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How To Squish The Bugs

Submitted By: Date: November 7, 2006, 07:48:06 PM Views: 3079
Summary: BUGS!!!!!!!!! It would seem that you are facing the most alien race that there is: Tyranids. Having trouble beating off the Tyranid Hordes? Not a problem. Tyranids is the most unique army because you can customize the entire army, therefore making it hard to guess what you will face. Nevertheless there are certain things that all Dark Eldar players should know before facing the bugs.

I also just want to say that I copied the Layout from Hao (Just Chillin') so yeah. And please for any posting look at the critque thread.


This IMO is what should be targeted first.

- Warriors and Zoanthropes or any real Synapse

- Raveners and Genestealers

- Then the Hive Tyrant and the Hormagaunts

- By now the Carnifex is close so kill it

- Now whatever the game calls for

First of all there is the HQ of the Tyranids:


Ever seen Alien? This is that model. Big, Ugly and full of nasty stuff. This model can tear stuff up in combat, shoot a hole in a tank and make sure that his army doesn’t run off the table. Despite all this awesomeness there are ways to deal with a Hive Tyrant. Firstly you could shoot it plain and simple. Pepper it with Dark Lances and Disintegrators and watch the wounds drop. The best a Tyrant can do is 2+ Armour and 6+ Invulnerable. Any AP2 weapons are your friends. Don’t do the dumb thing and charge in units as meat shields. The Tyrant will go “whoops I killed 3, you did no wounds and then I run you down.” Instead Wyches can do the job. Think of it as Succubus delivery. The Wyches won’t do squat but the Succubus will take out 1-2 wounds per round (give or take, with an Agonizer) and the Tyrant will struggle to get through 4+ Invulnerable Saves.


Okay meet the bowling ball bugs. These guys have one real purpose, which is to die a horribly painful death. But that takes a while…so just wait. If a Tyrant has a Guard then he isn’t winged, which is always a good thing. Therefore he will only be moving 6” a turn. If you start 24” away that means he is next to you by turn 4. That means a lot of Dark Lances in his face before he gets there. One warning. Don’t get these guys into combat. With high I and lots of A it is just brutal.


Okay meet Uber-Genestealer. This guy eats everything and more. He can infiltrate with a unit of up to 11 Genestealers, which means a whole bunch of nastiness on your side. However there is hope. He can’t fleet and therefore his Genestealers cannot. This allows to open up on him with everything from Disintegrators to Splinter Cannons. Nothing else really needed.


These guys are probably the worst out of all the HQ. It’s the fact that 1 squad can contain up to 9 of the buggers all with Synapse. These can be Shooty, Combat or Uber-Fast. If Shooty with things like Venom Cannons then out flank them and assault them. If Combat then charge them anyway, the best save they can get is 4+ and they are basically Marines but with claws  If Uber-Fast then take them out reeallly quickly or they will bug you all game. Not really helpful I know but these are some the most variable bugs so it is hard to write tactics vs. them.

Now come the ELITE part of the army:


Now it comes to the Tyranid version of Mandrakes. Yet cooler. It is a single model that appears out of terrain, helps reserves appear and if charges with a unit of Hormagaunts then every Hormagaunt within 2” hits on 3’s. Very ouch. Another problem is that in a forest they get a 3+ Cover Save. You can solve this easily though by either shooting it to death because the best save it has (not in cover) is 5+. If you are confident then charge it but realize that it has 4 Attacks on the charge and Strength 6. Something that I got from IronViper is that you can deny a piece of terrain to a Lictor by occupying it with a Sniper Squad. Just cover the majority of the terrain and the enemy won't take the chance of destroying his own Lictor.

And now the masses of fun that are the TROOPS:


YAY! Genestealers! Not really. These are the biggest pain in the a**. They are the best combat unit that the bugs have to offer and when charging are very devastating. Think of it this way, a unit of 8 charges into your Warriors. With Scything Talons they get 32 Attacks, hitting 21.33 times, with 5.33 Rending, then 10.67 wounds and a total of 8.89 kills. That is basically no attacks back. So if you were to ever to shoot something with anything shoot these guys with Splinter Cannons and Rifles and generally kill them before they get to your army. Don’t and I must impose this largely, don’t get into combat with them. It will hurt. A lot.


