Tyranid Lists That Might Suck the Least

Bugs in the rear!

Bugs in the rear!

Nids, I just can’t quit you!

Check out the Tactics Corner for more great articles!

Soooo, don’t write articles when you’re going on no sleep and after a few beers, haha, made a few errors in this article which I will notate in red. Sorry for the confusion. 

So despite GW dropping an elephantine doo-doo on their customers with this ill-conceived, terribly balanced codex….I still want to play my bugs! But, how to do it without wanting to punch myself in the nuts, repeatedly?

Well, Nids do have a few kernels of corn in the turd that is their book if you hunt for them. But then you have to sit down and dig through the shit, don’t you? Not a fun task but possibly worth the effort. I think if you focus on only those few good units, disregard most of the rest, and play those units very, very well….you might be able to win more games than you lose. Maybe.

So, which units look like they might have some life in them? In our play-testing, these are the units I am drawn towards so far. Too bad almost all of them are in Heavy Support or HQ =(

But, enough Debbie Downer talk, let’s focus on making a Nid list that wins games! It can be done…I believe!

tyranids 019

Flyrants with dual Devourers.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, we all know these guys are good. They were good last edition, but now they’re cheaper, more accurate and mastery level 2. Nice! Buuuuuut, they drop like flys, often giving up both synapse and warlord. Boo. That said, they are one of the best point for point models Nids have access to, kill flyers, light tanks, infantry, provide synapse, and can fight fairly well in combat, too. So, I’ll have 2, thank you. And screw taking Dominion, these guys often fly out of range of the rest of the army, so screw it. Give them all-out attack powers and go into the game assuming they will die like dogs, but take a lot of the enemy with them before they go! Death and Glory! Wait…that’t not how it goes…

I have considered giving one of them assault weapons, but the second these guys touch the ground, they’re going to die a terrible death. They may take a unit with them on the way, but a high priority target like this guy that is on the ground, in front of the enemy army may as well start digging his own grave. It’s still worth trying, but typically you want these fellas hunting from the skies where they can rain death down on the enemy with their 12, tin-linked strength 6 shots.


These guys are a Forge World unit that are worth taking a loot at. The aren’t super exciting on the first read, but they’re cheap, fairly fast (Move Through Cover and Fleet), hit decently hard (3 attacks, I5, poison at str 5, ws 3 and Toxic Miasma), and are reasonably resilient (T5, 4W, 3+ and Regeneration). T5 is a bummer as Smash attacks are so prevalent these days. However, they do come in the HQ slot, and, here is the best part, in broods of 1-3 MCs (They’re not MC’s anymore….lame). Nice! At only 10pts over a Thunderfire Cannon, you can quite easily take 2 for a cheap price point and have 8, T5 wounds to chew through that also provide an all important Synapse bubble that is larger due to their being 2, 60mm bases from which to measure it.

Malanthropes also have a special rule: Prey Adaptation. This grants them, and any units in Syanpse preferred enemy against an Infantry unit the Malathropes have destroyed in assault.

(Other than cheap synapse, they aren’t so hot, anymore. Nothing to see here, move along =P).

Devourer Gants

These little buggers are really solid troops. A unit of 15-20 with 10 Devourers makes for a cheap, resilient, solid scoring unit. I like them quite a bit, actually. Hormagants are good too, but they suffer form the same fate ALL assault oriented troops do: if they are going into assault as they are designed to do, they are often dying and not winning the game by scoring you objectives. Gants though, shoot and scoot onto objectives. Cheap, good offense, and a scoring unit. Yes please, I’ll take 4.

As always, Syanpse is the killer with these plucky little chaps…but that is true of the rest of the army, too.

Crones and Harpies

Everything counts in large amounts. These guys are pretty lame on their own but when looked at in the perspective of a list built around units like this, they are pretty good because they are cheap. That then means you can take lots of them. Fill the skies with cheap FMCs and you may kill some of the enemy when their bloddy, broken bodies come crashing down upon them!

Take 3. Give them no upgrades. Plan on them dying horribly. However, 3 of these and 2 Flyrants means that usually, at least a few of them will make it to where you want them. They are still MCs after all, and can pack a wallop. The Crone is great for hunting Flyers and ground targets with his Flamer and Vector Strike (if they are close enough…stupid huge flying base!) and the Harpy is super cheap, has a decent set of weapons and buffs other units on the assault. Not bad.

4-24-13 pics 068

Zoenthropes and Venomethropes

They’re not so hot, but they buff a lot. I made a funny!

