40k Deep Thought: Can an army be both fun, thematic and good?

thinking man

In these heady days of 7th ed, it can be easy to get discouraged with the uber insanity of some of what is out there. Is it really possible to bring an army that makes a nod to the fluff, is fun and wins more than it loses?

mary poppins

I find that if you take the Marry Poppins approach, you can have a fun list that plays well and doesn’t break the lore of the game. What I mean by that is if you mix in a spoonful of sugar to help the medicine go down, or enough powerful units into a list to give it some real teeth that compliment one another, and then mold a theme and some fun units around that hard core, you have a winner.


For example, you want to play Astra Militarum (who have a rep for being weak, which blows me away, they have all the tools you need to win games). You decide you really want a mixed arms army, with tanks, airpower, mobility, and some ground pounding infantry with artillery support, maybe even some fun Elites choices you rarely see with AM such as abhuman units, too?! Well, you can have those things in a list that still wins more games than it loses and is fun in the process.


First, identify the units in your faction that really pack a wallop. For AM, you have the very powerful Leman Russ Executioner with Plasma Sponsons. 5 Plasma Cannon shots on an AV14/13/11 platform is no joke. Anything on the ground besides heavy vehicles or units with very high invul or cover saves will fear these bad boys. Two of them is seriously savage firepower, particularly with all of the Space Marine Battle Companies running around. Now, the trick here, is to prevent them from killing themselves with Gets Hot! (such a silly rule). You need to let them reroll those 1’s, and you can get that with a fortification that also provides you with protection from some of the nastiest weapons on the table at present: Grav Weapons. The Void Shield Generator with an Ammunition Dump serves very well (Edit: the VSG cannot take the Ammunition Dump upgrade, my mistake.). Units within 2″ of the Ammo Dump reroll 1’s, which helps avoid those silly Get’s Hot! rolls.

Another great choice is a Punisher with Multi Melta sponsons as that gives you a versatile tank that can threaten both infantry and armor. One of each serves me well in my games.


And what would AM be without some big guns in the backfield?! One of the best tools for artillery support is the Wyvern, as we all know, but the Manticore is still great for taking out things like Knights and Xenos infantry who typically have a lower armor save. However, my personal favorite is a battery of Earthshaker Heavy Artillery. Why? Unlike vehicles they are very hard to kill in a single shot, and with T7 vs. shooting and 6+ wounds per gun (with the crew) you have a very durable unit. Best of all, the unit can receive orders! Ignores Cover is beastly on this unit, launching up to 3 Strength 9, ap3 large blasts downfield. This gives you the tools to deal with many of the very high cover save units out there in the game, plus Knights as barrage weapons ignore their Ion shields. But also, Split Fire is a great order here, too, allowing you to blast multiple units if needs be.


My choice to attach to a unit like this is the man himself, Yarrick. He’s an incredible Warlord as he can hide in a unit, issues orders, stops morale checks form shooting casualties, fights decently well in melee and gets back up on a 3+ if killed! What more could a plucky Guardsman ask for?


Air power helps a ton for both mobility and firepower. A great 1-2 combo is a Vulture with Punishers and a Vendetta. The Vulture, besides being a dead sexy vehicle, is death on wings. Av12/12/10, vector dancer and 23 strength 5 shots is beastly. The Vendetta gives you some nice twin linked las cannons but also, is an air-taxi for a scoring unit as AM can often struggle with mobility issues. My favorite is a Platoon Command Squad with no upgrades, they sit in the Vendetta till turn 5 and then jump out onto an objective. They’ve won me the game on many an occasion with just that maneuver!

Speaking of infantry, an AM list without some ground pounders would just be silly. A PCS as mentioned above to ride in the Vendetta, and 2 units of Infantry, each with an Auto Cannon and sometimes Flamer (my preferred loud-out). The Platoon Squads typically blob up and take Yarrick’s second order, but can also run solo to go grab objectives as the mission requires. They also provide valuable filler to keep units from entering into the protective cover of your VSG.


I also love taking a unit of Conscripts. They are very true to the AM fluff and the Grim Dark in general (when the man next to you dies, pick up his rifle and continue the fight!) and I find them to actually be an incredibly useful unit for winning missions. For 60 points you get 20 bodies, add in another 25 points and you get a Priest, which is arguably the best unit in the game for its price tag. That’s a fearless ObSec unit that no one wants to waste shots on, but that serves so many important board control functions, can tarpit, and goes and scores objectives. Really, a fantastic unit for such a low points investment.