This is what really gave Tyranids the nickname of bugs. For 100 pts you get 20 Gaunts with Twin-Linked Splinter Rifles that are Assault. Also remember the mission Meat Grinder? These guys have the option of taking that special rule so no matter how many you kill they just keep on coming back. Don’t let that stop you from killing them. You get the VP for each time you kill the unit and when they come back on from the board edge they are normally outside Synapse. Don’t let them close and you should do fine. Remember this with all Tyranids. You don’t want any Tyranids near your units.


Hmmm……Gaunts with Scything Talons. Realize that these are combat things that charge 12”, fleet and get 3 Attacks on the charge. However realize that Hormagaunts, though have a daunting amount of attacks are only DE Warriors (with I4) for attacking. So with a unit of Wyches or even some Warriors and they will fall quickly with their 6+ Save. Just make sure that they are not within Synapse range unless you want to be swamped by a horde of sharp things.


Small annoying bugs that need to be stepped on. If they have Leaping then they are a problem but if not then don’t particularly worry too much but as not to sound like a broken record don’t let them near your lines. I once played a battle in, which my opponent had 3 units of 3 Winged Rippers that were in combat by Turn 2 with my 20 man unit of Warriors, of which they killed 4, I lost combat and they ran them down. 60 pts of Rippers took down 190 pts of Warriors. As in the Priority part always assess the situation before taking your turn. Also check if they have Leaping and if they do you will want to kill them quicker. Also remember that you can easily instant-kill them with Dark Lances and Disintegrators.

The FAST ATTACK are now up:


These are purely just Gaunts with Wings and a Strength 4, re-roll to wound gun. I personally have played against them and they did all of nothing. However fear them with the Bio-Plasma in combat. Especially in large squads that s a lot of I8 attacks. Simply put, don't throw Wyches into the mix with these boys. Still they are just Hormagaunts with Wings and double the points, don’t really be worried too much. People don't normally use Gargoyles so don't worry.


OMG fast stuff! Raveners, when equipped properly they deal out (in units of 6) 30 Rending Attacks. Much death to us. They all count as Beast so they are as fast as us. I know it is scary however Raveners don’t have the staying power (like most of the Tyranids). If they are out of Synapse (like most of the time) then they can be instant-killed so if you are out of range for big things then these are good targets. However they are a large threat and need to be dealt with in their time. They also can Deep Strike and shoot a gun at your Raiders so don’t underestimate these models.

The HEAVY SUPPORT of Tyranids is next:


Floating Heads of Doom. Not really. Still they are Terminators in terms of resistance and have a psychic Rail-gun coming out of their head. They can also have Synapse so in short are very bad. A Dark Lance to the face is a good way to get rid of them. They aren’t Independent Characters so you can always target them. Perhaps some Deep Striking Scourges? Or of in serous doubt assault it, it only has WS 3. Just remember it takes -1 to your WS due to Toxic Miasma. And spread your Warriors out to stop the Warp Blast template attack.


A Basilisk with legs that fires exploding balls of goo. Now back to reality. Generally a Tyranid player will sit a Biovore behind cover or at the edge of the board. The Spore Mines that it fires are not as powerful as they used to be however they can still kill stuff on a large basis. If you can reach the Biovore and have the opportunity then go ahead and kill it (which isn’t hard). Don’t go out of your way to kill it though. Again people don't normally take these because they are a lot worse then they used to be.


This is the single most frustrating model in 40k (please don’t debate, cause I will beat you with a stick), the big, ugly, stupid and HUGE Carnifex. Now there are the traditional Carnifexs that just hobble up the field soaking up fire and going D6+2 Attacks on the charge hitting on 4’s with Strength 10. Then there are the Carnifexs that are immensely harder to kill with 5 wounds, toughness 7 and a 2+ Armour Save. And then there are the Carnifexs that have two heavy guns with BS3 and just sit and fire (very rare). The best way is that the Carnifex is slow, just 6” a turn. So utilize Raider and just pick wounds of them. Also kill it like you would a Hive Tyrant but it is just harder. Wyches here are your friend. Watch out for its Barbed Strangler because that hurts a lot.



