Warhammer 40,000/Tactics/Mechanicum: Taghmata (30k)

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From the weakness of the mind, Omnissiah save us
From the lies of the Antipath, Circuit preserve us
From the rage of the Beast, Iron protect us
From the temptations of the Flesh, Silica cleanse us
From the ravages of the Destroyer, Anima shield us
From this rotting cage of biomatter, Machine God set us free.

Ave Omnissiah!

These are the current rules for the Horus Heresy era Mechanicum, featured in Forgeworld's book called Mechanicum: Taghmata Army List. If you're looking for tactics with the previous versions of the Mechanicum, found in the Horus Heresy books, you'd find them here: Previous Mechanicum Tactics.

For the generals on how to play the game and the basics on listbuilding (as well as other tactica rules) you may return to the index. You may also find the Horus Heresy general thread as "/HHG/" on /tg/

The latest FAQ can be found here (February 2019)

Why Play The Mechanicum?[edit]

Start at the top, and requisition your way to the bottom.

You've seen the models, right? For the first time since Rogue Trader, the followers of the Machine God can take to the field en masse! You can embody the grimdark universe of Warhammer 40,000 30,000 with your exotic Martian death-rays, terrifying Battle-automata and horrific Cybernetic monstrosities.

Also? Robots.

At the beginning the force used to be divided between the three ordos of the Mechanicum: the footsloggin MCs of the Legio Cybernetica, the more complete Taghmata (vanilla) and the extremely limited Ordo Reductor. This led to question why would anyone ever use Reductor when the Taghmata list had better siege engines. The most recent update, however, fixes this problem by making you pick Taghmata as a base and then you can specialize into Reductor or Cybernetica as if they were Rites of War, with their advantages and limitations.

The list is still fairly small, with limited unit choices, but a large amount of flexibility within many of these units, and each new Horus Heresy source book would seem to be adding new units to choose from. Furthermore, all the Knights are available to use, beside the newest GW ones (just give it time), and the Ordinatus will probably have you shot if you actually use it against anyone. Be warned, this is a slippery slope that may result in the loss of financial security, family, friends and house...

Also, BIG Robots!

Unusually for Forge World, the Mechanicum is one of the cheapest armies to get in to. It's possible to start an army with a single Magos, and a pair of Castellax or small Thallax Cohorts (Adsecularis if you really want to break the mold!). The army lists, whilst capable of standing alone, are intended to be used as allies for the Legion army list. As a starting point for a new army, this is ideal, as you need even less to get have something you can field. Mechanicum units provide you with some unique possibilities for conversions, too! Take a cursory glance around Coolminiornot or a painting forum and you'll find some damn fine examples. Of course, if this is not your thing, Forge World's own models are more than capable of satisfying any model fanatic.

Gameplay wise, you are universally hard as nails. There are only 3 models with 1 wound, one of which has a 3+ save, another T5, and the last one is dirt cheap and full of upgrades, all of which have access to FNP. However, with a handful of exceptions your models are somewhat pricey (with one, very notable exception), following the trend of a bare bones high T multiwound unit with 4+ save costing as much as a delicious 2+ save Terminator, and it mostly goes up from there. Tough as you are, this is primarily a crutch for the vast the majority of your army is short ranged and with low In, though you hardly lack in long range if you wanna invest some points here and there. Also, their high Toughness and numerous wounds are very vulnerable to Instant Death and weapons that do not roll against Toughness to wound (such as Rad and Poison), and their majority 4+ save doesn't do much to prevent this, but at least Ld isn't much of a problem with the abundance of Stubborn and Fearless, as robots have no feelings (except hatred for the living). Along with the usual slow speed and short range of your models, it will be a pain in the mechadendrite to deal with those Skyhunter Jetbikes.

It should also be noted that the Ad Mech got two new army books in 40k: Skitarii, and Cult Mechanicus. (They've been rolled together into one army list in 8E: Adeptus Mechanicus)

Special Rules[edit]

Warlord Traits[edit]

All generic Mechanicum Warlords from all three lists have the option of getting a Warlord trait from one of the charts in the main rulebook, or rolling on their own unique chart:

  1. Master of Mechanisms: Select one MC unit or vehicle squadron with at least AV12 or more in the same detachment. This unit/squadron gets It Will Not Die. Very useful, it gives the best part of Paragon of Metal to a whole unit and lessens your Battlesmiths' workload.
  2. Perfected Targeting: In the Shooting phase, select a Heavy weapon within 6" of the Warlord. The weapon counts as Twin-linked for the turn. This can be done every turn. Generally agreeable as any Mechanicum army will have many Heavy weapons.
  3. Predictive Augury: The Warlord and his unit's overwatch hits on a 5+. Exceedingly awesome with Myrmidons.
  4. The Death of Flesh: All units in the detachment have Preferred Enemy (Infantry - All Types) while within 3" of an objective. Helps a lot when storming enemy points or defending yours, so even Cybernetica (who aren't usually concerned about Objective markers) could make use of this to kill the enemy scoring units.
  5. Dread Rites: The Warlord and his unit have seen and done some serious shit. They both cause Fear and are immune to it, and also gain Adamantium Will. Useful for Melee Magi. Wasted on Battle-Automata, who have all those rules by default.
  6. Battlefield Analysis: After deployment but before the game begins, select a piece of terrain in the opponent's deployment zone and reduce its cover save by -1. Can stack to ludicrous levels with the myriad of other cover-reducing options your army has.

Cybertheurgy[edit]

Psychic powers for machines. WHERE IS YOUR WHEEL OF CHEESE NOW?!

In order to successfully use a power, the cybertheurgist must take a Leadership test. Depending on the strength and difficulty of the power, a bonus or penalty may be imposed on the Leadership value of the model making the test (note that this is applied always to the characteristic value being tested, not the dice result) If the test is passed, the power takes effect. If the test is failed, nothing happens, but if the test is failed because a double 6 was rolled, the power has both failed AND gone awry. Roll immediately on the cybertheurgy mishap table.

  • Cybertheurgy mishap table
    • 1-3 Signal Corruption: The target battle-automata may only fire snap shots and fights with WS 1 in assaults for the next game turn.
    • 4-5 Corrosive Paradox: The target battle-automata suffers a wound with no armour or cover saves possible.
    • 6 Malifica: The Machine Spirit rebels and gains self awareness! The battle-automata is now destroyed for the purposes of VPs and is no longer part of the controlling player's force. If part of a unit, it is separated and placed out of coherency with the unit. The battle-automata is still used in the previously controlling player's turn, but will from now on move towards and shoot at the closest unit each turn and then assault that same unit if able. Both sides may now target the battle-automata if they desire.
  • The Powers of Cybertheurgy
    • Rite of Celerity, Ld Modifier 0: Target battle-automata gets +2 Initiative for the duration of the effect.
      • Very situational, Castellax and Thanatars don't need it (as it's very hard to wound them in combat except for Primarchs who will still hit first), but Vorax will be at I6, hitting before commanders and if they're in a Legio Cybernetica list, they'll be at I7, hitting even before EC or Custodes.
    • Rite of Eternity, Ld Modifier 0: Target Battle-automata regains 1 wound.
      • This isn't that handy: Battlesmith is probably just as likely to go off, but if you really need to heal that Castellax, or don't have a reason to use any other Rite (and can shoot more than once), then you could use this and Battlesmith. Paragons of Metal can survive being fire magnets and regain up to 3W per turn... if you're willing to risk a Malifica.
    • Rite of Fury, Ld Modifier -1: Target battle-automata gets +2 attacks for the duration of the effect.
      • A Castellax on the charge will mathematically produce seven S6 AP2 attacks + HoW (or better, depending on loadout): 1 HoW, 2 normal attacks, 2 from Rage, 2 from Fury and all of that with Concussive, which in anybody's book is incredible.
        • Even better, with Retribution comes the ARLATAX FMC,that with arc scourge will do 3+1 (assault)+D3 (rampage)+2 from the rite,up to 9 attacks in charge at S7 ap2 Armorbane and concussive! And if it is the SCORIA BFF HOMUNCULEX it can fill the attacks stat to 10 because of RAGE!
    • Rite of Destruction, Ld Modifier -1: Target battle-automata may fire its weapons twice against the same target in its shooting phase, but cannot use ranged weapons until after its subsequent shooting phase (including for Overwatch).
      • Useful at long ranges, like firing 4 Darkfire shots or letting loose 16 rotor gun shots at 30" with Voraxes, not to mention planting two Hellex Large Blasts. However, it's a life saver at close range whenever you DON'T want to get stuck in melee: Unit with Meltabombs? Double fire from Mauler cannons gets them Pinned. Tarpit too close to your Calix? Double TL Mauler again AND double graviton template with -2Ld modifier stops their charge. FUCKING HORUS dropping in with 12 Justaerin bodyguard? Drop that sweet instant-killing plasma on them, and make them roll for Anal Circumference. Sure, you could have Overwatched, but those are mere snapshots, and there's always the guy who argues MCs only overwatch with 1 weapon. You don't need +2 attacks if the enemy never gets to melee. If you're planning to be the one charging, then ask your Magos if Fury is better for you.
    • Rite of Dread Castigation, Ld Modifier -2: May ONLY target ENEMY battle-automata. Both sides roll a D6 and add Leadership (Cybertheurgist for the attacker, Battle-automata for the defender). Battle-automata suffers a wound with no armour or cover save allowed for each point that the attacker's total exceeds that of the defender. If a mishap happens, do not roll on the table; instead, the cybertheurgist suffers a 'Corrosive Paradox' and deals no damage to the target, leaving him wounded and within 12" of an MC. Use with caution.
      • Pretty useful as Magi (and especially Archmagi) have much higher Leadership than battle-automata, making wounds that ignore the battle-automata's usual advantage: their high Toughness. It can help kill Paragons of Metal or Thanatars very quickly.
    • Rite of Immolation, Ld Modifier -3: Target Battle-automata self-destructs. Replace the model with a Large Blast marker. S = Battle-automata's Toughness, AP = Battle-automata's armour save. If a mishap happens while trying to use Rite of Immolation, don't roll on the mishap table; instead, the Malifica effect is automatically applied.
      • While this one can be hard to pull off, it's amazing when it does. Use on Thanatars who somehow got stuck into combat (as they're usually going to be stuck there for the entire game) for a blast capable of ID'ing marines at AP2, or Castellax for a S7 AP3 blast that'll wipe out the unit they're up against (well worth it for 105 points, especially if you're up against a 250+ pts Assault squad).

Armoury of the Omnissiah[edit]

Being a heresy era list, we get some funky wargear that's not found in later eras/outside of the hallowed halls of the machine god. Augments may also be a thing.

Ranged Weapons[edit]

  • Archeotech Pistol: S6 AP3 Master-crafted pistol. A plasma pistol-lite for the Magos that places safety above all.
  • Conversion Beam Weapons: Could be seen as inverse Melta, inflicting greater damage at longer ranges. The only differences between the Heavy and regular version are that the Heavy has a large blast radius and the Firing Calibration rule, which means the unit has to remain stationary in order to fire, even if it is Relentless or a Vehicle. On the corner of a standard 48" x 72" table it has 60% of the table in a S10 AP2 Large Blast killzone, but this would only matter if the battlefield is modeled after parking lot, so the S8 AP4 Small Blast profile is the one you'll more commonly use.
  • Graviton Weapons: Not to be confused with Grav-weapons; their wounding mechanism has nothing to do with the enemy's armour save. These Heavy weapons (not Salvo) possess no Strength, but have both Concussion and Haywire effects. They make the enemy take Strength tests; if the result is above their Strength they take a wound - a result of 6 always causes a wound. So they are effectively Strength 3, wounding GEQs on 4+, and MEQs on 5+, making it ineffective against infantry blobs. That's not why you're taking them though. You take them to dump haywire on the super-tough vehicles of this era. If you have nothing better to shoot at then you can use it bog down infantry because it also creates Difficult and Dangerous terrain in its blast radius, so it can at least severely hinder their movement which is certainly useful e.g. against melee dependent Legions such as World Eaters, Blood Angels etc. Don't expect many kills though because AP4 in the space marine millennium is just... sub optimal (although you will pull some kills back through the broken ankles via failed Dangerous Terrain checks). Stick to hunting vehicles unless you can spam fire against infantry using Myrmidon Secutors.
  • Graviton Imploders: GOT NERFED FUCKING HARD. They now work like grav-guns for some reason (despite being explicitly unlike them in the lore) except they trade a blast for volume of shots (and vastly increased poins), and Haywire for 3D6 AP (though without a strength value, you're lucky to glance a Rhino). No longer worth the points they cost, the only good thing is they kept their AP2 (but considering they're typically going to function as what might as well be S3 guns, just trade them for plasma).
  • Las-Lock: The Minie-Ball muzzle-loaded musket to the Lasgun's AK47. Shorter 18" range and fewer shots at Assault 1, but packs a nasty S4 AP6 punch. Of course, as of current, AP6 is completely useless, but S4 however is not.
  • Mitra-Lock: The Scattergun of the Las Family. It's an 8" range Las-lock, but it gains Shred.
    • Induction chargers: An optional attachment to both Las-locks AND Mitra-locks, it upgrades them to Assault 2.
  • Maxima Bolter: Storm bolters with 50% more shots but 50% less range. Too bad it's Assault instead of a Pistol, so it doesn't give you +1 attack or the ability to fire it Gunslinger style, while still having a measly 12" range.
  • Mauler Bolt cannon: Spiced-up Heavy bolter, with S6 AP3 Pinning, but keeping the short-ranged trend at only 24".
  • Phased Plasma-Fusil: S6 AP3 Salvo 2/3 plasma that doesn't get hot. Since most of our dudes are Relentless, Salvo isn't really a concern. They are terrifyingly efficient marine wood-chippers.
  • Phosphex Weapons: Lieutenant Colonel Kilgore's preferred fragrance, this is your napalm/space white phosphorus, as it burns, it's poisonous and stick to surfaces. As if its S5 and AP2 wasn't going to ruin your opponent's day quite horribly enough, it also possesses Poison 3+. The Lingering Death rule causes the blast radius to remain on the field and become Dangerous terrain and, after scatter, Crawling fire lets you move the marker up to 2" in any direction so long as it covers more models, making it incredibly effective against units that are about to charge you, and with a lowly 6" range for the bomb version that's basically the extent of their use. Fortunately Medusas & Lightnings are capable of firing Phosphex munitions at a much greater range.
  • Photon Weapons Funky disco-light ray guns that have AP2, Blind and LANCE, but also Gets Hot. Comes in Gauntlet (12" S5 Assault 2, no lance), Thruster (48" S6 Heavy 2) and Darkfire cannon (60" S7 heavy 2) sizes -- A glimmer of light upon this Armoured Ceramite'd millennium.
  • (I)Rad Weapons: Chernobyl guns, these are what you get if you rip out a cathode ray tube from an old television and soup them up. They shoot Fleshbane templates, and even if the enemy survives he'll die later of space-cancer, represented in crunch by Rad-phage, which means unsaved wounds leave the model with a Toughness and Strength penalty for the rest of the battle. They come in Lucifex (pistol), Cleanser (assault) and Engine (Heavy) sizes, and the largest one gets Torrent and AP3.
    • Rad grenades: Special grenades that reduce the enemy's toughness by one until the end of the assault phase, yours or your enemy's. Note this does affect Instant Death thresholds.
  • Rotor Cannon: Basically a Salvo Lasgun. Most of the things that can take it are Relentless, so it's a nice way to add volume of fire, but more importantly, at 30" range. They're still S3, so don't get too worked up.
  • Volkite Weapons: The original Martian ray guns®. Dating back to the Age of Strife, they were in the process of being replaced by the bolter as the preferred weapon of the Space Marines due to difficulties in production and maintenance.Volkite weapons have the Deflagrate special rule, which means each unsaved wound caused inflicts another automatic hit. Additional hits this way cannot cause yet more hits. They come in five flavours: Serpenta (S5 Pistol), Charger (S5 Assault 2), Caliver (S6 Heavy 2), Culverin (S6 Heavy 4) and the monstrous Carronade (S8 with Haywire and a beam effect that lets it hit everything in a straight line in front of it, with AP2). However, while they have higher Strength, they suffer from a short range and commonly have AP5.

Melee weapons[edit]

  • Corposant Stave: A stun baton cranked up to 11. Str +1 AP4 Concussive and Two-handed weapon with Haywire. Versatile, can be useful when hunting anything Carapace-armored and even Battle-automata, like enemy Mechanicum. Too bad it's eclipsed by better options.
  • Heavy Chainblade: Different to the main rulebook's Heavy Chainswords, these +2S AP4 Two-handed chainweapons are available for your common troops, which means it's easily massed, and their strength is enough to ID guardsmen and be a threat to vehicles.
  • Paragon Blade: +1S AP2 Specialist melee weapon without Unwieldy that inflicts Instant Death on a wound roll of 6. Archmagos Prime exclusive, but unless he is a Malagra, he has better things to do rather than being stuck in melee. And even there, his relatively low Initiative & number of attacks and high Toughness means that, unless the enemy has Instant Death, he is better off with a Chainfist. But can be easily be combined with Toughness-decreasing items like Rad grenades and Furnaces to deliver armour-ignoring Instant Death to Space Marine characters before they can power fist you.