Lastly, in the troop department I love a unit of Vets. Depending on how you structure your list, I like to give them Shotguns, dual Melta with a Heavy Flamer in a Taurox, but you can give them a Las Cannon and some Plasma, stick them on a home objective and let them shoot away, too (preferably near the Ammunition Dump to avoid Gets Hot!). Also, I have had success just running them with 3 Grenade Launchers and a Melta Bomb. Cheap, effective skirmishers that run up field to grab objectives.


For a fun, and fairly effective unit to spice it up, I like a minimum sized unit of Ogryn with a Priest. You get a really enjoyable unit to play that is Fearless, shoots OK, fights well against things that aren’t amazing in melee, and is great for going up field to take objectives. Plus, who doesn’t love seeing Ogryn on the field?! Yes sir, boss, sir!

To round things out and give you some much needed utility, the ubiquitous Inquisitor with Servo Skulls helps AM a lot to keep some of the nasty infiltrating and scouting units out there at bay. You can sink him in the blob squad to boost their leadership, of you can give him some cool kit like the Liber Heresius to provide a ton of utility for another unit, such as the ability to Scout, etc. Also, consider investing in some of their specialty grenades as they’re extremely powerful.


Lastly, my man,  the Culexus Assassin. He was authorized for use by the Inquisitor (of course!), but provides critical utility for stopping some of the really nuts psychic powers out there. My Culexus has solo’d entire Centstars on multiple occasions, including Draigo. Units that provide a lot of trouble for AM get stopped dead in their tracks by him if he is used well. I cannot recommend him enough. Death to Deathstars!! =P

Well there you have. A list that (IMO) gives you an effective army that is fun to play, fun to play against, and also feels true to the fluff. What do you all think?


About Reecius

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

56 Responses to “40k Deep Thought: Can an army be both fun, thematic and good?”

  1. Avatar
    Loopy October 16, 2015 8:47 am #

    This is my goal with EVERY list I make, though I don’t always succeed. I’m working on a Daemonkin army right now using Ork models that I’m trying to build competitively. Expect a list for review from me sometime this week. I could use a little help with tying up the last 300 points or so.

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 16, 2015 9:02 am #

      That sounds awesome, buddy!

  2. Avatar
    Pete October 16, 2015 8:55 am #

    I keep trying to bring a fluffy daemon army that is lead by a rogue heretical inquisitor and her devilish retinue complete with daemon hosts, but no one lets me play it because they don’t like CtA. Sad Panda

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 16, 2015 9:25 am #

      Themed CtA armies are very cool, and it stinks the baby got thrown out with the bathwater in some circumstances. But, to be fair, Inquis+Daemons provides for mega powerful combos in the game, too, which make people’s lore brains melt, lol.

      • Avatar
        JM October 16, 2015 11:39 am #

        As someone with large armies of both daemons and inquisition. I don’t see these mega-powerful combinations that you speak of.

      • Avatar
        Pete October 17, 2015 9:19 am #

        Not picking a fight, but I am scratching my brain to figure out what these mega powerful combos are. I’ve used a stock inquisitor with servo skulls to prevent scouting, but frankly that’s no powerful than doing the same with any other army. Inquisitorial henchmen are more fluffy than anything, and landraiders are all ready available to bloodletters now. 25 pt psychic dice are already available in numerous forms, and since elites in Inquisition aren’t ob sex you can’t spam 9 point OS units. Perhaps you can let me in on your thinking about what is “mega powerful” about Inquis+Daemons?

  3. Avatar
    Bryan October 16, 2015 9:23 am #

    Without a theme, I can’t motivate myself to buy, assemble and paint. Picturing a death star unit made of all kinds of shenanigans and allies just does not “do it” for me.

    Without a competitive edge I can’t motivate myself to buy, assemble and paint..

    I was a 3rd edition baby though, so that may explain my stance! Rhino rush and the csm 3.5 codex. Those were the days.

