Monday, March 13, 2017

Gathering Storm III: Rise of the Primarch Rules

Moving on to the rules section, this book has the least amount of rules, but only slightly.  It has three characters and a few formations and a detachment.  A little less than Fall of Cadia as it had one more detachment.  This book has a little for the fallen and grey knights, but the big detachment is for the Ultramarines and the Primarch.

First up is Cypher.  Nothing for him has really changed from the dataslate, he can't be in any army with dark angels models, and note that is ARMY, not detachment.  So no, you can't have a dark angels detachment and then another different detachment with Cypher in it.  The Fallen & Cypher are battle brothers with the Imperium and Chaos Space Marines.  Allies of Convenience with all Eldar, Necrons, Orks, Renegade Knights, and Ynnari.  Desperate allies with Tau and Come the Apoc with genestealer, tyranids, Chaos Daemons, Khorne Daemonkin.  They don't like daemons but got no problem with Chaos Marines.

Cypher himself is 190pts, has his special pistols with a 16" bolt pistol and a plasma pistol that does not get hot.  Blazing weapons allows him to fire each twice, or to run and shoot them once.  He also uses them in CC, with half the attacks rounding up being the bolt pistol.  Note it is just the S and AP profile he uses in CC so still uses WS for these attacks.  He has frag and Krak grenades and has shrouded, eternal warrior, And they shall know no fear, fleet, hit and run, IC, infiltrate.  His other unique special rules are As ye show, so shall ye reap, which means he can never be your warlord and your warlord suffers a -1 penalty to their leadership.  Divine protection which means that if there is an enemy model within D6" of him when he is removed as a casualty, then he dies.  If not then he escapes and does not reward victory pts.  There is further rules to this when the opponent has Dark angels, which boil down to if a Dark angel model captures him the player with dark angels gets 3 victory points, if he dies and the model is not dark angel, no victory pts are assigned, and if cypher lives and is not forced to escape or captured, the owning player gets D3.  This is more for fluffy games.

His stat line is WS7 BS 10 S 4 T 4 W3 I 8 A3 Ld 10 and a 3+ save.  He is alright in my opinion, he is just shy of 200pts and though he has eternal warrior, he has no invul save.   He will be tough to dig out of cover, but there is a good amount of ignores cover to put to use against him.  That and the negative leadership modifier to your warlord puts him off for me.  But with the right unit, he can use hit and run to sling shot around to targets.  He could definitely see use in the formation though.

The fallen are space marines veterans with 2 attacks base and having Ld 10, with the base 5 man squad costing 100pts.  They all do have boltguns, bolt pistols and CCW, so they can shoot and charge with their pistols.  They can take a single heavy weapon, and up to 5 special weapons(if no heavy weapon is taken) or up to 4 power weapons, and then a 5th for the champion.  The heavy weapons I don't being to useful.  This squad will be better kitted out for close combat or with combi-weapons or special weapons.  Where it really stands a chance of being used is the Fallen Champions formation which is Cypher and 1-3 Fallen squads.  They all get infiltrate and any of the fallen squads within 12" of Cypher have stubborn and ATSKNF.  A full squad kitted out with melta guns or assault weapons, infiltrate into some good cover for the shrouding cypher offers and with Ld 10 and ATSKNF and this is a hard unit to move.  This could actually be good for armies that lack powerful infiltrating units, as your opponent will need to dedicate so significant fire to remove.  Granted this will cost you near 500pts once all is said and done with upgrades, but I can see this actually being used.

The grey knights get Grand Master Voldus, who is 240pts.  He has terminator armor and an iron halo for a 2+ 4++, and usual grey knights wargear.  His hammer is pretty nice in that it has all the characteristics of a daemon hammer, but is not unweildy, so he has a S8 AP2 weapon striking at I 5.  Not bad at all.  Otherwise he is WS 6 BS 5 has 5 Wds and 4 A.  He has the Aegis, Purity of Spirit, ATSKNF, IC, Preferred enemy daemons, and Psyker Mastery level 3.  In addition he can can generate 4 psychic powers, but 1 must be from Sanctic.  He can generate from Sanctic, Divination, Fulmination, Geokinesis, Librarius, Pyromancy, Technomancy, Telekinesis, and Telepathy.  He is a bit spendy but is pretty darn good, with 4 powers and a S8 AP2 weapon that strikes at his initiative.  Like the other books, he can be taken as an HQ choice for any armies of the imperium.  So if you are looking for psychic beat stick and need help against daemons, he is not a bad choice.