Venomes are all but mandatory. Too bad they don’t add much in the face of the big 3 (Eldar, Tau and Daemons) all of whom largely ignore cover. Damn near every army has access to Ignore Cover in some way though, and as such Venom’s diminish in utility, but, when they’re good, they’re great. So, at their reasonable price point, you take them and deal with it. A lot of folks are taking a single Venome or 2, and hiding them. I am actually thinking about taking a full unit of 3 and having them go up the table, assaulting, with the rest of the Gribblies. Why not? Target saturation is the Russian strategy and it worked on the Germans! Sort of! But seriously, 3 Venomes is beefy enough to take a good amount of attention to kill, and fights fairly well in assault. Hey, might as well try, right? And you know, they have Toxic Miasma which might kill a dude or two.

Zoens are the same. Not great at all on their own, but hey, they provide reasonably affordable Synapse, reasonable durability, are not in a hotly contested FoC slot and have fairly decent psychic powers. OK, we can work with that. Slap him in a Bastion perhaps, take a unit of 2 to avoid giving up First Blood too easily…yeah. You kind of have to take them for Synapse and then hope for a good second power. Warp Blast or Lance can do work though honestly, in the right circumstances. There are just a lot of failure points to work through (psychic check, deny the witch, rolling to hit and wound or armor pen, etc.) so they often frustrate you. That said, they do have the potential to rock!

Heavy Support

Alright, here’s where it’s at! Yeah, some actually good, exciting units here! Ah, my kingdom for a 4th Heavy slot!

Exocrines, Tyranofexes, Biovores , and Carnifexes and the Stone Crusher Carnifex are all the hotness! Trygons are OK. Mawlocs are OK. I know a lot of folks like them, but in our test games the Mawloc has been pretty shitty and really underwhelming. I think he’s better used to just run up the field than Deep Striking as a cheap, 6 wound MC, honestly. If you go second, then reserve him, otherwise just have him shoot up the field. He will occasionally blow your mind but is inconsistent, IMO, and not a great choice outside of a list designed for units like him.

But enough of him.

Exocrines are cheap, tough, and shoot well. Nice! For the points, this guy is a solid choice. In my games with this model I have been very happy with the results. My only complaint is that he tends to die quickly as he is a dangerous target and has to get within 24″ to do work, and in 40K 24″ is a lethal range band to be in. Even 30″ would really increase his survivability.

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Biovores are just fantastic. Cheap, durable, and a great weapon. Really, this is an all-star unit. As even if they miss, their weapon can still effect their target (spores can assault the turn they appear), and they went down in points and gained a wound. Right on! Take 9 of the bastards, you will not be disappointed.

Carnies got cheaper. Nuff said. They were good before but too pricey. Now they’re priced aggressively and provide a great unit either naked as a bargain assault MC. Consider Adrenal Glands to speed him up, or Crushing Claws so that he doesn’t have to smash. Don’t forget to use Living Battering Ram as at base strength 9 Hammer of Wraith attacks, that is some ass whippery right there!

Don’t bother with Spine Banks, though. Most folks are looking at the Dakkafex pattern (Dual Devouerers) because that is what we’re used to. It’s great! 12, str 6, twin linked shots nets an average of 9 hits at 18″ range (onslaught is great here) for a bargain price. However, the Carnifex has a lot of good builds. Consider dual Stranglethorne Cannons: two, large, st6, pinning blasts is some solid firepower (or it WOULD be solid firepower if you could actually do it. Only one Stangler per Fex…back to Devourers we go!). Or with Bio-Plasma, too. Onslaught, again, is great. Adrenal glands, too. The Carnifex is back and a solid choice. Hell, take 9!

The Stone Crusher Carnifex is a FW unit that is pricey but I think bears some consideration now. Here’s why. First, he has the all-important 2+ save. That counts for a lot. Krak Missiles, etc. don’t bypass his armor. Small Arms fire will land half the wounds on him they will on a 3+ save Carnifex. That means that often, it will take twice as much firepower to take him down. He also has boosted regen, allowing him to reroll failed regen rolls of a 1, giving him a 3.5 out of 6, or 58% chance to gain back a wound each turn. Not bad! That makes him surprisingly tough for a T6, 4 wound model.

He also has Crushing Claws which now mean he pretty much never has to smash (Armor Bane and +1 Strength) and he gets +1 on the damage table vs. vehicles and buildings. He will devastate any AV unit he touches! That plus D3 Hammer of Wrath attacks means he packs a punch and while slow, is pretty tough. I think this old boy bears some serious consideration now.

