View Full Version : Harpoon Missile - 40k Titans

Puffin Magician
21-12-2005, 21:45
In my continuing quest to play Epic: 40,000 with 40k rules, I've naturally had to look at Titans and the plethora of weapons bitz that were available to them. Most are rather simple to wedge into 40k; Mega Battlecannon here, Longbarrel Whirlwind there... but then there's the Harpoon Missile.

As hard as I look I can't find anything even close to a description of this weapon, simply what it did in the game. It was a missile, and it took over enemy Titans. Okay, how exactly? Well, here's my take on some sensible rules for a 40k version of the weapon. Don't start with the crap about "Titans belong in Epic!", because obviously that has no effect on me. I'll be building a Warlord [eventually], and this will be one of it's modular weapons. Deal with it! :p Onto the rules:


The Harpoon Missile is little more than a cramped boarding torpedo adapted from Imperial Navy technology. It carries a team of elite Adeptus Titanicus trained especially in titan-assault, and are familiar [to a degree] with the layouts of enemy Titans. After breaching the enemy titan's armour with the Harpoon's melta-bore nosecone, they will cut and kill their way through the enemy crew and gain control of the titan. It can never be fired at a Titan with intact Void Shields, since that would be a messy end for the Harpoon and it's crew.

Harpoon Missile
54" s- ap- Heavy 1, One Shot
The Harpoon takes up 1 Arm Weapon location on an Imperial Warlord Titan.

Extremely Rare: A Harpoon Missile and it's elite crew are very rare, even in the largest or most well-equipped Titan Legion. Only 1 Harpoon Missile may ever be chosen in one army or on one "side" [in a Mega Battle, etc].

Worthy Targets: The Harpoon Missile may only ever be fired at an Imperial, Chaos or Ork Titan that has 6 or more Structure Points.

"...Make it count!": Needless to say the Harpoon must hit it's target on the first [and only] try to be worth anything at all. It has many targetting systems as well as directional rockets to alter it's course towards the enemy. When rolling to hit with the Harpoon Missile, you may re-roll the dice. If you miss, the Harpoon has ricocheted/exploded/flown into a mountain and has no further game effect.

Boarding Torpedo: If the Harpoon Missile hits the enemy titan, you must roll to determine the fate of the boarding party. Players each roll a d6. The defending player adds the result to the number of Structure Points their titan had at the start of the game. The attacker adds his roll to 8; the number of troops in the torpedo.

• If the defender wins, then the boarding party has attacked the crew and damaged the titan, but have been killed in the process. The titan suffers a single Glancing Hit and the Harpoon has no further effect.

• If the attacker wins, the boarding party has succeeded and have gained control of the enemy titan; count it as a part of your force from now on. The enemy titan counts as being destroyed for Victory Points purposes.

• If it's a tie, the defender's titan functions as normal next turn, but suffers a Glancing Hit as the boarding party destroys the titan's innards either intentionally or as a byproduct of fighting the enemy crew. Roll again at the end of the turn to see how the struggle ends. This could result in the two sides battling it out inside the Titan for the rest of the game, with the attacker possibly bringing the titan down in the process!

I'd like some feedback from anyone interested in Titans or experience with these things in Epic, since there's only my imagination and the thought of game balance to go on. I'm a bit fuzzy on range [Unlimited like Epic is just insane IMO], and points... this thing is obviously scary to unshielded Gargants and Warlords, but it's not exactly reliable [Hitting on the first try with Twinlinked Bs4] and takes a weapon location that would otherwise go to something that would kill a lot of things, every turn [Gatling Blaster, etc] for 1/3 the price.


21-12-2005, 22:34
Ummm, if that thing works, your opponent might as well pack up. You just took his titan, and the things are too evpensive to play a lot of.
I would also point out that if the lowest structure points it can be fired at is 6, there's a good chance it won't work at all. Your opponent has a nice shot at beating you in the roll-off and then you wasted 350 points on a glancing hit.
I might consider having a roll for control each turn, as the warriors inside take and lose vital systems. If you want to go nuts with it, roll off on each player's turn.
I would say if the rolls are within 1 of each other there's no winner, just because I think that a titan boarding action should usually take a while and leave it doing little while the crews fight it out.
Of course, you could just ignore this post and keep going... ;)

22-12-2005, 01:55
be cooler if there was an "interior of the titan" board and a mini-game played out to decide the striken titan's fate... but that'd be too complicated, probably

Puffin Magician
22-12-2005, 08:20
First off this is intended to be used in huge, rare games; >10K per side with people playing on a gymnasium floor.

Secondly, if you think this is overpowered then you would've shat yourself when you read the Epic rules:

1. Unlimited Range.
2. Titan makes a "save" with a -2svmod. If it fails the Harpoon is lodged in the Titan.
3. Roll a d6. On a 2+ the Attacker controls the Titan.

