Monday, September 29, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Rylanor the Unyielding


The Ancient Rylanor features in the Horus Heresy book series from Black Library and makes a neat appearance in Betrayal.  He is an ancient dreadnought of the Emperor's Legion legion and was one of the first entombed so, having served at the Emperors side since the early days.  Naturally, this makes him a loyalist only choice for any Emperor's Children force following the onset of Isstvan III: but he is not an HQ selection; rather he is an Elites selection. 


His points value is more than a land raider.  So is he worth it?  

Well, he is a contemptor class dreadnought for a start, which gives him an invulnerable save on top of his already impressive front armour AV=13 rating.  Couple this with the Venerable status that forces results on the damage chart to be re-rolled if Rylanor's player so chooses and that makes him a tough nut to crack.  But he's not impossible to crack by any means.  A well placed melta shot will certainly take care of him with a good roll and lucky re-roll on the damage chart.  But if I were playing against him, I'd want to torrent him to death by getting rid of his 3 HPs as soon as possible.

That said, he has a high WS BS and S stat line.and will be a terror in close combat.  His ranged Kheres Assault Cannon will also give many opponents pause for thought ... and make Rylanor a greater target to take down quickly.

His final rule (Mantle of Glory) allows a morale check re-roll and benefits loyal Emperor's Children in combat.

But returning to the original question: is he worth the points?  To be honest, I think the points would be better spent on an upgraded terminator cataphractii squad.  And even then, there'd be points left over.  So kudos for including Rylanor, but even with his buffs, he is a little bit too pricey for my tastes (too many points sunk in one gamble) to include in a loyalist Emperor's Children force.  If his rules were more a force multiplier or if he were an independant character, then maybe.  But as it is, probably not.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Fulgrim the Illuminator


Fulgrim. Called the Phoenician. Sire of the Emperor's Children. Possessed of Chaos and subsequently freely devoted to Slaanesh and elevated to a daemon prince. But in the early days of the Great Crusade, still a sane and devoted general for humanity who was simply prideful and sought to be the best he could at all things, including warfare. That much and more can readily be said about this primarch. But do his rules back up his … style?

The first thing to note is that Fulgrim is one of the cheapest primarchs available and he is therefore readily in the category of "probably should take him if I can have a Lords of War" for the Emperor's Children.

His seeking for perfecting in all theatres of war is reflected in his Strategic Planning special rule which is a solid way in which his army can tailor itself to new opponents without having to re-write the army list. Also, it is reflected in his Sublime Swordsmanship skill -- the ability to have a 3++ save only in combat means the player should (must!) seek out close combat as soon as possible for him. 

But unlike his brother, Angron, Fulgrim is more than a simple melee expert. He grants an amazing +2 combat resolution to himself and his sons. Why is this amazing? Well, 30k space marines do not have "And they shall know no fear", and hence can very much be swept away. This rule alone will almost dictate the play style for the Emperor's Children: get in combat early, strike hard at high initiative (higher than the enemy at any rate!), win the combat and sweep the opponent away in one combat round (preferably). Clearly in some cases, this requires many bodies, but in others, an elite cadre with high initiative and plentiful power weapons (or similar) can get the job done. 

And there's more! He has an Alpha Legion like ability to bring on his reserves: all reserve rolls can be re-rolled as desired. Hence an all deep striking army will be hard to counter and has the real possibility of alpha striking an opponent off the board before the game terminates. But its all about getting those bodies on to the board and in to the correct positions to pull off the kind of game that the Emperor's Children want to. 

Fulgrim's weapons are nothing too special: an AP2 sword, 2+/5++ and a volkite. Get him in to combat where he needs to be, frankly.

Overall, a cheap primarch and one that is tailor made to a particular play style. Play to his strengths!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Palatine Blade Squad


One of the unique units to the Emperor's Children at the start of the Isstvan campaign are the Palatine Blades: a cadre of super swordsmen.

Effectively, these guys are close combat assault squads, without the jump packs on their backs (which they can take).  To be honest, they're a little bit like Khorne Berzerkers or Khorne Bloodletters in some respects: improved WS, counter attack, etc.  But, here's a few catches: they're all characters in the squad and must all accept and issue challenges (as if they're 40k chaos space marine characters). 

They are all issued with Charnabal sabres: a rending weapon that also gives +1I in challenges: these are a great addition to the squad and can come in very handy. 

Here are some sample builds:

5 Palatine Blades; 2 power lances, sonic shriekers, melta bombs (160 points)
A squad that is meant to advance up the field, shooting their pistols along the way and charging whatever comes in range.  Place in a drop pod, rhino or land raider to taste.

5 Palatine Blades, jump packs, melta bombs, sonic shriekers, power sword on prefector (205 points)
A dedicated, elite assault squad.  Enough said.  Except that its a bit pricey.

5 Palatine Blades, jump packs, melta bombs, everyone with power swords or power lances, sonic shriekers (225 points)
The maxed-out squad.  They're bloodletters on wings.  With power armour.  Deal with them or there's going to be a lot of dead loyalists (or even traitors?!).

Friday, September 26, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Emperor's Children Legion Rules

The Emperor's Children were known for their quest for perfection in the background literature. Hailing from a high Terran class, and then from Fulgrim's homeworld, they pushed themselves to ever higher feats of martial prowess.

But at first glance, the casual player would be forgiven for thinking that the Emperor's Children have some of the worst Legion special rules out of all of the Legions. Although I'm somewhat sympathetic to the accusation that the rules don't fully describe the background associated with the Emperor's Children, I think the knee jerk reaction is not quite right on closer inspection.

Firstly, they gain the Crusader rule. This is good for making runs, but is absolutely amazing in combat resolution. Having their enemies flee before them and cutting them down as they run is great in 30k and can really ensure they gain the upper hand through melee. Particularly if they have a high initiative (or other means of improving the outcome of a close combat, e.g., Phoenix Guard!). Considering that they also have access to sonic shriekers (bonus initiative), this is a huge thing! Doubly so since the 30k space marines lack "And They Shall Know No Fear".

Martial Pride is okay and characterful. Just make sure they don't fail challenges and I think you'll be fine. Except against units that have heaps of attacks (be wary of World Eaters and Sons of Horus for instance).

Finally, they can also have access to Sonic Shriekers. These are the early modifications that the Children enacted before their full fall. The bonus initiative resonates tremendously with the Crusader rule and should be purchased for Emperor's Children characters that are going to be going in to melee with other enemy units.

