Xenos Specialist Detachments – Rules Preview

Vigilus Defiant is almost upon us – in fact, it’s up for pre-order on Saturday! We’ve learned a lot about the war-torn history of the sentinel world of late, so this week, we’re taking a closer look at some of the cool rules that can be found within the mighty campaign book.

This article was originally published on the Warhammer-community site.

In today’s preview, we’re taking a look at some of the Specialist Detachments for the xenos factions that feature in the book. But before we do, let’s answer the question on everyone’s lips…

The 41st Millennium is rife with warring factions, each adapting as best they can to different war zones and battlefield environments in order to gain an advantage over their enemies. The Specialist Detachments that feature in Imperium Nihilus: Vigilus Defiant represent a selection of the military formations that have been fielded by those fighting there, from the Primaris veterans of Guilliman’s Indomitus Crusade to the Kults of Speed that formed the spearhead of the Ork Speedwaagh!

Though formally set on Vigilus in the narrative, Specialist Detachments can be freely used in open, narrative and matched play in any setting, provided that your army is Battle-forged. Specialist Detachments are ‘unlocked’ by using the associated Stratagem and applying it to a Detachment of your choice when choosing your army. It’s worth pointing out that Specialist Detachments do not come with any special rules or abilities – instead, once activated, certain units or unit types within it will gain a keyword that interacts with a new Warlord Trait, relic and some additional Stratagems. In short, for the cost of a Command Point, you’ll have access to some cool new Stratagems and powerful buffs for your characters!

With that in mind, let’s check out a few Specialist Detachments belonging to the xenos forces on Vigilus:

If you’re looking to add some serious muscle to your Genestealer Cults, the Anointed Throng will help you do just that. This Specialist Detachment unlocks a number of useful tricks, including a Warlord Trait that adds 1 to charge rolls for nearby Anointed Throng units, and the Blessed Sledgehammer relic that improves your Abominant’s weapon to a tank-busting AP of -4. If you’re looking to take on a particularly powerful foe, why not charge them with an Aberrant unit and activate Devotion Till Death – even if they die, you may find yourself able to take out a choice target for the loss of a much cheaper unit!

Genestealer Cults players will also have access to the Deliverance Broodsurge, representing flotillas of Goliath Trucks brimming with Hybrids.

If you’ve been looking for an excuse either to begin or build up a collection of Ghost Warriors, look no further than this Specialist Detachment. First up, the Revered by the Dead Warlord Trait will enable nearby Wraith Constructs to re-roll charge rolls – a huge boon if you favour the awesome melee power of Wraithblades or suitably tooled up Wraithlords and Wraithknights. Once there, you can empower them even further with the Wrath of the Dead Stratagem:

If your Asuryani hail from Saim-Hann, or simply like to ignore such paltry concerns as gravity, you can even field a Windrider Host to give your jetbike and Vyper-mounted Craftworlders a handy, thematic boost.

With the Speedwaaagh! very much at the vanguard of the Ork attack on Vigilus, there simply had to be the option for a Kult of Speed Specialist Detachment. Unsurprisingly, all of the associated rules benefit your adrenaline-fuelled Speed Freeks, from a trait that renders Kult of Speed units within 12” of your Warlord immune to Morale tests provided they Advanced (that’s your Warbikers sorted!), to the Turbo-Boostas Stratagem that enables a unit to double its Move characteristic instead of Advancing for 2 Command Points! And check out the awesome relic that turns your Deffkilla Wartrike into Skargim’s Snazztrike – a super-tough kustom job:

But there’s much more – Ork players are also getting three other Specialist Detachments in Vigilus Defiant: the Dread Waagh!, Blitz Brigade and the brutal Stompa Mob.

Tomorrow, we’ll be looking at the Specialist Detachments available to the Imperial defenders of Vigilus, so be sure to check back then. In the meantime, Tooth and Claw will see you right for an Anointed Throng, Wake the Dead will provide you with a Spiritseer and Wraithguard, and Speed Freeks will set you up for a Kult of Speed (and a fun standalone game to boot!) – all of which are available now.

What do you all think about these new developments? 

And remember, Frontline Gaming sells gaming products at a discount, every day in their webcart!



About Reecius

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

7 Responses to “Xenos Specialist Detachments – Rules Preview”

  1. Avatar
    Ujayim December 5, 2018 8:46 am #

    I’m all about that GSC Detachment.

    You can do so much control with Aberrants. Charge the shooty units, they can’t charge with their melee units, otherwise you net a bonus 2 rounds of combat from them.

    Very, very cool.

  2. Avatar
    Andrew December 5, 2018 10:58 am #

    Wraith Host stratagem seems good but also boring. “Re-roll 1s to hit”, “add 1 attack”, “add 1 to wound” all amount to the same thing. I was hoping for something a bit more creative. Something that would change the way Wraith units interact with each other or other craftworld units.

    • Avatar
      abusepuppy December 5, 2018 11:52 pm #

      It mandates being Iyanden, which currently is… pretty bad. CA might change the numbers on that some (or maybe not), but it’s a fairly significant limitation as things stand.

      • Avatar
        Anggul December 6, 2018 5:09 am #

        I imagine it’s to make Iyanden more appealing.

        • Reecius
          Reecius December 6, 2018 8:38 am #

          Exactly, and it is a cool thematic way to play.

  3. Avatar
    AllHail December 6, 2018 12:56 am #

    I’m a little worried now, I was hoping that they would prevent the specialist detachment from granting CP, so that they at least costed 1 CP + a detachment slot. It’s hard for me to see how these aren’t auto-takes in any army that wants to use units that benefit from the detachment Stratagems. If you are bringing even a single unit of Wraithblades or even Wraithguard spending 1 CP to be able to give them an extra attack on demand for 1 more CP seems like an easy choice, and I think their is more than one stratagem for each specialist detachment.

    The only good news is that they said the detachments will only grant keywords to interact with new Stratagems and WTs. Now I just have to get some Drukhari and spam Agents of Vect so I can pretend they don’t exist.

    • Faitherun
      Faitherun December 6, 2018 2:20 pm #

      I’m not as sure they will be an auto include..

      The detachment is 1 cp to change the keywords. Then its another cp to get a 2nd warlord trait. You are probably taking the detachment for either the trait, relic, stratagem, or some combination there of. Which can get costly

      With the reduction in cp regeneration, cp is again a valuable commodity. And the moment I take that detachment, I pretty much tip my hand to my opponent.

      Not saying these are bad per se, but rather using these specialist detachments will require some thought, which I think is a good thing.

      That being had, I do wish they would have included them all in the years chapter approved.

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