T-Fex. Yeeeeah, boooy! This is my guy, right here. I love the model and always wanted to use him in 5th ed, but he just cost too many points to justify it. Now, he is much cheaper, and still has that all important 2+ save. This plus 6 wounds and a reasonable price point makes him very appealing. So far in our test games, the T-Fex has reliably been the one MC to actually survive the game. When he dies it has only been to Jaws (or something similar) or in assault when he has been massively out-matched. Generally though, this tough SOB can get up the field and into enemy lines, reliably. Just be aware of his limitations. For me, Acid Spray, all day. Cheap, maybe with Adrenal Glands or Regen, and lots of them. I really think the T-Fex is a unit you can build a list around as he has just the right combination of traits to make him durable enough, and hard hitting enough to get the job done. Take a Thorax Swarm too, if you want to beef him up, I prefer Shreeder Beetles as shred and rending on str3 is a great combo!

Enough Jibber-Jabber, Let’s See a LIST already!

So, after a lot of thought and testing, here are a few lists I think can actually do work.

List 1:    1750pts

Flyrant: Dual Devourer

Flyrant: Dual Devourer

Gants x 15

Gants x 15

Gants x 15

Gants x 10

Venomes x 2

Zoeys x 2







Insert your preferred method of reserve manipulation.

So, this list is all about lots of big bugs, lots of pressure and flexibility.

If you’re going first, you go balls to the wall, and attack ultra aggressively with everything. Your little bugs take objectives, your big bugs run forward, die, but hopefully not before crippling your opponent. With the spare points you want to use them to buy something to increase your reserve rolls because is this army goes second, all the big guys reserve. You plan for a turn 2 alpha strike. Your FMCs and Mawlocs come in from reserves and overwhelm (hopefully) your opponent.

List 2:    1750pts

This is actually the list I am more drawn to.

Flyrant: Dual Devourers

Malanthropes x 2

Gants x 10

Gants x 10

Gants x 10

Gants x 10

Venomes x 3

Zoeys x 2







You have some points to spare for more Gants or Biomorphs, etc. You can also sub out T-Fexes for Carnies or Exocrines as you  desire, but the T-Fexes stand out to me as they are so much more durable. You send in wave 1: Operation Fall on the Sword, which consists of the FMCs to occupy the enemy, then the T-Fexes come to further occupy the enemy, hopefully leaving your Gants to win you the game, supported by the other ground pounding units.

List 3:    1750pts

Prime: Norn Crown

Gants x 20: Devourers x 10

Gants x 20: Devourers x 10

Gants x 20: Devourers x 10

Gants x 20: Devourers x 10

Gants x 20: Devourers x 10

Venomes x 2







Biovores x 3

This list shoots you to death with lots and lots of large blast weapons. The Prime is A number 1 to die as he is your primary synapse, but everything else is pure kill power. Tons of dakka, good AA, decent assault, good scoring power. Drown the enemy in dice! Muahaha!

So there you have it! Let me know what you all think. This turd needs polishing! lol


About Reecius

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

59 Responses to “Tyranid Lists That Might Suck the Least”

  1. Talhydras January 31, 2014 1:46 am #

    I’m sorry, but none of these lists are going to work in any way.

    I’ve had a fair share of games against a guy at my FLGS and he played ‘nids the way he used to play them in 4th or 5th.
    Every time he lacked synapse, and every time he was shot to pieces and started dying when he had no synapse left.

    Your lists have the exact same problem.

    List 1 has 3 units with synapse (2 Flyrants and a unit of 2 Zoeys)
    List 2 has 3 units with synapse (Flyrant, a unit of 2 Malanthropes and a unit of 2 Zoeys)
    List 3 has 2 units with synapse (Prime and a single Zoey)

    These lists won’t work. The net is killed too easily.

    Flyrants don’t work either anymore. I have yet to see a single game where they are actually worth their points…
    Maybe swap out one of them for a walking Tyrant with the Crown and 2 Guards and you have reliable long-range synapse in the center for all the little bugs. You can hide them behind your Venoms and the ‘Fexes, making them virtually invulnerable…

    • Reecius January 31, 2014 8:23 am #

      They won’t work in any way? lol, well, tell me how you really feel, don’t worry about pulling your punches! =P

      A walking Tyrant with Norn Crown and Tyrant Guard is a massive points sink though, like, massive. You talk about Flyrants not getting their points back, how is a 400+pt unit ever going to do that? I’m not trying to be combative here, but a walking Tyrant is a dead Tyrant in our experience. I’d rather take the Prime, honestly.

      So far in our test games, these have been the only units that had pulled their weight at all.

      • ScouseMatt January 31, 2014 8:32 am #

        Same here, been running a pair of Flying Tyrnts with devourers and they’re the only thing in the book worth it’s points. Always a performer.

