Sunday, February 13, 2011

Pure Grey Knights

First, make sure to check the previous rumor thread.  It's currently 2:12am over here and Commissar posted a bunch of new rumors.  This post, however, will deal with building a pure Grey Knight force with the new codex. That's right, pure GK, forget all that Inquisition stuff.. even though the Vindicare Assassin is so crazy good it's outrageous.

Here's all the "pure" Grey Knight info that's needed to start building army lists:

Grand Master - 175 points
WS6 BS6 S4 T4 W3 I5 A3 Ld.10 2+/4++
The Grand Strategy is the ability of the Grand Master to give one of four special rules to D3 units (Infantry, Jump Infantry, MCs, or Walkers, NOT Inquis. Warbands, ICs, or Modrak's Ghost Knights). The rules are:
-Hammer of Righteousness: Nominated unit re-rolls to wound rolls of 1 for the duration of the game
-Shield of Blades: Target unit gets Counter Attack
-Spear of Light: Target unit gets Scouts
-Unyielding Anvil: Target unit gains Scoring

Brother Captain - 150 points
Same as GM except for -1BS
BC and GM can take Psycannon, Incinerator, Psilencer, Servo Skulls (Up to 3), Blind Grenades, meltabombs, digi weapons, psybolt ammo, empyraen brain mines, psychostroke or rad grenades, and an Orbital Strike Relay. Oh and MC weapons. And all three are alll in Termi armour.

Librarian - 150 points for Lv.2, +50 points for Lv.3
See GM stat line -1 WS -2 BS -1W -1I -1A

Hammer Hand: +1 strength in Close Combat
Warp Quake: Any deepstriking unit that lands within 12" suffers automatic mishap.
Holocaust: S5 AP - Large Blast 12"
Quicksilver: Unit becomes Initiative 10
Warp-Rift: Template that auto removes models from play
The Summoning: A single friendly unit that is anywhere on the table is placed within 6" of the librarian and counts as deepstriking.
Smite: As C:SM
Might of Titan: Beginning of librarians assault phase. Unit within 6" gains +1 str and extra D6 armour pen vs vehicles. Bonus is cumulative with hammerhand.
The Shrouding: Opponents shooting phase. All units within 6" gain stealth (minimum 5+ cover in the open).
Mind Blades: Start of any assault phase. One enemy unit within 6" loses 1 toughness for the rest of the assault phase.
Vortex of Doom: As C:SM
Sanctuary: Enemy assault phase. Enemy units wishing to assault any Grey Knight within 12" of librarian must make a difficult AND dangerous terrain test.
Psychic Communion (Grandmaster and Captain only): Take a psychic test. If passed, you may modify any reserve rolls by + or -1.
Heroic Sacrafice (Brotherhood Champion only): In assault, when the champion dies take a psychic test. If passed, make one attack against any one model that was in B2B with him. If the attack hits, that model is instantly removed!
Cleansing Flame (Purifiers only): Start of any assault phase. All enemy models that are part of the same assault suffer a wound on a 4+ before any blows are struck with saving throws allowed. Casualties count towards combat resolution.
Astral Aim (Purgation Squad only): Shooting Phase. Unit and attached characters may fire at any unit in range and regardless of line of sight. Target automatically gets a 4+ cover save that cannot be modified.
Reconstruction (Techmarines only): Beginning of techmarine's movement. Re-roll any repair roll.
Fortitude (Vehicle only): At the start of Grey Knight player's turn, removes any shaken or stunned results.
Zone of Banishment (Captain Stern only): During Stern's assault phase. All other models (friend and foe) within 6" make a strength test or are removed from play. Daemons must re-roll passed tests.

Brotherhood Champion - 100 points
The Perfect Warrior: In the assault phase, after the move but before the hits, the Brotherhood Champ MUST select a stance from the following list:
-Sword Storm - The BC makes an attack on all models in B2B contact with him (But he doesn't get the bonus for charging)
-Blade Shield - Can't attack, but gets to reroll ALL failed saves until the end of the phase
-Rapier Strike - Champ makes D3 (Or D3+1 if he charged) attacks at I10 that MUST be directed at an MC or Independent Character in B2B contact.

