We will rise again …. Evolution of the Necrons: Blog 2: “Storm of the Lord” by Matt Kirk

29 Nov


Since my first blog and my first rag tag list I have managed to get a fair few games under my belt with everybody’s favourite robots of doom. Straightaway it seemed to me like the HQ choice/s in any army was going to be critical. In the current list I am running I am taking the Stormlord with a barge and Varguard Mephistoron – who then steals said barge.

I wanted to go through my thought process a little bit in choosing the Storm-Lord, but first I just have to share my horrid glee at the rules for the Varguard. Aside from the command barge+warscythe combination of doom, the barge gives him a lovely platford from which to launch his bullying attacks. Against a squad of tactical marines when playing him yesterday he managed to soak up all the attacks with his T5, 2+ save and then since they missed with 6 dice his special rule gives him +6 attacks, giving him 9 attacks back at WS6, S7 with no saves allowed. The barge means you pick a squad you want to kill … horrible rules mean they will mostly die.  I realised afterwards that it should have been 10 attacks as well as I hadn’t added the +1 attack for charging … I think I was too busylaughing evilly. He is definitely going to be the little-Mephiston of my army who seems to do his job very well, especially if you throw in a turbo-boost and A13 to help him get to where you want him.

Anyway onto my other HQ pick the (probably unsurpising) Storm Lord.

Here was my reasoning:

For:  The Stormlord looks cool and is one of 2 HQ choices with a cool model. He costs the most points so he must be epic.

Against: He doesn’t have a power weapon so will he kill anything and be worth the points.

For:  He can shoot lightning bolts out of his arse.

Against:  You have to roll for all of that, it is mainly effective against vehicles with it’s poor AP and what are the chances of rolling the right “6” at the right time. Essentially its just frills … frills that are sometimes going to be amazing (when you get the game where in the first turn three dreadnaughts go down to lightning bolts) and sometimes going to be rubbish (I played with him yesterday and got one roll of 6 in five turns of night-fight which bounced of a marine’s power armour).

For: He gives you a chance to steal the initiative.

Against: How many times will I want to steal the initiative when you can’t see me the first turn anyway and I won’t be in range of you to shoot until turn two.

For: He has a nasty staff of destruction that does a S6, AP1 “kill-in-a-line” attack.

Against: It’s a one time deal … and he has to be right next to the unit you want to kill, and how is he the going to kill the rest in combat.

For: Nightfight …. yes it could only last a turn, but it could last five and against some gun-line armies that could be game-changing. I think one of the main dangers of the short range shooty army is a long range shooty army – this helps negate that.

Against: If you only get one turn it isn’t worth it and if you only want him for this ability then 2 crypteks are cheaper with their solar bazingas.

For: 2+. 3++ T5 model with a phylactery so pretty tough to take down and if you do he might be coming back fully charged.

For/Against: Bloodswarm whatevers: I couldn’t see myself taking flayed ones for a while (a combination of the fact that I don’t see how they are going to be effective at the moment and the fact that they are pretty expensive right now)


I think the thing that swung it to put his royal Storminess into my list was the ability to take a royal court of his choosing that might lend him a bit of support. Last week I had purchased a couple of crypteks and I already had a lord on foot with a resurrection orb, so I decided that the model count for the court would be a convenient three and I would use them to give Stormy a slightly beefed up close combat presence, a way to get him where I wanted to use his nasty staff of horribleness and finally a way to twin-link all of his abilities. Therefore I went for one Lord with a warscythe, rez orb and mindshackle scarabs, one cryptek of despair with veil of darkness and finally one cryptek with the chronometron (and the staff of failness) .

In the three games I have played with them this unit has done its job in each. The cryptek is really the man here and gives his rerolls to the Stormlord in the first phase if he fails his night-fight roll giving him a pretty good chance of getting nightfight until turn 3 or 4.

“Please come closer if you want to shoot me … I promise I won’t hurt you.”

I wait with this unit until a turn where night-fighting comes off automatically (without using the reroll) before I deepstrike with the veil or darkness… essentially using the chronometron reroll to give me a much greater chance of ending up where I want to be in order to be ready for the staff “line of doom” attack. If I can get next to the unit I have my S6 AP1 line that goes 2D6″ (with my reroll again for distance if I need it – as I can use it in every phase) plus my template weapon (staff of despair – S8 goes vs LD instead of toughness) which will kill most marines on 4s.