This makes the Emperor's Children a great close combat army to consider. But they're nowhere near as obsessed with melee as the World Eaters are. Mixed arms and armour will do amazing things for this legion.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Angron

Angron. The broken primarch. The Red Angel. Ex-slave. But still a slave to the Butcher's Nails inside his skull and unable to even get a wink of sleep unless he excessively slaughters all around him. The remarkable thing is that he's not entirely insane to be fair. He still is able to exert his intelligence once in a while and demonstrate he's more than a whirling ball of hate. But, to be fair, he basically is a whirling ball of hate.  He hates everything.

And quite justifiable too given his history. And there's little surprise that he joined Horus' rebellion as he felt twice betrayed by the Emperor (once when he was originally pulled away from dying with his slave comrades, and again at Ullanor).

In terms of being a primarch, he's not much of a force multiplier. At least, not in the same way that other primarchs can be. He's basically a character that is rather good (very good in fact) at killing things. Everything. And his rules reflect this. Equipped with Gorechild and Gorefather (plus a pistol if he feels the need), Angron wants to get in combat quickly and carve things up. Like his sons, Angron gains bonuses from defeating opponents. And this is the key facet to playing both him and his Legion. Whether its drop pod assault, or rapid deployment in a land raider, Angron and the World Eaters do need to get in to melee rapidly or they will not be winning many battles. But once in battles, Angron will excel. There's nothing in the game that he cannot damage (yep - he can even smash up AV14 tanks). I'm not sure how long it'd take him to bring down a titan, but since its Angron, he probably could.

Is he worth the points? Yes, so long as you realise what Angron is about: an expensive character who will excel in close combat. But he can only be in one place at one time. He needs other tanks and troops around him to succeed. And he needs a way to get in to combat rapidly. But do you have enough points left over after purchasing Angron to cause a close combat-based tabling in 6 (ish) turns? Maybe if your alpha-strike succeeds!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Rampager Squad

Long before there were Khorne Berzerkers, there were World Eaters that volunteered to have the nails implanted in their skulls. The rampagers were them.

Statistics wise, they're identical to regular marines, except they have 2 attacks base. Interestingly, they also have scouts and FNP, but these probably are not quite worth the price increase points wise.

I feel the best way to make use of these guys is to carefully consider their battlefield role. To make the most of them, they need to be in close combat (cf. the World Eaters legion rules). Therefore, they need to be in a land raider, a drop pod of some kind (either via a rite of war, or otherwise), or they need to take the jump pack option. In addition, they need to be winning the close combat to trigger some of the special rules. This means that we have to ensure they have a weight of numbers and/or are able to slaughter their enemies. The latter calls for AP3 weaponry, or equivalent, as the basic chain axes do not have sufficient AP to slice through marine enemies (although they're going to be great against xenos despite everything).

The two sample builds below try to account for these thoughts.

5 Rampagers, 4 with Excoriator chain axes, jump packs, squad champion with artificer armour and power fist (245 points)
This is an expensive version of an assault squad, but with a low model count. Note the caedere excoriators provide the AP3 needed to do significant damage and the jump packs get them in to position. Get them in to position with scouting and then fly to the assault as soon as possible.

9 rampagers, 5 with Excoriator chain axes, squad champion with artificer armour and power fist (285 points)
Place this squad with an independent character and insert in a land raider phobos. Charge out and start the carnage by at least turn 2. Use the guys without the excoriators as sacrificial anodes, or spend an extra 40 points to purchase 4 more of them (I was trying to keep points down since these guys are not the cheapest marines). Hopefully this squad will do some damage in concert with an independent character.

Overall, I can't help but think that legion veterans with power weapons might occasionally perform at about the same level as the rampagers, so its worth considering these as an alternative.

Final note: the Betrayal errata clearly states that the rampagers can be taken as both fast attack and elites. Hence you can get more of these guys than you can legion veterans. Thematically, I think it'd be great to use these guys in a drop pod assault style army. 

Monday, September 22, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Centurion Shabran Darr

"White Eyes" was a highly loyal and distinguished individual within the World Eaters. But when I say "loyal" - I more mean loyal to the whole ethos of the World Eaters. For example, he volunteered to have the Butchers' Nails analogue rammed in to his skull quite voluntarily. And happily mounted skulls of defeated / worthy opponents on his spike rack. He was a Khorne berserker of the best type already in the making.

Why he was selected as part of the first wave to Isstvan III is a mystery. The most likely reason is that Angron probably just wanted a fight. Or wanted his "loyal" warriors tested against Darr. Or just wanted to fight. A total mystery really.

Statistics-wise, he is an enhanced centurion with one extra pip in WS. But with the bonuses of rage, FNP, and rending in challenges, he does cost significantly more than other centurions. If he is a part of a loyalist force, he also gains hatred of the traitors which can be handy. The lack of artificer armour is an issue, but not a terminal one. The lack of power weapon or power fist is going to be the reason to not take him though, despite the master crafted chain axe and potential rending.

I'd personally only play him for fluffy reasons, and then I would take the option of giving him a jump pack and placing him in a large squad of similarly armed marines. He is a sub-optimal but somewhat viable choice otherwise. He will cause some damage, and is not as expensive as some praetors. But truthfully, there are superior choices (better equipped and more likely to make their points back) for HQs to be had. 

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: World Eaters Legion Rules

The World Eaters were well known to be savage and blood thirsty even prior to joining Horus in his rebellion against the Emperor in the days when they were the War Hounds. Their specialities are shock assault and exterminatus assaults (plus anything else that involved up close and personal bloodletting, such as space hulk boarding actions and so forth).

The special rules for the World Eaters, and the unique equipment that they have access too, are sympathetic to these memes.

The first rule is Incarnate Violence. The ability to have furious charge should not be under-estimated -- it is an assault winner. But not having access to it immediately is an issue. To best play to this rule, I think the World Eaters should have large squad sizes and get in the melee as rapidly as possible. This probably calls for drop pod style assaults, or deployment from land raiders with assault ramps. Having a large number of World Eater squads doing this across the board is probably going to be the key to their victory: hit hard and early and them don't stop!

The second rule is a mixed blessing. Under Bloodlust, the marines must consolidate toward the nearest enemy they can hurt. So if you have krak grenades, I'm sorry, but you're going to be heading toward the dreadnought over there. A low chance of success does not correlate with a mathematic chance of being able to hurt the enemy. Loyalist World Eaters on Isstvan III will happily charge Angron. And so forth. Gaining Rage can be very useful though, particularly in concert with Incarnate Violence -- do not underestimate how hard this can hit in the right circumstances. This rule is replaced later on in the heresy (see Massacre) whereby Rage is the norm for all World Eater traitors under the Blood Madness rule. If you're going for an assault style force (and why wouldn't you be with the World Eaters), then you are going to probably want the Massacre version of the rule.

The World Eaters also get access to Chain Axes if they wish (free exchange for chain swords). This should almost be a given (but then again, AP4 isn't going to help much against marine opponents, but you might as well take it if you're going to be fighting xenos/all-comers).