        • Reecius January 31, 2014 8:37 am #

          Yeah, same same. Gargs do well as a first wave, distraction unit as do Hormagants, but that’s about it. =(

          • Km January 31, 2014 10:21 am

            Surely if you took 6 broods of 30 hormagants and 3 broods of 30 gargoyles and charged them into your opponent’s face with tyranid primes hidden in the broods for synapse support you could swamp your opponent with fearless (thanks to synapse) assault units which would be pretty scary for a shooting army… Also meaning their high strength weapons are worth nothing against the majority of your force (your bright lance killed a hormagant!). I know my local tau forces and my mechdar couldn’t take it!

          • Reecius January 31, 2014 11:55 am

            I believe you, but all of King Midas’ gold couldn’t get me to buy, build, paint and play that army! lol =P

    • Kevin January 31, 2014 8:27 am #

      This is exactly right. Flyrants suck ass because you can’t keep them alive.It’s like running a Bloodthirster with no daemonic rewards. Nobody does that. Use some friggin’ Tyrant Guard and a large synapse bubble!

      • Talhydras January 31, 2014 10:29 am #

        Just sayin’, every time I encountered a flyrant he died to 5 Kabal Warriors and 2 Venoms. I shoot him down with a goddamn splinter rifle and then all hell breaks loose from the cannons.

        Yes, I know, this is very specific. However, this hasn’t been the first incident – with several opponents – that the Nid-player’s flyrant died a horrible death biting the curb. But hey, Meta’s differ and I personally will never employ a Flyrant. I have had my share of success with a walking one.

        And yeah, a Tyrant with 2 Guards, Crown and even the minimum of upgrades (like a venom cannon) brings me close to 350 points and more, but you have to consider the reliability that it brings to the table.
        Not as a pure offensive beast but as a supporting HQ.
        2 *point-efficient* Flyrants ARE going to help me bring more bugs to the table. However, what use is this when they die and waves after waves of Gaunts start eating themselves? It’s more than just a fact that ‘Nids with the new codex have to be more careful about synapse than ever, so I prefer a more expensive walking Tyrant over a Flyrant any day.

        Just my two cents… 😉

        • Reecius January 31, 2014 11:57 am #

          You are totally welcome to your opinion (and welcome to FLG!) but you will have a REALLY hard time convincing me a Flyrant is easier to kill in a Dark Eldar meta than a walking Tyrant. DE with greater range and speed will 86 a Tyrant on foot in no time flat, that is a perfect target for them. If the Flyrant hits the deck, yeah, he’s screwed, but until that happens he is far, far safer than a Tyrant on foot.

          Neither is very tough, lol, but I’ll take my chances in the air.

          If I was going to take a static synapse creature, I’d go for the Tervigon, personally.

          • bugsculptor January 31, 2014 6:50 pm

            The walkrant does have a good regeneration combo with a couple of guards – you can safely dump the first 3 wounds on the tyrant then auto LOS further wounds onto the guards.

            The walking tyrant should be more resilient than a tervigon… even with regen. You can basically make an 8+ wound regen monster.

      • Reecius January 31, 2014 12:03 pm #

        Flyrants for me have been one of the only half way decent models in the book. A Tyrant on foot with Tyrant Guard seems to me to be disgustingly overpriced and still very easily killed, even playing wound distribution shenanigans.

        I killed Swarmy with 2 guard in a single round of shooting with Orks! lol

    • Angelofblades January 31, 2014 10:03 am #

      Do you play on a table with no terrain or no LoS blocking terrain?

      I’ve found it more and more often that people who are complaining about flyrants eating dust often have no LoS blocking terrain on the board.

      I just feel that the gaming community as a whole have to come to an agreement that while there is something that we cannot adjust and have to accept (Codexe’s & Rules) there is something we can affect and change.

      That is terrain.

      With 6th ed, if it’s not high LoS blocking terrain, it’s worthless terrain. The big 3 codexe’s all effectively ignore cover saves, but for the most part, still adhere to LoS rules. Markerlights can’t mark you, if they can’t see you. Wave serpents can shoot you if they can’t see you. Buffmanders can’t buffmand if they can’t see a target. Tau have 1 weapon that ignores LoS, while Eldar have 2, and almost no one runs them.

      I can’t remember the last time I’ve seen someone actually use SMS to fire at something in range it couldn’t see, or another eldar player besides myself use Nightspinners or a Doomweaver battery (yay barrage!)

      I mean seriously. Play a game against a Tau, Taudar or Eldar list without any LoS blocking terrain. I’m sure anyone here can tell you exactly just how that game is going to go. Hell you might as well play on an open table and make a mad dash towards their lines.

      Honestly, if you claim that flyrants wouldn’t survive, but play without any LoS blocking terrain, I don’t think you should be complaining. If you do have adequate LoS blocking terrain, then it is up to you, as the player, to figure out how to make that happen on the board.

      You can’t fix the book. Then fix the table.

