Guest Editorial by Kevin: Tyranids Are Good!

WIP Bugs

Hello, fellow Earth creatures. Kevin from the Daemon Blog here to editorialize at you.

As always, check out the Tactics Corner for more articles and videos!

Now, over at the Daemon blog we mostly talk about Daemons and Chaos Space Marines (which don’t suck, btw), but with all the fuss over Nids, I thought I’d step out of my lane for a bit. And since the book is brand new, we’re all on equal footing when it comes to understanding how it ought to function at this point. I’ve been looking through it to see what all the weeping and gnashing of teeth is about. You can’t really get a sense of a book from reviews others write up.

My sense of the book is that people are probably kvetching about it because they’re used to playing it a certain way, and it doesn’t work anymore. Heretofore, the book was Tervigons, Gants, Tyrants or Swarmlord, Gargoyles, the Doom, and some seasoning.

Dat don’t work no more, but everybody is still stuck in the old paradigm. I admit that Tyranids are not my department, but TEH NEW BOOK SUX syndrome isn’t new. This happened with Daemons at first when we all thought the book was terrible, including me. Then the day after the book came out I figured out I could drop my entire army in the enemy’s face in one turn and I decided things would work fairly well.

After a few months, we had things figured out. Remember balking at paying 350 points for a Daemon Prince? Now we don’t bat an eye. Everybody thought Fateweaver sucked at first, too. Can you imagine a competitive list without him now? We figured it out. So too shall the Nid players.

The numero uno thing about the book is maintaining synapse else your whole army gets shpilkiss in its gnechtgazoink in a hurry. So you had best make your synapse creatures numerous or tough to kill, or both. To this end you have most of the HQ section, most notably Tyrants, Warriors and Tervigons in Troops, Zoanthropes in Elites, Shrikes in Fast Attack, and Trygon Primes in Heavy Support.

What immediately jumps out at me is that a single Hive Tyrant with a Norn crown, protected by three Tyrant Guard and flanked by a Venomthrope has a 24″ synapse range so long as they get Dominion off successfully, and is not easily removed by anything. With adrenal glands, the unit is fleet and has furious charge, so it can keep up with an army and make it behave, while being able to threaten a wide variety of targets. Is such a configuration too much to pay?

Are you sure?

How’s that Flyrant with dual devourers and brain leech worms you’re still running planning to stay alive darting around all by its lonesome with nothing but T6 and a 3+ to protect it? Any flying circus player can tell you that shit don’t work. If you want to run one of those, how about you join him to the Tyrant Guard for a little bit until it’s safe to take off and start picking things off? Why isn’t anyone thinking about Tyrant Guard? They sucked two weeks ago, probably.

Tyranid Warriors are terribad, right? S8 kills them instantly and it only has a 4+ armor save. What garbage! What edition is this? Long Fang spam died over a year ago. Now it’s S6 and S7 everywhere. Everywhere!!!

I see a fearless unit that gets you both scoring synapse for 90 points and is only ten points per wound for a good stat line. So it has T4 and 4+ armor? There’s this thing called a Venomthrope that can give them 3+ cover so long as they’re behind a friendly model or in area terrain. Now all you need to worry about is blastmasters, and even those are likely to take out only one model per shot. One Warrior can take a barbed strangler, which gives it a 36″ large blast that causes pinning, which is just the thing to both babysit those Biovores and keep Tau Pathfinders from stripping away too many cover saves.

I think people are going to find the Venomthrope almost as must-take as synapse creatures. They allow the army to advance quickly and weather casualties. They must be protected from serpent shields, so hiding them behind something large like a Tervigon, Haruspex or Exocrine would be wise if there’s no terrain to hide behind.

Things that used to be considered good, probably aren’t so good anymore. Hive Guard went to BS3 with their S8, 24″guns. Three cost you 165 points. We’re in Forgefiend territory here. It does not strike me as wise to pay that much for three S8 hits per turn at 24″, ignores cover or no. Nids are the melee swarm army. Consider using only as much shooting as necessary to help your army get across the board.

I think the biggest problem folks are having with Nids is that everybody is so damn sure that you need Eldau levels of shooting to even have a prayer in this game, and Nids are quite possibly the worst shooting army in the game. Daemons have even less shooting, but what shooting they can bring is usually pretty effective. Tyranid shooting is almost universally low BS, low AP, short range and low rate of fire. It’s a token amount of shooting designed to soften things up a wee bit as the army crushes forward. The army should be built around closing in for assault.

Admittedly, I don’t play the army, but I sure wish I did considering all the whining. What if you Nid players tried a little something like this?

Hive Tyrant, Norn Crown, adrenal glands (24″ synapse and fleet)

Hive Tyrant, wings, two TL devourers w/ brainleech worms, adrenal glands (a speedy problem solver)

3 Tyrant Guard, adrenal glands (Keeps your Nornrant alive and your army functioning.)

30 Termagants, adrenal glands (Fleet and furious charge so they can take out vehicles and makes your Tervigon scoring.)

29 Hormagaunts (Super fleet and scoring.)

Tervigon, adrenal glands (You need a Tervigon.)

3 Warriors, Barbed Strangler (Not sold on this, but scoring and synapse are good things. They shoot a pinning weapon that might buy you one less unit worth of shooting.)


Venomthrope (Hides behind the Tervigon and hands out shrouded for 3+ cover with all those gants in front.)

28 Gargoyles, adrenal glands (Furious charge to kill vehicles if they’re meched up, fleet, jumpy and blindy. The perfect early tie up unit to buy you more time to advance.)

3 Biovores (Soften ’em up. Kill Pathfinders who would negate your cover save.)


Aegis defense line (Make that 2+ cover for the whole army.)