The Caedere weapons represent gladiator weapons from where Angron was a slave. Although they cost a bit more to upgrade, in some cases it is well worth it -- particularly on a Praetor or other upper level commander. Or even on an independent character attached to a squad that you are drop-podding in. Select the appropriate one based on your target frankly! Otherwise, just stick with the power fist … just to be sure.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Garviel Loken

Ascending to the Mournival - Horus' closest advisors that included Abaddon - in the latter parts of the Great Crusade, Loken is not only a character of note, but arguably one of the prime characters in the first three Horus Hersey novels produced by the Black Library (Horus Rising, False Gods, Galaxy in Flames).

Loken, naturally, is a loyalist who holds himself to the highest standards of the Luna Wolves of old. In the Isstvan III campaign, he can only be selected by the Loyalist side, and is noted for having led the loyalist Sons of Horus to take a bloody toll out of his former brethren for their traitorous actions.

His rules and statistics are interesting, with I=6, he's going to be attacking first quite frequently (one would hope), and the paragon blade should be doing some damage to enemy troops. Although he is in standard power armour, he does have an iron halo to help keep him alive.

Speaking of keeping alive, the unique rule that Loken has is the "Born Survivor" rule. Basically, he has a 5 in 6 chance of ignoring the first death caused to him in a single game. This ties in very nicely with his survival exploits in the black library serialisation and is a great characterisation in my opinion.

Other than that, he is a Master of the Legion and can function in the same manner as a praetor by being able to deploy certain rites of war should he choose.

I regard him as a characterful HQ selection. He's not a specialist in the same way as Abaddon (i.e. terminator assault), but rather, he is a troopers trooper. Take him with a large mob and get stuck in to the enemy. He won't be disappointing, but equally he is cheaper than Horus or Abaddon, but slighter pricier than a praetor but without the artificer armour. I actually think a praetor is probably more bang for the price tag. But Loken will survive longer in all probability. So there are pros and cons here. 

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Ezekyle Abaddon

Long before he became Abaddon the Despoiler, Ezekyle was a hero of the Imperium with a fanatical loyalty to Horus himself. Believed to be a direct clone progeny, Abaddon's rules attempt to live up to this in a number of ways.

Firstly, he is a master of the legion. This means like a Praetor, if you have him as a HQ, you can select any rite of war that you like. This is handy if you wanted to (for example) choose the Pride of the Legion and field a Justaerin terminator based army.

His statistics are impressive in the WS department, but then distinctly average (much like a chapter master or equivalent) for the rest. And, he does not have eternal warrior, so can be single shot killed. If you're campaigning in a narrative series of events, this may be less important as he has the "marked by dark fates" rule and can re-roll any result so that he has a better survival chance to the next game.

What he does have (that is lacking in many other characters) is fearless. This can clearly be a great boon! He also has a teleport homer which can re-roll any deep strike mishap -- unlike Horus, he does scatter when he comes on to the board. But he can deep strike in any game, regardless of the mission (normal terminators cannot do this unless the mission allows it).

His equipment is an eclectic mix. He is inside enhanced terminator armour (2+/4++) with a power fist, combi-bolter and grenade launcher. I would much sooner him be wielding a bladed weapon to be honest, but I guess powerfists are the norm on characters anyway. And in challenges, he's going to do okay regardless, should he come across some lightning claws by chance. I'd be a bit concerned about force weapons, but otherwise, I think Abaddon is going to win very well against other characters and squads -- particularly if he is inside a squad of terminators himself.

I regard him as a very capable HQ selection for the Sons of Horus, but somewhat pricey at the same time. As with Horus, his use is clearly going to be dependant on getting him in to the fray where he is needed. A few turns out of combat, or being run around by assault / fast troops and he won't be collecting his points back. But otherwise, he's an excellent choice.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Horus the Warmaster

Horus Lupercal. Sire of the Luna Wolves, later known as the Sons of Horus. Horus the Warmaster. Tactical Genius. Charismatic. And ultimately: Heretic.  But do the rules presented in Betrayal do him justice and is he worth the points cost?

Its always a risk putting numbers to legends such as Horus and the other primarchs. Indeed, before Betrayal, the only primarch that I know of with published statistics is Angron in daemon prince form through an apocalypse data sheet. But in the Horus Heresy 30k books, we will (I hope) eventually have statistics for all 18 known primarchs. (Well, 19 if you think there's more than one primarch in the Alpha Legion…! heresy!).

As a primarch, Horus has the "standard" primarch rules associated with him that includes "eternal warrior" and "it will not die" (amongst others). As with his brothers, he is exceptionally tough. But he is far from immortal and can be brought down with highly concerted efforts. Equally, as a Lord of War, he's really only going to be present in large army lists (and presumably, when the opponent allows it).

His other rules are very nice. They range from deploying on the turn of his choice via deep strike (with no scatter!), granting outflank to other units in reserve, +1Ld to his sons, seizing the initiative bonuses, making some of the army count as troops if desired (think: a full army of Justaerin terminators), precision orbital bombardment once per game, excellent armour, awesome weapons (world breaker and the warmasters' Talon which he can split his attacks between at will).

To be clear: he is pricey! But he is also a single handed army wrecker should he get in to the right position. And why wouldn't he when he deep strikes on the turn of his choice with no scatter (along with any body guard). And on the same turn he comes in, he can then call down an orbital bombardment.

There's nothing he can't handle, perhaps with the exception of fliers, when embedded in a strong body guard unit and can readily be used to single-handedly crush all comers. The only defence that I can see are (a) fliers (he'll have a tough time shooting them out of the skies) and (b) rapid armies (he's still fundamentally a terminator and doesn't move as fast as assault elements - he'll have to rely on other elements of his force to catch them, or he'll have to shoot them to bits). Everything else is pretty much fair game to him. And will probably lose. But can he do it in 6 game turns? Maybe not. He can only be in one place at one time. He therefore must rely on other elements of the army to finish the job, or encircle opponents sufficiently to wipe them out. Massed weapon fire directed at him can finish him off, but assuming he has a bodyguard unit (you did give him that, right?) he should survive the entire battle. I suspect most opponents wouldn't waste the ammo shooting at him -- getting rid of the rest of his army is a better priority frankly).

