Blood Angels v2
And They Shall Know No Fear;
Meh, without Combat Tactics this rule becomes a lot less good. Especially so because The Red Thirst (below) can override it. Still, this Codex, being Blood Angels, not being able to be Sweeping Advanced if you lose Assault is still very good.
You wont use it very much.
Descent of Angels;
This rule is nice...If you want to use it. If you don't want to use this rule, it'll be absolutely useless. Unfortunately, this sentiment will be seen a couple more times in regards to this army list.
The Red Thirst
This rule...Kind of sucks. Most Blood Angels lists will field Priests, and thus you get Furious Charge anyway. And Fearless? If you have to gain Fearless at the cost of ATSKNF, it's pretty bad. Since when you have ATSKNF, you can at least try to run away from a losing Assault.
However, in pure Assault-lists that like to foot-slog or Jump without Transports, Fearless is nice because you're going to get shot at.
Second, it's totally random. Which can be really annoying when your Assault Squad doesn't get Furious Charge and Fearless, and then your Devastators do get it on the next roll.
Cheap and come with a Psychic Hood. Lovely.
Blood Boil: Looks better than it actually is.
Fear The Darkness: Doesn't work on Fearless units. Which, sadly, is a good deal of things.
Might of Heroes: Good for a solo Librarian. But, you shouldn't be doing that, and weight of attacks should be done by the squad who is following him around.
Shackle Soul: Like Blood Boil, looks good on paper. Occasionally saves your bacon, but more often just makes your opponent get annoyed by having to stop the flow of play every time he needs to do something. Which, I suppose is a plus.
Shield of Sanguinius: This is very nice. Especially when you're not in a Transport. And merely 'okay' when you are, since most Transports come with Smoke Launchers for a slightly better effect.
Smite: It's not that wonderful under Codex Marines and it's even less good here.
Blood Lance: Amazing or terrible. Depending on dice rolls and who your opponent is.
Sanguine Sword: Used to kill tanks or MCs, I guess. But isn't that what Melta Bombs or the Sergeant-with-Power Fist next to you is for?
Unleash Rage: Brilliant! Especially since you're an Assault army.
Wings of Sanguinius: A 25-point Jump Pack makes this redundant. Can be useful for a Librarian on a Bike though.
This author's picks are Shield of Sanguinius and Unleash Rage.
Basically the squad he's in becomes Fearless (take that Red Thirst!) and makes everything Hit better. With Death Company, they also Wound better.
His Wargear choices aren't that spectacular, but, he comes with a Power Weapon and Bolt Pistol to start.
If you look closely, he's only 15 more points than a Captain with the same Wargear with 1 less Weapon Skill. But you're re-rolling To Hit, so, yeah.
Unfortunately, it's true. The 'leader' of a Blood Angels army just isn't that good. He can walk around in Terminator Armour and get some pretty decent Wargear to go with it. But, you're playing Blood Angels. Is a Terminator Captain really what you want? Just about anything other than that and you're better off with a Reclusiarch for the same job.
Otherwise, take a look at the special characters. Which will follow. If you already have a Captain model, unfortunately, you may need to turn it into a Sergeant model or make your own 'Count As' special character...Don't never use good models if they still look cool!
You get a Priest to go with them, which is pretty cool. If you give them Jump Packs, they come to 165 Points, which isn't too shabby, considering they have two attacks each and come with a free Priest.
You can kit them out like Vanguard (more on that later), but, the problem is that they aren't Vanguard. Honour Guard are a little bit tricky to use, since there are a couple of similar units throughout the Codex.
They are, however, one of the few good units that Blood Angels have that might want to go in a Drop Pod. You can kit them out with Flamers or Meltaguns - or Plasmaguns, considering the free Priest and the FNP - and have them drop down in the first turn and kill something hopefully valuable.
I guess the most important thing about Honour Guard is to keep them cheap. Otherwise, there are those other, better units that I mentioned that can probably do the job for less points.
