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27Oct/180

Warhammer 40,000 Speed Freeks

As part of Orktober, Games Workshop delivers a stand-alone boxed set of orkish racing - Speed Freeks! It was already announced back in August on Warhammer Fest Europe and there were rumours about a revival of Gorka Morka, so now we know what these were about.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

To be honest, when the rumours about a Gorka Morka game for this year made their round, I found it highly unlikely to be true, as we had Kill Team, Adeptus Titanicus and Rogue Trader (back then without the connotation to Kill Team) on the schedule, and a fourth game - at least in the size of a specialist game - in that time slot seemed rather unlikely.

Speed Freeks covers two speed mobs of 4 vehicles (3 Bikes incl. a Boss and a larger vehicle each) including two vehicle kits that are currently exclusive to this boxed set, the Shokkjump Dragsta and the Kustom Boosta-Blasta. It is set up as a fast paced racing rule set, spread on just 24 pages, so quick and easy to comprehend.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

What is it about?
Speed Freeks is set in the barren lands of Vigilus and covers the wild races of the Speedwaaagh! To participate in one of these races, each players field a speed mob of 4 models in total, consisting out of 3 Bikes and one of 6 vehicles (the only exception is the big race, where each player maneuvers a vehicle each). There isn't much lore to this. Not like in Gorka Morka, where the mobs gathered pieces of scrap metal and fought over being the dominant mob on Angelis, and maybe gather enough parts to leave the planet. The whole campaign, experience and collecting scrap etc. isn't part of Speed Freeks. This is purely concentrating on the racing.

For that reason this boxed set is self-containing, you have the entire rules you need, even for the miniatures that are not part of the box, but will be released as part of the Orktober novelties.

First Impression
When I received the box, I wasn't sure if it was properly packed as first, as the box lid was not fully covering the lower part of the box. But that is due to the fact that the lower part of the box is taller than the lid. So this seems like a design decision and not a production error, in case you were wondering as well. The box is quite heavy and loaded to the top with content.

You get two booklets, a 24 page rule set and an assembly guide. A lot of gaming material is included, like card decks, dashboards and screens, 20 custom Speed Freek dice (10 red and 10 yellow), a D8, data cards for warbikes and all of the 6 new vehicles and a huge load of tokens and templates.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

A big surprise is the gaming board for Speed Freeks, as these are huge. They are half the size of the Kill Team battle boards, but the double amount is included. So you end up with a field twice the size of a regular Kill Zone. The boards are full colour printed on both sides, one is a reddish desert and the other one a more sandy desert. With this design you could use them for all kinds of Kill Team / Warhammer 40,000 / Sci-Fi scenarios as well, for example battles of the Adeptus Mechanicus on Mars.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

And before you forget that this is miniature game, after seeing all those "board game" components, here's a varicoloured stack of sprues. As some of the other "starter" boxed sets, Games Workshop pre-coloured the miniatures for easier friend or foe identification.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

There are two small terrain sprues, covering 3 barriers and 3 piles of detritus. The design of the barriers is strongly related to the resin ork barricades that were released back in 2009. They pick up elements of some of the newer terrain and vehicle kits, so you see wasted pieces from ork vehicles and boxes and such from the Munitorum among other kits. I can imagine that we might see these sprues as a 22,50 - 25 EUR kit in the future of its own. These terrain pieces are used to mark the racing track on Vigilus.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

As for the miniatures, there is a Kustom Boosta-Blasta in red plastic and a Shokkjump Dragsta in yellow plastic included in this box. So far, the Speed Freeks set is the only way to get your hands on these two vehicles. The cast of these new vehicles is very well done, low amount of mould lines and just look how dense the sprue is packed.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

And then there is a set of 3 warbikes in yellow, as well as in red included, adding up to a total of 6 warbikes. The warbikes kit was firstly introduced back in 2007 and beside of some moderate mould lines, aged quite well.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

The first vehicle I assembled was the bright yellow Shokkjump Dragsta. These new kits show the transition from Gorka Morka to Speed Freeks very clearly. Instead of carrying a whole mob into battle, where you would need a work horse like a Pick up, these are build for speed. Extreme speed.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

The parts themselves are very well detailed and I build them in units and stuck them into place instead of actually gluing them. As they interlock and partially cover each other, I assume it won't be easy to paint them if the whole vehicle is assembled. Especially with the crew. For that reason the order of the assembly shown here, differs from the one in the assembly guide.

