Sunday, 18 January 2015

Analysis: Renegades and Heretics Elites Choices

The elites section of any army generally contains the toughest fighters, skilled specialists and medium-sized monsters. The choices in Imperial Armour Thirteen are no different, as today we delve into the Elites section of the Renegades and Heretics army list. I won’t be looking at the Daemon Engines (Blood Slaughterer and Blight Drone) as they’re technically extra units for Chaos Space Marine and Chaos Daemons armies.

Renegade Marauders

Marauders appear to be true space pirates: a ruthless unit in it for the money alone. With a higher than average weapon-skill and access to plenty of specialist weapons and a flying transport (Avrus) as well as the Chimera, this unit is ideal for specialising in certain tasks. Brutes (semi-Ogryn-like models) can be added to the unit as tough multi-wounded meat shields, giving the squad added survivability. The unit gets one free specialisation as part of their rules: either Stalkers (Outflank, Stealth, Move Through Cover), Murder Cultsits (Furious Charge and Crusader), or Hereteks (4+ save and Krak Grenades).

The downside of this unit is the In It For The Money rule: if they fail a leadership test (the unit is given an average automatic leadership of eight), they will never regroup afterwards. So your highly tooled up unit could simple disappear. For damage limitation, it is probably best to avoid buying every upgrade under the sun.

Suggested load out: eight Marauders, two brutes, two flamers, breacher charge, Arvus Lander dedicated transport, Heretek perk. (225 points)

Ogryn Brutes

Ogryn Brutes are exactly what you expect them to be: big lumbering brutes who tan take a beating, and give a stern beating back. At 60 points per model before upgrades, they are on the pricey side but when you remember that they can potentially have up to seven attacks each on the charge (before upgrades), plus hammer of wrath attacks, a unit of these monsters can deal a fair bit of damage. Random attacks have changed, so now you only roll once for the whole unit. As well as this, they no longer inflict self-harm because of their random attacks and have Frag grenades. On the downside, they’ve lost their natural Feel No Pain. They start off with no armour save, but can be upgraded to have flak or carapace armour, and Feel No Pain via the mark of nurgle.

Speaking of marks, you now have access to all four of the chaos gods, not just Khorne and Nurgle. The two new marks add interesting  buffs, Slaanesh giving fleet, and Tzeentch giving extra arms, which provides a +1 attack bonus.

Other new options include the Lascutter and Power Drill. These weapons trade in all attacks for one powerful one. Personally I preferred the old fashioned power weapons, and can’t see myself using either. Hounds on the other hand are a great option. At half the cost of Ogryns, Hounds add cheap extra wounds to the unit, have a higher initiative to get in some attacks first, and automatically have three attacks, so you guarantee a good number of hits should your Ogryns roll poorly. They also grant the Run Them Down rule, which gives the unit a bonus dice for Sweeping Advances. This unit, whilst expensive, can give your Renegade army a much demanded combat ability. Whilst you can take a unit of ten plus five dogs, this will get really expensive really fast.

Suggested load out: three Ogryns, carapace armour, packmaster, three Chaos Hounds (235 points)

Chaos Spawn

…there’s not much to say about them that you don’t already know from Codex: Chaos Space Marines; a tough, randomly beneficial combat unit. The Spawn in this book are only available if you have the Mutant Overlord or the Covenant of Tzeentch on your Command Squad. They are also discounted over the marine variants, but have no access to either options or unit size. Their best feature is that you can get a full squad of three for the cost of one Ogryn, so if you need to cut back on points but want a hard hitting combat unit, Spawn are for you. If you have the points though, I’d rather go with Ogryns.

Suggested (and only) load out: three spawn (55 points)

Renegade Disciples

Disciples are this book’s Veteran Guard (though Veterans are also this books Veterans, but they’re different, honest!). With a higher Ballistic skill, this unit is set up for shooting, compared to the Marauder’s combat potential. They have access to heavy weapons, including flakk missiles, which makes this one of the few anti-air options in the book. The unit doesn’t have any fancy-pants rules apart from the Fanatic rule, which gives you the chance to re-roll your leadership value if you’re not happy with it.

The downside to this unit is that is isn’t very…exciting, when compared to the outlandish Marauders or tough-skinned Ogryns. In a way, it is a sensible option for sensible people. It’s not to say that it is a bad unit, but it may get overlooked by other choices which offer something different.

Suggested load out: ten Disciples, missile launcher with frag, krak and flakk missiles, plasma gun, chaos sigil, chaos covenant of Nurgle, carapace armour. (170 points)

Next week, the Troops section will be dissected for your amusement.


  1. Can you find the rules for the breacher charge? Im struggling. .

    1. Hi Chris. I found it on page two of this document for the Tyrant's Legion army:

    2. Cheers. Not the obvious place to look. I've got the rules for legion ones but can't be sure its the same.