Equipment & Special Rules[edit]

  • Abeyant: A special ride for your Magos, this gives him +1 Wound, Move Through Cover, Very Bulky, IWND and Hardened Armor (re-rolls failed armour saves from template or blast weapons, but reduces charge, sweep advance and run moves by -1" and counts as Void Hardened in ZM). Damn good value for its price.
    • A note for modelers: Abeyants are not just the fancy techno-station that the Archmagos rides around on (or the scorpion body that Scoria has), they're whatever the fuck you replace the legs with. Even the Magos Dominus model is technically on an Abeyant, and that's just a bunch of metal tendrils.
  • Augury Scanner: No unit can infiltrate within 18" of the unit. In addition, grants Interceptor to the unit's Rapid fire & Heavy weapons but only against enemies within 18" of an Augury scanner turning this from an auto-include item to situational, namely, to keep someone from infiltrating with a melta near your tanks' rear AV.
  • Battlesmith: If a Battlesmith is in base contact with, or embarked upon, one or more damaged vehicles during the Shooting phase, they can attempt to repair on of them instead of firing a weapon. On a D6 roll of 5+ you may do one of the following: 1) Restore a lost Hull Point 2) Repair a Weapon Destroyed result 3) Repair an Immobilized result to the attendant vehicle. If a Weapon Destroyed result is repaired, that weapon can be fired in the following Shooting phase.
  • Cortex Controller: Any unit with a model within 12" of a guy with Cortex Controller no longer suffers from Programmed Behavior. This is phase based, so things like running, consolidating, etc., can take them out of range during a turn.
    • If the model has both a Cortex Controller and the Battlesmith rule, they can repair wounds on Battle-automata with the same repair roll. Hand out these to your Magi and Techpriests and watch your Castellax never fucking die.
  • Cyber familiar: +1 to your invuln save, up to 3++, and lets you reroll failed tests other than Ld and Dangerous terrain.
  • Cyber Occularis: Like servo skulls, but they're actually models now. They're Jetpack Infantry, bought as equipment by Magi and must deploy with him, but afterwards they can wander off on their own. They don't take up any transport space, but can only ride vehicles when accompanying their Magos. All models of the same detachment within 3" of them gain full Interceptor (no 18" restriction), and enemies within 12" of them get their cover saves reduced by 1. Nice combo with almost all your units. Unfortunately, they can't join units, but they have a 3+ save and Stealth, so bubble wrap them inside other units. Hilariously, having BS3 and a TL Laspistol they're better at shooting than guardsmen.
  • Djinn-skein: Combos quite nice with Cyber-occularis. You can designate one unit within 6" of your Archmagos or any of his Cyber-occularis to gain +1 BS, including himself, and Barrage weapons can draw line of sight from them. It also prevents the scattering of units that arrive within 6" of him.
  • Fusillade Attack: The model may fire 2 ranged weapons in the shooting phase at the same target.
  • Infravisor: Gain Night Vision, but Blind tests are taken at Initiative 1, but it's not like you had such high Initiative in the first place.
  • Mechanicum Protectiva: Iron Halo for Magi.
  • Nuncio Vox: Mixed older pattern of the current Locator Beacon-cum-Vox Caster. Radio backpack that prevents the scatter of models that Deep strike 6" near the vox user AND allows Barrage weapons to use the carrying model's line of sight (range is still measured from the firing model).
  • Servo-Arm: Models with the Battlesmith special rule may add +1 to their Repair roll result. May also make one additional Str 8 AP 2 Unwieldy attack in melee.
  • Machinator Array: Older pattern of Mechatendrils/Servo-harness. Models with the Battlesmith special rule may add +2 to their Repair roll result. Adds +1 to wielder's Toughness and provides Night Vision. Also comes with Flamer and Inferno pistol, and you can shoot both in the same shooting phase or one of them and one of your other ranged weapons, akin to a Fusillade Attack. May also make two additional Shred Armourbane Power Axe attacks in melee. Since it let's you shoot two weapons it allows your Magos Dominus to use Battlesmith and Cybertheurgy in the same shooting phase. Nice value.
  • Lorica Thallax: Thallax armor, grants them a 4+ save and FnP(6), but prevents them from Sweep Advancing.
  • Lumbering Advance: Models with this rule cant Run or make Sweep Advances.
  • Rad Furnace: -1 Toughness to enemies locked in combat with them (e-mails to FW confirm Scyllax do not make any friendly troops -1T period) as well as granting immunity to Rad grenades and other Rad Furnaces, and makes Poison and Rad-phage only wound on a 6. Can now be taken by Magos Prime and Magos Reductor as well.
  • Sunder: Attacks re-roll failed Armor Penetration rolls.
  • Wrecker: Attacks re-roll failed Building Penetration and add +1 to the Building Damage chart.
  • Secutarii Hazard Protocols: Essentially replacing the Skitarii protocols, this raises their BS by 1, allowing them to make snap shots at BS2, but can't run and they reduce their Initiative and WS by 1.
  • Titan Guard: This rule only comes into effect in the really big games, as it gives the Titan Guards a re-roll on Morale and FNP checks when within 12" of a friendly Titan. In practice you'll only receive the benefit of the Morale boost when you're within range of a Warlord Titan, as Forge World forgot to give them the fearless buff the other titans get.

Vehicle and Battle-automata Equipment & Rules[edit]

  • Anbaric Claw: Vehicle-mounted bug-zapper that can be used once per player turn. D6 S5 AP4 Rending hits at I10 makes for a useful car alarm defensive system, but it hits all units near 1" of the hull (except for transported units), so rub your hands and exclaim "Clear!" each time you use it. It also hits Ramming/ed vehicles.
  • Atomantic Shielding: The same as Legion Contemptors, 5++ save against shooting and explosions, 6++ against melee. If the Battle-automata explodes, add D6" to the radius.
  • Battle-automata Power Blades: AP2 Rending weapons. Being MCs, Battle-automata melee attacks are already AP2, so the main use for them is the extra attack (because they are counted as a weapon) and, with some luck, some armor penetration due to Smash getting worse in 7th Ed.
  • Blessed Autosimulacra: Weaker version of IWND, regaining a HP on a 6.
  • Enhanced Targeting Array: +1 BS, and reduces enemy cover save by 1.
  • Flare Shield: Front facing force field that reduces the strength of incoming frontal shots by -1. Template/Blast weapons get a -2S reduction instead, but melee/Destroyer hits are unaffected - Flare shielded vehicles are nigh impossible to destroy in ranged combat, much less if they are constantly being repaired/regenerating. Needless to say, abuse it.
  • Cybernetica Cortex: The Battle-automata's synthetic brain, which takes them from mere battle servitors to T-800 stats. Since "Battle-automata" doesn't exist as a rule, this is what usually identifies them as such. It grants them a whole set of rules: Fearless, Adamantium Will, Cybernetic Resilience, Fire Protocols, Machine Creature and Programmed Behaviour.
    • Fire Protocols: Now separate from "Programmed Behaviour", it enables the Battle-automata to shoot up to three weapons each shooting phase. Doesn't say anything about Overwatch or Interceptor, tho.
    • Cybernetic Resilience: Successful wounds scored by Poisoned weapons must be rerolled, but Haywire wounds them on a separate D6 roll of a 6, all kind of saves allowed. They also reroll Fleshbane wounds, but can you get that 1?
    • Machine Creature: This thing never scores. EVER. Still denies as normal.
    • Programmed Behavior: Unless within 12" of a friendly model with a Cortex Controller or already locked in combat, the following restrictions are placed on the units:
      • Target Priority: If an enemy model is within 12" and in line of sight during the shooting phase, the Battle-automata must fire all its weapons against the closest enemy unit it is able to harm. If that's not the case, then they are free to select targets as usual.
      • Onslaught: If an enemy model is within 12" during their assault phase, the Battle-automata must attempt to charge the closest enemy unit. Note that the Battle-automata may still only charge the same unit it fired at in the Shooting Phase. If consolidating after combat, they must do so towards the nearest enemy model if there is one within 12". The most noticeable "disadvantage" of unnacompanied automata, if tarpits get within 12" range, that's it, you're facing them in CC instead of doing something useful.
      • Methodical: May not make Sweeping Advances or Run - After Onslaught forced you into combat, Methodical prevents you from finishing them. Remember! An unattended Battle-automata can be easily lured away and may not make back its points.
  • Paragon of Metal: If a Cybernetica Cortex turns machines into T-800s, this turns them into freaking Ultron. Paragons of Metal aren't subject to Programmed Behavior and gain IWND and Rampage, which is nice because they only come in units of 1 and they will become fire magnets. However, instead of Cybertheurgy mishaps they go full rampant, becoming Malifica.
  • Reactor Blast: When killed, Battle-automata explode on a D6 roll of 6 - Being a S4 explosion it's more of a "farewell fuck you" to the offending unit rather than a danger to your automata.
  • Shock chargers: Adds 'Concussive' to all melee attacks, including Smash and Hammer of Wrath hits, though it doesn't give an additional attack due to not being a melee weapon per se.
  • Volkite Sentinels: Independent pintle-mounted Volkite chargers with their own cogitator, they can be fired in addition to the host vehicle's weapons without penalty and against different targets.

Relics of the Dark Age of Technology[edit]

So, Conquest gave us couple of new toys! Relics are powerful items product of mankind's golden age. You can buy only one of each per army, and only for a non-unique IC, so no cloaking array for Draykavac or something. As for the January 2016 FAQ relics require your opponent's consent to be used. be careful about building lists that break without them.

In a campaign you're only allowed one character with a relic, which you'll be stuck with for the rest of the campaign, so be sure of your decision. If the relic bearer is killed, the side that killed him can choose to play a Relic Hunt mission, where the winner steals (or recovers) the relic, even if it's a Legion specific one, but a Draw means that relic is effectively lost for everyone. Still, you can always opt to play a 'Relic Hunt' mission at the beginning of every campaign phase to acquire FREE relics, where your war zone-assigned character must be deployed. That way you can divert lots of resources to hoard up on relics, even getting duplicates of the non-faction-specific ones, by rolling a D6 on the 'Relic Uncovered' table below. As Mechanicum you should do this EVERY time. Of course, this only matters when playing missions instead of casual gaming, so you could put one of each on your Archmagos and become the avatar of the Omnissiah. Enjoy!

  • #1 Nanyte Blaster: The Grey Goo gun of uncontrolled carnage!!! It's a S5 AP2 Fleshbane weapon, where if it kills anyone you centre a large blast over the dead model on a die roll of 4+, causing a S5 AP2 hit to those underneath it. Unlike Volkite, each model who dies to this can cause yet MOAR large blasts on further rolls of a 4+. All you need to do is get one casualty and you can wipe out an entire unit! Smashing!
  • #2 Warp Shunt Field: 3++ against shooting, however for every save of a 6+ (against direct fire weapons) the shooting unit suffers D6 S5 hits. Feeling envious, Satarael? And it only costs 20 pts more than a Cyber familiar, but only works at range. This is the only risk-free defensive relic.
  • #3 Phase Walker: Each moving phase, instead of moving you may place the bearer ANYWHERE you like, counting as having just deep struck but with no scatter. If you move through a solid object you have to take a Dangerous terrain check for EACH solid object you went through (including all models) so be wary of abusing it in City scenarios. If your dude also has Move through Cover (i.e.: Abeyant or Reductor), then feel free to abuse it. Works well for solo characters since they can't move with their unit.
  • #4 Combat Augment Array: Once per game, at the beginning of any of the controller's player turn, he may count any single die (only 1) rolled as an automatic 6 (Emails from FW confirm). However, he must also pass Toughness tests for each remaining wound. Yes, your T6 Magos also thinks the flesh is weak. If he fails he suffers a wound with no saves or mitigating FnP rolls of any kind. A Cyber Familiar can mitigate the danger by granting a re-roll and an Abeyant gives you IWND, and you were taking both of them anyway. However, you're paying 35pts for one guaranteed 6 - better take a Paragon blade with your Archmagos (Malagra or Reductor) and instakill that pesky Thanatar or enemy Archmagos, for none of those have Eternal Warrior.
  • #5 Cloaking Array: Once per game, at the beginning of ANY game turn you may make yourself invisible for that whole game turn (ie. on the 3rd turn both in your and your opponent's turn, thus starting on your enemy's turn if he goes first). You cannot be shot or charged at unless the enemy unit contains psykers or daemons, in which case the array immediately shuts down (so now everyone can hit you, not just the previous two). Unfortunately you cannot activate it while attached to a squad or if engaged in close combat already. You also cannot shoot, assault, move or do anything at all - Can't even perform actions that don't count as shooting, like Bombardment attacks. So your model stands on the same spot invisible but doing nothing during a whole game turn. Note that characteristics remain active and can actually perform actions that don't need to be declared - for example, units still arrive with no scatter near an invisible Djinn-skein user and artillery can still draw LoS from him. By its nature it benefits ranged, lone characters more than melee ones. There are relics easier to use than this one, though - very situational and LOTS of limitations.
  • #6 Void Shield Harness: The Omnissiah preserves you with a Voidshield for your dude. It's a large blast-sized shield, centered on your dude but protecting anyone that fits inside. Glancing, Penetrating and Destroyer hits will collapse the shield, but it can be restored at the end of your turn on a 5+, and with AV12 you'll be immune to most small arms fire. However, a result of Explodes! will overload the shield, disabling it for the rest of the game and placing a S6 AP4 Pinning Large Blast template centered on the bearer, so keep away from meltaguns (or deepstrike some of your own to watch some enemy-HQ-flavored fireworks). Being Mechanicum you can slap this on an unkillable magos inside of an unkillable mech raider, assuming you are going for maximum trolling (and really, who isn't?).

Mechanicum exclusive relics[edit]

  • Cortica Primus: Nice piece of equipment! Counts as Cortex Controller which gives you ability to cast those awesome Cybertheurgy spells on the ENTIRE unit of Battle-automata, but if you roll Mishap, its result is modified by +1 for every additional model in a unit (so a unit of 3 would have a +2 modifier). Only the new (Arch)Magos Dominus can use this properly and that's actually fair, although it has its risks: Imagine the might of a double-tapping/angry/regenerating/lightning-fast MC SQUAD, the Deathstar to end all deathstars...unless they ALL turn Malifica on him.
  • Contagium Mechanica: Spoopy Scary sentient computer virus that comes to destroy enemies of the Omnissiah! Well, at least their vehicles. It is a 12" Assault 1, Haywire weapon. If vehicle survives this DEVASTATING hit, then it starts to spread the virus itself. In each of your subsequent Shooting phases, each vehicle within 12" of the survivor (and the survivor itself) takes a hit from the weapon. Every vehicle that survives then become infected, and everything goes round 'n round until there are no more tanks to destroy... Awesome. Keep in mind that if the enemy manages this poorly you could have a robo plague bouncing up and down his line hitting tanks multiple times. . . or bouncing up your own vehicles if he gets an infected machine up in your grill. Use with caution.

Taghmata Unit Analysis[edit]

The main army that uses pretty much everything but is the baseline for all Mechanicum. Taghmata's advantages lie within the immense power and variety that can be possessed by a Magos Prime, without the compromises that must be met when playing as Cybernetica or Reductor, so unless you tailor your army to a specific theme/Style, you'll basically be using this mostly.

HQ[edit]