I think mine's a bit more fair than that.

I would also point out that if the lowest structure points it can be fired at is 6, there's a good chance it won't work at all.
Again, I'm trying to limit it's effectiveness. The simple "shoot things and then steal them" rules of the Epic Harpoon are frustratingly simple. Even firing at an enemy Warlord Titan you could easily win the roll off; if I roll higher, your Titan is mine. I made it a fixed number so things like Mega Gargants and Emperor Titans can't be affected by this weapon. Things smaller than 6 Str Pts and Eldar Titans are too small to be fired at.

I might consider having a roll for control each turn, as the warriors inside take and lose vital systems. I think that a titan boarding action should usually take a while and leave it doing little while the crews fight it out.You do roll every turn as long as the crew isn't successful/killed; I don't want the Titan changing hands every few minutes. It's all the way or nothing at all.

but that'd be too complicated, probablyJust a bit, yeah.

22-12-2005, 16:22
I don't mind it as-is if you add a minimum game size for its use. If I saw it in a "normal" game where there might be 1-3 titans at most, I would declare my opponent the biggest beard in the country, pack up, and never play the guy again. Anything like this in 3000 or less would be too overpowering.

Puffin Magician
23-12-2005, 15:33
It's not a matter of simply justifying the weapon by having a 10,000pt game or my opponent having several Titans, I want to make the weapon a decent option because of what it does compared to other choices. There's nothing normal about a Harpoon Missile, let alone a Warlord Titan, or really Titans in 40k at all.

The Harpoon is something that would be reserved for campaign megabattles, 3000pt games are nothing compared to this; the Warlord itself is roughly 2000pts after purchasing weapons.

Some actual discussion of the weapon would be appreciated, rather than simply "it's too powerful" or "make it über-rare". I know there are Titanicus players on these boards!

24-12-2005, 19:41
I still think making it easier to get a draw on the roll-off would be a nice touch. This sticks both the players with a rough decision: That titan might be mine, but it might go to my opponent and right now it's vulnerable...
On the I have 4+ titans scale, this could be a very fun weapon to see on the board (so to speak).

29-07-2007, 08:11
How about a battle of wills every turn? Each player rolls a d6 and adds it to the Ld value, who ever wins controls the titan. If one side wins 3 consecutive rolls they take permanent control of the titan.

At least that way the owning player still has a chance of taking it back (infact I would have something relying on structure points - say give the missile an arbitrary structure point value - 5. This is the modifer they add to a d6 roll and add that to their Ld. Every winning Ld test inflicts a SP of 'damage' on the other unit. Who ever reaches 0 loses, and the other player controls the titan).


29-07-2007, 09:28
How about, hmmmm, realising that it really is quite a bad idea (i.e. the one who came up with the Harpoon Missile idea had a bad idea). I mean, seriously, according to the fluff Imperials have a hard time getting many ork weapons to work, even when taken to a lab. How are they supposed to ge a big frekkin gargant working as they intend? The arent really controlled by a mind impule unit or something like that. Its lots and lots of grots, meks and boys who make those things do what you want.

And trying to take over a Chaos titan? I can imagine that its quite rare for the Princeps of chaos titans to not have grown into the titan. Or worse, some titans are possessed by daemons. You dont just walk in, smack the daemon on the head and take back the gamepad!

And speaking of how Imperial titans are controlled. If I remember correctly, it takes a long time for a Princeps to get the machinespirit of a titan to obey his every command. They are supposed to share the traits of wolfs, bear or whatever, depending on model.
All this goes for Eldar and tyranid titans too ofc, since its really the same thing with them as with chaos and imperials.

I mean, I know im sounding like negative nancy here, but there is just no way a small boardingparty could take over an enemy titan in the heat of battle, according to all the fluff I have read about titans.

Puffin Magician
30-07-2007, 01:45
Odd that you necro'd this thread today Hellbore, I was looking at this late last night. I was thinking of rules similar to yours, but it gets much more complex the more fair & realistic you make them. Could just sod the idea since it'd only really work vs. Gargants [to blow them apart from within] or "renegade" Imperial Titans [to take them back]. Agreed about Chaos Titans.

Simply put, I wanted rules because there's a model for it in Epic. All this Apocalypse stuff is basically my 8-year dream come true of fielding oudlandish units from Epic: 40,000. Regularly.

There is just no way a small boarding party could take over an enemy titan in the heat of battle...I figure 8 Ad. Titanicus Skitarii specializing in seriously compromising enemy titans would easily be a match for a crew of, say 12? The titan crew isn't trained, close-quarter assault unit - they're Engineers and a few Servitors.

...according to all the Fluff I have read about titans.I've read some fluff about titans that's absolutely ridiculous, so we can agree to disagree.