      • Talhydras February 1, 2014 2:35 am #

        I catch your drift, of course we use LOS-blocking terrain.
        Otherwise we’d be… we’ll, like you said, sitting ducks.

        I do, of course, see the offensive potential of a Flyrant with Devourers, but if you are not using him as the flying dude playing hide-n-seek and instead actually shoot something, the target is probably going to die… but chances are the Flyrant might get a response.
        Another idea would be a Flyrant with Bonesword and Lashwhip. As long as he is tied in combat, he doesn’t get shot. And as long as he finishes off the enemy in his round, he is likely to cause a lot of havoc.

        Of course this depends on your use of the available terrain. You can try to move the Flyrant in a way that he kills a unit/vehicle without being able to get shot to pieces in return, but then heck, the model is also pretty big. Still, that’s the idea behind tactics…

        It’s a matter of personal preference, so I guess there is no definite solution to this. Swarmlords get shot by Orks, Ork-bikers get beaten up by Fire Warriors… things happen. 😉

        As regards the Tervigon: I’m still a fan, but only as Troops. The nerf of the death backlash makes it kind of a hate-love, though… -.-

  2. Baz January 31, 2014 1:48 am #

    Only one stranglethorn cannon is allowed per fex I’m afraid.

    • Reecius January 31, 2014 8:24 am #


      • fleetofclaw January 31, 2014 11:49 am #

        I miss the good ol’ 4e days of the sniper Fex where you could have a barbed strangler + hvc.

        • Reecius January 31, 2014 11:57 am #

          True dat! Never thought I’d be saying I missed 4th ed Nids….

          • Chuckles February 3, 2014 7:42 am

            Really? The 4ed Codex was awesome! It had one or two bum units (hormagaunts, lictors, blords outside of stealer shock) but apart from that it was fantastic.

  3. HiveFleetMuloch January 31, 2014 2:25 am #

    I also like the T-fex, he’s just a complete asshole. Blocking fire lanes, being surprisingly fast with adrenal glands, wrecking medium infantry with double template death, stalling units that would otherwise give you’re army trouble, and he’s a heck of alot cheaper too!

    I am starting to see the flyrants as such a liability, very fragile and you lose synapse+warlord when they die so it ends up being 230 points spent hiding. Not that anything else is decent in the HQ. Probably prime to join with venomthropes for added survivability and synapse bubble on them. Maybe Deathleaper too for his ability to be ridiculously annoying. And the two of them are only 30 points more than 1 Flyrant. Lack of AA in book make not taking the Flyrant very difficult though.

    Gargoyles are looking to be amazing, with poison+blinding venom they would have no issue taking down dangerous units and stalling. Still fragile though…

    I think for troops a small warrior unit to babysit the biovores is a cheap synapse and scoring option. Still vulnerable but a little bit more reliable than gaunts while also not requiring forward synapse to be held for the biovores.

    Only thing I’m not really sure whether I’m positive or negative are zoanthropes. cheap synapse and best user of psychic powers IMO (because they aren’t the size of a dragon nor are they aggressive.) but the loss of biomancy plus brotherhood is a kick in the nuts for them.

    Hive guard are still good and safest anti-armor option at range, just not as good as before. Completely ignoring cover saves might make them super skimmer hunters.

    Horms are actually alright naked, but with the nerf of the tervigon I don’t really think termagants can be used as aggressively in combat so default to horms now.

    List I’m thinking about running:

    Prime: Rending Claws–130

    3x Venomthropes-135
    3x Hive Guard-165
    2x Zoanthrope-100

    3x Warriors-90
    30x Hormagaunts-150
    30x Hormagaunts-150

    Fast attack
    30x Gargoyles-poison 240

    Heavy Support
    3x Biovore-120
    T-fex-adrenal glands, shreddershard-200
    T-fex-adrenal glands, shreddershard-200

    for 1750 with 70 points to spare
    not too much shooting but everything is fast and will be in someones face on turn 2.

    • Reecius January 31, 2014 8:39 am #

      Your list looks pretty solid, but there is no kill power it feels. The T-Fexes are the only units that really seem to do work in there. Poison Gargs though can get it done. It feels like assault would, ironically, by your weakness. That and no AA at all. Do you have a plan for Drakes? How about really beastly assault units?

      • HiveFleetMuloch January 31, 2014 10:22 am #

        I have to agree with you but I’m not sure where it could go, maybe dropping the hive guard for a flyrant with my 70 extra points.

        • Reecius January 31, 2014 12:04 pm #

          Yeah, that is the same issue I have been having: when you pay for the babysitting units and troops, you have nothing left for kill power.

