Scrapwagons Away!

With the Ork Codex release a few months behind us now, everyone has their favorite units. For me, the biggest winner is the Scrapjet and its crazy output of Rokkits and Big Shoota shells. The stock model’s got all the trademark zaniness that’s been packed into every square millimeter of the new Ork vehicle lot, and that’s to be appreciated, but my heart is that of a Mek and I need conversions to live. I love the ramshackle design of some of the other new Ork vehicles, but their tabletop representation’s a little lackluster for my taste, so the idea of the Scrapwagon was born. A bit of custom background for the creation*, and we were good to go:

The Scrapwagon, like many of Big Mek Hef’s creations, was an invention not so much of necessity as annoyance. Constantly bothered by mobs of over-enthusiastic speed freaks for upgrades to the leaky engines of their ramshackle racing jalopies, the hoary old mek began to festoon these buggies with enormous amounts of weaponry as a “komplimentary upgrade.” Just as planned, Hef’s problem soon became a self-correcting one, with mad speed mobs blowing each other to bits on the track. Few remained alive to return to the mekshop for repairs, and those that did rarely had the teef to spare for more exotic requests, what with the Dok’s bill for replacement limbs that now inevitably followed a race.

Hef considered the situation resolved, and was left in peace for some time. However, as the Red Raiderz grew into the legendary Zagdakka’s Kamp, word of these “Scrapwagons” began to get around. Demand for up-gunned warbuggies grew, and much to Hef’s irritation, the build has became increasingly common among the variety of speed freak mercenaries in the Kamp. Despite the fact the Kamp’s resources have allowed him to pass this work on to subordinate Meks, the mere sight of a Scrapwagon can still cause the Big Mek a grudging headache.

While each Scrapwagon is something of a kustom job, Hef’s Wreckin’ Krew has more or less standardized the process for mass production. A rokkit kannon forms the primary armament, with a compliment of support weapons nailed on wherever they can fit. Another rokkit launcha is also typically added, fitted with a rudimentary targeting system that locks onto vehicles with uncanny accuracy (well, for an Ork), though it tends to malfunction against any other target. Early on, Hef resolved to “work out da kinks” in this system, a promise he seems to have absolutely no intent to follow through on.

Perhaps the most interesting quirk of Scrapwagon teams is the grot gunners that are found amongst the krew. Originally a result of the scrapwagon’s haphazard design – some of the support weapons were wedged into areas that only a diminutive gretchin could feasibly fit into – they’ve since become beloved mascots among their Ork teammates. Unlike most grots, a Scrapwagon gunner can confidently walk the streets of the Kamp knowing that they’ll remain free of hassle and harm – anyone that gives the lucky grot any trouble will have to answer to a gang of psychotic speed freeks!

So, there’s that. A holiday foray back to my homeland of Michigan brought a reunion BFG game with old buddy and Four Strands proprietor, Bozeman. After thoroughly kicking my ass across a vast expanse of the void, Bozeman was nice enough to buy me a Snazzwagon as a consolation prize Christmas present.

Merry Orksmas!

The big challenge here is weaponry – as the background notes, the Scrapjet’s a dang ol’ gunboat, armed with:

  • A massive Rokkit Kannon
  • A secondary Rokkit Launcha (with its own special rules)
  • Not one but two¬†twin Big Shootas – one of which is Grot-operated!
  • A ram that packs one hell of a punch

These all have to fit on the fairly sparse and already jam-packed frame of the Snazzwagon. How do you even divide it up? Who even fires what?

Before we get any further, though, I’d like to take a moment to proclaim upon the Boomdakka Snazzwagon’s design. It’s an astounding piece of engineering, complex while remaining both easy to build and sturdy, and above all it’s just a joy to look at. Seriously, just gaze upon this half-completed thing. Look at it with your unworthy human eyeballs:

Seriously, we live in a golden age of miniature design, everybody.

I decided that the primary weapon would live within the cab on the passenger side, which left the top weapon as a combined Ork-operated Big Shoota/Rokkit Launcha mount. Also, since the gunner is holding a molotov cocktail that’s manifestly not part of the Scrapwagon’s armament, those needed to be replaced as well. The outstretched arm seemed like a perfect place to put a wicked choppa, and I love the idea that despite being armed with enough ranged weaponry to bring down a Carnifex, the crew still regularly chooses to buzz some poor Guardsmen with their close combat weaponry.

So, that’s that! Here’s a preview of where the first Scrapwagon is at the moment:

Next up, I’ll need to add the Rokkit Kannon, which is still a mystery. Currently thinking that a modified Heavy Barrel Cannon from the Warmachine Defender seems like a good bet, but let me know what you think in the newly-added comment section below!

* More info on Zagdakka and his eponymous Kamp is on the way soon!

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