Hey everyone. Chandler here with a review on the new Angel’s Blade Lost Brotherhood Strike Force. For more reviews, analysis and battle reports, check out the Tactics Corner.
It is said that in the final moments of entering The Black Rage, a Blood Angel will see Sanguinius’s death at the hands of Horus, the traitor. He will live that moment over and over until he embraces the sweet relief of death. Until that point, he becomes a member of the Death Company. For most Blood Angels players, we have always dreamed of being able to field an entire Death Company army, and now, thanks to the new Angel’s Blade supplement we have that choice with the Lost Brotherhood Strike Force detachment.
Overview: The Lost Brotherhood Strike Force is a special detachment presented in Angel’s Blade. It features a new unit, the Death Company Chaplain who comes stock with a jump pack and an Inferno Pistol. He can be selected as an HQ in any Blood Angels detachment, but is especially effective with Death Company as he allows Death Company units to re-roll to wound rolls when they charge, something only Astorath had access to prior to this.
With the Lost Brotherhood Strike Force you gain the following command benefits:
- The Angel’s Virtue: Re-roll warlord traits from the Death Company Warlord Traits or Codex: Blood Angels Warlord Traits.
- The Red Thirst: Add +1 initiative when charging except when making a disordered charge.
- Unleashed Upon the Foe: Immediately after deploying a unit from this detachment you may move the unit 6″ as if they are making a move in a movement phase (the unit cannot run) but units arriving from reserve do not receive this benefit. It is composed of the following required units:
1 Command – Death Company Chaplain, Lemartes, or Astorath
1+ Core –
Death Company Strike Force – Command Benefit: All units from this detachment within 12″ of the Death Company Chaplain gain +1 Attacks
- 1 Death Company Chaplain
- 3 Death Company Squads
- 1-3 Death Company Dreadnoughts
0-5 Auxiliary – Chosen from the following:
Archangels Orbital Intervention Force – Command Benefit: Must be held in deep strike reserve. One reserve roll for the formation to arrive. Regular Terminators may shoot twice. Assault Terminators may charge the turn they arrive from Deep Strike Reserve but count as a Disordered Charge.
- 3 Terminator squads in any combination of regular Terminators and Assault Terminators
10th Company Ambush Force – Command Benefit: Scout bikes must be equipped with mines. Every unit that deploys with Infiltrate and doesn’t move gets Stealth and Precision Shots on the first turn.
- 3-5 Scouts or Scout Bike Squads
Lucifer Armoured Task Force – Command Benefit: All units have Scout and Overcharged Engines for free.
- 1 Techmarine
- 3-5 Baal Predators or Predators
- 1-3 Land Raiders, Land Raider Crusaders, or Land Raider Redeemers
Stormraven Squadron – Command Benefit: Once per battle, during the movement phase, declare you target an enemy unit. All the Stormravens within 72″ of the target and within line of sight must shoot all their remaining Stormstrike Missiles at the target. This doesn’t count towards the number of weapons usable and the Stormravens may use their weapons during the shooting phase as normal
- 2-4 Stormraven Gunships
Rapid Assault Force – No Command Benefit.
- 1-3 units of either Assault Squads, Bike Squads, Attack Bike Squads, Land Speeders
What’s interesting in this force is that it requires a Command choice but does not require an Auxiliary and allows you to take more than one Core choice. Additionally, any Death Company Squads from the detachment can take a Stormraven Gunship as a dedicated transport. The Death Company Chaplain also has the option of selecting from the Relics of the Lost list instead of the Relics of Baal. Unfortunately, this is only available to Death Company Chaplains taken in either the Lost Brotherhood detachment or the Death Company Strike Force. The Relics of the Lost are all very good, but it is disappointing that you can’t take them with a Death Company Chaplain from a Combined Arms Detachment or a Baal Strike Force. The relics are as follows:
- The Reliquary Armour – Confers a 2+ armor save, Crusader, and Adamantium Will
- The Guardian’s Blade – user Strength, AP 2 melee, armourbane, two-handed, master-crafted
- The Blood Shard – The bearer gains the Counter-Attack special rule
- Baal’s Vengeance – Template, pistol, poisoned (4+) AP 6
- Fyrestorm – 12″ Strength 8, AP 1, pistol, melta, master-crafted
- The Gilded Crozius – +2 Strength, AP 3, Melee, concussive, master-crafted. Replaces the normal Crozius Arcanum and all models in the bearer’s unit that have the Feel No Pain rule can re-roll Feel No Pain rolls of 1.
