Monday, June 16, 2014
Militarum Tempestus Tactics: Warlord Traits
An important part of playing your tempestus army is in choosing warlord traits. With 7th edition you have some better choices now, and unlike the Astra Militarum book, the Tempestus warlord table is not so good that you should not consider others. With the battle forged bonus being able to reroll, you have a much better chance of getting a useful trait to help you in your battles.
I will not talk about the tactical traits, as that is specific to maelstrom of war missions, if playing those they are useful and should be considered, in balance against the benefits the others bring. First lets go over the ones that are not so useful. Personal traits you really should not roll on, like IG, the scions don't benefit much from it, your strength is in your army, not your warlord, he is not chapter master and as such cannot perform in similar ways. Command traits are not bad, but due to the special rules of the Tempestus Scions, it is not the best. The first trait is rendudant as Scions already have it better, allowing them to use the Primes leadership out to 18" rather than 12, the command trait would allow you to use it for orders, but this really isn't enough. The second forces your opponent to use their lowest leadership if within 12", this is too situational to be useful. The third is useless as your entire army already has move through cover. The 4th allows you to reroll run or charge distance if within 12", agian though Scions are not big on close combat unless they absolutely have to. The last two allow rerolls to hit of 1s in close combat or shooting, if within 12" of warlord. You can order preferred enemy for shooting, which is better. Neither are bad, but again to situational to be truly useful. The issue with the command table is that the Scions already have a lot of the bonuses that they provide, and sometimes better. Even with rerolls, you can be stuck with a useless warlord trait.
On to the more useful. The strategic table is actually quite good and should be definitely considered. The first is half useful, as again you already have move through cover, but stealth in ruins is actually very good, especially with the focus on ruins for terrain. Note this applies to your vehicles as well, giving tauroxes a big bonus in cover. Night attacker is actually quite useful, as it gives you all the benefits but none you your opponent. Your army gets night vision so you can have stealth, but your opponent does not. This is a solid choice to keep when facing an army that does not have a lot of ignore cover like tau or IG. Master of ambush is really great as it allows you to have three non vehicle units of your choice infiltrate, note though that dedicated transports do still get to benefit from this but the squad must be embarked. This is really good, it allows you to infiltrate or outflank scions again. Strategic genius is great as well, giving you rerolls of reserves and a +1 to seize the initiative. Divide and conquer is the flip side and gives your opponent -1 to their reserve rolls. The last allows you to force three of your opponents units to take a pinning check. This is good if situational. Against armies that don't have a lot of fearless units, this is really good. Even against marines this can be good, forcing devastator squads into the dirt for the first turn.
The strategic table is really good, and with reroll you have a good chance of getting a useful one depending on the army you are facing. Generally I would want to keep night attacker, master of ambush, and princeps of deceit, with conqueror of cities and strategic genius being good as well depending on your army.
On the Tempestus table you have some useful traits as well. I am generally not a fan of traits that only affect the warlord as they are not as useful in an army like the scions, you want something that boosts your armies overall effectiveness. Because of this the first too are generally sub par. The first the warlord is fearless, simply put its not that great, compared to others its sub par. While its nice not worrying about your warlord running away, generally its not enough to be worth it. The same goes for grenadier. Woo hoo, he is twin linked when throwing grenades, and has tank hunters while using them in CC. Its not bad, but is generally only going to be useful a few times and too situational to be that great, rarely is that one grenade going to make the difference in the game.
The rest though are not bad. Intrepid leader is great as it gives units within 12" stubborn, this is much better than fearless as it affects much more that his unit. Its good especially if you are facing an assault army, to give you some edge in surviving combat. Grav chute commandos is good as well (its fixed). It allows you to reroll tempestus units reserve rolls if coming from deep strike, and also they only scatter D6 instead of 2 if in the same detachment as your warlord. This is really good especially if you are a fan of deepstriking. Drill chief is a great trait as it gives a 6" bonus to your hotshot lasguns and pistols if they did not move and are within 12" of the warlord. This is a great way to boost your gunline and anchor your army. The last is good as it gives +1 to leadership to your commander, this is great because of clarion vox net which allows you to use his leadership if units are within 18". Giving a bubble of Ld 10 is nothing to laugh at.
These two tables are going to be your main choices and choosing between the two is a hard choice. Personally I am going to try out the strategic traits as I really like their flexibility and how they help the scion army out. That being said there are some gems in the tempestus, with drill chief being one of my favorites. Choose based on how you feel they will benefit your army and on who you are facing, night attacker for example is useless against dark eldar, but very useful against space marines. whether or not you reroll is dependent on the army your are facing. Hope this helps and give you an idea of what to roll on.