          • HiveFleetMuloch January 31, 2014 12:17 pm

            Any suggestions for adding a bit of kill power? I’m stuck haha

  4. Sensei January 31, 2014 2:35 am #

    Malanthropes are only infantry, not MCs in the new book. Still, for their points they are a decent choice.

    Also, synapse needs to be spread around the army more. I’m a nid player and although warriors and shrikes still die to S8 firepower, they are more effective because they can keeps points down by mixing weapons and, with the ability to get larger and more units on the table, tend to be targeted less just due to the number of other targerts out there.
    I’m finding warriors and shrikes most effective in small 3-4 model units to spread synapse and fire barbed stranglers at targets of opportunity. Keep them out of sight or in cover from S8 threats, and present better targets to avoid losing them.

    I’m also liking lictors and stealers. Not as good as they used to be, but Lictors now able to infiltrate is a benefit. I’ve also been able to get small 5 man stealer squads with a brood lord up close by infiltrating out of line of sight. Lictors are great for homing deepstrikers, whether it’s gargs for a cover shield, flyrants to bring some backfield dakka or synapse or trygon/mawlocs, although I wouldn’t rely on the mawloc missile. Lictors at least give the opportunity to get deepstrikers where they are needed, as long as the lictors get on the board first (infiltrating helps).

    • Link-Hero-1 January 31, 2014 3:41 am #

      “Malanthropes are only infantry, not MCs in the new book.”

      Yup, made me mad when I saw it. Pretty much worthless if you ask me. 100+ for a Model with T5 and a 3+ is just insulting.

      • Reecius January 31, 2014 8:16 am #

        Weak, I missed that. That’s what I get for writing an article when I am exhausted and after a few drinks! lol

  5. bigpig January 31, 2014 3:03 am #

    What Sensei said. Malanthropes are not MCs any more. Another big elephant doodoo by GW on us :(. Too bad. I ran one as a cheap HQ and half price Trygon at the last BAO and it did really well!

  6. Slice'n'Dice January 31, 2014 3:17 am #

    Good to see you’re not giving up on the bugs just yet!

    I’ve been having some mixed results in my first batch of games, but am slowly evolving my list into something that works for me.

    The main units I see missing from your list as golden units in my experience are Gargoyles (These guys have worked great for me so far!) and Troop Tervigons – not nearly as good as the old dex, but still a reliable scorer with reliable synapse.

    My 1,750 list:

    Ground Tyrant w/ Venom Cannon + 1 guard
    Dakka Flyrant (possibly reserve, depending on what I’m up against and whether I go first)

    Troop Tervy
    30 gants
    10 gants (reserved)

    2 Zoeys
    2 Zoeys
    3 Hive Guard

    20 Gargoyles

    3 Biovores
    3 Biovores
    Tfex w/cannon

    Lots of synapse, lots of dakka, lots of long range high power. Anyways – works for me :o)

    • Reecius January 31, 2014 8:25 am #

      Looks like a solid list, glad it’s working for you!

  7. Sensei January 31, 2014 3:39 am #

    Yea, if you can get that malanthrope to hit and finish off a pre-existing assault, the benefits relayed to the rest of your units within its synapse range are great. Would be awesome if it was still an MC, but I understand why it’s not when you look at the buff it gives nearby units once it kills something. On the plus, you can take 3, and its stats are some of the biggest numbers I’ve seen around for an infantry class model, so that seriously ups your chances.

    Only other downside is the malanthrope is not a character, therefore can’t be your warlord so you have to have another HQ unit, but not a huge deal as there will always be use for a flyrant.

  8. Tomas aka Shun January 31, 2014 4:33 am #

    I have been trying a version of list number 1 against pure Eldar, Tau and Taudar, and have not lost any of the games yet.

    The changes I have introduced are due to Stronghold Assault being allowed where I play, and to bring your own LOS blocking terrain helps nids a lot. 1 defense line with comms relay and 2 bastions are very much welcomed in the list. But I think the list can as well be played with only one bastion if you dont play in deserted fields.

    Mawlocs and biovores have been my stars in all games, not allowing the jet bikes to move out from under a second floor roof, and using them as turn five objective grabbers.

    • Reecius January 31, 2014 8:26 am #

      Nice, those are some good tactics!

  9. Lockjaw January 31, 2014 5:26 am #

    I have had a few games against the bugs with my flying circus and its certainly not a given. With lots of backfield synapse shielded by a few venoms and in some area terrain its a pain to get rid of. Devilgaunts ALL over, alot of groundingchecks while trying to handle the big guys coming at you.
    Sure with Tau you can stand back and shoot the living crap out of the bugs but with a Flying Circus thats not gonna work.

    • Reecius January 31, 2014 8:27 am #

      Yeah, Devogants have been kicking ass for me, too.

