Kill Team’s Striking Scorpions Are Better Than They Look

The Aeldari Striking Scorpions took a lot of flak when they were first revealed to be gracing the new Warhammer 40,000: Kill Team box alongside brand new Primaris Scouts. Part of the backlash was due to its marketing, with the trainee Space Marines described by Games Workshop as “more than capable of tackling the Asuryani threat,” despite the fact that, at any other time, the Aspect Warriors would utterly trounce the Initiates.



The new models for the xenos stealth attackers also seemed a little uninspiring. The poses seem to mimic those of the current resin models rather than trying something new and exciting, and the fact every single model has a tactical rock to stand on was rightfully ridiculed.

Note: Tactical rocks are pieces of terrain sculpted onto models’ feet in order to give them a more dynamic pose with a stable base. However, they’re often seen by the community as ‘cheating’, a way to create a cheap imitation of movement at the expense of more clever sculpting.

I’m here to correct the narrative. Having built five of the new Striking Scorpions, they’re a joy to put together. There are still a couple of issues, but if you’ve ever built the resin versions, these will be a breath of fresh air. I’m sure those of you with more time than I can even hide the tactical rocks among basing or foliage, too.

The most important change to the Striking Scorpions is the material they’re made from. Resin is a nightmare to work with, and the old Scorpions were one of the worst offenders. In order to clean mould lines from their chainswords, you had to carefully scrape a craft knife along each individual tooth of a chainsword. One wrong move and the tooth would be torn right off, leaving an egregious gap in the Aeldari weapon.

warhammer 40k kill team salvation two plastic striking scorpions close up

That’s no longer the case. While there are still some awkward mould lines, the inherent sturdiness of plastic means that you don’t have to worry about accidents unless you’re using a box cutter to tidy up your minis, in which case it’s probably your own fault. The finished models look great, and the Kill Team kit is a clear upgrade on the old resin.

Tip: If you want to avoid a speckly finish, don’t attempt a zenithal highlight with a rattle can.

That’s not to say the box is without problems. The tactical rocks are particularly annoying, but you can deal with them if you’re clever enough. Worse is the monoposes of the Scorpions themselves. While each looks pretty dynamic on their own, the squad of ten that come in the Kill Team box (and that you’ll want to run in regular 40K games if you’re playing optimally) will repeat each pose twice. Pieces are glued on at awkward points that make even simple conversions tricky, and the overall effect leaves a lot to be desired.

The worst offender is the Exarch, as his body double is a regular dude. There are more swappable parts on this one, but the posing is still incredibly similar, especially if your Exarch carries a Scorpion Chainsword rather than the Scorpion Claw.

warhammer 40k kill team salvation plastic striking scorpion exarch with scorpions claw

This is a running theme with modern Games Workshop kits, and a problem that extends to the Primaris Scouts too, although they’re boring models anyway so nobody will look close enough to notice doubles. I long for the days of the sixth edition Sternguard Veteran kit that contained 120 possible components to make just five soldiers. It was an upgrade kit for Squad Sergeants, it was a convertor’s paradise, it was one of my favourite kits Games Workshop ever produced. Now, you’re lucky to get two or three extra pieces for your bits box, and that’s a shame.

Even if the days of plentiful spare parts and customisation possibilities only limited by your imagination are gone, the new Striking Scorpions are a big upgrade over the previous iteration. They’ll be joining my Aeldari Exodite force with no conversion necessary, camouflaged in the forest like Predator, floating like butterflies and stinging like, well… scorpions.

Thanks to Games Workshop for sending these models for review. Kill Team: Salvation is available to pre-order now, and releases January 13, 2024.

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