It probably needs tweaking, but it’s a start. I might feel better with a fourth Tyrant guard and a third Venomthrope, but it will be a long time before I ever have a Nid army, and by then, people will probably have it figured out.

Now, look at what this gets you. You place the Aegis along the board center. You place the Venomthropes out of sight and advance them behind the Tervigon, who screens them, and deploy your army such that everything is either out of sight, or has 2+ cover from the Venomthropes and the Aegis. Remember, only one model needs to have Shrouded for it to affect the entire unit, then use your imagination. You place the objectives on your opponent’s side of the board, but not in their deployment zone.

The Warriors and the Biovores provide just enough firepower to soften up Tau, Daemons, Orks and IG on foot. They are the midfield support that gets left behind and shores up the rear synapse.

Everything advances together, stretching out to keep shrouded from the Venomthropes, who advance behind the Tervigon. the Venomthropes will either be dead, or left in the dust by turn 3 at the very latest. Once that happens, the survivors can hang with the Warriors and the Biovores, plus whatever Gants the Tervigon farts out on its way across the board.

The rest of the army is fleet and numerous. Your opponent has two turns of shooting tops to stop you. The Gargoyles will no doubt make it before that (remember to daisy chain them to within 6″ of a Venomthrope), and on the first turn or two, your army has 2+ cover.

Flying armies do not bother you, because you can clog the board for flyers, and force FMC’s to land and get tied up by fearless mobs for the entire game. Bikeseer Councils do not bother you because they can’t hit and run far enough away to break combat with all the models you have on the board. You can tie them up for the entire game for all intents and purposes. Bike armies don’t bother you because they have nowhere to run, and not enough dakka. You don’t care about Mechdar because it doesn’t have enough shots to kill the swarms bearing down on it. Maybe the O’vesa star bothers you, but you can probably reach that quickly enough.

Can any other army start the game fearless and entirely in 2+ cover while rushing the other side?

The sooner the Nid players shed the paradigms they’re under, the sooner they’ll start figuring this stuff out. There’s a lot of neat stuff that deep strikes in the book, too, and I hear tell the Swarmlord bumps up your reserve rolls by one so it can all arrive at the same time for a very mean alpha strike. There’s probably a list or two there as well. I do not buy for a second that the book is weak, or rushed.


About Reecius

The fearless leader of the intrepid group of gamers gone retailers at Frontline Gaming!

86 Responses to “Guest Editorial by Kevin: Tyranids Are Good!”

  1. Pascal Roggen January 20, 2014 2:28 am

    sounds fun, also using fortifications can be really sweet for thropes, just the 55 point bunker to stop them getting smart missled to death and granting some LOS blocking terrain and heck… by the barricades upgrade for it and taddaa nigh unkillable shrouding stuff.
    There is a lot of Fortification shenanigans look out for it NIds finally make them work again, yaaay.
    lovely article

  2. Chalkybot January 20, 2014 5:13 am

    I’m not sold on dual Flyrants either, I think a prime with norn crown in a unit of 30 Gaunts could do a pretty decent job of a central synapse anchor? Cheap (ish) and scoring

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 10:01 am

      Prime+Norn Crown is good, but disgustingly over-priced! Gah, I almost can’t bring myself to use him on principle’s sake alone!

      • Arclight January 21, 2014 4:02 pm

        Prime w/Norn Crown is more than twice the price of a naked Prime in the previous codex, for the massive benefit of… oh yeah, +6″ to Synapse range.

        Like you say, it just feels wrong to be paying so much more for a unit that is actually marginally worse (if slightly more flexible) when you take their options into account, regardless of how useful they might be.

        Tervigons, everyone was expecting, but the Prime was never a stand out unit in the first place. *sigh* I don’t know how obvious it is, but I do miss a 100 pt Prime w/Boneswords and Toxin…

        Anyways, sorry for the tangent 🙂

        • Reecius
          Reecius January 21, 2014 7:04 pm

          I feel you dude, it is so lame that they jacked his cost up for no apparent reason =(

  3. Zarryiosiad January 20, 2014 5:21 am

    The more I read the Tyranid codex, the more convinced I am that there is a way to make them viable, and your article aligns almost perfectly with what I feel are the core components of Tyranid strengths, though I would make some changes.

    An ideal army should be split into two parts: the REMFs and the Hard Chargers. The REMFs (Rear-Echelon Mother F***ers for you non-military types) are your backfield objective holders and last-ditch synapse. They hold the line in case things start falling back. This is where the Norn Crown should go–not on the Hive Tyrants leading the charge, but on a lowly Tervigon sitting in the heaviest cover she can find, backed up by a Venomthrope. If you can put the Venomthrope in the corner of a ruin where barrage weapons can’t hit it, but within 6″ of the Tervigon, that would be perfect. Just make sure it’s out of sight. With the Norn Crown and the default power Catalyst, the Tervigon creates a bubble 51″ across (24″ in all directions + 3″ for the base) which covers almost the entire table. Then only other units you should have with the Tervigon and the Venomthrope are your heavy support. I’m partial to Biovores, but to each his own. Try to keep them within 6″ of the venomthrope as well, to get that wonderful +2 to your cover save.

    The Hard Chargers are everything else in your army. Place an Aegis Defense Line 12″ forward (or more, if you’re feeling frisky!) and in your first turn, take cover behind it with everything you have, making sure to keep the second Venomthrope shielded from fire. From there, every game will be different, but it’s a great way to keep the army safe for at least a turn. I know most people think a Flyrant is necessary, but I’m not a fan of them for the exact reasons you mention. Why sacrifice such an important unit like that? In almost every battle report I’ve seen recently, the Flyrant gets knocked out of the sky after doing practically no damage, then dies horribly. Better to walk, shielded by the Tyrant guard.