Summing up: he's awesome. He's a one man army in some respects. But he needs other elements in the force to make up for what he lacks (due to inherently being in terminator armour with not much of a shooty weapon). I regard him as worth the points (as are the rest of the primarchs) and he is a modest force multiplier (due to what he can give to other Sons of Horus units -- outflank for anything in reserve, bonus Ld). Used wisely and in concert with other elements, he's going to win battles. But take care. Don't get over-confident. Know his (few!!!) weaknesses and plan accordingly. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Justaerin Terminator Squads

When anyone first looks at the Justaerin terminators, they will no doubt be blown away by the sky high points value of the models. For such a huge price increase in comparison to standard legion terminators, the Justaerin don't seem to get all that much bonus: +1WS, furious charge, all at Ld9 and stubborn. Sure, stubborn is at a premium in 30k, but I'm not sure it merits such a massive points value increase. That said, the increase in WS combined with furious charge (and not forgetting the Merciless Fighters rules) will make these terminators highly effective in melee -- much much more so than regular terminators. But rightly, this unit has to be considered one of the most over-priced in the entire 30k army list. I just can't see them being used other than in a fluffy manner, even if they are scoring units. They're just not worth it in my eyes in comparison to regular terminators. Sorry guys.

Additionally, the Justaerin terminators are also something of a conundrum. With cataphractii armour as standard, (not to mention slow and purposeful) I would naturally be inclined to equip them as a long range shooty squad. But they really should be getting in to melee as soon as possible. Preferably as the body guard to a Praetor or other named character as they are supposed to be the cream of the crop: the literal tip of the Sons of Horus' spear.

The question then becomes how does one best take advantage of all of these facets of the Justaerin terminators. To be fair, the answer is quite simple (and repeated frequently through the Legions army lists): take a LARGE number of them in a squad. That way, the additional costs become more "balanced" (after a fashion). Indeed, many units in 30k should be taken at large sizes to maximise benefits and the Justaerin are one such example amongst many of this fact. Even so, at maximum size, they're not much more bang for their points value than regular terminators. I did mention they were over-priced, didn't I?

Here are a few builds to consider.

10 Justaerin Terminators, 2 multi meltas, 4 combi-meltas, 2 chain fists (638 points)
Didn't I tell you things got pricey? This is a whopping 638 points of doom for enemy infantry and the tanks transporting them. Equip with power axes for the main part. Hope you get a good deep strike roll…

10 Justaerin Terminators, 2 heavy flamers (560 points)
Still very expensive. Still the issue of getting them in place. Sure you don't want standard terminators instead? Are you playing Sons of Horus for the Justaerin terminators alone (I hope not!).

Monday, September 15, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Dreadclaw Drop Pod

The dreadclaw drop pod in Betrayal features as a unique unit available to only the Sons of Horus. Book 3 (Extermination) provides the Anvillus pattern dreadclaw to other legions, but in Betrayal, there is only the one legion that can use them!

So, what is this unit about? Well, its a drop pod that can also take off again. Hence, rather than being immobile all game and making a terrain feature, the dreadclaw is both a flyer and a hoverer. That said, it does not come with any armaments, apart from the frag assault launchers and instead must deep strike (and be held in reserve along with any on board unit from the start of the game). 

The uses for the dreadclaw are probably going to be limited to delivering the cargo (which I suspect would be an assault orientated dreadnought or contemptor, despite being able to also take seekers, justaerin terminators, command squads, and veteran squads). The combination of being an assault vehicle plus having the frag launchers makes it exceptionally good for this! Deep strike the melee dreadnought and then take off for elsewhere; pick up anything that requires to be elsewhere.

To be honest, I'm not sure its worth the points cost over a regular drop pod, at least in the form displayed in Betrayal. I do like the combination of the frag launchers and it being an assault vehicle, but the price is the lack of drop pod assault and inertial dampeners. But equally, no other legion has it in Betrayal, so could be used for uniqueness in the Sons of Horus. 

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Sons of Horus Legion Rules

The Sons of Horus have a reputation for alpha-strikes: cutting out the heart or weak point of an enemy in a decapitation assault from which they will never recover. Such is the Cthonia legacy.

The special rules for this legion reflect this.

The first special rule that all Legiones Astartes (Sons of Horus) have is The Edge of the Spear. The ability to re-roll abysmally failed reserve rolls is pretty crucial. It lends itself well to descent of Angels style assault drops, or terminator alpha strikes -- almost in a Death Wing kind of style to some extent.

The Merciless Fighters rule is probably the one that the Sons of Horus are best known for. Should the Sons be in a combat round and outnumber the opponent at the end of it (counting models in a fashion reminiscent of 4th edition 40k rules), then they gain an extra attack once initiative=1 attacks have been finalised. This can be very powerful and is more than anything the embodiment of the Cthonia influence: violent, savage and remorseless. It lends itself well to having large numbers of models in units -- especially the front line melee units such as Praetors, Centurions, Terminators, and Assault Squads (amongst many others!). Even having full Tactical Squads will be amplifying this rule -- so take them. But equally, this means that the Sons of Horus player must be able to get in to the target combat they're seeking out and not be a static take-and-hold army. This blends in well with the Edge of the Spear rule -- particularly for terminators assaults and drop pod assaults.

The final rule is Bitter Pride. To be honest, I think if one is running Sons of Horus, there's not going to be too much need for them to ally with other legions (other than fluff of course), hence I don't think folks are going to worry too much about this. I'm yet to see people regularly field allied 30k legions (e.g. 2/3rds of the points from one legion, and 1/3rd from another -- say the Sons of Horus!) -- I think this is an un-mined field of potential that merits serious thought. Hence I suspect that in the future when folks start playing 2000+ points games and decide on allies, this Bitter Pride rule might plausibly come in to play. As, to be fair, the Sons of Horus are rather darn charismatic and would regularly ally with many others! But even in those circumstances, surely the Sons would be the primary detachment and this rule bypassed?!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Dark Sun Reviews: The Ivory Triangle

The Ivory Triangle is to Gulg and Nibenay as the City-State of Tyr expansion is to Tyr. Except that the latter publication was more original. The Ivory Triangle certainly contains a lot of duplication from other sources, all crammed in to the locale of Gulg and Nibenay.

Physically, this is a boxed set that contains three sources books (see image below), several maps (notably of the city-states of Gulg and Nibenay) and some expansions to the Monstrous Compendium. The main book is the one entitled the Ivory Triangle, whilst the other two, detailing the city-states, are comparatively lots smaller.

The main book kicks off by describing several forts (e.g. Fort Inix). This is nice for fleshing out locations and figuring out the kind of trade that occurs (cf. Dune Trader), plus some local NPCs, but is otherwise okay but but phenomenal (a repeating theme through the accessory). The next chapter concerns itself with raiding tribes, and to be honest: is not truly ground that wasn't broken with Slave Tribes: simply more details on tribes that you might like to run in the local area. The third chapter concerns itself with the lands of the Ivory Triangle - and this is where the information is good and new ground is actually broken. The sites of the ancient battlefields in particular is a highlight, but perhaps more "on-going" war might have been preferable to cover. The Crescent Forest is also entertaining as it contains surprises like a tribe of Halflings.

