The Thunderfire Canon is a pretty awesome unit. It's got some major firepower backed by a stern techmarine. You can roll em on to the field or drop them from a pod (with the latter it can be so much fun).
Although fun and pretty nasty on the field, it's not a unit that I really warm up to so I probably won't run them much but for those days I just wanna change stuff up, I wanted to have some on hand for the armies that can use them.
The unfortunate thing about it is that they come in two flavors from GW, old metal model or craptastically Finecast delicious. Neither of the two options I find tempting enough to whip out the wallet and laying down cash for it without going on a five day tirade of GW hate.
I can make some conversions from scratch but really, who has the time between a life sucking job and all the painting and building? Not to mention I'm in the middle of Assassin's Creed right now.
So there are two alternatives I've found that I really like. I'll follow up this blog post with a video later when I get the models in. For now, let's take a look at them here.
Mantic Games: Forgefather Hailstorm CanonThis is a great alternative at a pretty decent price. Of course, you'll have to supply your own techmarine but we'll get to that later. Mantic Games is a company that makes tons of cool stuff as well as their own line of games including Dreadball and Deadzone. You'll find a lot of these models can be used as alternatives for other games out there as well.
This baby works great for and alternative to the Thunderfire Canon but again, you'll have to supply your own techmarine because last time I check, there aren't any Squats in 40k no more. (Bastards!). This is a pretty affordable alternative and cheaper I think compared to getting the Finecast model. Listed on their website for $19.99 (£12.49) and they even sell it in a 3 pack deal for $60.00 (£30.00). Ok, so that's not much of a deal for us peeps in the USA but our British buddies are cashing in on that one.
The good news for us USA folks is that I got mine over at frpgames,com for only $15.98.
Hitech Miniatures: Hellfire CanonI'm an alternative model seeker. I just can't get enough of some of the badassery that's out there and available to use to play the games I play. Mostly to put some variety in my armies (even for Warmachine and Malifaux) or to replace anything that I can only get in Finecast. Hitech Miniatures is one of my favorite companies that I always look to.
Yes, it's a little more expensive but they really put out some awesome looking stuff. In this case, we're talking about the Hellfire Canon.
Again, you would have to supply your own Techmarine if you don't like the crouching guy that comes with it. Otherwise, you can slap on some servo looking arms to it and you're good.
The Hellfire Canon is about $27.00 (€19.80) which I got for $29.50 at frpgames,com. Why it came out to that price is beyond me. I can only assume it's the importing and VAT fees you have to go through ordering in Euroland.
There's some other good news. One of the things I find that would be a pain to scratch build one is the tracks. The canon part is no big deal and thank goodness that Hitech Miniatures solves that problem for me. They have two models of only the tracks you can buy to build your own canon. The first one is the Omikron Chasis for about $10.00 (€6.99) and I got it from frpgames,com for $10.49.
Unlike the chasis on the Hellfire Canon, you can see the wheels and cogs on this one:
However, if you like the chasis on the Hellfire Canon, you can get the URSUS chasis for about $11.00 (€7.99) as shown here:
Techmarine To Tech my CannonI'm going to look into techmarine alternatives in another article, either buying an alternative model or finding a quick and easy way to convert one, after all, what is a Techmarine but a regular space marine with extra mechanical limbs for those long lonely nights?
However, I just want to put it out here now that Hitech Miniatures saves the day again and offers their Xatranor Fav as an alternative:
This baby however, is quite hefty on the cost factor going for $26.00 (€19.00) which cost me $28.49 at frpgames,com. Go figure! But I have to say, this is one sweet looking model. It can do for some more servo arms maybe but since he really is just a lowly techmarine gunner, I think we can get away with it.
So I hope this helped you out in some way if you are interested in running a Thunderfire Canon unit. There are alternative out there that I think look better than the actual model itself from GW. We do have a choice and that's a grand thought!
Have you picked up any alternative Thunderfire Canon models or converted or scratched built one yourself? Let me know! Until then, see ya out there!