Thursday, 22 July 2010

Redesigned 'Nids in 1000 words - Bargain!

Bored of MEQ?
Struggling to pick between DC or SG Blood Angels armies as a summer project?

Well, why not finish off that army you started back in January 2010! A whole 7+ months ago!!

My original reserves army Nids seen here, was hit by a solid swing of the nerf bat when the FAQ came out – the lack of stacking reserves hit my dual tyrant list and with two of the most iconic space marine chapters being released in quick succession, my Nids took a back seat.

My semi-Nidzilla army will not fly now, I know from experience with my BA and SW that Nidzilla can’t handle certain firepower levels and cannot get into CC quick enough.

So a re-design is called for. I have a solid number of Nids painted, and a good number ready to roll when/if they get the call. I do need to buy Hive Guard as I figure they will most certainly be in the new list…

I think this may do:

Tyranid Prime; lashwhip/bs, deathspitter
Termagants x10
Tervigon – Catalyst
Hive Guard x2
Hive Guard x2
Hive Guard x2
Trygon – AG
Trygon – AG
TFex – Rupture Cannon

How to use?
Prime attaches to a HG unit – acting not only as extra ‘pretend’ T6, but also as a CC counter measure.

Trygons start on the table, on providing cover for the second, the first hopefully in cover itself.

TFex sets up fire position next to Tervigon.

Existing termies either in reserve or in cover. These serve as bubblewrap really so I guess on table.

First turn HG get into firing positions, TFex suppresses something hopefully, Trygons leg it (or worm it I guess) into position and Tervie pops out some little ones.

Turn 2, HG let rip at transports and TFex continues to suppress, Tervie poops out more Termies (if poss) Trygons get into CC and distract until all other elements in the opposing army are dead.

I still have 150 points to spend though. Hmmm…

3 extra Hive Guard, 1 for each squad would ensure closing down 3 transports per turn. At 1500, sometimes this is enough! Crazy fools and their 3 rhino armies…

Do I need 3x3? Or is 2x3 enough to reliably take out transports? What does the math say?
With 2x3….each has 2 shots hitting 0.66% of the time so..
4 (per unit) shots * 0.66 = 2.64
2.64 * 0.5 (pene vs AV11) = 1.32, of which 4 results are useful…= 0.87 every squad of HG… with 3 in each squad this moves up to….1.3 ‘useful’…

So to push up the numbers to a statistically guaranteed shut down of 3 transports per turn I need 3x3…

NOTE: Useful is characterised as a 2, 4, 5 or 6 as far as transports are concerned. It is an important side note that for APC’s such as the Razorback it could be that a 1 or 3 is considered more important than others. But for this analysis, these are the conditions in use.


- 5 x Raveners? Bare bones and following in the shadow of the Trygons for cover? They provide a third distraction element and if any survive will be a mean mo fo in CC. Perhaps being able to assault the contents of any disembarked transports courtesy of the HG.
- 5 x Warriors? Again, bare bones, but as a more robust and dangerous Troops choice than the Termagants. Good survivability in cover, good damage output vs other troops in ranged and CC. But the limitation is that they are another army element that stays back ‘home’ with the HG, Tervie and TFex.. not supporting the Trygons.
- Drop the TFex. Forget AV13+ from range. Replace with a 3rd Trygon. This provides great support for the other two Trygons, has the same ability to damage high armour value vehicles (S7 on charge, 2D6 Arm.Pen due to MC status) This saves points and achieves the purpose of the support for the forward elements of the army…did I mention this saves points? 55 of them! And allows me to grab one of the other units above…

So, how about grabbing the 3rd Hive Guard?

We now have:

Tyranid Prime – Lw/Bs, Deathspitter 100

3x 3 HG @ 150 each
3x Trygons w. Adrenal Glands @ 210 each
Tervigon w Catalyst 175
2 x 10 Termagants @ 50 each

Leaves me with 45 ish points out of 1500…

Thoughts? Drop the Prime, drop a single HG and get an HQ Tervigon for double FNP on the Trygons for a turn? Shake off that missile spam that we all love so much nowadays…?
After the Trygons are out of FNP range (so turn 2 onwards) the FNP can be given to 2 separate units of HGuard for additional survivability in cover.

The second benefit of the dual Tervigon list is that I can produce a greater number of Termagants – useful in 2/3 missions and sometimes in Annihilation too as I can produce speedbumps and extra bubblewrapping. This also means I do not need to pay for a second unit of Termagants as I will have minimum 4 (1 of which is a MC) troop units on the table, reliably up to 5…potentially – ugh, dirty amounts of termagants to paint…

Third benefit of dual tervigons is the widespread net of:
- Counter attack
- Toxin sacs
- Adrenal Glands
- Synapse
Now we have bubblewrapping and objective holding troops in untold numbers that can also fight back! Bubblewrap that fights back and doesn’t just die slowly! Whoot!