  10. Adam January 31, 2014 8:08 am #

    Hate to breake it to you, but you can’t two Stranglers, or two venom cannons, or a venom cannon and strangler on the same model. 🙁

    • Reecius January 31, 2014 8:15 am #

      Damn it! lol

      • Adam January 31, 2014 1:48 pm #

        Yeah, in the last book you could do HVC + Strangler, in the book before that you could double up, but they were twin-linked… in this book just a total of one of either.

  11. joedrache January 31, 2014 8:10 am #

    Well, we just had a nid player go undefeated and win a tourney at our FLGS! beating eldar, BA, and iron hands i think. he had a mixed list with a lot of the above. and we are all pretty good players(the eldar guy had won COC(almost) the week before.

    its not over yet.

    i for one, am liking the brood lords horror ability, coupled with deathleaper, you can reliably shut down some units.

    • Reecius January 31, 2014 8:27 am #

      I am glad to hear that some folks are getting it done with the Old Nids.

  12. Jason Brown January 31, 2014 1:29 pm #

    I am running a two dakkaflex brood where each has a stranglethorn and brainleech. Works great and some good pinning action.

    Stone Crusher….where are the rules/points to be found?

  13. Alan January 31, 2014 1:29 pm #

    Hey, you could always play your Tyranids as “counts-as” TauDar! “Yeah, no that harpy is my Riptide and those Gargoyles are Jetbikes!” 😉 The dickish gamer strikes again!

  14. Joons January 31, 2014 1:32 pm #

    Damn it Reece, I’m never going to be able to look at zoanthropes the same way again. I have this mental picture now of a zoan floating after a group of termagants trying to get them back into synapse, all the time yelling “Honey Boo Boo child! You get back here right now!”

    • Reecius January 31, 2014 2:42 pm #

      hahaha, Now that’s stuck in my head, too!

  15. Tangentical February 1, 2014 1:54 am #

    With all the negative talk I’ve actually been considering building a list very similar to list 1. Just one less Flyrant, a Prime and boosting one of the Gant units up in size for Optimist Prime (my name for mister ‘I wanna live’) to sit in.

    P.S. I’m trademarking Optimist Prime for use only with accreditation!

  16. JPong February 1, 2014 5:25 am #

    I have been really mulling over this codex trying to come up with something playable. The problem to solve is the mid-game freeze. Where the army just bunches up turn 3 and 4 in the middle of the board around the remaining synapse. So far the list I came up with is as follows.

    2x Flying Hive Tyrants

    30 gants w 15 devs


    2x tfex w acid spray and eshock grubs.

    3 venomthropes

    2×3 Zoanthropes

    3x biovores

    12x gargs

    The idea being to keep the terv far away from paid gants, but still march everything up the board with the tfexs blocking LOS. Use everything agressively to take my opponent’s objectives. Have spawned gants camp objectives held in synapse by weakened zoanthrope broods mid game.

    • JPong February 1, 2014 7:49 am #

      Make that 15 gargs, I just realized my chicken scratch had an error since I was overcharging on devourer gants.

    • Reecius February 1, 2014 12:24 pm #

      I think you have too many points in Zoens, personally, but otherwise I like that list!

  17. ChaosReigns February 1, 2014 10:12 am #

    Alright, I really want to weigh in here. I haven’t played a serious game against the new book yet, but I’ve watched me some BRs and glanced at the codex so clearly I’m an theory hammer pro.

    I honestly think the minds biggest key to survival is pinning. I know, I know, that’s awful but it’s what I think. I agree double fly rant just isn’t sturdy enough to make a list work but I think a prime in a carnefex brood would be kickin. Warrior broods with a barbed strangler for backfield objectives and babysitting biovores. If the carnifex brood can take pinning templates too, even better. I’d recommend two fexes (that can be kitted for different tooling) for 8 S6 wounds to come before the prime. This means you’re not so much sinking points into wounds as making the carnifex unit your primary synapse. Throw your courant in for HQ2.

    Also, the deathleaper formation for negative leadership buffs to make that pinning oh so glorious. Tired of ethereal leadership bubbles? -D3 that mofo. Plus, lictors for further leadership debuff and somewhat intimidating models that can make it downfield fast. I understand formations are limited at some events, but things to consider.

    Also, the Trygon prime is the only synapse creature that can make it down field safely since it has safe deep strike. It’s a little cheaper in the new book, but not quite as strong so it’s something to consider with a grain of salt but still something to think about.

