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Blood Angel Tactics

In this section we will be looking at the Blood Angel Space Marine army and their tactics.

Hopefully you have become familiar with the Codex (Ultra Marine) Space Marines before you get here, so we will look at how the Blood Angel Space Marines work.

To make best use of these notes you will need a copy of the Warhammer 40k Rulebook and the Codex Blood Angels. If you do not own a copy of these two rulebooks, then you will need access to them.

What is different about the Blood Angels? - Assault Army

The main difference between the Blood Angel Space Marine Chapter and the regular Codex Space Marine army, is that the Blood Angel Space Marines are much more assault and close combat specialists.

This assault speciality shows in several ways. First off they are faster than regular Space Marines. Assault Squads are troop choices, Land Raiders can be taken as dedicated transport, Dreadnoughts have been moved from Elite to Heavy Support choices, you can upgrade a full squadron of Land Speeders to Typhoons, and there is a new addition to the Space Marine transport choices the 'Stormraven Gunship'.

The next way that the Blood Angels Space Marines are different to the Codex Space Marines is that the Blood Angels display their close combat speciality is in the 'Red Thirst' special rule. This gives 1 in 6 of your troops the 'Furious Charge' special rule.

Blood Angel HQ Tactics

As the Blood Angel Space Marine Chapter has been around for a while, there are a number of special character available. Be careful with special characters, they come with a number of special rules, and the points cost will be increased because of them. If you do not use these special rules, either because you for get about them, or because you do not get the chance, then these points will be wasted!

Commander Dante Tactics


Commander Dante is the biggest, baddest of all the Blood Angel commander. as such he has a better stats line than the other Blood Angels, and he comes with a number of special rules. however these extras come with a cost, a points cost. For the same points that it costs to add Commander Dante to your army, you could add a Land Raider tank. This means that is will be well worth your time getting to know what Dante can do for you and the special rules and equipment that he has.

Commander Dante's Strength and Weapons

Commander Dante's Toughness and Special Rules

Chapter Master Gabriel Seth Tactics

The Chapter Master Gabriel Seth s different from the other characters here on the basis that he is not a Blood Angel character at all. This character is the Chapter Master of the Flesh Teares, a spin off chapter founded on the Blood Angels chapter. This means that if you follow the fluff (background story) you should not really be using him alongside other Blood Angel named characters. However in the Blood Angel Codex there is nothing written to say that this can not happen. The usual fixes are:

1: The Chapter Master Gabriel Seth was visiting the Blood Angels or the other way around, and the Chapter was attacked, or got bored and attacked someone else.

2: This is not the Chapter Master Seth, but a Blood Angels character that has all the same stats, special rules, and points of the original.

3: Dump the fluff.

Chapter Master Gabriel Seth is a closer combat specialist. because of this you will want to get him in to combat as fast as possible. The best way to do this will be to place him in a troop transporter, whether this is a Rhino, Land Raider, or Stormraven will depend on the number of points you can spend on him. For smaller battles the Rhino is a good choice and you can spend the points saves form the more expensive options to supply and tool up a command squad for him.

Chapter Master Gabriel Seth Strength and Weapons

Chapter Master Gabriel Seth does come with a Blot Pistol, but his main weapon is a double handed sword called Blood Reaver. This sword increases Gabriel Seth's strength to a point where he will instant kill most Space Marines and any infantry model as tough or less. This means that it is a pretty good character killer. For creatures that are tougher than the average Space Marine (T6 Tyranids?) you are still going to wound them much easier than a regular Marine. In the case of most of the Tyranid Monstrous creatures this will be wounding on 2's still.

It is a Rendering weapon too. This means that if all the attacks are focused on one character, you may expect about 1:2 of 50/50 chance of getting a rendering hit too. However it is not a power weapon, so it does not ignore armour automatically.

Whirlwind of Gore

Ok so Gabriel Seth's sword Blood Reaver will instant kill most characters that you wound. So how about a special rule that will allow you to wound multiple models automatically! That is exactly that Gabriel Seth's Whirlwind of Gore special rule does. Instead of your normal attacks you get 1 automatic hit per base to base model. This does not include models offering supporting attacks, and all the models will get a save as no rolls to wound means that you do not get any rendering rolls either.

Chapter Master Gabriel Seth Toughness and Special Rules

In a universe where the Space Marine is the norm. Chapter Master Gabriel Seth is just a bit better than average. With 2 point better Weapon Skill and 1 point more Initiative that the basic Maribe, this is enough to give him the upper hand in most fights, but you still need backup if you are facing real close combat specialists. Gabriel Seth's Iron Halo will give him protection in most situations both in the open and in combat.

As Chapter Master Gabriel Seth has the highest possible leadership. This is worth remembering then you have to face leadership based tests. As the leadership will affect the rest of the units he is with, this bonus in magnified if he is part of a larger unit. So when you are looking at picking a command squad for Gabriel Seth, you want to look at having more models that are less tooled up, rather than a few overly expensive individuals.

Astorath the Grim

The Sanguinor, Exemplar of the Host

Mephiston, Lord of Death

Captain Tycho


Reclusiarch (Chaplin)

Blood Angel Elite Tactics

The Elite section of a 40k army list is usually where you find the specialists of the army list.