Pretty much a small-scale Reclusiarch, for the same points as a Captain. Still, it's taking your Elite slot, which, outside of specialised army-builds, isn't exactly the best idea. Just go with a Reclusiarch to begin with.
A single unit is pretty bad. They're basically generalist units with decent guns, decent swords and the ability to attract fire like nobody's business. Without a Stormraven (below), or Dante (discussed later), these guys wont do a whole lot of good. They are shiny though. And, unfortunately a Newbie trap.
Take as many as these guys as you can. Frag Cannons are nice for walking or Podding Dreads. Blood Talons are good for when you're flying in style with a Stormraven. Magna-Grapples are usually must-have items regardless of whatever else you're doing. Heavy Flamers are always a plus over Storm Bolters.
Swap everything for a Librarian Dreadnought;
Generally good, although the HQ Librarians are cheaper. But, if for whatever reason you're not taking an HQ Librarian, definitely take at least one Librarian Dread. Psychic Hoods are just that good.
Might of Heroes: Dreadnoughts are solo characters. So, this can be helpful, but probably not the best thing you could do. Just go with a regular Furioso with Talons.
Shield of Sanguinius: Smoke Launchers.
Blood Lance: Very good on a Drop Podding Dread since you can position yourself in a good spot on Turn 1, and you don't have Meltaguns like a regular Dread.
Sanguine Sword: You've already got one Dreadnought Close Combat Weapon. Don't bother. Against non-vehicles switch to the S6 Force Weapon. And, no. You can't use the DCCW and the Force Weapon at the same time. There are rules for having two different Assault weapons.
Unleash Rage: He doesn't run around with a squad, and he's already WS6. He'll be fine without this.
Wings of Sanguinius: Dreadnoughts are slow without 'Ravens or 'Pods. This helps.
This author's picks are Blood Lance and Wings of Sanguinius. If you have a way to get him where he needs to be quicker, swap Wings for Might of Heroes.
Sanguinary Guard cost the exact same points, can fly and Sweeping Advance.
Terminator Assault Squad;
Furiosos cost less, and can ride in Stormravens. Like I mentioned under the Captain entry; Terminators are not typically what you play Blood Angels for, and, unfortunately, the Codex agrees.
If you run a lot of Dreadnoughts, or want to run a lot of Predators and Razorbacks, this guy can help. He does use up your Elite slots. Handy when you need him, useless when you don't.
Not much can be said about these guys that you wont quickly find out by asking any forum. A popular build with them is Suicide Sternguard, which works in Codex Marines, and works here, now. Basically slap a bunch of Combi-Meltas in a Drop Pod and let them do their thing.
Unfortunately, your Blood Angel Elite slots are typically reserved for Sanguinary Priests (I've mentioned them a few times now, for good reason) and as many slots as you can fill with Furioso/Librarian Dreadnoughts. However, remember when I was talking about Honour Guard? This is basically what this squad can be, without taking your valuable Elite slots. And, I'm sorry New Kid, but your Elite slots in a Blood Angels army are actually quite valuable.
Most people who play Blood Angels, secretly only have two Elite slots and at least 100 points less than they actually have when list-building. Because of Sanguinary Priests. Everyone within 6" of them gets Feel No Pain and Furious Charge. Everyone. for 50 points. Typically Priests occasionally get left in 'Ravens to make their area of effect larger, but, not always.
Anyway, Priests are really, really good. Nearly all Blood Angel players should have at least one for every two units in their army. And, remember the Honour Guard? They come with a 'free' one.
Corbulo is over-priced. Sad face.
Again, not really what you want to play Blood Angels for, since both Codex Marines and Space Wolves have play-styles that suit them better. But, sometimes, it's always nice to have one squad to sit back in your Deployment Zone to fire bullets and stay in cover.
For the most part, a Newbie Trap. The only good reason to take them is access to Death Company Dreadnoughts (below). Never take a non-multiple of five, and only take that many if you can also take as many Dreadnoughts as that allows.