Comprised of mostly Hormagaunts and Genestealers. HQ will be a Winged Hive Tyrant, Warriors or a Broodlord. Also expect a far few Infiltrating or Deep Striking models such as Raveners. These types of bugs are the biggest pain due to the fact that they almost reach our speed (I know, I’m scared too…). So you really need to prioritize your targets for shooting and combat.


Contains Carnifexs and Zoanthropes. Small units of Leaping Ripper Swarms used to out-flank opponents. HQ is a Hive Tyrant with Tyrant Guard. Hope to god that you have more then 5 Dark Lances. Otherwise then you’re in big trouble. Also equip with Agonizers and use Wyches effectively. Also realize that with this army killing off Synapse isn’t as important. I have also got a PM from Just Chillin’ saying that he has much trouble with the Big Army (meaning, Broodlord, Hive Tyrant, 2x Genestealers, 3x Carnifexs). This makes a lot of sense, however can be easily dealt with. The squad with the Broodlord is the first target or just stay outside 12” (remember no Fleet), also the rest can be dealt with accordingly. Dark Lances and Disintegrators are your friends. Just use Raiders to run rings around the big things.


This is a standard army with a combination of both Big and Fast. The more hardcore version of Tyranids. Use the tactics as above and remember to prioritize.

Recommended Weapons, Units and Armies


There are four weapons that you benefit greatly from and one that is not bad really. These are split up into two categories: Killing Big Things and Killing Small Things (Raveners, Zoantropes and Biovores count as Big Things). Firstly to Kill Big Things: Dark Lances (no duh) and Disintegrators. You could use Blasters but if you are that close then you are being assaulted next turn. The average Big Thing has between 2-5 wounds with no Invulnerable Save (okay 6+ but no-one cares) with a 2+ Armour Save. These are completely ignored by AP2 weapons and the highest Toughness is 7, which is easily scored against. Secondly to Kill Small Things IMO the best weapons are: Splinter Cannons, Splinter Rifles and Shredders. Everything ignores Armour Saves of Gaunts and co. except Shredders, which doesn't really need to. With a blast and S6 it doesn't matter, so if you know you are facing Tyranids then bring some Shredders instead of Blasters. The average Small Thing has Toughness 3, 1 Wound and a 5+ Armour Save so fire away. Just remember that with small things you want to kill the entire squad instead of just picking of parts due to the fact that they barely ever run away.


Warriors are good friends here with the variety of weapons available and Scourges are very nice as well. However of all the units I would recommend it would have to be Grotesques and Wyches. If Grotesques beat a unit that isn't Fearless then they auto flee (In the Tyranid codex under Synapse it says that they auto-pass Ld checks, they are NOT Fearless), and in conjunction with Wyches are very nasty. Also using a Talos against Gaunts and Hormagaunts is a good idea, just stay away from rending. Realize that as the fastest army against a non-shooting army your Raider can run rings around the enemy and leave them running in circles. Something I normally do is run a Raider with Wyches around the side taking wounds off Big Things with the Dark Lance and then just taunt the enemy at the back of his lines.


Remember it is not a good thing to tailor an army against a certain race however if there is a player that you really want to beat then read on. IMO the best army against a basic Tyranid army is a Gunboat Bonanza army. This means no models on foot with less then 12" movement. Troop=Raider Squads with Dark Lances. Fast Attack=Reavers with Blasters (almost always Jetboost, they are more a distraction for big things then anything else). Heavy Support=Scourges with Splinter Cannons, Ravagers with 3 Dark Lances OR 3 Disintegrators (nothing else necessary) or a Talos (I know, slower then 12" but it is just so cool and awesome...). For Elite=Wyches in a Raider and Grotesques in Raider with Haemmy with Destructor. HQ=Primarily Lord with Punisher (no Agonizers. If you get an Agonizer that means you are going for things that can instant kill you) and Haemmys with Destructors.

Final Word

Just a final word to....(cough) fill time...umm
Okay now if you are still struggling to fight of Tyranids you can do either of three things:

- Continuous prayers to the dice gods and ritual sacrificing of Space Marines.

- Yell, Kick, Scream and then claim cheese and hide in a dark corner.

- Or you could do what every good player did and continue playing and reading both your and the Tyranid codex to learn more yourself. As much advise as one can give it doesn't beat the experience of learning it yourself.

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