Chaos Renegades: Heavy Support Analysis

Hey everyone, it’s Adam from! We are most of the way through the Renegade unit analysis, just 2 sections left to go, Heavy Support and Lords of War! In either Renegades army, the most important slot is the Heavy Support. This is where all the punch for the army lives, and there’s a crap ton to choose from. Be sure to check the Tactics Corner for more great articles!

Heavy Support

A lot of the Renegade heavy support choices are made even better by the fact that BS2 is a mandatory upgrade, so units like Wyverns, Griffons, and Thuddguns can keep the low BS, since they’re twin-linked blasts anyhow, and keep some spare points free for the rest of the army.

Renegade Tank Squadron

Renegade Leman Russ by Gavin Massey

Renegade Leman Russ by Gavin Massey

There are a huge variety of Leman Russes, they all have AV 14/13/10-11, depending on the variant, making them quite tough to kill. As with all the other tanks in the army, they’re 10 points cheaper than what IG pay for them, but are BS2, and can be upgraded to BS3 for that same 10 points. This means that the variants that are less reliant on BS can be kept cheaper if you want to save some points (only useful on blast tanks really, so anything but the Exterminator, Vanquisher, and Punisher). Since they are so diverse, I’m going to talk a little about each one:

  • Leman Russ Battle Tank – Ol’ reliable, a modest price tag for a heavily armoured tank with a S8 AP3 large blast. Definitely a solid choice, but due to it’s ordnance weapon turret, sponsons are going to need to snap shoot. While this is the classic variant, I tend to look for my pie plates elsewhere.
  • Leman Russ Annihilator – This is a Forgeworld Russ variant, and one of the least expensive of all the Russes, with it’s twin-linked lascannon turret, it could make for an interesting alternative for the Vanquisher, but I’m still not a fan. The nice thing is though, if you give it a hull-mounted lascannon and sponson multi-meltas, it can move 6″ and fire everything thanks to being a heavy vehicle, making it potentially a nasty platform for high strength anti-tank weapons.
  • Leman Russ Conqueror – Another Forgeworld Russ variant, this guy has the distinct pleasure of being a fast vehicle… that’s right, AV14/13/10 and still hauling butt. It’s main gun isn’t very powerful, only being a small blast at S7 Ap4, but the idea of AV14 flying across the board is fun at least. Since this is tied with the Eradicator as the cheapest variant, at 110 points, I think it probably still merits some investigation.
  • Leman Russ Exterminator – Probably my favorite variant, the Exterminator is dirt cheap, sporting a nasty 4-shot twin-linked autocannon turret. Always worth the militia trianing for that extra point of BS, slap on a pair of multi-melta sponsons and you have a very cost effecient vehicle that’s great at wrecking light-medium armour. I use mine for hunting transports so that my artillery can shell the unit inside.
  • Leman Russ Vanquisher – A long-necked russ, the Vanquisher’s main gun is a single, very powerful anti-tank shell, but being that, it’s one shot that must roll to-hit. Even with the Militia training, you’re only hitting 50% of the time. Honestly, this is probably the worst variant, I would highly recommend a Rapier Laser Destroyer battery instead.
  • Leman Russ Eradicator – Tied for the cheapest Leman Russ, the Eradicator actually packs an interesting gun, it’s Eradicator nova cannon has a large blast at S6 AP4 that ignores cover. Being on an incredibly cheap AV14 tank, you can take a squad of 3 of these for only 330 points and just pelt away at enemy xenos in cover and take little damage in return. Since the gun isn’t ordnance, you can stack on some extra heavy bolters and still fire all your weapons. They battle over the same role and slot as the Wyvern (which I prefer), but I still think they’re a solid choice.
  • Leman Russ Demolisher – The second classic variant and also the most expensive, brandishing the lovely, and aptly named, Demolisher Cannon. This highly armoured tank packs a mean punch, though in the Renegade army, it can be easily replaced by Medusa’s and other weapons. Due to it’s very high points cost, and inability to fire sponson weapons (well, it can snap fire them), I don’t see it having much game time over an Executioner, or a Medusa heavy artillery carriage.
  • Leman Russ Punisher – Because who doesn’t like gatling guns? With it’s massive amount of dice, even if it’s not that effective in-game, it’s fun to play with. Anti-infantry focused to the extreme with 20 S5 spots, tack on a pair of heavy bolter sponsons and you’re talking 29 shots a turn. Sadly though, while it’s fun to roll a fist full of dice, anti-infantry is something that your other artillery pieces do far better, and for less points.
  • Leman Russ Executioner – The last Russ variant, the Executioner brings a nasty, 3-shot plasma cannon to the board. This variant is fairly expensive, but when it comes to dealing with Terminators and other squads of 2+ infantry, nothing does it better. You can add on 2 more plasma cannon sponsons to really bring the pain. Generally squads of more than 1-2 Executioners are going to really rack up the points, but it may not be bad to hide one in a squad of Eradicators.