Death Company. Need. Transports. Due to their Rage, they'll almost never have a cover save, so don't worry about getting those. But, importantly, units inside Transports are unaffected by said Rage, which is an enourmous plus because you'll no longer be chasing around Land Speeders. Also, similar to Sanguinary Guard, without a Transport, they tend to attract bullets.
Due to Relentless, they are almost always better with Boltguns. Is it thematic? Not really. But it's very good.
They've also got Feel No Pain and Furious Charge. Well, sure, I guess. But, 5 Death Company (because you also want Dreadnoughts) is 100 points. So is two Sanguinary Priests, which makes everything FNP and Furious Charge. So, don't fall into that trap.
5 with Jump Packs in Stormraven. Add Dreadnought.
10 in Rhino.
15 in Land Raider. Use trip-Dreadnoughts to LoS Block.
There's not a lot to say about Death Company. Well, they're not Scoring, but, that doesn't really make much of a difference since due to Rage they couldn't sit on an objective if they tried.
Lemartes is very, very good. But he's also very, very expensive.
Death Company're not that great. But, if you really like them, see the section on Astorath.
Death Company Dreadnoughts;
Take as many as you're allowed. They also need Transports, whether it be Drop Pods or Stormravens, they should be in them. Unless you have a one-two punch that goes hand-in-hand with a Land Raider full of Death Company.
Yeah, you really do need something that can hold an objective. And Scouts are cheaper than Tactical Squads. They can also pack Sniper Rifles which is handy against Monstrous Creatures.
Unlike Codex Marines, Scouts don't have the option to obtain Fleet or have access to Land Speeder Storms, so, 'Combat Scouts' are not really a good option, despite the fact that you are Blood Angels. Besides, you have other combat units...
Hopefully, these are the reason you want to play Blood Angels, right? No? You want to field the shiny gold guys or the black-and-red guys? Huh, well...Moving on! Pretty much everything in the Codex is designed to make these particular guys, better at what they do. Slice 'n' Dice.
Always take 10. They'll need it. Twin Flamers and Meltaguns are always a solid choice. But, you are Space Marines with FNP (Priests!), so, Plasmaguns are also a good pick too.
Terrain and Assault Squads don't usually mix, so, once again, there's that Priest again with his FNP! Other than that, Librarians also like to give these guys Unleash Rage and Shield of Sanguinius (because sometimes you don't intentionally jump into terrain...).
Like I said; Solid choice to a Blood Angels army. Unless...
You want to take transports. Now, remember, the cost doesn't scale. So, no matter how many models you take, the reduction is always -35 points. The most cost-effective choice is Razorbacks. It's up to you, really. In currency terms, a second box of 5 Assault Marines, and a Razorback cost the same. So, you, New Kid, aren't really wasting any of your money by picking one over the other.
Popular Razorback weapons are the Heavy Flamer, or the Twin-Linked Plasmagun and Lascannon. However, neither of those come packaged with the box. Although, that being said, Meltaguns, Plasmaguns and Flamers don't come packaged with Assault Marines either. /sigh. Unfortunately, this Guide can't help you with that.
But, having said that, having a 'free' Drop Pod land where you want it to with Meltaguns or Flamers inside isn't terrible. Besides, you can't choose Land Raiders individually, and if you like lots of Land Raiders, then Assault Squads are probably the best place to get them.
Unfortunately for everyone involved, for you, for your opponent, for me having to tell you; If you have one Assault Squad, you kind of need more. Whichever way you want to kit them out. You're kind of stuck with cookie cutting and painting a lot of the same model...But, you're playing a Space Marines army, so that'd happen anyway.
An aside for Drop Pods
Due to the way Descent of Angels works, any time you would have more than one Drop Pod, or, any Drop Pods that don't land on the first turn, you're probably better off with a unit that has Descent of Angels. The re-rolls to Reserves means they get on the board sooner, and less Scatter, means...Well less Scatter. I know Inertial Guidance is good and all, and your unit wont crash and die when it hits terrain, but, even so, a 12" Scatter is still a 12" Scatter.
