40K Breaking: Screamer-Killer Revealed In White Dwarf

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Carnifex variants are returning in the upcoming Tyranid Codex–two have been sighted in White Dwarf.

That’s right. With the Craftworld Codex good and released, it’s time to turn our attention to the tendrils of the Great Devourer, and there’s some fairly exciting news on that front.

In GW’s latest White Dwarf preview, creative writing manager for GW’s design studio, Jes Bickham gives us a preview of the upcoming Codex with a page straight out of the book. An old familiar face makes a reappearance as we get to see none other than the Screamer-Killer roaring back into the fray. And alongside that we get mention that all those Carnifex bits will have purpose again, as well as the mention of a second ‘genofixed variant,’ the Thornback. So it looks like the Niddex will be getting some beefy brawlers and anti-infantry attackers. Let’s dive in.

via Warhammer Community

There’s more – if you prefer your battles on a larger scale, November’s White Dwarf looks at the latest iteration of the Tyranids, catching up with the Design Studio’s Jes Bickham for a detailed preview of the new codex. From the return of the Screamer-Killer Carnifex to new mechanics and more, if you’re a loyal servant of the Hive Mind, then this should give you plenty to get your teeth (or feeder tendrils!) into.

Pretty exciting stuff–it sounds like they want to see Carnifexes be a multipurpose tool again, with their old kit options getting rules. In the article, they call out enhanced senses, bio-plasma, tusks, the “charmingly-named monstrous acid maw,” alongside chitin thorns, spore cyst carapaces, toxin sacs, adrenal glands, spine banks, and more. That’s a good deal more than the Carnifex has in the index, with just toxin sacs and adrenal glands in its current entry.

Plus there’s “a wealth of new ranged and melee options.” What that actually means is anyone’s guess, but, at the very end there they mention the Thornback. And if they’re bringing back those 4th Edition favorites, who knows what else we might see?

The Red Terror and Old One Eye are already in the index–could we be about to see a return of things like the Doom of Malan’tai or the Parasite of Mortrex? Time alone with its terrible curse will tell, but, for now we’re pretty excited around the office. As the saying goes, we just want to predigest this book with acidic spores, so its biomass can be harvested and repurposed for the good of the Hive.

What classic Nid would you want to see terrorize the tabletop again?

  • DoctorBored

    I’m confused. I never played Tyranids but is it that they’re bringing options back that are in the kit but not in the Index?

    • Fenix Dargon

      Pretty much.

      • Bootneck

        Well not really. You can build a “screamer killer” now if you so wish – just take bio plasma and monstrous scything talons.

        I think they have just re-looked at the kit and rehashed the option given that most weren’t ever used.

        So its likely to be more balancing.

        • DoctorBored

          I hope so! I like armies with lots of big monsters. Tyranid Godzilla armies, Space Marine Dreadnought armies, Imperial Knights, Craftworld Iyanden armies, etc. They’re neat to see and fun to play, but having variety in that is important.

        • Jabberwokk


          There talking about 4th ed Carnifex where every bit in the kit had rules attached. This was my favorite and 1st introduction to both the army and 40k as a whole. Carnifexes had Two pages of options. You really felt like The Hive mind engineering the beast, adapting it to your needs.

          What’s funny to me was someone posting a bunch of bits on the Tryanid facebook group asking what are all these things for and me shaking my head.

        • Pedwidge

          The “screamer killer” is a throw back to, at least, 2nd edition when that was the only option.

          It’s nice to look back and see how far the models have progressed since then.

          • Bootneck

            I remember those days well with T9 Carnifex’s and Warpfield made them nigh on unkillable.

            Except for a commissar with a jump pack and a vortex grenade!

    • Apocryphus

      A lot, actually. The kit has 4 or 5 heads, 2 carapace plates, and a bunch of extra spines and additional bits for upgrades that no longer exist. Carnifexes used to be a core stat line with the ability to build pretty much any monster for any job, they lost a bit of utility and versatility after the 5th edition codex came out and only got some of it back in the index.

  • Paul

    After Nids, how many codex’s do we have left?

    Dark Eldar,
    Blood Angels,
    Space Wolves,
    Dark Angels,
    Imperial Agents,
    Imperial Knights,

    It is a shame that we might not see any new models until the majority of these have been released.

    • Alienerd the unbannable

      To be fair I think there are a lot of ‘new’ models in there for most players. Using myself as an example (and hoping I am not an anomaly here) I play Orks and collect them, but there are still models which came out 9 years ago which I have not bought. If the new codex gives me an excuse to buy them then awesome, and to me that would be a new model. Granted they are not new new new sculpts, however.

