40K Tactics: The Summoning!


Most interesting man in 40k

Hello, everyone, Frankie here to talk to you about my new list for the next round of tournaments: The Daemon Summoning.

So I am sure many of you have been seeing summoning armies at tournaments but most of the time, they aren’t used very well. I have seen Eldar summoning, Grey Knight summoning and mild Daemon lists with summoning. I believe that if you take Daemons and maximize the summoning, it will become the best list around. It is so versatile and puts points on the table you didnt start with. Anyways, lets go over the list first:



Hearld of Tzeentch (Level 3) (Exalted Gift)

Hearld of Tzeentch (Level 3) (Exalted Gift)

Hearld of Tzeentch (Level 3)

Hearld of Tzeentch (Level 3)



Pink Horror of Tzeentch x 12

Pink Horror of Tzeentch x 12

Pink Horror of Tzeentch x 12

Pink Horror of Tzeentch x 12

Cultist x 10

Fast Attack

Helldrake (Flame)

So, starting out with this Daemon list you have 27 warp charge. That is enough to shut down almost any power that your opponent throws. It is also for sure enough to cast the main power, Summoning, 5 times. The power allows you to bring on a unit of 10 Bloodletters of Khorne, Pink Horrors of Tzeentch, Plaguebearers of Nurgle, or Daemonettes of Slaanesh. You can also summon either a 5 man unit of Flesh Hounds, 3 Flamers of Tzeentch, 3 Nurglings, or 5 Seekers. Wow, that is a lot of choices from one power! Oh and let’s not forget you get to upgrade each unit with a banner and a musician and even a character if you have the option. Another cool thing about the banner is as long as you summon another unit within 6″ of it and they share the same mark then the new unit ddoesn’t scatter. This is why this army is so good, you just added 105- 125 points to the table for each successful summon.

cursed earth

 Now their are other powers you have at disposal with this list. Cursed Earth which gives all Daemon units within 12″ +1 invulnerable save and any Daemons that are Deepstriking will not scatter.


Sacrifice which allows you to create a Hearld of Tzeentch, Hearld of Nurgle, Hearld of Slaanesh or a Hearld of Khorne. At the cost of doing on wound to a model in the unit.

images (1)

 Incursion which summons a unit or 3 Blood Crushers, Screamers of Tzeentch, Plague Drones, or Fiends of Slaanesh within 12″ of the caster.


Last but not least we have Possession which creates 1 Bloodthirster, Lord of Change, Great Unclean one, or Keeper of Secrets at the cost of a Hearld or Horror unit.

These powers are what the list depends on. Most of the game I will be summoning Daemonette units, hopefully 4-5 times a turn. I will be using Be’lakor and Fateweaver as free safties in the backfield. If I am playing against an Imperial knight I could summon Screamers of Tzeenth or if I am playing against a lot of fliers I could summon a Lord of Change with the Tzeentch shooting powers. The list just has so many different answers for each list I play against and the best part is you don’t have to decide what to do till you see the enemy list.

swiss army knife

I am excited to see how this list does this weekend at Brawl in the Fall and Feast of blades the following weekend. Let me know what kind of lists I would have trouble with and if you guys think this list will be any good. Don’t forget to remember the general of the army is the greatest 40k player in the world so its almost a given that the list is great.


About White925

Frankie is the greatest 40K player on the planet. Nuff Said.

42 Responses to “40K Tactics: The Summoning!”

  1. Avatar
    Timatron October 2, 2014 4:24 pm #

    Weirdly, I just messaged Reecius with a concept for my own Summon list an hour or so before I saw this, great minds must really think alike, eh Frankie? Anyway, I like the list, you’ve really gone balls-deep to get the Warp charges! I have opted for a more fluffy, Tzeentch flavour to my list, with more units on the table that can actually do stuff other than summon, like a ‘mini Screamer star’ and some min units of Flamers to grab objectives. As Reece said to me earlier, the main issue is getting the game done on time. Good luck, let us know how you get on at the event. Here’s the link to my list, btw: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0ArHWH0zsTkXldGJvNHBFR0F0VUdKR0NUMTBKZ0RNTUE&usp=drive_web#gid=0

    • Avatar
      White925 October 2, 2014 5:36 pm #

      I for sure will let you know how it goes.