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 16, 2015 9:24 am #

      Same for me. I want an army that is challenging to play, has a lot of synergy, is fun, different and has a theme…so, not much to ask, lol! But those are the necessary qualities for me to get excited about an army.

  4. Avatar
    Bellerah October 16, 2015 9:28 am #

    It is not possible to to make all of the people happy. so in any given game, 50% of the participants lose. that is ok, but as a game group gets more and more competitive, how many people really have fun losing. The answer is not that many people. This is a major reason many youth events have stopped keeping score, so the winner and loser is removed.

    Being competitive in a loss makes one feel better, but the morale victory only lasts so long. if I lose 17 straight games but am “competitive” by the end i am not having fun.

    So given this, winning is probably the most important element to having a good time. you don’t see a lot of 3-0 players rage quitting.

    So as you start adding other restrictions such as theme to your army construction, you do start taking away from the winning amount and will on some level lower the over all fun.

    now there will be individuals that claim that this is not important to them, and some will be honest, but will be lying to themselves.

    In closing, no you can not have it all and maximize Fun units, as winning is too big a component of fun for the average player at this point

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 16, 2015 9:37 am #

      I agree with you to a point. If you never win with a list, it won’t be fun to play. But, with some of my armies, I play them for the challenge and that is very engaging and fun to me and so long as I stand to win more games than I lose, I am cool with it. For example, I never expect to go undefeated with my Orks. I expect to go 4-5 or 3-5 at a GT with them, or 2-3 at an RTT and typically, that is exactly what I get. I still have a great time as I relish playing the game on hard mode and find that to be more satisfying than bringing a hammer list and smashing everyone.

      So, I think you are right in that a list needs to be competitive to be fun, but, how that is defined varies form person to person.

      • Avatar
        Jural October 16, 2015 10:46 am #

        Fluffy lists are definitely either for people who don’t enjoy winning, or who are very good at the game and want a challenge. The rest of the world will just be frustrated by them.

        Just look at your list Reece- You say it has all the tools, but if someone can’t use terrain and is bad at setting up, his artillery will be useless and so will his Culexus. If he has bad target priority besides he will get stomped.

        Now that same guy takes Steve Sisk;s Superfriends list? With a practice game or two he probably wins as many as he loses. That same guy takes Battle Company? He probably wins as many as he loses.

        Bottom line- tools are useless if someone only knows how to use a nerf bat (on himself.)

        • Reecius
          Reecius October 16, 2015 11:08 am #

          Yeah, very good points, Jural. Your skill level and experience with the game determines a lot.

    • Avatar
      Arrias October 16, 2015 10:14 am #

      This is why I’ve shifted my view on “winning”. Instead of my primary goal and source of enjoyment being the big W, I’ve moved it to a secondary or even tertiary position. My primary goal at this point is to look across the table at my opponent, and bloody his nose something good. If I can end the game and walk away with at least one good story, or maybe give my opponent some ptsd with a unit he never expected, I’ve had a great game. With my tau, this is usually trying to get a delicious shooting phase with my dual-flamer crisis team (current record: 56 hits combined on 10 guardsmen and 2 plague zombies… off a deepstrike) or drowning something in dice with my two double burst cannon crisis teams and (hopefully) leaving a smoking crater. With my Tyranids, I want to slam my claw-fexes into some metal box and get out all the juicy biomass inside, or hit a troop squad with a full brood of toxin laden hormogaunts.

      Yeah, I still like to win, I still try to win, and, when the stars align and that actually happens it’s a nice bonus, but I couldn’t play this game if the win was the only way I could enjoy the hobby.

      • Reecius
        Reecius October 16, 2015 11:09 am #

        The thing is too, when you adopt this mentality, you relax and I believe, have more fun in the process.

  5. Avatar
    Bellerah October 16, 2015 9:54 am #

    You must agree with me on all points!!

    But as a high level player, you can have the choice to win, but decide you want the challenge and bring something else.

    Myself as a middling player, I have to bring everything I can, the most optimized list I can, practiced as much as I can, to eek out a 5-3 record.

    So on a micro level, an individual can definitely maximize fun with a competitive but themed list that suits there playstyle, but on the macro level when looking at 100’s of players, I dont think this holds up, as the ruleset just has too much variance and the gap ends up too big.