The bulwark of purity is the grey knight formation, which is 1 Librarian, 2 Paladin Squads, and 2 Terminator Squads.  The librarian must be a Grey Knight and must have terminator armor, and no unit in the formation can take a transport.  Their special rules are bulwark formation, while you have 3 or more units of this formation on the battlefield, you add 1 to your deny the witch tests.  Aura of Purity, while 3 or more of these units are on the battlefield, if any unit in this formation casts banishment, all units with the daemon special rule are affected if within 12" of any of the units from this formation.  Its not a bad formation and is really meant to take on daemons, so probably won't be seeing a ton of use.  There is some special  rules for daemonic adversaries when playing against grey knights, but its mostly just for fluff games as both players have to agree to use it.

Now the big boy himself Roboute Guiliman.  He is a Lord of War, and 350pts.  His stats are WS9 and then 6s across the board and Ld10.  His armor of Fate is a 2+ 3++ and if he dies, you place a marker and on a 4+ he returns with D3 wds left.  He is pretty tough to kill.  He has the hand of dominion and sword of the emperor, which are used as one weapon in close combat so no extra attack there.  It is S10 AP 1 with Armorbane, Concussive, Soul Blaze, Touch of the Emperor, and Whirling flame.  Touch of the emperor, on a hit roll of 6 that attack is resolved as S D.  Whirling flame allows him to make attacks against all units within 1" of him, with the number of attacks being the number of models within 1" of him.  I don't see this happening too much, as it will be hard to have more than 6 models within 1" of him, though some horde armies may occasionally get this.

He is Lord commander of the Imperium and as such all friendly units from the Armies of the Imperium reroll all failed morale, fear, and pinning checks while he is on the battlefield, no minimum distance.  Primarch of the XIII legion allows you to enact the Tactical, Devastator, and Assault doctrines once per game, but all ultramarine models are affected by each doctrine. Unyielding will,  His leadership is not subject to any negative modifiers of any kind, so this is the one case where Cypher wouldn't hurt.  For his warlord trait, he knows all six command traits from the base rule book (BRB).  All in all, he is a great force multiplier, and I actually see more use for him outside of space marine armies with his leadership bonus and all the command trait modifiers that he has.

The Triumvirate is all three new characters and each model can reroll one saving throw once per turn, and while Guilliman and Voldus are on the battlefield, all units of the Imperium have the stubborn special rule.  The only real problem is that you won't have too many units due to the total cost of this formation.  The Victrix Guard though is definitely intriguing and might make some appearances with Guilliman due to their buffs.  It is Captain Sicarius, 1 unit of Honor Guard, and 4 units of Sternguard or Vanguard in any combination.  They get fight like demigods, giving them all +1 to their WS and BS, and the Primarchs Chosen, which allows any unit within 3" of the Primarch to Look out Sir.  While not a cheap formation, with the min size being 5 man units, you can put this and primarch in and it gives the Primarch a lot of ablative wounds to get up the field.  Keeping to form though, no unit can take a transport, but really you don't want to with this formation, they have be dismounted and near the Primarch to really make use of the formation benefits.  This will be seen for sure.

Next we have a warlord trait table and relics for Ultramarines.  For the warlord table, 1 is Noble Visage: Reroll failed morale, fear and pinning when within 12" of the warlord and the units are Imperium.  2 Warden of Ultramar: Warlord has counter-attack.  3 Paragon of War: Warlord has preferred enemy.  4 Master of Strategy: add 4 to your seize the initiative roll (thats a 2+ seize).   5 Master of Tactics: You can discard a tactical objective card at the beginning of your turn and draw a new one if your warlord is alive (reroll if not using tactical objectives).  6 Adept of the Codex: warlord and friendly units within 6" of him have split fire.  All really good traits.