  • Magos Prime: Now with Independent Character and Precision Shots! They MUST BUY a Techno-Arcana, so they start as expensive WS3 Consuls... and they get even more expensive, but being Mechanicum lords they make up by having a huge amount of customization options, like a Jetpack to have flying heavy weapons that keep up with Thallax, or go solo, etc. – so many they have a whole section for that here. Besides his wargear and Arcana he can be upgraded to Archmagos, becoming kind of like a Praetor a freaking monster with Relentless (to properly use those Heavy weapons of his without needing a Jetpack) T5, W3, BS5 and a 2+ save; up to T6 W4 IWND and 2+/3++ with the Machinator Array, Abeyant and Cyber-familiar so many builds use – he’s already expensive, you might as well equip him nicely. The upgrade also unlocks 3 awesome options: the mighty Paragon Blade, the Archimandrite Techno-Arcana and, if he’s the Warlord, a Djinn-skein to greatly help your army. Makes sense you can only have 1 Archmagos in your army. The Orders of High Techno-Arcana are like space military PhDs that pretty much dictate how you're going to play, and are the following:
    • Archimandrite: Archmagos exclusive, so there can be only one. ALL vehicles in the detachment (so not allies or LoWs) gain IWND (replacing Blessed Autosimulacra) by his mere presence and, if he is the Warlord, adds +1 to Reserve Rolls. He allows you to field some of the most fearsome Mech(anicum) lists in the game, especially when most of your options are Flare shielded, not to mention it comboes well with deepstriking Thallax, LRs with Explorator Augury Webs and makes your flyers (your army's weakest section) arrive faster and last longer - Overall the most supportive arcana. Coupled with a Djinn-skein and multiple Cyber-occularis he becomes the most supportive unnamed character ever.
    • Malagra: Heretek and MC hunters, they get +1WS and +1 Attack as well as Preferred Enemy (Characters), Monster Hunter and Precision Strikes. If you want your Magos to be a Mech-assassin and get up close and personal, he is your go-to guy. At I4 most CC characters are likely to hit faster than him, but properly equipped (which makes him even more expensive) he should be able to tank the damage and punch some skulls out. Good for one thing only, he kinda needs Archmagos stats to stand out, otherwise he'll be like the Legion Champion: a discount version of something better, useful for one thing only - The best recipient for a Combat Augment Array and Paragon Blade. FAQ update: as of the last FAQ, if a unit contains anything you have Preferred Enemy against, all attacks against that unit get the PE rerolls. Given almost every non-vehicle astartes unit contains a Character (the sergeant), a Malagra can give their unit PE against most of an astartes army.
    • Myrmidax: Makes him a Myrmidon Lord...lord, gaining Fusillade attack, Hatred (Everything), Lumbering Advance, Precision shot on a 5+, but most importantly, Relentless, meaning he doesn't need a Jetpack or the Archmagos upgrade in order to move and shoot those sweet heavy weapons (of which he can fire 2), although BS5 does help. Furthermore, Photon thrusters now don't overlap with the best options, and he can take two of them! Four S6 Lance AP2 shots are bound to make some damage. Hatred means he's no slouch in melee, but you'll want him shooting all game long - Overall, the shootiest Magos.
    • Ordinator: Not to be confused with the proper Magos Reductor, their roles don't overlap, but can actually complement each other nicely. All of his attacks have Armourbane and Wrecker, and he also has one Bombardment attack (Ordnance D3, Large blast, Pinning, Armourbane, Wrecker, S8 AP3 One-use) which is one of the few Large blasts you have access to as a regular Taghmata, although it needs LOS. Regarding Armourbane, you already have lots of anti-tank stuff already, although an Armourbane Photon cannon is one of the few thing that can and WILL kill even a Flare shielded Armoured Ceramite Spartan, and if he can kill those he can kill anything with an AV. But maybe you want to have half your army shooting at it for the entire game, it's up to you. You don't want to know what an Ordinator does with a Wrecker Armourbane Conversion Beam at full range. A regular Meltagun is also nice for him as Armourbane ignores Armoured Ceramite (and is independent of range unlike the Melta rule), and doesn't need Relentless – The Myrmidax shoots more but the Ordinator shoots stronger.
    • Lachrimallus: The most resilient Magos, his 5+ FNP will make your enemy weep cursed tears of rage each time he fails to kill him. He also makes Tech-thrall units come back from the dead and into Ongoing reserves on a 5+, and forces you to take at least one unit of them. This guy won't go down quickly, if you're taking an Archimandrite and sizeable numbers of well equipped Thralls, take this guy. The former allows you to field those Thralls quicker, and the latter makes them return into reserves for free, potentially maximizing cost effectiveness. Also notice unlike the Archimandrite, this guy does not need to be the Warlord to use his bonus - Makes your Thrall screens recyclable, but that's not necessarily an instant win button: you'll need several squads to make it count, your enemy DOES receive VPs for killing them and they still have a 2/3 chance of dying for real. Keep them cheap so you can afford other things to do the real damage.
    • Macrotek: Enginseer lords, they reroll Battlesmith tests and can take Enginseer Tech-Priests Auxilia (Enginseer only) as troops, as well as allowing an extra fortification (unless forbidden by the mission). Given that Battle-automata can't score anymore it makes sense to give them Troop (scoring) Enginseer escorts with Cortex controllers, and/or he himself should be given both a Cortex controller and a Machinator Array to repair Battle-automata on a rerollable 3+. - Toppling a Castellum Stronghold isn't just anything, imagine now 2. Bringing 2 Turbo Laser Destructor-armed Primus Redoubts will get you shot, though.
    • These sphincters are ridiculously durable. If you created a Magos character for a Conquest campaign (HH4), the progression and wargear can take him up to T7. Yes, like a fucking Castellax. Properly built they can tie/beat Smashbubbler(link?)(Link or it didn't happen). http://boards.4chan.org/tg/thread/36435186/horus-heresy-conquest#p36450691. However, NO MAGOS HAS ETERNAL WARRIOR, meaning most builds need the upgrade to T6, and even then a lucky (or Combat Augmented) Paragon Blade can be the end of your 200pts+ model, a very common weakness in this army, get used to it/kill Paragon wielders ASAP (you have Precision shot). You better get that 3++ save.
  • Magos Dominus: What the average neckbeard has become by the 30th millennium. Your librarian equivalent, Dominus are your only other vanilla HQ options beside special snowflakes. They come with a Cortex Controller to better direct your Battle-automata, but you're actually bringing them for their sweet Cybertheurgy powers, for Techpriests arguably do a better job at mere robo-herding, and it's not like unsupervised Battle-automata begin to rip out each other's bits. Having seen lots of changes since their first iteration, their price increased a little and they're still NOT ICs, but gained FnP(5+) and the Patris Cybernetica rule which allows them to join their Battle-automata pets so they're not in mortal danger all game long. They can't tank hits for their Battle-automata though, because the enemy can ignore them as the closest model when shooting. As for their wargear, they still have wide variety of RANGED options and only three melee options including his default power weapon. For those times he's not using Cybertheurgy or repairing his bots. While taking him naked/with enhanced survivability is also a good decision. An extra Power Fist hit from the Servo Arm and a +1 to a repair roll is decent. However the Machinator Array is a superior upgrade overall. He's a cheap HQ that helps your robots, but that's about it.


  • Secutarii Axiarch: A Secutarii HQ with stats more befitting a Space Marine. Of note besides the rules most Secutarii get are the Refractor Field, Radium Pistol, Arc Maul, and Titanshard Armor, which grants them not only their pimping statline and a 3+ Save, but also IWND. Axiarchs can also grant all Secutarii within the detachment one of four new rules: a 5+ FNP, Move through Cover, +1 to pen vehicles, or PE Infantry. These guys are far cheaper than even the Magos, but they're also a lot more specific in their use and in a force with few Secutarii they're rather wasted.
    • The Axiarch is nowhere near as useful in shooting or melee as the Magus and Magos. Nor does he have the full set of options that they do. He's one of two HQs without the option of a Machinator Array. So he won't last very long in a fight. Making the best options for him a Master-Crafted Phonton Gauntlet to re-roll Gets Hot, a Power Fist to make the best use of his three attacks, than spend the cheap cost of taking the Omnispex, Augury scanner and Shattersphere grenades for Rad Poisoning and Pinning. His other options have low AP while Hoplites have little need of extra help to spam Haywire. Kitting him out with all Rad weapons doesn't make him anywhere near as good as Radfucker. Though he will make an good meat shield and assistant for the Archmagos.

Special Characters[edit]

  • Archmagos Draykavac: The first of the Dark Mechanicum. This scary bastard comes with a Graviton gun, a Machinator array, can buy up to 4 Cyber-occularis for his Djinn-skein and gives PE (Infantry) to all units while within 3" of an objective when he is the Warlord. He also has a Paragon blade that you might never use because of his special rule Liquifractor, exchanging all his attacks for an autohit iflicting 2D6 - target's T worth of wounds at AP2, or 2D6 - AV/2 Penetrating hits against vehicles. This happens at In1, but having T6 and causing Fear means he has no problem waiting for his turn to attack. His unique arcana gives all Walkers, SH walkers and MCs in his detachment a +1 on their charges and Sweeps so consider bringing some Dominus and Knights. He is also available as HQ for a Knight army. Costing less than an equally equipped Archmagos but having lots of unique stuff and an amazing model it almost justifies him not being an IC, so give him an Abeyant to increase his survivability.
  • Archmagos Inar Satarael: This dude died once, came back and decided he was done with this "dying" thing so he gave himself a Mounstruous Creature-sized body (were he any tougher, he'd be a Castellax) with T6, W5, FnP(5+) and a Repulsor shield which protects him from S6 shots (ie. the ones that matter) on a roll of 4+, and on a 6 the attack bounces back to the offender. However, it doesn't work against Template or Blast weapons (ie. the ones that matter), so a normal invuln would be better. Sadly he gave his body a mere 3+ save and forgot EW, but he planned for that - roll a D6 when he loses his last W, on a 3+ he teleports home denying any VP for killing him and his body Explodes. Even in death, fuck your dudes. He's not an IC but has Patris Cybernetica meaning he can, and should join a unit of Battle-automata: 3 S6 AP2 non-unwieldy attacks and HoW means he's more competent in CC than what his WS3 might suggest, and his WT pretty much turns friendly Taghmata 12" around him into Word Bearers, rolling an additional D6 and keeping the lowest two dice when making Morale checks. Because most of your army also is Stubborn this works out very nicely. Having a TL Maxima bolter, a Graviton Imploder and a Servo-arm (which usually are mutually exclusive) he's very cheap for what you get. But for a little more I could get me a Knight! Yes, but he is both an Archimandrite AND an Archmagos Dominus, having a Djinn-skein (with 4 optional Cyber-occularii), Cybertheurgy and a Cortex Controller - in fact he's the only way of having both in your army.
  • Magos Reductor Calleb Decima: Now with Independent character and Precision Shots! Decima is a very divergent Magos Reductor, exchanging 1WS, BS and the usual 4++ for +1S, W, Ld and a 5++. He has a MC Power axe and a Machinator Array which makes him decent in CC (hits at S6 but fights like a guardsman at WS3, though Master-crafted mitigate this), and with his longest ranged weapon being a MC Bolt pistol he's certainly not a shooty character either. Then what's the point? He's a Magos Reductor available for Taghmata use, meaning you can bring Battle-automata and non-Thallax troops without restriction while still getting his Reductor buffs: His unit has Move through Cover (ruins, minefields, rubble and treches) and is immune to Pinning from enemy shooting, all his attacks have Sunder and +1 on both Damage tables, which he can confer to a nearby Heavy/Ordnance weapon if he doesn't shoot (which he won't really be doing), not to mention he's the only Taghmata magos with a retinue of his own (Scyllax or Reductor Techpriests forming a unit with him, doesn't count towards FOC). So, no point taking him when playing proper Ordo Reductor, then? Nonsense! Sure, he is weaker but he can upgrade to a 4++ save and has access to a Macrocarid DT. Freed one Heavy support slot for you, your welcome. But pretty much the sole reason you want him is for his Curse of the Omnissiah attack. An awesome, if somewhat expensive support HQ, specially when taken as an allied one as the first book intended to. Not that he isn't good in a primary detachment either. Thallax lose their mobility advantage when he joins them, so put him in a Scyllax unit: now all five of his attacks ID MEQ's since the Marines he'll be up against will be T3!
    • Curse of the Omnissiah: Makes him a death sentence to anything less than a Titan (provided you get a good roll), being able to unleash 2D6 Haywire Sunder shots, which means he can scream a Spartan to death on a single turn. This counts as firing all his weapons - no extra Machinator shots. Unfortunately, it's very difficult to use, being Heavy One Use and having only 18" range. And being only T5 with a 3+/5++ save and no access to transports with fire points or Relentless means Caleb will face danger to use it and after using it, because it Gets Hot. Feel free to move when targeting a flyer, though. If you want to use it you'll probably need staying power, so take a Cyber familiar for a 4++ invuln and/or his retinue. Fun fact: Being S3 AP3 and hitting so many times, this thing can serve against guardsmen in a pinch.
    • Optional FOC - Istvaan III Survivor Force (Campaign only): A throwback to when the Reductor list was 4 pages long, Calleb's band of survivors has Move through Cover (Rubble, ruins, minefields & trenches), and receives Stealth in the first turn in exchange of being VERY limited in scope (eg. No battle-automata, ouch). Good in ambush or cityfight scenarios, but not much else.
      • HQ: Calleb (Compulsory) and Magos Reductor only - No Technoarcana nor Cybertheurgy for you. Ouch.
      • Elites: Tech-Priest Auxilia (Enginseer and Reductor only) and Myrmidon Secutors only.
      • Troops: Thallax only.
      • Fast Attack: Avenger Strike Fighter only - This also means Thallax will be your only melee.
      • Heavy Support: Ordo Reductor Artillery Battery, Myrmidon Destructors, Krios, and 0-1 Legiones Astartes Tank Heavy Support. Introduce the Sicaran Venator to Decima and love will b(l)oom.
      • Lord of War: As normal.
    • Upgrade time! - Decima Invictus: And you thought he was the only non-Archmagos special character. This badass survives the crucible of Istvaan III and returns with red hot Hatred (Traitors) and Eternal Warrior. He now counts as an Archmagos and must be the Warlord (-1 to a piece of cover). Not only that, he gains Relentless to scream machines to death on the move, his greatest weaknesses gone! However, he doesn't get Archmagos stats, and now your entire army must Sweep Advance when able and cannot Go to ground. Now he costs as much as a Land Raider...but he can get his points back with just one attack so it balances out.
  • Anacharis Scoria: Pioneer of the Dark Mechanicum and lord of the first Hell Forge, Scoria comes with an impressive statline (WS/BS/S/T/I of 5, 4W, 3A, 2+/3++), Archamagos Dominus rules along with Eternal Warrior, Relentless and Adamantium Will, two Archaeotech Pistols, Machinator Array (so yeah, he is T6) and his formerly great weapon, The Vodian Sceptre (now S+2, AP2, Armourbane, causing D3 extra wounds per unsaved wound, or causes an additional hull point lost on vehicles). Unfortunately he got nerfed hard, to the point where a lot of his effects can be recreated by other characters and for a cheaper cost at that, since the main reason he was taken has been cut in half. He's still the most durable commander you can have and his whole host of special rules are quite handy (like removing the methodical rule from your robots, though that comes with a minor downside), just don't expect him to crush everything anymore.
    • He also has his own Cybertheurgy power The Rite of the Beast, which is cast with a -2 Ld modifier and affects every Battle-Automata model in the targeted unit (that's right, like the Cortica Primus relic), granting them +1 to their Initiative, Move and Charge distanses, and re-roll of failed hits in assault. The downside is that when the power loses its effect, every model must roll a D6, losing a wound on roll of 1 with no saves allowed.
    • He may also purchase his special Xanathite Abeyant, which works exactly like a regular Abeyant, except it also gives him an extra attack and a Photon Thruster, which can be fired in addition to all other shooting attacks, aka he has 5 guns, 4 of them are AP3 or better and he can shoot 3 of them per turn (yes he has Gunslinger, but the Machinator explicitly says you can only fire one other weapon normally if you use it).
    • He also may take The Homonculex - his own customized Arlatax Battle-automata which simply gets Paragon of Metal for free but if Anacharis dies it is removed from play alongside him (and since Scoria can be a T6 5W 2+/3++ FnP(5+) IWND Eternal Warrior - if you managed to get this guy killed things have gone tits up anyway). Or somebody dropped a Warlord Titan on him. While Scoria himself isn't Fearless, his Patris Cybernetica rule allows him to join units of Battle-Automata which are, and so prevent being sweep advanced. That's assuming your opponent can dish out more damage than you, of course. This is actually an insane little unit, the perfect DISTRACTION CARNIFEX, still boasting a pretty damn strong statline with both Rage and Rampage (if you bring it with the Arcs for ONLY Str7 attacks rather than Str9).
      • Do note that if you take him on his abeyant, his base size is FUCKING MASSIVE, even bigger than the small blast template which can be a problem as you try to move him around the battlefield and actually get him to participate in assaults. It's entirely possible he won't get to attack since he might not be able to fit through ruins/fortifications (even if you challenge, since your opponent can refuse it). It also makes it very hard for any sort of blast template weapon to miss him. You can use this to your advantage however, place him front and center in the unit and try to LoS hits that you don't want him to tank. When you get into assault anyone within 2" of his XBOX HUEG base can still attack, which should mean your entire unit. Sure he'll be getting a lot of hits back (and the one all the wounds are first allocated to when your opponent refuses the challenge), but unless your opponent is playing that one list where they have a 50 man unit with 3 attacks each and Rending his durability should let him tank all of that. Of course you could just choose to not put him on his abeyant and just have him in the middle of the unit like any Magos to avoid these issues, but then you lose out on his cool scorpion body!

