Strange Alliances

Preview the Tau Warlord from the Decree of Ruin War Pack


“We fight now not to claim this world, but to save it.”
–Commander Starblaze

The battle for the planet of Sacaellum will soon begin with the release of Decree of Ruin, the first War Pack in the Planetfall cycle for Warhammer 40,000: Conquest! Soon, countless armies will fight and die on the fields of Sacaellum in the unending struggle for plunder, archaeotech, invulnerable strongpoints, and materiel to fuel the engines of war. As the battle begins, however, two factions clash on the surface of Sacellum—the Astra Militarum and the Tau.

Two warlords are included in Decree of Ruin. In our announcement, we explored the tactical opportunities offered by Broderick Worr, a Commissar of the Atra Militarum. Today, however, we turn to his opposition: Commander Starblaze of the Tau Empire!

Saving Sacaellum

The Tau Empire has expanded quickly into the Traxis sector, and their guiding principle—For the Greater Good—has proven attractive to many, even those who once fought for the Emperor of Mankind. Some Tau commanders are known for accepting humans into the ranks of their armies and giving them the chance to prove their new devotion to the Greater Good. Commander Starblaze (Decree of Ruin, 6) is one such leader.

Like Gorzod (Deadly Salvage, 49), Commander Starblaze dramatically breaks away from the alliances previously available to the Tau. When you lead the Tau armies with Commander Starblaze, you may include common Astra Militarum cards in your deck, but you cannot include other cards from a non-Tau faction. In other words, Commander Starblaze exchanges the ability to take Space Marine or Eldar allies for a chance to marshal the forces of the Astra Militarum. Importantly, Commander Starblaze allows you to include more than just units in your deck—you can include any common Astra Militarum card, including powerful supports like Staging Ground (Zogwort’s Curse, 77) or Catachan Outpost (Core Set, 53). 

Furthermore, Commander Starblaze has proven to be an able commander and he has earned the respect and loyalty of the human forces he leads. Whenever Commander Starblaze commits to a planet, you may move one of your Astra Militarum units from an adjacent planet to your warlord’s planet! Strategically redeploying your forces before battle begins can be crucial, and by choosing a ready unit at an adjacent planet, you gain another ready unit to strike in the first round of combat at your warlord’s planet.

You’ll find that Commander Starblaze’s signature squad is equally ready to work in conjunction with the Astra Militarum. The signature squad opens with four copies of the Ardent Auxiliaries (Decree of Ruin, 7). These warriors have practiced fighting alongside other races, and they’ve learned to make the most of their allies’ strengths. Because of this, after the Ardent Auxiliaries commit to a planet that has one of your Astra Militarum units, you can ready the Ardent Auxiliaries, perhaps allowing them to strike in the first round of combat.

You can further increase the ties between the Astra Militarum and the Tau under Commander Starblaze by playing Bond of Brotherhood (Decree of Ruin, 9). Two copies of this event are included in Starblaze’s signature squad, and it offers a potent boost to your units. When you play Bond of Brotherhood, you may choose a planet. Each Tau unit at that planet gains a heightened HP and each Astra Militarum unit at the planet gains two more ATK until the end of the phase!

Starblaze's Outpost (Decree of Ruin, 8) offers another opportunity for the Tau to support the Atra Militarum. This card reads, “Action: Exhaust this support and return an Astra Militarum army unit at a planet to your hand to put a Tau unit with equal or lower printed cost into play from your hand at the same planet.” Starblaze’s Outpost offers a vast amount of tactical adaptability. Not only does it allow you to potentially remove a wounded, exhausted Astra Militarum unit from battle at any time, it replaces that unit with a Tau unit who could then strike immediately. By coordinating the flow of battle from Starblaze’s Outpost, you can make attacks that your opponent simply wasn’t expecting.

Throughout Commander Starblaze’s signature squad, there are plenty of ways for you to gain extra attacks—whether by moving units with Commander Starblaze, readying them with the Ardent Auxiliaries, or bringing new units into play with Starblaze’s Outpost. You can even boost these units’ ATK and HP with Bond of Brotherhood. In the face of these mounting attacks, your opponent will be forced to spend more shields to protect his units. Eventually, he’ll run out of shield cards, and that’s where the Searing Burst Cannon (Decree of Ruin, 10) becomes useful. This attachment can be given to any unit, and when that unit damages an enemy, the damage is doubled if no shield card was used. If you’re hoping to destroy your opponent’s warlord, the Searing Burst Cannon forces him to spend his shields quickly or face the consequences.

Side by Side

The battle for Sacellum is about to begin, and you must choose your side. Will you fight for the glory of the Emperor with Commissar Broderick Worr? Or will you lead the joint forces of humans and Tau for the Greater Good? Whichever side you choose, you’ll find both warlords and their signature squads in the Decree of Ruin War Pack!

Pre-order your copy of Decree of Ruin at your local retailer today.

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