      • Paul

        That’s a fair point. I’m definitely seeing a much wider range of armies and units at my FLGS

      • Imrahil

        There is so much to collect for each race now… I think we have enough models ^^

    • Joey

      Im sure every 3 or 4 month there will be one or two big releases with models.
      Hoping to get new Eldar plastic Aspect Kits when Ynnari dex or campaign comes

      • Paul

        That would be the dream if we got Ynnari and new Aspect sculpts.

        Rumors of the thing we cant mention because it resets the clock are definitely getting more substantial as well.

        I guess it’s just a shame that they didn’t fire every codex out before Chapter Approved gets released.

        • DoctorBored

          It’s going to be a tug-of-war type process. The Chapter Approved isn’t just to balance the Codexes but to add more missions and rules for competitive play along with some other fun bits and bobs. It’ll hopefully have all of the FAQ’s up to that point factored into the book, but if it doesn’t, it’ll at least have a variety of point adjustments that will overrule the Indexes and Codexes. Then, through 2018, we’ll have a lot more Codexes and FAQ’s come out, and the 2018 Chapter Approved will shore all of that up all over again.

          I’d be quite pleased if all of the Codexes got updated through 2018, but even at the rate of 2 Codexes every month, it’s going to take 8 or so months to get there, longer if they space them out more. Still, that’s the first big step GW is taking. After the Codexes are all updated, what happens then? I’m sure new factions will be introduced as well, but it’s not going to be the typical ‘ok, all the codexes are out, time to update the edition’.

          • Bootneck

            Don’t forget the they said that the chapter approved would also include for custom weapon/vehicle options for “open play”.

          • DoctorBored

            Yeah, though I think they said that they’d start with JUST the Land Raider to start and see if it goes well, and then later they’d apply it to other vehicles.

          • Val Heffelfinger

            This is what I’m most curious about too! My hunch is that once everything is up to par codex wise – that’s when you start seeing them revisit entire ranges again and doing traditional models + rules releases. I’d bet some of these books will have a very short lifespan OR once they’re all out is when we get the app… and it becomes a truly living rule set.

            I’m cool with either.

        • CunningNeutrino

          “The thing we can’t mention because it resets the clock.” Is that the thing we can’t mention or the other thing we really, really can’t mention?

          • Bootneck

            The first rule of Fight Club is: You do not talk about Fight Club. The second rule of Fight Club is: You DO NOT TALK ABOUT FIGHT CLUB!

          • CunningNeutrino


    • Fenix Dargon

      You forgot Thousand Sons

      • Paul

        Good point

        • Fenix Dargon

          Well, it is the codex I’m waiting on, so of course I had to point it out.

          • Agent of Change

            He didn’t forget… you were fated to remind him… all according to the plan.

          • Fenix Dargon

            Well, the damn plan better hurry up.

    • DoctorBored

      And we still need Genestealer Cult and Deathwatch Codexes as well. Those came out at the end of 7th but haven’t been updated for 8th yet.

    • I_am_Alpharius

      Why do so many people continue to perpetuate the idea that no 40K armies will get new models until all the codex’s are done? This is a completely ridiculous notion!

      There are something like 30 different army factions. With 10 we know are coming. That leaves roughly 18 other books or so that will to be done (undoubtedly some armies will double up). Even with all the other releases for AoS and/or boxed games stuff. There is no way GW will go through 18 more codex’s without some of them getting new models. Current codex’s have been coming roughly every two weeks. If GW keeps that pace (from now), then thats another 8.5 months until they are all done! So you’re saying no new 40K models for any codex until Sep/Aug 2019? Pull the other one!

      Evidently it is GW intention is to publish full Codex’s for every army, as fast as possible. What this means is that the majority of armies won’t be getting “new” kits. Instead most armies will be getting releases of models previously available in themed boxes (ala Eldrad) and/or getting additional units added that utilise existing kits (ala GK Grand Masters in Dreadknights).

      If I were to guess, I would say at least one army a quarter will be getting a set of fresh models. Sisters of Battle are a prime candidate, as are Custodies/Sisters of Silence. I could see Thousand Sons getting some fleshing out ala Deathguard (so Vehicles/Characters); and finally Genestealer Cults have plenty of scope to add stuff to, I want to say limos baby! but I would imagine more industrial machinery type stuff makes more sense. The odd army may get something like one or two SM/CSM Primarch kit or Chaos Demons getting a Great Unclean One.

      • Severius_Tolluck

        The assumption is mainly due to speed. They have no real time that would allow kits. So what we will probably see is like they say, a rapid release of everything, and then campaigns like Blight War, that release supplements that have more figures for multiple factions.

        • I_am_Alpharius

          Tosh! GW release two other Codex’s during the same period the Death Guard range was getting released. Speed or space in the schedule has nothing to do with it.