Elites[edit]

  • Techpriest Auxillia: 1 Adept with 4 Servo-automata for 65 points. Plays similar to the IG Enginseer, except the unit can have up to 8 Servitors and 2 Adepts, and can take a Triaros DT. Adepts can be given a vox to act as forward observers, and Cortex controllers to heal Battle-automata (don't give them weapons, they should be busy repairing stuff). One of them can be upgraded to Magos Auxilia, who has Dominus stats but no cybertheurgy or cool toys. Because of the price and the Servo-automata's dependence on their Adepts, two of them are better than a single Magos. Speaking of Servo-automata, they can take nice weapons but the lack of Relentless will be felt with the better ones. Still, those guys are hella cheap: Eight T5 dudes with flamers cost 60pts and constitute an effective restriction order for most things - actually fearsome in Zones Mortalis (if you ever play that). Overall, the squad would feel like a budget Magos for insurance against broken stuff, but they get free Techno-Arcana.
    • Enginseer: Adepts gain a servo-arm and a +1 to Battlesmith (so they pass on a 3+). Furthermore, each servo-automata with a servo-arm gives yet another +1 to your enginseers. Whatever you assign them to wont die, so stick them inside a custom LR, play the music and proceed to collect tears.
    • Lacryaemarta: The Adepts grant FnP 5+ to the unit and +1 to Adsecularis FnP within 6". Because resilience is their theme, a T4 Magos could be a nice addition. Great for Thrall hordes (especially with a Lachimallus and Revenants), although their own T5 servo-automata benefit more than the T3 Thralls.
    • Reductor: Everyone gets Tank Hunters and Wrecker, Adepts gain a servo-arm that they can trade for a Conversion beamer or Graviton Imploder (though given how bad the Imploders are for their points, you won't want to). They aren't Myrmidons, and with their BS3 and lack of Relentless you'll notice it. However, a Reductor Magos Auxilia can shoot a Conversion beamer as good as an actual Ordinator Magos, but cheaper. Equate the cost and you get yet another Conversion beamer, not counting your 4 tank hunting servo-wounds. In their hands, those guns make buildings explode on a 4+. Compared to 3 Myrmidons Destroyers, that's 85 pts saved at the expense of just 5% decrease in effectiveness. Who’s an insurance squad now?
  • Myrmidon Secutors: Sturdy SOBs. T5 W2 3+/5++, starting at 2 Secutors and their Lord, up to 10-strong and come with Power Axes, but their guns are bought separate, of which they MUST buy two and can fire them like a cyber John Woo due to Fusilade Attack (effectively granting Gunslinger but with every weapon) and with BS5, Relentless and Infravisors they're damn good at using them. Lumbering Advance prevents them from running and sweep advancing, but with so much dakka and I2 you won't give a damn. Most of their weapon options are short ranged however, so they need a transport. A Triaros is a must if you want them to actually shoot instead of being a distraction. Unfortunately the Secutors have a lot of issues, especially when comparing them to other Mechanicum units, starting with their price. They're 35 points base, and while they have two Power Axe attacks base (three on the Ld10 Lord) and Stubborn to function as a heavy assault trooper, don't expect them to be good for much else other than finishing off weakened squads (admittedly not so hard to do given some of their gear). They're also outshined in specific roles by a number of other units as the Secutors are the definition of "jack of all trades, master of none".
    • Against infantry, Irad cleansers would be a strong option; Fleshbane and Rad-phage template is good, however Irad Engines and Lightning cannons are better than any number of cleansers. They could still help if you wanted one of them for grouped up squads or squads that're coming out of transports they just wrecked, but there are better options for the cost you're paying.
    • Phased-Plasma Fusils Are now a much better option thanks to the FAQ clarifying how Preferred Enemy works. If you really want to make these guys useful, you're going to have to be ready to sink points into them. Give them a Magos Prime Malagra and these weapons and you'll be causing 17 wounds to MEQ's with just the squad, if the Magos Prime has one as well then that total increases to 19.9 while denying them their armour save (up from 12.5 without the Malagra). That's more than enough to cripple or even outright erase the largest MEQ squad and even without the Magos's shots the squad will kill Angron in a single volley. Unfortunately this is still a really expensive option and will usually be overkill for what you need. Thanks to Monster Hunter they can also do in a pinch against other Mechanicus, but in that event you're really going to want something more suited to the job. Keep in mind that while a Magos in the squad with Fusils is easily the best MEQ-muncher you have (better than Thanatar's and Castellax's even if those also had the same buffs), they're going to be a massive points-sink (even before their transport, as you'll likely be getting them one) and a very large fire magnet. Protect them accordingly, ideally by having something else the enemy can't force themselves to ignore (like a small unit of Castellax or a Thanatar) and aim for wiping out 2 Marine Squads, so that they'll at least make their points back.
    • A unit of Secutors equipped with Graviton guns used to provide superb anti-armour as a squad with Graviton guns can reliably glance most vehicles and buldings to death, outright ignoring Armoured Ceramite, Armour Values and even Flare Shields. Better yet is that they're Relentless, so the Graviton gun's biggest drawback never affects them. Unfortunately they're beaten at their own game by Hoplites which are not only Troops, but much cheaper Troops at that. Even ignoring them there's many other workarounds if your opponent forgot to buy Armoured Ceramite like Castellax and Tech-priest Auxilia (both of which get Multi-meltas) and the new Vultarax also has a Haywire gun, but it's mounted on an FCM that will never die alongside other blob-killer weapons.
      • Keep in mind you can still use them for wrecking armour if you really want to, as they have much longer effective range than the Hoplites and/or any of the units that can take Multi-melta's, and aside from the Hoplites are the only unit that reliably wrecks armour. They also cause difficult/dangerous terrain for anyone climbing out of whatever transport you just wrecked... you are using them on Land Raiders/Spartans right? In any case it allows you to ruin that squad's day without worrying about them getting charged by the very angry squad coming out of their vehicle (which also helps you since you can get another turn of shooting before those squads have a chance to close the gap).
    • For all-comers lists however, a safe option is taking Volkite-Chargers for some good dice-spamming potential (with a strong likelyhood of wounding), backed up by at least one Graviton Gun to help slow down the enemy at such short ranges, alongside causing lovely glancing hits.
  • Domitar Class Battle-Automata Maniple: Essentially a melee automata geared for punching other Automata. It can also handle vehicles and buildings in equal measure thanks to four attacks at S10 and its WS4 make it so it'll hit all other automata on 3's (and D3 S7 Hammer of Wrath hits per model (roll once and multiply by number of models)). Its shooting is a shitty missile, but the Domitar shines even when getting charged thanks to the Graviton Hammers forcing opponents to make disordered charges, and with Crusader you'll be dictating when your charges happen quite often. Keep them away from tarpitts (Paragon of metal doesn't help out too much here, and getting hacked apart by a large mob of S6 fearless goons whose entire squad costs probably less than half your model is embarrassing). Don't go thinking that it can take on every monster unit either. Charge a few Castellax with Darkfire Cannons (or even go solo near their Bolt-Cannons) and you'll find that's a 175+ point investment down the drain.
    • The price of these though is very prohibitive, a unit of Castellax with Siege Wreckers can do essentially the same job for less, and unless you know you're up against MC heavy lists there's very little reason to bring a Domitar. If you bring them anyway, send them after pricey and important targets, smaller terminator units and HQ, but keep them away from Dreadnoughts. Cortus Dreads can very well kick its ass for cheaper.

Troops[edit]

  • Thallax Cohort: Thallax are Jet pack Ogryn equivalents, being pretty hardy with T5 and 3 wounds. Their special rule Djinn-sight reduces enemy cover by 2 (too bad their main guns are AP5) and denies infiltration within 24" of them, so deploy them near your valuable assets. Their Lightning guns are somewhat short ranged (18"), but they're able to pull that jump-shoot-jump trick and are effective against vehicles (even AV14 with some luck), but they don't pump out enough dakka to be much of a threat to infantry. Even though they're WS3, being S5|T5 FnP(6) means they're not too shabby in combat either. Good stats, but each one costs more than a multi-wound terminator. Thallax can be upgraded with one augmentation.
    • Destructor (Tank Hunters) better allows them to attack AV, meaning they get to reroll Rending against vehicles. A Multi-melta is also a good choice in lower point games (~1500 pts) as it's not that easy to Melta-proof all your vehicles and AP1 helps against infantry too. It's definitely optional though, as melta bombs also do the job, but better since more than 1 in 3 can use them.
    • Ferrox gives them Rage and Rending in melee. Useful, since Thallax are not as numerous as you'd like them to be. Can't replace their Lightning guns but you won't be shooting with the Ferrox upgrade anyway. Synergizing well with Ferrox are Heavy Chainblades, making them a threat to heavy vehicles now that Meltabombs are poof (9 guys shooting and charging averaging 5 lost HP, 3 of them Penetrating). Now there's your melee AND anti-armor option combined. But don't blow up transports, you don't want to lose the Rage bonus, you want to be charging shooty units and using your firepower against choppy things. Avoid tarpits because to make their points back these guys need to be always charging, and they can't Sweep Advance. Too bad Ursarax do it better, but at least Ferrox have stronger guns and can fill the compulsory slot.
    • Against MEQs take Phased-plasma fusils, terribly efficient marine-wood chippers that effectively become Assault 3 in the hands of your Relentless minions. And being Djinn-sighted, cover won't save them. To kill Terminators, however, Photon thrusters are your only option. It's the most expensive option, but 2 S6 Blind shots will make a difference, and even MCs (and Primarchs!) might feel more than a sting, all that from 48" away. They're also Lance, but at S6 no one cares, stick to your default guns for tank killing. For dealing with light infantry (T3) blobs and light vehicles (AV 10-11, rhino/fighter/land speeder territory, Multi-lasers are a very cheap way of adding much needed firepower, S6 denying FnP and reliably glancing AV 10 on top of having long range. Irad-cleansers are very useful too, their Fleshbane templates felling scores of poorly armoured enemies, even making tough units take a ton of saves.
    • Empyrite is only useful in Zones Mortalis and those environments where aerial deployment is forbidden, deepstriking by teleportation instead and gaining Void Hardened armour.
    • Icarian Might seem like another useless upgrade at first, since it gives them the option of having Skyfire but only if they don't move, doesn't give them Interceptor, their guns are short ranged and plenty of emplaced weapons already have Skyfire, but there is one main benefit: If you take at least two squads with this upgrade and space them out enough You've effectively created an massive no-fly zone. Most flyers (especially ones like the Xiphon) cannot eat several S7 Rending shots. This in turn can force them to hover, if they have the capability, or they end up leaving the board. Either choice is good for you: if they hover then you immediately run up to them and force them to eat the S7 Rending shots or shoot them with something else in your army that's long-ranged but has a higher Strength/AP. If they leave the board then you don't have to worry about them for a little while and with a little luck you can fuck with their return by positioning yourself right before they show up. If they decide to throw caution to the wind and approach you however, feel free to gun them down. It's not the best way to deal with Flyers but it can be very handy still, especially since their Djinn-sight fucks with flyer Jink saves, and the Thallax are usually terrible targets for the flyers to shoot at themselves, even if flyers like the Avenger Strike Fighter fires every shooting weapon it has, it's not likely to kill even a single model (and if one tries to bomb you they should now be within range). That being said, skip this outright if you know you're up against a Thunderhawk, They're a little too durable to care and have enough weapons that Thallax should be wary of them.
      • Do keep in mind that if you want to try this, you'll only have one Heavy Support available (or possibly none if you really wanted to set up an AA field) so try to find your heavy firepower elsewhere. Springing for at least one Multi-melta per unit with this setup is also recommended if only to make your opponent extra fearful of the AA field (it's not likely to be the thing to bring down aircraft, but don't tell your opponent that).
  • Adsecularis Covenant: The cheapest unit available in 30k, heck even in 40k its only outdone by Ork grots by a decimal point! (35pts for 10!) However in many ways it shows. The cheapest source of scoring bodies in the codex, they're a tarpit unit with low stats and even worse fighting ability. However, you can turn their measly Ld7 into Fearless at the cost of Overwatch and Sweep Advance (nearly an auto-include), and can upgrade their FnP6+ with Revenant Alchemistry, gaining Hatred and FnP5+ at the cost of Slow and Purposeful. Which can be further enhanced by nearby Lacryaemarta Techpriests and issued Carapace armour. So in essence, they can be turned into 20-man drooling cyber-zombie squads, resilient to regular infantry killing methods but still vulnerable to being blown to smithereens. Said Lachrimallus Magi can also bring them back from the dead on a 5+, but if they were upgraded with Revenant Alchemistry the returned squads won't even make it out of your deployment zone. Take this into consideration.
    • Though equipped with Laslocks as standard (S4 lasgun with shorter range) they can swap this out for a Mitralock, giving them Shred in exchange for even shorter range... which is nigh unusable in the case of anyone using RoPT.
      • It is possible to improve their shooting by buying them Induction Chargers, giving them an extra shot with the lock's, at a flat 15 points, a ten man squad with these costs 50 pts and puts out 20 shots, compared to a 60 points for the same number of shots if the squad doesn't have the Chargers. With a twenty man squad this is even better, 80 pts for 40 shots compared to 130 pts for the same number without Chargers. However, with BS2 you don't really want these guys shooting, especially considering the next option...
    • Heavy chainblades augment them fantastically, buffing them to S6(!) and AP4 for some fucking filthy stuff. Against other AdMech or GEQ they are disgusting.
      • A 20 man unit of appropriately equipped Heavy-chainblade thralls can work wonders vs just about anything, especially when paired with Lacyraemarta Tech-priest auxilia to give them SV4+ FNP4+. If you wish to rules lawyer and lose all your friends, there is no explicitly mentioned limitation on their bonus. But don't do that.
  • Castellax Class Battle-automata:: After an arguably deserved price increase, losing scoring and can't be compulsory Troops, they're still powerful and useful all-rounder tough Battle Automata with marine-killing Mauler Bolters (S6 AP3 Pinning). Without list-tailoring on the enemy's behalf (like Plasma vets) a Castellax will hold its own against nearly everything thrown at it and can put out a lot of hurt in both the Shooting and Assault phases thanks to their Atomantic shielding, Str6, Rage, Shock chargers and ranged weapon options.
    • For melee, Shock Chargers (Concussion on all attacks including HoW) can be exchanged for Dual Powerblades (Rending and +1 attack) which is an upgrade to be considered, but probably should only be taken if you have spare points left over for some reason. Rending hardly matters (they're AP2 by default and if you want to wreck armour, get Siege Wreckers) and you can almost always get more Castellax if you want more attacks. They may also get a single Siege Wrecker (S10 Concussive Wrecker), losing one bolter but essentially gaining four Smash attacks instead of just one, which can be pretty great. Don't forget to buy Frag grenades.
    • For ranged combat, Enhanced Targeting arrays will help their Armour-ignoring guns to find their mark, and additionally worsen the foe's chance of surviving since if they're not making an Armour save, they'll be making a Cover save. Never buy Infra-vision. Getting rid of temporary stealth isn't worth always taking Blind at I1, let alone the extra points it'll cost you. As for their weapons, Mauler bolters kill (and Pin) infantry very well, however Multimeltas aren't as great a choice on this unit. If you know you're up against a multi-wound squad, or if your opponent's using a 2+ save model to block the bolters then you can use the Multimelta's to clear them out and finish off the squad with the bolters. In short it's situational, even for its intended role thanks to Armoured Ceramite and Flare Shields, making it more useful on something like Thallax that can get behind the enemy. Darkfire cannons are the other AP2 choice and a better one in general for the Castellax, despite their price. They fare better than Melta's at taking down 2+ armour (such as terminators) and with a long range that helps lay carefully slather pain on enemy Monstrous Creatures or Primarchs with bad/mediocre saves. The Blind rule can also tip the balance of power when melee is on the cards. Ignore the lance factor as at that Strength, you're still glancing on 5's.
    • A Castellax is one of the best Battle Automata to turn into the Paragon of Metal, turning this already versatile bot into a one-model wrecking machine. Give it a Darkfire cannon to blind enemy units and hurt vehicles from afar. Dual power blades will help against infantry trying to overwhelm it (+1 attack is nothing to scoff at), but a Siege Wrecker (buffs Strength to 10 in exchange for a bolter) allows it to tackle all manner of targets without resorting to Smash. Remember, a Castellax with dual power blades can get up to SEVEN attacks on the charge! Cybertheurgy can stack to ludicrous levels with them, but beware of Malifica. Granted, Malifica is extremely unlikely unless it is a Paragon of Metal (any failed Cybertheurgy attempt will result in your death-robots turning against you!).
  • Scyllax Guardian-Automata Covenant: Defensive horde-masher tentacle-bots with a radioactive engine powering them. They provide a -1 debuff to the Toughness to everyone locked in combat with them, meaning only their enemies. RaW does not allow friendly units to be locked in combat with each other (and neither does FW emails). They're also immune to their own effect (naturally) and are highly resistant to both poisoned and rad-phage (not that it would come up all that much against them). Comparing most roles, Scyllax come off a smidge less efficient than Thallax, which are just slightly more expensive with a better statline and far more mobility, but the crunchy defensive melee properties cannot be dismissed. Scyllax can either put out a whirlwind of anti-infantry attacks with exploding dice on a 6 to wound, or they can trade all that for one attack per model that is burly enough to ID TEQ's. These guys have a number of ranged options, replacing their standard Kraken bolters:
    • If Defensive Assault is your ideal strategy, then load up on Flamers (available to all) and Rad-cleansers (available to only one in four, sadly). Template weapons can help whittle down a lot of blobs real fast (having that much Wall of Death doesn't hurt if you get counter-charged either).
    • If you opt for ranged combat, you'll want the Rotor Cannons. Sure they're weaker in strength than the Volkite Chargers but they put out more shots the Volkites and your regular Bolters do, Relentless meaning you get to fire 4 shots at full 30" range. And they're the cheapest option! Even if you're up against 4+ saves, the heightened volume of fire means you'll inflict more wounds than Kraken Bolters.
    • As for the other "1-in-X can equip Y" items, they're pretty self explanatory. Graviton guns help with slowing infantry and dealing with vehicles that got too close, Plasma guns help with taking out 2+ saves from range (handy if a player puts their Artificer Armour Sergeant in front), and Melta guns are good for leaving at home because your opponent bought Armoured Ceramite and you have better things to deal with vehicles and 2+ saves.
      • These are not bulky! You could fit a large mob of 16 and a Magos with Rad-grenades in a Triaros and upset people.
  • Secutarii Peltast Phalanx: Old-School Titan Guard Skitarii with FNP, Relentless, and Galvanic Casters, these guys are the ranged botherers with guns that can either circumvent cover or blast without remorse. They're protected by a 4+ armor and the Kyropatris Field, a special shield that lets them re-roll 1's on a save if there are at least 5 models and reduces the strength of any shots targeting them by 1 if there are at least 10 models. While they all can buy arc mauls, power weapons, arc rifles, or radium carbines, you need at least 5 Casters to benefit from the last rule they have, which gives a one-time use ability that gives an ally within 18" Shrouded for the turn. Titans can even be shielded, but only if multiple Peltasts blow their use of it. The Peltast are your solid go-to ground units. Whereas your Tech-Thralls stand and hold backfield objectives, the Secutarii are particularly adept at besieging a particular area. Battle-automata may be more resilient overall, but it isn't particularly easy for them to footslog across an entire board. Due to the price of the Kinetic Hammershot Rounds, an ample tactic is to take a full unit of Peltast equipped with radium carbines (who have very comparable damage results to the Galvanic-caster with Kinetic Hammershot, only being worse if you chose Preferred Enemy against MEQ's/Taghmata), stick them in a Triaros, and launch them towards a forward objective and plant themselves down under the cover of the Triaros. Anyone who gets too close will have to deal with 20 3-shot radium carbines at BS5. Are they expensive? Yes. Are they explicitly needed? No, but this is the Horus Heresy! Larger blobs of units gunning each-other down is encouraged. Essentially, the Peltast are an all-around decent choice for the Mechanicum. Not amazing like an Arlatax per say, but they allow you to mix up your play style and not have to rely on high toughness robots for once. Alternatively the Kinetic Hammershot also allows them to work as good backfield support, as Relentless allows them to save you the trouble of getting them a transport
    • Don't run them up with Arc Rifles, killing vehicles is the Hoplites' job and they do it far better. Unless you park right down the throat of the enemy you're going to only get 10-20 shots, and when the thing you're shooting (which is almost always going to be a transport) is destroyed and the squad inside comes out, they're going to be pissed and Peltast squads die like a bitch in melee. The upgrade also makes the squad so much pricier, to the point that they can be comparable or more expensive than what they're destroying, and if you want to use the much higher Strength to go creature hunting, stop what you're doing immediately. You've got other units like all of your automata who do that job way better. The only time it could possibly work out for you is if your opponent was stupid enough to let a 20-man squad get within 6" of a Thunderhawk Gunship as they can and will kill it in one round, but if they're that dumb you could've just used 30 Hoplites who're not only harder much harder to kill than this one squad, but cheaper as well.
  • Secutarii Hoplite Phalanx: Where the Peltasts shoot for a living, these guys have Arc Lances and boosted boarding shields with 5+ Invulns. If it wasn't clear from all the haywire the squad has, these guys are your end-all tankbusters. No armoured vehicle, save titans, is going to survive a full squad of Hoplites shooting at them and even at only 10 strong they will kill flyers, even without Skyfire (provided you engaged Hazard Protocols like you should've). Hell, thanks to Hazard Protocols you can watch as two squads kill Thunderhawks. Always make sure to buy the Alpha a pistol as the Lance and Shield don't prevent him from gaining an extra attack with it, and a power weapon would also be advised if you plan to hit transports. The rest of the squad can handle even spartans just fine and once they're dead, the squad's made its points back so if you can take any of the transport's occupants with you, then consider it a bonus.

