Goatboys 40K: Fast and Furious Angels of the Dark!

Goatboy here again with another quick codex look and nasty list for the Dark Angels book.

Overall the book is ok.  I think it is lacking some Stratagem usage like the Blood Angels and feels a little more shoehorned into GW’s idea of how they should work.  Still – it does have some pretty strong units and while my army is pretty extreme on a certain unit usage – I do think there are other avenues in creating a decent force.  Let’t start with the things I like about the book and then finish up with some kind of nutty 2000 point list.

First of all – they probably have a pretty bad ass banner that doesn’t need to take a Relic.  The Chapter Ancient grabs the normal Marine banner but adds on a nice little ability.  When you successfully roll a 4+ on a model that died near the banner, that model gets to hit back on a 2+.  That is pretty dang nutty when you mix in a crap ton of plasma toting Hellblasters who would love to sacrifice themselves to get another chance to shoot again.  While a lot of their stratagems lack the punch the Blood Angels do – the GW leaked the Weapons from the Dark Age which makes your “lovely” plasma a heck of a lot more interesting with an addition of an extra point of damage.

I am not a big fan of Grim Resolve.  It is good and can be useful in certain army builds – but it feels somewhat counter productive with an army that likes to go fast, get close, and start the damage output.  The morale fixing though is good – I just don’t see how often it will be useful as your units are not exactly huge.  I am sure there is a full biker army that could use this but with units hitting at 10 or less models – any damage is pretty damaging to the unit.  It would have been more interesting to have Grim Resolve not just reroll 1’s if you didn’t move – maybe do a double shot sort of thing or something else.

My favorite thing in this book is the all new Talonmasters.  A Speeder Character is just amazing – especially since the little rule Sammael had in the index that allowed him to be shot in the speeder has thankfully been dropped.  This means you can have a ton of massive shooting characters hidden behind Scouts, Culexius’s, and any other model you could throw in the way.  Plus this new Talonmaster is basically a flying lieutenant with reroll one’s for wounds on all Dark Angels near them.  Sammie himself is like a Chapter Master for the Ravenwing but still a Captain for the Dark Angels.  This is a pretty nice mix and I think an extremely powerful unit for the Dark Angel army.  Oh – they all also have Power Swords so they are no slouches in combat either – hitting on a 2+ with 4 attacks that can come in, punch something, and then fly off and punish with 18 bullets.

The army has all the Primarus goodness you would expect as everyone got the Xmas Gift of “bigger” marines this year.  I think the biggest stand out from that gift is the previously mention Hellblasters.  Those guys seem pretty ripe to utilize the secret Dark Age plasma weapons.  I also expect the Inceptors to be pretty good too as they can come one, poor a ton of plasma out for their homies, and still be a pain in close combat with mortal wound causing charges.  The same sort of thing could be looked at for Black Knights – but man those guys are pretty dang expensive.  8th can be so horde heavy so its hard to have an elite force that doesn’t have some survivability either via Character shenanigans or crazy tough units.

Warlord traits wise – I really like the Huntsman ability as it lets you become a Character smiter with the pretty powerful Foe Smiter Storm Bolter (24″ Rapid Fire 2, Ap -1 Dam 2).  The best one though is most likely Brilliant Strategist as it allows you to get back a Command Point on a 5+ when you use one.  As the army doesn’t have a ton of 2+ CP usage this might not be a bad one if you have a ton of Hellblasters and Inceptors.

The Talonmaster List

But enough of that – lets look at an army list.  There is one soup aspect in the army as I felt a few Assassins could be a lot of fun for the army.  Plus – I won’t go into how many dang Dark Angel sprues I have that can make all these Talonmasters.

Dark Angels Battalion
HQ: Ravenwing Talonmaster
HQ: Ravenwing Talonmaster
Elite: Chapter Ancient, Foe Smiter – Warlord – Huntsman
Troops: Scouts X 6
Troops: Scouts X 6
Troops: Scouts X 6
Heavy: Hellblasters X 10, Plasma Incinerators

Dark Angels Supreme Command
HQ: Sammael in Sabreclaw
HQ: Ravenwing Talonmaster – Relic – Shroud of Heroes (-1CP)
HQ: Ravenwing Talonmaster

Imperial Soup Vanguard Detachment
HQ: Ravenwing Talonmaster – Relic – Heavenfall Blade (-2CP)
Elite: Culexus
Elite: Eversor
Elite: Eversor

Pts – right under 2000 and sits at 5 CP if you take 3 relics.

I like the Dark Angels psychic powers – they just didn’t fit into this army.  They seem to have some good mess with you stuff and when you mix that in with a different army like drop in Inceptors, Ravenwing Bikers, and even the Deathwing Terminator army might see more usage.  I just didn’t see the point in this list as its designed to move fast, cause target priority issues, and have a nice center unit with the Hellblasters mixed with a Chapter Ancient.  The idea of a ton of Speeders bearing down on your enemy, charging in with a crazy power sword, murdering a few things, and then bouncing off and throwing a crap ton of bullets into the enemy.  Each of those Masters of the bullet storm will be a problem for an enemy to deal with.  The stratagem  named Speed of the Raven is 1CP and allows your Ravenwing unit to Advance and still shoot and charge.  This gives them a 4+ Inv save due to Jink so its pretty interesting.  As the unit will just have a -1 to shoot due to moving with a Heavy Weapon profile it won’t lose to much effectiveness.  Its why I went with 2 more Relics as the Heavenfall Blade is +2 Strength, -3 AP, and causes d3 damage.  It also gives the unit an extra attacks so now you have a “bully” speeder unit.  The Shroud of Heroes makes everyone have a -1 to shoot at the model so it could be a good “front” runner to cause target issues with all their friends behind him.