The other two books on Gulg and Nibenay are solid and provide a good deal of background to these cities (with some duplication from the adventure Asticlian Gambit, and the expansion Veiled Alliance). The highlight are the maps depicting the two cities, which are fold-out style in the same vein as the other campaign maps.


Overall, its 3 out of 5 from me for the Ivory Triangle. Lots of duplication from other sources really detracts from what could have been a good expansion set. If you need details on Gulg and Nibenay (and its surroundings), then this is a great expansion. But if you have many of the other expansions, and aren't particularly bothered about this region of the planet, then skip it. It could have been much more than it is.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Dark Sun Reviews: Terrors of the Desert

For completeness, I thought I would include the Monstrous Compendiums in my reviews of Dark Sun. There are two of them: the first is "Terrors of the Desert", the second is "Terrors beyond Tyr". 

As pictured, Terrors of the Desert comes in a ring-binder format which might either entice you or put you off. Personally, I didn't care much for this format to be honest. I'd much sooner have a paperback book (or hardback, even). 

Overall, the pages of the book are exactly what you might expect: a list of monsters to be used within the Dark Sun Campaign Setting. Statistics for these creatures are given in the standard 2nd Edition Rules set for AD&D (i.e. Climate/Terrain, Frequency, Organization, Activity cycles, Diet, Intelligence, Alignment, numbers, AC, mv, Hit Die, THAC0, attacks, damage, special attacks/defences, MR, size, morale, XP, Psionics, combat, habitat/society, Ecology). 

The random encounters tables are provided at the front of the pages and are arranged by terrain (Verdant Belts, Stony Barrens, Sandy Wastes, and so forth) as might be expected.

The actual contents of the book consists of a large number of creatures. These range from the infamous Gaj which was potentially encountered in Freedom, through to drakes (earth, water, etc.), agony beetles, B'roghs, antloids, wild Kank, banshees and Athasian Giants. Of course, there are more than these, but that should be enough to give a flavour. 

I found some of the domesticated animals interesting (Critic, Renk, Ock'n, etc.) as well as the the natural predators and unique Athasian undead (banshees are from Dwarves who have failed in their focus). 

Overall, its not a necessary expansion, but one that could certainly add flavour and unique alternative opponents for the PCs to face. So its 3 out of 5 for this expansion from me. Nothing fundamentally wrong with it, and nothing terribly exciting either. It does what it says it will to be fair. 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Dark Sun Reviews: Dragon Kings

This is a hardback book unlike many of the expansions to the Campaign Setting of its ilk. Why this is the case is obvious enough from the front: it provides the playing group with the rules to expand all characters and classes to level 30. Why is this in any way exceptional? I think there are two core reasons.

The first reason is that the authors of Dark Sun wanted something fundamentally different from other campaign world. As they put it, a mage might ascend from level 20 to 30 in the Forgotten Realms with relatively little fanfare or notice. But on Athas, PCs cannot escape the fame (or infamy) that comes with great experience and background associated with achieving such lofty heights. As they cross the threshold from level 20 upward, they become the prime movers and shakers of the world they inhabit. Not for them the anonymous trips to some desolate ruins to delve for archeological treasure. Nope: that kind of stuff is for lesser levels. 

The second reason is somewhat tied to the first and was made explicit in the Prism Pentad series of books. Namely that many classes can undergo radical transformations as the go up in levels beyond 20th. For example, defilers can combine their dark arcane arts with psionics to metamorphose in to Dragons (see image, below). In the books, this is demonstrated by the Sorcerer-King Kalak attempting to jump directly from level 20 or level 21 directly to level 30 (full dragon) in one epic leap by consuming the life force of the entire city of Tyr. And of course, the Dragon himself, Borys, went mad during this self-same process.

There is, of course a Preserver mage equivalent to this. That is the transformation in to an avangion. The Avangion is nowhere near as cool as the dragon, as it kind of looks like a far too delicate butterfly ultimately (see image, below) - rather than an ultimate fusion of psychic might and good magic -- why not just a good dragon instead, I'll never understand! Again, this type of transformation has been there since the beginning, as evidenced in Arcane Shadows.

So that covers the mage classes, but what about the others?

Dragon Kings details that Warrior classes ultimately achieve a different type of fame. They start to gather followers around them. And then whole armies. As their success in combat (and indeed: staying alive against the brutal world) becomes legend, more people seek them out to enter their service in hopes of bettering themselves. This ties in very nicely with some of the ideas present in Road to Urik. But one of my big gripes in this part of the book is with the war machines that are introduced -- the book makes explicit reference to the BATTLESYSTEM rules -- what the? Who owns these? Seriously, this crept up out of nowhere! I mean, I know such a thing existed, but the chances of Dark Sun players and GMs owning these rules is slim. Hence for big epic battles, one probably wants to think seriously about how and importantly: IF they should take place!

Clerics undergo a transformation as well. They eventually become their element. At first, this may only be a small portion of their body - perhaps a hand or a big toe suddenly turns to water at will. But once they hit level 30, boom, they can become a full elemental associated with their chosen element.

Druids are handled differently to this, and instead, become one with the land that they are sword to protect, eventually (perhaps) dissolving in to the land itself.

Rogues get a raw deal to be fair. They gain the ability to cast illusion spells (not very impressive), but also to improve their dexterity score to exceptionally high levels (could be useful!) as well as some other inherent talents (detect magic - yawn).

Psionicists progress pretty normally from 20th to 30th level. But, instead of having some mind-boggling transformation, or getting boring advancement, instead, they become "noticed" by The Order. The Order has cropped up in adventures before, such as Dragon's Crown, wherein they play the antagonists. It eventually becomes a case of join The Order or perish. Although this fits in with the motif of not going unnoticed when going up to level 30, it is also annoying!

Speaking of annoying, roleplaying a higher level dragon is impossible. The book recommends that once level 25 or so is reached, the dragon becomes pretty insane and needs to be treated as an NPC due to the pain of the transformation. This is curious as I question how they're able to go up to level 30 if they're already pretty insane by half way through -- especially given the demands of the higher level spells.

Finally, the appendices give new psionic abilities as well as spells. One of the main selling points of the book is to cast "10th level spells" as mages (and equivalent priest spells). Given that "Wish" is already a ninth level spell, it kind of makes you wonder what can be achieved with 10th level psionic enchantments! Some of the spells are nice: erecting a mountain fortress (yep: its a 10th level actual psionic enchantment) means you are changing the shape of the world and building your very own fortified structure to camp out in. Sure, "Wish" could also do this (technically).  What about creating a huge amount of vegetation, say: an entirely new jungle. Yep: a tenth level spell can also do that. On Athas, the desert planet. So what role does "Wish" and "Limited Wish" have in such a game? In my opinion they could have just been removed from the game. But then, there's also the argument that Wish spells are unreliable. Tenth level psionic enchantments do what you want them do with no obvious drawbacks!