The engine of the Shokkjump Dragsta is insane, it looks a bit like an aeroplane engine combined with a Tesla coil.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

As you can see, the huge side pipes cover the sides and the Dragster has a huge front wing, topped with a series of circular saw blades. Just in case you pick something up and want to make sure it does not escape.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

The tire themselves are a bit unusual for a Warhammer kit. Usually they have a strong profile or in case of Orks, a bit unrealistic metal plates added to the rubber of the tire. But these are proper slicks, as you would expect them from a dragster. Actually, for an ork vehicle, the rear tires could have been a bit more exaggerated.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

The (almost) last part of the dragster is the crew. You have an ork as a driver. He's wearing goggles and then there is a two Grot crew taking care of the Dakka! (For non Orks, that's shooting). I didn't glue them to the kit and just put them in place, for easier painting.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

For that reason, to be able to remove them for priming and painting, the last pieces beside the controls were not glued either, to be able to remove them.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

A really well designed vehicle. Very orkish and fast looking. Unfortunately, no optional parts, no variation. That comes rather unexpected, as the rules cover upgrades for the vehicles and one of the strength of the Orks, was the very broad selection of interchangeable bits and pieces to "enhance" the kits.

The next vehicle, this time in blood red, is the Kustom Boosta-Blasta. From the looks it is kept in the style of a custom hot rod.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

The Kustom Boosta-Blasta has a very prominent engine, and a small error in the assembly guide, as the numbers of the pieces 15 and 18 are switched compared to the sprue.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

The rear tires are fat double tires, with a solid portion of grip and the front has an impressive radiator grill, with iconic orcish design.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

Next up are the side pipes. With 6 pipes on each side, these are very present. Great design and I can imagine that you can make them really pop if you go the extra mile and paint the tips in the turned blue, as metal does when it becomes very hot.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

The design on the front tires is exceptional as well. You can see the suspension on the inner side, a great amount of detail. The gap between the roof and the remaining car is due to the fact that I didn't glue it, as I want to keep the crew removable for painting purposes, like I did with the Dragster.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

Next up the crew keeping the Kustom Boosta-Blasta in the race. Similar to the Dragster, it has an ork driver and two grotz as "helpers". The ork is kept in the updates design, similar to the Age of Sigmar Orruks, with a more fierce facial expression. The grot wielding a pistol from the rods back is a great dynamic detail.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

The Boosta-Blasta carries a huge blasta on its roof, manned by an ork. The whole thing is 360° turnable, as you just put him on top on the ring.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

As mentioned above, the gap between the roof and the rest of the car comes from the fact that I didn't glue it on, to be able to remove the crew for priming and painting. As well as have an easier access to the interior. Unfortunately, same as the Dragster, no optional parts, no variations. And due to the way the individual parts are cut, it will be (more) difficult to swap heads.

Now let's start with the "oldies" in this kit, the 2007 warbikes. The three medium sized sprues from that kit are included two times in this box, once in bright yellow and once in red. For comparison, to show that the details are exactly the same, I added the "regular" sprue in classic grey. Same level of details and fit. Only the mould lines were a bit more prominent on the red and yellow sprues compared to the two newer vehicle sprues, but that might be due to the age of the mould itself.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

Each bike comes with a predetermined back tire. The front tires can be swapped as pleased. And each bike has its own style of foot rests on the left and right. These parts are not interchangeable, but give them quite a good character and width.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

As for the fronts, the Boss Bike has two different styles for the head light parts, either a metal grim face or an animal skull. The exhaust pipes and front covers of the tires can be swapped among them, as you like. Two of them can even be added upside down for further variation.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

As for the ork riders, there are three pair of legs and bodies for the regular Orks, as well as a larger Boss body. There are 3 regular ork heads and two Boss heads to choose from. As for the weaponry, the Boss has either a power-claw or a huge axe, the regular ork bikers have three different hand weapons. Depending on what weaponry you use for your bikers, you cut of one or both of the handles (in case you have a very safety focused ork biker with both hands on "the wheel").

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

The bikes have like the predecessor design huge dakka on the rear. Where the boss has double twin-linked guns, the regular boys have a gun and ammo drum (where the sides can be switches as pleased).

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

Final pieces of the Ork bikers are the shoulder pads and the banner pole of the boss.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

With the second set of Ork bikers I tried to use the alternate / optional parts. As the "old" ork range is along with the Dark Eldar one of the best of whole the Warhammer 40,000, you can mix and swap bits from other kits. As you can see I went with the head and chain sword arm from the regular Ork boyz sprue. I left the rear guns from the bikes, as I like the leaner biker look more on them. You could build them guns from the infantry kit, if you want to for example, or modify the headlights to have them there, similar to the Space Marine bikes.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

And the two assembled speed mobs. Due to the clear colour indication, you could use them right away for gaming. That was clearly intended, to lower the entry barrier until gaming.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

