Space Marine Tactics for Warhammer 40000 8th Ed

Pre-heresy Dark Angel Space Marine

Space Marines! The legions of the Adeptus Astartes, the Angels of Death (and remember that these are the good guys!), the defenders of mankind (ignoring the Imperial Guard, the Inquisition and all). These are the guys that will save the galaxy from the clutches of Chaos (just as long as they don’t succumb to Chaos themselves)!

Space Marine are easy to play in Warhammer 40k,and you don’t need many of them to make up an army. This means that they are very popular as a first army for new players. Easy to play doesn’t mean weak either! Space Marines are definitely the army to beat. If you win a game against them then you know that you have done well!

Space Marines come in many verities, some are different enough to have their own Codex. Examples are Blood Angels, Dark Angels, and Space Wolfs. However there are many Space Marine chapters that follow the standard rules for Space Marines as set down by the Ultramarines, or close enough to use the standard rules with minor tweaks. These are called the.’Codex Space Marines’. In this section we will look at the Codex Marine, their rules and tactics you can use when playing Space Marines in Warhammer 40k 8th edition games.

General Space Marine Tactics

Space Marines are generally very tactical units. By that I mean that units are able to fulfil several roles on the battlefield. They have good armour, good shooting weapons, and are capable of fighting hand to hand. Equipped with an armoured personal carrier (Rhino or Razorback) they can act as fast blitzkrieg / shock troops too. To aid this multi role you will find that most Space Marines are armed with long ranged shooting weapons (Bolters), short ranged Bolt Pistols, and hand to hand Chain Swords.

Common Ability: They Know No Fear

'They Know No Fear'Many Space Marine units have a common ‘They Know No Fear’ ability. this lets these units re-roll moral tests. This is most useful in the Moral Phase as it can mean that you loose less troops to failed moral checks. However be aware that there are other times when moral checks are needed. An example is when you are on the receiving end of some psychic power.

Space Marine HQ Tactics

Every army needs a leader to lead it to great victories! Well mostly, as in Warhammer 40000 you can get away with not having a leader for your army, but it is a good idea! If you do take a leader, you will find them in the HQ section.

You can take several HQ units in one army if you wish. If you do then you will want to nominate one of them as your general. It is usual to choose the biggest and strongest character as your general, but the choice is yours!

Space Marine Captain Tactics

The natural leader for a Space Marine army is a Captain.  They come with different types of armour and can be mounted on Bikes, or even have jetpacks.

Captains are probably the best fighters in a Space Marine army. Both with shooting weapons and in close combat. On top of this they usually have abilities that bolster nearby friendly units.

Captains Ability: Rites of Battle

Captains usually have the Ability called ‘Rights of Battle’. This ability allows you to re-roll to-hit rolls of 1 in the shooting phase and in the fight phase. If a near by unit gets to roll to hit in any other phase, say as a result of a psychic power, then they get to re-roll 1’s then too. Also remember that the Captain is always within 6″ of himself, soi he gets to benefit from this ability too!

This ability obviously is a greater benefit if you have more units within 6″. These units need to be friendly and from the same Space Marine Chapter, but if you are playing a multi-player game, they can be controlled by another friendly player. Remember that only 1 model has to be in range, and this can be vertically as well as on the same level. Also remember that tanks are units too.

The ‘Rights of Battle’ ability means that Captains are most useful when they are in the middle of the battle. Have them well supported with other units and get them to where you are going to be making the greatest number of hit rolls! Also remember that you can have two or more Captains in your army. You do not get extra bonuses for them being together. Spread out your Captains so that they will benefit the greatest number of units.

Space Marine Captain Armour

There are several entries in the Codex Asteres for the Captain. The main difference between them is the armour they where. The choices are basic power armour, terminator armour, ancient Cataphractii armour, and basic armour with a motorbike.

A captain in power armour is the cheapest option as far as power points goes. He has an ‘Iron Halo’ force field device that gives him a 4+ invulnerable save, so this armour is still formidable.

