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40k Tactics: Better Know a Necron – Necron Lords

4 Minute Read
Apr 23 2010

Codex: Necrons is one of the more misunderstood codexes in 40k, so I’ve come up with my newest series of articles “Better Know a Necron” to help people better understand these misconceived robots.

Released in August 2002, and seen as the cheesiest codex at the time, this 3rd ed. codex has fallen by the wayside with the coming of 4th and 5th ed. rules and increased nerfing from official FAQ’s. Though no longer seen as tournament worthy army and in dire need of an updated codex this codex can still be competitive. If the controlling general uses the synergy of the Necron units and knowledge of their opponents codex, they would be able take advantage of the game using the Necron’s surprising mobility and survivability.

In this, Part 1 of 12 in the Better Know a Necron series, we will cover the head honcho of your Necron army: the Necron Lord.

“The most sophisticated of the C’tan’s servants, the Necron Lords act as leaders and energy loci for the Necron warriors” and as such bare the stats and wargear that make them a versatile HQ choice. Though he is the same point cost as a SM Captain but has a smaller stat line than one, the Lords real talents lie in his wargear.

The basic wargear for your everyday Lord involves the Staff of Light and Resurrection Orb. The Staff fires three S 5 AP 3 shots and the Res Orb allows all Necron units within 6″ of the Lord (including the Lord himself) to make Will Be Back rolls against weapons that would otherwise ignore it (Close Combat Weapons that allow no Armor saves and weapons with Strength double their Toughness). Other common wargear include the Destroyer Body, Phylactery, and Warscythe.

Some of the wargear setups and tactics when using the Necron Lord include:

Anti-Vehicle (Destroyer Body, Phase Shifter, Resurrection Orb, and Warscythe)Focusing on speed and survivability this Lord Turbo Boosts around the board targeting the most expensive vehicles and squadrons that need to be dealt with as soon a possible, teaching them the meaning of four attacks at S 5 + 2d6 penetration. Best selected as a second Lord, as he provides little support to the rest of the army.

Anti-Low-Ld-Infantry (Chronometron, Nightmare Shroud, Phylactery, and Resurrection Orb)When fighting Imperial Guard and other low Ld armies this Lord makes every unit within 12″ roll leadership as if they had taken 25% loses (a 41.67% chance of failing with Ld 7). And with the Chronometron and Phylactery the Lord has a greater chance of overrunning/falling back and in case of death, possibly getting back up with more than one wound to continue the red-shirt beat down. Best when deployed out of a Deep Striking Monolith so he can be in the middle of their army without being shot at along the way.

Deep Striking Lord (Resurrection Orb, and Veil of Darkness)A simple setup, use this Lord to keep warriors fighting and Veiling around the board to avoid close combat. On the last turn take an objective or contest one, which ever makes more sense for the situation.

Deep Striking Lord #2 w/ 20 Warriors (Gaze of Flame, Lightning Field, and Veil of Darkness)A riskier setup, this Lords ability to deny the +1 Attack for charge bonus and Lighting Field to deal extra wounds back from a charging attack makes him perfect for quick unit killing. Veiling next to a unit, firing with warriors, and minimizing loses from the ensuing assault is this Lords prime objective. If all goes well and the unit is still in one piece the next turn Veil, out of assault if needed, or move then shoot some more. Biggest risk of this setup is the lack of a Res Orb, suicide in the eyes of many, giving it an inherent weakness to powerful large blast templates. I strongly suggest destroying units/vehicles with these templates first and fore most.


Destroyer Support (Destroyer Body, Phase Shifter, Phylactery, Solar Pulse and Warscythe) Simple enough, this Lord kites around with your destroyers taking Invulnerable saves when needed and giving them one turn of protection from incoming fire. No Res Orb needed here seeing as the Destroyers are T 5 and only need to worry about not getting Will Be Back if assaulted with power weaopns for some reason (or they get shot in the face with more then one S 10 weapon from a single unit. Tau!).

Pariah Escort (Chronometron, Gaze of Flame, Nightmare Shroud, Phylactery, Solar Pulse, and Warscythe)The rarest of all units taken in a Necron army, the Pariahs really live up to their name. However, against an aggressive assaulting army (Ork, Tyranid, or some fast moving Imp Guard) and/or when accompanied by this Lord they stand a greater chance of doing something useful. Running under the cover of the Solar Pulse and using Nightmare Shroud with Soulless makes it so even the most resolute enemy stands a chance of falling back. If the unit, Lord and all, makes it into assault the opposing side is at a base Ld of 6 with Gaze of Flame and Soulless in effect. And Chronometron lets you roll two dice (take the highest) for Initiative checks, increasing your chance of an Overrun.

These are six of the dozens of possible wargear combinations and play styles that one could do with a Necron Lord. Hopefully you learned something today. Join me next time for Better Know A Necron: Part 2, The Lowly Pariah. When I will find out if the “Look over there!” distraction trick really works in games other then chess with old people.

-I’m curious to know what Necron players tend to equip there Lords with. Post the Necron Lord build outs that you like to use. Or for everyone else, the ones that you hate to fight. Plus any other comments on my first BoLS posting are always appreciated.  I hope you allenjoyed my inaugural post, and expect more columns covering many of the forgotten or underappreciated units of the 40th millennia.

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