Lord Draigo: WS 7 BS 6 S 5 T 5 W 4 I 5 A 5 Ld 10 Sv 2+ Points 275
Wargear: Titan Sword (str 10 vs demons and psykers), Storm Shield, Frag, Krak, Psyk-out grenades
Options: ?
Special Rules: Lord of Titan (take Paladins as troops), Psychic Mastery 2, Eternal Warrior
Psychic Powers: Hammer Hand, Psychic Communion, Cleansing Flame

Castellan Garran Crowe - 150 points
-Head and Brotherhood Champion of the Purifier Order
-Wielder of The Blade of Antwyr, a super daemon sword that not only attracts heretics and daemons like flies, but tries to corrupt and possess the wielder, thus it was entrusted to the Purifiers to keep safe. Crowe is the only one with the fortitude to keep it under control.
-Stats: 8 4 4 4 2 6 * 10 2+
-150 pts
-The reason for the * on his A slot is because he has the same "The Perfect Warrior" ability that Brotherhood Champs have
-Artificer Armour; Frak, Krak, and Psyk-Out Nades, Storm Bolter; Iron Halo
-The Blade of Antwyr: Close Combat Weapon, but the turn his unit GETS assaulted they gain Furious Charge and re-roll all failed to hit rolls for that Assault Phase
-Master Swordsman: His CC attacks are Rending and Rend on a 4+
-All the rules a regular Broterhood Champ has
-Purifiers are TROOPS with Castellan Crowe

Brother-Captain Stern - 200 points
-Stern is NOT a Mephiston like beast. The idea makes me chuckle. He is good though.
-Standard Brother Captain Statline & Equipment
-Strands of Fate: Stern can reroll one to hit, to wound, or saving throw die PER PHASE. However, for every one you chose to roll, your enemy can reroll one of his own later in the game.
-Zone of Banishment: Psychic Power used in the assault phase in place of his CC attacks. ALL models within 6" (Friendly and enemy, and himself!) must take a Strength test. Those that fail are dragged into the Warp AKA removed from play. Daemons must reroll successful saves.

Grand Master Mordrak - 200 points
-6 6 4 4 4 5 4 10 2+
-He has the usual GM equipment plus a MC Daemonhammer (The bigger, nastier version)
-Usual GM rules
-First to the Fray: If he deploys via Deepstrike, he and his unit arrive first turn and does not scatter
-Ghostly Bodyguard: These be Ghost Knights. They count as Terminators (Regular, not Paladin) but have Stealth, one unit only. Mordrak acts as an upgrade character for them until such point as they are all dead. If Mordrak suffers an unsaved wound, at the end of the phase roll a d3. If the result is equal to or greater than his remaining wounds a Ghost Knight appears. You place it in coherent with him and it counts as part of his unit. Default wargear, no upgrades. Placed in B2B contact with the enemy unit Modrak is fighting or within 1" of him otherwise. If you don't have a GK on hand, or there's no room, they don't materialize. It's possible to materialize mid assault apparently, and if the GK does, he can make an attack if the wound was caused by an attack of I5 or higher. If not, he just appears. If Mordrak dies, the Ghost Knights go bye bye.
-Ghost Termies are 32ppm and can take normal termie upgrades.

Grey Knight Strike Squad - 100 points for 5 dudes including Justicar, 5-10 max
20ppm after for each one, 10pts for a Psycannon, 20 for Incinerator, 1 special weapon per 5 guys in the squad.

Grey Knight Purgation Squad - 100 points for 5 dudes including Justicar, 5-10max
Free Incinerators, +10 for Psilencers, +20 for Psycannons

Grey Knight Purifier Squad - 120 points for 5 dudes including leader, 5-10max
24ppm after, Purifiers are WS4, have Cleansing Flame, is +1A, +1Ld vs. a GKSS and can take free Incinerators.  Their Halberds also cost +2 points instead of +5.

Grey Knight Terminator Squad - 200 points for 5, 40ppm after, 5-10 max
Every 5 can take a special weapon.  Warding Staves count as NEMESIS weapons and thus follow the "ANY model" heading.

Grey Knight Paladin Squad - 55ppm, 1-10 max
+75 points for the Apothecary upgrade, every 5 can take a special weapon.  Warding Staves, same thing.


