Traitor Legions Detachment Review: Death Guard Vectorium.

Hello fans of Frontline Gaming, SaltyJohn, and TFGRadio today I’m bringing you the Death Guard from Traitor Legions, the Vectorium, in all it’s filthy, resilient glory! For more reviews, bat reps, tactics discussions, and analysis check out the Tactics Corner!


The XIV Legion of the Adeptus Astartes were always known as the most resilient of the already resilient Space Marines created by the Emperor of Mankind. With an increased resistance to poisons, toxic environments, and other contagions that would fell members of the other Legions the Death Guard would often march implacably into the most dangerous environments of the Great Crusade, their Primarch Mortarion leading the way sweeping the enemies of the Emperor away with his huge scythe. In the end Horus turned Mortarion to his side and the Death Guard became imbued with the rotting powers of Nurgle. Immune to fear, and pain the already relentless Death Guard became nigh unstoppable agents of Chaos.


In game terms the Death Guard actually live up well to their fluff. As with most of the Traitor Legions, covered in Traitor Legions, the Death Guard had their fluff worked into their detachment rules in a way that was more effective, and cheaper, than in Codex Chaos Space Marines. The Death Guard detachment in Traitor Legions is called the Death Guard Vectorium and I must admit, it has been a hell of a lot of fun to play. The detachment, like all of those in Traitor Legions, gives you great flexibility in creating your detachment, with even more options than the loyalist Chapters who are often hamstrung to the same three basic builds within the Gladius Strikeforce.


Death Guard Special Rules:

  • No unique characters except Typhus.
  • Units than can take a Mark of Nurgle must.
  • Units with other marks cannot be taken.
  • All units that can take Veterans of the Long War (VotLW) must do so for free.
  • Daemon Princes must have Mark of Nurgle
  • Psykers can generate powers from the Discipline of Nurgle.
  • Gifts of Nurgle– Units with VotLW are Fearless, have Feel no Pain, and reduce their Initiative by 1.
  • Inexorable Advance– Units with VotLW have the Relentless rule.
  • Lords of the Plague Host– Units of Plague Marines are Troops, not Elites.

Vectorium Command Benefits:

  • Plague Lord– Re-roll warlord traits if your warlord is rolling on the DG table.
  • Disgustingly Resilient– Units from the detachment re-roll Feel No Pain rolls of 1.
  • Cloud of Flies– Units from this detachment that are targeted for a shooting attack by a unit over 18 inches away have the Stealth rule.
  • Command 0-4
    • Lord of the Legion
  • Auxiliary 4+
    • The Lost and the Damned, Heldrake Terror Pack, Cult of Destruction, Fist of the Gods, Raptor Talon, Terminator Annihilation Force, Favoured of Chaos, Spawn.
  • Core 1+



The best part about this detachment is the overall boost in resiliency to the units that are part of it, particularly those units that have Veterans of the Long War. You can easily build a list with army wide Toughness 5 or better, that has Feel No Pain (re-rolling 1s), Stealth from over 18in away, and Relentless. You’re probably going to have a lot of Objective Secured units as well because you’re taking a Warband. You just are. That is really good. Think about it like a Space Marine Gladius but with units that are more difficult to kill. I know T5 and 5+ FNP doesn’t sound that great at first but when you set them down on the table and start to see how it all works, it can be brutal.

In these articles I always try to focus on the best way to use the unit, formation, detachment in question. With the Death Guard Vectorium there are several great ways to run it, all centered around a Chaos Warband. The Warband is a central component to any of the detachments found in Traitor Legions. They have units included as “must takes” that are all benefiting greatly from the Chaos Renaissance of the Traitor Legions book. Chaos Lord, Chosen, Bikers, Chaos Space Marines, and Havocs are the big winners. For more on just how read the hyperlinked articles, each one includes notes on just how they benefit from being run as a Death Guard Vectorium.

The increased all around resilience of the Vectorium can’t be over stated. The Havocs alone, with T5, Relentless, Objective Secured, Feel No Pain, Fearless, and Stealth (most of the time) make for a wonderful backfield camping unit that requires real dedication from your opponent to move off an objective. You have to kill them all to get them off an objective because they won’t run, and can take a lot of shooting to kill. Resiliency aside what exactly can you do with this formation? The standard way to run it is to go with a small Death Star. Usually a bike star or Spawn Star centered around a Lord on Bike with 1 or 2 Sorcerers on Bikes. The great thing about the Warband is you can take on Sorcerer in it, and he’s also Objective Secured. You probably already have a decent idea for how the Vectorium with a Warband would work if you read the Hyperlinked articles so let’s look at a few ways to load out the Vectorium.

My personal favorite is an all foot slogging list.


This is my current Death Guard Army in pre-heresy colors. It’s the list below.