    Here’s the list I’d recommend at 1750 Points:

    Hive Tyrant w/2 Twin-Linked Devourers and Adrenal Glands—210
    3 Tyrant Guard + Adrenal Glands—165
    Hive Tyrant w/2 Twin-Linked Devourers and Wings + Regeneration—260

    Tervigon w/Norn Crown –235
    30 Termagants + Adrenal Glands—180
    5 Tyranid Warriors w/ Rending Claws and Adrenal Glands—200
    5 Tyranid Warriors w/ Rending Claws and Adrenal Glands—200


    Heavy Support
    2 Biovores—80
    2 Biovores—80

    Aegis Defense Line—50

    If you don’t think you need a flyrant, by all means, swap him out with another Tyrant. But if you do keep him, I’d definitely recommend taking Regeneration. If he gets into trouble, you can fly him out of range or off the board, and let Regen kick in to mitigate the damage.

    Anyway, thanks for the great article. It’s nice to see sanity returning to the Tyranid community after the initial “WTF” moment!

    • Kevin January 20, 2014 7:24 am

      Exactly. Flyrants are sitting ducks on their own, but every netlist I read still features them. They’re pretty much Bloodthirsters, which are not a competitive Daemon Choice because they die. Tyrants cost a bunch and die fast so you lose your synapse. Buy three Tyrant Guard and suddenly you have 11 wounds. Protect with Venomthropes and an Aegis and suddenly they’re as tough to kill at range as a couple Riptides, provided you’re careful enough to keep your Venomthropes alive for two turns. Two turns of cover is all you should need.

    • Zarryiosiad January 20, 2014 8:56 am

      Flyrants do have a use: anti-air. He’s short-ranged, but 12 twin-linked shots at Strength 6 is decent against enemy flyers. Unfortunately, you still have the problem of being only Toughness 6 with a 3+ save. It’s really pathetic, and that’s why you see flyrants getting swatted like flies in battle report after battle report. Better to walk with a couple of Tyrant Guard for extra wounds.

      Another thing I’ve been considering is taking a maxed out unit of Spore Pod Clusters (or two!) as Fast Attack choices. For 30 points, you get a Strength 10, AP4 large blast that ignores cover. Great for taking out entrenched troops or vehicles.

      Don’t mind the naysayers. Those of us who aren’t sitting in front of our computers, composing hate poems about Robin Cruddace in iambic pentameter, while cutting ourselves with our hobby knives and moaning about how pathetic our codex is, will just have to muddle on without them.

      We’ll figure it out. The most worthwhile battles are always fought uphill.

    • hippesthippo January 20, 2014 6:03 pm

      Not sure what you need that Norn Crown and Tyrant+Guard Combo when only three units in your army lack Synapse themselves.. Seems like overkill.

      Warriors are still terribad, bro. Get over them.

      • Reecius
        Reecius January 20, 2014 6:08 pm

        Warriors are so bad. People keep trying to make them work, and once in a while they will, but in general they are easily one of the shittiest troops in the game, perhaps only surpassed in suck bu CSMs.

    • Arclight January 21, 2014 4:05 pm

      It’d really be worth considering finding the 30 pts for Toxin on the Warriors in that list. I like the idea of it though 🙂

  4. bigpig January 20, 2014 5:44 am

    Oh, I see. Nid players can only see one way of playing and just need to open their minds up to realize all the good that is out there?

    “I admit that Tyranids are not my department”

    “Admittedly I don’t play the army”

    ….but I’m going to give you my armchair advice anyway, not tested in combat, because you nid players are obviously too locked into your monolist paradigm to see what I can see. Advice from those who don’t play an army on how to play an army, especially when seasoned with just a taste of condescension, is easy to view for what it is. No disrespect meant. I simply encourage you to put the models on the board and see how they do, against good opponents who will try and pop those venomthropes first, use ignore cover weapons, point out that actually have to be 25% obscured from los of the firing unit to claim cover from that ADL you are 6 to 10 inches behind, blow up the Tervigon near gaunts, target synapse weaknesses, etc. before telling Tyranid players to break free of their chains.

    Or go here;

    And see what is being worked on, playtested, and brainstormed

    Trust me, we’ve been looking for options and what you suggest here is no great epiphany. Nid players played one way in the last codex because it was the only viable competitive list. The hope was really that known problems and poorly written rule interactions would be corrected; they weren’t. Also that there would be multiple viable builds for serious play; its shaping out to be monobuild, but just with some different units. Nid players don’t want a one trick pony Grimoire combo. They wanted, and didn’t get, a balanced codex. That is rushed and disappointing.

    • Conflagration January 20, 2014 7:29 am

      Thank you Bigpig thank you. Non tyranid players see gold in the nid codex but don’t realize it’s just “Fools” gold they got in there hand. This also applies to hardcore nid players that are in denial. Overall nids will have some decent matchups but the rest of the matches they will fall on there face because all I’m seeing is they depend on cover and venomthropes for most of there saves and tactics. And the top Andorra played army’s have lots of answers for cover.

    • Fagerlund January 20, 2014 7:45 am

      And even here you cry about what you want but didn’t get. Is it any wonder that it doesn’t look like Tyranid-players are even trying to make the book work when all we see is “we wanted this and that!”? Especially when someone writes down ideas and it’s met by “but that wouldn’t work, because in theory this and this happens, besides you don’t play Tyranids so you know nothing”? This is not specific to your answer in this comment by the way, this is what I’ve seen on every 40k-messageboard/blog/youtube channel I visit.

      Good link though, the attitude seems to be better there at least.

      • Reecius
        Reecius January 20, 2014 9:51 am

        Alright fellas, we encourage spirited debate but show one another respect, that’s the only rule here.