Captains in Power Armour have the greatest range of weapons available. this gives you the best chance to adapt the Captain to your play style. Do you want more fire power? If you do upgrade his bolt gun to a combi-bolter or storm bolter. Do you want more close combat strike power in the fight phase? If you do, have a look at the melee weapons available.

Captains in Power Armour can also be upgraded with jump-packs or a motorbike. Either of these options gives your Captain greater speed. You can use this speed to jump around the table re-enforcing your tactical units or to launch a lightning strike at a vulnerable point to swing the game. Be careful though! If your Captain is caught in the open he will be a sitting duck for and enemy shooting!

Adding a Jump-pack costs an extra 2 power points but gives the captain the Fly key word. This has the unexpected bonus of allowing him to assault aircraft. Yes, if they are in range your Captain can leap up and strike aircraft in mid flight. Armed with a power fist he could do quite a bit of damage too! Truly this is the closest you are going to get to Iron Man in a Space Marine army! (though the Tau HQ is worth a look too)

Upgraded with a Bike, the Captain gains extra fire power and an extra point of toughness. Be aware though that bikes can not clime buildings. This means that bikes are better on larger open boards than city fight scenarios.

Terminator armour is thick and heavy. This means that the captain has a better chance of saving (2+ basic), and he still gets the Iron Halo ( 4+ invulnerable save) . In addition to this he can take the heavier Storm Bolter that gives him a massive 45 shots at close range and 2 shots and 24″. The Terminator armour also allows him to teleport in to the battle. He can not teleport out again though (until after the battle), so make sure he arrives in the right place. Once he’s there he is on foot ( or riding in a Land Raider if you have one). The down side is that the Terminator Captain costs more points and is a bit slower.However if he is backed up with a terminator squad you get a detachments that are really good in close quarter combat and fire fights!

Cataphractii armour is an ancient form of Terminator Armour worn by Space Marine in Warhammer 30000. It is like Terminator armour. Created using techniques now lost in the depths of time the Cataphractii armour has the best saves of all. With a 2+ basic save and a 3+ invulnerable save this armour is the tops! As it is terminator armour you still get the teleport strike ability mighty weapons. The downside in points cost again and that this armour is even slower than Terminator Armour. With Cataphractii armour if you advance you have to half the distance rolled ( so on a roll of 5 you can go 2.5″) .

Primaris Captain Tactics

Primaris Space Marines are the new kids on the block for the 8th Edition of Warhammer 40lk. The story line goes that they have been developed in secret waiting for the Space Marine Primarks to return. Much like the Clones of Star Wars. in gaming terms the Primaris Marines are what the Space Marines should have been. The classic models are not much bigger than an Imperial Guard, but in the fiction and fluff they are meant to be 7 or 8 feet tall. The small classic marines are a throw back to time when Games Workshop was run on a less professional basis (Rough Trader, or Warhammer 40 1st edition). Over time the sculpting skills have improved at GW and models have slowly been re-sized to a proper scale ( first where the Orks, then Rhinos and Land Raiders and now the Marines). After using the classic models for 25 years I am still getting use to the new larger marines, but for new starter to the game I would highly recommend starting with the Primaris Marines.

In game terms the Primaris Captain fairs very well against the classic Space Marine Captain. The Primaris Captain is one power point more but you get better weapons and one ext4ra attack in close combat (hitting on 2+ and re-rolling 1’s!).

I would highly recommend upgrading the Primaris Captain to have a power sword. He will is very useful in a fight so giving him the best tools for the job is well with the extra points in a points matched game. In a power lever matched game there’s no additional points cost for the upgrade so do it!

The Primaris Captain gets the Iron Halo force field and the ‘Rights of Battle’ ability like the classic Space Marine Captain, so what I wrote about these for the classic Captain applies here too!

Primaris Captain in Gravis Armour

Instead if protecting your Primaris Captain in the traditional Power Armour, you can choose to have him wear the new Gravis armour. The Gravis armour costs one power point more than the Power armour and reduces the Captains movement to 5″ basic. what it dose offer though is 1 point extra toughness and access to more close combat weapons. I(f your style is to have your Captain lead from the front, then it is worth the upgrade!

