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Hi there. Recently I got an idea of putting some of my Tyranid models to use. Over the years I have accumulated 2 massive boxes worth of nid models and bits from trading and etc, and although i never planned on actualy starting an actual army, my recent idea convinced me into a different direction.
If I am going to start a nid force I want to base the force around a hardcore psychic commander, inspired by the Psyckic Hybrid in the Wings of Liberty, Starcraft 2. Problem is Tyranid psykers kinda suck when it comes to actualy doing damage. All those fear and morale tests are nice but I personaly think that you really need a power that actualy kills something and leech essense just doesnt pack the punch. Anyway I am kinda new to the Tyranid block, my main is IG and Tau, secondary is dark eldar and I am currenly considering nids as a tertiary but only if I manage to come up with a solid list with a solid psychic commander - needless to say I have no idea what to use for the commander? Any ideas? Maybe FW has something I could use for a psycher?
Basicaly the entire issue of me starting the force hangs in the balance on whether or not I find an appropriate model to fit my theme because in truth other aspects and themes just dont seems appealing to me.
If you want a hardcore psychic force, then I would recommend you have two commanders. The first and primary one is the Swarmlord, which can conjure 2 psychic attacks per turn and can choose between his repertoire of 4 abilities. His abilities are for destroying the enemy some way or another. He is also an awesome close combat unit, arguable the best in the Tyranid codex. The second HQ should be a Tervigon. He starts off with one, but for just 30 points you can give him two more psychic abilities, and his abilities are used for boosting your Tyranid force.
You have to do converting to get these models. The Tervigon is easy, as you just buy a Carnifex kit and position both sets of scything talons so they touch the ground and looks like extra supports, and have a plain head with no spikes or anything like that, as well as the studded carapace. With the Swarmlord, you need to buy a Hive Tyrant kit, and find 3 more Boneswords, or make your own. You can find plenty of guides and pics in this forum to get an idea of what you want and what you need to do. If you don't want to bother converting, and have too much cash to spend, you could simply buy four Hive Tyrant kits and use all boneswords, use some foot spike to position around the mouth, glue a tail bit to one other tail bit, and cut off some of the spike on one of the Tyrant heads, remove the little spikes, and glue the smaller spike on. You will probably be confused now, but if you look at the picture of the Swarmlord in the Tyranid Codex you will know exactly what I mean.
I hope this helps.
*EDIT* Here's the GW Page with both converted: Leviathan Gargoyle Datasheet; Your Tyranids
Last edited by Warlord Vrrmik; December 18th, 2010 at 09:44.
The problem with the above is neither the tervigon nor the swarmlord actually do DAMAGE which is what the OP wanted. Theyre support psykers only, and that doesnt fit the bill.
Back to the point, unfortunatly there no tyranid unit that really dishes out huge amounts of damage psychically, appart from the Doom of Malanthi, and thats not an HQ choice. Therefore (and depending on your gaming club you may or may not be able to get away with this) i think you need to create your own unit.
However rather than something long winded and complex, i think theres a simple enough solution. If you pay 70 points on a hive tyrant, you gain the Doom of Malanthis "spirt leech" and "catalysm" attack.
Now the only adjustment is that the tyrant cannot regerate wounds like doom can, and cataclysm strikes at S5 and takes off one wound automatically, or S10 and removes 2.
What this means is your tyrant becomes LETHAL to infantry, and will be capable of knocking out just about anything and everything it comes across. And when you done, you can fire off hugly devastating blasts. Whats not to love?
Id say its fairly costed too, this will take a tyrant very close to 300 points, so its going to be a huge target for the enemy.
Sadly your not gonna be able to make a damaging psychic HQ by sticking to the codex :/ I hate to say it but as you point out, all tyranid HQs have support powers, not damage. As i see it, your only going to be able to do what you want by playing with the rules a little.
Your friendly neighbourhood gargantuan creature
That's the thing, I was pointing out the two best psychic commanders in the Tyranid codex, not saying that these were actually that good. They are both for support too.
