Tyranid Codex Review: Elites: Pyrovore

Hello again, Danny from TFG Radio here to talk about one of the most laughably terrible units in the game, so get ready for some salt and hopefully for humor to lift our spirits as we talk about the Pyrovore.  Be sure to check out Frontline’s Tactics Corner to see what good models look like.


The Pyrovore is meant to be a light infantry sweeper that helps the little bugs punch through the line by taking out the chaff, but its limited range and tendency to suck and die makes it a liability.



Flamespurt: S5 AP4 flamer weapon.

Acid Blood: When wounded in melee, a chance to inflict a wound on the enemy.

Acid Maw: May exchange its melee attacks for one S5 AP2 attack instead.


May take 2 more for a unit of 3.

Ok, so on the surface, there are a few things to like. A heavy flamer isn’t bad.  Acid Blood is ok, super situational, but ok.  Acid Maw is actually not too terrible as it at least gives the Pyrovore a chance to hurt a Terminator unit or some such, but with a unit size of only 3 at max, you really aren’t getting a lot of mileage out of it.  3 S5 AP2 attacks at initiative 2 isn’t setting the world on fire, especially for over a hundred points.


Special Rules:

Instinctive Behavior (Feed): If it fails an LD6 test out of synapse, on a 1-3, the unit attacks itself (counted as 4-5 if the Pyrovore is alone), on a 4-5, this bug cannot run/shoot and must attempt assault the closest viable enemy.  On a 6, it does the same but receives Rage.

Very Bulky: 3 models for transport.

Volatile: If a Pyrovore is slain by Instant Death, every model within D6 inches suffers a S3 AP- hit.

Ok, so if you are thinking “these guys aren’t so bad”, you aren’t paying attention.  IB Feed is terrible for a unit, and the Pyrovores have a chance to slowly eat themselves.   Very Bulky is mostly useless as at max unit size of 3, they easily fit in a Tyrannocyte, and Volatile is well, bad.  At T4, there is a whole lot of S8 out there, and that means these little bugs are going to pop pretty easy, and S3 AP- is pretty worthless, except against things like Gants, so yah, it mostly sucks for the Nid player, not as a reason for your opponent to be mindful of it.


Ok, so how can you try to use these?  You don’t. Well, you can take 3 for a unit of flamer goodness unit that marches up the field and hopes to get within 8 inches of enemies before a swift and terrible death.  Oh wait, they will likely die to small arms well before that happens.  You can also load them up into a Tyrannocyte and try to drop some flaming death into the backfield to clear away objective campers like Scouts.  Of course, this is almost 200 points for a unit that does nothing with a bad scatter.  Really, the best use I can think of besides paper weight is to use them as objective campers in your backfield as 2 or 3 D3 S5 AP4 wall of death hits in Overwatch isn’t too bad, especially if you run into a meta heavy with Genestealer Cult.  That is really the one time these bugs are legit scary to an enemy is when they are running lots of little 5-man hybrid units to try and ambush away.   You are also barely paying over 10 points per wound on these guys, so 3W each isn’t terrible, really. I guess. If they dropped Acid Blood and made each model 15 points cheaper, they’d be slightly less terrible.

Of course, the fundamental problem here is that these bugs just can’t leverage their weapon with any consistency and impact.  Everyone wish lists for Torrent, and if they had it, they’d certainly be much better, but they don’t, so let’s wait for 8th edition I guess.  A T4, they are very susceptible to Instant Death, and chances are, any unit bringing S8 in melee is going to be able to shrug off Volatile. Again, that rule is more a hindrance for the Nid player than the enemy as it pretty much means they have to stay far away from our little bugs.   They are far too slow to be able to get to the enemy and spray them down with flame, and while Acid Maw is cool, with only 3 in the unit, it isn’t that cool.   They are also not at all resilient, so even the standard Bolter is going to start giving them problems.

So yah, the Pyrovore is pretty terrible, and even in casual play, it is a waste of points. Even in Kill Team it is pretty worthless. Just in general, don’t take them. If you have them, I’m sorry.  Convert them to Biovores where they can get some use, or paint the hell out of them as a nice display piece.  The only time to take them is to troll a GSC player.  Of course, if you do this and win, be sure to gloat for YEARS.  You’ve earned it.   Sorry for the salt, but the truth must be said, and well, check out TFG Radio for a bit more.  Next up, the Fast Attack choices!

And as always, Frontline Gaming sells Games Workshop product at up to 25% off of retail, every day!