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 9:54 am

      Alright fellas, we encourage spirited debate but show one another respect, that’s the only rule here.

  5. Kevin January 20, 2014 7:16 am

    I meant no disrespect either. I wrote this almost a week ago and asked Reece his opinion. He liked it and asked to post it. The point of the article is that the skilled Tyranid players are going to figure out the codex, and it isn’t as awful as everyone says.

    And I have every intention of testing this. Tonight if possible.

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 9:58 am

      Hey Kevin, I’ve got your back, dude. I love posting articles that are contrary to my own point of view because I think it makes FLG a more well rounded and fair site. Defend your ideas and take the criticism with a grain of salt, this is an article that is going to provoke a strong response from Nid players, who feel cheated (and fairly, IMO).

      Feel free to back up your statements with Bat Reps (videos or written) and we will post them! But, as I am sure you knew when you wrote this, you will get push-back. As long as everyone is respectful, this will be a good debate.

      • Kevin January 20, 2014 10:11 am

        Haha! I already took a bunch of shit when it went up on my own blog. The book has been out two weeks. Give it a few months.

        • Reecius
          Reecius January 20, 2014 10:19 am

          You had to see that coming! Haha, I knew this would generate some controversy right away. I am just curious to see if you can back some of this theory up! I hope you can, but so far I have been MASSIVELY disappointed with this book. I actually get physically angry when I read it! haha

          I’d be curious to hear more of your thoughts on CSM too, as I tried for months and months to write a list I could stand to play out of that book and eventually gave up on it. CSM to me is a book with a few good units but in general is bad comedy.

          • Kevin January 20, 2014 10:55 am

            Well if you’d un-ban Be’lakor it would be easier! But I’m showing up to LVO with CSM primary/Daemon allies, so we’ll see how that goes!

          • Reecius
            Reecius January 20, 2014 11:32 am

            Hey, “I” didn’t ban jack shit! Haha, we took a vote and the community voted it down, then FLG staff decided to go with popular opinion, big difference =P I am just the spokesman for our company, I am not the final arbiter on all things we do.

            I like Be’Lakor, but one model does not a good codex make. CSM has 1-2 good builds, but (as I have said so often) is another book that massively disappoints me. They just missed the mark on what could have been the coolest book in 40K =(

    • TheWarRoom January 20, 2014 12:17 pm

      Thanks for the article, Kevin.

      I do disagree with quite a bit of what you said. The main problem is that most of us long time Tyranid players were hoping for a codex that you could take almost every selection and be happy with their play on the table – this codex does not do that. People seem to call that “nerd rage” (or whatever is cool in the internet trolling community these days).

      When you look at the Eldar Codex, you have lots of great choices and really only one that was made without much thought (Howling Banshees). With the Tyranid codex we have a lot of Howling Banshee selections.

      Moving on.

      Getting an outside opinion can be extremely valuable to help in looking in a different direction. I’ve heard lots of talk about the deadness of the Swarmlord, but he’s not that much more expensive than a similar walking hive tyrant (about 70 points) but he gives you an extra psychic power, a pseudo-psychic power, a decent warlord trait and a better chance at reserve rolls. Maybe he can work?

      I will say that it is not some sort of inability to see beyond the last codex (why do these “buzz” comments just keep getting repeated all the time), but an objective analysis of the units. The flying Hive Tyrant is still one of the best units in the codex. Termagants are still our best troop choice. Despite the nerfs, a Tervigon is still a MC with 6 wounds holding an objective. None of that has anything to do with the prior edition.

      You are correct about one thing, we basically need to take venomthropes and a fortification (be it a defense line, bastion or a Firestorm Redoubt) to be competitive. Getting at least one or two turns of 2+ cover saves (even in a meta of ignore cover, not every weapon does). From there, the name of the game is target saturation.

  6. Tomguycot January 20, 2014 8:07 am

    Stopped reading when you said that the CSM Codex was also good.

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 9:52 am

      Alright fellas, we encourage spirited debate but show one another respect, that’s the only rule here.

      • Tomguycot January 20, 2014 2:05 pm

        Fair enough, I just don’t understand the mindset that tries to rationalize or justify what is just shoddy work on GW’s part (both the Tyranid book and Chaos marine book). It isn’t “ok” and GW shouldn’t just get a pass on it. Stuff like this codex is unacceptable and we as consumers shouldn’t just accept it. People should vote with their wallets. Otherwise what incentive does GW have to step up their game?

        • Reecius
          Reecius January 20, 2014 6:06 pm

          I agree 100%, this codex is a pile of shit. Good lists will emerge and good players will win with it but from an overall perspective, it would be hard to be more disappointed with this thing. My only point is that someone’s trying to be positive, and that’s cool. We can disagree (I disagree with some of the analysis here) but we can be civil to one another while doing it, you know? That’s how I see it, anyway.

  7. ACBrown January 20, 2014 9:04 am

    What I’m hoping is that all the people who keep saying that the new Tyranid Codex is good will bring Nids to Adepticon in April… so I can easily make top 16.

    Seriously, people. The codex is bad. At best, in a tournament environment, Tyranids will win, in the hands of a decent player, 50% of the time. Maybe 10% against top lists.

    I appreciate the candor of Reecius. We are trying to polish a turd. That’s the truth. Quit sugar coating this men.

    The codex is bad.

    Your ultra-realistic 40K (and therefore ultra negative attitude toward the Nid codex) player,


    • Zarryiosiad January 20, 2014 9:31 am

      The book is out, and the rules are set in stone for at least the next three years. That means we have two choices.