    People are trying to consider how to keep the bugs alive to make it across table with cover saves and such but it really isn’t viable since most lists of note don’t care about your cover. Venomthropes aren’t bad investments, but you can’t bank on them. Fly rants just die a bit too easy I think and they’re such a crucial piece to lose turn two to a shooty list. I’m interested in your thoughts, Reecius, as I am but a lowly chaos player. However I’ve had A LOT of previous experience against bugs and they’re one of my favorite match ups. A friend of mine who uses the handle Trace of Toxin did a lot with the book in 5th and I always enjoyed our games. I’d hate to lose out on one of my favorite opponents. Good luck on making the book work, sorry for the long post.


    • Reecius February 1, 2014 12:23 pm #

      The only issue with that strategy is that so many armies are fearless. Pinning just isn’t reliable as a lynchpn strategy.

      • Chaos Reigns February 1, 2014 2:50 pm #

        I think there are more armies that ignore cover than are fearless. Daemons are pseudo fearless, but what can you do against screamerstar anyway? Orks have fearless in numbers, but you don’t have to worry about shooting so much with them. Guard have get back in the fight! but that can be skirted by forcing the commanders down if I recall. All marines have their ATSKNF but still get pinned. Only fearless for Eldar are wraith constructs; DE also have limited fearless. Necrons can be pinned, CSMs can be pinned (unless noise marines but then the cover won’t save you eiher). If you get bored, give it a go is all I’m saying. Good luck

        • Reecius February 1, 2014 2:55 pm #

          Oh yeah, definitely worth a try! I wasn’t trying to shoot you down or anything. It’s just that we’ve seen this idea played out many times over the years with sniper armies, etc. and it has never really worked. Can’t hurt to try again.

          • ChaosReigns February 1, 2014 4:37 pm

            I think the deathleaper formation with additional lictors is the only way you could make it feasible. The debuff bubbles the lictors also bring mean your opponent has three other targets they need to put some fire to. However I think the formation has a -3 debuff to pinning rolls overall which is what caught my attention. Anywho, I won’t waste anymore of your time, good luck with the LVO; I await to see some results.

          • Reecius February 2, 2014 5:13 pm

            Not wasting my time at all, I never get tired of talking 40K!

    • Sensei February 3, 2014 9:19 pm #

      I totally agree about the pinning. I don’t think it is something to completely bank on, but I think nids have a lot of pinning ability now and although some of their assault units did not become stronger in the new dex, I think the pinning abilities we have actually make them a little bit more survivable. Yes, there are a lot of fearless units, but if you can force one or two units to be pinned, your opponent isn’t using them to shoot you on their next turn. Stealers don’t have assault grenades, but assaulting a pinned unit means they don’t have the charge through cover penalty. If a broodlord can pin a unit, they are taking less fire in the turn they can’t assault if they outflanked, and infiltrated broods can potentially get early pins to allow the rest of your forces to get a little further across the board.

      I used this list against my brothers chaos marines:

      HQ – Malanthrope

      HQ – Flyrant with Miasma cannon, stranglethorn cannon
      two tyrant guard deployed unattached from the flyrant

      20 termagants – 8 spike rifle, 10 devs, 2 stranglewebs
      20 termagants – 8 spike rifle, 10 devs, 2 stranglewebs
      5 genestealer + broodlord
      5 genestealer + broodlord
      3 warriors – one with barbed strangler, three stock
      4 warriors – one with barbed strangler, three stock

      2 x Zoans

      Fast Attack
      4 shrikes – one with barbed strangler, 3 stock
      10 gargoyles
      Harpy – strnaglethorn cannon

      2 x Biovores
      Carnifex – Stranglethorn

      Granted, this would not be a very good allcomcers list as I have very little AA, but my brother has very few flying units. We both had somewhat tailored lists to fight each other, but mine was more designed to get as much pinning in my army as I could. It worked out alright, even against chaos marines who have a fair number of fearless units. I know this list needs work, but I think I’ve got the basis of a decent army and one that can easily swap out one unit for another: Almost every unit is between 130-150 points so it is very easy to swap things with something else or tweak the numbers in the gant units to spare a few points here or there.

      Again, not a great build if your meta has a lot of fliers, but I have to say the flyrant with the miasma cannon and stranglethorn was pretty awesome. The miasma cannon matched the range of the stranglethorn on his march up the board, and then I was able to get right next to an enemy unit, drop the flame template and a large blast (I scored a direct hit) but didn’t have to worry about scattering onto my flyrant because I was swooping. He wiped a unit of berserkers by doing that.

      Anyways, sorry for the long winded post.

      TLDR – nids have got some decent tactics to limit shooting and get into assault a little easier by using the multitude of pinning options available to them.

      • Sensei February 3, 2014 9:22 pm #

        * both warrior units were 4 model units. Also, the toal list was 2000 points.

  18. ChaosReigns February 1, 2014 10:21 am #

    I apologize my IPad screwing with my spelling. *nids, flyrant as second HQ*

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