    If I was to take your themed orks after some practice, I would go -1 and 9 at a GT 🙁

    • Avatar
      Jural October 16, 2015 10:46 am #

      I think we can all agree that Bellerah thinks he is right. And that more wraiths is always a good call.

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 16, 2015 11:10 am #

      -1 and 9, lol, haha.

      You make good points, on a broader level, most folks will gravitate towards what they think will increase their odds of victory and therefore, fun. And, this hold true in reality, too. “Net Lists” are a thing for a reason.

      • Avatar
        Hotsauceman1 October 16, 2015 11:48 pm #

        I have been under the opinion true netlists are dead. You no longer see people just buy what they see online. Mosts list still have flavor

  6. Avatar
    Jax October 16, 2015 10:21 am #

    What models did you use for the imperial guard infantry in the orange suits (prison suits? ). I like that idea 😀

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 16, 2015 11:12 am #

      I got the pic from Dakka, so I couldn’t tell you, sorry =(

      But, I am doing the same thing with mine, I gave them Maruader horsemen heads and am painting them in Orange to show they are prisoners. I really dig the number plate on the guns, too! Really says prisoner.

    • Avatar
      westrider October 16, 2015 11:47 am #

      They look to me like they’re mostly just basic Cadians, but with the shoulder pads cut away and some other conversion work.

    • Avatar
      Bogalubov October 16, 2015 11:59 am #

      It looks like Catachan legs with Cadian torsos. The arms on the Cadian’s had the shoulder pads removed. The heads are a mixture of Catachan and Cadians, all with the hair shaved. The guy with the scar is from one of the command squads, Cadian I think.

      When doing this mixing and matching you just have to remember that the Catachan legs come with a belt and so does the Cadian torso. Some people might role with two belts…but most would probably find it weird.

      • Avatar
        Jax October 17, 2015 12:43 am #

        wow thanks, thats alot of work to do !

  7. Avatar
    CaptainA October 16, 2015 10:33 am #

    I think another way to add theme is in the modelling/conversion and painting department. Making a cool looking list goes a long way at a tournament with your opponents. At least they might be distracted by the cool figures while you pummel them to victory!

    • Avatar
      Jural October 16, 2015 10:51 am #

      There was an awesome army at LVO last year which was Tyranids (really Hive Tyrants) and Knights but really modelled into a coherent theme. The Necron and Chaos team up was also modelled very well.

      Long story short- totally agree CaptainA

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 16, 2015 11:12 am #

      Lol, great point!

  8. Avatar
    Jural October 16, 2015 10:50 am #

    OK… Can you throw me together a fluffy but effective Tyranid list? I’m liking the Mycetic Spores (I think those are the drop pods), and want no more than 2 Hive Tyrants!

    I have also tried to put together a Slaanesh themed Chaos list that wins as many as it loses… but it really just ends up Heldrake and Maulerfiend spam (but that Slaanesh lord on a seeker in a unit of bikes with Outflank looks soooo tempting.) That’s one army where I really feel a pull between competitive vs. fluff (even if the high end of “competitive” is “Sniffing .500”)

    • Avatar
      Arrias October 16, 2015 11:43 am #

      I don’t have my stuff in front of me and I’m posting from work so this is gonna be a real quick sketch, but I’d play around with the following.

      2x “Dakka flyrants” (double devourers, wings, electroshock)
      Unfortunately kind of a requirement as they really are the workhorses of the codex. I’m kind of sick of running them every game, but feel free to switch one of them to double scything talons, wings, electroshock, and regen if you want to try some melee goodness. The good news is, if you want drop pods, it’s actually kinda fluffy to have two flyrants with you.

      I actually like 2 warrior squads in cover as Synapse shepherds and backline objective holders. I usually give each 3 man squad a barbed strangler to harass troops with pinning.

      Can’t go wrong with some zoeys in a pod. Synapse bubble, if your dice are kind, can be a good bullet sponge, and never underestimate that warp lance. An extra catalyst source is always nice too (if you roll it)

      1-2 crones. Not too bad Anti-Air and while the vector strike isn’t all that hot, it’s still not a bad option. Drool cannons can be fun as well.

      I’d say 2 exocrines, and 1 tyranofex (regen, electroshock, acid spray) all 3 with pods. Exocrine is your 2+/3+ save murderer and the tryanofex can clean up anything with a 4+.