      1) Shelve our Tyranid armies completely (or better yet, sell them on eBay), and curse our fate for the next three years. Spend that time ranting on forum after forum about how we got royally screwed, without even attempting to add anything positive whatsoever to conversations between people who are just trying to make the best of a bad situation. In fact, those people are obviously blind/stupid/GW apologists, and must be belittled at every turn using the smallest words possible so they can understand just what colossal losers they really are, when they could just go to their local gaming store, spend $1,000 on Tau and Eldar, and be winners.

      2) Roll up our sleeves, put on our chest waders and industrial strength rubber gloves, break out the snorkel and goggles, and walk right into the deep end, hoping that the stink isn’t as bad or as deep as it seems. Discuss pros and cons with other, more experienced gamers through forums like these, and try to improve our lot through theoryhammer and research, as well as by playing a boatload of games.

      I know which one I’m choosing.

      • Reecius
        Reecius January 20, 2014 10:17 am

        Spirited debate is awesome, but let’s show one another respect, fellas.

        I like your attitude though, making the best of a bad situation. That said, it is fair and I think necessary to express our disappointment to GW, loudly, in order to show them they can’t give us this poor of a product.

      • ACBrown January 20, 2014 11:47 am

        Certainly, by all means, choose option 2. But am I going to take Nids to Adepticon? No way. You can’t win. And since I play to win (that is what is fun to me), then yes, I am forced to take another army… which I have.

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 9:59 am

      Yup. It’s a turd. But, as we have been saying since day 1, some good lists will emerge in time. I am just bitterly disappointed at how shitty the book is.

  8. Fister January 20, 2014 9:44 am

    Thanks for the article.

    Wow, a lot more hate than I usually see on Frontline’s articles! I almost thought I was reading the BoLS comment section for a moment there. I expect better from you guys. I know you’re disappointed in the new dex but don’t lash out at anyone who dares a dissenting opinion.

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 9:53 am

      Good points, I think folks are venting frustration a bit, fairly, but we do expect everyone to treat one another with respect. Thanks for pointing that out.

      • Fister January 20, 2014 12:49 pm

        Thanks Reece. If Frontline’s community wasn’t so cool, I wouldn’t expect more from us. 🙂

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 9:54 am

      Alright fellas, we encourage spirited debate but show one another respect, that’s the only rule here.

      Hahaha, but that one about Cruddace was really funny! haha

  9. fluger January 20, 2014 9:50 am

    I also am wondering about the much-maligned Swarmlord. He basically already has the Norn Crown and is level 3. I think with 3 Tyrant guards and a *gasp* swarm around him he might be effective against mid-tier armies.

    I still just think Tau and Eldar lol this off the board if they are built for tourney-winning.

    I think if this dex had come out in the beginning of 6th we would be loving it then and hating it now, if that makes sense. Frankly, outside of taudar, the other 6th ed codexes are fairly balanced compared to each other outside of the screamerstar.

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 9:55 am

      Good points.

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 10:00 am

      Swarmy is as good as dead on foot. Count on it. There’s a reason you never saw him in 5th ed, he is just too squishy, too slow, and too expensive. Plus he got nerfed in assault to balance his points increase….

      Sigh. Poor Swarmy, we were home boys once!

      • Hotsauceman1 January 20, 2014 10:09 am

        In a small game he had a thing of tyrant guard, I didnt even worry about him TBH. Most he did was kill a devil fish…..WOOT.
        I mean, Two squads of Fire warriors took him down.

      • fluger January 20, 2014 12:17 pm

        Well, I just think that for the abilities he brings he seems like a better value than the Norn Crown Hive Tyrant. For instance, instead of spending points to get AG on one unit of terms, he can do that. That saves 60 pts. He also has 3 powers instead of 2.

        As to survivability. 2 things improved here, one, the tyrant guard are better (cheaper and they auto-pass LOS), and the regular walking tyrant can’t be 2+ save.

        Also, I was wondering, can one have two Hive Tyrants in one unit of Tyrant Guard?

    • Kevin January 20, 2014 10:04 am

      I wanted the Norn Tyrant because I could make it Fleet along with the Tyrant Guard. Fleet is a big deal in this army.

      The army is set up to make it very tough to kill my synapse before my swarm is on the opponent. The other guy wants to kill my two Tyrants with the Hive Guard, but they’re in 2+ cover and have 16 wounds and T6, so he has to kill my Venomthropes first.

      Let’s theoryhammer the deployment scenario to avoid Tau/Eldar shooting the Venomthropes off the board.

      Against Tau, you need to stay 30″ away from any SMS. Not usually that hard to do. You need to stay out of sight of any markerlights, and anything supported by a toolbox Commander. Also not that hard to do for a turn or two using either terrain, or hiding behind the Tervigon, with the Tyrants and Tyrant Guard sitting in front of it. LOS should be quite obscured. Then I can simply chain out every other unit to within 6″ of either Venomthrope and present a bunch of hard targets.

      Against Eldar, Wave Serpents are the main threat, but it can’t shoot through terrain, and it has to angle for position. Through use of terrain and careful positioning of the Tervigon, you should be able to keep the Venomthropes alive long enough for your army to get where it’s going.

      • Reecius
        Reecius January 20, 2014 10:13 am

        I actually am not a big Theoryhammer guy as the varying conditions of each mission/terrain/deployment/other guy’s tactics setup dramatically alter any theoretical model. It just doesn’t give good data. That is why we always play test stuff, it’s the only way to get usable data, IME.

        I have found that foot Tyrants are as good as dead, almost all the time. With the 2+ they were at least playable, with a 3+? A good player will roll him up and smoke him at his leisure.

        The only way I could see it working is if you spammed foot TMCs but the issue is still that the Tyrants are linchpin units and therefore top target priority. It is such a weakness for the Nids.