For relics you have the Tarentian Cloak at 35pts and gives the bearer Eternal Warrior and It Will Not Die.  Helm of Censure at 30pts and gives preferred enemy, but against Chaos Space Marines gives rerolls to all to hit and to wound rolls.  Sanctic Halo is 15pts, captain only, and the bearer has Ad Will and Feel no Pain.  Soldiers Blade is 20pts is essentially an AP2 power sword.  The Standard of Macragge Inviolate is 60pts and friendly Ultramarines units within 12" have +1 leadership, the bearer and his unit have +1 attack while the bearer is alive, finally when a friendly ultramarines model is killed within 6" of the bearer, roll a 5+, that model can make an out of sequence shooting attack if it is the movement, psychic or shooting phase, or pile in and make its attacks if it is in the fight sub-phase.  The Vengeance of Ultramar is 20pts and is a ranged weapon with 24" S1 AP5 Assault 4, poisoned 2+.

For the relics, most are ok.  The banner has potential, if a large unit within its range dies, you have potential for a decent revenge attack, but it is expensive and short ranged.  The sword is solid for an ap2 weapon that strikes at initiative and the Vengeance is good for what is essentially a 4 shot poisoned storm bolter.  The cloak is reasonable to grant your warlord eternal warrior, that will see some use as well.

The last part of this is the Ultramarines detachment, the Victrix Strike force.  It must include a Core choice and 1 Auxiliary choice, can include 3 command choices and for every core choice 1-10 Aux choices.  So if you take 2 core, you must take 2 Aux.  Its command benefits are Perfect Doctrine, you can enact Tactical, Devastator, and Assault doctrines once per game each, in addition you can enact any combination of these in the same turn.  Each doctrine affects all ultramarines models in your army.  All non vehicle models in this detachment also have objective secured and the last benefit is Son of Ultramar, which allows you to reroll your warlord trait on the ultramarines table if this is your primary detachment.

The Core choices for the detachment are the Battle Demi-company and Strike Force Ultra.  Strike force command is one of the command choices and it is one of the following: Roboute Guilliman, Calgar, Captain, Chaplain, 0-1 Honor Guard, 0-1 Command Squad.  The other Command Choices are the Reclusiam Command Squad and the Librarius Conclave.  The Auxiliary choices are the Victrix Guard, Armored Task Force, 1st Company Task Force, Anti-Air Defense Force, 10th Company Task Force, Storm Wing, Suppression Force, Land Raider Spearhead, and Centurion Siegebreaker Cohort.

I can see this detachment being used for Ultra players.  It has a lot of options and can include the Primarch and the Victrix formation, plus the other things to fill it out as desired.  The Doctrines and having Obsec is really good for this detachment and I would expect this to be seen quite a bit, even absent Guilliman.

For me though, I don't think I will be taking the big G.  He costs quite a bit, though he does provide a big amount of benefits, lessening the need for priests or commissars in an imperial guard army.  And I really like the strategic traits, so I won't be benefiting from the command traits from the big G or I'm not getting strategic if I make him the warlord.  I actually quite like grand master Voldus.  He has a good save and invul and having the AP2 weapon strike at initiative is great.  Plus the large access to psychic powers.  I can see him in a 3 man unit of Ogryns in a chimera, moving them about to put out fires.  Depending on the powers rolled, you can go for telepathy for some added survivability and you can use him to tank wounds.  Not the most points efficient unit, but used right they can beat a lot of targets to death.

Overall, some good things in here and plenty of options to think about, though in the end I think Guilliman is bit too much pts for me, and Voldus probably as well.  Time will tell.

Cadia Stands!


  1. What are you thoughts on using Cypher in a blob guard army? Giving a 50man blob ATSKNF, shrouded, hit and run, and other special rules seems pretty useful.

    1. Eh. Priest give you fearless. Commissars pretty much the same, though you'll lose a guy each time the test is failed. There are other ways to get shrouded, coteaz is 100pts and can roll on telepathy. Hit an run is not bad, but the blob is not going to be going anywhere quickly either due to its size. Its certainly doable and not the worst thing, but it does hurt the Ld of your commander, potentially risking him running off the board. The only thing he can grant the squad is Shrouded, ATSKNF, and Hit and Run, as the other rules require the whole unit to have it in order to be used, like fleet and infiltrate, so essentially Cypher loses fleet and infiltrate if you put him with the blob. Also for hit and run, the 3D6 result has to be enough for the entire unit to be able to exit combat and be at least 1" away from enemy models, not as easy as it sounds with a large blob.