      If there’s extra points, throw some termagant squads in pods as flavor.

      Will it win tournaments? Probably not. Will it catch some people off-guard. Probably. Do I think it could be effective? Yeah. Am I a terrible list builder? Absolutely!

  9. Avatar
    Chris October 16, 2015 10:57 am #

    This is pretty much what we preach in our local meta, and it’s pretty much self-regulating, as no-one wants to be “that guy with the Net-List”. We have a 1750 point 5 game tourney coming up in 2 weeks, and most of the armies being prepared are solid not spectacular in power, but mostly well-themed, or just downright silly (one dude is taking 19 librarians in the hope of summoning a LOT of bloodthirsters….). I’m taking 65 Genestealers beacuse I’m a masochist, and I believe some poor soul is painting up 200+ Grots to go with his Stompa……come to think of it, a lot of these lists may be influenced by having the event in a licenced premises……..the general attitude locally seems to be “play what you enjoy”, and it comes out in the meta, with “uncool” codices doing quite well. I just ran a 6 game 1500 pointer, and the top 3 were Dark Eldar (corpsethiefey), Plague Marines and friends, and Blobby Foot AM. One thing is for sure, you see a LOT of variety as a result as well.

    Viva le Difference!

    • Avatar
      Bellerah October 16, 2015 11:09 am #

      I think this has a lot to do with what we see. When I would go to the FLGS and they would have small eventsor events, we would go play one offs or the 1 day 3 game tourny, it was a 15 minute drive, I would go to get games in, maybe bring something different of fun that I wanted to try. When I go to LVO, and am into it for 2 PTO days and a $1,000 for the weekend, I am a little more invested and want to “Do well” Where the small group ends up self regulating, the large group does not come out in the same way.

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 16, 2015 11:13 am #

      That sounds like a really fun meta to play in!

      • Avatar
        Chris October 16, 2015 12:29 pm #

        That it is!You know its going to be a fun game when your opponent twists an exhaust on his Battlewagon and it starts spewing out death metal from a secreted mp3 player……..us Kiwis are a demented lot at the best of times……

        • Avatar
          punchymango October 16, 2015 6:43 pm #

          That does sound like fun. Like, really, the thing that makes me sad about modern 40k is how many of the game’s iconic units just aren’t relevant or viable.

          Terminators? Nope. Space Marines? Outside of battle company shenagans, scouts or bikers are superior. Chaos marines of any stripe? Nope. Howling Banshees? Suck.

          We all got into this game because it promised us these epic confrontations, space marines facing off against huge swarms or tyranids or mobs of orkz, chaos marines crossing chainblades with their loyalist nemeses, all that good stuff. But that never happens now, because none of those units or army styles are any good compared to centstars and grav spam.

          It’s like we’ve got some prisoner’s dilemma shit going on; a lot of people would prefer the game have more variety than it currently does, but you can’t get everyone to chill out at once, it’s an unstable equilibrium.

          Even if you have a gentleman’s agreement to take it easy and fly casual, all it takes is one guy to be like “here’s my quad-wraithknight list, qq you noobs” and people get tired of losing to him, so we end up back here.

  10. Avatar
    Hotsauceman1 October 16, 2015 11:26 am #

    Im still working on my ig dkok list with death riders.if I can make ig work, I will rub it all over rawdogs fac

    • Avatar
      Dbiesto October 16, 2015 11:51 am #

      Lol you should definitely go for it. I’ve kinda moved away from using heldrakes in my chaos list for 3 units of chaos spawn, tempted to give one unit Mark of Tzeentch one mark of Khorne one Nurgle so I can use all 4 gods and still possibly win a game or 2. Those 12+ tanks are a headache tho lol.

      • Avatar
        Dbiesto October 16, 2015 11:52 am #

        12 armor. Spawn only Str 5

        • Avatar
          Hotsauceman1 October 16, 2015 3:46 pm #

          Lol. I lost steam on the project because the box for the deathriders never arrived lol.it bummed me out

  11. Avatar
    westrider October 16, 2015 11:45 am #

    I feel like the Battle Company is a pretty good example of this, too. I don’t have much experience with it yet, but it’s always come across as a capable, but not overwhelming Army, so it hits both competitive and fun, and it’s right out of the fluff.

