Dark Angel Elite Tactics

40k-Space-Marine-Terminator-Cyclone-100In this section we will be looking at the Dark Angel Elite Choices available to the Space Marine Dark Angel army, and their tactics.

The Dark Angel army is one of the most elitist of the Space Marine armies. By this I mean that the Dark Angels are able to use a smaller number of more skilled troops. You do not need to play the Dark Angel army in this way. You can keep to a minimal amount of Elite units and more Tactical Squad troop choices. I would suggest trying both and see which you prefer.

Like most Elite army list option, you do not get many slots available for Elite choices, and they tend to be pricey in points. This means that the more you know about our opposition, the you will be able to tailor this section of the army list.

Dark Angel Deathwing Terminator Squad

Warhammer 40k Dark Angel Deathwing SquadIf you want a stubborn Troop choice then the Dark Angel Deathwing Terminators show how its done! They are fearless, have are Ld9, and they have the Terminator Armour that is the toughest nonetheless armour available! Also as they are members of the inner circle, they have hatred for Chaos Marines.

They do come with a high cost. At 40 points each basic, you could almost get three Dark Angel Tactical Space Marines or three and two thirds Dark Angel Scouts for the points.

Dark Angel Deathwing Terminators Special Rules

The Dark Angel Deathwing Terminators special rules are different from the Codex Terminators.


The Deathwing Terminators have the ‘Deathwing’ special rule that gives them the ‘Fearless’ special rule. No not worry about passing moral checks, they do it automatically! It does not matter how many screaming Orks they face, or if the HQ is on the table or not, these models will fight to the last man.

Because the Deathwing Terminators Fight to the last man means that they are very good at holding up advancing assault squads. This should give you time to counter strike or clear a killing ground if the
Terminators don’t finish the job on their own.

Hatred ( Chaos Space Marines)

The Deathwing Special rule also gives the Deathwing Hatred for Chaos Space Marines.

Deep Strike with Deathwing

The Dark Angel Deathwing Terminators have the option to enter the battle using the ‘Deep Strike’ special rules. This can be combined with the Ravenwing teleport homers to make devastating surgical assaults on key objectives.

The most popular method of getting Deathwing Terminators on to the battlefield is to use the Deep Strike special rule. Deep Strike will allow you to drop your Deathwing units right into the middle of the action. Be careful though because doing this is not without perils!

> Also seen: Warhammer 40k Sneaky Tactics

Mixed Weapons

This is not a special rule pre-say but with Dark Angel Deathwing Terminators there are no distinctions between close combat Space Marine Terminators and tactical Space Marine Terminator squads. You can make any squad one or the other or a mixture of both by choosing the weapons they take. This means that you can have a squad with Assault Cannons, Chain Fists, Lightning Claws and Thunder Hammers. This makes you choices very flexible. As usual keep your opponent in mind when designing your army list. If you are unsure, keep the squad flexible with some close combat weapons and some heavy tank busting weapons.

Deathwing Knights

Warhammer 40000 Space Marine Dark Angel Deathwing Knight

Dark Angel Deathwing Knight in Pre-heresy / Angels of Vengeance colours

Deathwing Knights are a new troop type for the 2013 Dark Angel Codex. Deathwing Knights are a close combat squad of terminators. They have a new close combat weapon ‘ Flail of the Unforgiven ‘, Storm Shields and they have one point better weapon skill, and the Deathwing Knight character, the ‘ Knight Master ‘, gets one extra attack too.

Dark Angel Deathwing Knight Weapons

The Deathwing Knights only have one weapon choice the ‘ Mace Of Absolution ‘. This gives the Deathwing Knights a S6 AP3 close combat mace. This means that normal Space Marines will be wounded on a 2+, with no armour save. However the Deathwing Knights are designed as daemon prince killers. To help them do this they have the Hammer of Wrath, Concussive, and Precision Strikes special rules. This means that you can pick out your target when you roll a 6 to hit, and if you do wound then the target falls to I1 immediately and until the end of the next close combat round.