This unit is not too shabby in assault either for lots of fun little reasons .

– Rez orb and ever living means that everything has a chance to come back on a 4+.

– Mindshackle Scarabs (fail a leadership test on 3D6 and attack your own unit D3 times) take attacks away from me and redirect them to my opponent – evening up many fights.

– Chronometron still gives its reroll to the unit … that crucial invulnerable or Reanimation roll for the Stormlord, or reroll a failed hit from the warscythe … it is all good.

This unit does suffer from a lack of invulnerable saves excepting the Stormlord himself but if the unit is targeted in assault the Stormlord still gets to attack and the others have a chance on a 4+ to rejoin the battle from their protocols. The unit isn’t going to bash through things but it does soak up a lot of attacks. Not a bad unit to tie things up and it can actually do some decent damage on a good day if it rolls well for its mindshackle scarabs and warscythe.

It was important to me that the Stormlord had an effective role over and above creating his night-fight  in order for him to give my list the most bang for it’s robotic buck. After using him this week…. so far he has definitely been worth it! With different combinations of the royal court he can be a pretty nasty addition to a list with regards to his shooting attack and close combat resilience. His ability for night fighting combined with the cryptek rerolls make him the fate-weaver of the night and this puts a lot of armies in a situation where they need to come closer. That means that they are more likely to be in range of the assorted armaments and claws of the rest of my sentient metal nasty-nasties which will be ready to accept their fealty or crush the enemy into the ground beneath their rusty metal boots.

We’ll be back ….


8 Responses to “We will rise again …. Evolution of the Necrons: Blog 2: “Storm of the Lord” by Matt Kirk”

  1. Sl40 November 29, 2011 at 23:36 #

    Good article Matt, you have become the source of information on this site for Necrons. I think either we look at it one of the major competitive builds is going to be the Stormlord, however there may well be better more optimized options which will come out later.

    • Matt Kirk November 29, 2011 at 23:54 #

      Thanks a lot. I am sure you are right about more optimised builds as well … esepcially since I am pretty much using battlescribe to throw around new combinations each day at the moment. It’s like a big skeletal theme park where I don’t know what fun new rules ride to try first. I will be trying to give stormy a fair go for the moment though, despite his failings, and although I keep getting excited about new combinations I am trying to steady my hand and evolve my list rather than rewrite it every time I have an idea.

      It’s a tough call for someone as easilly distracted as me. The next thing I am adding is a ghost ark and a few more lords to that royal court … gonna see if I can use my army to assault.

      Bring on mindshackle goodness … will let you know how that works out. 🙂

      • KirstySharpe November 30, 2011 at 01:04 #

        I play a Tyranid army and for the first time in a long while I felt a lot more comfortable when my friend took the Stormlord instead of a normal lord. He had loads of points tied up that were sort of wasted. Though everyone else in our area who play against the Storm Lord and son’t have Tyranids are totally scared of him.

  2. HowardRim November 30, 2011 at 01:16 #

    Great Pictures too!

  3. Arnold_PJ November 30, 2011 at 10:22 #

    We can’t decide on him in my area either and I think your for and against argument sums it up. Maybe there are better options

  4. BadBoy November 30, 2011 at 14:43 #

    The Traveler is the future…period.

    • Matt Kirk November 30, 2011 at 16:41 #

      I couldn’t agree more that the traveller is going to be in many lists … I hope for the sake of the dex he isn’t in every build though since the thought of only seeing one HQ choice for another ten years while we wait for an 8th edition codex to come out fills me with dread. I hope there may be a nice variety of builds with this dex and will be disappointed if it turns out there isn’t. I like him on paper but he is one of the ones I haven’t played a lot with yet and the only time I did was against a mainly infantry based army so he didn’t really get to shine. I do wish that he had the 2+ save though or an orb or something. I can also see starting him off in my royal court with the Harbinger of Eternity so he gets a reroll on his Tachyon Arrow before blasting him forward. It also occured to me that he would be a fun thing to combine with Nemesor Whats-his-face so that he could turbo-then-stealth every turn to get his 3+ cover save. Imagine him in one barge, Obyron in another and nemesor stealthing one or the other every turn … sounds like a lot of fun to me. 🙂

      • 40KUK December 2, 2011 at 12:26 #

        I’m not sure The Traveler is the future, or the sole future. Instead he is one of them. Matt is on the money in that the there a whole load of build for us to get excited about.

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