Frontline Gaming will buy your used models for cash or store credit!



About Danny Ruiz

Long-long time 40K player, one of the original triumvirate of head 40K judges at LVO, writer, educator, tyranid-enthusiast, disciple of Angron, man about town, afflicted with faction ADD.

14 Responses to “Tyranid Codex Review: Elites: Pyrovore”

  1. Avatar
    Dakkath March 24, 2017 10:11 pm #

    The only good use for pyrovres are as a biovore proxy/conversion. Seriously, they look so much better and more like a ‘living artillery” than the nurgle-spawn-esque biovores.

  2. Avatar
    abusepuppy March 24, 2017 10:37 pm #

    The Pyrovore looks like a great, big dick. I think that pretty accurately sums up my thoughts on it.

  3. Avatar
    Anggul March 25, 2017 2:09 am #

    I mean… I guess at least they’re now second-worst after maleceptors?

    It isn’t much of an achievement.

    • Avatar
      abusepuppy March 25, 2017 7:59 am #

      I dunno, the Maleceptor at least has a ranged psychic power that ignores armor (and no longer has to make a to-hit roll on BS3.) It’s a tough call, though.

    • Danny Ruiz
      Danny Ruiz March 28, 2017 8:13 am #

      Yah, I’d rather have a Maleceptor as at least it has an invul save. Pyrovores are just le sigh.

  4. Avatar
    Double DeamonDuccas March 25, 2017 9:13 am #

    THAT…. Is a giant dick gun if I’ve ever seen one.

  5. Avatar
    William betts March 25, 2017 12:49 pm #

    Pyrovors, promethium pipelines, malenthropes.
    So you can take up to 30″ of pipes.
    They give the pyrovors torrent while behind them. The pipes grant a 4+ cover save, the malenthrope or venomthrope pumps that up to a 2+ cover.
    If you mix this in with an army of flyers and gaunt spam, along with clever placement of the objectives, then this unit is good at protecting from your deployment, past the half way mark.
    You have a 2+ cover model sitting on an objective in your deployment, with a 2+ cover, shooting flamers at 20″ away.
    I dont see this as bad

    • Avatar
      abusepuppy March 25, 2017 8:56 pm #

      Aside from the fact that you’re still vulnerable to melee, and that the Ignores Cover hits from the pipelines when they “blow up” on you will shred your Pyrovores and/or Venomthrope, and the fact that I don’t think that the Pipeline is even big enough to give either the Pyrovore or the Venomthrope 25% obscurement against most things, and the fact that you’re looking at a bare minimum investment of 125pts just to hold your deployment zone with two models (when Lictors, Gaunts, etc could all do the same job for cheaper)…

      But yeah, aside from those problems, it’s pretty not bad.

      • Avatar
        Jural March 27, 2017 8:41 pm #

        It sucks. Also, best way to run pyrovores if you somehow have to.

        But luckily… you don’t 😉

    • Avatar
      vybert March 27, 2017 9:20 pm #

      Pretty sure these aren’t qualified as “flamer” weapons per the brb or codex definitions, which is what is required for prompipes to work. I’m sure you could get a pass from your opponent though just for playing them

      • Avatar
        abusepuppy March 27, 2017 11:55 pm #

        Not true- the Pyrovore’s Flamespurt, among other xenos weapons, is listed as a flamer weapon.

  6. Avatar
    WestRider March 25, 2017 1:59 pm #

    A buddy of mine has the ultimate Pyrovore bragging rights, since the time when Volatile finished off Pedro Kantor after he killed one with his PowerFist 🙁

    That said, the best use I can imagine *planning* for is to paint it up really nicely and try to win a painting contest or something.

  7. Avatar
    Jural March 27, 2017 8:43 pm #

    Honestly… this unit, if it was 30 points for a unit of 3, might still be bad.

    I can’t imagine a usage right now.

    Maybe they can re-release the codex and give these guys skyfire 😉

  8. Avatar
    Derptau April 17, 2017 7:09 am #

    I know this is an older article, but the way to fix these guys is super simple. Just change it to a beast. That would be the best thing for them. MTC and 12″ movement would change their role dramatically. They could be then moved to wherever needed in a defensive role or alternatively, used as an aggressive forward moving infantry cleaner.

    I don’t think torrent would save them from their 6 inch movement in a couple of cases as they’d still be a ponderous threat, meaning they’re still an extra turn away from a safe charge. Taking 3, flaming a unit of marines and charging them as beast would most likely keep them in combat for the opposing players next turn.

Leave a Reply