As for creating your own unit, I believe that you should pay 90 points for Spirit Leech and Cataclysm. The S5 Cataclysm = -1 wound, S10 Cataclysm = -2 wounds system is good, but this means that the Hive Tyrant will be dead in the first 2 turns . That's why I say if you pay 20 points more, you get the full Spirit Leech ability, but generates only wounds, not strength, for the Hive Tyrant (I believe it wouldn't do this anyway, as the only reason this is the case for the Doom of Malan'tai is because of its 'Psychic Strength' special rule).
This would make the Hive Tyrant a very costly unit, and really needs to be protected until it can actually do anything. Unless you equip it with wings, which sends the total to 340 points, it cannot deep strike onto the board, and therefore can't suck peoples' life out straight away. In fact, by the time you are 6" away, you would probably want to get into close combat.
But the only problem is that is a unit you're inventing. I know for a fact that quite a few gaming clubs don't actually accept this, especially in tournaments.
And im kinda aware that a lot of clubs wouldnt buy it, but the guys hands are kinda tied. Theres simply no way to create a psychically damaging HQ with the codex. Granted you can get good psychers generally, but not ones that do damage. Unfortunatly support isnt what he wants, if he did we'd be laughing.
Your friendly neighbourhood gargantuan creature
I suppose I'll have to agree with you HeiroduleAgreed.Unfortunatly support isnt what he wants, if he did we'd be laughing.
Also, don't forget the second and final psyker the Tyranids have that is decent with blowing people and things up is the Zoanthrope, the lesser version of the Doom of Malan'tai.
Tyranids aren't the massive blow-up-people kind of psychic race. Most of their powers are to support the oncoming swarm.
I suppose if he wants a psychic army he could have the Swarmlord and Tervigon for HQ and then have 2 broods of 3 Zoanthropes and 1 Doom of Malan'tai as his elites, then if he wants to take it to the next level he could have 3 Tervigons and 3 massive broods of Termagants as his Troops choices. But in my opinion, that is a really boring force , and may not win too many games.
Actually thats a good point about the thropes... as an idea, if you club is willing to let you do it, consider using warp blast from the 4th edition codex maybe? Gives you a few options to blow stuff up.
And yeah, agreed to the rest of the post
Your friendly neighbourhood gargantuan creature
Hm, I don't really have any good info to give, but this thread gave me an idea. Combine the use of 6 units on Genestealers with the Broodlord using his Aura of Despair and the Hive Tyrant psychic powers that force LD checks (Psychic Scream and The Horror). Could have been fun if it weren't for the order the powers need to be used... The Broodlords ability goes after the Hive Tyrants, thus ruining my awesome combo. The whole psychic shooting attack thing going on with just about every psychic power is really getting to me.
If you just want something that fits your theme you could just make a counts-as type model. Say you want to take a Hive Tyrant with two sets of Brainleech Devourers, but since he isn't a psycher he doesn't fit your bill. So, instead of giving him two arms with devourers you give him a bigger head and model the arms to go up into the head (Think of stereotypical psychers in bad movies that put their fingers on their temporal lobes to focus their power). And then just say it's him blowing up the heads of whatever it is you are shooting at, but resolved with the normal shooting rules for the Devourers.
Sorry, WraithGuardian, but "offensive psyker powers" is not part of the Tyranid arsenal. Other than zoanthropes and the Doom of Malan'tai -- both of them Elites choices -- there are no offensively damaging psyker powers available. (I agree that "leech essence" doesn't count.) Tyranid psyker powers are all about strengthening the swarm or weakening the enemy. Direct damage via mind powers is not the way the 'nids work. Direct damage via devourers, cannons, claws and teeth IS the way the 'nids work.
ninjabackhand: point and click, again, really? even after i give you an military term "shock tactic" you still call it point and click.
RIP Warhammer 40,000: 21 Sep 1998 - 24 May 2014
Personally I love the nid psi powers. I've used them to great affect to tear enemies apart. (Unless they are cowering in a metal box, which magically protects them...) Nid psi powers aren't usually direct-damage. But that in no way means nid psi powers are weak. Nothing like turning that unit of elite space marines into WS/BS1 weaklings!