40k Strategy Guides
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Author:  Rork [ Sun Feb 12, 2006 11:14 pm ]
Post subject:  40k Strategy Guides

This is a thread for players to post guides on how to play their army or armies.

Anything here should be based on experience rather than pure strategic theory. If you want to discuss strategy create further threads about it - I want this thread left as clean as possible.

There can be multiple guides to a race if needs be, but I may consolidate them into one post if it gets too spread out.

Armies covered so far:
Dark Eldar
Khorne Berserkers
Imperial Guard part 1
Imperial Guard part 2 & 3
Deployment and Terrain
Blood Angels

Author:  Dearchon [ Mon Feb 13, 2006 12:13 am ]
Post subject: 

I'm starting work on a Dark eldar one, will replace this post with it when i've finished it, gonna get it done for ya'll asap :D

edit: over the next few days i shall start it, but my codex is at home, luckily i'm going back home at the weekend so i'll get it then so should be ablet o finish it off shortly after, so expect mine to be ready mid to late next week, and a word of warning, it will be MUCH longer than the blade ligers as it shall be covering asmuch as i can think of n_n

Author:  The liger [ Mon Feb 13, 2006 1:58 am ]
Post subject: 

I don't want to steal your post DEArchon, but I'll also post mine on Dark Eldar, and specifically the all Raider list...

The all raider list is, as one would expect, a list that uses a lot, or all raiders, and basically nothing on foot. It utilises the speed of DE vehicles, the general cheapness of DE warriors and vehicles.

Strengths: Very fast, usually good in assault
Weaknesses: Very fragile, quite weak at points, lots of points on each unit, raiders are key to success, taking out a raider takes out a unit basically

- Firstly, I'll talk about the army. Probably the best way to start is by taking 3 raider squads. These can be of any size, though I usually go for a full 10 (or 9) so that they are less vunerable. These squads are cheap, and can be used to block, but can also be effective en masse. Usually, the sybarite should be taken and equipped with an agoniser, or tormentor helm and punisher if you have the points (and model).
- Next, you can fill out your army as you wish. HQ is a good point to go next. I usually take an Archon with Combat Drugs, Punisher, Tormentor Helm, and Shadowfield (with optional animus viatae). This gives you 6 attacks on the charge, wounding even T6 on 2+, with a small risk. I find this setup far better than the agoniser one, for +5 points, you get a general better wounding chance against all enemies, and can still wound Hive Tyrants on 4s. I also take the Archon, because I find the extra wound and attack to be useful enough, although they aren't necessary.
- I usually ride the Archon with 9 warriors (not retine). Incubi are very nice if you're lucky, but are also fragile, so you have to be careful with them. Also, it means that the lord cannot leave the retinue, which is bad because it stops you utilising fleet of foot, or the 12" assault move drug, which can be useful at times...
- Then you could have Wyches, which I like to field in units of 10, with Wych weapons, and a succubus w. agonizer. They are very fragile until combat, so hide them behind other raiders. Grotesques need a character for a raider, but can hit very hard, and are very good against shooting. A haemonculus or lord could go with them, and it adds some extra puch, but they are also fragile when skimmers crash, and also when being charged. Warp beasts are same as normal (I don't like them particularly) and mandrakes could be useful in capturing table quarters (since vehicles can't do it anymore).
- Foot squads could be included too. Although it takes away from the main theme, it does give you some relentless power (with larger squads) or some nice sniper squads (do you need them with all those raiders?).
- Jetbikes are also nice, and can keep up with the raiders. They can be used as blaster squads to get rid of tanks, or even combat squads. I have never used hellions, but I suppose they could be like jetbikes.
- Heavy support is good. I take 2 ravagers, with all disintegrators. Thats 18 marine killing shots, or 6 blast template termie killing shots. Pretty good start for a heavy infantry firebase. A talos is very slow, but could be used either to mop up things at the end, to kill things that the other squads left well alone, or perhaps to draw fire away from the raiders (although with so many raiders on the table, the talos loses some of it's impact). Scourges could be good for infantry killers, especially artilliery teams, or tank killer squads.

But enough rambling about army selection (sorry if that's to much, I'll edit it if necessary), on to tactics! These will be some general tactics, and some for the all raider army...

Firstly, squads and sybarites. I almost always give squads sybarites (or succubi) and equip them with agonisers, unless I am really strapped for points. In 40, saves play quite a major part, as does higher toughness. Giving them agonisers, means that you have a good 4 attacks (on the charge) which will always wound on 4s with no save, which is about 1 model dead (which could even be a terminator!). This means that you at least have a good starting point, and the other attacks should be able to get you 1 or 2 more kills (or more depending on what unit it is). I like to think as the squad to be a "bus" to get the sybarite into combat, and then do some damage themselves. Think Dark Eldar - troops are cheap, you can expend them as long as you hit the enemy's lines.

Also, ganging up. Like Druchii use baiting tactics etc. Dark Eldar shouldn't play fair. It is quite unlikely that a single DE unit will break a unit of marines, even if they're Wyches etc. It's much more effective to gang up and hit one part of the opponent's battle line, and then get over 20 attacks in (including 8 attacks from the sybarites), than for you to spread out the attack, and be repelled easily. Basically, hit one unit with many of yours, while blocking other enemy units from helping with your cheap units.

Get into combat quick! DE don't like shooting (except grotesques), especially not the vehicles. Raiders can be felled by bolter shots, and so you want to get out of shooting quick. An easy way of doing that is to get into combat. Once your squad's out and ready, the raider can cause annoyances against enemy vehicles, or take out characters. If Wyches get the 12" drug they can easily get into combat with anything they choose, and shouldn't be afraid to do so, perhaps even against terminators (where their Wych weapons and invunerable save should mean that they do quite well). The lord can also charge out of his unit into unsuspecting enemy units using this, and could quite easily win against an enemy unit.

Remember, everything is cheap. You can afford to expend even half of your army, as long as a plan is pulled off. Warriors are dirt cheap, and the vehicles are not expensive, and so you shouldn't get attatched to them. Raider squads are not there to kill loads, they are there to defend your army, create movement situations (effectively being mobile terrain, they can bottleneck units etc.) and generally most units, even wyches or lords, should not be vital for victory. This is a reason why small squads are often better, but too small makes them ineffective. Your raiders are going to blow up, that is a given. It's how many blow up, and how effective they are, and how quickly you negate threats that is important.

I will go through raiders themselves quickly too. A chant that many DE players think to themselves is "Mobile terrain! Mobile terrain!". This is true, raiders make great terrain. They can be used as cover, to block line of sight, or to bottleneck units and force enemies into certain directions (in a \ / shape, so enemies are funneled through into a strong unit at the end, or have to go around the raiders. There are many ploys that can be used with raiders, including creating walls, bottlenecking units, and blocking entrance hatches (to pop the squad inside, which may be a command or terminator squad! Once a unit has disembarked, the raider also draws less firepower, and can usually roam more freely around, shooting vehicles in the back and causing mischief!

Naturally, getting rid of threats early is obvious, but not always easy. Cover is important for keeping safe, remembering that raider squads count as cover for other squads in raiders! Jetbikes can be good for harrying vehicles, and perhaps getting lucky shots off, and then maybe even charging in (if the succubus has an agoniser and tormentor helm!). Vehicles can be taken down by massed Dark Lance shots, but there are still missile lauchers and Krak missiles around, so again, it's probably best to get into combat (or close range shooting).

So some main thoughts. The Raider army is very fast, and can hit hard, but is also fragile. It cannot last against much shooting, so cover is good, but getting into combat is better (this can be helped by ganging up squads against one enemy unit). You need to get rid of threats early, and then can use the squadless raiders to harry the enemy throughout the game. When playing it, think fast and hard, to smash into one part of the enemy's line, and pour through the gap (blitzkrieg). Or you could go defensive against very assault army's, shoot when they come at you (good if they have low AS) and then use the raiders to charge against them. This tactic should be effective. Against shooty armies like Tau and Guard, it is important to deploy very safely, and hug cover. Hope you get the first turn too! Perhaps kamakazie runs into the lines would be good here, just to stop some of the shooting (and these armies are often not so good in shooting).

So there you are, my thoughts on the all Raider Army. They may be rubbish, or useless, but I'll post them still. Hope they may help some people, and I look forward to reading DEArchons ideas on DE tactics too.

Rork Edit: Edited for accuracy on request.

Author:  Bringer [ Mon Feb 13, 2006 3:50 am ]
Post subject:  World Eaters, ooh...

Well, I haven't played all that much with my World Eaters, but I can give some do's and don'ts and sound advice about units.

HQ: In large games, a Berserker Glaive is indispensable. A tooled prince with a glaive can dish out terrible damage and take a lot of blows. Example: Friday my prince was charged by NINE necron wraiths and a necron lord with a warscythe. I believe that's upwards of 36 attacks at S6 with saves, and then four more at S5 with no saves at all. He takes no wounds, and survives for two more turns while nearly killing the Necron lord TWICE(stupid resorb...). Drawbacks: Rages every turn, and thus can be baited and made to go in bad directions. Can be difficult to use if mission requires restraint.

Elites: Termies are nice, but they almost never get their points back. They can't use enough firepower to earn their points back when they deepstrike, and deepstriking termies might as well be called fire magnets. But, if you keep them on foot, they get shot up even more. Best bet is to use a Land Raider and hope for the best.