Space Marine Librarian Tactics

Warhammer 40000 Space Marine Librarian in terminator ArmourThe Warhammer 40000 universe is full of beings with strange psychic powers. These are not dissimilar to the magic powers of the Age of Sigmar game, but a bit toned down. In AoS wizards are a ‘must have’, in WH40k they are a ‘nice to have’. In the Space Marine army these psykers are called Librarians.

Space Marine Librarians are better than most as they can manifest 2 psychic powers each per turn. Remember that in point matched games you can only manifest any given psychic power once per turn for your whole army. If you have several Psykers think about which psyker will use which power. The exception to this once per turn rule is the Smite psychic power.

Space Marine Troop Tactics

The core of any Warhammer 40K army should be the Troop units. You should have enough troop units to make sure that you do not get out numbered.

The Space Marines have 3 main options . The tactical squad, the scout squad and the new Primaries Marine Intercessor Squads. Black Templar marines get the Crusader Squad,but should loose the Tactical and Scout Squads.

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Imperial Agents Tactics  for WH40k 7th Ed

Over the years Games Workshop have created a number of auxiliary Imperial Forces that are not quite big enough to warrant their own Codex, but are too fun to play to drop completely. These include The Sisters of Battle, Assassins, The Legion of the Dammed, and Inquisition, amongst others. Recently Games Workshop have done the right thing by bringing all these factions in to one Codex, Codex: Imperial Agents.

If you have been collecting Warhammer models for a while, or you have one of the boxed games that have these units in, you will want this updated Codex with the latest rules and updates.

Imperial Agents General Tactics

The Imperial Agents are not designed as a stand alone army. This does not mean that you cannot use them on their own. It’s just how they are designed, so let’s have a look at this first.

Imperial Agent Factions

  • Cult Mechanicus: Mechanics with optional labotomised heavy weapons.
  • Aeronautical Imperialis: Fire power on the wing and good for fast troop transportation too.
  • Adeptus Astra Telepathica: Imperial Psykers that come singularly or as brotherhood of psychers.
  • Adepta Sororitas: Guard in Power Armour, or low point Marines? Make of them what you will. They do come with a lot of framers, so they are always hot stuff!
  • The Deathwatch: Elite Space Marines on a mission.
  • Grey Knights: Got a Daemon problem? Rent a Marine has the solution for you!
  • Legion of the Dammed: Veteran Marines with firery shells and a reputation for warping out when the going gets though!
  • Officio Assassinorum: Nope, no one here!
  • The Inquisition: Oh no, not the comfy chair!

What Imperial Agents can add to a Space Marine army

WH40k Space Marines have a very developed army list, and you can find a solution to any situation within that list if you wanted to. However there are units found within the Imperial Agents Codex that are useful in specific situations. This is another case of being prepared if you have advanced knowledge of the opposition, territory, and mission.

3 of the Imperial Agent factions are special types of Space Marines. The Deathwatch, Grey Knights, and Legion of the Dammed, are elite Space Marine units. If you want to add more elite units then you can look at these units in addition to the ones found in the Codex: Space Marines.

The Officio Assassinorum is a popular addition to a Space Marine army. Their assassin skills can be very useful in certain situations. I would not recommend having more than one in a game.

Tech-priests Enginseers of the Cult Mechanicus are useful for repairing tank and other armoured vehicles. Space Marine have Techmarines covering this role, and although the Techmarines are 10 points more you do get a lot for the extra points.

The Sisters of Battle (Adeptus Sororitas), and Inquisition may be useful if you want to add cheaper gun fodder. They have a bit more bite than an Imperial Guard detachment which is the usual go to for gun fodder.

What Imperial Agents can add to an Imperial Guard Army

With the Imperial Guard the Imperial Agents really come into their own. Any of the Imperial Agents can act as Elite units for the Guard.

As usual, I highly recommend that you limit the amount of points spent on Elite units. If you over do it you will find yourself short of boots on the ground to achieve your objectives!