        • Kevin January 20, 2014 10:23 am

          Theoryhammer is useful as a way to plan for how you will go about things when faced with certain challenges. What you would do against Serpent Spam is not what you would do against a flying circus. Once you hit the table, things probably won’t go exactly as you imagine them, but that doesn’t change the fact that I need my Venomthropes more than 30″ away from an SMS when I fight Tau.

          It beats making it up and hoping for the best when you see what your opponent has.

          • Reecius
            Reecius January 20, 2014 10:42 am

            Fair play, and yes, you always need a plan of attack. However, I so often see people trying to argue their point to a definitive conclusion through theoryhammer alone which is folly. We can say, hey, in scenario X this would be my general gameplan, but as the saying goes: no plan survives first contact with the enemy.

  10. Xzandrate January 20, 2014 10:02 am

    From a super competitive/beginner stand point the book is very lacking. There is no easy way to play the book. That may be the strongest point, and the same reason you see the Chaos armies as strong.

    I had this same situation with the Dark Eldar in 3rd, 4th, and 5th before the new codex. They were always the poster child of weakest army. But some smart play and list building, and the fact that nobody expected them and were totally unprepared to face them resulted in a high win rate. I think this is what will help the new Tyranid book, the fact that they are a very middle of the line book that could pull out games if people don’t have a way of dealing with certain aspects.

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 10:15 am

      God points. Nids will be uncommon in competitive play due to their crappiness and as such, people won’t be prepared for them.

  11. Hotsauceman1 January 20, 2014 10:11 am

    The problem with warriors is that so much of that str6/7 shooting is ap4. Missile Sides, Heavy burst cannons/Whirlwinds/Assault cannons and so forth Even when you throw ALOT of shots a 4+ isnt going to save them

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 10:14 am

      Yeah, Wave Serpents OWN Warriors as do the entire Tau army. Whirlwinds own them, for crying out loud. Anything Str8 owns them, and they aren’t even good in assault. Sigh, they are so terribad it hurts.

      • Hotsauceman1 January 20, 2014 10:16 am

        Even if they do somehow magically have that cover save of 3+
        “I shoot my riptide, take……16 saves” they are likely dead.

        • Kevin January 20, 2014 10:30 am

          To Hotsauceman1

          How is that different from anything else?

          • Hotsauceman1 January 20, 2014 10:39 am

            The point is if warriors are so crucial to plans, then your hope of using them as synapse is gone

      • Kevin January 20, 2014 10:17 am

        In fairness, there is relatively little Wave Serpents don’t mow down easily, wouldn’t you say?

    • Kevin January 20, 2014 10:16 am

      Yep. But they’re only 10 points per wound, fearless and have synapse. What do you want? Dire Avengers are 13 points with a 4+ and go poof when hit by a heavy flamer. Everything has a weakness.

      • Bigpig January 21, 2014 3:43 pm

        In fairness, your backfield doesn’t run off the board or eat themselves when a are 8-10 pie plate instakills your dire avenger either. the issue with the Warriors is there a fragility compared to the importance of their role. Because of their vulnerability they cannot be relied upon to consistently provide a synapse. They really have to be protected. Because of that need and their importance i dont belive a point per would analysis is appropriate. Again, try playinf them and see how they work on the board. They might work for you bur ive found them lacking. r

  12. Bryan January 20, 2014 10:50 am

    I wonder how much double force org would help nids. Seems to be they have good choices that are bottle necked in a few slots. I know this is only an answer for 2000pts+ but I think that this would open up the codex and is something to be considered as it gives more HQ slots and Heavy slots that are sorely needed.

    Doesn’t answer the question for 1999 and under, but it is something that I think would seriously help nids out is just playing at the 2000pts level, which is around what most people play at already, just allow double FoC

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 11:34 am

      Most people here don’t play at 2K, actually. Our biggest games tend to be 1850pts. It varies by location. But I totally agree with you that double FoC REALLY helps Nids. The extra Heavy and HQ makes a big difference for them.

      The problem is that 2K games require at least 3 hour rounds and logistically in a big tournament, that just isn’t feasible.

      • 40kChris January 20, 2014 7:40 pm

        But… according GW Digital in regards to the new data slates coming out ‘Nids will have the most out of all the armies.

        The first ‘Slate is supposed to have 5, frakking FIVE, formations in it. If the only restriction is points for formations you could max a few units of Lictors in your primary and then take the Deathleaper formation. That includes him and 5 more Lictors outside your FOC. Not that you want to run 11 Lictors and Deathleaper running around, but those WILL open up the ‘dex. Maybe even nicely.

        *Note – I don’t want to get into the ethics of it by GW in the first place, just that it may be an option as soon as this coming Saturday.

        • Reecius
          Reecius January 20, 2014 7:57 pm

          Hell, maybe it will work.

          • 40kChris January 20, 2014 8:15 pm

            It might, it might… lol, not holding my breath though. It *is* GW, but good lord the potential… not like we haven’t had that before. 😉

        • Bigpig January 21, 2014 4:04 pm

          Too bad we cant use them at lvo 😉

      • Bryan January 21, 2014 10:15 pm

        Yeah and that is the other issue, one of time. Which is fine for any ole game. But tournaments as is really can’t handle it. Outside of reworking tournament system overall to fit the larger games in, while somehow not sacrificing games and fairness.

        IF the rules were more streamlined then this could prob happen, but as you know there is far to much convoluted rules and combos that keep the game at a standstill while the pages are being flipped and then argued over.

        If somehow 2k could be worked into a tournament that would be great, but I don’t see it happening without a significant overhaul of the tournament system

  13. Aidobmac January 20, 2014 10:57 am

    No one seems to be mentioning Lictors and their father the Deathleaper. Not only do they have my favorite model in the entire Tyranid line but I think that they could lift some weight as a threatening presence on the battlefield.

