Kirb your enthusiasm!


"Pink isn't a color. It's a lifestyle." - Chumbalaya
"...generalship should be informing list building." - Sir Biscuit
"I buy models with my excess money" - Valkyrie whilst a waitress leans over him

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Email in: Tyranid Warrior Needs Food, Badly!

"Hey Kirb (or any of the cheery fellows at the 3++ blog),

I've really enjoyed the articles that are hosted on the 3++ page, very informative. However I've recently run into a quandary. I'm kicking around the idea of making a Tyranid army, and I think that the warrior broods are really shiny. It could be that I'm new to the 'Nids or that I've yet to really grasp the content of their Codex, but it seems to me that the Warrior broods are one of the most versatile units in the book. I scoured the web, but haven't really run into anything that mentions a list quite like the one i'm planning, but that can easily be because I don't know what I'm doing. Is there a good reason why I don't see too many Warrior broods on the table? To give you a better frame work to operate on here is a sample 1750 list that I'm thinking of building.


5 Warriors (Choppy)

4 Warriors (Shooty)
Barbed Strangler

4 Warriors (Shooty)
Barbed Strangler

10 Termagants (Shooty Screen)

10 Hormagaunts (Choppy Screen)


2 Hive Guard

2 Hive Guard

Rupture Cannon

Trygon Prime



I "THINK" I have the bases covered. TFex, Harpy, and Guard for anti tank. Trygon Prime for in your face chomping. Choppy warrior broods and Shooty warrior broods... Short gribblies for screens, Tervigon for a big tough monster to move off of an obj...

I'm not sure of the effectiveness of such a list. I've read the Tyranid dex through a few times, and I think they'd be a fun army to play. But again, I've never used them before and I'd like to know a bit more before I just dump a bunch of money on a terrible list build. Please let me know if i'm way off on my reasoning. Thank you in advance!


Heya, Matt, glad you like the blog. I've talked about Warriors a bit before- such in reply to this email- but I still need to get my New Breed article on Warriors finished. You are indeed correct that Warriors tend to get overlooked compared to the other troop choices, but I think it's the fear of the Missile Launcher that keeps most people away from them.

Your list isn't bad, but I think it lacks focus- you have a weird mix of units and roles going on here. It isn't sure whether it's a shooting list or a melee one (which can work, since... Tyranids), but it also has a mix of aggressive and passive units and other problems. I think we can keep the core of it, though, as it does a lot of stuff right.

Tyranid Primes are an awesome unit if you're running Warriors, and quite good even if not. (As a side note, you have your listed as 115pts with LW/BS and Regen; presumably you also meant with Toxin as well, since that brings you to the right cost and is a natural inclusion?) I would strongly consider running a second, as they add a lot to the list.

Warriors themselves come in either choppy or shooty. Choppy Warriors MUST strike before I4 if you want them to do their best- T4/4+ just isn't enough protection, and ASM and Grey Hunters will tear you up otherwise. So, if we want to go budget, we can get Adrenal + Twin Swords, which is reasonable at 45pts/model. However, I like LW/BS+Toxin, which makes you a very dangerous threat to anything you come in contact with, since you've got three attacks, hitting on threes, and wounding on 4s with reroll. It also mitigates the effects of charging into cover somewhat, which is an advantage over Adrenal+Swords.

Shooting Warriors, on the other hand, are going to be your objective-takers; I like the three-strong squad with Deathspitters and a Venom Cannon for its ability to suppress transports. However, if you see very few mechanized lists in your area, Barbed Stranglers are one of our few long-range guns and really make Tau, IG, and Footdar unhappy. Since they are of minimal cost and do their main functions (claiming objectives, providing Synapse) just fine when motionless, you are free to Go to Ground if anyone starts shooting missiles at them, which makes you hilariously tough. Larger squads are possible as well, but I wouldn't go past four or five on either choppy or shooty.

Ten Hormagaunts is probably needless; I would say either bump the squad up or drop it entirely, as right now if doesn't really provide enough bodies to do major screening duties, nor can it be expected to threaten anything if ignored. (You need bodies for screening to ensure there are no gaps when preventing a charge, or when providing cover to prevent a few casualties from exposing the units behind.)

The AT in this list is definitely a bit light and the Tyrannofex seems slightly unnecessary, given the low MC count for him to shield. (He doesn't help our Warriors as much as some other MCs because he isn't a good target for Missiles.) The Harpy also doesn't have many friends to hide behind, meaning we can potentially mess with both of them.

So let's give this a shot, and try and make it different from our other Warrior lists. We want something running a decent number of T4 bodies that also has MC backup to make things difficult.

1 Tyranid Prime (LW/BS, Tox, Regen)
1 Tyranid Prime (LW/BS, Tox, Regen)
2 Hive Guard
2 Hive Guard
2 Hive Guard
4 Warriors (LW/BS, Claws, Tox)
4 Warriors (Deathspitter, VC)
4 Warriors (Deathspitter, VC)
20 Hormagaunt
10 Termagant
1 Tervigon (Cluster, Catalyst)

This is basically our framework- from here, we have slightly less than 400pts to customize things. We can add more Hive Guard to deal with tanks, a Tervigon (by dropping the Hormagaunts) for even more scoring and MCs, a Harpy or two (and switching the Hormagaunts to Gargoyles) for some long-range potential and MC saturation. We could also focus on the assault with a pair of Trygons (not Primes- we already have plenty of Synapse) or add in the possibility of Fexstars with some Dakkafexes (two pairs Devourers, for those not familiar with the 4E terminology.) Having our FA slots open means we could also field a LOT of Raveners or Shrikes, which can be really difficult for people to stop from charging, especially when you have tons of other things for them to shoot.

In short, there are tons of ways to try a list like this. While it may not be Ultra Maximum Competitive 9000, it is not a weak list, either, and can prove quite frightening in the right hands. The key to making Warriors work is to give the opponent lots of targets and keep everything focused- so really, just like any other list.

Hope this hasn't been too vague for you, Matt; if you have a particular style of list or models you'd like to see, I'm happy to oblige, but I wanted to leave some freedom in what to do with things to you. I think you've done quite well in your readings of the Tyranid codex, and that you'll find most of the internet has read it once and dismissed it immediately as somehow "bad." Truth is, it's a lot deeper than that, so I'm glad to see there are still folks out there who give the book a proper chance and look to do interesting things with it.

Follow us on Facebook!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...