Cult Machanicus and Tech-Preist Enginseers give the Imperial Guard a chance to repair tank and vehicles like Techmarines do for the Space Marines. This is great if you are fielding Leman Russ Tanks and Chimera. The trick here is to keep the Tech-Preist and the armour together. Servitors will aid the Tech-Preist too.

The Aeronotica Imperialis can be useful for the Guard too. Their Valerie aircraft can ferry Guard units around the board quickly. This can be very useful to steal objects.

A Tyranid Lictor sneeks up on Sisters of Battle

A Tyranid Lictor sneeks up on Sisters of Battle

Where the Adaptation Sororitas or the Sisters of Battle as cut price Marines, the Guard see them as armoured Veteran units. The power armour and flames are just the tool for cleaning out buildings where poorly armoured Guardsman would just get shredded in close combat.

 

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Great 4 Handed game highlights armies strengths and weaknesess

On Saturday we had a great game of Warhammer with 2 Chaos forces ( Chaos Space Marine and Daemons of Tzeentch) face 2 forces of Order (Using AoS) armies of Space Marines and Tau.

Richard and I had a quick pre-game match to get use to our new armies. Ghks was the first time I have played Chaos Daemons in 40k so I was flipping back and forth through the Codex getting use to the Daemon Special Rules. Richard also got to grips with the raft of new weapons availible to the Tau since the last Codex.

In the afternoon Lee and Mark arrived for the main battle royal. Lee brought Space Marines with him and Mark had Chaos Space Marines. This is what Richard had suggested would be the case so no big surprises there.

As Richard and Lee where long time 40k comrades and because it made a better match to the background fluff Richard and Lee teamed up as the forces of order against Mark and I who where the new comers championing  the forces of Chaos.

My first surprise was when I saw the army that Mark brought. As we where playing 1000 points per player I was surprised my how HQ heavy and troop unit light his force was. It did not bode well as my force was fast and light but a bit short of solid troop and heavy support units. This brought up the first learning point, where possible, in a two handed game, check with your team mates what they are bringing to the battle or you could end up with a mismatched force.

 

It was great fun testing out my Chaos Tzeentch Daemons in a WH40k game, even though it was not a winning outcome! Many thanks to Richard, Lee and Mark for the battle.

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Space Marine Formations for WH40k 7th Ed

In the 2015 Space Marine Codex there are 10 different formations that you can add in to your army list. No you will not be able to add all the formations in to each game, the formations will cost more points than the game limit will allow. If you play a super massive Apocalypse game then you may be able to, but that is what Apocalypse games are all about!

Are Space Marine Formations worth it?

Formations usually add some special rules that can give you a gaming advantage. The cost of this is that the formations normally have a formation structure and often other restrictions too.

So is it worth jigging your army list around to accommodate formations? I believe that if the changes are in line with your game plan, then you may find that slipping the formations in to the army list. However the special rules usually do not give such a big advantage to warrant making major game plan change

Space Marine Battle Demi-Company Tactics

The Space Marine Demi-Company is a fairly strict formation of mainly troop based designed to be a core army. The advantage of this formation is that it is easier to claim contested objectives. With the Maelstrom of War scenarios taking objectives is a major part of the missions.

Space Marine Anti-Air Defence Force Tactics

With this formation you need to know that you will be needing a major amount of anti aircraft support, or anti Monstrous Flying Creature support.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Dark Angels Librarius Concave for WH40k 7th Ed

Warhammer 40k Space Marine Terminator Librarian

Space Marine Librarian Psyker in Terminator Armour.

Ezekiel and the Dark Angel Librarius Concave, it sounds like a 1960’s psychedelic pop group to me, and if you think the same you may not be far wrong!

However the Dark Angel Librarius Concave is a Dark Angel formation found on the Games Workshop Black Library site. The ebook it’s self is a small publication that has the formations special rules and not much else. You could print it out on one side of A4 (letter sized) sheet of paper.

The Dark Angel Librarius Concave Formation

The Formation consists of Ezekiel and a small number of Dark Angel Librarians. This means that the formation will fit nicely along side a battle forged formation or a Demi company formation. And you may be able to do this in 1500 points with careful points cost planning. Fitting the Concave in to a 2k game should be easy.

