Hello fans of Frontline Gaming and TFGRadio, SaltyJohn here to bring you a review of the new 8th edition Grey Knights rules for Grand Masters who hang out in Dreadknights! For more reviews, bat reps, tactics discussions, and analysis check out the Tactics Corner!
The Grey Knights, dubbed Chapter 666 of the Adeptus Astartes, are some of the rarest and most powerful Space Marines in the Imperium of Man. Calling the moon of Titan their home these warriors of peerless psychic power do battle with the most dangerous of mankind’s foes, the daemons of the warp. Having been through the most arduous of trials, both physically and psychically, and armed with the most forbidden of knowledge about the denizens of the warp these warriors stand as a bulwark against the demonic incursions that constantly threaten the fabric of not only the Imperium of Man, but of the galaxy itself. The leaders of these mighty warriors are the Grand Masters, normally numbering 8 in all, they lead brotherhoods of Grey Knights against the most dangerous Chaos incursions in the Galaxy. They are warriors of unmatched abilities when it comes to the defeat and banishment of the greatest Daemons in the panoply of the Chaos gods. Sometimes when the foe is particularly strong a Grand Master might wear a suit of Nemesis Dreadknight armor in order to do battle with their deadly foe and banish it back to the warp.
The Grand Master in Nemesis Dreadknight is a truly powerful unit in 40k. Resilient, with powerful shooting attacks, close combat punch that can deal massive damage, and access to powerful psychic powers the Grand Master in Nemesis Dreadknight is not only versatile it is a near auto include in many Grey Knight lists in 8th edition. With the ability to take more than one, even as many as 5 in a Supreme Command detachment (!?) they can be a big problem for your opponent. However, as with any unit in 8th edition 40k, they aren’t going to win you the game on their own but they are a big piece of the puzzle to winning with Grey Knights.
- Nemesis Dreadknight
- Two Dreadfists
- May take up to two DIFFERENT weapons: Heavy Incinerator, Gatling Psilencer, Heavy Psycannon
- May replace one Dreadfist with Nemesis Daemon Greathammer or a Nemesis Greatsword.
- May take a Dreadknight Teleporter: If this model has a Dreadknight teleporter, then during deployment, you can set it up in a teleportarium chamber instead of placing it on the battlefield. At the end of any of your Movement phases this model can teleport into battle–set it up anywhere on the battlefield that is more than 9″ away from any enemy models.
- And they Shall Know No Fear, Daemon Hunters, Rites of Banishment
- Force Shielding and Iron Halo: 4+ Invul save
- Rites of Battle: You can re-roll hit rolls of 1 for friendly GREY KNIGHTS units within 6″ of this model.
- Psyker: This model can attempt to manifest two psychic powers in each friendly Psychic phase, and attempt to deny one psychic power in each enemy Psychic phase. It knows the Smite psychic power and one psychic power from the Sanctic discipline.
Grand Masters in Nemesis Dreadknights are great units to field in a Grey Knight army/detachment. They have versatility in both shooting and close combat weapons plus they can cast two powers each Psychic phase making them great at utilizing Smite spam and buffing themselves or units around them. With Dreadknight Teleporters for only 10 points you get access to the ability to set them up in Reserves and drop them in.
A general load out that is good for dropping in from reserves would be GMDK with Doomfist, Greathammer, Teleporter, and Incinerator at 245 points. Using this load out you can then take a Relic, the Destroyer of Crys’yllix if you want (ACTUALLY YOU CAN’T TAKE THAT RELIC -S.J.), and for Psychic powers I would probably take either Gate of Infinity or Sanctuary. The best part about this you can take more than one of these guys! 2-3 GMDK loaded out in different ways with different powers can become very versatile. Drop them in with Draigo in tow and their withering firepower can now re-roll all failed to hit rolls! NOTE: As some commenters pointed out their Aura allows them full re-rolls to hit however that is only while they are at full strength and not degraded; I am also assuming you’ll be dropping other units in alongside the Dreadknights to assist in rolling up a flank of the board which would benefit from Draigo. Most competitive style GK lists feature Draigo or Voldus plus GMDKs. Speaking of their fire power.
- Gatling Psilencer 24in range Heavy 12 S4 AP0 D d3
- While 12 shots is nice at 24 inches, especially if you drop the DK in, at S4 and AP0 it’s not scaring too many units in the game. Unless you know you’re running up against a horde of weak models it might be best to leave at home. Even if you’re willing to spend 2CP in situational circumstances to boost the by 1 to S5 AP-1 it still isn’t going to be worth it most of the time.
- Heavy Incinerator 12in range Heavy d6 S6 AP-1 D2
- With 12 inch range you can get this sucker into range even when having to drop 9in from the enemy. Heavy d6 isn’t too great as on average you’re looking to get 3.5 over the long term with plenty of ones and twos in there to frustrate you. I personally don’t like the random number of shot/hit weapons but your mileage may vary.
- Heavy Psycannon 24in range Heavy 6 S7 AP-1 D2
- This is the work horse, go to ranged weapon of the Dreadknight. With high strength, decent damage, and a fixed number of shots it is both versatile and effective without having to spend valuable CPs to boost it.
The GMDK is also a beast in close combat when used correctly. With WS 2+, S6 (usually higher thanks to DK weapons), T6, and 12 wounds it can mix it up in close combat. If you position Draigo well you can also be getting a re-roll of failed to hits in combat because we all know rolling ones more than statistically probable is a thing for units that do things on a 2+. Just like for shooting, you have 3 basic options for assault weapons.
- Dreadfist Sx2 AP-3 D d3
- Two of these are the default load out for any Dreadknight. With a high str characteristic it’s alos decent enough at AP-3 but with only d3 damage it is the worst of the 3 options.
- Nemesis Daemon Greathammer Sx2 AP-4 D d6
- High str, great AP modifier and d6 damage make this easily the best choice of the 3.
- Nemesis Greatsword S+4 AP-3 D d6
- With only +4 to Str and AP-3 what makes this better than the Dreadfists is the potential damage output. D6 > D3.
As far as Grey Knight Stratagems go the GMDK is a good unit in that it won’t require you to use precious CPs to make it work. You don’t need to expend them to move quickly, deploy via teleportation, increase damage output, etc. You may want to use some CP to allow the Grand Master in Nemesis Dreadknight to shoot again, or fight again, before removing it from play. For only 1CP it could be one additional shooting, or fighting, phase that turns the tide of battle in your favor.
As with a lot of units in the Grey Knights codex the Grand Master in Nemesis Dreadknight is a great unit that meshes well with the rest of the army when used properly. Grey Knights work the best when you focus on a part of the battlefield and enemy army, destroy it and move on. Usually a flank. Through use of faster units like the Dreadknight, and re-positioning through things like Gate of Infinity it is possible to use the big units like GMDK, Draigo, and smaller units like Strike Squads and Terminators in concert with one another to focus down the enemy one portion at a time through efficient and withering mid range firepower. Winning with Grey Knights, particularly pure Grey Knight lists can be a challenge but through use of Stratagems, key Psychic phases, smart play and a few great units like the Grand Master in Nemesis Dreadknight it is possible to do well, even in a matched play environment.
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