Brothers!  Strike for the Chapter and the Inquisition!

Before we continue, we must think about two key aspects of the Grey Knights' rumor:  The fact that Storm Bolters count as a pistol (so +1CCW/BP attack bonus) and the fact that the Nemesis Warding Staff gives a 2++ invulnerable save.  These two prospects are ridiculously powerful and I'm doubtful that they're true.  Why?  Because it would make our basic Grey Knight absolutely vicious in combat.. with 2 attacks base, 3 on the charge with Power Weapon-equivs.  This would also mean that our Terminators will have 3 attacks base because the +1CCW/BP bonus works for Terminators.  Paladins come to mind here because 3 WS5 attacks striking at I5 because of Halberds are insane.  Lastly, the Nemesis Warding Staff:  A straight-up 2++ invulnerable save that counts as a power weapon is just too powerful.  The fact that Terminators and Paladins have access to these and can be taken on any member of the team just smells of broken.  Imagine a full unit of 10 Paladins with 10 of these.  It's a point sink unit for sure, but the unit is literally invincible.  Not to mention the Grand Master can make them scoring..

Let's take a look at our HQ choices for a second.
For 175 points, we get a Terminator-armored Grand Master with 2+/4++.  His ability to make units scouts, count as scoring, have counter-strike and re-roll 1s to wound is absolutely fantastic.  The BC is no longer a viable choice because for 25 points more, we get a GM.

The Librarian is also a fantastic buy for 150 since he also comes with Terminator armor.  If you upgrade him to Lv.3 Mastery, he gets to use 3 psychic powers a turn.  Better yet, he gets access to the Nemesis Warding Staff which gives him a 2++ invulnerable save.

Which psychic abilities am I looking at?  Quicksilver, Might of Titan and Mind Blades.  The Summoning, Sanctuary and Warp-Rift also come into mind here.  Why?  Because I10 on your entire unit in the assault phase removes all high I CC counters to your GKs.  Harlequins, Genestealers, Wyches, not a problem.  Might of Titan gives you 2d6 to armor pen for all vehicles and +1S that stacks with Hammerhand.  You cast this while your GKT cast Hammerhand and things just fall over dead.  Mind Blades reduces the toughness of a unit within 6" by 1?  You cast Quicksilver, Might and Mind Blades and your unit casts Hammerhand and you get S6 vs. T3 (MEQ) Power Weapons that strike at I10 and cause instant death because of double toughness.

Summoning brings Paladins to your aid whenever you need, Sanctuary keeps them safe from being charged and makes hordes cry even more than Purifiers, and Warp-Rift just sinks of blue cheese.

For generic HQs, the Librarian and the Grand Master are fantastic buys for your army.  The above speaks for itself.

Now what about Special Characters?
Stern take can a seat because BC stats and a psychic ability that rapes your units as well is his is not welcomed in my army of elites.

Lord Draigo is crazy expensive at 275 points, but comes with all the right tools to make good use of his points.  EW, T5 W4 with 2+/3++ makes him virtually a god that'll never die.  The fact that he can take Paladins as troops is also amazing because he also has the Grand Strategy that can make them re-roll all 1s to wound or give them counter-attack.  If you need more lols, you can give them Scout and have them outflank uncomfortably into your enemies' army.  Cleansing Flame keeps hordes at bay and S10 vs Daemons and Psykers is just all kinds of funny.  Is he a good buy?  At the same points of Logan Grimnar, I'd say hell yes he is if you're taking a Paladin heavy army.

My favorite SC out of the bunch is probably Grand Master Mordrack.  He is the same as any Grand Master except for the fact that he DS on the 1st turn at pin-point accuracy.  In addition, he can take 32pt Terminators and they can be upgrade to whatever you want.  What does this mean?  You DS next to someone's vehicles on turn1 with 2x Psycannons and Warding Staves to keep them occupied.  With your Grand Mastery, you can give Paladins Scout so they start awfully close to your opponents or give them the ability to score in later game.  The best thing about Mordrack is that his Terminators are Stealth.  You DS half of your dudes in cover or behind some form of cover and all of a sudden you're dealing with 3++ cover Termies.  If you have to take dangerous terrain tests, you put the wound on Mordrack and he might gain another free termie.  The most ridiculous thing about Mordrack is that I hear he's a upgrade character to his Ghost Terminators.  What does this mean?  It means as a upgrade character, he loses his IC status and thus he can't be picked out.  He's just like Lukas, Arjac or LeMartes.  A Grand Master level character that can't be picked out just sounds wrong to me.