The Dark Angel Librarius Concave Special rules

“On the other side of the Battlefield I could sense Brother Ezekiel and Brother Paul mind link to perform a psychic blast. Now it was the turn of Brother David and I to use our skills.

Brother David was with Squad Delius a few feet in front of me. I was with squad vintners. They where glad of the extra protection my psychic hood gave them. the either was heavy with the screams from the void. So heavy even not psychics could sense it.

I sensed Brother David pick out a leader of the fallen to interrogate. Linking to my mind I opened up my skills to perform the Mind Worm, a skill I knew well but Brother David did not. With this access he reached out to the fallen but the fallen was too far away. At that moment I added my psychic energy to his to boost the range and we locked on to the mind of the fallen. While Brother David when to work opening the mind of the fallen I sensed a ripple in the warp. I was able to synchronizes with the ripple and the Mind Worm held. Brother David continued to unlock the fallen’s mind but then the link broke. The fallen had fended off our link this time and mentally numbed from the effort we needed to rest our minds a few minutes before trying both again. Time to see what a few bolter shells will do. ”

Apart from letting you field more Librarians per game, with all their extra psychic power dice, the Librarius Concave comes with a single special rule that has 3 parts basically you can pick a Dark Angel Librarian from the formation and he can form a temporary mind link with the other Librarians from the same formation within 12″. This gives this Librarian extra powers, but the other Librarians in the mind group can not do anything that psychic phase. This means that you may want to buddy up your Librarians in pairs. This will give you all the special rule bonuses with the greatest efficiency.

Conclusion

If you like to field psykers, and you have a mode to represent Ezekiel, plus another 2 psykers, then you may want to get this Data slate and give your opponent a headache!

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Dark Angel Lords of War for WH40k 7th Ed

Warhammer 40k Dark Angel Chapter Master Azrael

The 2015 Dark Angel Codex introduces the new Lords of War category and Azrael has been promoted from the HQ section to be the only Dark Angel Lords of War choice.

In the Warhammer 7th edition rules you can see Lords of War referred to on page 119. On page 122 you can see how the Lords of War fit in to the Combined Arms / Battle Forged army list.

Azrael, Supreme Grand Master Tactics

Dark Angel Lords of War and Chapter Master Azrael

Azrael, Dark Angel Supreme Grand Master and only Dark Angel Lords of War option.

Azrael is the most senior Dark Angel leader. Because of this he is the most expensive character available, and has the most special rules. Unlike most Chapter Masters Azrael‘s special rules are as much about empowering the unit he is in as it is about giving Azrael more punch. This is quite different from the other Space Marine Chapter Masters and Special characters.

Azrael’s Wargear

Azrael has some wargear. His Combi-Bolter, Plasma Gun is master crafted so the one shot plasma gun a better chance of hitting and not over heating. Azrael‘s

Power Sword is S6 AP3. This means that you should be able to slice through standard Space Marine and Chaos Marine power armour, bur it will bounce off Terminator armour.

Azrael has Artificer armour that gives a 2+ save and the Feel No Pain special rule on a 5+. These are fairly standard and not worth the high points cost. The last war gear item is special. The Lion Helm gives his whole unit 4+ invulnerable saves.

All this means that Azrael is more able to survive a fire fight than a close combat fight. This means that you may want to hold back on Azrael until you have thinned out the enemy with fire power and use close combat specialists like Terminators to mop up.

Azrael’s Special Rules

Grand Master Azrael has a number of special rules. Some of these special rules bestow other special rules on Azrael, so you need to make sure you know what you have!

Deathwing Special Rule

The Deathwing special rule shows that Azrael is, or has been promoted from the Dark Angel 1st company, the Deathwing. This special rule gives Azrael the Fearless special rule and hatred to Chaos Space Marines.

The fearless special rule means that Areal, and any unit he joins do not have to take fear, pinning and moral checks. This spacial rule should mean that pinning weapons have far less effect against Areal and his unit. The downside of fearlessness is that Azrael and company will not be able exit an assault if thing do not go well by opting to fail a moral check. All this means that you will want to pick and choose the fight that Azrael get in to carefully.