Renegade Artillery Battery

Renegade Basilisk by RobSkib

Renegade Basilisk by RobSkib

Now we’re really starting to talk the big guns. Artillery Batteries are squads of Basilisk and Medusa tanks. They’re both decently priced, but restricted by their AV12 front armour from getting anywhere near the action. While I generally like the idea of these squads, I find that the Heavy Ordnance Battery is just a lot better for the points, despite it’s lack of mobility. If I were to take a squad of either of these though, it would be the Medusa variant, because who doesn’t love a 36″ range, S10 Ap2 pie plate?

Renegade Strike Battery

Renegade Wyvern by Majer

Renegade Wyvern by Majer

Everyone’s favorite Imperial Guard tank, only better! These are squads of Griffons and Wyverns, but both at a discount, and in squads of up to 5! No need to pay the 10 points per model for BS3 when your high volume, blast guns are already twin-linked. Naturally a squad of 2-5 Wyverns is the first choice I add to any Renegade army, it’s just a murder fest of artillery shells that will make any infantry on the board soggy in the britches. With Wyverns though, it’s easy to overlook the Griffon tank, which weighs in at a mere 35 points for it’s twin-linked S6 Ap4 large blast, so a full squad of 5 is only 185 points… Seriously, if you have any heavy support slots open in your list, it means you didn’t take enough Strike Batteries, they are so amazingly cheap for what they do on the table.

Renegade Hydra Battery

Renegade Hydra by Stempe

Renegade Hydra by Stempe

Identical to the Astra Militarum variant (with the exception for BS), they bring your only real reliable anti-air. If you find that your meta is full of flyers and skimmers, then this may be an option to help deal with them, but personally, I just accept my fate of getting pummeled by the sky, while I focus on annihilating everything with it’s feet on the ground. If they were a bit cheaper, or their gun was slightly better I’d probably be willing to take a squad, but with the competition in the Heavy Support slot being the roughest in the army, I’ve never even considered taking them.

Renegade Bombard Battery

Bombard by MrP

Bombard by MrP

It’s not every day that you get pie plates that wound most things on a 2+, go through their armour, and ignore cover. Bombards are absolutely devastating against any dug-in infantry, and worthy of consideration, but they will become a top priority for pretty much everyone. They have a massive 24″ minimum range, and must be fired using the Barrage rules, so if the enemy gets too close, they suddenly can’t fire at anything. Additionally, they have pretty poor armour, so anyone who does want to get rid of them, probably can if they’re not well protected and hidden. It might be worth taking just a single one, since it wouldn’t be too hard to hide, just to have something to reach out and wreck far away scoring units.

Renegade Heavy Ordnance Battery

Renegade Basilisk Platform by Rictus

Renegade Basilisk Platform by Rictus

Very similar to the Artillery Battery, the Heavy Ordnance battery is a squad of artillery containing either Basilisk or Medusa heavy carriages. They are incredibly tough since they are artillery and quite inexpensive. By adding on a pile of extra crew, you can quickly have a blob of 36 T7 3+ save wounds sitting in the backfield, shelling your opponent. For their price, they really are an amazing unit, and a great place to hide your Arch Demagogue.

Renegade Support Squad

Renegade Heavy Weapons by Sircyn

Renegade Heavy Weapons by Sircyn

Basically a big squad of Heavy Weapon teams, they can have a lot of weaponry, but their T3 really makes them bait for any S6+ enemy firepower. Sadly, while they are inexpensive, they’re just not resilient enough to be trusted to not get shot at by some scatter lasers and ran off the board.

Renegade Rapier Laser Destroyer Battery

Yes, take them, take many of them. Someone down there must really like us, because Forgeworld has blessed Renegades with one of the nastiest pieces of artillery you can get for basically no points. A full squad of 3, with 3 extra crew and Militia training is just under 80 points, and firing off 3, twin-linked S9 AP1 ordnance (not blast) shots a turn. They are amazing at wrecking anything shy of AV14 from across the board, and even then because of the Ordnance rule, AV14 isn’t off the menu entirely. They don’t have a ton of wounds, only 3 extra when you buy the crew, but for their price they can’t be beat.