          • Severius_Tolluck

            Yes, and no. They had prepared those two lines of Primaris and Death Guard well in advance. The Logistics to do that for every book was just not there. Unless they had been I secret like Cawl for ten years and managed to slip that to the printers without anyone knowing for years is highly unlikely.

          • I_am_Alpharius

            Studio work over a year ahead in terms of product design. Broad release schedules are sketched out for 5-10 year in advance. Final release schedule are nailed down at the latest 6 months out – as this is the lead time for the production of WD.

            Frankly it is quite likely most of the remaining codex’s are “written” and the printing files are just sitting waiting to be sent to the printers. As 40K develop’s they can make edits to the Codex if they feel they need a change i.e. points, rules etc..

          • Severius_Tolluck

            Yes, for printed work. We are talking “printing” products such as whole new kits of models and their packaging products. It is a logistical feat as is for them to go at this pace with their monolithic company practices. Unless you are on their current Dev team and board, or production staff you do not know what they have been doing and how they are designing or releasing product any more then the rest of us, which is by assumption.
            As I said, unless they had all those molds for new stuff all at the same time fired up ready to go at a break neck pace we are not seeing new models until they most likely clear their slate with the stuff that probably wasn’t already slated for updates. Since many factions are actually less then 3 years old and or had updates within 5, they most likely would not get anything new aside from one off clam packs etc. Not just because, but it is an overhead cost, and one that really doesn’t need to be suffered. Some armies and figs they are completely fine reusing for eternity sadly.
            So we are just going to have to wait and see.

          • I_am_Alpharius

            No for all products – they do work this far head for all manner or reasons. It is not by assumptions, I have shares in GW and have been along to AGM on occasion; they present what the next year is broadly going to look like and long term plans – note they don’t give out details as they is kept top secret from anyone who doesn’t need to know.

            The products that are coming out in Nov and Dec would have been done and dusted back around Nov/Dec 2016. The releases for January 2018 would have been ready for production back around Jan 2017 etc..

            For instant. Today on the WH-Tv twitch stream they were talking to Maxime Pastourel and Max Faleij; the designer and painter of the Mortarion model. Both comment how they were working on finishing of the project around just over a year ago.

            Then on the Wed stream whilst talking to Andy Hoare, the FW specialist games manager. The spoke for 5 mins about the new Necromunda set and commented on how nice it is to see the product about to be released upon the world as they had starting working on it back in March 2016

          • Severius_Tolluck

            Well that was my original point, it takes time for each project, and to have the logistics to have so much new stuff in the pipe line so rapidly is just not how they operate. So we are both in agreement, it takes time for them to prepare projects. What I meant years in advance is to have such a rapid release fire so much so quick would mean a 2 year / 3 year lead up. Which is why I meant things would leak out sooner. So we are at this point in agreement on time frame, we are in disagreement on them releasing too many products too quickly. Mainly I was agreeing with you originally and explaining the assumption others had. Sorry, bit lost in translation there. But yes between that, and multiple lines and multiple resources being tapped, I don’t see much happening until all these products are out, sparing a few odds and ends there. After all their release scheduled for the next almost 6 months is practically mapped out as is.
            As I said before, they probably will release new kits tin supplements for books (As that seems to be the way to go these days) and or mini campaigns like Blight war. AoS is a good example on how they write a supplemental book to expand forces as you can see Stormcast and Khorne were handled as such. This being a gross assumption on my part, but it would make logical sense for them, and allows them to keep on trucking the way they currently are.
            We may see some small releases and odds and ends here and there. But again, they had no interest in updating so many figures for years, so I really do not see them updating much with each release if at all even if they were not pressed for time. Maybe they may save things like Sisters last if they had a full retooling of the range in store, that makes sense too. However Since like 4-6 armies were too new to really get anything it also makes sense those were most of the armies already released with no further updates.

          • I_am_Alpharius

            Ah coolio. We got a “lost in translation” situation going on.

        • Bootneck

          They don’t want to saturate the market too much when they can keep milking one off box sets and games which people will always flock to like magpies.

      • Bootneck

        Ref to Custodies and SoS, There a very strange one as at the moment they don’t or can’t fit in any BF army with much synergy.

        I wouldn’t be suprised if they just get left rot.

        I mean take a look at Codex inquistion, i know quite a few players who have had there armies broken with the index’s.

        • DoctorBored

          It doesn’t make much sense for GW to release a bunch of brand new models like the Sisters of Silence and Custodes without giving them a way to properly play their army. I predict an Imperial Agents Codex that shores up the Custodes, Sisters of Silence, Inquisition, and Assassins, with troops borrowed from the Imperial Guard or something.

          • Bootneck

            Like they did with codex inquistion at the end of 7th? Units borrowed form DW SoB etc all mashed together under the 3 types of enemy.