  • Warband
    • Lord, Bike, Fist, Claw, Sigil of Corruption, Blight Grenades
    • Sorcerer, Bike, Stave, Sigil, Mastery Lvl 2
    • 3×10 Chaos Space Marines, Plasma Gun, Autocannon
    • 2×5 Havocs 4 Autocannons
    • 5 Terminators Heavy Flamer, 4x Chainfists
    • 3 Chaos Bikers 2x Meltagun
  • Lord of the Legion
    • 1 Sorcerer, Bike, Axe, Sigil, Lvl 2
  • Auxiliary
    • 4 Spawn with Mark of Nurgle

Generally speaking the list is straight forward. With nothing under T5 and the added resiliency of all the FNP and Stealth the list is hard to table; the big 10 man squads are also nice for that very reason. Remember that everything is Relentless so you never have to worry about choosing to move or fire, or fire Rapid fire or assault. One of the best parts of the Death Guard is the ability to fire all your weapons in a squad, Rapid Fire/Heavy etc and still charge. I really like the unit of terminators T5, FNP, and Stealth gives them that little extra layer of protection they need. They’re great to deep strike in the backfield and draw the enemies fire for 2 turns or so. Another great list uses more transports and less Terminators.

  • Warband
    • Lord, Bike, Fist, Sigil of Corruption, Blight Grenades
    • Sorcerer, Bike, Stave, Sigil, Mastery Lvl 3, Familiar
    • 3×5 Chaos Space Marines, Plasma Gun, Rhino
    • 3×5 Havocs 4 Autocannons
    • 5 Chosen, 4x Meltaguns, Rhino
    • 5 Chaos Bikers 2x Meltagun, Meltabomb
  • Lord of the Legion
    • 1 Sorcerer, Bike, Axe, Sigil, Lvl 3, Familiar
  • Auxiliary
    • 4 Spawn with Mark of Nurgle

This list provides more maneuverability. Generally here I would roll on the Strategic Warlord Traits to try and get outflank for 3 units and then Outflank the Chosen, 1 CSM Squad, and the Bikes. Again everything is super resilient compared to regular MEQs. The last list I really like uses Typhus.


  • Warband
    • Typhus
    • Sorcerer, Terminator Armor, Stave, Sigil, Mastery Lvl 3, Combi-melta
    • 2×5 Chaos Space Marines, Plasma Gun, Rhino
    • 2×5 Havocs 4 Autocannons
    • 5 Terminators 4x Combi-melta, 2x Chainfists, 3x Axes, Land Raider DT.
    • 3 Chaos Bikers 2x Meltagun
  • Auxiliary
    • The Lost and the Damned
      • Dark Apostle
      • 4×10 Cultists

This list is interesting on a few levels. Typhus makes the Cultists Zombies, which is good. The Land Raider is also going to throw a few people for a loop as nobody uses them much anymore. Obviously some lists still have what it takes to rip one open turn one but not all and the unit inside is hard to handle. With 74 models that are all more difficult to kill than usual and a lot of Objective Secured it is potentially annoying list.

The best thing about the Death Guard Vectorium, and really all the new lists available from the Traitor Legions book is the wealth of flavorful options for Chaos players. You can build all types of lists with the book and the various detachments and formations. Below you’ll find several Battle Reports I did with my Death Guard Vectorium lists, enjoy!

As always, share your thoughts in the comments section! And remember, Frontline Gaming sells Games Workshop product at up to 25% off, every day.



About SaltyJohn

John has been playing Warhammer 40k since the 3rd edition box set with Space Marines, Dark Eldar, and weird green palm trees were in the set. He is currently a 40k Head Judge for the Las Vegas Open, the largest 40k tournament in the world. An avid board gamer, a huge fan of video games, and a guest spot on Geek and Sundry as a "Historian" during an episode of "Game the Game" round out his geek credentials. You can catch "Salty" John on TFG Radio's Twitch Show, and Podcast, as well as find him streaming video games on Twitch on the TFG Radio Twitch page from time to time.

3 Responses to “Traitor Legions Detachment Review: Death Guard Vectorium.”

  1. Desc440 April 22, 2017 6:36 am #

    A Vectorium list without 3 squads of both bikes and auto Havocs is doing itself a disservice, imo.

  2. Beau April 22, 2017 6:45 am #

    Spot on write up. I personally have had great success running the Vectorum alongside a daemon Incursion list using tallyband. With nurglings infiltrating and corrupting most of the objectives on the board, and then ObSec to hold the corrupted points my opponents simply can’t capture/score enough points. The nurglings turn off overwatch and reduce stats as well which is great. Throw a doombell on the herald and if you are fighting some xenos they just may fail a fear test. Doombell also synergies well with psychic shriek from any bike sorcerers.

    The true thing with Nurgle however, is they do not do much damage compared to most other armies (hence why most players bring DP’s with black mace etc). Their resiliency leans more towards playing the mission, tar pitting, and whittling down your opponents key units. I don’t know that I have ever tabled anyone playing Nurgle.

    What is the ITC ruling with DG zombies on mark of Nurgle?

  3. Shane O April 23, 2017 3:50 am #

    Just a thought about the Lord of the Legion HQ detachment, does it not require all four HQ’s.
    I read it as you have to take one of each, Daemon Prince, Lord, Sorcerer and Dark apostle not just a single one.

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