Possessed, on the other hand, are much more versatile, cheaper, and still highly effective. For World Eaters, the mutation upgrade is rather superfluous. I like the Demonic Talons upgrade, as a favored unit is practically guaranteed to kill any single model, even Carnifex's or Wraithlords. Rending berserkers are just not nice. They also like to tear through Necrons with the greatest of ease.

Troops: Berserkers are just about the meanest close combat troop in the game. Nids are close, but berserkers can shoot the Nid CC guys. Yes, they are expensive, but, they are exceptionally efficient at killing Termies. Especially with Furious Charge. Hitting first, wounding on 3's, and saves at only 4+ instead of 2+...I love it.

Bloodletters. Remember when I said Berserkers are just about the meanest? Bloodletters are. Troops with S5 and power weapons. And both armor and invulnerable saves. They're great. They're so great, everyone knows to kill them before they reach the lines. Your best bet is to get a unit of Bikes and turboboost forward, hope you get the summon, and watch the dogs on the other side die like wee babes. Buttery goodness.

Heavy Support: While not very Khorn-ish, heavy support can be used well if the terrain benefits you. If you take the Defiler, get indirect fire, cause he's good for crowd control and with the mutation upgrade can also take a few shots. And he's demonically possessed, mwuahahaha.... He is rather expensive, but with good terrain, you should earn your points back.

I don't like Predators. They get rather expensive with the Lascannons, which is the only reason to take them, and often draw too much fire. Unlike the defiler, they have to get in LOS to pop their targets. I'd rather stick with a Defiler.

Dreadnought: Same as above, though if you can get it into close combat, then you can laugh maniacally. 'Noughts are great for troops without grenades or powerfists, i.e., NECRONS!!!

Fast Attack: Fleshhounds=not that much of a practical use. The best way for summoning demons is with turboboosted bikes, but doing that uses up the entire point of taking flesh hounds: Speed. Yes they're S5, but their lack of power weapons/armor save make them negligible in combat against anything but light troops. And without as much killing power, they're gonna lose combat and then take some instability tests. Not good.

Bikes, on the other hand, can be great for demon bombing. With four squads of bloodletters and two squads of bikes, you can get a turn two charge on just about anything with AT LEAST 32 S5 no save attacks. Expensive, but very nasty. Other than demonbombing, not very useful.

Miscellaneous: Talisman's of Burning Blood are your friends. A possible 18" charge with berserker marines is always a good thing.
Ranged weapons: Don't bother with your infantry. Any turn that you're desperately going to need to shoot, you're gonna Blood Rage. And then you've wasted points on an item that does jack diddly for you.
Dread Axe: Invaluable against anything with an invulnerable. Particularly nice against high T critters such as wraithlords, especially on a prince; or Necron Lords with their durn resorbs and invulnerable saves. Very good secondary option for demon weapons.

As for tactics, your best resource is target selection, cause once you're committed, your soldiers are just gonna forget tactics and charge willy-nilly into what you've pointed them at.

These are most of the things I've found with using my World Eaters. There are other tactics, but I haven't tried them all yet. Hope this helps.

Author:  Keltharus [ Tue Apr 04, 2006 4:18 pm ]
Post subject: 

The Imperial Guard, the Hammer of the Emperor, are one of the most versatile, and enjoyable armies in the game. They are the basic grunt, who either enlisted or was drafted. They have no superhuman enhancements, no amazing technology, and no power armor, but they make up for what they are lacking by overwelling numbers and yes, strategy. Many go against this point but IG are not easy to play. They may have a lot of big guns and men, but keep in mind, those things are strong, but they are carried by something that can die instantly to a bolter. They take ingenuity, strategy, and of course balls(no offense to any women who play).

Basic overview of units:
Command Squad- The most important and integral part of any Imperial Guard force. This is the hub of command as the name implies. It is the source of leadership for your army and should it fall into enemy hands, then you will need to start using the smaller platoon command squads leaderships. The command squad itself has a wide range of options from being combat oriented, to completely supportive, to a combination of the two. Being capable of taking 5 squads of different types of weapons which are Anti-Infantry, Anti-tank, Sentinal, Special Weapons, or Fire Support. You may take 5 of these together, most though have a limit on how many you can take. Some people disagree with taking much of these, and some take a lot. Personally I take them based upon the type of game and type of army I am playing. I highly suggest using them with a Drop Troops army so you can maximize fire power from the individual squads when they touch down, as Heavy weapons may not fire when they drop. One thing I always outfit my command squad with is a Master-Vox. Many I know have given me flak for this, but I find it a must. For 25 points, all units may use the leadership of the command squad. With a vox system my army has had a squad break maybe 4 times over the games I played. A vox is a must have. I will detail command squad units later.


Stormtroopers- The most well known IG unit, next to the Leman Russ tanks. These boys are tough, and fire with the accuracy of space marines. Able to take 2 special weapons, and the ability to infiltrate, or deepstrike for a low cost, or both, and given Carapace armor automatically, and the sergeant being able to be upgrade to Veteran Sergeant and carry equipment from the armory, they can be deadly. The most intresting thing to do is upgrade sergeant and give him an Honorifica and powerfist or powersword. This can be risky, but the pay off is fun. Its not exactly usefull, but it is great fun seeing your opponents face when a little unit of Stormtroopers off infiltrating break out instant killing weapons.

Veterans- My personal favorite. Veterans are the basic grunt but with a bad ass attitude and lots of experience. They are a little better than the basic trooper with an increased WS and BS and leadership, and given the ability to infiltrate, but they may also take 3 special weapons that fire with the same accuracy of Smurfs. They still have the basic 5+ save, so they take some strategy to use effectively without dieing off. The sergeant also tas the ability of being upgraded to take wargear and I usually take a Stormbolter with him, or bolt pistol and powersword. Nothing to expensive.

Ogryns- Big fat men. They are intresting units. I have not personally used them but from what I have gathered they are good but are lacking. Its suggested not to use these guys unless you can mount them and get them to the enemy quickly.

Ratlings- Hobbits! Little furry footed sharpshooters. These little guys can infiltrate, are cheap, are all equipped with snipers, and gain +1 to cover automatically. They are a great unit IMHO. I use six and my opponents almost always feel their shots from the get go and send a couple squads after them. This can be usefull for me as that’s less squads I need to worry about for a couple turns. They are handy little guys and should never be underestimated, as they are great shots, and great diverstions, and still expendable.


Platoons- Platoons, the basic grunts. Each platoon is led by a command squad, and then has 2 or more 10 man squads up to a total of 5 squads. At first it is a bit hard to understand but once you do, you see it can provide major advantages, but also major disadvantages. Lets look at the advantages first. A platoon takes up only one troops choice on force organization, and can pack a lot of firepower. A command squad forming the command of the platoon, can be as powerfull as that of HQ or it cold be tailored to support the platoon. Given 3 plasma guns and a medic, and upgrade members to veterans, it can be extremely deadly. Each squad under that consists of ten men, with one special weapon and one heavy weapon. With the ballistic skill of the basic guardsmen I suggest weapons with more than one available shot, but don’t be scared to give lascannons to grunts. Looking at the total, you would get maybe 4-6 lascannons at 1000 points, and not everyone can always miss. Combine these units with Close Order Drill, you have a firing line that few can withstand.

Conscripts- The many and unlucky. Low leadership, weapon skill, ballistic skill, and initiative, these little gun babys are usefull for one thing. Flamers and chaos. Give a group of 50 Conscripts 5 flamers, and send them running at the enemy, your opponent gets a very scared expression, and will divert a lot of fire on them, thus ignoring your whole army raining heavy weapons and tank shells. These units can also help hold flanks pretty well, using them as a buffer against units trying to come around your army. Like the ratlings, these guys shouldn’t be underestimated.

Armored Fist Squad- The armored fist squad is a very mobile, basic squad of Guardsmen. Although, unlike other squads, they do not need to form a platoon, they can remain a seperat squad, thus taking up one troops choice themselves. This can be advantageous if playing an Armored Company that may need infantry support, but otherwise they can be used as a fast attack, counter attack, or spearhead.

Fast Attack:

Sentinals- Utilitarian, cheap, rugged, and can pack firepower. These walkers are weak by armor concerns, but they are scouts, not Main Battle tanks or dreadnoughts. They can carry a single weapon, but that weapon can be lascannon, autocannon, multilaser, or heavy flamer. I usually outfit these with Lascannons as they are great tank hunters. The best thing to usually do is not take 3 in a squad otherwise armies that can get multiple glances at a time,such as necrons, will waste a squad in no time. Usually best to take them as individual squads with your command squads and fast attack slots. If you have a lot and want other fast attack options open, you can place them all in one or two squads, just be carefull.

Hellhound- Very usefull light tank with its inferno cannon and its speed. Its great for pinning troops and in city fight, for utterly annihilating your foes in close quarters. Its low armor value makes it weak though so be carefull, and don’t put men to close to one.

Rough Riders- Cavalry has been a tradition with the military ever since a man could both ride a horse and hit stuff with a rock at the same time. In the 41st millennium, its no different. The Rough Riders are mounted on anything from horses to vicous predatorial lizards. Although they may seem out of place on the 40k battlefield, they have some decisive uses. Their lance is outfitted with charges so that on the first charge they make they all count as having power weapons, this can annihilate a unit easily, allowing a breakthrough to occur, as most armies usually make on long line. If you can get these guys to spear head an attack followed by sentinels and infantry, you can effectively and quickly split your opponents force, or get behind their lines to the soft targets. This is done if you wish to play offensively. On the defense, hold these guys back off to the side, and when you are having a serious threat of being broken through, charge them in to change the tide.