One sneaky tactic would be to have an Imperial Guard detachment as an allied detachment. This will allow you to have Azrael join a unit of 30 conscripts. Doing this will create a nearly un-shiftable fearless unit with 4+ invulnerable save and Ld10. Set out in a Congo line, that would create a unit 3 men deep and 33″ wide ( nearly 3 feet wide) or a single line 6 feet wide. Definitely an obstacle to any enemy advance! 

Warlord Trait

If you field Azrael then he will automatically become your warlord. As such you will need to roll against the Warlord table, however Azrael can only one of the Dark Angel warlord traits in the Codex, however you do have the option to pick which one. This means that you can factor in Azrael’s warlord trait in to your tactics before you arrive at the game. Other armies will have to react to the trait rolled at the start of each game.

Summary

As we have seen, Azrael is a tactician and not street fighter. Use him to empower the rest of the army and you will see that he is truly worth of the the title of Dark Angel Lords of War!

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Fallen Dark Angel Cypher Tactics for WH40k 7th Ed

Cypher - Chaos Space Marine and Fallen Dark Angel

Cypher – Chaos Space Marine and Fallen Dark Angel

There was one obvious omission from the 2013 Dark Angel Codex and the 2013 Chaos Space Marine Codex, and that was the character called Cypher. Cypher is considered to be one of the most wanted of the fallen Dark Angels that disappeared in to the warp during the fall of Caliban. Since then the whole of the Dark Angel army and their successor chapters have been obsessed with capturing or killing Cypher.

The last time we saw any Warhammer 40k rules for Cypher was in the 1999 Chaos Space Marine Codex. However the Games Workshop servitors have been busy and created the ‘Dataslate: Cypher‘ e-book that is available on the Black Library web site and available for most e-readers.

The Dataslate e-book is about 200 pages long (depending on the read text size) and covers a good deal of background background on Cypher and the rules needed to play him in a Warhammer 40000 game or a Warhammer Apocalypse game.

In addition to the background material and the rules, the Dataslate e-book also contains 6 new battle missions based on Cypher.

If you are looking for a compatible ebook reader, I can recommend the Caliber Ebook Reader. It’s so good I even donated some funds to the project! For Android devices the ‘ Cool Reader ‘ app works well. You can find this in the Google Play app store. Apple users are on your own as I do not have any Apple devices.

If you have the Cypher model, or you are looking to add some spice in to your Dark Angel vs Chaos battles, for example if you have the 2012 box set, then you will find that this e-book addition is well worth the £10.

Cyphers Profile Stats

There are 2 things that jump out at you as you have a first look at Cyphers Profile stats. the first is that at 190 points he does not come cheep! The second thing that jumps out at you is that there are some very high stat scores in the profile. It is these profile scores that indicate how Cypher should be used.

Cypher the Gun-slinger!

Cypher in akin to the old west gun-slinger. He has a BS score of 10 and initiative 8. This makes him fast and accurate by any measure. Add these scores to the fact that he carries two pistol weapons and then add in is ‘ Blazing Weapons ‘ special rule that allows him to use the pistols as close combat weapons and you can see that Cypher is designed to be in the thick of the action on the battle field.

How does BS10 work?

It may be that you have not seen a profile with BS10 before as they are very rare. How they work is that if you roll a 2+ to hit,then you hit ( just like a BS5 profile ). However the roll of 1’s do not automatically miss. If you roll a 1 then you re-roll that dice and on a 2+ on the 2nd roll you hit too. This means that characters with BS10 will hit 35 out of 36 tries. That is 97.22% of the time!

Basically if you manage to miss one roll in a game you are exceedingly unlucky!

How Sneaky is Cypher?

Cypher is very Sneaky. First off Cypher gets Fleet of foot so he can re-roll run and assault rolls.

Cypher also gets Hit and Run so you can try and split out of a close combat mile. I do recommend that you try this at the end of the combat in the opponents round. This gives you the chance to run off or re-assault in your following turn.