Overall, this book is about 4 out of 5 stars from me. There are significant oddities contained within that almost made it 3 out of 5, but its a book that is nice to have (but not necessary). Perhaps its one for the GMs/DMs only, or the mildly curious players. Either way, the chances of making it to level 30 on Athas are rather small.


Monday, September 8, 2014

Dark Sun Reviews: The Will and The Way

The Will: A person's innate potential for psionic ability and mastery.

The Way: The explicit and rigorous study and advance of psionic abilities.

This tome is one that should be regarded as reasonably essential for the Dark Sun Campaign as it probes the background of, and expands, the entire Psionic background that permeates all of Athas. But why should one have both The Complete Psionics Handbook -and- this one to provide the background? Well, the handbook is a generalist tome that provides a reasonable overview of the psionicist class, whilst the Will and the Way gives the essential Athasian twist to everything. 

The introduction to the book provides an overview and how the Way emerged from Tarandas of Raam's school for the under-privelidged to have access to psionic training - thus ensuring that psionics would forever be the "great leveller" of Athasian society. Every playable race on Athas has psionics. Hence every PC also has them. But only a few are followers of the Way and therefore can consider themselves full psionicists - everyone else gains only wild (random) talents. 

The first two chapters of the book delve in to some detail about how psionics interact with society, including how the various races regard psionics, and psionics around the Tyr region. The latter of these focuses on the various psionic schools around the major cities (sometimes with maps!) which provide a number of nice plot hooks for use by inventive GMs. 

Various character kits feature in the third chapter. Of note, I particularly like the Sensei (of which one of my group had as a character kit back in the day). A blend of psionics with martial arts, the sensei is adept at close combat melee and dangerous, but provides the group with a notable combat spearhead coupled with strong psionic aptitude.

The third chapter on proficiencies is moderately passable, but the chapter after that on mental combat is where it starts to get much more interesting. It really expands what is presented in the complete psionics handbook with a very large chart on which psionic attack gets what die roll bonus against what psionic defence. The book introduces new concepts (harbingers and constructs) which better tie in with the background fluff presented in the Prism Pentad series. So, for example, if your attack is in the form of a bird of prey, and you put up a defence of a brick wall, the bird simply flies over the wall. Hence the bird would get a large bonus to the mental attack. This is what is essentially encapsulated in the large chart of attacks and defences. 

The next two chapters delve in to the psionic disciplines (providing a very exhaustive listing of powers and their classifications and identifies what powers should be gained versus PC level) and research & meditation. These two techniques can open up new powers for the the psionicist and High Psionic powers (which are intended as the ultimate powers … which is somewhat curious given psionic enchantments that are possible when blended with preserving or defiling magic as used by avangions and dragons, but still very cool and very welcome additions). 

The final proper chapter concerns itself with something that I think needs to be in every game of Dark Sun: psionic items. Whether these items have a personality of their own, or are the remnant intellect of a person now trapped and encased within an item, they should be more common on Athas than anywhere else in the Dungeons and Dragons universe -- particularly given how much time has supposedly elapsed since the appearance of psionics in the Dark Sun timeline.  Indeed, the later book "Psionic Artifacts of Athas" takes this though process to its natural conclusion. As well, rules for PCs creating such items are presented. 

In the appendix a slew of new psionic powers are presented. These include those that are more Athasian in implementation than the psionic handbook, coupled with more complete charts than found elsewhere (e.g. for wild talents). 

Overall, this is a 4.9 out of 5 book for me. Sure you can run a Dark Sun campaign without it (which is the only reason it doesn't get 5 out of 5). But it'd be much richer with it! Twist my arm a bit, and its 5 out of 5. Which along with Earth, Air, Fire and Water, makes this book one of the two best products of the Dark Sun line beyond the campaign setting! Enjoy.

Friday, September 5, 2014

And the Emperor didn't know Alpharius' mind

Spoiler Warning.
If you have not read "Vengeful Spirit" by Graham McNeill and you don't want to know a single detail about what's inside the book, then read no further.

Seriously. Stop reading this post.

Because I'm going to spoil an entire sentence from that book for you.

Still reading?  You sure you want to? Had enough of my warnings?  Good for you.

Vengeful spirit is full to the brim with plot lines that are either carried on from other books in this series, or from the audio dramas about Garro and colleagues. To be fair, the book could have been split in to two books to better tie everything up (and make some of the other characters a bit more, ummm, rounded and less "fallen in to the background", but hey, its a book about Horus and big battles: so you pay money and take a chance if you like the latter).

One line in the book did stand out to me in particular. The Emperor has a wax lyrical moment with other players on Terra and makes the passing comment (paraphrasing here): what chance did my son Alpharius give to my plan?

This is interesting as it indicates that the Emperor simply did not know that Alpharius siding with Horus was part of a wider ploy. Hence although the Emperor is very powerful, he has strong limits and really doesn't see things that one might imagine he might intuitively (or psychically) be able to discern. Equally, he was a tiny bit distracted at this point in the chronology due to Magnus having smashed the wards around the Terra web way gate. So, forgivable, perhaps.

If only the Emperor and Malcador knew that the Alpha Legion were secretly loyal. That could have shaken things up by a good margin...

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Legion Malcador Assault Tank

The final entry in the main Heresy-era army list (don't worry: I haven't forgotten about the legion specific units or Mechanicum -- they're going to be written in the coming weeks and months) is the Malcador.

The thing that sets the Malcador apart from other super-heavy Lords of War entries in the army list is that it is a fast vehicle. This has obvious application for armies that deploy rapidly, or from reserve. The key here is to figure out what role you want for the Malcador to play. Is it a dakka style tank focussed on anti-infantry duty or is it a bit more anti-tank? Clearly this will depend upon how the rest of the army is constructed. But I will point out that as a super-heavy, the tank can fire its weapons independently and at different targets every turn, so a combination of weapons and purposes can be achieved here as well.  With that in mind, here are 3 builds: one anti-tank, one anti-infantry, and one somewhere in-between.

Legion Malcador Assault Tank with standard battle cannon, hull-mounted auto cannon, Autocannons on sponsons, armoured ceramite, pintle-mounted heavy flamer and a space marine legion crew (370 points)
A large range of weaponry, mostly focusing on dakka and rate of fire. This is the anti-infantry tank. The pintle-mounted heavy flamer is for anti-charging duty in the main part, but I guess a Salamanders tank could use heavy flamer sponsons as well.