Chimera- The utility vehicle, the transport, the counter attack. This little vehicle does it all. The basic transport and model almost all other light vehicles are based off of. With a good armor value for a transport and the fire power it can deal out, it is a good buy. Being able to transport just about any unit in the army, including ogryns, it can be a very effective spearhead assist vehicle or counter attack.

Heavy Support:

Leman Russ Battle Tank- Yes, the famous Leman Russ Battle Tank. Probably the most well known unit and model in the Imperial Guard. The sheer amount of fire power it can deal out and take can be overwhelming to some. Capable of carrying three heavy weapons plus the Main Battle Cannon and a pintle weapon, it can dish out the hurt. Being able to carry either Heavy Bolter or Lascannon hull weapon, and Heavy Bolter or Heavy Flamer sponsoons, it can be tooled for range or assault. Its main weapon, the Battle Cannon can be devastating as well with its ordinance blast. Anything with a 3+ save shivers at the sight of it. These are addicting weapons, but it can be a expensive addiction. The cost is high for one, and then the cost for upgrading it with all the weapons can be expensive(enough for a whole Guard Squad, sometimes two depending), and they have a major weakness. The rear. All Imperial Guard vehicles suffer from this. There are multiple tactics for minimalizing the chance of getting a rear shot on them, but that will be discussed later. The Leman Russ chassis is the basic chassis for all heavy tanks. Several of these tanks include the Demolisher, a siege tank with a shorter range main weapon but far mor powerfull, the Exterminator, which is involved with Anti-infantry, the Destroyer, which sports a plasma cannon as its main weapon, the Tank hunter, which uses a super lascannon, and can not be given any other weapons, and many others. The Imperial Guard have the largest selection of tanks out of all armies. A whole list of them, the points cost, and the stats, along with the rules for Armored Company can be found at www.games-workshop.com, in the Imperial Guard section.

Basilisk- Another well known vehicle. This monster has a hull heavy bolter and a Earthshaker cannon mounted on a Chimera chassis. The earthshaker itself is a lethal cannon with a massive range, that can be fired indirectly if needed. The tank has great firepower, but is incredibly vulnerable. The basic and most effective strategy is to hide it behind something and use the indirect fire until your opponent gets in the blind area, then move to a position to provide good cover on a fire lane. Although this tank is powerfull on the offensive, if attacked though it will not last long. Keep in mind it only has the hull of a chimera.

Heavy Weapon Platoons- Probably one of the most controversial units. They can be expensive, and they can be useless, or they can be usefull. Most use them in Drop Troop armies, but I don’t recommend this. For about 25% less you can have the squads in your HQ’s. Some people like them, and some don’t. Its more of personal opinion I think.

Rork edit: The return key is your friend

Author:  Drizz't [ Tue Apr 04, 2006 8:54 pm ]
Post subject: 

In my experience of 40K, one of the most deciding factors in a game, is initial set-up. You may be playing against an army well suited/built/or powergamed to beat yours, but if initial set up is a total mess on your opponents side, and the terrain is placed with great thought in it, chances to pull wins increases. One thing to remember, terrain placement is a double-edged sword.

Let’s start with terrain types:
We all know or are familiar with the many flora/fauna/ruins/wreckages of 40k. Thus as far as going deep into cover saves, that’s is well detailed in the BBB. What is important is LoS, or Line of Sight. Establishing terrain height, as well as the cover save you get from it before the game starts, reduces the number of arguments that can occur later on during the course of a game. The fewer arguments to be had, the faster the game goes on.

Terrain Setup:

Remember that LoS, in 40k usually equals kills. If your opponent has LoS from his deployment zone into yours this is very bad, this means should he have any long range weaponry, that he can hit any of your units in his LoS right off the bat, thereby giving him an advantage. Denying your opponent any advantage is always good strategy. Let me go over what my usual procedure is:

1) Pick the largest (if you get second then second largest) piece of terrain, and place smack dab in the center of the board.
2) Pick the next piece of terrain, and try to make either a straight line of terrain, cutting the table in half, with few avenues of LoS from one side of the table edge to the other, or an ‘L’ shaped configuration
3) Leave as few ‘No Man’s Land’ areas as possible, these are distinct kill zones. Remember that we are leaving the table as neutral as possible, because the roll for table edge hasn’t been decided yet.

Moving on to reasoning:
Here is why I set up terrain like this;
Much like in chess, the most powerful location of the board is located in the center. Imho if you control the center of the table then you can control the fight. Most ranged weaponry has effective range of 12”+ on a 6X4 board, if you can get at the half way, your effective firepower is now leering into your opponent’s deployment zone, if not his side of the board. In essence you are taking the fight out of your home, and into his.

Using my BA army as an example, I usually achieve this by way of transporting my troops with Rhino’s, and dropping off my squads into cover, which work their way up into a firing position. This establishes 3 things:
a) moves my army halfway up the board
b) prevents my opponent from having LoS on practically anything
c) My opponent has targets, when I give him targets, and those targets now have cover saves/ are hull down/ get I 10 when charged etc… 

Using Terrain to press Advantages:
Using my BA army as an example. We all know that BA’s have to roll for Blood Rage, both an advantage and disadvantage for the army in general. But to use it as an advantage, all you have to do is look at the board, and see how long it would take for certain units to get from where they are at, to where they need to be.

With terrain, your chances for achieving this goal increases. So lets start off where we left hat Tactical squad that left a rhino, they have now moved up through the terrain, and are in LoS of just about everything my opponent has. But also an Assault squad has now bounded to the edge of the terrain and has ‘Walked’ and not ‘Jumped’ into it, thereby saving us the humiliation of loosing marines to a failed dangerous terrain test. Now that the marines are within cover a few things have been established.
a) The assault marines can now use the terrain as a staging point.
b) If they are more than 6’ into the terrain, they cannot be seen.
c) If they are less than, the Tactical Squad offers a screen (no matter how much it doesn’t matter against most armies.)
d) The Assault squad benefits from cover saves.

Again, I’m just using my BA as an example. Let me use Tau as an example. 2 units of warriors in Devilfishes move towards our setup terrain, they hit the edge of the terrain piece, one drops off its load of Fire warriors and the other set itself up, also the new Vespids, a unit of those flies adjacent to the Devilfishes. So what we are setting up for is a multi-pronged attack, where the unit of Fire warriors in the Terrain piece can act to draw fire, then the second Devilfish can attempt to fly over the terrain feature and drop off the remaining Fire Warriors to help the 1st unit. The vespids are there to fulfill the roll of the Assault Marines at best. Creep up the terrain and use it as a staging area.

In essence this tactic is to be used when blitzing your opponent. You are setting up your force to overwhelm your opponent in 1 turn. Because in that turn you are going to throw everything you have at 1 focal point on the board, where your opponents units lie. This really works well against static shooting armies, and armies that like building a battle line or maginot line. Every other unit in my army that is not dedicated to this war effort, is there to draw attention to itself so I can split my opponents forces up, although this tactic will only work if your army can move. Mobility is key, static armies need not apply.

Remember that you should control the pace of the game, if you do that then you control the game at all times. Using both my BA’s and my battle report vs an oblit cult as an example. You will see that my opponent only had unit to shoot at, which I gave him opportunities to shoot at. The Dev squad, a scout squad were the only initial units that he could shoot at, everything else lay in wait until turn 4. This means that he only shoots at what I want him to shoot at, and kills only what I let him kill. Come turn 4 I threw everything at him, I revealed all my units, there by giving him so many targets, yet not enough guns. The loss of a single assault squad did nothing to lessen the impact of my ensuing charges. Add to the fact that the support fire, bled my opponents units a little, then the charges happened. At that instant on turn 4, I woke my opponent up from him thinking he was in control of the game, because of my rapid move now I yanked his delusions of controlling the game right from under him and sped up the game pretty fast.

Again all of this was due to neutral yet effective terrain placement, as well as using it to my advantage to press my own advantages of my army.

I would entreat many players to try this tactic out, with various armies. Those which I have seen have success with this are (new) Tau, Tyranids, Marines., Necron. All of which I have played and tried with this tactic.

Next Issue: Blood Angels!!!

Author:  Keltharus [ Wed Apr 05, 2006 1:35 pm ]
Post subject: 

Imperial Guard Tactica continued!
Doctrines and Basic Strategies with them:
I will just high light Regimental doctrines, as the skills and drills are too intensive for now, and there are too many, there are basic doctrines, Cadian Doctrines, Catachan Doctrines, and I think Valhallan...i think i saw some for them. If they come up later, I will high light them.

Drop Troops- This allows you to field your army as a whole army of drop troops, even sentinels may do this. All units must follow DS rules. This can give a strategic edge in combat and surprise your opponent. Although risky, it is very doable, but I wouldn’t suggest sending them squad sized. I suggest droping a whole platoon, or else you will die quickly. Heavy weapons are not suggested for DS platoons as they will take away from the firepower, do to the fact heavy weapons may not fire on the turn they DS. I would suggest meltas, flamers, or plasma guns.

Grenadiers- The heroes army. This is when you may take Stormtroopers as troop choices. Although it may sound fun, there is some fine print. These are grenadiers, not Stormtroopers, and thus may not DS or Infiltrate. This can be a disadvantage as you lose a lot of numbers and gain little in return. It is good if you want to make a small elite army if you are in a cash crunch or just want to be fluffy, but this army can be extremely difficult to play and I don’t recommend new people to IG to use it.