Cypher gets the infiltrate special rule. And remember that the infiltrate rule also gives Cypher the Outflank rule too. This means that you have a number of options when it comes to when and where Cypher can start the game.

Cypher also gets a couple of sneaky rules curtsey of the unsheathed sword that he carries. These are the shrouded rule that gives you a +2 to your cover save. This is good as Cypher does not get an invulrenable save. So hug any cover you can and watch out for flamer weapons.

The sword also gives Cypher the Eternal Warrior special rule. This means that Lascannons and other heavy weapons do not wipe out Cypher with one shot.

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Dark Angel Ravenwing Tactics for WH40k 7th Ed

Warhammer 40k Fars Attack TacticsThe Ravenwing is the Dark Angel Chapter Bike section. In the 2012 Dark Angel Codex the Ravenwing section has been expanded so that you can field an army that is made purely from Ravenwing units.

To Field a Ravenwing army you need to have either Azrael or Sammael heading up your army. If you have either of these characters in your HQ you can field Ravenwing Attack Squadrons as troop choices.

Ravenwing General Tactics

If you are wanting to play a Ravenwing army you are going to need to be very comfortable with using bikes and landspeeders in Warhammer 40k battles. Bikes have some definite differences to regular Space Marines and you are advised to try out some single player scenarios first to get use to them.

You can find the main rules for Bikes on P45 of the Warhammer 40k Rulebook. Some particular differences you will find:

  • Bikes are fast. They move up to 12″ in a normal movement phase, but you can ‘turbo boost’ to move up to 24″ per turn. On a standard 6×4 foot table, that is a big chunk of table per move!
  • Bikes are relentless. This means Bikes can move & still fire their bolter at full range. Added to the 12″ basic move, this means that any target in 36″ of your starting point is fair game! Attack Bikes are relentless too, this means that with a heavy bolter you have an effective range of 48″.
  • Bikes are tougher than regular Space Marines. They have the same basic armour value, but they are T5. This means that bolters wound of 5’s and lasguns have to roll a 6 to wound.
  • Bikes on the move also get a 5+ invulnerable ‘ Jink’ save. Stationary bikes do not have this extra save, so keep your biles moving! If you go flat out the save increases to 4+, useful if you are charging a heavy weapon position  ( did anyone say ‘ Charge of the Light Brigade ‘? ).
  • Bikes get the ‘Hammer of Wrath’ I10, S4, AP- attacks if they charge in to an assault. Note that this only applies to the bikes that get to touch an opponent, and not to the 2nd row of bikers in a big squad, but it is in addition to the usual +1 attack you get for charging in. You can see the ‘ Hammer of Wrath’ special rule details on p37 of the main rulebook.

Ravenwing Biles get a few additional special rules that basic Space Marine bike squads do not get. Specifically:

  • Grim Resolve & Stubborn. These special rules are shared with many of the Dark Angel units. The Grim Resolve is not good for a unit that you need to keep on the move. You can find the Stubborn special rule details on p43 of the Warhammer 40k Rulebook. Just as well they get the ‘ Hit and Run ‘ special rule too!
  • Hit and Run. You can find the Hit and Run special rule details on p38 of the Warhammer 40k Rulebook. Basically this special rule means that the Ravenwing Bike squads have a change of getting out of combat if they are out numbered.
  • Ravenwing Combat squads. This is like a regular combat squad except that units of 6 bikers can split in to two units of 3 bikers. This means that you can field more bike squads using the basic organization chart.
  • Scouts & Outflank. You can find these special rules on p41 and p40 of the Warhammer 40k rulebook. These rules mean that either youcan see how your opponent deploys his forces before you set your Ravenwing Bikers up, or you can swoop in from a table edge part way through the game.

However Bikes do have weaknesses too!:

  • Bikes do not like difficult terrain. Difficult terrain does not slow bikes down, but they do have to take Dangerous Terrain tests ( p90). This means that too much rough riding will cause casualties! Note that if you assault units behind cover you need to take a difficult terrain test too.
  • Bikes are often out numbered.  A basic Ravenwing biker is 27 points. You can get two basic Space Marines for 28 points, so they get nearly a 2:1 advantage as far a pure numbers go. The main areas thias effects are pure fire power, the number of attacks in an assault, and the ability to capture objectives. The more units  you have the easier it is to spread out!