How does Mordrack work with the rest of your army?  Oh, I don't know.  Maybe he can play ping pong with the Librarian-led Paladin squad w/ The Summoning?  Or maybe he's just one big distraction that you're opponents can't ignore.  There's no way people are going to ignore Hammerhand GKT with 2x Psycannons in your backfield.  This is fact.

Last, we'll talk about the special Chaplain aka Brotherhood Champion.  WS8 with a 2 wounds and 2+/4++ isn't that bad.  I'm not too fond of his special stances, but I do like his special rules and cost.  First, at 150 points, I think he's a great buy.  Why?  Because he makes Purifiers troops and has rending on a 4+.  Cleansing Flame can keep enemy hordes at bay, especially if he's going to stick in a unit of Paladins.  You take him and Grand Master and you have all kinds of awesome in your army.  Check it out:  Grand Master gives Paladins Counter-attack and Crowe gives them Furious Charge and re-rolls to hit when they get charged.  Who in the right mind would want to charge a unit that has Hammerhand, I5, 4 attacks each and Furious Charge?  This would mean a full unit of 10 Paladins with Halberds is putting out 40 attacks of WS5, S6 and I6 with re-rolls to hit with Cleansing Flame.  Stupid insanely ridiculous?  I think so.  At this rate, Garran Crowe will never get to use his Heroic Sacrifice.

Now that HQs have been covered, let's look at the units.  Keep in mind that the SB counting as +1A is a huge issue.  This is because a basic Grey Knight that costs 20 points has a Power Weapon and 3 attacks on the charge.  Compare this with our WS5 S6 dudes from last edition and it's not even fair.  We came out good this edition (maybe even over the top) if this is true.. which is why this single rumor must be clarified and made true.  Even with only 1 attack, the power weapon attacks with all the psychic augmentation is more than fair.

I'm going to form a unit bucket right now so stay with me:

5x Grey Knights w/ Justicar and Psycannon is 110 points.
A full unit of 10x Grey Knights w/ Justicar and 2x Psycannons is 220 points.  Take a Rhino for 35 points and you got a effective, awesome unit for 255 points.  I honestly can care less about Incinerators for these guys because Purgation units do it for so much cheaper and better.

5x Purgation is 100 points for a Justicar and 4x Incinerators.  Add in a Razorback for them for them at 40 points (thinking TL Incinerator) and you're looking at a unbeatable, face-frying unit for 140 points.

5x Purifiers is 120 for a Knight of the Flame and 4x more mans.. so I'll probably run 10x for 240 w/ 2x free Incinerators in a Rhino.

I wouldn't bother taking Grey Knight Terminators unless I'm taking Mordrack.  Let's do some math shall we? Mordrack is 200 points by himself and each of his Termies cost 32 points.  Take them with 2x Psycannons and 2x Warding Staves and you've got a 610 unit of in your face and ready to go action (410 for Termies + 200 for Mordrack).  Commissar said you can't make Ghost Termies scoring with The Grand Strategy or else that would be amazing.  I guess you can also opt to keep them cheap at 320 points for 10, but I'd rather take them with some protection and Psycannons for AV.

Paladins, on the other hand, are utterly ridiculous for what they do.  I know this because I played a sample Vassal game with them where I took Draigo and proxied my existing Grey Knights.  10x Paladins with the Apothecary upgrade, 2x Psycannons and 2x Warding Staves costs 715 points.  They soaked up shooting from an entire 2k army of CSM.  Givent here were no Vindicators or Obliterators, I was still impressed by the amount of damage they soaked up.  One thing's for sure though, they're extremely expensive and can be a huge point sink in armies that don't field a lot of them.  I think the magic number for them is either 5 or 10.  Even though a big unit of them can't really die to conventional shooting, they're slow and incapable of being applied at multiple places at once.  That's why I think they're best utilized with Librarians since The Summoning can help bring them to more important/strategic locations.

