40K: Adeptus Custodes – The Stratagems of War

The Adeptus Custodes are going to have 27 Stratagems to use and Games Workshop is previewing quite a few!

This week has been full of the Adeptus Custodes. Monday we got a look at the HQ for the Custodes. Tuesday was a preview of benefits for their Troops. Then we got a better idea of how their Fast Attack and Heavy Armor are going to impact the table. And yesterday saw a focus on their Elite choices. Today we’re getting a better look at their stratagems which we are very curious about.

We’ve liked the concepts behind the Stratagems we’ve seen already, we just don’t think they are going to be able to use a ton of them due to CP issues. And after the tidal wave of rules info that GW dropped on their Twitch Stream yesterday, that was pretty much confirmed by the designers. That said, having lots of great Stratagems is a good problem to have! So let’s dive in:

via Warhammer Community

Tanglefoot Grenades

A throwback to the days of Warhammer 40,000 the Tanglefoot Grenade has been re-loaded back in the “canon” so to speak. This is a powerful anti-charge ability and will absolutely set up a counter-charge from your Jetbikes with Stooping Dive a stratagem that was revealed earlier. Now, you’ll have to set this up with an Infantry Unit and your Jetbikes, but we’re confident that cunning commanders out there will figure out how to make it work.

Concussion Grenades

It’s starting to feel like Rogue Trader in here. Concussion Grenades are back as well and they are pretty mean. First off, you have to use them through your Allarus Custodians but by doing so, you’re causing an enemy Infantry unit to be unable to fire Overwatch and must reduce their hit rolls by 1 until the end of the turn! Now the wording is a little confusing at first so let’s break this down even further.

  • Until the end of the phase the Allarus Custodians’ balistus grenade launchers are AP 0 and cause Infantry units to be Stunned.
  • Stunned causes the target Infantry unit to be unable fire Overwatch and they must subtract 1 from their hit rolls until the end of the turn.

Everyone got that? Good!

Even In Death…

Custodes are like actions stars in the movies – even when they die they do something epic. This stratagem allows them to do one final thing, either Shoot or Fight, before they are removed from the battlefield.

Shoulder The Mantle

Did your Shield-Captain die? Was he your Warlord? Well I hope you brought a spare and have a CP to deny your opponent the Slay the Warlord point! Shoulder The Mantle is very Alpha Legion, wouldn’t you say?

Avenge The Fallen

No, not THOSE Fallen. The Fallen Custodes that died on the turn, silly! This stratagem is perfect for your larger units – you’ve going to invest a ton of points in them so you might as well get a return…even if they are dead! This stratagem ups the number of attacks in a Adeptus Custodes unit by 1 for each model in that unit that was slain this turn. If you lose 5 models, each remaining model gets 5 additional attacks. Ouch!

Avatars Of The Emperor

If you’re running them as an ally to the rest of your Imperium force, then this is a nice boost for sure. I could see this being useful for any Imperial Soup lists as the Custodes tend to have better leadership than most. (Or you could just spend the CPs to auto-pass a morale check…but whatever.)

That’s 6 more stratagems revealed by GW. If you’d like to read-up on these stratagems you can also read it directly from the Warhammer Community HERE. And just for the sake of completeness, here are the 7 other stratagems that have been revealed, presented without comment:


Yep – useful stratagems…but pretty expensive. What do you think of the Custodes Stratagems?

  • marxlives

    I like this move. With Custodes being so elite, the ability to choose from a wide range of stratagems seems like an attempt by GW to make them elite but also flexible in tournament play, where players will experience a range of factions.

  • 40K Today

    I’m like 3% jealous they get 27 Stratagems! That’s quite a bit for a small army with no significant cultural delineations (ie like Chapters). Grey Knights have 16 Stratagems? Ouch!!!! Both are supposed to be elite, one of a kind, legendary armies, but really only one is elite elite.

    • BaronSnakPak

      Spoiled for choice, starving for command points.

      • Bootneck

        All I hear so far from people recently is how small there force will be and this that and the other.

        Yes they can form a sole army, in reality I doubt they will. They are hard enough to provide the Hammer or Anvil for any Imperial army depending on there approach.

        For example imagine combining some battalion blobs of cheap guard for sitting on points, providing CPs, and ablative wounds.

        It suddenly becomes a different kettle of fish.