Ah, I hear you, clearly I need to pay for 2 of these things… so our final Nid list at 1500 looks like this:

Tervigon (HQ) Catalyst, AG, TS, Onslaught
Tervigon (Troop) Catalyst, AG, TS, Onslaught
Hive Guard x2
Hive Guard x3
Hive Guard x3
Trygon AG
Trygon AG
Tyrgon AG

30 points left… Onslaught on both Tervie’s. Done.

Seems fun…Need to buy?
- 1 Trygon as I sold one to AJ when I thought I wouldn’t play Nids again
- 7 Hive Guard…pain. Proxy some warriors for now…
- 1 Carnifex to convert to Tervigon
- Over time…an arse load of Termagants (although I have around 50 little bugs now)

What do we think? Have I just stolen ½ hour of your life that you’ll never get back?



  1. Grrr.... beaten to 1st by Chumby! Again!

    Anyway... <3... who doesn't love BROWN???

    Chumby is the better man to listen to when it comes to nids but I'll still waffle for a lit bit about the list.

    From your comments, I assume the trygons will start off the board. If not, and you plan to reserve them, you have no reserve manipulation, so they'll struggle.

    The only firepower you have is the HG (but you do have a metric ton of it) and they will struggle to give enough suppression as 1) they only have a 24" range (even with onslaught you'll struggle with keeping them in cover AND getting in first turn shooting, and 2) you can only shoot at 3 targets.

    Relying on the Tervigons to endlessly spawn 'gants is a risky game - ask Chumby. They can easily run out very early on and therefore don't give you the wrap (for protection) or the troops (for objectives) you need. 2 units base will give you a minimum of 4 and will only cost an extra 50 points.

    You only have 2 Synapses (Tervigons). Although your CC units have RAGE and will head at the enemy, it'd be nice to be sure they head at the enemy you want them to go after, not the one they wants to head after. Your opponent will know this (if he's clever) and you run the risk of being baited around.

    I'd drop a trygon and make the HG 3x2. That gives you about 280 points. Enough for a Tyrant with HC, HVC and a guard. Same number of T6 wounds, more (only a little I know) ranged firepower and also the option of outflanking the Rant with reserve manipulation on the Trygons? Finding the points for a second unit of gants will be harder though.

    p.s. - you forgot to add the 'useful' results for glancing hits to your calculation....which would take it closer to 1. :P

  2. Agree with BroLo I'm afraid. @ 1500 that's a lot of "sure hope these Trygons screw things up." They sure can but they won't reliably without reserve manipulation. At that points level keeping them on the table might be a better idea as it forces your opponent to shooting at the huge gribblies or your HG.

    Nids are hard to work @ 1500 because of the expense of their MCs but it's doable! Goodluck. I'll be sick of Nids by the end of this weekend having spent 1.5 weeks (well 2 but was sick) painting a 1750 force =/.

  3. ah, no I keep the Trygons on the table! FNP two of them for first turn and get as far up the field as possible... Seeking cover wherever possible, run them probably in a rotating triangle for cover...

    No there is no reserve manipulation. But I am not reserving stuff...

    Interesting option on the third Trygon...would reduce the need to buy as many Hive Guard and that 3rd Trygon itself...already have a Tyrant in plastic so thats all good...

    I'll pass proper comment later in the day when I have time....

    Thanks guys! Keep it coming!

  4. Well, as you seem interested:

    Hive Tyrant: Hive Commander, Twin-Linked Devourer - 210
    Tyrant Guard - Lash-Whip/Bonesword - 80

    Hive Guard (2) - 100
    Hive Guard (2) - 100
    Hive Guard (2) - 100

    Termagant (10) - 50
    Termagant (10) - 50
    Tervigon - Catalyst, Adrenal Glands, Toxin Sacs - 195
    Tervigon - Catalyst, Adrenal Glands, Toxin Sacs - 195

    Trygon - Adrenal Glands - 210
    Trygon - Adrenal Glands - 210


    Same number of T6 Wounds, more options with deployment/reserves (hell, reserve it all against shooty lists), little less shootiness, but I think more unpredictable. If both Trygons and the Commander turn up on the same turn... Emprah help your opponent! A central castling from your opponent is predictable but if you know that, you can counter it.

  5. I lied - 4 less T6 wounds (reduced number of HG), but you get another 10 gants and 6 more T6 wounds holding objectives.