    I think DaemonKin have some good options here, too. Maybe not top tier, but between MaulerFiends, Flesh Hounds, Helldrakes, and some of the Character options, they’ve got a pretty good set of tools to deal with a lot of things. Really looking forward to running them with a Chaos Knight, soon. They’re a blast to play with, and most of my opponents have said they really like the list and playing against it as well.

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 16, 2015 1:27 pm #

      I am running a Chaos Knight with my KDK, too! I think he will be a great asset. The only issue with my KDK is that it is REALLY low on model count and that I have almost zero shooting, lol.

      • Avatar
        Dbiesto October 16, 2015 3:08 pm #

        I would really like to see you play that army sometime. Is it good enough for a competitive battle report or is it more for fun? Haven’t seen many KDK battle reports and I love how the Chaos Knight looks. (Although I’ve never seen one in any of the BRs)

        • Reecius
          Reecius October 17, 2015 2:37 pm #

          I think it’ll be competitive against anything apart from some nasty shooting armies such as frankie’s battle company.

          • Avatar
            Dbiesto October 17, 2015 6:35 pm

            I agree, that match was brutal Footdar vs Frankie Company. Too much shooting, too much mobility, and defense lol it’s definitely a lot harder to deal with marines nowadays when an experienced player builds an army like that. Someone posted a list with 80 flesh hounds and still fit in anti tank meltas. I’ve noticed a lot of chaos armies are either heavy shooting or heavy assault, it’s hard to balance cause of the point sinks in each unit lol. Or is KDK different?

          • Avatar
            westrider October 18, 2015 10:33 am

            Going heavy in either Shooting or Assault makes it harder to get picked apart piecemeal, since Chaos doesn’t have many Units that do both well. My main spot for Melta is the Bikes in my Gorepack, since they can really pack it in, and they unlock a ton of Flesh Hounds, so I like to take them anyhow.

      • Avatar
        westrider October 17, 2015 3:24 am #

        I feel like I’ve got a decent Model Count with all the Flesh Hounds and the required stuff for the Blood Host, but yeah, the lack of shooting is weird. A bunch of times, I’ve almost forgotten and just skipped right past my shooting phase, when I did actually want to fire my BaleFlamer or my handful of Meltas. In the versions without the Gorepack, it doesn’t even have the Meltas, and I’ve run incarnations where the only shooting was from Culties’ Autopistols.

  12. Avatar
    JM October 16, 2015 12:09 pm #

    This article is spot on. You can add a few fun elements to lower tiered army as long as the rest of your list is the cream of the crop from the codex (and or forgeworld, etc). Even in the example AM list, one man’s ‘fun’ list is another man’s ‘cherry picked imperial scum’ list.

    Maybe it’s because most of my armies are pretty bad, but I’ve found that I can only bring fun lists against other lower tiered armies. I can’t bring a list with my orks Kommandos that I lovingly modeled and converted or my foot nob unit with custom cybork bodies against a Adeptus Mechanicus + Skitarii army, no matter what they bring. It’s Zhadsnark’s bikers with tankbustas or I might as well not even unpack my army.

    The only army where I can really bring out my themed list is my Slaanesh Daemon army. Every single time without fail I will question why I brought a Keeper of Secrets, but nevertheless, it’s got very defined strengths and weaknesses that any opponent can understand.

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 16, 2015 1:24 pm #

      I feel you! Like your KoS, I must play with my Avatar! He’s my favorite model in my collection, lol, and despite the fact that he is red hot garbage, I still try to make him work.

      But yeah, you mix in power units and some fun units and I find you have an army that is fun for everyone and still good enough to give you a reasonable chance at victory.

      • Avatar
        Renzo October 17, 2015 1:26 pm #

        It’s funny you say that – I was listening to the allies of convenience podcast ETC coverage, and the Northern Ireland team captain took the Avatar and he said he performed extremely well. In formats that ban LOW, he can serve as an excellent counter charge unit for scatpacks

  13. Avatar
    Kwodd October 16, 2015 8:35 pm #

    Can you take an ammo dump with the VSG? I thought you could only add items from the obstacles list.

    • Avatar
      westrider October 16, 2015 10:01 pm #

      Yeah, I just checked it. Only upgrades are extra Shields and Obstacles, not the Battlements & Battlefield or Building upgrades.