How plays Warhammer 40,000 Speed Freeks?
As you would expect from a 24 page rule book, it is pretty lean. Each turn of Speed Freeks is divided into four phases, a planning, movement, shooting and close combat. In the planning phase a pool of 10 speed freek dice are assigned to three different pools, Kunnin’, Speedin’ and/or Shootin’. The dice in each pool are rolled and depending on your result you gain points in that pools that you can use in the following phases of the turn. Kunnin' decides who goes first, alternating after each vehicle. In the speedin' phase you assign your dice from that pool towards your vehicles and use the results to determine how many moving templates (there are a couple of different moves) can be used by that vehicle in that turn. Same procedure for the Shootin' phase, you assign the pool towards a vehicle and use the dice on the weapons carried by that vehicle. The data card shows, how much damage you deal and the data card of the target shows how much armour you have to defend against that attack. Each vehicle can take as much damage as it has hit points. If they are depleted, the vehicle is removed from play.

There are 4 scenarios, called Rukks within Speed Freeks. There is a Deathmatch scenario, an "endless" race (where you align the boards in a straight line and remove the last tile and add it towards the front), a raid on the enemy territory and a huge race that needs two starter kits. Most scenarios are set up for 2 to 4 players, the Big Race can be played with up to 8 players, but only uses a vehicle each.

And then there is a double page with additional (optional) rules. You can assign your warmob to one of the 6 large clans, Evil Sunz, Bad Moons, Deathskulls, Goffs, Snakebites and Blood Axes. As well as the rules for Kustom Jobs, upgrades for your vehicles. There are no strict rules for the use of them. You could limit them to campaign games, where the winner receives two cards, all others just one and so on. There are campaign rules included, but these are more loose suggestions, not an actual set of campaign rules. I think it is best to go with the Championship they suggest, like Formula One, where you play an amount of games over a period of time and the one with the most points wins the championship.

What's next?
There is not that much next. As this game is a stand-alone and covers as mentioned before all the rule content you need to play, the only thing you could add, are the other four vehicle kits. Those are the Boomdakka Snazzwagon, Megatrack Skrapjet, Rukkatruck Squigbuggy and the Deffkilla Wartrike. These kits will be 35 EUR each.

Maybe we will see within the White Dwarf or Community page some Speed Freeks rules for the other vehicles from the Ork range. But that is just a wild guess by me.

The wheelbase and size of these vehicles is pretty close to each other, as they all fit on the new oval bases. I did comparison with an Ork Trukk that I converted into a Hot Rod a while back (2009). I have a couple of other Ork kits that I "imperialized" for industrial use with Necromunda or Genestealer / Chaos cults. A comparison in size with the Battlewaggon and a Deffdread. You could convert the Ork vehicles with some Blood Reavers or Goliath into a newer interpretation of the Digga Mobz from the Gorka Morka game (or just plain Mad Max Warboyz). Alternatively, use the Space Marine Scout Bikes, a Box of Orlocks and a Goliath and convert them for a human speed mob. Just to open that gateway for some ideas.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks
Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

And of course, no review without the backdrop pictures of both speed mobs.

Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks
Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks
Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks Warhammer 40,000 - Speed Freeks

Conclusion
Speed Freeks is a pretty decent stand-alone boxed set for 120 EUR. It depends a bit, which point of view you have, if you are excited about it or not. As a board game, without any further connections to the Orks, it might be a bit expensive. As a starting point for an Ork project it is quite solid, as you get a good starting point for your own speed cult.

I think one thing that might irritate the most that has "only" reasonable savings compared to other boxed sets Games Workshop offers that partially give you the content at 50% or so. If we add up the contents of Speed Freeks, and we're just summing up miniatures, we come to roughly 160 EUR worth of content (2x Warbike Mob at 32,50, 2x Ork vehicle at 35 EUR, 1x small terrain set of 22,50). And this game comes with double the game plans and a lot of heavy card board templates, markers and cards. And do not forget, unlike other rule sets, no need for additional card decks, expansions etc. it is all in here. So you have a roughly 30% discount on the items included, not bad.

I expected it to me more orkish crazy never the less. I really like the design of the new vehicles. Very stunning looking kits, somewhat crazy, somewhat realistic. But it is rather sad that they have no options or variations. I'd like to see them differ from more than just the paint job. That feels to some degree like a wasted chance. Still, you can compensate that "lack" of variation by buying one of the other kits, as there are 5 medium sized vehicle kits and a trike. Casting, sharpness of the details and fit is ace.

The rules of Speed Freeks are very beginner friendly, but the kits are from the level of detail and size more demanding. So to avoid disappointment, you should have some experience under your belt before you get your hands on (painting) the vehicles. I strongly recommend not completely building / gluing them prior to painting.

Warhammer 40,000 is a brand by Games Workshop.

The reviewed product item was provided by the manufacturer.

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