  2. Avatar
    Novastar October 2, 2014 4:42 pm #

    Grey knights can’t use the summoning spells as they don’t get access to maleific powers

    • Avatar
      White925 October 2, 2014 5:35 pm #

      Eh youre right maybe it was something else haha

      • Avatar
        Umbo October 2, 2014 7:05 pm #

        it was the Inquisition and me…

  3. Avatar
    dr.insanotron October 2, 2014 5:36 pm #

    My biggest problem with lists like this is there lack off teeth. It has no real offensive power unless it can manage to summon it, but even then its in limited numbers

    • Avatar
      Cilithan October 3, 2014 12:13 am #

      Thats why I think a variation on this theme with more teeth is more viable. Alexander Fennel played a variant at NOVA.

      My take would be:

      HoT, Disc, ML3
      HoT, Disc, ML3
      11 Pink Horrors
      3 Nurglings
      15 Fleshhounds
      8 Screamers
      DPoT, Wings/Armour, ER (Grimnoire), LR (Staff), ML3

      Sorcerer, Bike, ML3, Meltabombs
      10 Cultists
      5 Spawn, MoN


      Still 18 ML. Enough to summon two to three units and one or two buffs. But it forces your opponent to deal with a lot of fast, resillient,and quite dangerous forward threats.

      • Avatar
        Dr.insanotron October 3, 2014 7:29 am #

        I like this list but I do think Be’lakor would be a better bit then the Deamon Prince

    • Avatar
      Cilithan October 3, 2014 3:47 am #

      This is why I think that ‘Summon while you rush’m’ lists like Alexander Fennels NOVA list are a better tournament list than an all round summonspam variant.

      Something like:
      HoT,ML3, Disc
      HoT,ML3, Disc
      Sorcerer, Bike, ML3,SF, MB
      11 Pink Horrors
      3 Nurglings
      10 Cultists
      5 Spawn, MoN
      15 Fleshhounds
      8 Screamers
      DPoT, W/A, ER, LR, ML3

  4. Avatar
    Pascal Roggen October 2, 2014 6:01 pm #

    I have a a feeling you might be bored and disappointed by the end of the tourney:P.
    the moment you go up against a big alpha strike list and lose first turn, or you go up against a big gun line it’s going to get really nasty, 6 wyverns alone will do a number on this list.

    But please, play it and throw us some reports on how it does, everyone wants to see it:)…albeit maybe only once;P

    • Avatar
      White925 October 3, 2014 6:44 am #

      Thank goodness no one plays 6 wyverns haha and daemons are pretty hard to kill. Well see how it does.

  5. Avatar
    Asmeralda October 2, 2014 6:17 pm #

    I have recently started to experiment with a 2000 point list for local play and one of the units I am using to provide utility is the soul grinder with the Nurgle upgrade. The grinder provides anti-air and threatens units through both shooting and close combat. My list calls for 2 of them. If you give your opponents something else to worry about then that takes some pressure off your summoning units.

  6. Avatar
    Julio Rodriguez October 2, 2014 8:47 pm #

    Round 2 is Purge the Alien in the Primary mission. I think that’s the hardest one for you. I wonder if you will be summoning in that mission.

  7. Avatar
    iNcontroL October 2, 2014 10:07 pm #

    faced frankie’s list.. was pretty damn savage. Really well rounded and has tools for everything.

  8. jy2
    jy2 October 2, 2014 11:18 pm #

    I’d like to see if any of your matches reaches to Turn 4.

    • Avatar
      White925 October 3, 2014 6:45 am #

      Luckily I’m a fast player so time won’t be an issue.

  9. Avatar
    Black Blow Fly October 3, 2014 12:31 am #

    There was a good article by Nick Navanti on ToF about the same subject. He’s a top daemon player and his conclusion is the army will eventually fall flat.

  10. Avatar
    Fagerlund October 3, 2014 12:45 am #

    How do you protect your Tzeralds? How do you deal with Wave Serpents? How do you deal with Three+Three Knights? How do you deal with Tripple Riptide taking first turn? How do you deal with Daemonette hordes? How do you deal with hordes overall actually? Basically you have no offense turn 1 unless you go first, and even if you do go first your offense is tiny. If you get the summoning rolling, then yes it will be hard to deal with but there are so many lists out there that will strike you before you get the chance. I think summoning is best used in a support role, aiming for 2-3 summons per turn.

    • Avatar
      bigpig October 3, 2014 12:51 am #

      Sadly, everything in 40k now is rock/paper/scissors. I think the day of the take all comers list might be long gone. Let’s see some practice by the GREATEST 40k gamer in the world to see how it shakes out 🙂

      Cya at BitF buddy 🙂

      • Avatar
        Fagerlund October 3, 2014 3:18 am #

        Yes TAC is dead and gone for sure. That’s why you need a list that deals with the top dog in your meta. In this case, probably Serpent spam. But Knights are another one of those big things that will ruin this lists day. Be’lakor can take care of one Knight by himself… but summoning 3 Screamers won’t do much, even i several squads. They’ll just die to instability.