The weird number of scouts is due to having an odd number left after adding all the points up.  It is frustrating as there wasn’t anything to take really beyond pumping a bit more into the Scout squads.  The 3 Assassins are just there to help have a Smite target option as well as some quick damage potential with the Eversors.  The speed and disruption ability will be handy when dealing with some of the massed Horde and tricky Alpha Legion armies. The Scouts can help too as it gets hard to get a valid Bubble wrap without looking at a guard Battalion to help out.  I think if the army was more hungry for Stratagems it might be needed – but as of right now I wanted to go with more Dark Angel models on the table versus just a ton of Speeder Characters hidden behind conscripts/guardsmen.

I do really think a shock and awe army with massed Plasma options would be powerful.  I wish they had other “plasma” options with the Aggressors and other interesting units.  The Assault Hellblasters might be the better option if you are trying for a fully movable army with speeders, bikes, and damage throwing Plasma jerks.  I think I just have a cold place in my heart for as many speeder Characters as I can fit into an army and still “work”.  This army is all about those cars that go boom.

~What do you think of the Dark Angels and the Talonmaster in particular?

  • 5 Talonmasters and 3 Assassins…

    • Simon Chatterley

      I did lol.

      But Goatboy be Goatboy. Competitive is all he knows.

      • euansmith

        Even by Goatboy’s standards, this is an exemplary case of cheesy-spam. I salute him.

        • Navaren

          Isn’t that the point of a Goatboy BoLS list? He takes whatever the “new thing” is to its most extreme edge just to show what CAN be done. He says himself that his preference is goofy lists with big monsters but that isn’t what wins games.

          • euansmith

            Indeed. I enjoy Goatboy’s insane take on list building. It is like extreme death metal in its over enthusiastic, cartoonish lust for face punching. I certainly wouldn’t want to play against such a list, but I do find them very funny.

        • Simon Chatterley

          I’m reminded of the following:

          A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.

        • 40KstillRulesTheTT

          This has me scared… The character stupidity has lasted long enough. My OOE hiding behin rippers was already bad enough (even though handy for me), but now… Land speeders… THEY ARE UP IN THE AIR for f… sakes !!!!!!!!!
          GW, for Xmas, please initiate a turn for the character stupidity…

        • I feel like I need a glass of port after reading it tbh

    • Rasheed Jones

      For some reason this makes me think of Jak 3, as the hover cars in that and jak 2 look a bit like land speeders.

  • Majere613

    I’m wondering about the Foe Smiter myself. I know a lot of people think it’s a bit weak, but that’s potentially 8 wounds on something at 24″ range and with Huntsman a lot of utility characters are going to need to be a bit wary. Might be interesting to take it on a Deathwing Librarian with Mind Wipe and Trephination.
    Trephination is an interesting power. Usually with the amount of LD 7+ out there it’s not going to do much, but with a maximum of 14 (if you pass the test on 10+) it could do 7 MW even in that case. It’s not reliable, but it might have the highest potential damage output of any power in 8th so far, especially with a Command Reroll on the 2d6 roll.

  • DoNotEatYellowSnow

    Wouldn’t huntsman be more effective on talonmaster? And slow clapping for GW for giving Huntsman to Belial and Master of Manouvers to the Sammael. I hope they will answer for this one day 😀 .

    • Deilingar

      Huntsman WT works for pistols, assault, rapid fire and grenades

      • DoNotEatYellowSnow

        Thanks for claryfing this. Dat feeling when you are assault canoon but not assault weapon ;D.

  • stinkoman

    Would it neuter a lot of armies if GW just limited a character datasheet (and it’s variants) to one per 1k points in matched play?

    • LordKrungharr

      Even limiting a character type to one per detachment would be very good for the game

  • Remember when GW said 8th would reward you for taking more fluffy lists 😂😂😂

    God I miss formations

    • orionburn III

      7th edition: God I hate formations

      8th edition: God I hate stratagems and miss formations

      9th edition: God I hate that formations are back and I miss stratagems

      😛

      What always struck me funny about the formation hate of 7th was that deep down most everybody LOVED their own formations. It was everyone else that had broken crap…lol

      • IMHO the problem was that the formations were available a bit too loosely, the Meta detachment format made a lot of sense, core formations usually cost enough that the auxiliary were fairly limited. Tweaking that system would’ve definitely been my preference for 8th over “take anything you want” haha

        • orionburn III

          There were a lot of issues that I had with 7th, but I actually enjoyed formations. Like you said they needed to be tweaked a bit. 8th has a bit too much of “throw the baby out with the bathwater” for my likings.

          • That sums up my feelings on 8th pretty well, I honestly expected them to have something to replace formations when the new codexes came out, detachments with strict rules about what to take representing specific deployments, sadly they’ve abandoned the concept currently

      • NNextremNN

        The only problem with formations were that not every faction had access to equally good formations and formations that gave a lot of free stuff.

        • orionburn III

          Yeah, getting rid of the free stuff would have helped. I was all for the bonsus you got by running certain formations, but it’s pretty hard to see Marines get an ungodly amount of free transports when other armies got jack. Granted I was guilty of taking the free stuff when I could…lol.