Introduction.The Word Bearers legion is an incredibly powerful one in its own right. I think that many players overlook just how good their basic rules are. The ability to roll 3d6 and take the lowest 2 for leadership purposes is absolutely excellent. Combined with being able to have a bonus to sweeping advances, they can readily clear a board through good close combat.
The other thing that the Word Bearers can do that other legions cannot is to take Daemon Allies and plentiful psykers (NB: at the time of writing, I know nothing about the Thousand Sons -- I hope they're better in the psychic department than the Word Bearers are). In today's army list, I wanted to explore this by looking at a legion army list that features Erebus -- the chief architect of the Heresy -- at the helm combined with the Word Bearers rite of war: The Dark Brethren.
High Chaplain Erebus (195 points).
Here he is in all his glory. He is being used here to fulfil the Chaplain requirement for the Word Bearers special rules restrictions.
Diabolist Consul, Burning Lore, Jump Pack, Tainted Weapon, Melta Bombs (155 points).
More psychic power here, with a jump pack.
Diabolist Consul, Burning Lore, Tainted Weapon, Melta Bombs (135 points).
As above, but without the jump pack
Legion Tactical Squad, 20 members, sergeant with power fist and artificer armour, legion vexilla (285 points).
A large blob of troops. Take the diabolist without the jump pack to accompany these guys.
An all-purpose assault squad to go with the diabolist with the jump pack.
Be'Lakor (350 points).
Nasty, just nasty! You won't be making any friends here folks! If you're feeling a bit less nasty though, use Fateweaver instead ;)
11 Pink Horrors of Tzeentch (99 points).
To take hold of objectives, of course. Well, not really, they're here for the extra psyker levels.
11 Horrors of Tzeentch (99 points).
Plenty of magic here to do something with.
6 Screamers of Tzeentch (150 points).
Zooming across the skies to take a munch out of tanks and terminators alike.
there are still 52 points to play around with here -- take some more cheese with the cheese, or better yet: an anti-air option. Dark Channeling for the Assault Squad is not a bad option either!
How it works.
This list focuses on psychic power a whole lot. Combining 3 psyker HQs, alongside Be'Lakor, and the Pink Horrors makes for a potentially devastating list. Sadly, the list also has very little way of taking care of fliers. Good luck with that.
Try to get some daemon summoning going on with all these powers if at all possible. Remember that as daemons, everyone can gain access to the malefic daemon option and have Be'Lakor do some summoning.
Use Be'Lakor to hide in the shadows and make a surprise assault. Use the Assault Squad to take out tanks. Subtle, this list is not. But it is not unbeatable, it is simply strong and can do some serious summoning if allowed to go on unchecked.
This list certainly needs an anti-air option. That is the first thing I would look to expand in to. Beyond that, I think that some more bodies on the ground in power armour would not go amiss either. I would have liked to have taken some Gal Vorbak, or perhaps a tainted Mhara Gal dreadnought as well. I would be tempted to switch one of the diabolist to a full level 3 librarian as well.
To get the list under 1500 points, at least one of the diabolists has to go, and I'd replace Be'Lakor with a pair of (or even a single) Heralds of Tzeentch.
[Image Credit: Paulio Geordio; distributed under CC BY 2.0]