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Beginner Grey Knight 500 point Army List: The Lightning Hammer

Ironically does not use hammers.

We had our first session for the Warhammer club at school two days ago, and preparations have begun in earnest for the School League tournament. I have some Student Initiates now, older players from last academic year who have significantly upped their game and model count.

They've even painted them!

I've been feverishly build crafting for them, trying to sort out some outrageously cheesy lists to fit inside a 650 point School League limit, and I'm getting quite a bit of success. They often turn into one trick ponies, but the one trick usually has flexible enough application so they don't meet a hard counter.

One of our newest neophytes is getting into the hobby for the first time, and has chosen to go with Grey Knights. He really likes the idea of paladins in space, but what really caught his eye was this:

Image taken from the Games Workshop webstore
It's not hard to see why... despite the flak it gets for looking like a Space Marine sized baby carrier, it's hard to ignore some of the cool elements to it. Big stompy robots are one of the quickest ways to a teenaged boys heart, and if you attack a gigantic sword you create a vortex of adolescent testosterone from which no neck beardling can escape!

The new Grey Knight codex gives us a way to make this the literal star of the show, and also makes starting off an army incredibly easy.

Grey Knight Beginner List: The Lightning Hammer


Grand Master in Nemesis Dreadknight

Wargear: Nemesis Greatsword, Heavy Psycannon
Psychic Powers: Smite, Gate of Infinity
[255 points]


Terminator Squad

Wargear: 4x Stormbolters and Nemesis Force Weapons, 1x Incinerator and Nemesis Force Weapon
Psychic Powers: Smite
[258 points]

Fast Attack

Interceptor Squad

Wargear: 4x Stormbolters and Nemesis Force Weapons, 1x Incinerator
Psychic Powers: Smite
[137 points]

Total: 650 Points

You can probably see where this is going. For the 500 point version, drop the Interceptor squad and special weapon on the Terminators. You get a working army in 6 models!

This relatively small army actually has quite a bit of survivability. The weakest part is clearly the Interceptors, with the Terminators and Grand Master presenting some great big distraction damage sponges. It'll work quite well for the neophyte to learn how to use his units, without them getting tabled too quickly.

That's not the trick though. This is all about high alpha strike cheese.

Deployment starts with the Grand Master and Interceptors hiding behind a rock, and the Terminators in teleportation reserve. If you get first turn, proceed to the next paragraph. If not, hope you survive any other alpha strikes the enemy has prepared for the first turn, and then counter attack with some terrifying close combat ability.

If you do get first turn, you can get the whole of your army into the enemy deployment zone and at your swords reach in no time! The Grand Master uses Gate of the Infinity and pops up where he needs to go. The Interceptors use their Personal Teleporters ability to do the same trick.

With the Terminators teleporting on the enemy door step in either case, you have a real hammer of an army zipping across the battlefield like a lightning bolt!

The Terminators are there to really ruin the enemy battle line. At two wounds a piece and 2+ armour save, the enemy will need to put a lot of firepower on them. If they don't, the well known Grey Knight close combat ability will mulch whatever back field units they have. The Incinerator is there to discourage enemy counter charges, but feel free to swap it out for other weapons.

The Interceptors can help with the alpha strike, but their role is to go and grab objectives. They have high mobility, and ignore terrain and models, meaning they can bypass bubble wrap units to slaughter objective campers. Again, the Incinerator helps with this, and gives them a little protection if they get charged themselves.

The Grand Master is the star of the army, targeting the biggest, nastiest things and cleaving them with his massive sword! He is the most effective heavy weapons platform thanks to his BS 2+, meaning moving and shooting is not the problem it is for other units. Once the big things are gone, he can then Gate to anything else that needs killing... imagine ninja shadow stepping but with a giant shining robot knight!

I've purposefully left the force weapon selection blank. That's room-for-cool, so the neophyte can pick what weapons he like the look of. Honestly, the choice is somewhat subjective anyway, with halberds coming our a little on top compared to swords. Warding staves might be a good idea if you're worried about survivability.

So, what do you think? Too small, too specialised? Not using the best the codex has to offer? Let me know in the comments below, and help this neophyte win some games of 40K!

Until next time.

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  1. I like it, I have played Grey Knights before, and this looks like an interesting first stab at a list, and gives me some terrifying ideas for 2,000 points in a Battalion detachment (I could see the 500 point force x 3, and then 500 points of other stuff being amusing to play!)

    1. Thanks for commenting! Since we can't spam Gate you might want to think about what unit you're sending each turn. Nothing stops you from taking loads of Terminator/Interceptor pairs though! The interceptors start on the field to satisfy the 50% on battlefield requirement, and the Terminators all start in reserve.

      Since the Interceptors can bring a pair of special weapons, they can certainly fulfil the role of cover-camping-fire-support. Then when the time is right, just zip over and claim an objective.

      That really is terrifying, as you have an army that can literally be anywhere it wants by the first turn... and is decent enough at shooting and close combat to do good work whilst it's there.


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