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How to Play Drukhari in Warhammer 40k

6 Minute Read
May 2 2024

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

The Drukhari are a twisted and merciless take on Eldar in Warhammer 40K. Commonly called Dark Eldar, they consist of raiding parties bent on taking prisoners. The faction contains variations, from the macabre creations of the Haemoculi to the gladiatorial mistresses of the Wych Cults. There is a lot to take in.

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

Who Are The Drukhari?

The Drukhari, or Dark Eldar, are kindred to the Asuryani and other Aeldari. They are an ancient and advanced race of elf-like humanoids. The Dark Eldar revel in piracy, enslavement, and torture and are sadistic in the extreme. Drukhari raiding parties use advanced anti-gravity skimmers. With these, they launch high-speed raids on their enemies while transporting large numbers of warriors.

They strike using the galaxy-spanning interdimensional labyrinth known as the Webway. Drukhari are extremely mobile, striking from seemingly nowhere with little or no warning. They only desire prisoners and vanish with their captives before military reactions can be mobilized.

The Drukhari are unique amongst the races in the sense that they do not occupy many planets. Instead, they hail from The Dark City in the Webway called Commorragh. They are mainly pirates, though they are sometimes used as mercenaries.

Why Play Drukhari

Drukhari are a dynamic faction of sadistic Xenos. Their unique Codex presents a 3-in-1 army structure combining the elements of the three Cs (Kabals, Cults, and Covens), allowing for many interesting builds and options. Do you like fast, hard-hitting units? Do you like elves? Is glass hammer your play style? Drukhari might just be your faction.

Strengths of the Drukhari Army

  • Most units are natively very fast, and this is amplified by fast transports.
  • The ultimate glass hammers. Most units punch above their point cost.
  • Very cheap (under-pointed) and efficient units overall.

Weakness of the Drukhari Army

  • The ultimate glass hammers. Most Drukhari units are heavily weighted toward offense over defense.
  • Army construction can sometimes feel restrictive.
  • No participation in the Psychic Phase.

Drukhari Army Rule

  • Power from Pain: gain tokens from destroying and breaking enemy units, spend them on re-rolls.

Drukhari Detachment Rules- Realspace Raiders

  • Rules: You get more Pain tokens for having different types of Leaders, thanks to Realspace Raiders.
  • Enhancements: One enhancement each for Covens, Kabals, and Cults.
  • Stratagems: Quicksilver Reactions mirrors Lightning Reactions, and each army section gets one of their own.

Key Units To Know

Warhammer 40K Drukhari has a sizable unit roster, and knowing which units to take can be tricky. Here are some suggestions to help you get started.



A powerful Kabal leader, the Archon is the classic Leader of the army. Equipped with a Shadowfield, the Archon is one of your most durable models and provides a great enhancement for the Kabal unit with Overlord.


Able to join Wracks, this Coven Leader increases their resilience with Master of Pain.


The Succubus is the Cult Leader, greatly buffing Wyches with Storm of Blades and Combat Drugs.


Kabalite Warriors

The backbone of a Kabal is its Warriors. Their poisoned shooting weapon, plus natural high attacks, means Warriors do well at range and up close. They can also tag objectives with the Sadistic Raiders rule.


Your army can be built around Wyches, wicked and bloodthirsty gladiatorial combatants. Wyches are lightning fast, and they need to be because they wither to incoming shooting attacks.


Coven Leaders choose Wracks as their Battleline. Space elves are some of the toughest. Their pitiless masters inure them to pain, making them a resilient surprise in the army. With The Torturer’s Craft, they can also generate additional Pain tokens.

Other Units


Incubi are equipped with deadly klaives. Their high damage and armor penetration mean they slice through elite infantry with ease. Back in the day, a Raider full of Incubi with an Archon was the terror of 3rd Edition—now, they’ll have to rest on forcing battle shock with their Tormentors ability.


Reavers will always make a nuisance of themselves with Eviscerating Fly-by and Cluster Caltrops.


Scourges pack heavy weapons and can do pop-up attacks with their Winged Strike.


They are surprisingly tricksy and shooty, thanks to Fade Away and Baleblast, which allow them to pop up and shoot vulnerable targets of opportunity.


The Venom is a light skimmer transport/gunboat available to Kabals, Cults, and Covens. They are useful in ferrying small units around the battlefield quickly. But it also has a rather absurd number of shots.


The hideous experiments of the Haemonculi, Talos are gruesome monsters that tear opponents apart in close combat. They can also be fielded in extra beefy units of two.


This is the pure gunboat of the Drukhari.  The Ravager can be equipped with either a trio of either Dark Lances (for vehicular clean up) or Disintegrators (for dealing with elite infantry).

Sample Starter Warhammer 40k Drukhari Army

Army: Drukhari

  • Archon. 1 Model. He is equipped with: splinter pistol; agoniser
  • Haemonculus. One Model. He is equipped with: stinger pistol; haemonculus tools; ichor injector; scissorhand.
  • Kabalite Warriors. Ten Models. One Dark Lance. One Blaster. Eight models are equipped with: splinter rifle.
  • Kabalite Warriors. Ten Models. One Dark Lance. One Blaster. Eight models are equipped with: splinter rifle.
  • Kabalite Warriors. Ten Models. One Dark Lance. One Blaster. Eight models are equipped with: splinter rifle.
  • Wracks. Five Models. Every model is equipped with: Wrack blades.
Other Units
  • Incubi. Ten Models.  Every model is equipped with: klaive.
  • Raider. One Model. A Raider is equipped with: dark lance; bladevanes.
  • Talos. Two Models. Every model is equipped with: 2 heat lances; macro-scalpels, Talos gauntlet.
  • Talos. One Model. Every model is equipped with: 2 heat lances; macro-scalpels, Talos gauntlet.
drukhari logo

How to Play Drukhari

Drukhari are the ultimate glass cannon army. For those not familiar, this means they can hit very hard, but will often shatter themselves in the process. The Drukhari are also swift. These two facts combined mean a successful player will use speed, cover, placement, and careful application of extreme force to remove key soft targets with limited reprisal in order to minimize return damage.


None of the Drukhari units are particularly resilient, and a commander should expect that any given unit could be destroyed by the enemy if they are given the opportunity. It is not easy to derive power from pain, but the rewards are amazing.

Author: Allen Campbell
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