Blood Angel Chaplin Tactics

Sanguinary Guard

Furioso Dreadnought

Terminator Squad

Blood Angel Terminator Assault Squad

Blood Angel Techmarine Tactics

Sternguard Veteran Squad Tactics

Sanguinary Priest

Blood Angel Troop Tactics

The Troop choices should be the core of your army.

The Blood Angel Tactical Squads are subject to the 'Red Thirst' Blood Angel special rule, so one in six squads will have extra close combat skills. The thing is that you will not know which squads (or how many) until the game starts. This means that the wise money is on keeping the options open by keeping the tactical squads light and flexible. Opting out of the heavy weapon option and supplying the squads with rhinos ( or other troop carriers ).

Blood Angel Tactical Squad Tactics

The Blood Angel Tactical Squad are very similar to the Codex Space Marine Tactical Squads in composition. This means that if you are moving over from the Codex Space Marines to playing the Blood Angel Space Marines, there will be many similarities that will ease the transition. The down side of this is that your opponents will be able to apply standard anti-Space Marine tactics to your Blood Angels Tactical Squads too.

The Blood Angel Tactical Squads are subject to the 'Red Thirst' Blood Angel special rule, so one in six squads will have extra close combat skills. The thing is that you will not know which squads (or how many) until the game starts. This means that the wise money is on keeping the options open by keeping the tactical squads light and flexible. Opting out of the heavy weapon option and supplying the squads with rhinos ( or other troop carriers ).

Blood Angel Death Company Tactics

The Blood Angel Death Company is a unique unit available to the Blood Angel Space Marines.

You can only have one Death Company in your army, but you can have anywhere from 3 to 30 Death Companies Marines in the squad! As a large squad and with the increased stat's, and the 'Feel no Pain' the Death Company Space Marines can deal out a lot of pain when they are assaulting.

Be careful with the cost of the Blood Angel Death Company squads. The basic cost is 33% higher than the basic Tactical Marine, and you need add transport or Jet Pack costs on top of this to get the best from the squad. For larger Blood Angel Death Company Squads the transport option will not be available as the squad will not be able to fit in. It is advised that this is considered when you are picking you army list and thinking about the tactics you want to use.

Blood Angel Death Company Dreadnought

If you field a squad of Death Company you can field a Blood Angel Death Company Dreadnought. And the larger the Death Company, the more Blood Angel Death Company Dreadnoughts you can field! This means that you could field an army that is virtually completely made of Death Company and Death Company Dreadnoughts.

Blood Angel Scout Squad Tactics

Blood Angel Squads can make good assault troops. The do not have the armour of the Tactical Marine, but they get all the sneaky tactics.

> Also see: Sneaky Tactics

Assault Squad Tactics

Unlike the Codex Space Marine armies in the Blood Angel army the Assault Squad is a troop choice. This means that you could field an army of all jet pack wearing marines.

You do not need to give your Assault Squads jet packs, and not doing so will make the Assault Squads a lot more predictable. The down side of this is that the Assault squad will be more predictable to your opponent as well.

If you loose the jet packs the Assault Squad does not get cheaper, but you do get a discount off a transport

Blood Angel Fast Attack Tactics

The Blood Angel army has a full set of fast attack choices, just as you would expect from an assault specialist army.

Vanguard Veteran Squad Tactics

Land Speeder Squadron Tactics

Blood Angel Baal Predator Tactics

The Blood Angel Baal Predator is a regular Space Marine Predator that has been reconfigured for the Blood Angel army. The specifics are that the turret has been armed with twin-linked Assault Cannons. The sponsons are usually armed with Heavy Bolters too.

Armed like this the Blood Angel Baal Predator is a great close support option to your Space Marines. It can keep up with the troops as they move forward and thin out any swarm units before the tactical and assault squads get in to action.

As the weapons on the Baal Predator are medium ranged, you will need to move the Baal Predator quite close to the action. The Armour on the Baal Predator will fend off most ranged shots, as long as you do not expose the thinner rear armour. But the main cause for concern will be counter assault from enemy troops. Specially any wielding melter weapons. This means that the Baal Predator will work best when supported by assault troops too. As you may see, there is a nice symbiosis at work here.

> Also see: Warhammer 40k Tank Tactics

Attack Bike Squad Tactics

Bike Squad Tactics

Scout Bike Squad Tactics

Blood Angel Heavy Support Tactics

Even assault specialist armies need some heavy support.

Blood Angel Dreadnought Tactics

Blood Angel Stormraven Gunship Tactics

Blood Angel Predator Tactics

Blood Angel Devastator Squad Tactics

The Blood Angel Devastator Squads are good flexible heavy weapon choices, but in the Blood Angel army, with the 'Red Thirst' special rule, the points may best be spent on troop choices and add a tank or two.

Blood Angel Vindicator Tactics

Blood Angel Whirlwind Tactics

The Whirlwind sits at odds with the Blood Angel army. The nature of the Blood angels is that they are an army on the move, and usually that movement is forward. The Whirlwind usually works better sitting on the back lines thinning out the troops of the various horde armies.