      • DoctorBored

        You’re right, there will be more models coming out, since that’s what GW’s all about. What people are discouraged by is seeing AdMech, Chaos Marines, Eldar, and Astra Militarum, (and probably Tyranids), get codexes without new models. AdMech players really wanted a transport. Astra Militarum have a few finecrap models to update. Eldar has been begging for new aspect warriors for years, and Tyranids have a few bits and bobs that are showing their age as well, not to mention the really inconsistent releases of Chaos Marines where half the faction is from the 1990’s and the rest is from the late 2000’s. Instead, they just got a brief update.

        So, when people look at the other Codexes that have yet to come out, they don’t see a lot that needs updated models. You could go through and release Genestealer Cults, Tau, Thousand Sons, Harlequins, Ynnari, Imperial Knights, Deathwatch, and all the varieties of Space Marines with nary a new model to be seen. Will that be the case? No.

        But, I think that assuming that models will be tied to Codex releases will be the main mistake. I think that new models will come with Campaigns instead of Codexes.

        • Bootneck

          I think some people are misguided in there beliefs/hopes.

          I don’t think Admech should get any transport as it doesn’t really fit with the whole defend the titans and FW’s.

          CSM did get new kits. There’s nothing stopping you using Plague marines and Tsons straight out of the XSM book – yes they don’t get the same benefits that a dedicated list would but they are new kits.

          Plus there is Karn.

        • I_am_Alpharius

          And GW were very explicit and open from the outset that not every army would get new kits when their codex is published. See question in this WH-Com posting from when 8th was launched. So for hobbyist to be “surprised” or “discouraged” is, personally to me, a tad mind boggling.


    • memitchell

      Oh, no you didn’t!
      You actually left out Genestealer Cult.

      • Paul

        oops. thanks!

      • euansmith

        They were there in the list; hiding between the lines, ready to strike when least expected.

    • Rasheed Jones

      I’d prefer updated models, especially for ancient lines like Sisters or CSM, to brand new models, but you were probably including those as new models

      • euansmith

        I’d like to see something like that, however, I wonder if GW wouldn’t be better served creating some new factions and letting things like Sisters go the way of the Squats.

        I’m saying this as a fan of the idea, if not the execution of the Sisters. They harp back to the classic Red Redemptionists from Laserburn; crazy pyromaniac religious types. I think that maybe they could be redesigned and updated to something a bit less cheesy than 1980’s bondage nuns.

    • LankTank


    • Randy Randalman

      No, it isn’t a shame. It’s a shame that in every edition of the game prior, we never had even 2/3 of the armies playing with the same rules. That was the problem with GW’s release structure before. There were some armies playing with 3rd edition rules in 5th and 6th edition, and so on. Broken interactions, unplayable armies because more than half their units couldn’t even function anymore…

      This is the proper way to do a good game. Get all the rules out so every faction is on the same playing field, FAQ’s to check and balance, and then focus on miniature releases so everyone gets something new. And really consider how fast these codices are coming out compared to in year’s past. We would be waiting about half a year into 2018, at the most, before every faction is fully represented.

    • Ravingbantha

      There’s no reason we can’t see a ton of new models come out along side codexs being released. 6 came out during the Death Guard and Primaris release windows. I doubt very much GW is going to stop releasing new kits for the next several months

    • tomas pardo


    • Chet Atkinson

      And here are GW bashers saying they are a miniatures company…

  • Jabberwokk

    There is no blessing in Elvish, Entish, or the tongues of Men for this Awesome.

    Also a slight touch of vindication for the 4th edition reference.

    Can’t wait to find out more.Like the rules for that screamer killer…the print is to small. Oh well.

    • ZeeLobby

      Hehe. Tyranid love is always cool.

      • euansmith

        No, Tyranid love is always cold, alien and implacable.

        • Jabberwokk

          Aw you know just what to say! 😄

  • Randy Randalman

    Doom and Parasite won’t come back unless there is a model for them. That’s the policy of the codices (for now).

    • Bootneck

      Like the GK Grandmaster is DK?

      • Apocryphus

        That’s still a pre-existing model that can be made to represent the new option with minimal alteration. The Parasite was never fully described, I’d assume Harpy though, and Doom was psuedo reintroduced with the Neurothrope.

        • Red_Five_Standing_By

          Exactly. GW said “screw you” to those old names and made up cool new ones.

  • Steven Walter

    Would sure love upgraded Hormagaunts.

    What I liked in 4th edition, was being able to give +1 Ws, Bs, S, T, I or Attacks to just about any model in the army…for a price.

    I want to see that same level of adaptability again!

  • Thank god the Red Terror’s back. I love that guy.