Dedicated Transport[edit]

  • Triaros Armoured Conveyer: Dune Train Not quite a CRASSUS, but close. 14/12/12, 4HP The thing comes standard with a flare shield for all that -1 goodness. It also gets a shock ram giving you AV15 on your front when ramming and does haywire damage. the shock ram also inflicts d6 S6 AP5 hits on any unit it tank shocks in addition to resolving the tank shock and the shock ram doesn't count as a weapon so can never be removed by weapon destroyed results on the damage chart. Carries 20 and re-rolls failed dangerous terrain tests. Give it lesser IWND for 5 points. 135. Awesome. Great for getting things close. The Spice must flow.
    • Volkite Sentinels are a subtle, but potent feature. Essentially they are two Volkite chargers than may target independently of the Triaros itself (and presumably the other Volkite weapon); these can be used to take out "Chaff" units.
    • You'll generally give this unit the noble task of transporting the Omnissiah's servants. Myrmidons of both kinds are the most obvious use, it's effectively mandatory for Secutors as they all possess short range weapons, and with the most expensive weapon option for Secutors being the one with AP3 you will greatly appreciate the Twin-linked Mauler Boltcannon. Destructors too can benefit from this, the Irrad Engine to be specific. Another possible useage is Tech-priests. Not too bad as almost any configuration of the Tech-priest is cheaper than Myrmidons; 8 Flamer servitors could be considered a very light version of the Irrad-Engine. The description indicates that it is fair game to use the FNP buff while inside the vehicle; take a minimum sized Tech-priest squad, 15 Thralls, load em up and maybe have some fun...? Its a stretch that one.

Fast Attack[edit]

  • Ursarax Cohort: These are Thallax's less agile but stronger and faster siblings (they trade jetpack for jumpack), with twin lightning claws (or Power fists) and Iron Man chest lasers. The Volkite Incinerator isn't too great in CC, as four attacks at S10 almost always beats ONE S6 instant death attack (even if the target is T6) but if you get locked in multiple rounds it can be okay enough against T6 models. Having said that, swapping twin lightning claws for powerfists might seem like a good general idea since you're Initiative 2, but if you're fighting against Marines, lightning claws at S5 will put out more wounds than fists at S10.
    • Also the twin-powerfists are 10 points each: ideally, if you're taking a large squad, nestle a couple into a squad to provide some tough tin-can opening power.
    • A squad of 9 will put out (excluding HoW) 36 attacks. This costs 455 points and can be hillariously powerful against anything that isn't going to launch S10 at you or is packing sizeable numbers of Autocannons. Toss in say 3 Powerfists and you'll be good to against pretty much anything.
      • Not a very strong option in the current Custodes-Medusa Meta but they can ID most of the stuff IF they survive (even in melee they're low I is uncomfortable).
      • They probably have a better life in Zone Mortalis, but price escalates quickly, a squad of 3 in Ordo Reductor with 2 power fist can tell his own.
  • Vorax Class Battle-Automata: Got quite a buff; were made cheaper in points, WS4, have 3 attacks due to Power-blades now being pair weapons and the change in the wording of "Programmed behaviour" means its a lot easier to use fleet, they can now also be in units of 6 too.
    • They are still fragile, but they can seriously upset small units by hacking them apart with volume of attacks and generally can soak up enough wounds (T6, 3 Wounds and 4+ save is relatively durable) to withstand the enemy. Just don't be an idiot and expect to have a good day vs a sizeable tactical marine blob because you will have krak-grenade booted your back end. Though if you're playing with Legio-Cybernetica, you may be a bad enough dude to abuse the shit out of native I5. They may also upgrade their rotor-cannons to have bio-corrosive rounds, which makes them poisoned (4+), but reduces their range to 15'. ALWAYS TAKE THEM, Vorax already want to be in close combat anyway, and vanilla rotor cannons don't have enough stopping power to be a threat to marines. Seeing as you already are going to be getting close with your Vorax, there is no reason not to take the Bio-Corrosive rounds. Honestly these insectoid buggers are one of the unsung heroes of this list along with the blight dro... I mean the Vultarax stratos; they can throw out a tonne of dakka (6 will deliver 6 lightning gun shots (or irrad-cleansers if you're feeling cheeky, but I'd probably avoid them) and 48 rotor cannon shots that hit on 2+ or 3+ respectively whether you took the enhanced targeting or not that will wound on 4+ (because you took those bio-corrosive rounds didn't you)). After that fusillade, space marines will die from the sheer volume of dakka coming their way. Granted there are many, many methods of killing space marines effectively in this list, but these bad boys can pop up from Outflank (thanks Scout) hopefully next to their target and lay down the pain while being fairly survivable as well all the while not having to worry about being in cortex range so much as chances are you'll be close to what you want to shoot at anyway. And what if you get charged? Well you've still got 3 attacks per Vorax that hit at S6 with rending at either initiative 4 or 5, so I can guarantee you will not go down without a fight.
  • Arlatax Class Battle-Automata Maniple: Hoo boy forget about the Domitar now, this thing will rip to shreds anything you set its sights at. Equipped with +2 strength lightning claws at AP2 in addition to its base strength of 7 which effectively makes it S9!!! And as if that isn't enough, its a JUMP PACK MONSTROUS CREATURE. Have fun zipping around the battlefield busting open tanks with 5 S9 AP2 attacks on the charge (and since it has frag grenades as base, you don't even have to worry about cover). Since it costs the same as a Domitar, you may as well give it Paragon of Metal since IWND will come in handy. Like most of the other Mechanicum's battle-automata, it has atomantic shielding which grants you a 5++ to shooting and a 6++ in close combat. It can replace each of its lightning claws with an arc scourge, which is a Strength User AP2 Melee, Rampage, Armourbane, Concussive electric whip-lash for ten points each. Its debatable as to whether this is worth it. If you are getting it, its likely because you want to bust open a land raider, but the base lightning claws can do that just about the same with the added benefit of being S9. On second thought, the Arlatax can serve as a very effective monstrous creature/vehicle hunter (looking at you Leviathan dreads-- but please, then take it in a Legio Cybernetica list for that extra cortex range boost and that delicious Initiative 5). Even more, it has some staying power at range too with its inbuilt cannon (slightly worse mauler cannon as it is only S6 AP4, but you are only using these before you assault anyway) and Plasma Blaster (S7 AP2, gets hot, Assault 2, uh...not overkill at all) One thing is for sure, if you take one of these its going to be heavily focused. It only has a 3+ armor save with T6 which means while it is not fragile, it is not exactly the toughest battle-automata out there. GET BEHIND COVER. You want to get this guy stuck into close combat as soon as possible (preferably with monstrous creatures, because did I mention its is I4 as well?). Overall, it looks like the Arlatax can very well soon become one of the staple units of the Mechanicum as soon as Forgeworld decides to release a model. But hey, whats stopping you from converting a Castellax or Domitar yourself so you can use it now?
  • Avenger Strike Fighter Your ground attack craft. Coming armed with the Avenger Bolt Cannon (36" S6 AP3 Heavy 7) and a pair of Lascannons standard its ready to take on any target, along with a host of options to suit either infantry or tank hunting, for infantry you're given the options of 6 Tactical Bombs (S6 AP4, Barrage, Blast, one use), 2 Autocannons or 2 Multilasers. For tanks you can mount 2 Kraken Penetrator Missiles (36" S8 AP1 Missile, Armourbane, one use) and pair this with the Battle Servitor control special option which give the Fighter Tank Hunters. For both roles, you can give the Fighter a pair of Missile Launchers (Frag/Krak). Your sole defensive anti-air weapon is a Heavy Stubber which can attack other targets than your ground weapons, also has Skyfire, use this to opportunistically(/desperately) take pot shots at enemy aircraft side or rear armour. Also, it comes with BS3, but as you'll mostly be attacking ground targets this is mitigated by the Strafing Run rule. It's not the most resilient craft though, at 12/10/10 with 2 Hull Points, and while the Chaff Launcher option (4+ invul against Missile type weapons) and the Supersonic special rule help mitigate some threat, prioritise Anti-Air threats first or the Fighter might not last long. (Written pre-Death from the Skies update, update if/when Forge World updates to bring flyers in line with said update.)
  • Lightning Fighter Multi-role fighter that excels a bit more at dogfighting than the Avenger but can also play the role of ground attack craft if needed. Separating itself from the Avenger, the Lightning has BS4, already more capable an anti-air fighter, taken with just its stock pair of Lascannons its a moderately priced anti-air fighter that will do a pretty good job of keeping the airspace clear, which can be augmented by taking the expensive (But worth it) pair of Kraken Penetrator Missile (36" S8 AP1 Heavy 1, Missile, Armourbane one use) or a pair of Autocannons, virtually assured to wipe opposition out of the sky. If you want to get into ground attack mode, the Ground-Tracking Auguries upgrade will give you Strafing Run and Battle Servitor Control will give you Tank Hunters, you can take upgrades accordingly. For infantry, you get access to the Phosphex Bomb Cluster which is an absolute infantry shredder (Bomb 2, Barrage, Blast, Poison 3+, Crawling Fire, Lingering Death, Deadly Cargo, one use) but dangerous if you get hit before dropping it. (Dangerous Cargo: If you lose a hull point, roll D6, on 6 you explode.) Also available is a pair of Sunfury Heavy Missiles (36" S6 AP3, Heavy 1, Missile, Large Blast, Blind, Gets Hot, one use) for Marine hunting. Along with twin-linked Multi-Lasers, Autocannons and Missile Launchers (Frag/Krak). Vehicle hunting is, along with the aforementioned Lascannons and Kraken Missiles, you've got an Electromagnetic Storm Charge for vehicles or other Mechanicum units with Cybernetica Cortex (S3 AP4, Bomb 1, Haywire, Large Blast, Concussive, one use). Survivability is still an issue with 11/11/10 and 2 hull points, Chaff Launcher (4+ invul against Missile weapons) comes standard, and the Agile rule gives +1 to Jink saves, along with Supersonic to get away from AA, the last trick up your sleeve is the Ramjet Diffraction Grid which trades the cover saves you get from Night Fighting to decrease the strength of incoming shots by -1, which is definitely a good trade off as you'll be Jinking on a 3+ anyway. A lot of the upgrades you'll be sticking on this thing are really expensive, so consider whether you want an AA fighter or choose the Avenger if you want a dedicated ground-attack craft. (Written pre-Death from the Skies update, update if/when Forge World updates to bring flyers in line with said update.)
  • Tarantulas Hot diggly dangingly, you have some cool toys with these. Everyone who has seen these before (particularly Solar Auxilia players who would appreciate them due to Nuncio-Vox) knows the drill on these already (Deep strike some nifty TL-heavy weapon love). However, being Mechanicus, you have some cool toys. Tech-Priest auxilia and Djinn-Skein Magos (unfortunately, doesn't extend to Occulari) give you reliable deep-strike abilities. Models with Battlesmith allow them to fire normally.
    • Twin-linked Mauler Boltcannons, which can be savage in Zone-Mortalis from a defensive view point.
    • Twin-linked Volkite Culverins can give you some reasonably priced anti-horde abilities, or just put out a healthy amount of S6-Deflagerate.
    • Twin-linked Photon thrusters, in case you wanted to fry up some Terminators on the cheap.
    • Quad-gun, because you wanna be an Aegis-line apparently (this is the most expensive option).
      • With a few of these options, you would do well compare them to Myrmidons of either kind. Generally, they're cheaper, but their likeliness to hit is lower, but if your deep-striking them they're much more mobile, curiously.
  • Vultarax Strato-Automata: A flying Castellax (FMC) with T6 (downgraded in inferno), armed with two Setheno Havoc Launchers which reroll successful cover saves that synergize well with their Enhanced Targeting array to further reduce cover saves chances, for a total of four S5 AP5 small blasts twin-linked @ BS5 no less; and an Arc Blaster, a three-shot S6 Shredding Haywire weapon, meaning a full Maniple of three can swoop in and destroy a Spartan in a single shooting phase (even a fucking Knight if you get around the shield), Tau-style. Because the concept of targets surviving more than one turn of shooting is foreign to them. The Arc Blaster may have as much range as a bolter, but remember Swooping FMCs can move up to 24", so add that to their range, and these guys have no trouble at closing in with their T6 (as of Book 7 Inferno) 3+ save protected by a Flare shield (yes, even though they don't have a "front AV"), and can further buy Blessed Autosimulacra, not even mentioning the fact you can only hit them on a 6+ when they are swooping, can Jink and can't suffer Pens like regular aircraft do (but are subject to Grounded Tests) -- Strato-Automata also ignore the 'Methodical' portion of 'Programmed Behavior' and have more freedom when picking shooting targets, enabling them to better operate beyond Cortex Controller range (do note it makes no mention of 'Onslaught', so try to Swoop as much as possible/mind your positioning when Gliding!). And for those who haven't looked at the Flying Monstrous Creature rules in a dog's age, remember they behave like Jump units when Gliding, meaning they can dance those mean 48" range "fuck your cover" Setheno guns a full 12", reliably staying out of range of most infantry that could ever pose a threat to them. For the most part disregard the optional Power Blades: at S4 WS3 you don't want them in melee, and Vector Strike doesn't benefit from either Rending or Smash. These Obama drones devilish automated flyers are good the way they are.
    • The Vultarax are not nearly praised enough, and I don't see them in many lists. Seriously, these flying nightmares are borderline broken. Since you will mostly face Space Marine Legions when playing Mechanicum, a way to deal with their heavy armour is a must. A unit of just two can reliably wreck anything (even a Spartan thanks to Rite of Destruction). In either case, a unit of one or two should almost be considered an auto-include, at least if your local meta uses vehicles other than Rhinos.
  • Arvus Lighter: The Arvus is a flittery little thing, holding 12 models, but nothing else at a bone-stock price of 75 points. It does get a rather broad list of upgrades and weapons, which might give it survivability, but with Rhino stats it's not going to really go that much once it unloads its squad. Best kept mostly cheap and used to Deep strike 12-man secutarii hoplites or peltast with arc rifle in front of enemy tanks working like a flying Rhino/Drop Pod with good options, but the points cost is too high to make it disposable, so use it to place something nasty where your opponent is most vulnerable. If you do take any weapons on this, twin-link them! It's only 5pts more.
    • It can be upgraded to carry 1 Castellax OR 2 Voraxes but nothing else, best for paragon-model, but too expensive between basic cost+ upgrade+ MC inside it, the good thing is that they will survive for sure to the Explosion! result
    • Looking at the weapons, there's not much point getting the multi-laser, due to the low rate of fire and the fact that an autocannon does the job of light vehicle hunting much better. Select from the Auto and Lascannon based on whether you want it targeting light or heavy armour respectively.
    • Hilariously, this thing can get a freaking Flare shield.
  • Terrax Pattern Termite Assault Drill:: The old school Termite from Epic is back, and Mechanicum can use them as well. Full rules can be found on Forgeworlds website. The Termite is a 12 capacity transport (not dedicated transport, and cannot transport models that are bulky or above) with 12/12/10 armor and 3 HP. It comes with two TL Volkite Chargers that can be exchanged for Heavy Flamers for free. You can also buy it Blessed Autosimulacra, Extra Armour and Armoured Ceramite if you wish, but that seems like overkill for what is essentially a reverse Drop Pod. Speaking of Drop Pods, this thing works exacly like a Drop Pod when playing it from reserves, i.e you drill in half of your Termites on turn 1, and then the rest can enter like normal reserves. Instead of dropping from the sky, the Termite digs up from below, and when it does you place a large blast where you want it and scatter just like a drop pod. Vehicles and fortifications that are under the blasts final location take a str 10 hit (no AP) that is resolved on vehicles side armour. Other units take a str 6 AP 4 hit instead. The blast marker becomes permanent difficult terrain after the Termite has fucked the ground up, and then the Termite can be placed on the table where the blast marker was placed, 1" away from any units. It there are still models in the way, the controlling player moves them so they are 1" away from the Termite. If they can't do this, they are crushed and removed from the table, so this could be used to do some fuckery. The following turns the Termite can crawl around as it wishes (but never faster than combat speed, and it can never move flat out).
    • For 85 points a pop, the Termite could be an effective way to get some bodies up the table. The first thought is to use this for getting squads of Tech Thralls to objectives while you support them with heavy firepower from your side of the table.
    • The Melta Cutters rule allows the Termite to ignore difficult and dangerous terrain. It also adds +2 to its strength when ramming fortifications.
    • Another use could be to get a unit of Secutarii Hoplites in range to zap a high priority vehicle to death.
    • The third option is dropping a bunch of Scyllax in the vicinity of a soft target.

