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40K: Top 5 Awesome Models With Bland Rules

5 Minute Read
Apr 16 2019

40K has some awesome models but they don’t always have rules that match. We call it “Cool Models, Bland Rules” Syndrome.

Games Workshop has pretty amazing models.  But occasionally (okay, probably more than occasionally) they make really awesome looking models that will never see the tabletop thanks to (or because of) their lack-luster rules. Perhaps GW wanted to play it safe and ended up toning down a model’s rules before release. Or maybe the game changed and what they once thought would be over-the-top or even perfectly balanced just doesn’t “hold-up” anymore.

Whatever the case, we’ve assembled a list of models that we’d love to see on the tabletop more – but we won’t due to their unimpressive rules.

#1 – Sammael

Sammael is the Grand Master of the Ravenwing. He used to be the only Imperial model floating around on a Jetbike (and then the Adeptus Custodes came along and one-upped him). We really like his model! It’s ornate and Dark Angel-y. He’s got a crazy cape and cool sword. He’s even got a book to do some light reading! But his rules are just kinda…meh.

For example, he has Jink – which provides him with a 4+ invulnerable save if he advanced. But, he also comes with an Iron Halo. Now, I understand that he’s a member of the Ravenwing so Jink should be included as it’s thematic, it’s just useless. He’s also packing a Plasma Cannon. Not only can this weapon kill him, it’s also a Heavy weapon which means if you move and fire you’re getting a -1. He hits on a 2+ but he can re-roll misses. Anyone see the problem? Remember, in 40k, you apply re-rolls BEFORE modifiers. Which means, all those 2s you just rolled to hit cannot be re-rolled. And then you apply the -1 and *poof* he just fried himself. So maybe DON’T Supercharge his attacks.

#2 – Ymcarne / Visarch

I’m lumping these two together because the Visarch isn’t that great of a model, but he’s part of the package deal. The Yncarne is pretty crazy looking! The base is insane with the swirl of energy. The model itself is stunning, too! As the Avatar of Ynnead it’s pretty fitting and impressive. But then you get the rules and …yep, mediocre.

Not only do these models suffer from the Index problem (so you can’t find their rules if you’re new and don’t have an Index) but those rules are also pretty lacking, too. The Visarch is a glorified bodyguard who has trouble with anything over toughness 6 and the Yncarne has a weird deployment rule and can bounce around the tabletop whenever a unit is completely destroyed – which could be cool, except the Yncarne can’t charge in the same turn it was setup in this way. Otherwise that would be a great combo.


Note: The Ynnari are slated for a White Dwarf rules change in May – we might be seeing a new version of these models’ rules sooner than we think!

#3 – Toxicrene

Okay, I know not every likes this model – but I think it’s great. I even built and own one! It’s a pretty imposing model on the tabletop and those Massive toxic lashes create a huge footprint. Unfortunately, it doesn’t get to see much play and you’ll probably never seen one at competitive event. You’ll definitely never see one at the top tables in a major event either.

Aside from the fact that it’s pretty easy to shoot (thanks to it’s massive footprint) it just doesn’t do enough damage once it’s in combat. Sure, it has strike first and it’s got Hypertoxic Miasma and Acid Blood which can randomly cause mortal wounds – but it’s just not that scary. If your opponent has a way to deal with a Rhino/Tank, then they can handle a Toxicrene. The damage table also makes it degrade in all the stats you actually care about. Oh and points wise, it’s just not good either.

#4 Inquisitors/ Greyfax

I’m choosing Greyfax to represent all Inquisitors. Their models are cool and they have that Grimdark Witch Hunter vibe. Plus Inquisitor Karamazov is on a Throne with Dreadnought legs – how silly cool is that!?

Inquisitors just aren’t very good right now. Not only are also members of Index Anonymous, they just aren’t that useful. “Hey look at us, we can ride in transports from any Imperial Units!” – cool /s. “We help shut down Psychic Powers with our Iron Will/Indomitable abilities” – so can other Psykers and I don’t have to spend a detachment on you. “We have very specific and corner case abilities that might be helpful…maybe?” – Great. I’ll keep that in mind next time I forget that I can just take an Assassin for  CP these days.


So yeah…Inquisitors. They need some help.

#5 KX139 Ta’unar Supremacy Armour

This thing looks RAD. Like, totally 80’s Robotech-era, for sure. It needs, like, a bigger base, but whatever. It’s totally BAD (like 80’s Michael Jackson bad, not 2019 bad).

Okay, Valley Girl accent aside, the Ta’unar Supremacy Armour is cool – I think this model is outstanding! It’s a tribute to Forge World’s model design and awesomeness. It’s also a tribute to Forge World’s need to playtest their models just a tad bit more than they already do. Why? Well let me just show you:

The Ta’unar is one of the few Titanic units that doesn’t have a way to fallback and shoot. Here’s the FAQ to double check. It doesn’t have the Fly Keyword. It doesn’t even have a way to ignore the move-and-fire heavy penalties. I mean, sure, it can fire at units within 1″ of it’s base (but it can’t shoot it’s Macro weapons). So basically, if you see one of these on the battlefield, just get a model in close combat with it and deny it’s shooting at something you care about.


That’s our list – let us know what models you think look awesome but need some MUCH better rules!


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