Everyone’s favorite cult of tainted, mutant supermen with crazy eyes and demo charges gets its own 8th Edition preview.
That’s right! Courtesy of Reece and GW, we’ve got a look at Genestealer Cults in 8th Edition. The big question, just how many demo charges can you fit in one army, isn’t answered. But it looks like they’ve got a lot to bring to the table besides explosions in the new edition. Take a look!
via Warhammer Community
To begin with, let’s talk about their ambush ability. That’s one of the things that characterizes the army–it represents the insidious nature of the genestealer lifecycle–and it perfectly exemplifies why the Emperor is right to warn his subjects to fear the mutant and the Xenos. Genestealer Cultists are a bit of both, and they are capable of turning up where you least expect them.
Cult Ambush allows you to place Genestealer Cults units into reserves and then enter the game through a variety of means determined by a D6 chart. These range in effect from coming on to a table edge to being able to appear anywhere on the table more than 9” away from any enemy units but being able to move as well, allowing you to get extremely close to enemy units to shoot and then charge them as well. For units like Genestealers or Aberrants armed with power picks and rending claws, this can be punishing!
I’m not sure how swingy the D6 chart will be. It seems like there’s a potential for it to either wreck shop or inconvenience the GSC player, depending. I suppose you wouldn’t want to bank on your enemies getting the “I’m in ur base, killing ur mans” roll every time, but having those options does suggest the potential to be devastating. Especially when you see how hard those Aberrants hit:
At Strength 5, -2 AP, and with a d3 for damage, a squad of these guys could really tear their way through the table.
Then add to that the might and psychic influence of a Patriarch and you’ve got a force to be reckoned with that can’t be easily dealt with. The Patriarch is capable of holding his armies together under the most intense conditions with his psychic powers and has a Lookout, Sir! rule to protect him from sniper fire and other vagaries of the battlefield.
The Patriarch also allows nearby units to ignore morale, and he benefits from the Unquestioning Loyalty special rule which all Genestealer Cults Characters posses. This allows them to avoid taking a wound on a 4+ as a minion sacrifices its life and jumps in front of the attack.
Did your enemies bring flamers or other overwatch friendly weapons to the party? Well, Genestealers are great at getting themselves stuck in, thanks to Mass Hypnosis which really borks your opponent’s day.
Another nasty trick the Genestealer Cults have is their Mass Hypnosis psychic power, which prevents an enemy unit from firing Overwatch, makes them strike last in combat (even if they charged) AND gives them -1 to hit. Ouch! That leaves an enemy unit in a very compromised position as the minions of the Four-armed Emperor emerge from ambush and then run them through in melee.
And then to top it off, Genestealer Cults will be able to build their armies from multiple keywords. I think this may be one of their strongest qualities. They can mix with Astra Militarum forces but still be able to form a Battle Forged army to take advantage of stratagems. There are some limitations, but, fighting the Genestealer Cults means fighting the Imperial Guard, at times.
You can take one Astra Militarum Detachment for each Genestealer Cults Detachment in your Battle-forged army. They each need to be entirely comprised of units with their respective keyword, but this allows incredible amounts of diversity in your army that is also quite characterful.
You can check out the rest of the article for a full preview of the faction. But man, this looks like it’ll be a flexible, melee-focused army that’s able to get where it needs to go and cover holes in its lists with some “fallen” Guard. I guess, much like the cultists it comprises, the Genestealer Cults faction is pretty sexy.
Oh and, make sure to guard all your denim.