Heavy Support[edit]

  • Thanatar Class Siege-Automata Maniple: 250 a pop, but they're T8, S8 2+. Go look up a picture and see how sexy they are. They get Hellex Plasma Mortars for Instant Death on marines and wiping out Terminator Squads. They're also one of the models in your army that can get the Paragon of Metal upgrade, because you've put so many points into this guy that you might as well make him even more durable. Searchlights are so cheap they might as well be a free upgrade, keep in mind that at T8 they should be able to deal with anything that shoots at them, and the Enhanced Targeting array helps a lot, both with its Mortar and the Twin-Linked Mauler Bolt Cannon (use the cannon second to finish off whatever the Mortar does not). Want to see your enemies cry?
    • Got too much time, too much money, and too many Terminators running at you to the point photon weapons just don't cut it? Take a unit of more than 1, take Advanced Targeting, now here's the important part; Cyber-Occulari. You are now BS6, and likely able to use the Occulari LoS, the result is a unit that keep its shots in a very tight grouping. A cortex controller will likely be needed, to stop some pesky quick distraction-chaff from absorbing the plasma-wrath.
      • Something to keep in mind is that despite being S8, T8 they assault poorly, like the Destructors they have 2 attacks base and this cannot be increased like a Castellax, and at WS3 they'll be lucky to kill one model per turn. Any enemy will be interested in tying these things up in combat,as that's 250 pts (if it's only one) that'll be sitting the entire game out.
      • Watch the fuck out for Instant Death weaponry, even more so than the rest of your high-point army. While it's rare you do not want any 250 point model (base) to suddenly die because Mortarion teleported right next to him then kicked his ass in assault, or failing that any Dark Angels consul with a jump pack and Terran Greatsword. Another guy who can do this is Alpharius who has an even sneakier way to get close and can charge the turn he is revealed. And good fucking lord dont let Sanguinius charge you with that spear of his. This is too huge problem to the point that if you know your opponent is using one of these Primarchs, consider not even fielding Thallax. There's other ways to ID it too, like a Praetor with a Combat Augment Array who made their Paragon Blade roll a six and beheaded your Thanatar (somehow, or more likely impaled its cortex, the Mechanicum didn't bother giving them necks). Be really really careful. So keep them screened with tech-thralls, even in a Legio Cybernetica list. While he's not sneaky, Vulkan wounds your plasma death robots on 2s unlike the other primarchs mentioned and will instant death them, so be super careful around him
  • Thanatar-Calix Class Siege-Automata: This is the guy who puts the "Siege" in "Siege-Automata". The mortar is replaced with an S10 Lascannon (yes, a single, one-shot-per-turn lascannon, unfortunately) but this Thanatar gets an additional Graviton Ram in return, which can be used in shooting as a moderately effective template weapon with Haywire or in melee as an S10 AP 1 armourbane weapon which gets bumped up to str D against buildings(!) However this guy is a whopping 295 points, so make those potential str D hits happen or you're not getting those points back.
    • Never, ever let him be assaulted by infantry (and don't be dumb enough to charge infantry with him). The template weapon forces a strength test instead of rolling to wound - in HH most infantry are S4, so you're going to need 5+ to wound and they can still make 3+ saves. However, against weak tarpit units with low strength, it could work quite well - morale checks caused my this template are taken with a Ld -2 modifier, so you can scare off potential tarpits. A S10 AP1 close combat attack is mostly wasted on infantry, being not at all any more effective than the base S8 AP2 that a normal Thanatar would have.
    • This Thanatar is a death sentence against vehicles. If it can get close enough, a single turn can see it firing a S10 AP2 Lascannon and a haywire template, then charging in with 3 S10 AP1 Armourbane hits in melee. (Don't charge transports unless you've got something else to engage the occupants with in CC - it can't be stressed enough how tremendous a waste this guy is in melee with infantry.)
    • Where this guy really takes the spotlight is in attacks on Fortifications. Against those, it can do the same as to vehicles (minus the haywire) but DEALING STRENGTH D HITS instead of S10. With the monstrous number of hull points fortifications can have (looking at you, Primus Redoubt) this can be a huge help, and really, that strength D hit is where your points are going to, so you'd better make some of those hits.
    • This guy is 300 points. He moves 6 inches a turn and cannot run. His target is a building on the other side of the table. If you plan to get this guy in your army at all, he'll have to be the Paragon of Metal. First off, he's going to draw a lot of fire - no, really, a lot. At T8 W4 2+5++, he can tank a good number of hits but you'll want the chance to regenerate because there is a solid chance he may never reach his target otherwise. Secondly, this guy is going to be headed straight for the toughest part of your opposing forces, and while he's tough as nails, most cortex-controlling units don't can't withstand nearly as much. An enemy could easily kill this Thanatar's controller and drink your tears as the Thanatar runs off to charge at infantry. While most automata can function reasonably well without cortex control (either they stay way back and don't get distracted by nearby enemies, or it doesn't matter because you want them to attack whatever's convenient), a focused, controlled beeline to fortifications is what this guy needs to do, and if you lose control of him that's essentially 300 points down the drain.
      • Plop a group of equally slow Tech-Thralls in front to screen him from charges. Plop a unit of what ever Tech-Priest Auxilia you feel like (Any other combos will actually do alright) behind it and get ready to make battlesmith rolls.
      • Annoyingly this thing suffers a notably less-chronic case of "Secutor Syndrome" in that it has a similarly-priced cousin (once kitted out) that's X times more effective: Knight Errants. Of course those are LoW's and this isn't. The Calix has some edges other it: the fantastic range of its S10 Lascannon and the haywire template will likely knock off Hullpoints; both however will eventually need to make the crunch and the Errant can actually deal with a multitude of issues and moves a shitload faster... though its Meltacannon is subject to Armoured Ceramite. Nor will it be nearly as harmed by Flare-shielding as it has no-blast weapons; there for the Errant will have to rely almost entirely on its melee, where as this doesn't have too. Issue is though most of the time you can "rely on the D", especially when it travels so damned fast.
  • Thanatar Cynis: Once upon a time, the Magi of Estaban III were wondering if they could make cheaper Thanatars; they failed and Ryza was really upset. It results in the marginally more expensive Thanatar-Cynis. You ever wanted a giant plasma shotgun? You now have it! You were wondering where that Gets Hot was? It's here! This baby has two Plasma Ejectors: 18" (It's Mechanicum), S8, Ap2, Heavy 2, 3" blast, Plasma wave (with gets hot)... and a Mauler-Bolt cannon. It's short range may make it awkward to use, but correctly deployed it will ruin whatever squad is unfortunate to stand before it.
    • Though expensive, it could be used against cheap-infantry blobs in a pinch by dint of sheer spammyness, though this obviously wastes its power. It's better used against TEQ and MEQs.
      • Vulkan has a squad of these to bathe him each morning. Keep them the hell away from him, but against every other Primarch start giggling; especially Angron as he cannot even use his standard save vs the Mauler-bolt cannon!
    • The Rite of Destruction is ludicrous when used with this Automata, EIGHT STRENGTH EIGHT AP2 BLASTS! (And 6 Mauler Bolt Cannon shots) But you better have something ready to guard it while it cools down, as it will be unable to shoot for the next turn. So make sure that when you use Rite of Destruction on your nearly 300 point model that it's on something that you absolutely, positively must destroy.
  • Krios Battle Tank Squadron: Farmer Joe's angry Tractor. These sex bots are 13/12/10 3HP with a flare shield. Aww crispy biscuits yeeeaaah!! They're fast and can be taken in squadrons of 3. Start off at 125, and can take a Pulsar Fusil for 25 extra points. (So turn your S7 Ap3 large blast marine eating lightning gun into a S9 Ap2 ordnance 4 tank killer. Weapons can be mixed in squadrons.) They also have Autosimulacra and access to Anbaric claws and Volkite sentinels. With Mauler Bolt Cannons, Irradiation engines, the 3-shot battlecannon on the paladin, and more anti-MEQ, I would almost always go Venator.
    • If you're taking the Venator (as you should), never forget to upgrade your tanks with one or two Volkite sentinels. Just having the Pulsar Fusil leaves them extremely vulnerable to Weapon Destroyed results if you get penetrated. Trust me, having one of these tanks without a weapon is not fun. They just become worthless tractors.
      • Alternative view, take em naked and cheaper, take at least 2 extra armour if you make a squadron of em. Volkite sentinel are useless, would have been a cool and cheap TL bolter for 5pts but 15 pts for a volkite gun is too much, on 3 Krios are 45-90 pts wasted (conversion is still cool), considering that often thanks to the flare shields they will be wrecked with glancing hits, and rarely a penetrating one, that often have less than the 16% of chance to cause weapons to be destroyed.
  • Macrocarid Explorator: The "Build Your Land Raider" construction kit™. Starting at 195 points you pay for a basic Land Raider chassis, which being Mechanicum comes stock with Blessed Autosimulacra and Extra Armour, Anbaric Claw and placeholder weapons (2 Lascannons and a Mauler Bolt Cannon, none of them twin linked). Then you can choose any of the dozens of options to kit it out, some of the options have been removed with the release of the Taghmata Army list book. You can make any and all type of pre- and post-heresy LR's (except Terminus Ultra, Ares, Achilles or Redeemer) and even some homebrew patterns that don't exist on any sacred blueprints (you filthy Heretek). Explorators can't be take as Dedicated Transport (for now). So you have to make the choice between customized firepower or the Triaros with ability to tank shock, re-roll Dangerous Terran tests and 15 points of frontal armor.
    • You seriously have a broad range of options, though being limited in capacity you'll gravitate to make your Macrocarid as tough as possible and the Explorator Augury Web takes away yet another precious transport slot. Instead, take Armoured Ceramite and Flare shield base: A neat tactic with the Macrocarid is to use it as a mobile wall for Thallax, pop out, shoot, then use your assault move to dash behind it again and grab popcorn as you watch your enemy try to deal with what effectively is AV15/AV16. As for your weapons, you'll need to decide what kind of enemies you want to target and how specialized or tactical you want your Macrocarid to be. You can't take pintle weapons, that's heresy too.
      • Irradiation Engines are worthy of special mention here, the Macrocarid being one of only two units in the entire Heresy that can mount them. You can equip the sponsons with these murder-projectors for a cheeky 40 points. Watch entire Marine formations wilt when given a double rad-shower, even when hidden in the heaviest of fortifications. This poses a couple of limitations to your firepower, no AP2 and short range.
      • Against light infantry blobs you can Upgrade the Mauler Bolt Cannon to a Volkite Culverin (Heavy 4|S6|Deflagrate) for free. Too bad it's not twin-linked. Phased plasma fusils being TL+AP3 will also deliver.
      • Against heavy infantry, namely Marines, the best weapons are the TL Phased plasma fusil and sponson TL Mauler Bolt Cannons, all those being AP3 and wounding on 2+.
      • Against armoured targets your hull weapon will be either the tried-and-true Lascannon (long range S9), Conversion Beamer or fort-killer Multi-melta (forts can't get Armoured Ceramite). As for sponsons, it's TL Lascannons which are valid options at 20 pts.
        • Best way to use Macrocarid is as a gun platform, it's a bit wasted but with a great amount of Ap3 at short range. The best units to put inside are obviously Myrmidon of both types (love destructors with irradiation engine), Peltast with arc rifle (so you can melt tank with em and then riddle the inside occupants with Macrocarid graviton/mauler/laser, and the same with Secutors).
  • Myrmidon Destructors: Similar to Myrmidon Secutors, but have Preferred Enemy (Everything!), which is pretty great at BS5, though they can only pick 1 weapon. Also their models are freaking awesome. Their options are all more specialized to targeting a specific type of enemy and as such it's best to give them all one type of weapon rather than picking and choosing between several (with the exception of Irradiation Engines). They also can take a Triaros for delivering RAD-PHAGE.
    • Give them all Volkite Culverins to watch Orks and Guard (or any 5+ save unit) cry all day long, on average without cover saves you'll actually kill more models than you shoot.
    • For 2+ saves, Photon Thruster Cannons are good at forcing even Primarchs to take a lot of saves and chip away at Terminator squads thanks to their AP2 and incredible range.
    • Graviton Imploders Are fucking dogshit on these guys now. You nearly double the cost of the Destructor for getting half the wounds they used to (or less). Also Preferred Enemy gives you no bonus now they wound like grav-weapons. They also have armour pen on 3D6, which means they'll be lucky to glance the front of a Rhino, instead of managing to immobilize Spartans like they used to.
    • Irradiation Engines are your Marine removers, giving the whole squad these is overkill (remember that Torrent weapons can be placed differently to a standard Flamer and they have PREFERRED ENEMY EVERYTHING, Fleshbane and rerollable to-wound), and considering how much 2+ armour there is in 30K it's better used alongside the Photon Thruster, either to remove the 2+ Sergeant before nuking the squad, or using it to wipe the squad and exposing the Sergeant before shooting him.
    • Lastly Conversion Beamers are only really the optimal choice if you're up against other Mechanicum where you'll likely be facing a lot of high Toughness monsters and the S6 from the Photon Thrusters doesn't quite cut it, but at that point you're better off with a Thanatar.
      • An important question to ask, especially within a Taghmata list is "why isn't an Enginseer squad doing this?" - hence you will often not have a Conversion beamer Destructor squad unless you're absolutely terrified of scatter and want to reroll to wound.
    • Something to keep in mind is that despite the Powerfist the Destructors don't do all that great in assault, this is because they're locked at 2 attacks base and can't get that boosted to 5 like the Castellax can, they're not bad, as in they'll hold their own against tactical squads and the like, but dedicated assault units will mulch right through them and dedicated tarpits will render them useless.
      • Heavily consider putting your Magos in with this squad; it will grant Preferred Enemy to them and they can help the squad in assault. A Reductor fits really well with them and also the various primes mostly because it's hard to find a good bodyguard unit and eventually he can tank low VP ID hits (2+ 3++ hardened armour paired with R6 can help against some storm cannon/knight gatling or random phosphex/scorpius against the unit, even medusa and basilisk).
      • Destructors with Volkite Culverins or I-rad are the way to go against the Solar Auxilia (remember the S.A.-first-turn-combo aegis+shrouded invalidates most of the wounds/damages inflicted), you can ignore their Aegis defence lines with RAD or rape infantry from turn 2 onward with the Culverins.
  • Karacnos Assault Tank: Basically a Triaros without transport capacity and with some guns slapped on. The Karacnos trades the armament of the Triaros for 2 Lightning-Blaster sentinels and a Karacnos Mortar battery and a larger explosion result if it goes kaboom. The Lightning-Blast sentinels can fire separate from the mortar and snap shot at BS2, they're basically short range autocannons with a worse AP that are Heavy 3 with Shred & Rending. Decent vs light Armour. The Mortar is a R60 heavy bolter with barrage, small blast, fleshbane, radphage, Ignores cover and Pinning which seems good on paper but with the majority of targets getting armour saves this mostly equates to a longer range Wyvern. I'm not sure this tank is good enough for its price tag which is just 25 shy of a stock Thanatar, for 100 point less and in squadron it would have been good.

Lords of War[edit]

  • Imperial Knights
    • Knight Errant: Identical to GW rules, minus the ability to mount additional Heavy Stubbers
    • Knight Paladin: See above
    • Knight Lancer: A good character and monster killer, though its cost is right up there with the Primarchs, it'll take on nearly everything you send it at and come out on top aside from the aforementioned Primarchs (and it can still do very well against them if they're Init 1 or S6-7 since it's Strength D).
    • Knight Acheron: Just as excellent at wrecking armour as the Castigator is at wrecking infantry, though in the Taghmata dealing with armour isn't that much of an issue, and you have to close in and assault the enemy to deal with the armour effectively, leaving the Acheron a giant target. It also doesn't benefit from many of the bonuses you can offer, isn't as good at character/monster hunting as the Lancer (thanks to no close combat Invuln save) and the Styrix has better guns to deal with Infantry. It isn't a bad choice on its own but your own units can usually do what it does just as well, if not better.
    • Questoris Knight Styrix: The long-ranged Marine remover, it's not such a great idea to take this over the other knights if you want to assault the enemy (admittedly a non-competitive way of playing) but it can be awesome in a gunline. Any Marine squad it hits it'll wreck thanks to Deflagrate and AP3, boost it with a Djinn-skein and mathematically it kills 6.365 Marines with that one gun per turn. It also packs a grav gun for slowing the enemy down when they close in, though the siege claw can be skipped as you have other ways of dealing with Armour and the Rad Cleanser is unlikely to make its points back unless you're up against Tyranids or Orks.
    • Acastus Knight Porphyrion: The new knight on the block, and a big, beefy, shooty one at that. It weighs in at 495 points and has BS5, 14/13/12, and 8 HP as standard. It also comes with Blessed Autosimulacra in a Taghmata list. It's main weapons are a TL Magna Lascannon (72" S10 AP2 Ordnance 2, Large Blast) on each arm, and an Ironstorm Missile Pod (72" S6 AP4 Ordnance 1, 7" Blast) on its back, which can be swapped with Helios Defense Missiles (60" S8 AP2 Heavy 2, Skyfire, Interceptor) for free. It's secondary weapons are not a heavy stubber, but two autocannons, which can be individually upgraded to Irad cleansers or lascannons. Clearly this thing is built around tearing down vehicles or Monstrous Creatures, though it can be used in wiping away infantry one pie plate at a time.