But, anyway, that all comes back to if you want to use DoA, then do so. Otherwise don't.
A lot of the hate directed towards these guys is a carry-over from Codex Marines, where the Codex they were in wasn't designed to support them. Blood Angels, on the other hand, are different.
For one, BA Vanguard are slightly cheaper which is good. And Descent of Angels means the Vanguard are more likely to show up when you need them and they wont fly halfway across the board where they can't use Heroic Intervention. That being said, due to Heroic Intervention, they are one of the most useful units in the book if you want to use Descent of Angels to it's fullest.
The bad, Vanguard are still expensive. 'Less expensive' than Space Marines, but still expensive. Less is more. Now, the average unit might have a Sergeant with a Power Weapon, which usually means between two and three attacks are going to connect with your men. To this end, you want to equip two or three Vanguard with Storm Shields just for Wound Allocation. Now, New Kid, you might not know what that is, but it'll be important when you learn more about the game.
Other than that, use your best judgement; Or copy and paste this. Power Fist. Really, that's it.
Important: When gluing your models together, don't give the guy with the Power Fist a Storm Shield, nor give one to your Sergeant. Again, this has to do with Wound Allocation. But still.
Hopefully if you do it right, your Vanguard wont be shooting a whole lot, and if they are, it's probably by accident. To that end, your models will be awesome if you replace the Bolt Pistol with your Storm Shields. And that way you end up keeping the chainswords. No, it doesn't really have an effect on how your models play (a pistol counts as a Close Combat Weapon anyway), but, WYSIWYG is a real thing and Chainsword + Shield is awesome. Anyway, like I said, you shouldn't be shooting much anyway and a couple of pistol round aren't going to make that much of a difference.
Besides, everyone knows that Awesome Models play better.
PROTIP: The shield in the Assault Squad sprue (of which you've bought lots of, right? Because you're Blood Angels) is actually a Storm Shield, not a Combat Shield. There is no weapon in the hand like the one that comes in the Command Squad box. Besides, there's a couple of pictures in the various Imperial Armour books that says that that's what a Power Armoured Storm Shield looks like.
Anyway, back to Vanguard. You shouldn't really be needing more than five models in the unit. Use them wisely and they'll work. They are a small squad so don't go biting off more than they can chew - like Terminators. Their targets are generally small, shooty units like Devastators and Dark Reapers. When you start taking more than 5 models in the unit...Space Marines can do it better due to access to different things, but, after 5 models, you're probably better off going with one of the other small, Jump Pack equipped unit that the Codex is full of.
Yeah. Good. Just about any set up is 'good'. But, you're not playing with a guy called He'Stan so none of them really stand out above the others except for what the rest of your army is doing. If you need them, great. If you don't, useless.
Basically Predators that cheat. They're fast, and they pack weapons that make use of that speed (Flamestorm Cannons), and they don't take up Heavy Support slots and compete with...Other things.
See Land Speeders. Or Bikes...
Good when you need them, bad when you don't. Bikes move 12" a turn. The majority of your army moves 12" a turn too, except these guys come with T5 and Twin-Linked Bolters. They're a useful alternative when all your Assault Squads are in vehicles, but otherwise...Why not just more Assault Squads that are Scoring?
Infiltrating, Scouting Locator Beacons. Useful for your first turn Drop Pod, or later in the game for your Descent of Angels. Otherwise, yeah, you guessed it. Do you need them? Yes? Great. No? Terrible.
Cheap fire support. Do you need them? On the other hand, what if you want to play with 11 Dreadnoughts? You can!
Costly? Yeah. Worth it? Yeah, that too. If you need them. If all your Jump Pack equipped squads are more than 6 models strong (or more than 5+Independent Character), then you're not going to need them much. Also Dreadnoughts.
