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There have been quite a few "How do I start Necrons?" threads lately, so I decided to post this guide for those looking for tips on what to buy first. This is an expensive hobby, and none of us wants to waste money on stuff we won't end up needing later. Note this isn't a list-building guide or in-depth tactica on units. You can find plenty of these in the Necron Index, or just by posting specific questions on the board. This is more of a "quick start" guide, which is based on the "conventional wisdom" that most Necron players agree upon. I'm also based in the US, so prices are in US dollars.
Are the big sets worth it?
In a word, yes. As you may have already discovered, there are two that are worth mentioning: the battleforce and the warrior phalanx. In general the phalanx is the best value for the money. It is rare to see any large set like this in 40k that doesn't contain at least one unpopular unit that most players don't recommend. The monolith, scads of warriors, a lord, destroyers and scarabs. Unless you're going with some kind of really specific build, your army is bound to eventually have some or all of these in it. That bos will also get you close to 1,500 points, so if you're picking it up, you arguably won't need the rest of this guide. Good luck and have fun!
Now, that's an expensive box to pony up the cash for at once, and if you're like me, that'll take forever to assemble and paint, but fortunately the battleforce is just as useful, albeit on a smaller level. Again, warriors and destroyers are pretty much the norm. Even scarabs, while not nearly as much fun in 5th edition, are still useful, especially to a new player, and the box is much less daunting a new hobbyist's task. All you need to go with it is a lord, which you can get in a blister for a reasonable price, and you're good to go. The battleforce + lord will get you somewhere in the neighborhood of a 750-point force.
That's not a bad start at all, and you may find starting with the battleforce gives you a little more flexibility when you want to expand. As to what to do, well, that kind of depends, but a common addition is more destroyers, or possibly some immortals and flayed ones. Now's a good time to note that immortals, while a VERY useful and common unit, are EXPENSIVE. At $12(!) apiece, you can see why many players don't spam the board with them. If you're not afraid of some converting, you can pick up a box of warriors and use the tried-and-true trick of converting them into immortals and flayed ones. There are many threads on how to do this, and it will give you six of each, and all for $35. For the hobbyist on a budget, this is a "must have."
So let's recap: For the cost of $90 for the battleforce, $35 for the warrior box, and roughly $15 for the lord, that's $140 for a roughly 1,000-point force depending on the lord's wargear. Not too shabby, and that's assuming you DON'T buy from an online dealer that offers discounts or EBay, which can save you even more. A smart and patient shopper with a little luck might be able to get all this for $100 or less. There are few 40k armies out there that offer this kind of a deal.
Onward and upward
Where to go from here? Well again, it depends. Wraiths are nice, and since you can only have three to a squad, and you already have a squad of destroyers, you can only add six. Even that is expensive, though. Another box of warriors is cheaper, and you can convert them into wraiths, but this is a lot more work. If you barely made it through the immortal/flayed one trick, you might want to give this one a pass.
More warriors is NEVER a bad idea. If you're moving into larger games, you really should have at least three squads of 10, and warriors are one of the easiest (financially) upgrades you can get. Next easiest is a C'Tan, which go for $30-$35, and add a HUGE punch to your army. They are also a point sink, so I wouldn't make this my first "upgrade" choice when you pass 1,000 points. Many veteran players won't use them at all, so it's up to you. Again, search the threads for arguments for and against them.
Ditto for the Monolith, which if you didn't buy the phalanx, you have to buy separately at $55. Not a cheap model, and debates also rage about if and at what point level you should squeeze the flying temple of death in. My personal opinion: You should have at least one, especially in larger games. Save up for it if you have to. In the end, there are few players who will tell you it was a waste of money.
That's more than enough to get you to 1,500 points. After that, I trust you'll know enough to make your own decisions. Pariahs are not cheap, in points or cash, so plan ahead with them. Heavy destroyers are fast becoming a "gotta have" unit, but experience will tell you if you need them. Tomb Spyders are a little pricey, but ultimately can be worth it when used right. A few more regular destroyers give you some nice supporting dakka.
And warriors. You always need more warriors.
I wanted to add, don't forget if you buy the box sets try TheWarStore.com or an online vendor that gives you 20% off GW prices always!
Also, the Immortal and Flayed one conversions can save you a TON of cash. I built all my immortals for about $3 a pop using the conversion and some ebay bits
"There is only do, or do not. There is no try." - Yoda
Hey there, I don't want to start a new thread, so I'll ask the question here:I found this very interesting because this is literally the exact list that I plan to use for my new necron army. I went to check for it on the GW website and it wasn't there. Did they cancel it? Also, how many models of each type does it come with? Thanks.Originally Posted by Canew
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Yes GW cancelled the Warrior phalanx box. They also cancelled the double monolith kit they used to sell. PERSONALLY, I think it's in preparation for our codex sometime in 2010 (they do that alot, the Tyranid battleforce couldn't be ordered for a time before they announced the new nid codex)...but my buddy just thinks they took it down either to low demand or something. To find the warrior phalanx now a days you'll need to try ebay, some online vendors MIGHT have it, etc. It was $200 and since many online vendors gave 20% you used to be able to score it for $160 (and get SOOO much bang for your buck!).
And yes, that box kit is a GREAT army list just as is. Add a Ctan to it and you've got a decent list!
"There is only do, or do not. There is no try." - Yoda
I would strongly recommend putting a squad of immortals in a starting army. They are invaluable VS most armies. As far as the Monolith, it depends on what your playing against. If they opposing army has enough Anti armor its not going to do you too much good but against a infantry heavy army it will do wonders.
Well I'm a year late to the party, but the Necron Warrior Phalanx is once again available on the GW website. I just ordered myself one. Thanks for the guide.