        Here’s another one: How do you deal with Drop pods? Centurion Star in a pod and bye bye Tzeralds, and that’s all of your effective summoning gone since neither Fateweaver nor Be’lakor can summon.

        I think for four Tzeralds to be effective they need to be protected by being in a durable unit. Screamers for example. Incidentily that also helps with the anti-armour department. On the downside, if you only have one scary unit it will get pounded early… so it needs protection in numbers. And this is where the summoning start to crumble, because suddenly your points have run out. So aiming for two units per turn while having a solid list that puts up a threat without summoning seems a lot more reliable.
        But yeah, I’m interested to see Frankie play it in action. Hopefully against good opponents. I’m sure he will pull it off a lot of times, but I don’t see this army as a top-contender in a big tournament.

  11. Avatar
    Julio Rodriguez October 3, 2014 12:53 am #

    I just wanna know if were all getting drunk Saturday night. Frankie? Yes? Yes?

  12. Avatar
    jamie October 3, 2014 12:58 am #

    I think the list will be a lot harder to run as soon as tournaments introduce limits of the psychic phase

    how would you deal with only being able to use a set amount like 15 dice for summoning ?

    • Avatar
      Moridan October 3, 2014 3:43 am #

      If tournaments havent already put a cap on psychic-phase dice, do you really think they will start now? I doubt it. They likely realized that a pure summoning list is just another player in the rock/paper/scissors game. Will do good against some opponents, but will get toasted by others.

  13. Avatar
    rexscarlet October 3, 2014 4:18 am #

    Looks “Fun” and that is the point of playing 40K after all (and “relaxing” lol, in your free time)
    Winning the War of Attrition because of your turn time will make a tournament opponent mad, so watch that, but other than that, go crazy!
    I am scratch-building eight Rune-Priests in Terminator Armor for a fun standard “Bound” list.
    Many Veteran players run crazy and fun lists, examples;
    All Ork Boyz and nothing else; maximum rokkits, Knob powerfist, and in those dayZ Ghazghkull; magnets on bottoms of bases, small sheet metal pieces from Lowe’s near the chimney section to move things along faster (because he was considerate).
    All the vehicles you own, yes, even Rhinos, and minimum troops/infantry, your opponent has a ton of fun.
    Court of the Young Prince? Avatar and all the Phoenix Lords, was crazy fun, every time we killed one we all rejoiced!
    As many Kroot as Possible (40+ was the list). This was more effective than I thought it would be.
    But alas, with the Three Knights “minimum” on the tables now, these lists are fewer and farther between than they used to be.

  14. Avatar
    Leth October 3, 2014 4:59 am #

    I think it will be powerful, however it will have difficulties running into Alpha Strike lists where you need to hide your MCs off the table, or that can widdle down your horrors units relatively quickly.

    The other issue will be time, especially since I see many tournaments punishing you for not reaching a certain turn. I could see many an opponent pointing to your list as taking too much time unfairly.

    All in all it will be powerful against many armies, but I dont think it will be very fun to play/play against but that is just my opinion.

  15. Avatar
    Bassface October 3, 2014 6:01 am #

    Summoning 5 units a turn is going to take freaking ages. You’re a cool guy Frankie but this list just looks like its going to piss off anyone you play against – just because it’s going to take so long to summon all these damn units every turn, not to mention having to move, shoot and assault with the extra 600odd points you’re adding (each turn).

  16. Avatar
    DCannon4Life October 3, 2014 6:46 am #

    Might not be a major factor, but have you considered the potential impact of a Culexis Assassin?

    • Avatar
      droozy October 3, 2014 9:29 am #

      Seems this list has a built in Culexis counter: there’s just too many units that can get off the necessary powers, the Culexis bubble can only cover so much ground, this army can spread out and keep the summoning going

  17. Avatar
    iNcontroL October 3, 2014 9:05 am #

    Alpha strike is worrisome yes but he hides those heralds in packs of pink anyways and they will start in ruins or best cover possible. Unless this alpha strike never misses and always wounds he is going to come out of it ok for the most part. Once he starts summoning he gets the tools he needs.. Belakor against pods would be disguisting btw… he would be killing a pack of marines a turn and casting invisibility + someone would get the grimoir etc..