Ravenwing HQ Tactics

Like any Warhammer 40k army your Ravenwing force will need a leader or two. One of these leaders needs to be either Azrael or Sammael. This is so that you can have Ravenwing Attack Squadrons as troop choices. As Azrael does not come with transport, Sammael is the obvious choice as a leader.

Azrael Tactics

Warhammer 40k Dark Angel Chapter Master AzraelAzrael is the Grand Master of the Dark Angels. Because of this you can take Ravenwing Attack Squadrons ( and Terminator Squads ) as troop choices.

Azrael does not come with any transport, and also he works better when he is backed up by a squad of marines or two. This means that if you are going to use him in a Ravenwing army you will need to draw your opponent to him instead of going after them. This may be fairly easy as a high point value character he will attract trouble. However if you place him near a strategic landmark.

Once trouble does come his way, be sure to have a squad of bikers to hand to counter assault.

Sammael Tactics

Sammael is the natural choice as a leader for your Ravenwing army. Better still, he comes with a choice of two different transport options. You can either place Sammael on his Jet Bike, or he can ride his landspeader.

Other HQ choices

Ravenwing Command Squad Tactics

Ravenwing Elite Tactics

There are no Ravenwing options available in the Elite section. The best option will be to take a Ravenwing Command Squad with your HQ, or a Ravenwing Black Knights squad from the Fast Attack section to fulfil this role.

If you are playing a scenario that needs an Elite unit, consult with your opponent to see if they let you take a Ravenwing Black Knights squadron as al Elite choice.

Ravenwing Troop Tactics

Warhammer 40k Fars Attack TacticsIf you have either Azrael or Sammael as a HQ choice then you can have Ravenwing Attack Squadrons as Troop choices. This is the only really practical solution if you want to field a pure Ravenwing army.

Ravenwing Attack Squadrons

The Ravenwing Attack Squadrons where designed to be ‘ an army in a single unit’. Because of this they are surprisingly adaptable and very useful.

Ravenwing Fast Attack Tactics

The Ravenwing have quite a choice of units they can have as Fast Attack options.

Ravenwing Darkshroud

Ravenwing Support Squadrons

Ravenwing Black Knights

Nephlim Jetfighter

Ravenwing Dark Talon

Ravenwing Heavy Support Tactics

Land Speeder Vengeance

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Dark Angel Deathwing Redemption Force for WH40k 7th Ed

If you want to field a Dark Angel Deathwing army you will want to create a Dark Angel Deathwing Redemption Force. However if you want to field a force of Deathwing in addition to a regular Dark Angel detachment then you can field a Deathwing Strike Force. You can find the Deathwing Strike Force on page 158 of the 2015 Dark Angel Codex.

Deathwing Strike Force Organization Chart

Warhammer 40k Space Marine Command Squad

Space Marine Command Squad

The Dark Angel Deathwing Strike Force has 1 to 3 HQ units and 2 to 12 Elite units. Each unit needs to be either to have the Deathwing special rule or be in a dedicated transport. There is no mention that troops need to have Terminator Armour. This means that the options are open to the Veteran Squads and Command Squads too as long as you stuff them in a Rhino, Razerback, Drop Pod, or Land Raider. Dreadnoughts and Venerable Dreadnoughts need to be in Drop Pods too.

Why field a Deathwing Redemption Force?

The main reason to field a Deathwing Redemption Force is to get a load more Elite units, and specially Deathwing Terminators. Also if you are able to field a Terminator Redemption Force then you get a couple of extra special rules too. The first is that if you team this detachment with a  Ravenwing detachment then you can choose when your deep-striking units come in ( from round two onwards). The second special rules is that Deep Strike troops can run and shoot ( or shoot and then run) when they arrive on the table.

The rules say that all units must be held in Deep Strike reserve. However Elite units like Command Squads and Veteran Squads do not get Deep Strike, so as a house rule we say that all units that can Deep Strike, must.

 

 

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