Mechanized- Tanks. Lots of Tanks. If this doctrine is implemented you MUST give EVERY ground pounder a ride. This means lots of chimeras. This can be a fun army and medium difficulty. If you are new, you might be able to pull this off, but I don’t suggest you try. This army can also be expensive as you need a minimum of 3 Chimeras in the ver least. 1 for HQ, 2 Armored fists if you want to minimalize, but if you want the good numbers its at least 7 chimeras. 1 HQ, 3 for 1st platoon, and 3 for 2nd Platoon. This army can be fast and can really get to the enemy. It can surprise a lot of people as well, especially if you combine it with a couple Leman Russ tanks or demolishers and pound a whole through the center of their line and unload behind them. I also suggest if going offensively to equip your army with Warrior Weapons(wich equips all units with CCW and Laspistol) and mount them. They can get to the enemy, unload, and charge. That’s 30 attacks in CC for one squad. If you put 2 squads per enemy squad, even marines will fall.

Author:  Keltharus [ Wed Apr 05, 2006 4:19 pm ]
Post subject: 

Imperial Guard Tactica
Strategies, Do’s and Donts:
The Imperial Guard is one of the non-power armored armies. They can be horde, or they can be elitist, depending on your experience. With so many options open to them, you will almost never see two IG armies that look alike. They are tailored to the persons personality and each one is itself one of a kind and customized for the player. With a wide range of fluff and many blank areas, you are really only limited by your imagination as to what you want your army to be. All IG armies though have a few basic strategies and things Imperial Guard Generals must keep in mind.

1.) Don’t think that putting a little can opener on the end of a lasgun makes you able to fight a Marine in CC. Because you cant. Granted there are times when there is no choice, but a major thing, all tactics, strategies, and battle plans revolve around, is keeping your men out of combat. Unless of course they are all equipped with Warrior Weapons, but even then, make sure YOU charge, don’t sit and wait. The best plan of action, and one I normally use now, is to deploy in two seprate battle lines, about 5-7” from each other, one in front of the other. This helps eliminate consolidation, and allows for a double whammy when they get within 12” of your first line. That’s three volleys of lasgun shots. Do not under estimate your lasgun. It’s a good weapon if used in numbers. Put two squads up in this formation style, you get 30 lasgun shots when the enemy comes into rapid fire range of the first squad, and that’s if you have no heavy weapons or special weapons. Everything in your army is effective, just make sure you give enough. A Guard army works with platoons for a reason.

2.) Armor is a great asset but is not essential. There are many Imperial Guard lists with no tanks. Especially Drop Troopers lists. Tanks in the Imperial Guard are uncountable in types, and go beyond the imagination. They are also strong, durable, and can plow the enemy over. When people first come into the Imperial Guard, what is the first thing people usually see? The big picture on the Leman Russ kit, of the tank going over a mound of rubble, guns blazing. It is awe inspiring but as mentioned they are not essential. If you wish to incorporate armor into your army, keep in mind their weaknesses and don’t get blinded by their strengths. They are powerfull for sure, but they have several weaknesses. The first is their rear armor. Their side is average and their front is impenetrable, but they suffer greatly on the back. Keep the back of your tanks safe, if they must move, have them move with a platoon, and keep the platoon in front and to the sides, this will help keep people from getting behind the vehicle. The best way though is try and keep the tank on the board edge. The guns range is enough for firing on anything on the board, but if moved, move along the board edge, and keep the back to the edge. Some tanks though just have to go forward and get close, such as the Chimera, and the Hellhound. These light vehicles will probably never see the end of a battle, and is why they are cheap. Don’t be afraid to send them to their death if it means it can save a stronger unit, or tie up an enemy for a bit as they deal with the tank. Use them well, and not as throw aways.

3.) Heavy Weapons are your friend, and so is your command squad. Heavy Weapons will always rack in the highest kill count in the game. These include heavy bolters, mortars, auto-cannons, missle launchers, or Lascannons. These let you either deal with power armored infantry easily, or with massive swarms such as Tyranids and Orks. These are vital to your army as they are really the only thing capable of destroying enemy vehicles and elite units such as Terminators, and creatures with a 2+ save. What has for me proven to be best is to use a unit of 3 Lascannons in the command squad and to either have the infantry platoons use heavy bolters, or auto-cannons. This gives a balanced atni-tank and anti-infantry capability, and with the low BS of Guard infantry, having multiple shots helps. I would advise using auto-cannons, but it is up to the person. Autocannons may not have an AP enough to knock off a Marine in one blow, but it is fairly good in strength and if push comes to shave can be use for anti-transport purposes. Theres also the classic, and ever famous, but expensive, las/plas combination. This is a combination of outfitting a whole unit(or army) with only Plasma special weapons, and Lascannon Heavy weapons. This is an army that makes Marines wet themselves. With a minimum of 15 AP 2 weapons, and 20 Plasma gun shots within 12” alone, it can take marines out. This is best when put into effect with a Drop Troops army and you can drop to within 12” of your enemy. The command squad is also a very important unit. It is the hub of your army, the heart and brain. Being able to convey a leadership of ten to every unit if using a Master Vox system, it can make a horde of leadership 10 that can also, if combined with Iron Discipline wich lets the unit size modifiers to leadership checks to not be included in checking leadership for pinning or for being under 25% and lets the unit regroup even if under 25%, and combined with die hards to ignore most negative modifiers for leadership checks, it can make your army almost unbreakable. In all of my games, the only reason I lose is do to every one of my units being killed. Ive only had 4 squads throughout all of my games to run. I use the combination of Master Vox system, Iron Discipline, and Die Hards. The command unit, unlike almost all armies and races, except Tau, is not a fighting unit really. It can be equipped to fight, but in most cases it shouldn’t fight. They are not much better than a normal Guardsman, and cant take on something a Marine HQ, or Tyranid HQ could. They are there for leadership purposes first and foremost. It is best to try and keep your HQ hidden, and concealed, and in a large group of infantry to avoid deep strikers coming onto them. If the Command is killed, it falls to the individual Platoon leaders, wich do not have the leadership to hold out long, and will inevitably fall. Basicly, make sure that if your command is killed, then you have pretty much lost already. Nothing gets to them without your army being dead first.

4.) Though rare to see, Imperial Guard armies are able to move and walk. This can actually be one of the trickiest things if you are not equipped for assault. Many scenarios involve the capture of something, thus you must move. Imperial Guard are not quick to change or evolve to the situation like other armies can, and can be unwieldy and cumbersome if forced to do so without warning. This is where the tactic of leap forging comes into play, and why IG units are placed in squads. If you must take an objective, keep a squad of each platoon back in the deployment zone if you have to capture and run. If its just take and hold, then you move your whole army. First, send in any heavy armor, and light armor, preferably light armor first. They will soften the target for your heavy armor to really hit home in the enemy. Move Guard units as platoons. Usualy you may have 3-4 squads. Keep 1 or 2 squads stationary to shoot heavy weapons and other weapons as 1 or 2 squads moves up to them or past them. Keep the platoon command with the last squad. This allows you to keep up a good rate of fire while moving. Although you will most likely go slower than some armies doing this, when you get to the objective you will have been shooting into the defenders for a turn and have them softened up, and if you had armor, your armor would have been pounding away at them. The way to use armor in these missions involves several strategies.

a. Line Abreast- This is the usual tactic and is used to sweep the enemy away. Move forward 6” a turn and fire the main weapon each time. When you get to the objective, do not stop with the rest of your army. In most cases, Heavy support can not do anything for capturing. Move the armor passed the objective and into your enemy to slow them down. 3 Leman Russ Battle tanks in line abreast can be extremely powerfull, and effective.
i. Pros:
1. Center Tank can only be destroyed by firing on front armor, side armor is not displayed.
2. All tanks can fire with a 180 degree arc, and flank tanks may fire with 256 degree.
3. All tanks may tank shock into the enemy at the same time, creating multiple moral checks.

j. Cons:
1. Flank tanks are vulnerably on the side.
2. All tanks can be fired upon the rear reasonably easily.
3. Center tank may not be able to fire sponsoons, due to terrible arc of sight.

b. Spearhead- Intresting on paper but not to much use in game terms. This tactic involves placing the tanks in a wedge shape, and driving them into the center of the enemy. This has its advantages, as the lead tank can tank shock a squad, and the flank tanks can then tnak shock that same squad again. This can be dangerous for the opponent who must take multiple leadership checks.
i. Pros:
1. Most sponsoons will be able to fire.
2. Center Tank can not be fired upon its rear armor.
3. May cause multiple tank shocks on the same unit.
ii. Cons:
1. Opens up side armor to all vehicles.
2. Main Weapons on flank tanks have a decreased arc of sight, and may only shoot upon enemies on their side of the lead tank.
3. Easy to obtain the rear armor of the flank tanks.

c. Diagonal- This formation is the best for flanking with your tanks instead of sending them straight to their death. Its much more strategically advantageous as your opponent will want to send some of his army to counter them, freeing up enemy units who could have helped assault the objective. It involves, putting your tanks into a diagonal line and moving them up along the side. This is greatly advantageous as a whole as it can let all tanks fire into the same spot, but it doesn’t allow more than one secondary weapon, a left or right sponsoon. When stopped moving, turn the vehicles slightly to try and prevent majority of hits onto side armor.
i. Pros:
1. Easy flanking maneuver.
2. Lets all vehicles fire into the same spot.
3. Tanks may only be hit on the front or side armor. Getting a rear shot is near imposible.
4. Can take away units from the assault against your main force.
ii. Cons:
1. Side armor fully exposed.
2. Only a sponsoon will be able to fire if main weapon is lost. If main weapon is lost, move the injured vehicle to the front tto gain full advantage of its LoS.

d. Support- This is not as offensive as other formations, its not really a formation at all, but a support of infantry. This is when you attach a tank to every platoon and to move with that platoon to provide mobile cover and a mobile fire base. It can help infantry make their own spearheads, and inversely, infantry can help protect the tank. The tank should never be more than 2-4” inches away from the platoon they are attached to. The platoon should still use leap frog tactics as the tank will not shell out enough damage by its self.
i. Pros:
1. Helps bolster platoon strength, and offensive power.
2. Provides a mobile fire base.
3. If incapacitated, the tank can become cover for its platoon.
4. Infantry can help screen tank and avoid flankers.
ii. Cons:
1. At the mercy to the units movement.
2. A stand alone and easy target.
3. Can be easily flanked and rear ended.