        That is the beauty of the detachment system you can pick the best from a few imperial factions and have enough points to invest in some good choices whilst still remaining competitive.

        This one of the strongest abilities the Imperium faction has over every other faction – diversity.

        • BaronSnakPak

          Every 8th tournament that I’ve played in limits CPs to be used by the detachments they’re attached to, or limits Detachments to a single choice. Friendly games are a different matter obviously.

          • Advachiel

            1) I’m curious where you are playing ( part of the country) that does that. I’ve never even heard of that.

            2) If they are in a separate detachment, why would they lose their +1?

            I think Bootneck has good points.

          • BaronSnakPak

            The article that mentioned the +1 to invuln said it was for a force entirely consisting of Custodes. I could have misread it though.

            I play in the Midwest, US. Our local scene pretty much sticks to Battalion Detachments for tournaments, and other regional tournaments have been doing Battalion with the option of taking an additional Detachment at -1CP.

            It somewhat evens the field by making everyone bring 3 troops and 2 HQs.

          • Bootneck

            I’m not quite sure that evens the field as many factions don’t operate effectively in the traditional HQ Troop Troop mentality. It also limits play style, imo one of the best things they did with 8th was open up the detachment system – I often take spearhead or Vanguard detachments because I don’t like paying the troop tax for units which are often quite frankly useless place holders.

          • BaronSnakPak

            It’s purely anecdotal, but it has definitely cut down on the cheesy spam lists in my area.

            In our most recent tourney with 20 players, the top 5 were:
            1. IG
            2. Death Guard
            3. Orks
            4. Khorne CSM
            5. Tau

          • Bootneck

            I don’t think its pure anecdotal, there are plenty of lists which are fluffy which you cannot properly make using that system – DA Ravenwing (Outrider), Astra Militerum tank (Spearhead) for example.

            Neither are particularly cheesy, but function well.

            Anyway those things aside, in my mind Custodes play a simialar role as Terminators but are better and not vastly more pricey.

            I used to play a Deathwing army so I know having a small footprint isn’t always a disadvantage, but you just have to be more tactical.

          • BaronSnakPak

            It’s anecdotal in the sense that I only know how the meta shifted in my area because of our Battalion-required house rule. We have 2 Ravenwing players in our group that bring tough lists every week with bikes. darkshrouds, sammiel on jetbike, etc.

            We also have IG players that bring battalion lists with 6 tanks, plenty of troops, and transports, etc.

            I play an elite DG army with a very small footprint, and few CP, but I like it that way because of the reason you stated: I have to be more tactical.

            My point still stands though that allying will only decrease your AC model count, so youll have more CPs, but less AC to use them. I’m not saying thats a good or bad thing, but it’s worth pointing out.

          • Bootneck

            Some good points.

            I just hate unit tax’s which we suffered so badly with at the end of 7th with the various formations, if I want to bring my Ravenwing I don’t want to mix it with Greenwing thematically its better that way.

          • Bootneck

            I regularly play at WHW in tournies and they never restrict CPs like that, so maybe I’m lucky from that perspective.

            The 1++ bonus is good but its capped at 3++ anyway which can be achieved from S/S.

            I’ve got a few mixed units of custards already so losing that benefit its no real lose for the gains it brings.

            Just tank the wounds on the S/S and dish the hurt with the Spear dudes.

            I suppose it might make a difference on the termies and the new axe equipment, but until the full codex is out we can only speculate.

          • BaronSnakPak
        • LankTank

          I was just thinking the same thing. Would not be hard for a vanguard of Custodians to be mixed with some other factions and still have 10CP

    • EnTyme

      Yeah, but they’re going to a $10 all-you-can-eat buffet with only $5 in their pocket.

      • adamharry

        EnTyme gets the issue.

    • briandavion

      Grey Knights are universally seen as a dissappointment, I see Custodes as “we learned from GKs”

  • LordKrungharr

    I think if a skilled player gets ahold of the Custodes, and thinks very strategemically, they can win some games vs a wide array of enemies. Personally I love the sound of those Custodian grenades to prevent Overwatch and reduce enemy hitting….my Space Wolves could be very very happy about them as allies. And with some cheapo Battalions there will be plenty of CPs.

    • Rasheed Jones

      Strategemically…I C WUT U DID THAR.

  • vlad78

    I hate stratagems. ^^