  • Ordinatus-Minoris Macro Engine: Comes in three flavours, and if you ever run them against someone, they're probably not your friend. Each Ordinatus comes with three Volkite Culverins, Blessed Autosimulacra, Anabaric Claw, Armored Ceramite and a Ordinatus Dispersion shield. Oh and 14/13/13 with 14HP and is a super heavy. But if it explodes anything under will probably die as it utilises it's own destruction chart which every one of the results always has a Destroyer hit. The Dispersion shield is the big thing on this machine. Basically it's a super Flare Shield that loses effectiveness overtime but will always have an affect. Turn one :-3 Strength to shooting attacks and rolls on the D chart, Turn two: -2 Strength to shooting attacks and D Chart and Turn three and subsequent turns -1 Strength to shooting and D charts. Basically don't shoot it with D as you'll never be stripping off those hull points.
    • Ordinatus Sagittar: Because fuck that model (or that unit), it didn't deserve to be on the table, even at that distance. A 180" Strength D weapon with an Apocalyptic Blast that royally fucks over vehicles might seem OP, but that's because it is, though at its extremely expensive cost it will need some protection, though if you fight Marines often, and combined with its dispersion shield, it can easily make its points back by turn 3 so long as you keep its guns pointed where they belong, at the priciest unit within 180".
    • Ordinatus Ulator: The one displayed from FW Open day, This big ass sonic projector will have people kicking you in the nuts every time you shoot it. 72" Range Strength X AP2 Pinning Armourbane Instant Death Ignores Cover Ulator Sonic Wave. Place down a Massive blast template(7") at the edge of the hull. Direct it at an enemy (Has to be enemy first and can hit friendlies) and draw a straight line using the Massive blast template. Anything that gets partially touched by it takes a hit from the following Table. (This also includes Flyers. Yes. Even Flyers.)
      • The Ulator is one of the few things in the game that is effective against everything that isn't a Primarch (or that has Eternal Warrior). You can effectively use it to fill in any hole your army develops, lost Anti-tank? Strength 8-10 with Armourbane at AP2. Hordes got you down? Strength 5 ID Massive Blast template will thin them out. Air defence gone? Just shoot those fliers down. Your opponent brought their Baneblade(s) (or their variants)? You shoot them with Strength D, and on top of all of this, you literally CANNOT miss a single shot you ever fire. Also note that it is incredibly potent against Gargantuan Creatures, as it removes D3 wound per wound suffered because of Instant Death, surpassing their Feel No Pain as most lack Eternal Warrior. Useful against that prick who thought he could curbstomp with Wraithknights in a 30k game.
    • Ordinatus Aktaeus: After first being field-tested to catch a road runner, Forgeworld AcM3 decided the Ordinatus Aktaeus should be repurposed as a war machine, where it's presumably been a little more successful.


  • Warhound Scout Titan: The same Titan as the Ordo Reductor, it has one extra void shield and night vision for the same price as post-heresy one Warhound, Even though 6-th edition nerfed D-strength a lot (no more +1 on damage chart), take a DB TLD for dealing with Terminators and Characters, and a Vulcan Mega-Bolter boosted with a Djinn-skein for the squads as on average against 3+ marines you'll kill 10.416 Marines per use of the Mega-Bolter.
  • Reaver Battle Titan: Again, The same Titan as the Ordo Reductor, it's the Warhounds bigger, tougher, meaner and slower brother. Destroyer blast spam is still the preferable weapon loadout (especially with the points level you'll be likely using this guy at), but in 30K there's nothing wrong with choosing Gatling blaster (because fuck Marines) or a Melta cannon. Curiously it can take a Vortex support missile for a carapace weapon, you lose a lot of your average firepower, so compensate by getting something with more blasts instead of going all Strength, but the missile is capable of one-shoting any other lord of war (besides another Reaver) by removing D3 SP from super-heavies or just insta-killing any other model (yes, even Primarchs) with no saves of any kind allowed, but it is one use only, so use it wisely.
  • Warlord Battle Titan: 2750 pts for quite possibly the hardest damned motherfucker out there; 30 HP, 15/15/14, 5+ Invuln, haywire immunity, Armoured ceramite and 6 void shields and it pretty much ignores anything in melee besides other titans. It is bristling with Anti-aircraft firepower atop it with its Ardex (Essentially Cognis) Mauler boltcannons and TL Lascannons. Now some notes on the meat of it!
    • If you're taking this to spew D weapons, you're in for a disappointment as 2850pts total would "only" fire 8 D blasts; 2 Belicosa volcano's and 2 Reaver Laser blasters, though the former weapon will produce 2 10" reroll 1's on D table. If you wanna spam D, take a Reaver, it will work out cheaper in every single way.
    • What this is good for however, is abusing its World Burner rule to turn the battle field into a charnel house where only true Titans, the lucky, and those with Flare shields may live to wretch in the ashen pork world that was left behind. This rule lets you use your Blast based weapons (all bar melee effectively) against whatever the hell you want: Baptise them in fire!
      • Of course, you'll need the right tools for the job. Standard are two aforementioned Belicosa pattern volcano cannons, a very good all round choice and in the event you don't have worthy backup against other Titans, stick with these. Other arm mounted weapons include Sunfury plasma annihilators, PW4, Apoc barrage, force rerolls on cover,at S9AP2, remember Apocalyptic Barrage follows all the rules of regular barrage and thus would hit side armour and having two would effectively up you to having a PW8 profile. Mori-Quake cannons are similar to the regular quake cannons (D to 9 to 6), at AP3 they're kinda lackluster but it makes for it via making units move far slower (Half movement, no running/flat-out/charge, all movement is dangerous terrain for next turn), a Direct hit with this will likely heavily delay a Spartan from reaching its destination in time, which could be extremely important. Saturnyne lascutters are fun, they double as a melee and hellstorm weapon. The Latter is S9, AP2 Instant death, making it perfect for mulching Mechanicum, the former it will possess a D, Machine Destroyer (Reroll 1's on D table) and ID again, which is relevant against Gargantuan creatures (Each D wound scored will inflict D3 wounds.). Next up is the Arioch Power Claw: D Melee, +1 attack Machine destroyer; at least you'll look rad *New upgrade revealed at the 2016 Horus Heresy Weekender: splash out 75 pts and slap on a Vulcan Mega Bolter so you can smash and shoot! This then just leaves the Macro-gatling blaster looking a bit out in the woods: PW6, 5", Pinning at S10 AP3. It's really for just completely removing Marines from the board.
      • Next up are the Assortment of carapace weapons (minimum 24"). These are all taken in a pair (the Ardex weapons cannot be changed). Standard are two Apocalypse Launchers, shrug.... wait a second. The Apocalypse Launchers have uses: the Barrage 4 firepower and AP3 allows you to kill Marines in cover quicker than standard blast weapons and then there is Titan dueling. If you are playing massive Apocalypse games with ranges over 100" these are perfect for smashing down other titans void shields and exposing them to your Belicosa Volcano Cannons: those Laser Blasters are no use if out range and will lose the extreme distance battle to the launcher-equipped Warlord everytime. Then come in the DL-Turbolasers, TL-Vulcan Mega bolters, and Titan Plasma blastguns, for free. The Reaver-grade weapons are all 100 pts: Laser blasters, Meltacannons (which will look real fucking stupid with all this AC around) and Gatling Blasters. Then some uniques come in: 2x Vortex missile banks for 150 pts, which essentially let you fling out a total of 4 of these missiles throughout the game (its the "Eh" 40k version). And 75 pts Incinerator missile banks: PW10, No cover, Apoc Barrage, one use each at S6 AP3; for when all the marines must die turn 1.
      • You can probably tell now, the resultant purpose of these Titans is destroy any supporting forces as quickly as possible, before destroying other super heavies in a barrage of unrelenting firepower across a number of turns and slugging it out, where as the Reaver is probably just blasting down enemy super heavies. In either case you may wish to sit down, take a look at your bank-statements and wonder how on earth you are going to be reasonably transporting this to the secret Drug-Cartel hideout where they fight each other with Titan Legions.

Legio Cybernetica Unit Analysis[edit]

The Legio Cybernetica is a Taghmata variant that focuses on robots. Every slot's gotta have robots! Like the Ordo Reductor, Legio Cybernetica draws from the main list of Taghmata units and receives a number of benefits and penalties.

  • Unique HQ - Archmagos Dominus: An exclusive HQ choice for Legio Cybernetica detachments.
  • Rule of the Dominus: Your Compulsory HQ must be a Magos Dominus, Archmagos Dominus, or one of the two special characters: Inar Satarael or Anacharis Scoria. In addition, if your primary detachment is from Legio Cybernetica, your opponent gains +d3 Victory Points if they manage to remove all your Cortex Controllers.
  • Legion of Steel: Your Compulsory Troops MUST be 2-strong Castellax units each (keep in mind these are still not scoring). The first Fast Attack and Heavy Support choices MUST have the Cybernetica Cortex rule; once you have a robot in there, you're free to buy whatever else you desire. But what you desire is more robots anyway, right?
  • Enhanced Cyber-control: What truly defines Legio Cybernetica. Your Cortex Controller and Cybertheurgy ranges is increased to 24" from 12". In addition all models with a Cybernetica Cortex in the detachment have +1 Iniative to their profile.

The main advantages of Legio Cybernetica is that their robots can be spread around without fear of losing control and the increased Initiative has the potential to radically alter the outcome of your close combats. Vorax will strike before most marines, Castellax and their ilk will strike at initiative, and in mirror fights they will all strike first. The penalty is that you are forced to buy four Castellax just to make a legal list. Castellax recently got a 20 points increase, making them a very costly affair. And if you lose your Cortex Controllers, the opponent gets free victory points; at lower point levels it's likely that you will only have one in your list...

HQ[edit]

  • Archmagos Dominus: Everyone can field normal Dominus, but only you can bring their boss. You pay for what you get, and that's a lot. However, he does the same thing a normal Dominus does: use Cybertheurgy and Battlesmith instead of shooting all day long, but now at Ld10. His WS4 and I3 makes him mediocre in CC for his huge cost. Don't get us wrong, he can succeed by dint of sheer resilience when kitted up properly - T6 W4 IWND FnP(5+) and six S5 AP2 attacks (2 of them Shredding Armourbane) is great in anyone's book...but you could have brought 2 Castellax for that. Then why use it? Because only he can properly use the Cortica Primus relic, making a unit of 3+ Battle-automata (otherwise not worth it) live up to their Monstrous Creature names and unleash the might of the Cybernetica! But that's always too costly. Think again: 5 Voraxes cost less than 10 Termies. Use Rite of Fury. Now your enemy is in for 30 S6 AP2 attacks at I5 + HoW, not to mention the opening salvo, all delivered by 15 T6 worth of Fearless wounds that don't need a transport and can pry open Land Raiders. Yes, you just both Nope'd a Primarch's retinue AND tarpitted him. And the Archmagos doesn't even need to be with them because of the 24" Controller range!
  • Anacharis Scoria: Anacharis can be your Warlord in a Legio Cybernetica detachment, and really that's where he shines. See the Taghmata section.
  • Inar Satarael: Also a Warlord for Legio Cybernetica. See the Taghmata section.

Ordo Reductor Unit Analysis[edit]

We've gone from the Mechanicum list with the least options to the one with the most in one book!

The Ordo Reductor's initial list, main troop choice and dedicated transport was in HH1: Betrayal and is a campaign allied detachment list when playing an Isstvan 3 re-enactment. At first there was only a unique HQ unit but then the Magos Dominus from book two became available to the Ordo Reductor (called Magos Reductor) and has been updated since. With the release of the new Red book for Mechanicum we have now the best and most varied tanks of the Mechanicum, alongside some exclusive options, like the new old Minotaur. The new list makes Ordo Reductor list extremely viable, capable of some OP/borderline stupid combinations (12 PHOSPEX MEDUSAS!), becoming like a powered up version of the Legion Rites of War. The Iron Warriors are the best at siege? Pfft! Amateurs! Mechanicum sees what your legion does and cranks it up to 11!

Bonuses:

  • Walkers in Ruin: Any unit in this detachment is immune to Pinning by enemy fire and is also immune to Difficult and Dangerous terrain (Rubble, Ruins, Minefields and Trenchworks). No more tanks fucking themselves in terrain - You can bring enough Phosphex to cover substancial portions of the battlefield and leave only the 4 previous terrain types unscathed, a reasonable counter against faster armies.
  • Engines of Destruction: Allows us to take Minotaur batteries, Artillery batteries and (Arch)Magos Reductor - Coupled with the Matrix of Ruin you can shove down 12 Phosphex shells a turn to be truly obnoxious.

Restrictions:

  • The Master of the Covenant: Compulsory HQ Choice has to be (Arch)Magos Reductor or special character Caleb Decima.
  • Patterns of Force: Must take Thallax Cohorts as the compulsory Troops choice unless you bring a titan (Warhound and above) when you can bring the titan guard. Furthermore, a Reductor list may not contain more Battle-automata or Siege Automata units than half the total number of units in the detachment regardless of the detachments type (e.g.: if a primary detatchment force made from an Ordo Reductor war covenant comprises a total of six units, up to three of them can be Battle-automata) - Thallax are one of your best options, so not much of a downside there.

The Matrix of Ruin[edit]

  • Compulsory: 1 HQ, 2 Troops, 2 Heavy Support.
  • Optional: 1 HQ, 3 Troops, 2 Heavy Support, 2 Elites, 2 Fast attack, 2 Lords of War.
  • The Unfetted Wrath of the Machine: All Tanks are scoring in the enemy deployment zone in Age of Darknes missions, aka 30k, OR gain Objective Secured in Maelstrom of War missions instead - Bring an Archimandrite for sweet IWND on your scoring, dangerous terrain-ignoring tanks.
  • Can't take Fortifications or allies - You're a destroyer, not a builder. Thus, Macroteks are less useful for you.

This OPTIONAL Reductor-exclusive version of the Onslaught FOC can be seen as a RoW within a RoW. A small modification to the FOC but a significant one none the less, it exchanges versatility for sheer firepower, but unless you bring the right units the loss of versatility can become a major problem. Compared to the Onslaught FOC (HH:LACAL p.10), which is available to all 30k, the Matrix of Ruin gains 1 Troop choice and better Tanks without relinquishing the ability of going first, but at the cost of 2 Elite slots and a higher minimum cost. Compared to the normal Age of Darkness FOC you lose 1 HQ, 1 Troop, 2 Elites, 1 FA, Fortifications and Allies, but gain 1 HS and 1 LoW. But it truly shines in 40k - OS Triaros were difficult to deal with, try dealing with OS Krios Venators.

HQ[edit]

  • Magos Reductor: Who needs Decima? Forget about his Book 2 incarnation, the update has improved this guy big time giving him IC (but not Precision Shots) and better stats than the average Magos. He can be upgraded to Archmagos gaining Relentless, the option to choose "-1 to a piece of cover" as his WT instead of rolling for it and getting a 5 in WS, BS, S & T. Even a campaign Archmagos Reductor OC has little room left for stat-improving (so he can get extra rules faster!). Ahem, the new book also tinkered with his wargear adding exclusive options like Phosphex Bombs and Breacher charges, losing the Jetpack and moving around certain options; little modifications that radically change this Magos' builds. He can get a retinue of Reductor Techpriests or Scyllax and all his attacks have Sunder and a +1 on the Vehicle and Building damage tables. Most importantly, he can grant this buff to a nearby Heavy/Ordnance weapon if he doesn't shoot himself and can be combined with Mechanicum WTs, specially Perfected Targeting. Thatatar Calix's single shot S10 not good enough for you? Buff it so it becomes Twin-linked, Sunder, and Explodes them on a 5+. But his best buddy is the Ordinator: an Armourbane + Wrecker + Sunder + extra table damage weapon can kill pretty much anything, so put them together and buff his bombardment attack.