That's what I got so far guys, I'll whip up some army lists in another post.


HERO said...

Hey Adam,

I agree on that assessment. I really hope the SB rumor and the Nemesis Warding Staff rumor isn't true. 3 attacks with Power Weapons on the charge for a basic Grey Knight and 4 from Purifiers and Terminators is a little... strong. And 2++ with no downsides on a T4 model is just too good.


Anonymous said...

so ive been waiting to start an army for a year now and ive read the books and grey knights are badass. is it worth having my first army a grey knight one?

HERO said...

They were my first army and pure Grey Knights back in 4th was god awful. I say why not!

Anonymous said...

i was talking with my local games workshop and he said right now a win loss ratio for a current grey knights force is about 50/50. will this codex make them a stronger army?

HERO said...

That completely determines on what kind of players you have in your area and what kind lists they take. When I had Grey Knights, I spent the better half of my day footslogging into Mechdar, Dual Lash and Nidzilla. Now it's time for payback.

Grimz said...

Great post mate, hope to read more like this!

Wulfy said...

I have to say I was initially dubious about Draigo, but if he does indeed come with Grand Strategy I will be taking him. Getting a seriously tough HQ with cleansing flame and troop Paladins, plus all the strategic abilities of a Grand Master for just 100 pts more is too good to pass up.

I'm currently thinking:

4 5-man Grey Knight squads with Psycannon
2 Dreadknights
and then as many Paladins as I can fit in.

The Raf said...

The rumours sound awesome and cool, I have played this army happily for years and my biggest excitement from the new codex comes in the sheer number of strategic options the army appears to gain. On the other hand, people are being a little too short-sighted about some of the units - yes most of them are awesome but averaging 700 pts per "full" unit of things like Paladin termies or squard + Special Character + vehicle means basic shooty armies will have to kill even fewer models to beat it. Make no mistake, Grey Knights will be just as challenging to play in this new incarnation as in the old...

smithmyster666 said...

i can see GK being so much better now, i only used to lose with my GK against the most horrendous of armies, such as chaos with obliterator and thousand sons spam, IG with leman russ spam etc, and even then, i still ran them all the way to the last turn and any victories were always close. they were so much better in 4th edition, but make no mistake, when the new toys land in the army, our boys are going to have a field day.

Anonymous said...

Hello, uber SM flavor of the month.

The Raf said...

On a side note, why do some of our HQ characters have barely 3 attacks or so? The Grand Master has only 3 attacks for 175 pts at STR4 (+1 from Hammerhand) - how does this fall at all in line with things like Daemon Princes that have more attacks at higher base STR for far less points? I hope I'm just missing something here...

HERO said...

Well, if SB really do give +1 for counting as a pistol, then a GM on the charge will put out 5 attacks base.

The Raf said...

Good point, although if you then give the GM a Psycannon (pretty common now) then you'll lose that. Seems like of lame compared to so many other things in 40k that cost similar or cheaper.

HERO said...

Raf, you can't seriously be complaining about the Grey Knights man. At 175, a 2+/4++ Terminator-armored dude with Frags/Kraks that's both a Psyker and a fighter and has a huge amount of weapon selection and special rules is well worth the points. Any less and he would be imbalanced.

The Raf said...

Yeah maybe I'm getting a little ahead of myself :). The whole army in general looks like it'll be a ton more fun to play with all the cool options, I'll wait until I have my grubby little hands on the codex itself before I start worrying!

Wulfy said...

Also bear in mind that the Grand Master seems more about the support he brings to the army than his personal abilities. Not to say that he won't hit hard, but you bring him for Grand Strategy, Orbital Strikes and so on. If you want a killer character of awesomeness, the SCs can provide that in spades.

Anonymous said...

Any idea what this Psilencer is and its stats?

Anonymous said...

Good CC and yeah no melta...good luck with that.

Pure GK will have a lot of mountain to climb without punt Inquisition humans help. cause they forgot antitank weapons on Mars

Anonymous said...

just wondering, is it 55 points base and then +75 for the apothecary upgrade? 130 points seems way pricey too me for a singel model, no?

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