      In theory its not bad, in practice it will be hard to pull off, and there are other choices that get you most of the way there for a lot less pts.

    2. When the dataslate for Cypher came out I bought one of the old metal Cypher models with the purpose of using him with my Guard. But he is a lot of points and I have never used him.

      I really like the idea of him, but like you say, there are cheaper ways to do the same thing. But it is just so tempting to get that 2+ cover save for a blob squad when the behind a Pipeline or Aegis wall.

      On the other hand I bought Coteaz as well and have used him multiple times

  2. On other matters, I'm glad you're back blogging after you long absence. What I like about your blog is that it is Guard specific.

    I have a game coming up and am trying out a Psykana division for the first time. Are you able to have a look over my list and give me your thoughts? I made a reddit post about it.

    1. I'm glad to be back. I took a look and I think you are on the right track. I saw some of the recommendations, don't fully agree with everything he said, but here are mine. Drop the heavy bolter sponsons from pask, but keep the exterminator, Autocannons are great all rounders and even with rending, the punisher is not going to be able to really take down heavy vehicles, so they both can shoot the same targets no problem. Battle tank can at best take one hull point off, with 4 autoshots, the exterminator can do more hullpoint damage than a russ.

      Rest of the tanks look fine, maybe swap the last standard russ for another eradicator or exterminator, but not necessary. For the priest, two servitors is prob all you need, 3+ to repair is pretty reliable, and its the most points efficient.

      I agree, drop each of the wyrdvanes to 5 each, and see if your opponent is ok with standing in the pistols for boltguns for the commissars.

      For the platoon, keeping the boltgun is fine if you have that spare point, and I would keep the grenade launchers or go with flamers. Don't bother with the vox, the detachment benefits let you roll 3D6 for all orders and discard the highest, that is pretty darn reliable for orders, plus the platoon commander doesn't have amazing orders.

      I would not bother with the heavy weapons squad, they are very is to double, three S6+ shots will see them disappear. I would drop the melta bombs, go for a second autocannon in the second squad and try and squeeze in krak grenades. I disagree with the guy, you'd be surprised how many situations you might need that, and the grenades give you far more chances to wd MCs and vehicles.

      The only Drastic change you might consider is dropping Pask and the tank command as your HQ and go with a CCS, its cheaper, and the cost of the tank commander and pask upgrade covers the CCS alone, so you could add those tanks back to your armored company if you play the pts right. That gives you some ignores cover and other orders for your infantry squads. Its something to consider in the long run, but I'd make the minor changes first and play with that for a bit before dropping pask.

    2. Thanks for that. I think I'll stick with Pask, but the rest of your recommendations make sense. This game is still over a week away so I have heaps of time to play around with it.

      I don't really make one list and refine it. I have a lot of models and don't play very often, and so I like to make a completely new list every game. Usually going for something completely different from the previous game.

      I have just finished assembling 3 Taurox's so the game following this one I am planning to run 3 of the Militarum Tempestus start collecting formations with the respawining stormtrooper squad. That should be interesting as I have fond memories of using Chenkov with the respawning conscripts. But that is all further down the track, and I am a slow painter so these three Taurox's are going to take a while to get ready.

    3. No worries. And if you like the respawning squads, you should try running scions in the Castellans Detachment, its been quite fun to have them come back and deep strike in on your turn.

  3. This sounds cool! I wonder how they will be like on the tabletop. Theoryhammering is one thing, but it'll be another to see them actually in play! I remember on Twitch, Warhammer TV, Roboute Guilliman actually stomped on Skarband by rolling a 6 in close combat. That was awesome.

  4. What kind of list do you think Guilliman would work best in? I've been toying around with lists that are infantry heavy with plasma and autocannons to spam S7 shooting.

    1. He'll be good with an infantry heavy list because of his army wide leadership buffs, but also with vehicles as most of the command traits work with vehicles as well.