    Culexis could be trouble if it gets there for 1 round but then it dies after that 1 round no matter what.

    His biggest challenge is going to be kill points. His army has some nasty punch to it but it will produce a LOT more than what the punch can do potentially.. that will be the true test imo.

    • Avatar
      Jural October 3, 2014 10:02 am #

      What he loses in kill points he’ll make up for in Maelstorm and objectives most of the time, I’d guess. So 1/3 games would be a challenge against the wrong match-up? Meh, what list doesn’t have that kind of draw back?

      I think it would be fun, but would hate to go up against someone slow playing this in a tournament with my nids… I think I would almost always be behind in turn 2, and that might be where it ends due to time!

  18. Avatar
    DCannon4Life October 3, 2014 11:02 am #

    Admittedly, the potential effectiveness of the Culexis is tied to it’s Allies (and the available terrain). Still, it has a 24″ diameter bubble that sucks up warp charges and he removes all blessings (and maledictions) from everything inside that same bubble.

    Even assuming he only gets access to a third of the warp charges in the list + 2 more, that’s 11 S5 AP1 shots during the Psychic Phase. That’s a thing, I think.

  19. Avatar
    nowegian77 October 3, 2014 11:08 am #

    Have fun buying all those models!

  20. Avatar
    Ian Johnson October 3, 2014 12:49 pm #

    You’re not going to be summoning 4-5 units a turn. If you throw 6 dice at summoning you have around a 65% chance to pass it. Go look at 40k.daemons.blogspot. Kevin knows his daemons and he runs the rush/summoning type list that is far more viable then going all in on summoning.

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 3, 2014 1:46 pm #

      5 dice is 50% for a WC2 power.

      • Avatar
        Japatoes October 3, 2014 6:59 pm #

        Summoning is a WC 3 power.

        • Reecius
          Reecius October 4, 2014 8:22 am #

          Oh right, lol! But the math is accurate.

      • Avatar
        Jural October 6, 2014 6:38 pm #

        Just to clarify- throwing 5 die at a WC 3 power gives a 50% chance. Throwing 5 dice at a WC 2 power gives an 80% chance.

        (it wasn’t clear to me which math you were saying was right 😉 )

  21. Avatar
    Wit October 3, 2014 3:22 pm #

    Am I the only one who thinks this list looks terribly unfun to play against? It brings back visions of 3+ Tervigon armies, which were some of the most terrible, boring, frustrating games I’ve played. Heck, if someone sprang this list on me without warning, I’d be hard tempted to just walk out. And the slow-play nature of it means it’s definitely a zero-comp and a sportsmanship ding.

  22. James Carmona
    kontraktkiller October 3, 2014 6:32 pm #


    Fateweaver (warlord)
    Nurglings x2
    Daemon Prince of Tzeentch, ML3. 2 greaters wings NO ARMOR
    15 Hounds


    Herald of Tzeentch ML3 Exalted Reward Locus
    Herald of Tzeentch ML3 Exalted Reward
    Herald of Khorne Juggernaut Greater Locus Lesser Reward
    Pink Horrors x 16
    19 warp charges. lots of durability and bite.

    Throw the grimoire on the Horrors and Heralds to give you a really resilient back field objective scorer that can cast buffs and debuffs Go 2 rolls in div, 1 in malefic for each herald.

    HoK goes with the dogs. you can cast misfortune on knights from the pinkstar unit and charge them with the dogs to surprise your opponent with a possible 60 S5 rending attacks from the dogs alone.

    Belakor can fly or glide with fateweaver and the demon prince and cast shrouding for a 2+ rerollable cover save. invis can be cast on the dogs to avoid being templated. Fateweaver can also use his tzeentch psychic shooting before knights can put their shields up. the daemon prince can cast his summoning wherever units are needed.

    Nurglings infiltrate onto objectives and laugh at all shooting that doesn’t ignore cover.

    • Avatar
      Nowegian77 October 4, 2014 2:29 pm #

      You can’t do the multiple herald HQ if they are the secondary. This only works with double CAD, which I didn’t think tourneys were allowing.

      • Avatar
        Dude_I_Suck October 5, 2014 8:48 am #

        You can, they FAQ’d that you can once 8th hit. They removed the word “primary” from that section in the codex.

  23. James Carmona
    kontraktkiller October 3, 2014 6:38 pm #

    oh and the culexus assassin can be somewhat mitigated by moving away from him to get out of his AOE and casting incursion to utilize the screamers slash attacks during their turbo boost.

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