Legion Malcador Assault Tank, with twin-linked lascannons, demolisher cannon, lascannon sponsons, armoured ceramite, hunter-killer missile, pintle-mounted combi-melta, space marine legion crew (410 points)
This one is distinctly more anti-tank, sporting more high strength weapons and a lower rate of fire power than the one above.

Legion Malcador Assault Tank, Battle Cannon, Demolisher Cannon, Heavy Bolter sponsons, armoured ceramite, hunter-killer missile, pintle-mounted heavy stubber, command tank, space marine legion crew (410 points)
Well, this one is a mixed bag, leaving only the flamers at home. Not sure what role this has, but is an illustration of how one can build a menagerie of weaponry on a tank.

Legion Malcador Assault Tank, Battle Cannon, Demolisher Cannon, Heavy Flamer Sponsons, pintle-mounted heavy flamer (350 points)
A lesser tank and cheaper one in the same vein as the one above. But this time, packing in the heavy flamers to make it more suitable for Salamander type legions out there. 

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Legion Cerberus Heavy Tank Destroyer

The neutron laser battery on the Cerberus is immensely powerful -- perhaps one of the most powerful weapons in the game outside of a "D"-class weapon. But it does have the drawback of the "feedback" rule. This means that if we're not successful with a penetration roll, there's a 1 in 6 chance that the Cerberus will suffer a penetrating hit. To be honest though, this is a minor drawback and not very likely to happen -- especially given that super-heavy tanks will roll two die for armour penetration. And then on top of that, it gets d3 shots. Which makes it kinda random compared to tanks like the Typhon.

The Cerberus is also a durable tank with AV14 on the front and 2 Structure Points (think of structure points as being triple Hull Points if it helps). Hence whilst it is not invulnerable, it can certainly pump out damage and stay put in the game as long as needed.

There are a wide variety of options available to the tank. But to be honest, this beast is designed to take out enemy armour. As such, I think that any build should complement this purpose. Therefore I would advocate taking las cannon sponsons over heavy bolter sponsons and perhaps even a hunter-killer missile.

Here's my (singular) proposed build for the Cerberus:

Legion Cerberus Heavy Tank Destroyer, Lascannon sponsons, Hunter-killer missile, Armoured ceramite (465 points)
This is my anti-tank build. You'll notice that I've avoided taking any pintle-mounted weapon. I think many of them have a short range compared to the primary weapon (or indeed: the lascannons), or are distinctly anti-infantry rather than anti-tank. I could imagine taking a multi-melta if I thought I could position the tank within the appropriate range (certainly the built in flare shield can help here!), or perhaps a havoc launcher to supply pressure on to the contents of transport tanks I've popped open. But I'll leave that to the taste of the controlling player to decide. 

Monday, September 1, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Legion Thunderhawk Transporter

Imagine the Legion Thunderhawk Gunship, but without all of the guns and ammunition. Now replace the transport capacity with either two rhino chassis, or one land raider chassis. And you have the Thunderhawk Transporter.

I like the concept of the Transporter -- it is what the background fluff describes it as pretty accurately and the ability to place down your tanks on the battlefield where you want them to be is terrific (as is picking them up again later).

But beyond that, I start to question what it is this superheavy Lord of War can do. Without the armaments of the Thunderhawk Gunship, it doesn't actually do too much. So unless the battlefield that you are playing on is particularly vast, I think I would pass on this flyer to be perfectly honest. Your tanks will trundle up to their desired position within a couple of turns in all likelihood unless you have a super sized Apocalypse pitch to play on. But more than that: there just aren't enough turns in the game for it to be truly useful (considering it won't come on on the first turn, and dropping off and picking up probably won't both occur inside one game - emphasis on probably). And on the turn that the transporter is behaving as a stationary skimmer, its probably going to be blasted apart. Unless you have multiple transporters, of course. But being a Lord of War, that simply isn't going to happen. Hence I disfavour this unit almost in entirety.

That said, here is my suggestion for its build:

Legion Thunderhawk Transporter, Chaff Launcher, Armoured Cockpit (480 points)
Take up to six Hellstrike missiles if you would like to beef up the armaments beyond the heavy bolters. The logic behind this build is similar to the Thunderhawk Gunship. 

Horus Heresy 30k Reviews Summary Page

This is the summary page for the Warpstone Flux Horus Heresy 30k Reviews.

Entries are listed according to the main army firstly, then broken down per force organisation chart slot, and then individual Legions and Mechanicum. Note that this is still a work in progress. Eventually, I will review all of them, please be patient!

DONE: Betrayal, Massacre, Extermination, Conquest, Tempest.
IN PROGRESS: Retribution.


Legion Army List.

HQ
Praetor
Centurion and Consuls (incl. Librarian, Chaplain, etc.).
Other Consuls (Delegatus, Praevian, Herald).
Command Squad
Damocles Command Rhino

ELITES
Veteran Tactical Squad
Destroyer Squad
Terminator Squad
Techmarine Covenant
Apothecarion Detachment
Dreadnought Talon
Contemptor Dreadnought Talon
Rapier Weapons Battery
Mortis Dreadnought
Contemptor-Mortis Dreadnought

TROOPS
Tactical Squad
Assault Squad
Breacher Siege Squad
Tactical Support Squad
Reconnaissance Squad
Rhino Armoured Carrier
Drop Pod
Legion Dreadnought Drop Pod

FAST ATTACK
Seeker Squad
Outrider Squad
Attack Bike Squadron
Jetbike Sky Hunter Squadron
Land Speeder Squadron
Storm Eagle Assault Gunship
Tarantula Sentry Gun Battery
Primaris-Lightning Strike Fighter
Javelin Attack Speeder Squadron
Anvillus Pattern Dreadclaw Drop Pod
Xiphon Pattern Interceptor

HEAVY SUPPORT
Heavy Support Squad
Predator Strike Armour Squadron
Land Raider Battle Squadron
Artillery Tank Squadron
Vindicator
Spartan Assault Tank
Caestus Assault Ram
Deathstorm Drop Pod
Whirlwind Scorpius
Sicaran Battle Tank
Legion Kharybdis Assault Claw
Legion Fire Raptor Gunship
Achilles-Alpha Pattern Land Raider
Sicaran Venator Tank Destroyer
Deredeo Pattern Dreadnought
Leviathan Pattern Siege Dreadnought Talon

LORDS OF WAR
Fellblade Super-Heavy Tank
Typhon Heavy Siege Tank
Thunderhawk Gunship
Thunderhawk Transporter
Cerberus Heavy Tank Destroyer
Malcador Assault Tank
Legion Glaive Super-Heavy Special Weapons Tank
Imperial Avenger Strike Fighter
Legion Falchion Super-Heavy Tank Destroyer
Legion Stormblade Super-Heavy Tank
Sokar Pattern Stormbird