All of the relics here are useful. My personal favorites are The Guardian’s Blade and The Gilded Crozius. An AP 2 weapon that strikes on initiative and has armourbane combined with Furious Charge is nice! And re-rolling those Feel No Pain rolls of 1 can be huge in the game and makes the Death Company Squad a little more resilient.
Death Company Warlord traits are only available to HQ units from a Death Company Strike Force or a Lost Brotherhood Detachment. This is somewhat disappointing as really the only HQ available that can gain the warlord trait is the Death Company Chaplain. Still, they are actually pretty useful:
- 1 – Blood-augur: Once per game turn, as long as your Warlord is still alive, you may re-roll any single dice. This could be a Reserve roll, a To Hit roll, a Saving Throw, a single dice of a Leadership test, etc. Nice! Probably the most useful warlord trait available here. Being able to manipulate reserves in the Detachment is pretty awesome.
- 2 – Beacon of Rage: Your Warlord and all friendly Death Company Squads within 12″ of him when they declare a charge have the Fleet special rule. Again, Nice! Getting Fleet on Death Company makes them that much more dangerous.
- 3 – Caged Fury: Your Warlord and any unit he joins have the Rampage special rule. Death Company already get a massive amount of attacks. Adding d3 extra to that per model is pretty amazing.
- 4 – Infectious Tenacity: Your Warlord has the Feel No Pain special rule. If your Warlord already has Feel No Pain, add 1 to any Feel No Pain rolls you make for him instead. This one is just ok really, but on a 2 wound Death Company Chaplain it can make him last just a little bit longer on the table.
- 5 – Black Fury: Your Warlord has the Rage special rule. Since Death Company Chaplains don’t have Rage already, this is a pretty good boost.
- 6 – Visions of Heresy: Your Warlord and all friendly Death Company Squads within 12″ of him have the Hatred (Chaos Daemons and Chaos Space Marines) special rule. Situational, but getting the 12″ Hatred bubble can be pretty nice in the case where you are up against those armies.
Tactics: This army is really the epitome of what the Death Company should be. The free 6″ move acts as a Scout move only without the restriction of being unable to charge on turn 1. So, on the first game turn, you’re looking at an 18″ move with jump pack Death Company Squads and a 2d6 charge roll on top of that. This army plays fast and can really lay down the hammer if they can make the charge. That said, it really relies heavily on going first to avoid getting shot to pieces before you get a chance to even move them.
The Lost Brotherhood Strike Force is really designed around getting up close and personal with the enemy as fast as possible. You aren’t going to win many games trying to play the objectives with this force. They are all about hitting hard and wiping the army out, or dying trying to do so, which is really what the Death Company is all about anyway. That said, there are ways to optimize their killing ability. Let’s take a look at an 1850 list.
- +++Lost Brotherhood Strike Force+++
- Death Company Chaplain
- Death Company Strike Force
- Death Company Chaplain with The Guardian’s Blade
- 3 Death Company Dreads all in Lucius Pattern Drop Pods
- 1 5 man Death Company Squad with jump packs with 1 power fist
- 2 5 man Death Company Squads in drop pods
- Archangels Orbital Intervention Force
- 1 Assault Terminator Squad with thunderhammer/storm shields
- 1 Assault Terminator Squad with Lightning Claws
- 1 Terminator squad with Heavy Flamer
- Total: 1850 points
So, the idea here is that you have 5 pods so you’re getting the 3 Lucius Pods down on turn 1, while keeping the Death Company Dreads embarked. Meanwhile, your Death Company chaplain and his squad are moving up the table using their extra 6″ move to get into position for either a first turn charge or to get in range to boost the Death Company Dreads attacks when they charge out. Turn 2 is when you’re really hoping to lay down the hammer for a hard beta strike. The Dreads disembarking from their pods and moving the chaplain in range of at least one or two of them. Then the terminators arrive from deep strike reserve ready to charge in. Meanwhile you can drop other Death Company units down to capture objectives, or to lay down fire support with bolters.
Again, the Lost Brotherhood Strike Force isn’t really designed to play for objectives. It’s all about the killing. This army, in the hands of a capable general, can give many opponents fits because of its speed and ability to get in their face with actual effective killing potential. This is a fun army designed to really show off what the Death Company can do. So dust off the boys in black and get them back on the table top!
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