Archon Timatron (Timothy Kaye) brings us some thoughts on the Haemonculus Coven!
So, we’ve all seen the awesome formations and the cool detachment available in the new Covens supplement, but have we all considered how the alternate Power From Pain table can be used to buff the basic units from the main Codex?
The Haemonculus is the only HQ choice available to the Covens supplement, apart from Urien Rakarth, so, what exactly can he bring to Warriors and Wyches for my fellow Archons and Succubi? Well, he always boosts any unit he joins one turn further up the Power From Pain table, so gives a Turn 1 FNP 6+ to the Troops he joins, for starters. It’s when we consider that, having been chosen from the Covens Supplement, he himself uses the alternate table from that book, that the real hotness starts to emerge.
The first benefit the Haemie gets is Fearless. As he gets the Master Of Pain benefit regardless of which table he is using, he will have the Fearless special rule from the very start of the game. Now, here’s the kicker: Fearless confers to the unit he joins. By the way, did I mention that we can take 2-6 Haemies from the Covens Supplement? Are you starting to feel that tingle? As the turns go on it just gets better and better. Turn 2 all the Wyches, let’s say, in his unit have FNP and by Turn 3 they also have Furious Charge, while the Haemie himself now has Fearless, Fear and It Will Not Die. By Turn 4 the Haemie is also a Zealot, conferring those toasty-warm re-rolls to his entire unit.
But wait, I hear you say, a Haemonculus is not Fleet and therefore will slow down whichever unit he’s been joined to, surely? Not at all. You see, the Covens Supplement has us nicely covered there too; Syndriq’s Sump. This nifty, and suitably gross, add-on allows the bearer to pick one special rule per turn. You can get Poisoned (4+) attacks, It Will Not Die, Rampage or, yes, you guessed it, Fleet! So, the ring of fire is complete. You have a unit with a steadily increasing survivability, that will never run away, that get’s more powerful in combat as the turns progress. All due to the addition of a character from the Covens Supplement. Let’s not forget also, a Haemie can take loads of upgrades to tailor his role, including a Webway Portal for no-scatter deep-strike shenanigans if you’re so inclined.
So, for all those who have been wondering how to make some of the more fragile units from the main Dark Eldar Codex more survivable, here’s your answer. It could be useful to so many units in the army, although Wyches are the most obvious beneficiaries here, of course. The strangest thing to consider, to me anyway, is this: what other possible purpose could a Haemie’s ability to gain Fleet have been intended to be put to? After all, no Coven units have Fleet, and it doesn’t confer to other units. Seems that G.W. put a 10 point upgrade in there that only has any effect if you slide him across to a Kabal or Cult unit, leading me to conclude that this was intended. After all, Haemies were often used to buff other units in this way in the previous Codex, and making them Fearless certainly fits the fluff, as Haemonculi hold the key to Dark Eldar’s regeneration processes.
All in all, I’m loving this update to the true kin and wondering what other combos might come to light after further study. Please, come and comment on my Archon Timatron Facebook page and Youtube channel and let me know if you find any. Just pray I don’t take you alive!