Author:  Drizz't [ Wed Apr 05, 2006 7:30 pm ]
Post subject: 

Blood Angels Tactica:

Without delving into too much of what a space marine is, this tactica post will focus solely on Blood Angels.

The Blood Angels are one of the most feared CC chapters out there. They are second to none on the charge. For no other Chapter can come close to their ferocity in CC, not even the wolves of Fenris. A well coordinated BA charge is like an irresistible force, it can cut a deadly swathe through just about anything. Because of this BA are generally geared towards CC, you have to be prepared to have acceptable losses. I’m going to cover everything from Scouts to Dreadnoughts. To have a clear understanding of this tactica, you must at least have the following:

SM Codex
BA Codex

Common misconceptions:
Before I go into detail of this tactica, some common misconceptions have to be disclaimed.

Death Company:
These are one of your most resilient and aggressive units. But they are not the end all be all unit. They are indeed a kill unit, but it is not wise to build an army based around the Death Company. They are both your strength and weakness.

Blood Rage:
This is similar to the Khorne Blood Rage, but in no way equal to it. It is an extra D6” “run” towards the closest enemy unit. This extra D6 movement is not constrained to normal movement penalties, meaning you do not roll for difficult terrain checks if this takes you through terrain, although your normal movement would still apply, also this is addition to the normal movement of the unit. Meaning that Jump infantry can make this extra D6 move and still jump.

On to the Tactica!

Starting with Units:

With the normal choices of HQ from the SM codex still applying, we also have acess to two special HQ choices that no other Chapter has. Sanguinary High Priest (SGHP from now on) and the Death Company Chaplain (DCC). Both these guys bring a lot to the table and therefore require special attention to. The choice of HQ can either make or break your army and its performance on the table.
This guy is truly a beast, both in points cost and in what he brings. In addition to himself, 3 + D3 extra Death Company Marines. This would mean he automatically has to lead the DC, but all other chaplain rules still apply ie Litanies of Hate. What must be considered is his cost effectiveness. At the points cost that you intend to play; is he worth it?

Another true beast, this guy is a total team player. His special rule of Chose of Sanguinius in essence allows him to confer Litanies of Hate to any friendly BA model that charges within 6” of him. The possibilities of multiple charges being made more effective around him is truly devastating. This rule applies to ALL friendly BA models, ie dreadnoughts. Imagine a Furioso Dreadnought on the charge, striking at I 5 (furious charge) then re-rolling all miss to hits in combat (he’s got 4 attacks on the charge). Beastly I tell you. He also has the ability to lead the DC or take Honor Guard. Imho this guy is more cost effective than the DCC, he provides the same support, if not better than the DCC, at the cost of extra DC marines. Upgraded, a SGHP costs nowhere near a DCC also.


Death Company:
These are it, you loose your mind; we send you to the nut ward, clad you in black, give you a pistol and a sword/ power sword/ power fist, all for the low price of free.99 , all we ask in return is to make kills. They must be led, if not they go straight towards the nearest enemy model without concern for their own personal safety. These guys will eat models out of your existing squads, so in essence theyre not really free; they can cost as low as a scout, as much as a Termie vet sgt. With an extra A, Furious Charge, and the option to be give free power fist/power weapon to the vets, as well as feel no pain, these guys can duke it out with the toughest of them. But remember they must be led, or you will loose control of them. The SGHP or DCC are the only ones capable of controlling these nuts, as such always try to include one or the other in your army. The composition of your DC will also determine the success of this squad. Multiple power weapons will increase its kill capability, but remember you will be taking vets out of the squads that they came from, in addition, you would have had paid the vet price. Keep them safe as your opponent will want to deal with them early on. Hiding behind or in terrain is usually the best thing to do.

Other than what we already know about these guys, in a BA army they are not worth their weight in gold. Remember that you have to roll for DC even for these suckers, meaning that the chances of them turning into DC marines aren’t really worth their cost. The best BA armies never field any terminators. I would encourage you not to either.

Furioso Dreadnought:
Possibly one of the most beastly dreadnoughts there is. This sucker has Furious Charge and 2 CCW, a bolter and melta. Get in close to any vehicle, and if the melta don’t pop it, you sure will in CC. On the charge, they can even go toe to toe against Daemon Princes. Consider giving these guys as much protection as possible, extra armor, smoke launchers, given the fact that they are possibly the fastest moving dreadnought as well; fall victim to blood rage, and they have a possible 18” charge range. 12” movement, 6” charge. Reach out and touch somebody.

Vet Assault Squads:
Taking it back to the CC nature of BA armies, we have the Vet Assault Squad. These guys have load of attacks, can carry multiple weapons, given the option for termie honors all around, but at a very high pts cost. Use them sparingly, and keep them well protected. On the charge they provide almost invaluable support, and can cut through anything like a S 5 power sword through T 4 Power armor.


Tactical Squads:
Obvious choice here. These guys will form the core of your army. Although their function to your war effort will not be the same as regular chapters. They are meant to bear the brunt of your opponents attacks. They are there to draw enemy fire, and provide fire support. They are NOT however meant to make kills or act as a kill unit. Because of the nature of the weaponry they hold, it is usually best advisable to get them within rapid fire range or have their guns in range of your opponents table edge. Rhino’s will allow you to achieve this. Even with the advent of the new rules set, a rhino rush is still effective and can be done, although it is no longer a rhino rush in its original sense, you are now able to jump out and rapid fire into an enemy unit, quite devastating still. Again these guys will be offering support to your kill units.

We have two types of Scouts squad. The original type of scout squad, of which we have a limit, and the unlimited BA scout squad. These guys are basically downgraded assault marines in truth. 5 scouts with 15 attacks on the charge with furious charge…you do the math, throw in a vet with a power weapon, need I go on? Oh they can also infiltrate. I’ve had these guys assassinate HQ choices, from Khorne Lords to SM commanders. These guys are truly a force to be reckoned with. At their very cheap points cost, they are always an obvious choice to have. Theyre role in your game, is to bleed the enemy white, First blood. Theyre deaths should be of little or no concern to you, they are meant to die.

Truly the most underrated vehicle. I played against an IW army that fielded 6-9 of these. It was a powerful army with great maneuverability. He played his game as an island hop using terrain as islands and staging points to launch offensives. His Rhinos ensured that his troops made it to their destinations. With so many of them, how could he not? You will want Rhino’s in your army. Their support both full and empty is truly invaluable. I have used them to block LOS on heavy weapons units to locking down Dreadnoughts in table corners. Let me give you an example.
I played a BT player who had a long range Dreaddy (tlcan/mlauncher) which he deployed at the table corner. My rhino dropped off its marines, at that point he no longer considered the rhino a threat. Because of this my rhino crossed the board and parked itself in front of his dreaddy at an angle, ensuring it could not walk around it. Should he blow up the rhino, depending on the result, it now blocks LoS, and is difficult terrain to that walked. Essentially keeping that dreadnought busy for 2 turns. I did the same thing to a unit of devastators and long fangs. Now these guys cant move and shoot, so they could either blow the rhino this turn, move next turn, then shoot the turn after, keeping them busy for a total of 3 turns. Or they could blow it away, chance it exploding into them, loose men, and shoot again next turn…still keeping them busy for 2 turns. So now you loose 65+ pts while keeping almost 200pts busy…quite effective.

Next Issue will cover
Fast Attack

Author:  Whosafraidofthebigbadork [ Fri Apr 14, 2006 1:05 pm ]
Post subject: 


The Warboss should never but never get mega armor. It costs too much,
it slows him a lot and it forces him to strike last in hth. One round
of hth against a Marine Lord with lightning claws is enough for the warboss
to die, so I give him eavy armor and a cybork body (5+ invulnerable sv)
so that he can at least strike once against a powerful foe with his choppa
and custom slugga (dakka,shootier,blasta). No Nob boyz as they
are very expensive and their 2 wounds never seem to make the difference
(instant death by S8 or more). I never put him on a trukk, cause
if it explodes (very easy to occur) he misses one round getting out.

Mad Dok is nice with eavy armor, power klaw and 3 grot assistants. He is
always escorted by the best (stats/points) orks around: Cyborks. With
their T5 and 5+ invulnerable save and the dok resurrecting one per round
on a 3+ they will draw much firepower and make a stand.

