CHAIN MAIL: Daemonhunter Tricks

"Great site, bro! While I have almost no complaints about BOLS, there is almost no coverage of the Inquisition Codices so needless to say I was elated with joy to find someone who still shares the same enthusiasm as me for these most ancient of codices. So here are a couple comments/questions I have for you after reading your entries:"

Thanks for the email, Colt! I'm pretty much the local champion of the Inquisition in Austin. I love the codices and I expect there will be lots of Witch Hunter and Daemonhunter content here at

To answer your questions and address your comments:

  • "Have you been to ? These guys are nuts about all things GK. There's some really great modellers on there as well as some decent strategies if you do a little digging.

I hadn't seen the site, but it's awesome. I'm beyond my capacity for following blogs and forums, but it's now on my list of sites to look at more closely. Thanks!

  • "In one of your entries you mentioned that 5th ed didn't do much for DH's. I think the added survivability of vehicles did great things for DH's since GK's basically have to be in a LR (4th ed LR's were a risky buy). The lack of AT available to Codex DH has been drastically improved by the added survivability of LR's and change in assault rules (str 6 against rear AV). What advantages do you feel have been lost and gained for DH's and WH's with the advent of 5th ed?"
The new addition shuffled a lot of stuff around so I won't go out on a limb and say that every WH/DH army build is weaker than 4th Edition, but I do feel that to gain the most 5th Edition you have to include Inducted Guard or Allied Space Marines.

Here's a short list of things I miss from 4th Edition (but let me say right off the bat I love 5th Edition and I have no interest in going back to 4E):
  1. Independent Character protection from being close to a friendly unit. This completely changed the way I used my much-loved Canoness + Seraphim unit.
  2. Consolidating into new units after a close combat. I used this a lot, especially with my Assassins and Seraphim.
  3. Close combat blocking line of sight. See #2. 
  4. Target priority. I loved forcing target priority checks with my Culexus (and my Death Cult Assassins) -- although it was a hassle and frustrating when you failed, it added another tactical level to the game.
  5. Killzone changes. Working the killzone (and clever casualty removal) was my bread-and-butter. It was particularly important for my Assassins.
  6. Wound allocation. Allocating wounds in Inquisitorial squads was a lot of fun and a well-built Ordo Hereticus retinue could soak a lot of shots without losing any firepower.
  7. Ubiquitous cover. Just about every model I shoot gets a cover save now, which really took a bite out of the effectiveness of my Exoricists.
  8. Mission changes. Annihilation and Dawn of War (and changes to Reserves - and outflanking) seem to benefit other codices more than Daemonhunters and Witch Hunters. When all of your enemies get a boost, you move down the list.
  9. Deployment changes. Good-bye dear Liber Heresius. I miss you.
  10. Pistol rule change. This is a minor one, but the Vindicare's two-shot Exitus Pistol and the Eversor's Fast Shot were both awesome.
There are more, but you get the idea. 5th Edition changed the way we play and shifted the power structure to emphasize more mobile, mechanized armies (which hurt Daemohunters) and it reduced the cost of the newer, 5th Edition codex armies (which hurt "pure" Witch Hunters).

  • "I've run into some individuals who claim the DH teleport homer no longer works b/c of the wording in the codex. From a friendly game standpoint this is no big issue, but from a competitive standpoint do you think these naysayers have a leg to stand on for this particular arguement?"

Sure, I've heard the argument. The wording of the Daemonhunter teleport homer refers to the old Deep Strike rules (e.g., "if the template used by the teleporting Grey Knights to make a Deep Strike is centered on the model with the homer, then they don't scatter", C:DH p18).

I think if someone pulls that on you in a tournament, you need to take down there name and send it to me. Then I will write an article talking about how similar they are to a device used to introduce water into the human body for hygeinic reasons.

I can see your opponent asking you to deploy your teleporting unit within 2.5" of the homer (the radius of the large blast template) instead of within 6". That would be a fair compromise.

  • "I totally agree with you about the whole "inducted IG or allied SM isn't a pure Inquisitorial army" perspective. It's part of the codex=it's part of the army."
Fantastic! Now we just have to convince the rest of the community, brother!
  • "Lastly, I would like to add that for those individuals who want a competitive DH army consider this. By maxing all of the allied slots in a non Inquisitorial army, you probly end up with more stuff than you'd normally take and can make for some pretty cool combo's. GKT's with IG priests and PAGK's in valk's are just some that come to mind. Have you found any particularly nasty combos for mixing GH or WH with SM or IG?."
Oh yeah, there are some fantastic options for "Using WH/DH as Allies" in the updated Imperial codices -- which is one of the reasons we banned the rule from BOLSCON 2009 (we were too lazy to FAQ them all). Here's a short list of "dirty tricks" I've used with the UWH/DHAA rules:
  1. Using Lord Castellan Creed' s Tactical Genius ability to give Scouts to allied units. I used it to outflank 20 Sisters Repentia (which also gained the benefit my telepathic relay) and I've also used it to get a 12" Scout move with my Canoness + Seraphim. Both are most awesome.
  2. Using Colonel Straken to give allied Seraphim Counter-attack and Furious Charge (this works great for Grey Knights too). 
  3. Deploying 12-man Battle Sisters squads in Chimeras and Valkyries.
  4. Psyker Battle Squads and just about everything.
  5. Vulkan Hestan and max Sisters of Battle allies (you can ally like 18 flamers and meltaguns in those 5 FOC slots).
  6. Books of St Lucius to help with Morale checks and Pinning tests.
  7. Grey Knight Heroes and Inquisitor Lords to get unlimited range Psychic Hoods.
  8. Mystics and Deathstrike Missile Launchers!
The list goes on and on. You can pull off some pretty nasty stuff using those rules -- it's pretty tasty! Thanks again for the email and I'd love to hear your thoughts on the suggestions!

>>Comments are welcome and feel free to email me your lists or questions -- I'm going to endeavor to respond to every email. Just send them to me at And, as always, your mileage may vary.

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