FORTIFICATIONS
Imperial Castellum Stronghold
Aegis Defence Line


THE INDIVIDUAL LEGIONS
Legio I: Dark Angels Legion
Legion Rules

Legio II: Unknown

Legio III: Emperor's Children Legion
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Fulgrim the Illuminator
HQ: Captain Saul Tarvitz
HQ: Lord Commander Eidolon
Elites: Palatine Blade Squad
Elites: Phoenix Terminator Squad
Elites: Rylanor the Unyielding
Heavy Support: The Kakophoni

Legio IV: Iron Warriors Legion
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Perturabo
HQ: Warsmith (a type of Legion Praetor)
HQ: Erasmus Golg
HQ: Kyr Vhalen
HQ: Nârik Dreygur (Praevian Consul)
Elites: Tyrant Siege Terminator Squad
Heavy Support: Iron Havoc Support Squad

Legio V: White Scars Legion
Legion Rules

Legio VI: Space Wolves Legion (not yet published)

Legio VII: Imperial Fists Legion
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Rogal Dorn
HQ: Sigismund
HQ: Alexis Polux
Elites: Templar Brethren
Fast Attack: Phalanx Warder Squad

Legio VIII: Night Lords Legion
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Konrad Curze
HQ: Sevatar
HQ: Flaymaster Mawdrym Llansahai
Elites: Terror Squad
Fast Attack: Night Raptor Squad

Legio IX: Blood Angels Legion
Legion Rules

Legio X: Iron Hands Legion
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Ferrus Manus
HQ: Iron Father (a type of Legion Praetor)
HQ: Iron Father Autek Mor
HQ: Spearhead-Centurion Castrmen Orth
Elites: Gorgon Terminator Squad
Elites: Medusan Immortals Squad

Legio XI: Unknown

Legio XII: World Eaters Legion
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Angron
HQ: Centurion Shabran Darr
HQ: Kharn the Bloody
Elites and Fast Attack: Rampager Squad
Elites: The Red Butchers

Legio XIII: Ultramarines Legion
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Roboute Guilliman
HQ: Captain Remus Ventarus
HQ: Damocles Command Rhino
Elites: Invictarus Suzerain Squad
Elites: Honoured Telemechrus
Fast Attack: Locutarus Storm Squad
Heavy Support: Fulmentarus Terminator Strike Squad

Legio XIV: Death Guard Legion
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Mortarion the Reaper
HQ: Calas Typhon
HQ: Section Leader Crysos Morturg
HQ: Marshal Durak Rask
Elites: Deathshroud Terminator Squad
Heavy Support: Grave Warden Terminator Squad

Legio XV: Thousand Sons Legion (not yet published)

Legio XVI: Sons of Horus Legion (formerly: Luna Wolves Legion)
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Horus the Warmaster
HQ: Ezekyle Abaddon
HQ: Garviel Loken
HQ: Maloghurst the Twisted
Dreadclaw Drop Pod
Elites: Justaerin Terminator Squad
Fast Attack: Reaver Attack Squad

Legio XVII: Word Bearers Legion
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Lorgar Aurelian
HQ: High Chaplain Erebus
HQ: Kor Phaeron
HQ: Hol Beloth
HQ: Zardu Layak, The Crimson Apostle
HQ: Anakatis Kul Blade-Slaves
Elites: Gal Vorbak Dark Brethren
Elites: Mhara Gal Tainted Dreadnought
Fast Attack: The Ashen Circle

Legio XVIII: Salamanders Legion
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Vulkan
HQ: Cassian Dracos
HQ: Lord Chaplain Nomus Rhy'tan
Elites: Firedrake Terminator Squad
Heavy Support: Pyroclast Squad

Legio XIX: Raven Guard Legion
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Corvus Corax
HQ: Strike Captain Alvarex Maun
HQ: Moritat-Prime Kaedes Nex
Elites: Mor Deythan Strike Squad
Fast Attack: Dark Fury Attack Squad
Fast Attack: Raven Guard Darkwing Pattern Storm Eagle Gunship

Legio XX: Alpha Legion 
Legion Rules
Lords of War: Alpharius
HQ: Armillus Dynat
HQ: Exodus
HQ: Saboteur (a type of legion consul, see here for a tank-killer combo)
HQ: Autilon Skorr (Delegatus consul)
Elites: Lernaean Terminator Squad
Fast Attack: Headhunter Kill Teams



MECHANICUM ARMY LISTS

Ordo Reductor.
HQ: 
Magos Reductor Calleb Decima
Magos Reductor
TROOPS: 
Mechanicum Thallax Cohort
Mechanicum Land Raider
LORDS OF WAR:
Warhound Scout Titan
Reaver Battle Titan
Warlord Battle Titan

Legion Cybernetica.
HQ:
Magos Dominus
ELITES:
Enginseer Auxilla
Myrmidon Secutors
TROOPS: 
Mechanicum Thallax Cohort
Legio Cybernetica Castellax Class Battle-Automata
Tech-Thrall Adsecularis
FAST ATTACK:
Crusade Fleet Support Wing (select from Primaris-Lightning Strike Fighter; Imperial Avenger Strike Fighter; Legion Storm Eagle Assult Gunship)
HEAVY SUPPORT:
Myrmidon Destructors

Taghmata Omnissiah.
HQ:
Magos Prime
Archmagos Inar Satarael
Magos Reductor Calleb Decima
Magos Dominus
ELITES:
TROOPS:
Adsecularis Covenant
FAST ATTACK:
Tarantula Sentry Gun Battery
Crusade Fleet Support Wing (select from Primaris-Lightning Strike FighterImperial Avenger Strike FighterLegion Storm Eagle Assult Gunship)
HEAVY SUPPORT:
Thanatar Class Siege-Automata Maniple
Thanatar-Cynis Class Siege Automata Maniple
Thanatar-Calix Siege-Automata
Krios Battle Tank Squadron
Myrmidon Destructors
Mechanicum Land Raider

LORDS OF WAR:
Mechanicum Questoris Knights
Mechanicum Ceratus Knight-Lancer
Falchion Super-Heavy Tank Destroyer
Warhound Scout Titan
Reaver Battle Titan
Warlord Battle Titan

IMPERIAL ARMY

Solar Auxilia.  Imperial Army and Cults.
(Reviews done, links to be added here at later date)


QUESTORIS KNIGHTS ARMY

Rules: Questoris Knights Household Ranks
Ceratus Knight-Acheron
Ceratus Knight-Castigator
Ceratus Knight-Lancer
Questoris Knight Errant
Questoris Knight Magaera
Questoris Knight Paladin
Questoris Knight Styrix

HQ: Archmagos Draykavac


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