    Some form of Nid list involving ramming threats down your opponents throat using winged tyrants, harpies/crone, mawloc/trygon, and infiltrating genestealers and lictors, not to mention units like raveners and gargoyles. I would love to see an army like this that just overwhelms the other army with mixed units to confuse.

    • Jason Brown January 20, 2014 9:33 pm

      I have thought along that same path. Depending on what hits the digital bookshelf on sat, I am thinking about the Deathleaper craziness and genestealers as a massive turn one threat; just have a ton of infiltrating bug dudes. Will some die, oh HELLS yes. But if there are 9 units of infiltrators I am sure a few will make it to turn 2. At the very least I am looking at giving it a whirl. Even teh ugly girls need a dance once in awhile.

  14. iNcontroL January 20, 2014 11:00 am

    I like the spirit of the article 🙂 I think the “fun” part of this book will be everyone searching for those 2-3 needles in the haystack of lists. I am not a fan of the idea that “all you need is cover saves and you are great” — I just came from a tourney where cover saves were really nice yes but vs those tau/eldar which are becoming the majority of the field (or close to it) your banking off of something that can absolutely be taken away from you. Now I know, it doesn’t need to be EVERYTHING, But when you run an assault army with very little shooting and soft units T6 3+ is decent but not going to get you close to an army designed to not allow H2H you are in a LOT of trouble. I use gargoyles and Doom to tie up my opponent so that I can get in there but they removed Doom and made Gargoyles more expensive for what they did AND took book powers away so I don’t have access to Telekine, Eternal warrior and higher toughness with Iron Arm. Again, we’ve all heard this before so I don’t mean to sit here and be a broken record but I guess what I am saying is I don’t want to go to a tourney and be like “well, if I face X I am pretty much dead or in need of them messing up a LOT and me getting lucky” I would like to field an army with confidence that there are bad matchups sure, but I have the game in my own control. Think that is unreasonable? Tau and Eldar can say that right? Well they are the newest codexes.. as a Tyranid player I’d like to think I was allowed to get my hopes up for a similar thing as well 🙁 You keep saying “it’s only been a couple weeks” but to me that just reads we are still inside the safe mourning period.. we will find decent lists in a few months time sure. And by then we will be able to handle it because we will have mourned 🙂

    • Jason Brown January 20, 2014 9:35 pm

      Did you use the 5th or 6th ed book at Tshft?

  15. Km January 20, 2014 11:11 am

    I’m not a nid player but why not try 6 max squads of genestealers with a broodlord as ur troops, twin flyrants, lots of gargoyles then whatever support troops you need because genestealers do not require synapse and can infiltrate 12 inches away from the enemy behind los blocking terrain (which LVO has a lot of) and go second?

    This means 60 genestealers ready for a first turn charge, with units that can support them by turn 2…. Which will scare a taudar player so much as they can only overwatch so many models down, so some will be in combat turn 1!

  16. Shane January 20, 2014 11:44 am

    An interesting use I’ve found for tervigons is using hive commander to outflank them. This puts a minimum of two troop units directly into your opponents deployment zone and if your clever with objective placement they will be sitting on at least one objective as well.

    This also gets the tervigon away from the 30 termigants he will likely kill by dieing within 12 of them and is very useful for improving synapse coverage across the board if your not running dual flyrant.

    Add to that the tervigon only really has short range shooting, it puts him within range to use that shooting the turn he arrives

    • Jason Brown January 20, 2014 9:37 pm

      Put the miasma cannon on her for LULz.

  17. Shane January 20, 2014 11:59 am

    Another concept I’ve been working on is a reserve bomb list. The idea is to create a pod of supporting units to deploy which includes at least 1 venomthrpoe, 2 x 1 Zoe, Tyrant & Guard, 1-2 shooting MC and 2 units of termis/Hormis

    Then everything else deepstrikes or outflanks to get directly in the face of your opponent. Now you’re going to need either a coms relay or swarmy to make this work, but I think you can create a list that has so many threats in your opponents face turn 2 that they are forced into mistakes or simply won’t be able to kill it all before it strikes turn 3.

    The only problem I see is that 2 of those outflanking units will likely have to be gene stealers as the list is a little low on troops and points

  18. IndigoJack January 20, 2014 12:07 pm

    “Tyranid Warriors are terribad, right? S8 kills them instantly and it only has a 4+ armor save. What garbage! What edition is this? Long Fang spam died over a year ago. Now it’s S6 and S7 everywhere. Everywhere!!!”

    I think you’ve forgotten about riptides. They can shoot a S8 AP2 large blast and erase those warriors very easily. Throw 5 markerlights on the warriors (2 for ignore cover, 3 to raise the BS to 6 for the re-roll on get’s hot) and you can kiss those warriors bye-bye. And while I’m not saying that riptides are everywhere, I am saying that they’re at least as common as the hellturkey was a year ago.

  19. narceron January 20, 2014 2:22 pm

    Ugg, does this mean my orks are going to get pony bent, too?

    • Fister January 20, 2014 2:39 pm

      I sure hope not! I’m considering Orks myself!

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 6:06 pm

      Please, no!