Renegade Field Artillery Battery

Last, but definitely not least, is even more Artillery! Renegade field batteries carry either heavy mortars, or the feared thudd gun. Back before there were Wyverns everywhere, these were the bee’s knees, splattering the enemy with 4 S5 blasts a turn per model, and in the renegade army, able to be taken in squads of up to 4, you’re talking 16 blasts a turn from each battery! When taken with the Ordnance Tyrant Arch Demagogue from Vraks, they count as non-compulsory troops choices, but that still means Objective Secured artillery in a normal Combined Arms Detachment. I do love these as a cheaper, tougher alternative to the Wyvern.


The hardest decision you’ll have to make in a Renegade army is how to fill your heavy support choices. It’s entirely possible to just take 9 Rapier Laser batteries, but that’s only going to take up ~240 points in your army, so you’d better have a lot of infantry sitting around! Personally, I take a squad of 3 Exterminators with melta sponsons, a unit of 4 Wyverns, and a squad of 3 Rapiers. It’s all fairly economical for the damage output, and it gives me answers for a variety of targets.

See you next time when we cover Lords of War. Despite only being able to get one in most armies, everything in the Renegades armies are so cheap that it’s almost crazy not to take one.



About Adam

Cofounder of RUMBL – player finder for Miniatures Wargames. I also run a little blog called TheDiceAbide, check it out.

7 Responses to “Chaos Renegades: Heavy Support Analysis”

  1. JM July 20, 2015 10:55 am #

    The Renegades get better equipment than imperials. The rapiers are AP1 vs. AP2 and the Thudd guns cause pinning, while the FW lacks pinning (since Barrage no longer implicitly pins).

    Unfortunately, the Renegades don’t have access to cheap Psykers like AM to give prescience to LR executioners or Punishers squadrons, otherwise they would be superb choices

    HWT are especially disappointing considering they don’t get orders and compete in the most crowded slot. If they were optional for platoons (like AM) they would be worthwhile simply because they are so cheap and militia training is for the whole squad, not per unit. An annihilator with a lascannon and MM sponsons only runs 160 for some serious anti-tank shooting, but it twice what a rapier battery costs.

    I think you can safely ignore flying vehicles, but not FMCs. They’re one of the most effective ways of removing the artillery units. So far that seems to be my primary weakness – how to handle 3 to 5 FMCs,especially psykers or flyrants. Allies and fortifications (firestorm redoubt?) may be a must, but Hyrda’s aren’t even an option.

    I think for a follow up article it would be worth talking about what armies are the best allies for Renegades. I have a hard time filling out points for Renegade only armies. Naturally, people think of CSM, but I’m not sure they bring a lot.Drop pod marines, necrons, and deep striking daemons may be much better,

    • W July 22, 2015 12:14 am #

      Actually, in the Siege of Vraks book there is a difference between a Laser Destroyer (ap1) and a laser destroyer array (ap2). IA:13 doesnt have a specific listing for the array, so it’s a weird situation where your Vraks renegades are ap2, but the IA:13 guys can’t be expected to use the differing stats from another book.

  2. marandamir July 20, 2015 4:05 pm #

    I never have played Forgeworld and I picked up IA13 because I wanted to see how traitor guard worked. I’m sure its my ignorance but I am puzzled that not all the guns in the book are listed in the index. Like the warhound titan has a few gun options that i cannot find stats for them anywhere. Am I missing something in the book or are they are referenced in other books?

    • ryanl July 21, 2015 12:04 am #

      Yeah, not all the weapons are listed. They’re spread around in various IA books, Apocolypse and Codexes unfortunately. The weapon rules can also be inconsistent between publications, I think I’ve seen 2 or 3 versions/interpretations of the Ogryn Laser cutter…

    • Andrew July 21, 2015 12:19 pm #

      I think most of them are referenced in the Apocalypse book.

  3. Majere613 July 21, 2015 2:58 am #

    Nice to see Creeping Death up there! I was going to make more for the battery, but one seems to annoy people so much that it would feel a bit cheeky.

    As a matter of interest, where do you get the S7 AP4 for the Conqueror Cannon from? It’s not listed in IA13, and the only profile I could find was S8 AP3. Is it in the new Vraks book?

    I’d been wanting to try Conquerors out, but my current favorite is the Demolisher. Three in a squadron is very intimidating and the BS2 is almost a bonus since there’s few targets you need to hit bang on with three Demolishers anyway. I like to go with Heavy Flamers on the hull and sponsons since it gives cheap protection against Weapon Destroyed hits and gives you another option if things get a bit too intimate for the main guns.

    • JM July 23, 2015 12:11 pm #

      Most of the missing weapon profiles are in IA1 2nd edition.

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