Troops[edit]

  • Scyllax Guardian-Automata Covenant: While they can be taken by everyone (and they're no longer compulsory Troops), there's a synergy the Reductor have with the Scyllax that should be given its own entry. A balanced melee-ish squad, having 2 attacks base that generate an extra attack on a To wound roll of 6. In addition, they can exchange all their attacks (even the extra one for charging) for a Dismemberment attack: +3S AP2 Unwieldy. They also get some decent firepower in the form of Kraken bolters as standard, one of the longest ranged infantry weapons in the whole Mechanicum, AP4 to boot. Nice. WS3 coupled with Relentless, Move through Cover, Night Vision and the usual Mechanicum stats (T5|2W|I3|4+ save) and the possibility to have up to 16 models means the unit is more than just a tarpit unit. Too bad they cost as much as Terminators. Also, like the Servitors they are, they become Fearless when they're within 24" of a Magos...but have to test on their Ld7 to move when away from them, so keep Magi nearby to herd them around. Then why take them? Because they come equipped with a Rad Furnace, which means anyone in base contact with them suffers -1T, while they themselves are immune to it, as well immune to Rad grenades (so they're different/THEIR EFFECTS CAN STACK?!) and Poison & Rad-phage only affects them on a 6+. What does this mean for your Reductor army? That you should either stick a Rad grenade, Abeyant-equipped Archmagos with them since they will be able to Instant Death MEQ's with their regular attacks and attack the nearest foe with your Relentless, Move through Cover unit that doesn't afraid of anything (Fearless). Alternatively put Calleb in one since at S6 he won't even need the Rad Grenades to ID MEQ's (at last, a good unit for him to hang with!) Terminators on sight? Pfft, Rad Furnace + Dismemberment will finish them off, even if they have 2 Wounds. Just remember your Magos isn't affected by the Scyllax's rad (since those can only affect those locked in combat with them, and friendly units cannot be locked in combat with each other). Like all Mechanicum units, they have numerous weapon options, but keep your eyes on the points price.
    • If Assault is your ideal strategy, then load up on Flamers (available to all) and Rad-cleansers (available to only one in four, sadly). Template weapons can help whittle down a lot of blobs real fast (having that much Wall of Death doesn't hurt if you get counter-charged either).
    • If you opt for ranged combat, you'll want the Rotor Cannons. Sure they're weaker in strength than the Volkite Chargers but they put out more shots the Volkites and your regular Bolters do, Relentless meaning you get to fire 4 shots at full 30" range. And they're the cheapest option! Even if you're up against 4+ saves, the heightened volume of fire means you'll inflict more wounds than Kraken Bolters.
    • As for the other "1-in-X can equip Y" items, they're pretty self explanatory. Graviton guns help with slowing infantry and dealing with vehicles that got too close, Plasma guns help with taking out 2+ saves from range (handy if a player puts their Artificer Armour Sergeant in front), and Melta guns are good for leaving at home because your opponent bought Armoured Ceramite and you have better things to deal with vehicles and 2+ saves.

Heavy Support[edit]

  • Ordo Reductor Artillery Tank Battery: The main reason for going Reductor, now we can take artillery Batteries from the legions and field them with impunity. 1-3 Artillery Tanks. Cheaper than the Legion variants, they start as a Whirlwinds with Vengeance and Castellan missiles that can be swapped for Hyperios missiles for free, becoming your best source of anti-air. But that would be a waste because they can upgrade their guns and pretty much become any artillery tank you need and then more, which makes the unit incredibly versatile. All models in the unit must have the same equipped primary weapon. In addition to the usual vehicle options, ours can also get a Machine spirit, Blessed Autosimulacra (or IWND with an Archimandrite) and upgrade to AV13 on the front. That's right, the Ordo Reductor can use its artillery tanks to assault, essentially getting cheaper better Vindicators, so charge, you pig fuckers!. Or you could also extend the life of your Medusas by running away 12" while still firing on the enemy and let your Krios Venators do the assault job. The weapon options are:
    • Demolisher Cannon
    • Quad Lascannon
    • Dual Melta Cannon (a 3" blast Twin-linked Multi-melta)
    • Earthshaker Cannon
    • Medusa Cannon (with access to both Phosphex and normal shells by default)
    • Mars-Colossus Bombard [S7|AP3|Concussive Pinning Massive blast with 12-72" range]
  • Ordo Reductor Minotaur Battery: Up to 3 Minotaurs forming a battery. It's not a Superheavy anymore, but a Heavy Tank (so it can score). Much better than the IA Minotaur by having an enclosed cabin, Autosimulacra, Extra armour, BS4, the chance of having 3 as one HS choice and it's 70 pts cheaper. Like the IA version it has AV14 on the rear by virtue of its rear-facing Flare shield, it's hit on its AV12 side on assaults and can't level its Massive Blast Twin-Linked Earthshaker cannon for direct fire, so it has a 24" blind zone that deep strikers will try to exploit. For that it has access to Armoured Ceramite to whithstand melta blasts, a pintle mounted marine woodchipper Phased-plasma fusil and the Anabaric Claw, which zaps those melee attackers at I10.

Lords of War[edit]

Allies (This covers all three flavours)[edit]

Battle Brothers[edit]

  • Sons of Horus Troop Reavers make excellent scoring units (you took Maloghurst, right?). Just keep them backed up with Castellax and Thallax.
  • Iron Hands They don't really offer us much we don't already have. They do, however, soak up bullets very well, so consider them for forward objective capture.
  • Salamanders Resolutely meh for us. Iron Hands and Iron Warriors capture better.
  • Iron Warriors Tough fuckers who don't mind getting shot. Consider a few drop-pod fulls for capturing forward objectives. Or use them as heavy support whilst using Thallax and Castellax for clearing up dug enemies. Altogether the best legion alongside Mechanicum
  • Raven Guard With their ability to infiltrate infantry, they can sneak a vox anywhere on the field to guide in deep striking Thallax/Ursarax. Consider if that's your play style, otherwise they don't bring us much we don't already have.
  • Knights What's better than two knights palling it it up with your dudes? MORE KNIGHTS! Think this one through though, since we can already take them as lords of war. Knights

Fellow Warriors[edit]

  • Alpha Legion 20 strong Tac Squads that infiltrate on point? Yes please! This said, unless you're looking to take some armor as well, Raven Guard does it better, since they can call in deep strikers. Really it all comes down to how badly you want to field that Sicaran/have a Dreadnought Talon bring it up with your Castellax.
  • Emperors Children
  • Night Lords
  • Death Guard
  • World Eaters
  • Word Bearers
  • Custodes Are an excellent means of adding high initiative troops and 2+ armour. Their vehicles, whilst comparable in firepower and rather durable, an immensely more mobile than AdMech vehicles.
    • Sisters of Silence options whilst cheap, will feel misplaced in a list if you're not careful (Infiltraiting Bolter squads will likely be best bet if you're just taking them for Tax purposes).
    • The vastly more expensive option of Shield Captain + Guard squad will however add an extremely viscious melee unit with a very high initiative value. Give them Teleport Transponders to make up for lacklustre movement, or a Coronus if you are able to drop more points into an allies choice.
    • Elite choices offer a source of even more expensive and swole melee combatants, but fundamentally don't do anything new unlike your mandatory Guard unit.
    • Fast Attack adds some genuinely fast non-flyer options to your list. Jetbikes hyper mobile and capable of running down small, TEQ units. The Pallas is has outflank and some nifty firepower, fed up Rapier batteries opening up the side armour your Triaros convoy or chipping wounds from your Castellax phalanx? Outflank some instant death shots if you feel like forking the points. Venetarii are in many ways akin to Ursarax that get to strke first, but with poorer sustainability (though a 4+ invuln offsets this immensely), however fleet makes them yet more maneuverable than most jump yet. Whilst not as strong as Ursarax (you'll need Meltabombs for vehicles), they dishout many attacks that will be consistently hitting the enemy and wounding MEQs (and vastly better shooting against them as well, the Archeotech Repeater is usable against medium vehicles as well). vs Multiwound TEQ's Ursarax are the clearly superior option.
    • Sagitarrum offer sadly nothing but immensely stylish helmets. The Galatus is remarkably tough as well, though you're not lacking in that either. The Caladius however is one of the few hardy Anti-Tank options more mobile than a Krios Venator should you equip the Heavy Blaze Cannon. The Accelator Cannon is no slouch either, but you'll find yourself making the most of its mobility to get side shots.
  • Sisters
  • Imperial Army May act as objective-bench warmers; possibly bring ordnance onto the field?
    • Though with the increased squad size of Tech-thralls, this may not be such an issue now.
      • Solar Auxilia If you're taking these, you'll probably drop Tech-Thralls immediately; 100pts (Lasrifle section) for 20 man squad, BS4, Rapid Fire 30" or Heavy 2 36", overwatching on BS2, likely to get WS4 and 4+ save is pretty good in anyone's books. Though it has LD8/7, being able to always regroup is pleasant. Also, Lasrifle Sections come stock with a nuncio-vox, which can help your Thanatars and deep-striking Thallax/Ursarax a lot, freeing up your Cyber-occulari to focus on their other forms of mischief, or saving you the trouble of getting the djinn skein altogether, if that's what you were planning to use those for. Alternatively Veletaris offers you some pretty nice potent short range fire power, but any variation of Mechanicum is hardly lacking in that. What you want from an allied choice is most likely cheaper barrage/template options than the Thanatar. The Rapier battery can see this pretty well, with the Quad mortar option filling this best: 60pts for small template spamming with pinning, uniquely possessing a shorter ranged direct fire option which rerolls armour penetration. This takes an elite slot, but you would not be missing anything else in this, probably. The Artillery battery, though durable, is pricey compared to Vanilla guardsmen options (presuming Imperial-Army vanilla will use Chimera based Artillery).
      • Alternatively you may consider the Malcador. Yes a Superheavy as a heavy support option, and a fast super-heavy at that! It costs 5 points less than the Thanatar, you get 13/13/12 HP6 and 3 autocannons (Multi-laster and Hv.Flamer is free) alongside a Leman-Russ cannon, so you could leave it at that. If you feel like dropping 30 points you could get a Demolisher cannon and a Battlecannon firing at the same time (though, you would have to convert either Lascannons to a battlecannon or a hull gun to a demolisher if you're not performing a complete scratch build). If you wanted to fork out 10 more points you could the drop the fast property and ram your self up to front 14, you could then ram Flare shield and Armoured Ceramite, totaling up to 320 pts for vehicle that will take A LOT of shit forward facing and at 6 Hull points you'll be taking that for a while.
      • Imperial Milita and Cults have a dizzying array of options for you to take. You can make Pseudo-Skitarii with a combination of Survivors of the Dark Age and Cyber Augmented, or even get some cultist support if you're playing Dark Mechanicum. Generally they seem to be similar to the Imperial Guard from 40K, in that they have a large number of expendable soldiers backed by tanks, so take them if you want more bodies on the ground. Seriously consider which Provenances of War you give them, generally you will be wanting them to stay in place and camp objectives, so Abhuman Helots with Discipline Collars will work wonders, and if they have Cyber-Augmetics then they count as Sworn Brothers!

Tactical Discussion[edit]

As Allies: Real talk. Legion troops cost a lot. Tactical Squad? 10 bolter marines for 150 points. Buy them a rhino or max them with an apothecary? 200-350 for 1 troop choice with only bolters. When you start looking at non-compulsory options like terminators or tactical support squads they break the bank even worse.

Enter Mechanicum (from book 2). The best way of getting cheap fearless troops into a legion army:

  • 1: Cheap scoring units –The cheapest ally option. A naked Magos Dominus and two units of fearless Tech-Thralls runs around 165 points. That’s two fearless objective campers and a guy who can repair tanks. Now with Taghmata, even cheaper and more blobby!
  • 2: Troop Deathstar –A Magos Dominus, some upgrades, and two scoring Castellax runs around 275 points. That’s ten majority toughness 7 wounds. If you take lance weapons, you have up to 6 48-60” S7, AP2, heavy 2 lance shots (which you can fire TWICE if you don’t roll like a 13 year old with a superiority complex on xbox live). Make them melee oriented and you have an all-around MC hunter or tarpit unit. Or just march it alongside your tactical blob- blow up tanks with your lances and then fury of the legion the assholes inside. If it’s still alive, charge in your MCs.
  • 3: Skimmer + Objective Hunter – Thallax Cohorts are fast and their best feature is reducing cover saves by 2 points. 200 gets you a cohort and a Magos Dominus kitted into a support role. Use the Thallax to uproot objective campers in cover or hunt all those pesky jetbikes, skimmers, and light vehicles. Jink saves against the 2 S7 AP5 and 3 S6 AP3 shots? Bitch please.


Here's something to try: Make a Myrmidon Destructor squadron, four-strong. Pack two with Conversion Beamers and two with Irradiation Engines. Have them joined by the ArchMagos, pray you get the "Free Twin-Linked for a unit within 6"" trait, park in a tower and snipe to your heart's content. Everything comes at you gets cancer, everything that stays away gets Beamed. Be sure to reinforce with Castellax to toss head first at the enemy lines to give them something to keep shooting at.

As for Mechanicum allies; Ally LC with Taghmata, or vice versa. This is primarily to get the Archmagos for the Castellaxs and the Magos-Prime for the Thralls and the IC.

Magos options[edit]

There are so many different setups for Magos of any kind it deserves it own section - if only to avoid cluttering the normal entries for Magos and Tactics.

  • Magos Prime
    • Photonman[1]: The core of this build is a Myrmidax with two Photon Thrusters; with no other upgrades, that comes to 180 points. You'll be spewing out, at 48", 4 AP2 Blind shots - woe betide any Terminator that dares to enter your line of sight.
      • Even with all that firepower, you've still got your hands free - you could keep him cheap, with the default power weapon and serpenta, or kit him out for melee as well if you're shitting points.
      • Of course you've got the full range of Magos-buffers to make him invincible: the Machinator Array, Abeyant, and Cyber-familiar.
      • The biggest benefit to going Arch- is probably the point of BS, but the boosts to the rest of your stat-line certainly don't hurt.
      • Just don't look at how many Photon-Thrusting Destructors you could buy for the same points, or all of this will start to look like a really dumb idea.
    • Archmagos Radfucker: Do you want to win at melee combat? Well for a small payment of 285+ points you can do that all of the time! First take the standard abeyant, cyber familiar and machinator array combo to give him T6 W4 IWND and 2+/3++ and Hardened Armour as well as providing extra weapons. Make him Malagra of course for that extra WS and attack as well as preferred enemy (characters). As for your main weapons take a master crafted chainfist and a power fist to get the two specialist weapons bonus attack. Now he hits 4 times at S8 AP2, with a re-roll for master crafted and two more at S5 AP2 and all these attacks re-roll ones to hit on characters. But we're not done yet,give him rad grenades and a rad furnace for the radioactive cherry on top, that will give enemies -2 toughness on the charge and -1 toughness if they survive any longer. Since you've taken a rad furnace, there's no reason not to give him a Scyllax Automata bodyguard unit since they wont fuck up each other's toughness anymore. Congratulations, you now have a warlord that can tango with Smashfucker and has nothing but instant death weapons to fear.
      • One doesn't particularly need to shell out for a Chain/Power Fist combo, as the Rad causing enemies Toughness to suffer -2 should be enough.
  • Magos Reductor
    • Support (i.e. Naked): Because not everyone can be a Chapter Master and Ordo Reductor lacks Techpriests. The cheapest build, focusing instead in bringing more siege engines and herding your Thanatars around, which are too valuable to have them melee at stuff. Don't even think about getting him guns - his shooting phase will be spent repairing shit, and if he isn't, you're not trying hard enough. Too frail? Give him an Augury scanner to deny infiltration and stick him in a Thallax bodyguard instead of an Abeyant, maybe give him a Machinator for good measure (+1T, +1 Battlesmith). This means not only he gets some dudes to take hits for him, but you can also bring yet another Macrocarid DT, kited with Lascannons so it can function as another siege engine. A LR on the front, two Thanatar at each side, Thallax at the back and the Magos in the middle. That's your Ordo Reductor list right there. And if you have models in Reserve, you can give the LR an Explorator Web. Doesn't look that cheap, but take into account that you were already going to bring LRs and Thanatars, so ~95 pts total.
    • Melee: Fortunately, you can make your Archmagos a 4W T6 2+/3++ monster. Model-wise, this is the most expensive loadout, but it's a good way of using the Reductor's exclusive Rad grenades, Phosphex and Breacher charges (10 pts a piece, ouch). Make him an Archmagos with the obligatory Machinator array so you don't have to worry about the breacher charge either scattering or insta-killing you. Only 125 pts so far, suck on that Caleb! Add invuln for that AP2 weaponry. Maybe also an Abeyant for +1 Wound and sweet IWND. And don't forget the Rad grenades. No guns here, the Machinator's meltagun and flamer are more than enough. However, you can fire the meltagun and another weapon, so throw a Phosphex bomb. Or a Rad-cleanser.
    • Ranged: A normal Reductor with a Photon Thruster/Conversion beamer and Augury Scanner is an interesting tactic and definitely one to consider for your Thanatar-Calix shepherd. It's cheap, makes you durable, and can help bring much needed high Strength/low AP firepower to the field, protect your side from deepstrikers and heal your Thanatar when it needs it, without being unreasonably expensive. You could put this guy in a unit of Scyllax when rounding up your Thanatar because he will make them fearless and then their bolters can then fire at deepstrikers as well as the Magos's heavy weapon. Just ~100 pts there.
  • Deathstars
    • The Radstar: Want to fuck over literally every unit in melee? Well now you can! Take a Magos Reductor w/ Rad-Furnace, Rad Grenades and Abeyant; a Magos Macrotek w/ Rad-Furnace, Machinator Array and Cortica Primus and a unit of 16 Scyllax Guardian-Automata. Every model in this unit is immune to Rad, the Macrotek can repair the Scyllax and in CQC enemies take -2 Toughness, so MEQs will be Instant Deathed. Additionally, the unit is perfectly sized to fit in a Triaros and can Move Through Cover. Finally, the Macrotek can use Cyberthurgy on the entire unit of Scyllax. Have fun with 32 I5 or 64 I3 attacks both of which Instant Death. Be warned, the Deathstar is fucked if you get Malefica, as all 16 Scyllax will turn.
      • If you want more rad, just take a Lucifex and/or an Irad Cleanser on everything that can take one. (Lets be honest, why wouldn't you want more rad?) The remaining Scyllax can take Flamers or +1 attacks, as well, while the Reductor can take Phosphex.
      • This unit also costs only 960 points minimum.