  20. Boltcutter January 20, 2014 6:09 pm

    Maybe Im the oddball but of all the elite units you have in the game i feel strong troop core is still the hardest to beat in the game. Sure theres units out there that are disgusting overpowered. But the game in 6th edition is about troops and objectives. If you kill the opponents scoring units and you live and get even a single objective, you got it in the bag. I’ve heard someone say in this post alone how the chaos codex is horrible. Personally I play chaos and you know what i dont own a helldrake. Its a great model and has terrific uses, i dont deny that. I play hard nurgle. Plague marines, Plague zombies, alot of them and I do ok. Sure I dont win every game but you need to adapt to survive in the warhammer 40k universe. Nids will be fine they need to find their synergy. and they have a lot of cool troops. Biggest thing i noticed that seem to change this codex from last is the amount of ranged fire power they can dish out. A guy i played this weekend use a swarmlord with dominion and a few other synapse creatures and had no problems with synapse at all. Also he used gaunts with the assault 3 guns and they worked ok. He also used the psychic power that reduced ws and bs and stacked it so that worked pretty well too. Theres defintely some good in this codex that i can see and im not a tyranid player simply because I have too many models invested in guard and orks to wanna try another swarm army. Sorry about the length of this as its my first post and hope it wasnt aweful.

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 20, 2014 8:00 pm

      Hey dude, welcome to FLG!

      And we hate on Chaos not because the book is weak, but because so many units in it are poorly designed (Warp Talons, Mutilators, CSMs, etc.). We do it because we love Chaos and wanted it to be a more well rounded codex. We all still have Chaos armies!

      But yeah, troop heavy armies do well, and that is how I enjoy playing, too. Nurgle troops are some of the best out there, too. Nids just missed the mark in terms of what they could have been is why I get upset. I think that could have been a great book.

  21. THE General Oadius January 20, 2014 10:09 pm

    More bat reps!!!

  22. Mr E January 21, 2014 12:46 am

    I will smile to the gods and make a donation to the corporate to break out the even bigger poop stick for orks, I wonder how much $$$$$$$ for them to double nerf Gazzi and warboss’s in general.

    They are going to suck as bad as incubi by whenever they are up next. next release 40k in march? Perfect then everything will make sense that GW development are just high off their ass’s, get rid of boarding planks too, and nerf stock boys down to 2 attacks 3 charging, or make them hit each other on to hit rolls of 1 always though it was stupid they have this blender crazed mountain of dice but no animosity like in fantasy or beat each other ober our own heads while the enemies mow us down.

    And praise the gods for my book it is the envy of all for the time being, I love my eldar and have killed entire craftworlds, feal bad for bugsculptor and other hard core bug players, I know how it feels to have the under powered dex or something that you just dont find fun to play with.

    And I am sure that plenty of the meta will get dropped from the top tier because of the swarm, and it is sure to change the meta even though we can’t tell how just yet. the LVO will be a good example of what a new dex can surprise people with in the early stages when everyone who doesn’t play a codex ends up thinking they know its nuances only to find much to their chagrin that the rules have changed suckas.

    OH and love to blow all my Xmass and other 10% of everything I make on any GW plastic crap, so time to bust out and build the massive geanstealer cult and tide of bio warriors to give this mess a spin in the mire of the shit pool that is internet theory hammer 40k. Just sitting waiting assembly and painting.

  23. Mr E January 21, 2014 12:48 am

    oh and dont forget that the wierd boy has a melta pistol at bs2 that gets hot ROFL

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 21, 2014 8:34 am

      Hahahaha, lol!

  24. Shane January 21, 2014 1:27 am

    There are just so many small things the development team could have done to improve the new nid codex.

    I really think that unlike Chaos, which is more of a flavor/play style issue, the bug codex is just poorly executed. Don’t get me wrong I’m not saying you wont be able to have fun with it, I think its better than Chaos in that sense, I just don’t see it winning major events.

    That in and of its self doesn’t mean GW failed with Nids, I’d suggest Tau and Eldar were bigger failures in that they are almost unbeatable in skilled hands. If those two armies weren’t so powerful the new Nids might actually be alright.

    lets just hope the reason for the Tyrinids relative low power level is due to some future combo with upcoming data slates or supplements.

    • Reecius
      Reecius January 21, 2014 8:34 am

      You said it well. Chaos had a goal, they were going for theme. Nids just missed the mark huge.

  25. fleetofclaw January 21, 2014 11:16 am

    Author’s list only has 4 synapse sources, 3 will be dead in 3 turns or less, people may just ignore the Norn rant, especially since he’s a wet noodle in combat, but plenty of armies have the firepower to now him down anyway.

  26. Mooseboy January 22, 2014 4:38 pm

    Also, don’t know if anyone has mentioned, the author suggests hiding a flyrant in a Tyrant guard unit until you want to unleash it. I don’t think a Hive Tyrant can leave a Tyrant Guard unit once it has been joined, as the Tyrant is not an Independent character. So your Flyrant would be stuck till your guard are killed.

    • Brassangel February 5, 2014 5:38 pm

      You are right, he can’t leave the Tyrant Guard. He can join “as if he were” an IC, but he never becomes an IC, nor gains the ability to leave as one.

      I suppose it’s okay to buy 1 Tyrant Guard and ride him until he dies; then fly the Tyrant around.

      Kind of expensive though.

      In the games I’ve played so far, with both wins and losses, my opponents and teammates (depending on the game type) have made the same comment:

      “Tyranids have cool stuff, but they are too slow.”

      I have noticed that, even with lots of deep striking units, and broods with Adrenal Glands, the army spends too much time NOT in combat. Against armies like Eldar, that’s a nightmare. Fleet is no longer much in the way of a speed boost. The fact that no Tyranid units get to assault after running was a miss on GW’s part.

      I’m not saying it should have been an army-wide rule, and I’d rather have a book that requires tactics instead of just pushing models across the table mindlessly. But would it have been so bad to give Hormagaunts and Raveners Run + Assault? Even just those two units, with no points or stat changes, could have made a huge difference.

  27. Hadley March 26, 2014 4:30 am

    There are loads of tyranid warrior insta killers that double out T4 multi wound creature. Marines are everywhere and often have missile launchers. S8 Krak missiles, S10 devastators with large blast etc. Mate, warriors are over.