The best troops in the orkish army are it's basic troop choices,
mainly the slugga boyz. I take a mob of at least 20, as it is difficult
for the opponent to drop their number below 12 (so as to test for
leadership) and it insures that at least 10 fighters will arrive in hth.
Always add a Nob, as he is the key to victory in hth, give him 'eavy armor
which is very cheap and a choppa and slugga. I give him a blasta-
slugga which is AP:3 (marine killer) at 12", or a power klaw if I am
expecting to face many heavy support units. Flamerz for the slugga boyz
are a very good choice as they negate cover save and they don't require
a BS roll (thank Gork).

Don't go for shoota boyz, cause with a BS of 2 the chances of hitting
even a dreadnought 1" away and in front of them is 1 in 3 !

Gretchin are a very interesting choice. They are VERY cheap, so I field
25-30 of them, along with a slaver with only a squighound. So even if they have to roll a ld test they roll at 7 and they can reroll (because of the squighound). Their role is to give a 5+ cover save to the orks and keep the enemy for 1 round in hth untill the orks charge (with I4 in the first round). They are very hardy for gretchin and they can keep most enemy units
at least two rounds in hth.

On the elite side of the roster, the 'ARD BOYZ are a good choice since
they have a 4+ save and can get choppaz and sluggaz. Very effective against assault marines in hth, as both of them get a 4+ AS.

I don't like dreadnoughts, especially orcish ones who can't hit ranged
targets with their expensive mega-blastas. So I go with Looted Leman
Russ Demolisher whose Battle-Cannon doesn't care about the orcs' BS.
I don't equip the Demolisher with any weapons requiring a BS roll.

Warbikers are my favorites. They are T5, 5+ cover save, psychoz
(pass automatically ld tests), have twinlinked weapons and get
to strike first in hth, with 3 S5 attacks each. I add a nob with a power klaw
for taking out unsuspecting enemy vehicles. Usually a group of 4 bikerz
and a Nob biker will suffice.

Battlewagon - huh, with only 6" MV and BS oriented weapons they
can only be nice targets. If you want a transport use a Looted Rhino.
If you want a heavy vehicle use a Looted Leman or a Predator. If you
want heavy artillery use gobboz ZZap gunz which don't require a BS roll
and get 5 gobbos at each zzap gun. ZZap guns are a must for taking out
vehicles, just get them in cover and shoot any heavy support in 24"
range. The 4d6 armor penetration has a 50% chance of making a penetrating hit on a land raider - not bad for mere gobboz...

That said,

have a nice day!

Author:  Hussar [ Thu Apr 20, 2006 1:40 am ]
Post subject: 

After playing with Ork for a long time here are the units and strategies that I have experience with. To keep this useful, I have not written about unit I have limited experience with.

Warboss: This is your mandatory leader. The Warboss is a great model in terms of stats. I recommend that one should only put a very limited amount of wargear on a Warboss. It is important to remember that the Warboss is extremely fragile in terms of what kind of punishment he will attract. Being as scary as he is, the Warboss is likely to attract somekind of powerfist totting marine. To this extent, putting a load of Wargear on a Warboss should be avoided. A Choppa, Slugga, Armor, and maybe some Big Horns should do. If you must give him an expensive Power Klaw, keep him out of the reach of s8 models.

Bodyguard: This unit is as brutal as it is expensive. They are extremely fragile they are likely to draw enough fire power to take down a ork mob three times their size. Nobz on foot are basically dead meat so giving them a Trukk is an excellent idea. This way your nobz will be able to wreck havoc among the enemy. Equipment is best kept cheap as this squad oftenly finds it self being ludicrously expensive. Choppas, Sluggas, and 'Eavy Armor is usually enough. Always include 1 or 2 Powerklaws as it essentially remains an “invisible” claw. I would advise against this unit in games smaller that 1850 points as they are so expensive. Even then keep it small.

Big Mek: This guy is very useful. If given nothing but a Kustom Forcefield and a nice position in your horde he can pay off his point cost without every having to fight. He is best used to protect your main body of Orks with that field and a Powerklaw is not such a bad idea. By the time he engages the enemy lines, the use of his KFF is no longer needed and he adds several PK attacks. His retinue, while potentially devastating, is simply not worth its points.

Pain Boss: This is one nasty unit. While the Pain Boss suffers from the same weakness that a Warboss has, his retinue of Cyborks is one of the valuable units in the Ork army. They take the already impressive Orks Stats and add even more at a bargain price. While they are effective in a Trukk, foot slogging it across the battlefield is not a completely bad idea. With the Pain Bosses ability to heal, using Grot Orderlies can get your mob of Cyborks across the field relatively intact. They are good flankers because they do not need a KFF or a line of Grotz as they already have a 5++ Save.

Kommandos: Getting in CC is every Orks dream. These boyz cut the boring part of running through a storm of fire and get right to the action. Kommandos have two main disadvantages, units size and armor. While the latter is not realy all that bad considering 6+ is never really going to save your hide, the limit of ten Orks can be a downer. Still, if used against isolated units or in mass Kommandos can preform great. If there is cover, use it. Kommandos are slippery and they should use this to their advatage as their movement is not harmed terribly and they benefit from a save they would otherwise forgo. In terms of equipment, Burnas and a Powerklaw are reccomended. Unless sepcialized for tank hunting, go for ten.

'Ard Boyz: These Orks are, as their name would imply, more resilient to the attacks of the enemy. They are best used as a Horde unit because they can reach the enemy lines with little harm. The suggested equipment is a Powerklaw and rokkits as they increase the Army's ability to handle vehicles and Power armor.

Skarboyz: Unless you find a good way to get these Orks across the battlefield without being subject to the hail of fire, they are not worth it. Even then they become cost prohibitive. While their excellent strength is not to be discounted, the are just as easily killed as other Orks. Now if this was a Speed Freek Tactica thing would be different...

Flash Gitz: They are essentially a mob of Shoota Boyz on steroids. Their Kustom Jobs are not worth their points, the true power of the Gitz lies in the impressive number of special weapons they can field. Flash Gitz excel when standing in the back of you line unleashing 4 to 5 big shootas at the enemy. Best used as a supporting unit.

Slugga Boyz: The bread and butter unit of the Orks. Take them and take a lot. In terms of special weapons I recommend rokkits. They give the mob something to do while it marches forward. Burnas are good too, but should be used for squad that are deploying in the front. PowerKlaws on the Nob are almost mandatory.

Shoota Boyz: These Orks are frequently ignored and shunned in favor of their Choppa Wielding brethren, but they still have their uses. Shootas are excellent when the follow your mobz and provide a mob up squad when the casualties become to fierce. When they finally regroup and continue their advance, taking casualties from the Shootas saves points as the more costly sluggas are saved. Your probably going to be taking wounds from the back anyway. In terms of equipment I suggest three special weapons (big shootas or rokkits) and a Nob with a forth and a Powerklaw. Another way to use Shootas to have them march in front of your Slugga Boyz. The trade of is that your opponent may target the Slugga deeming the CC abilities of their rifle wielding brethren to be less effective. An Orks basic stat line is still formidable enough for a squad of Shoota boyz to be effective in CC. This may result in your forces arriving into CC sooner or it will have you reach the other side with more Slugga Boyz. In this case Burnas are good.

Burna Boyz: Four Template attacks is a great way to slaugther enemy forces wholesale. The problem is getting this squad across the no mans land. Since the are relatively small, Burna Boyz are likely to draw more fire than the other mobz. Unless they have a transport, they will seldom reach enemy lines in one piece. However Burna Boyz have another use. Instead of a Nob, they have the option to add a Mek Boy to their Mob. As, Burna Boyz cost the same as Sluggas, having a Mob of these Orks without special weapons and given a Mek with a Kustom Forcefield this Mob can protect your Mobz from the enemy fire.

Tankbusta Boyz: One of the nicer things about the Ork army is that if your force is having trouble with something, it is likely that the Orks not only have a unit to remedy your situation, but that unit will be named after your problem. Tankbusta Boyz (surprise surprise) are an excellent choice when your enemy is send a great deal of armored units at your. Given four rokkits (including the Nob) this squad is able to reliably handle vehicles. As they become higher priority than your other orks, giving the Nob Big Horns is a good choice as is protect your Orks from breaking in case they suffer to much fire. Another fun way to use Tankbusta Boyz is in conjunction with a Battlewagon. Given four Bolt-On Big shootas you can unleash a massive cloud of bullets that can take out enemy light vehicles. Even armor 12 eventually succumbs to the sheer amount of firepower. 15 Shots is a lot. Be careful when using this because it puts a lot of points into a single vehicle.

Grotz: Take this unit. Grotz are a staple of the Ork army. They provide a moving wall of cover to your Mobz. Cheap enough to buy enmasse Grotz are low enough priority that your enemy will rarely fire at them unless no other target is availbe. Their Sure-Footing ability is good, but using it is likely to slow down your advance to much. Slavers are needed or else your horde of Grotz wont last turn two. To ensure that your Orks make the most of their protection, use a Squighound, and if points allow, Big Horns. As the Slaver will be at the forefront of your army, giving him a special weapon is not a waste. Rokkits if you hate vehicles or Big Shootas if you like rolling dice, take your pick. Tankbusta Bombz are also good as your opponent is rarely going to expect that mob or Grotz to destroy a vehicle.

