matched Play-style mission to get to grips with the newly introduced command point mechanics.

Final Verdict 52/90:

Credit: ZuultheCat

Triarch Stalkers are sitting pretty at $60 right now, so getting half of one for $13.95 is pretty decent. This issue and its impending sequel will complete the kit for $27.90, so you’re looking at over 50% savings. I’m no mathemagician, but that sounds rather good to me. These big spiderbots aren’t in any of the currently available value-added boxes either, so this is a cost-efficient way to get one for sure. The rest of this issue is pretty by the book, but I enjoyed the insight into what Triarchs are all about and I’m always happy to read about giant stompy robots.

See you next issue, warhams.

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