Goatboy here again doing a 3 part review of the new Psychic Awakening. Today I want to talk about the new updates to the Grey Knights.
What does it mean to those poor players who have languished in agony since their silver stallions are left in the dust from their pesky nu marine rivals? Overall I think the book gave a nice boost to these guys. They are not over the top but I think there could be some gold in the hills. Or silver if you want to link it all up. As is usual in my review I won’t go over everything and instead look at what I think is good and most likely dish on something that is bad. I will give each section an overall grade: 1-5 Nemesis weapons with the higher Nemesis Weapon meaning whatever it is the best. So with that let’s begin.
Tides of the Warp
We’ll start with the initial overall army rules. Like all the Marine books – the Grey Knights get some kind of bonus if everything in your army is Grey Knights (Servitors don’t break it and I think Inquisitors don’t break it as well). I think the rule is pretty good in how it is able to be changed based on what you are fighting. This is the Master of the Warp ability with the Tides rules. Each of the Tides gives a bonus to the army – with 2 of them only going to Infantry and the other two going to everything. I like 3 of them as they have their uses. The Tide of Convergence gives all your Psi based weapons an extra Strength and Damage.
Luckily for us, they tell you what are Psi weapons now – with all the things with Psi in their name and anything effected by the Pysbolt ammunition Strat (combo!). From there we have the Tide of Shadows abilities that gives all the army counts as in cover and if they are in cover a -1 to hit like the Stealthy option from Marines. It could be spicy with a blob of Terminators or Paladins. Finally, we have the Tide of Escalation that gives all your mini Smites an extra point of damage. This is pretty dang neat as you can start to stack a lot of 2 damage spells over the course of a game. The cool thing about the Tides is you can change it during the Psychic phase with one of the new Spells they get.
I give the Tide rule 3 out of 5 Nemesis Hammers
It is definitely good, unique, and worthwhile but picking what you need could depend on casting a low WC spell – which as you know can fail all the dang time. Or just get countered. I wish they had a few other ways to swap it around but still, it is neat and unique.
Next up they updated their Chaplain to have Litanies. It is pretty neat and gives you some other options for the army. The Chaplain also gets 2 other prayers they can recite so that is pretty dang neat. And of course, as this guy is a Grey Knight he is also a psyker too. Thus one of the Prayers gives him a +3 to his Deny Attempts so even if he doesn’t prayer something you like – he could be really annoying versus a Psychic heavy army. Most of the prayers give benefits to units that range from longer shooting power, extra AP and even ignoring all hit roll and ballistic skill modifiers. This could be very spicy with the Possessed bomb rolling around.
The chaplain I give a 3.5 out of 5 Nemesis Hammers
His powers are good but sitting on a 3+ to cast them can be annoying. At the very least he is still a psyker so he can gain access to the character powers from the new discipline to give some bonus abilities as needed.
Speaking of the new Psychic discipline – the Dominus Discipline is the new “character” only power set for Grey Knights. This is important as you can utilize your characters to help out the army in new and unique ways. I already talked about the Tide Manipulation power that sits at WC 5. You can easily swap to the upgrade Smite if you need to or go quickly into increasing the Psi damage of your army. There are some awesome boost powers too with Armored Resilience being a neat option of a friendly unit by making anything targeting them subtract 1 from the Wound roll. This seems pretty dang good for that big fat unit of Terminators or Paladins. Mix that with some added Stratagems and they get pretty dang tough. Heck, they even get a power that just gives them a Command point on a WC 7 spell.
New spells I give 3 out of 5 Nemesis Hammers
They are decent and you won’t always use them. The ability to make a tough Terminator squad is good as well as the powerful Warp Shaping ability. Being able to gain a command point a turn is also a nifty add on to the army as well.
The Grey Knights get 2 pages of Stratagems that are decent. They gained some of the Marine options like Transhuman Physiology and Duty Eternal. There are some other ones meant to combo into the Terminator squad abilities that reduce damage by 1, get the unit a +1 to hit, and other fun abilities. Heck, there is a special deep strike option that lets you come within 3″ of the enemy. You can’t charge but a Purgation squad coming down with 4 Incinerators could be fun. Or just us 4 Psiliencers with all the combos to get a mean multi-wound causing unit. There are also some Strats that let you get a +1 to casting psychics so the mind spells combos can work out. I wish there were more – but at least Grey Knights got some decent ones.
This one hits at 3 out of 5 Nemesis Hammers
I wanted more but that is just because I am greedy and I have an old Grey Knight army. Also, a local buddy of mine is starting them so I just wanted more. I wanted to see an extra Warlord trait power and Relic power from Marines – but we didn’t end up getting them this time.
Last we have the Relics and overall they are decent. We have a few weapons from Swords to Staves. The Sword seems neat as it has a flat 3 damage and it makes Invulnerable saves go away against Daemons. There is a cool Shard that gives you a +1 to cast a reroll on your psychic test. There are some more combos for big assault-style units like granting additional hits with Nemesis weapons on unmodified 6’s. The Tech Marine relic lets the Tech give back 2d3 wounds so if you have those armies based around Land Raiders or Dreadknights – that could be a neat option to always keep your buddies healed up.
Relics get a 2.5 out of 5 Nemesis Hammers
I like them but without the one CP per Relic stratagem, Marines have it gets hard to really kit out some crazy nonsense for the army. Right now as you can only have 3 in pure Grey Knights it could be difficult to set it all up. Still – it is more Relics and that is a good thing for this starving army.
I was disappointed to not see any new Warlord Traits but I get the feeling this update is more like 8.25 for the codex. I expect them to get a newer one at some point with updated rules or tweaks beyond just these few pages of rules. Still, this add on is good as it lets the army work a bit better.
~I don’t see it reaching the podium but at the very least they are not losing all their games to jerks like myself with their foul chaos ways.