      Also, the Ammo Store works on Models within 2″ of it, not Units, so you need to have the actual Plasmagunners within 2″, you can’t string mooks back to the ammo store while the Plasmagunners move ahead for extra Range.

      • Avatar
        Kwodd October 17, 2015 9:26 am #

        That’s what it looks like to me too West, I hope I’m wrong and there’s a way to get an ammo dump with the VSG but it doesn’t look like it…………. REECE?………..TO?………… This an ITC house rule or am I missing something?

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 20, 2015 3:20 pm #

      No you cannot! My mistake, sorry.

  14. Avatar
    W October 17, 2015 8:20 am #

    I feel that no matter what you take in a Chaos Daemons list it’s fluffy and thematic, including the very good lists. No ally shenanigans either, just a solid codex with a lot of choices, from flying circus to screamer or drone stars, summoning builds, Herald-hammer lists or even MSU all doing well in competitive scenes.

    I’m really liking my Renegade/CSM army, I feel like I always have a chance competitively (except against those darn space wolf ultra-deathstars), and I have a pretty “cheesy” amount of firepower to keep me well into the competitive game. Even when I crush my opponents they say it’s a fun game, since my list is active in all phases and it both looks and feels like a proper war.

    So yes, it’s definitely possible to make a list that’s fun, thematic and good (at least for the armies I play)

  15. Avatar
    G-man October 17, 2015 9:20 am #

    Nice article, Im not sure you can buy ammo dump for a voidshield generator tho. Only obstacles afaik.

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 20, 2015 3:20 pm #

      Yeah, I made a mistake on that one.

  16. Avatar
    Charlie October 18, 2015 3:05 am #

    Regarding your titular question, I do think you can build a thematic list that most people won’t cringe at when they see it on the table. I just finished up a 3 round local event, 18 players using the Warzone Atlanta Missions. I took Eldar and fought against three completely different armies: White Scars Invisi-star backed by a IK w/ huge template weapon; Adeptus Mechanics War Convocation, and a Green Tide with a Stompa. Each game was extremely challenging and not a single person, nor myself, complained about each others’ army. (The only caveat for army construction was only 1 Garg Creature or Superheavy in an army). Overall, I went 2-0-1 and placed 6th in Battle Points. To be honest, the super heavy hitter type armies were jockeying for top spots, but even against those, I’m not certain I would have been out of contention. I took the following and folks had a good game against it.

    The army had the flexibility and numbers to take some punishment, although having a White Scars army with Invisibility seize on me made for my toughest game (we play unmodified Invisibility). It has surprisingly decent speed due to the Craftworld Warhost special rule. Folks feared the D-Cannons, yet they only really shined against the Ork army when my opponent spearheaded his Gargant right into range of the D-Cannon battery and I ended up destroying the Gargant on Turn 1.

    In every game, I went 2nd and had to weather the first turn of shooting, which was surprisingly not as bad as I thought. The Ork army actually did the most damage with shooting, and that was with the Gargant. Maybe folks are not building a lot of long range firepower into their armies?

    Craftworld Eldar
    Guardian Warhost
    -3 x 10 Guardians with Eldar Missile Launcher
    -2 Vaul’s Wrath, D-Cannon
    -1 Vyper, Star Cannon, Shuriken Cannon
    -2 War Walkers, 4 Brightlances

    Aspect Host
    -5 Dark Reapers, Starshot, Exarch
    -6 Warp Spiders, Twin Linked Deathspinner, Exarch
    -8 Swooping Hawks, Exarch

    -8 Rangers

    Wraith Construct
    -1 Wraithknight

    Heroes of the Craftworld
    -Illic Nightspear

    Can I go to a larger, two day event with 64+ players and make the same claim? Most likely no. I do recognize that there can be some very extreme lists out there and my army would most likely not fare well. But for the other 80% of the field, the army was fun for all involved and I never felt like I had no chance. Overall, I think I can at least go to various events, play and have a reasonable expectation of winning more than losing and army selection not be a reason for my opponent nor myself not be having fun.

    Reece, thanks for the article.

    • Reecius
      Reecius October 20, 2015 3:21 pm #

      Looks like a very reasonable Eldar army, actually, and good fun.

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