Trukk Boyz: Arguably one of the most high priority units on your opponents to-kill list. It put all the CC goodness of the Orks and stuffs it on a ramshackle trukk bombing 24 to 31 inches a turn down the board. When using this squad, it is a good idea to deploy behind LOS blocking terrain or other vehicles as it is so prone to getting attacked by the enemy. Trukk Boyz provide an excellent flanker or transport unit. This is a great place to put a Warboss. Special weapons aren't really necessary as your trukk will either be moving or assaulting. However, another good way to use this is to load up a Kombi Skorcha on the Nob, a Burna on a Ork, and one of the two on a Big Mek loaded up on the trukk. This is a great way to flame the enemy with 3 templates worth of death. The vehicle's upgrade should be limited. I like red paint for the speed, rigger because they are just plain good, and a rokkit, because it is cheap and good vs. Power Armor.

Buggies/Trakks: These uber cheap fast vehicles have several uses. As tank hunters, load them with Rokkits and Rams. They will find the enemies back side and make them pay. The Ram is a great way to destroy pesky eldar vehicles as it automatically hits and may just blow up that falcon filled with seers. Another way to use these is as a missle. Given a skorcha, red paint, and spikes n' blades this vehicle can spell the doom of infantry. The plan with this guy is to zoom forward fast and wait for the enemy to destroy and hopefully cause the vehicle to explode. As in can only be hit on a 6 in CC, this is the perfect vehicle to kill Genestealers. If it is not destroyed, then flame the enemy. If it doesn't explode, tough luck. These vehicles third use is a screen. As they are vehicles and they block line of sight, these can be excellent screens for Ork but are better used to protect Trukks and their precious cargo.

Bikers: Ork Bikers are very expensive. However their several abilities can counter balance this major flaw. They make good flankers as they are fast and have reasonable offensive power. Unfortunately they suffer versus tanks and power armor. If against other armies, they can easily demolish troops with their psycho blastas and high toughness to keep them alive. As a screen they provide a cover save against shooting through their unit, but they are so expensive and fast they are likely to be the target of such gunfire instead.

Big Gunz: Comes in three flavors...

Kannons: What this weapon lack in reliabililty in hitting with its Frag shells or accuracy with its Krak shells the Kannon make up for in versatility. Against any enemy this weapon should find a suitable target. Despite that, the Kannon is a better tank hunter because it uses the ordinance table. When placing it, make sure you utilize its range because that is essentially its sole protection.

Lobbas: These mortars spell death for anything that has a save of 5+ or worse. They are best placed behind something and left launching their payload at the enemies units. Against Imperial Guard, this weapon can be extremely effective because it can target the fragile yet important command.

Zzappas: Any tank that wanders into the 24” no-drive-zone of the Zzappa is liekly to be destroyed. While it doesn't have the range of the Kannon or the Lobbas it makes up for that in sheep power. On average this gun should glance anything with 14 armor making it great for destroying tanks. Unfortunately, when not upgraded it has 2 suicidal grotz and a armor 10 vehicle. That means this could very well be the easiest unit to destroy in the whole game! Also a range of 24” means they will be in range of rapid fire weapons. Keeping this unit alive may be a matter of screening with lighter vehicles or just offering a more juicy target.

Dreadnaught: The Dreadnaught offers good armor and well balanced combat at a good price. This unit can capture objective and if it reaches close combat, someone will be hurting. For equipment I say Rokkits are the way to go. They are cheap and can kill vehicles, what more do you want? Skorchas have the problem that they may end up killing too much and leave unable to charge and Kustom Mega Blastas are just to expensive. Big Shootas are another option which is pretty good. These are good when you want to screen some units. Keep in mind that they can move through cover. If followed by a Mek with a KFF and some tools, a armored flank of Dreadnaughts can devastate the enemy. The only upgrade worth considering is the armor plates whichmay save your units, but only if you have some points left over.

Killa Kanz: Most everything that is true for the Dreadnaught holds true for the Killa Kanz. Armor Plating is more viable as it is cheaper. As true with just about everything in the Ork army, strength in numbers. Getting a large flank of 3 Dreads/Killas can help you win the game. There is also a definate intimidation factor n placing 9 walkers on the board.

Battlewagon: The Battlewagon is a tough question. While it is very expensive and vulnerable to heavy weapons fire, the Battlewagon has firepower that is almost unheard of. This unit may be far too expensive if used is smaller games, but it can serve almost any purpose from anti-tank to anti-infantry. One way to use this unit is to screen it with others. While moving forward it can hide behind buggies taking up to 20 orks with it. In getting across this vehicle has the highest transport capacity in the game (If there is another vehicle that I am missing then 20 is still a lot.) This vehicle(lacking a model) can be made to screen other units. If kept cheap it can pretty much obliterate any LOS the enemy has to your more important models or even objective.

Looted Vehicle:
Leman Russ Battle Tank: Everyone loves dropping ordinance. This gives the orks that oppurtunity. It is cost effective and still has 3 heavy bolters if thing go awry. Along with its armor, this makes a good tank for most armies. In comparison to a Basilisk, it may not be as strong, but the difference in range really won't matter unless your playing a 40,000 point game on a gym floor. It has better armor, hurray.

Leman Russ Demolisher: While the lack of range may seem like a downer, keep in mind that this is the perfect tank to have moving with your army ever onwards toward the enemy. When Close quarters are finally met, use the deadly flamers. With armor only bettered by a Land Raider, this unit provides an extremely devastating unit that is hard to kill. Its a good screen too.

Basilisk: In todays world of deepstrikers infiltrators and such, your enemy will undoubtly find some clever way to destroy this machine. However it is still one of the most popular choice because of the almighty earthshaker. One major advantage it has is its ability to pin the enemy. Use this to soften the front of the enemy and keep the back from retreating to far.

Author:  Niterabbit [ Wed Jul 12, 2006 7:26 am ]
Post subject: 

No Tau guide yet? Shock! Horror!

This guide is aimed primarily at casual players as there are plenty of people, guides, and an entire site (which can be found here) dedicated to the more refined Tau tactics and competitive play.

With that disclaimer out of the way, let's get straight to it.

The Tau are young and dynamic race, having only reached the status of major galactic power recently in comparison to other races like Humanity and the Eldar. Their rapid mastery of advanced technology has allowed them to produce some of the strongest standard-issue weaponry in Warhammer 40K but because of this, their close combat ability suffers. What does this mean in game terms? Well...

Pros: Tau weapons are easily the equivalent of or superior to Imperial designs. Their weapons and ability to avoid return fire make them powerful at medium/long range shooting and give most of their units and equipment great synergy with each other.

Cons: Obviously, this doesn't come without a price as Tau even the most elite Tau units are pathetic in close combat. In fact, Tau should avoid close combat like the plague as it prevents them from fulfilling their primary role in the army - to shoot things. Once Tau units become trapped in close combat, extricating them is a difficult and frustrating affair.

Now, if you've read all this and still think that Tau are the right army for you, we'll move on to the next section.

Battlesuit Commander: An interesting change that was made to the Tau lineup with the release of the 4th Edition Tau Empire codex was making a Battlesuit Commander a mandatory choice in your army. Apart from the fact that you have to take one, a Battlesuit Commander is not a killing-things type of leader in the spirit of a Space Marine Commander or Chaos Lord who can dish out 10+ attacks on the charge and decimate entire squads on his own (see Book of Nurgle for details). The best way to think of him is as a sharpshooter - if you need an important target killed, he can do that, but go try out Space Marines if you want an uber-hacky hero.

A Tau Commander is equipped with a Battlesuit so you need to fill up the three hardpoints with weapons or equipment. Most players take advantage of the fact that a Multi-tracker allows you to fire two weapons at once and take two weapons plus whatever equipment they like for the third hardpoint and have a multi-tracker hardwired. Configurations like these are easy to use but it's also easy to make ineffective configurations that are really weak. In order to avoid this, you only need to keep two rules in mind.

1) Do not use weapons with radically different ranges. If you took a Fusion Blaster and Missile Pod, you would have to spend several turns getting in range for both the Fusion Blaster and Missile Pod to be effective. Take two short range weapons or two long range weapons.

2) Do not use weapons with radically different purposes. In the previous example of a Fusion Blaster and Missile Pod, a Fusion Blaster is meant to kill enemy commanders, heavily-armed infantry, and vehicles if the opportunity presents itself. A Missile Pod, on the other hand, is meant to take down light vehicles and enemies with a high Toughness. Whatever role you decide to have them take, they will only have one available weapon to do the job instead of two.

Other than that, there are no hard-and-fast rules (even those mentioned above aren't) for what a Battlesuit Commander should or should not take. Just remember to keep him away from return fire.

Ethereal: An interesting HQ choice, somewhat akin to an adviser rather than a leader in a Tau army. They are still not particularly effective in Close Combat and are better used for their Insipring Presence rule in an army that includes a lot of Fire Warriors and other troops that must stand out in the open and risk getting shot to pieces. However, if this is the case, then take care to protect the Ethereal and consider investing in a bodyguard. After all, Fire Warriors that can shoot with the accuracy of a Space Marine for a couple of extra points couldn't be that bad, could they? Also consider a Drone Controller and two Shield Drones for protection. Don't bother with an Honor Blade either or expect your Ethereal to do well in Close Combat at all.

XV8 Crisis Suit: One of the most popular units in a Tau army and with good reason too. These guys form the backbone of your support firepower and can be configured to deal with any situation. In addition, they are also the face of the Tau army - when people think about Tau, they think about Crisis Suits and how unfair they are. Since Battlesuit Commanders are essentially wearing Crisis Battlesuits, you can apply most of the things said about Commanders to actual Crisis Suits, just remember that they are not as good shots and are more rank-and-file than the sharpshooters that Commanders are. Having said that, here are some of the more popular configurations for Crisis Suits (which can also be applied to the commander himself).

