There Will Be No Apologies for My Reign of Terror

So the lion’s out of the bag, and we know what the Dark Angels book is: absurdly, staggeringly, over-the-top bonkers. We can’t claim to be completely surprised by this – a lot of the best things from the book showed up in the index PDF we saw months ago, and much of the rest of it was previewed on Warhammer Community last week – but still: yowza.

Someone on our Patreon Discord recently asked me what I was going to do, now that the Dark Angels have leapfrogged from being slightly below average to quite possibly the most ridiculously pushed Space Marines since Iron Hands. My answer was: I’m going to keep playing Dark Angels, and I’m probably going to win more games, and you can all go to hell about it.

(The other possibility here, that we should consider, is that the problem wasn’t actually the book in the first place, I just can’t be fixed, and I’m gonna go winless for another two years, but I’d rather not consider the implications of that line of reasoning, so I am preemptively deciding that no, it’s definitely not that)

This isn’t a new development, the most recent codex/supplement quite coincidentally I am certain being the most powerful at the time of release, but it’s for sure novel seeing it applied to the Dark Angels. I’ve been waiting for this moment since I got into the hobby in 4th edition, for it to be my turn to have the busted-ass cheater army. I expect that some people – the haters yes, but also the losers – are going to have a go at me for this, and point out that I am only winning because I’m riding a strong codex, and I’m not actually very good at Warhammer. To this, I can only say: Yes, obviously.

That is actually exactly what I’m doing. That is how the game works. You get a good codex, and you use it to build stronger armies. Is that somehow controversial? Would you rather not have The Good Shit? I don’t believe for a second that anyone would answer yes to that one. I’m not going to apologize for having a massively over-tuned codex that puts the game on easy mode, because I am not sorry. It absolutely rules. It kicks so much ass that the Dark Angels Supplement is good now! I am exultant.

Credit: Robert “TheChirurgeon” Jones

Again, this has happened before, and the next verse is the same: I’ll crash back to earth, and it’ll be someone else’s party next time. I still feel kind of bad for Goonhammer’s own John Condit, the only person on this Earth that got into Iron Hands entirely for fluff reasons, before anyone knew how good they were going to be. The dude was so shook by that supplement Going Off that he quit Warhammer and has been playing Titanicus ever since. And we all know at least one A Tau Person who’s still eating shit over Seigler’s Triptide list that they maybe never even played themselves – this is, to be clear, Fucked Up, and everyone should stop ragging on them over it this instant – even though the army is atrocious now.

In my professional and absolutely unbiased opinion, if your codex sucked before, just standing in the paint and taking charges because it can’t get up to block anything, and now it is completely batshit and throws down backboard-shattering between-the-leg slams, you get to be a little annoying. Hell, change codexes if you want, even. I think I pissed Liam off because I said he should run his marines as Crimson Angels, but I was serious: this supplement rocks, he should use it. You should use it too! Get yourself a space marine army and paint it green, you will not regret it. They call it a bandwagon for a reason, and it’s because all the cool kids are on there, rocking out with guitars and theremins and all the weird instruments with too many strings. Do you want to be left out, or do you want to come on over to the Unforgiven Friend Zone (note: not that type of friend zone), a judgement-free simulated joy-like experience.

Look at this shit, just check this out and tell me you don’t want to start playing Dark Angels right now. Within this book, this absurd, perfect, book, there is a legal Vanguard detachment of:

  • Azrael
  • Bladeguard Ancient (Pennant of Remembrance)
  • Deathwing Apothecary (Chief Apothecary, Selfless Healer)
  • 5 Deathwing Terminators with TH/SS

Dark Angels Blade Guard Veterans and Ancient
Dark Angels Blade Guard Veterans and Ancient. Credit: Greg Chiasson

Which results in 15 Objective Secured wounds, with a 1+/4++/6+++ save, that can never be wounded on a roll of 1-3, and reduce all incoming damage by 1. If the opponent can’t kill them all in a single turn, one damaged model can be restored to full wounds, and another dead one can get back up. This isn’t particularly cheap – it’s around 500 points and some amount of CP (it varies – the 1st Company rule refunds the 3CP for the detachment, but Azrael only adds 2 more if he’s your warlord. If he is, you have to spend 1 more to give the extra WLT to the Apothecary, and – unless this is your only relic – another on the relic standard for the ancient), but I stood up and did the italian-chef-kissing-fingers thing when I saw this, and I am now, while you are reading this, probably still doing so.

Is that not the absolute raddest thing? Can you understand why I’m losing my whole entire mind here?  Parking something like this on an objective with the Terminators shielding the characters is going to get you very-deservingly punched in the face, and I need you to understand that this, to me, is extremely cool.

The Dark Angels supplement isn’t even out yet. We’ve only just started seeing what kind of janky bullshit is in here, and I – an incredible idiot – am already reeling from the heady whiff of power emanating from it. This is pearls before swine to me, can you imagine what good players must be going through, ones that know what they’re looking at? It’s buck wild how good this book is, and I am absolutely not going to be classy about that fact, and neither should anyone else. We waited a long time for this.

Hell yeah.