They're Fast, and you pay points for it too! Pity you're not going to use that speed a whole lot, and if you were, Baal Predators are better at it.
Yeah. Good. Do you need Stormravens? No? Take these instead.
Fast Ordnance? Pretty fantastic. It's these or Devastators if you aren't using Stormravens.
But I like Sanguinary Guard and Death Company!? Those things are what drew me to blood Angels in the first place!
What You Like == What Is Good
He's actually pretty reasonable on his own. But, obviously, his real benefit comes in when playing with Sanguinary Guard. Sanguinary Guards' ability to take lots of Infernus Pistols, as well as Dante's ability to land exactly where he needs to is very, very good. Enter Dante's Inferno...Yeah, that reference has been around for more than 15 years. If you're only just getting it now, feel free to bang your head into a wall.
See, unlike Meltaguns, Pistols only have a 6" range, and a 3" Super Effective range, and trying to Deep Strike that close to something is usually a recipe for failure. So, Dante makes Sanguinary Guard not terrible.
From there, Sanguinary Guard are Troops. Take at least two more units of them. Unfortunately, Sanguinary Guard are pretty terrible without Stormravens, so you need those too. And, for added bonus, because Sanguinary Guard are no longer taking up Elite slots, you can take Furiosos and Librarian Dreads too!
Unfortunately for new players, this list can not be scaled down because everything in it is pretty much un-take-outable. It easily runs into the 1500+ point mark. So, if you really, really, really want the shiny gold guys, buy lots and start early.
This list is all about spamming those Death Company.
Remember how Death Company get Fearless, Furious Charge and FNP for free? Well, you don't need Priests or Red Thirst rolls, so that's a plus. Also, it's a bit of a kick in the pants when you realise that one of Astorath's abilities is redundant in his own list.
Now, you want three units of Death Company, because three units. Any less than that and you're shooting yourself in the foot. Equip one unit with Jump Packs and whatever weapons you like, grab a Stormraven and a DC Dread, and go from there. This, here, is really the only part of the list that can't change.
The rest, totally scales because Death Company don't need Jump Packs, so they don't need to ride in a Stormraven. If you want to keep it cheap, 5 in a Razorback works. 10 in a Rhino works too, the plus side? The Razorback and the Rhino are the same tank! You don't need to spend more money.
Still, you can put 10 in a Stormraven too. More? Land Raiders.
The list scales. The more models you want? The bigger your tanks get!
And, still, we're not losing the DC Dreads. Now, typically you want your 6 Troops slots to be 3:3 to DC and DC Dreads. If you are running Stormravens, great. If not, Drop Pods.
After that? Well, after you've got your first fifteen Death Company models (for three Dreads), it doesn't quite matter after that. If you need to have 9 models in a Rhino to fit a Chaplain/Reclusiarch into the vehicle (hint, hint), you can do that. Because, in this list, you're not using Priests, and you can fill those slots with Chaplains and Reclusiarchs. You can get three (including Astorath) into any suitably large army because you have three Death Company units and that's what you want. Just make sure you have the minimum 15.
Then, because you're Dread-spamming (minimum three), and you still don't have a Librarian (your HQs are Astorath +/- a second Reclusiarch), you can fit Librarian Dreads into your Elite slots because they have Psychic Hoods and those're brilliant.
Again, this army is something that needs to be built from the ground up. You can't start half your army, then suddenly decide to do this one because what're you going to do with all the models you're no longer using? Still, this army is slightly easier than the Dante army since you're not splurging for the $100 Stormravens from the start. Well, the one. But what about first-turn Melta Drops? Well, if your Dreads aren't doing it for you, there's always Honour Guard.
If you feel like you're losing a lot with this army, it's probably because you are! This army has no Scoring units. If you feel comfortable about it, you can drop a Dreadnought or two for some Home-scoring Scout squads.
Anyway, Astorath scales. Dante doesn't.