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How to Play Orks in Warhammer 40K

6 Minute Read
Mar 28 2024

Today take a look at some basics of how to play and get started with Warhammer 40k 10th Edition Orks.

The Orks are a classic and hilarious Warhammer 40K faction with iconic style. Engineered for battle, the Orks are a brutal Xenos who love nothing more than fighting. Filled with characterful sculpts, including some with actual humor in the grimdark of Warhammer 40K, Orks are great fun, and pack a powerful punch.

So below we will offer some tips on how to play Orks and get started with the army.

Who Are The Orks?

Orks are warlike, crude, and highly aggressive green-skinned Xenos.  Although their society is entirely primitive and brutal, the Orkoid race is also the most successful species in the whole Galaxy, outnumbering possibly every other group. However, due to their aggressive and warlike nature, this massive group is split into hundreds of tiny empires, warring as much between themselves as against others.

In the 41st Millennium another extremely powerful Ork warboss, Ghazghkull Mag Uruk Thraka, began wreaking havoc across the Galaxy by invading the planet Armageddon twice. He leads the Great Waaagh! and has been spotted in several warzones across the Galaxy. The Orks of Warhammer 40K hail Ghazghkull as the prophet of the Ork Gods, Gork and Mork.

Why Play Orks

Orks are an aggressive army with a variety of play styles. Waves of Boyz, fleets of Speed Freak vehicles, or herds of Beast Snagga Squigs are all reasonable ways to go with Orks. Whether in shooting or combat, Orks roll buckets of dice and show quality through quantity. Sound like fun?


Warhammer 40K Orks may be the way to go for you!

Strengths of the Ork Army

  • Numerical supremacy for army type.
  • Low points per model and high toughness/wounds make it hard to remove units.
  • A huge selection of dynamic and recent units, models, and themes.

Weakness of the Ork Army

  • So many selections can make it difficult to pick the right units for a job.
  • Low point cost results in high numbers of models and a high army cost in real-world cash.

Ork Army Rule

  • Waaagh!– Once per battle you can call the Waaagh! for a significant suite of boosting rules.

Ork Detachment Rules- Waaagh! Tribe

  • RulesGet Stuck In gives your Boyz Sustained Hits.
  • EnhancementsFollow me Ladz deserves a call out for making your units faster, which is almost as good as being red.
  • Stratagems: All the good ones happen in the Fight phase.

Key Ork Units To Know

Warhammer 40K Orks have a sizable unit roster and knowing what units to take can be tricky. Here are some suggestions to get you off on the right track.


Ghazghkull Thraka

The Prophet of Da Great Waaagh! himself, and big baddie of the faction. In addition to significantly boosting his unit, Ghazghkull is tough as nails and an absolute beatstick.


Beastboss on Squigasaur

warhammer 40k ork beastboss
A powerful army leader. The Beastboss on Squigasaur has a brutal combat profile. He is the perfect leader for a Beast Snagga-themed army. Not only will his claws and jaws wreck units, but he is fast, and buffs nearby Beast Snagga boyz.

Warboss in Mega Armour

The Warboss in Mega Armour is a dead-hard leader for an army of Boyz. He hits hard and boosts the accuracy of the unit he leads thanks to Might is Right. The classic take is to throw him and his best mob of Meganobs in a transport, and plunge him into the enemy.

Deffkilla Wartrike

Orks have a variety of themes and unit types. Here is another commander type who could take the army in another direction. The Wartrike is a Speed Freek-themed Warboss mounted on a huge bike. He is great with large swarms of Buggies and leading Warbikes.


Beast Snagga Boyz

One of the many Battleline selections available to an Ork player, the Beast Snagga Boyz are the new Orks on the block. Their high toughness, combined with the Feel No Pain rule makes a horde of these Boyz a tough prospect to handle.

Ork Boyz

The classic Boyz, back in town. They are cheaper and can be more plentiful than Beastsnagga Boyz. In mass, they are a great source of so-called “dakka”.

Ork Gretchin

Cheap little guys with a good OC stat, they can even produce CP with Thievin’ Scavengers.

Other Units


The sneakiest Orks, Kommandos utilize infiltration and their Sneaky Suprise to avoid Overwatch.


Squighog Boyz

The perfect compliment to the Beastboss above is a nice unit of Squighog Boyz. They are fast enough to keep up with the boss and pack a whollop themselves. The Squighog Boyz have a place in many Ork armies.

Rukkatrukk Squigbuggy

Orks don’t just ride Squigs, they do just about everything with them. For instance, the aptly named Squigbuggy shoots them as artillery with its effective heavy squig-launcha. This makes it a nice mobile fire support unit.

Killa Kans

Little walkers powered by Grots. They have some solid guns, some slicey claws, and aren’t they just so cute??


Perfect squad for Warboss in Mega-armour to join. They are even better when you call the Waaagh! with the addition of Krumpin’ Time.

Kill Rig

With a bucket of wounds and a decent save, this Squig-powered vehicle is full of surprises. Such as the fact that it has a psyker strapped to it, with a great buff ability in the form of Spirit of Gork.


Both of these big, stompy boys have big guns, a fearsome claw, and moderate transport capacity. What they don’t have is a good way to tell which one is which!


Now here is a lad you can distinguish (he’s the big one). Packing more of everything the Gorkanaut/Morknaut have onto an even bigger frame, this Titanic Walker becomes the centerpiece of any army it joins.


Sample Starter Warhammer 40k Ork Army

Army: Orks


Beastboss on Squigasaur . 1 Model. He is equipped with: slugga; beastchoppa; squigosaur’s jaws; thump gun.

Zodgrod Wortsnagga


Beast Snagga Boys. Twenty Models. They are armed with: slugga; choppa. One with Thump Gun.


Beast Snagga Boys. Ten Models. They are armed with: slugga; choppa. One with Thump Gun.

Beast Snagga Boys. Ten Models. They are armed with: slugga; choppa. One with Thump Gun.

Other Units

Rukkatrukk Squigbuggy. One Model. Armed with: heavy squig launcha; sawn-off shotgun; squig launcha; squig mine; saw blades.

Squighog Boyz. Six Models. Every model is equipped with: saddlegit weapons; stikka; squighog jaws.


warhammer 40k ork

How to Play Orks

Orks are the epitome of quantity over quality. This means if they aren’t rolling buckets of dice, they probably aren’t doing much. Whether actually in close combat, or just wanting to bring firepower to bear, the Orks will always want to be in close proximity of their foe. As an Ork player, your enthusiasm can be a key tool in your arsenal. Winning or losing, a good scrap and a hearty “WAAAAAGHH” are hard to beat.


Author: Allen Campbell
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