"Fireknife" - Plasma Rifle, Missile Pod, Targeting Array, Hardwired Multi-tracker (Drop Targeting Array to save points)
"Deathrain" - Twin-linked Missile Pod, Blacksun Filter or Target Lock or Shield Generator or Flamer (Most of these options are unnecessary filler to save points - you've probably noticed by now that this configuration is quite cheap and easy to use. Take Shield Generators only if you have points to spare, but they will make your suits almost untouchable by pesky guns)
"Helios" - Fusion Blaster, Plasma Rifle, Multi-tracker (Deep Strike)
"Stormsurge" - Burst Cannon, Fusion Blaster, Multi-tracker

Of course, there are so many different combinations out there that are fun to use. One mentioned in the Tau Collector's Guide, the Blinding Spear suit (Flamer, Fusion Blaster, Multi-tracker) would be interesting to try. I can't say I ever have, not having had the time or resources to magnetize my Crisis Suits' weapons.

XV25 Stealth Suit: Another favorite of Tau commanders everywhere, a Stealth Suit is the epitome of a behind-enemy-lines support unit being compact in size, capable of laying down a torrent of Burst Cannon fire, it Infiltrates, and has a Stealth Field Generator, which help significantly in protecting against return fire even if you can't duck behind a convenient piece of terrain. While it is tempting to give them some equipment for the single piece of equipment that their suits allow, they can have nothing and still perform well.

Fire Warriors: You will need to take at least one unit of Fire Warriors as a required choice. Many players will take two or more teams in order to set up crossfires with their long-range and powerful weaponry. Giving them a Devilfish is not necessary but useful for grabbing objectives and contesting table quarters in Cleanse missions. A Markerlight is useful but there are better ways to get them.

Kroot: Useful as shock troops, infiltrator push-backs, and hold-up units to tie up whatever fast-moving assault troops your opponent has. Just bear in mind that they have no armour save and will die the moment any unit with a flamer so much as looks at them. A Shaper is not worth the points and spending points on a massive unit of Kroot accompanied by Kroot Hounds and Krootoxes is not recommended under any circumstances (unless you are playing Kill-team).

Fast Attack
Pathfinders: The main source of Markerlights in a Tau army, it is well worth considering a unit to mark enemies for your units to pummel into oblivion. Their main disadvantage is their point cost, which is driven up by their mandatory Devilfish transport but they do get a free move at the beginning of the game, which is quite useful to help them get into position for maximum damage. Ultimately, a unit of Pathfinders cannot be taken lightly or as an afterthought or to fill up points - in order for Pathfinders to be most effective, they have to support every other unit in the army in some way or another. The units that make the most out of Markerlights are Battlesuits and Vehicles, which do not have that many shots and so have to make them count. In light of this role, you want as many Markerlight shots as you can get out of one unit and so equipping them with Rail Rifles is not recommended.

Gun Drones: It is hard to justify the use of Gun Drones in a Tau army. They cost more than Fire Warriors, are less accurate, and have Pulse Carbines, which even Fire Warriors have access to. They can Deep Strike and have Jet Packs and Twin-linked weapons, yes, but in general, people just don't use them. It's not that they are terrible, it's just that it is difficult to find uses for them, though they are decent expendable distractions and if they happen to Deep Strike behind any normal vehicle (most have Rear Armour 10)...well...

Piranhas: Not Land Speeders, but Piranhas still see use as fast anti-tank units that can run down the flanks, get around to the generally weaker side or rear armour of vehicles, and then gun them down with Fusion Blasters. As a side benefit, they can also kill a few Terminators before they go down and if they happen to kill a Carnifex and/or Hive Tyrant while they're at it, they've certainly made back their points. Never forget, however, that even Space Marines with Bolters can destroy them. Like many Tau units they are not overwhelmingly good or overwhelmingly bad. They're just there.

Vespid Stingwings: Although they tote Marine-killing weapons, it's hard for some players to justify using them against Marines because, should they fail to kill even one of them, the unit will return fire and a Vespid will die. In order to use them effectively, you will have to make maximum use of effective cover, fleet of wing, Markerlights, and target picking. In many ways, Vespids are like carrion vultures - they should wait until the opening volleys have weakened units and then descend upon them and pick off the remains. You start to appreciate Vespid much more when they remove the Heavy Bolter that your Fire Warriors came so close to killing. Always remember, though, to target units that you are certain your Vespid can kill without fear of return fire because they really are that fragile.

Heavy Support
XV88 Broadside Suits: Often overlooked in favour of Hammerheads because of their increased flexibility, Broadsides are actually quite effective if strapped for points. The fact that their Railguns are twin-linked makes them just as effective as a Hammerhead if you want to kill tanks and their armour save ensures that they will survive most of what is thrown at them. The only drawback of Broadsides over Hammerheads, really, is that they are a pain to assemble and that they cannot fire Submunition Rounds. Oh well. You have an entire army to kill infantry. For those of you who do not have closed minds to taking Broadsides, an Advanced Stabilisation System (along with its cute acronym) is a must for each and every one of them. For the rest of you, just open up your minds like a flower in the morning and it will only hurt for a bit.

Incidentally, Broadsides make a good case study for proving that Obliterators are very good for their points (I refuse to use the word overpowered). For the exact same points as an unupgraded Broadside, they get stats that are as good, if not better, they get the benefits of an ASS (ha ha...) for free, they can field more weapons, have an Invulnerable Save, are decent in Close Combat...the list goes on and on.

Hammerhead: The main battle tank for the Tau. While it is fairly customisable, the same rules apply to weapon configurations for the Hammerhead as they do for Battlesuits, which leaves them with only two real choices - Railgun/Smart Missile System or Ion Cannon/Burst Cannon. Many people scoff at the "Ionhead" but in reality, it can provide some helpful infantry-killing firepower, especially if you're using Broadsides to take out tanks. It's even cheaper now than it was in the previous edition, so why not give it a whirl? The "Railhead" is more conventional and is a very good configuration, giving you flexibility and decent tank-killing ability. Make sure to equip all vehicles with Decoy Launchers, Multi-trackers, Targeting Arrays and Disruption Pods. Since the Hammerhead already has one of these, give it a Target Lock instead.

Sky Ray: A flexible fire support tank in its own right but really only of use in an army that is very markerlight-oriented. You can use its networked Markerlights to spot for its Seeker Missiles or other units, making it valuable throughout the game. Give it a Smart Missile System and the standard Tau vehicle upgrades and you should be able to keep it out of sight for most, if not all, of the game.

Sniper Drones: As with many units in the Tau army, they are not overwhelmingly bad but they are not overwhelmingly good either. They can kill Space Marines quite assuredly but don't have a particularly good chance of pinning anything. Also, Sniper Drone teams cannot avoid return fire as the Spotter does not have a jet pack. However, the team does have a Networked Markerlight and Stealth Field Generators, so they really do work well as snipers. They're annoying in that way.

Author:  Rabidnid [ Sat Jan 12, 2008 2:13 am ]
Post subject: 


Nids are one of the most flexible 40K armies around, and probably the cheapest horde army because of all the wonderful plastics.

Note 1 - Nids depend on n umbers not saves, so high levels of upgrades on the lesser critters without a save is generally not worth the points.

Note 2 - Nids seem to have a critical mass that decides between winning and losing. You need at least 70 bodies at 1500 (preferably 90+) to survive the shooting of your oppoent, specifically to make your troop broods big enough to be intimidating and draw fire from stealers and warriors. The exception is a zilla list with 7+ carnies and tyrants.

List styles.

Horde style - (what I run) - its only big enough if your opponent starts to sweat and his eyes bug out during deployment. Ceapest gaunts possible is the way to go. I have stopped using hormagaunts personally because without the hive nodes of the old codex they get too far in front and tend to die. The new melee rules take away their only other advantage so they are largly irrellevant in a 4th ed army. I've just spent about $100 US to order 20 small weapon sprues to rearm my hormagaunts with spine fists.

Horde list don't need speed but instead they depend on sustainablity. Taking 4-50 models off in the first 2 turns and then explaing that was 300 points of the army when they start to gloat. That combined with the first charge by your tyrant or stealers is where you win the moral part of the game :D

Speed lists are not something i have experience with. Winged tryants and warriors feature, deep striking raveners and a couple lictors as well. They tend to be smaller than a horde army due to the higher individual unit costs and is the only list where hormagaunts might still have a place. This list depends on movement to avoid casualties on the way in.

'Zilla lists - these can simply live though the shooting and is one of the few Nid combinations that is a match for a tank company. 7+ carnifexes and tyrants is normal, with half the carnifes being the "dakka" form with 2 TL devourers and BS-3 at less than 115 points. Tend to do well in tournaments because of the massive wounds and 2/3+ saves, and because they are not a total loss versus tank coys. Troops can be anything because of the slow army speed, but are often stealers with scuttling. Zoanrhropes with synapse are a must in this list. Ccatalyst become usefull in this list because of the power of the return strikes from your dead carnie or tyrant..


Nids are all about denying the enemy LOS to your most useful units. This can be through the use of terrain or though the creation of melees that block LOS to your critical units like stealers, zoantrhopes and warriors.

Nids are all about winning in the 5th and 6trh turns. Remember that you shoot once per turn and fight melee twice in a turn. If most of your hard hitters only get into melee in the 4th and subsequent turns, you will still win with ease. Take your time, keep your units in synapse, screen your critical guys as much as possible and you will win - and don't panic, that is the other guy's job :D

To be continued...........

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