The Deathwing Knight’s Mace does have the ability for a once per game ‘ Smite Mode ‘ attack. This gives each Deathwing Knight one S8, AP2 close combat attack. This may be worth keeping back for killing a prime objective. This may be a Monstrous Creature, Tank, or a character that you can catch on their own.

The Deathwing Knight character, the ‘ Knight Master ‘, gets a souped up Mace called the ‘ Flail Of The Unforgiven ‘. This hits as normal but wounds on a 2+ regardless of toughness. It is also concussive like the Mace of Absolution. However there’s no smite mode for the Flail so so you will have to leave Tank and Dreadnought tin opening to the regular Knights!

Storm Shield

The Dark Angel Deathwing Knights get Storm Shields as well as the Terminator Armour. This means that the Deathwing’s Knights get a 3+ invulnerable save as well as basic 2+ save. This in turn means that cover will not give you much of an advantage other than blocking the line of sight from any heavy weapons.

The Dark Angel Deathwing Knights have another trick up their sleeves too. This is that if a Knight is in base to base with 2 other Knights they get +1 to their toughness. Remember that they get this bonus from all directions. So if you are stuck out in the open it will give a bit more survivability.

One downside of the ‘ Wall Of Shields ‘ formation is that it makes the Deathwing Knight unit a prime target for blast weapons. If a Demolisher Cannon ( S10, AP2, Large Blast) gets you in it’s sights, then the Deathwing Knights will be needing those 3+ invulnerable saves!

Dark Angel Dreadnought Tactics

Space Marine Dreadnought TacticsThe 2013 Dark Angel codex has brought the points cost of the Dreadnought back in line with the Codex Space Marine Dreadnought, previously this was enough for me to drop the Dreadnoughts from my Dark Angel army lists. Now both the Codex Space Marine Dreadnought and the Dark Angel Dreadnought come with a Multi-Melta as standard. If you wish to upgrade the weapons on the Dreadnought the upgrade points cost are comparable too. As far as I am concerned this has been enough for me to bring the Dreadnoughts back in to the fold as far as my army list go.

Venerable Dreadnoughts

The Dark Angel Venerable is a bargain as far as points go against the Codex Venerable Dreadnought. This works out at 20 points or more cheaper. If you have the points, then this is worth considering.

It is worth noting that now armour points have been introduced with the 6th Edition Warhammer 40k Rulebook, that the value of being able to re-roll damage table rolls has been reduced, not altogether removed.

Tactical uses for Dreadnoughts

Dreadnoughts are very tactical units. By that I mean that they are flexible and can be used as heavy support units from a distance, or as a close combat unit in a fist fight. This means they are great units to step in if something unexpected happens, or if an opportunity opens up.

If Dreadnoughts have a downside, its that they are slow. If you are wanting to move a Dreadnought from one side of the table to the other, you may find that you run out of turns before the Dreadnought gets there. This means that you need to be careful with where you place the Dreadnought when you are setting up, and if possible you need to bring the fight to the Dreadnought. You can do this by placing the Dreadnought near objectives that your opponent needs to capture.

There is a Drop Pod upgrade option for the Dreadnought. The upgrade only costs 35 points and gives the Dreadnought deep strike capabilities. Now deep strike does come with some risk, however the ability to drop in this amount of hardware where you need it is very tempting.

> Also seen: Warhammer 40k Sneaky Tactics

Dark Angel Company Veterans Squad Tactics

Veteran Space Marines are Tactical Space Marines Sergeants that have proved them selves to deserve a promotion. Some Veterans stay with the Tactical Marines as Veteran Sergeants, and some leave the tactical squads to form Company Veteran Squads. One effect of this is that the Company Veteran Squads have the same special rules that the tactical squads have. They are +not+ inner circle members so they do not get the special hatred rules.

What the Company Veteran Squads do get is access to a greater range and number of special weapons, and the whole squad has LD9. This means that the squad will stick around a bit longer than you may otherwise expect.

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