Against the Ravening Horde
Preview the Forces Battling the Tyranids in The Great Devourer
“Never have I faced a tide of foes that can alter both strategy and flesh to hasten our downfall. Swift as these beasts adapt, we must be swifter, for if we fail, the Tau Empire will drown in its own blood.”
–Shas’el Vorcah of Kel’shan
The massive Tyranid Hive Fleets approach the Traxis sector, devouring all that stands in their way. Their hunger is insatiable. Their numbers are legion. Only the bravest or most foolish warriors would dare to stand against these swarms. Fortunately for those already battling in the Traxis sector, The Great Devourer brings new unique units to lead your forces into battle!
The Great Devourer is the first deluxe expansion for Warhammer 40,000: Conquest, and it introduces the Tyranids as the eighth playable faction with two new warlords and a host of other cards. While the Tyranids undoubtedly hold the spotlight, every other faction receives two new cards to help them stand against the Tyranid threat. In today’s preview of The Great Devourer, we turn to these new cards to explore the new tactics you can use in your fight for the Traxis sector.
If any faction can rival the Tyranids’ unflagging devotion to battle, it is surely the Orks. With the introduction of The Great Devourer, any Ork warlord will be able to benefit from the help of Boss Zugnog (The Great Devourer, 54). Boss Zugnog is a formidable fighter, but he’s at his best when he helps you coordinate a crushing attack from afar. As an Action during the combat phase, Boss Zugnog allows you to choose up to two Ork army units at his planet. Then, you can deal each of those units one damage in order to move it to the first planet!
The ability to suddenly reinforce your troops at the first planet cannot be overestimated. Because you can use Boss Zugnog’s ability as an Action, you can wait to fly in your reinforcements until every enemy unit is exhausted, allowing you to strike without repercussions. You do have to deal one damage to each unit that you move, but for units like the Rugged Killa Kans (Core Set, 62), extra damage is just a benefit in disguise.
As you press the assault on the first planet and smash your opponents in battle, you can spread even more damage across your opponent’s units with the Ork Landa (The Great Devourer, 55). During the combat phase, you can exhaust the Ork Landa to discard the top card of your deck. If that card is an Ork card with an odd printed cost, your opponent must deal indirect damage to his units equal to the card’s cost! Even a single indirect damage can change the course of some battles, but if you discard a Goff Nob (Core Set, 59), the indirect damage could prove crippling to your opponent’s forces.
The Orks of the Traxis sector may battle the Tyranids by suddenly redeploying their forces and dealing indirect damage, but the Dark Eldar take flight and attack from above. In The Great Devourer, you can support your warlord’s leadership with a Solarite – a highly skilled, genetically enhanced warrior that excels at aerial combat. Solarite Avetys (The Great Devourer, 58) naturally bears the Flying keyword, which makes it much harder for ground units to bring him down. Even aside from the Flying keyword, Solarite Avetys has a powerful Reaction to punish any ground forces that anger him: after Solarite Avetys takes damage from a non-Flying unit’s attack, you can deal two damage to the attacker. There’s no limit on this ability, which ensures that whenever your opponent brings down Solarite Avetys, he’ll pay the price in his troops’ blood.
You can take control of your enemies’ tactics with Dark Possession (The Great Devourer, 59), a Dark Eldar Torture event. After you play Dark Possession, as your next Action this phase, you can play any event card in your opponent’s discard pile as if it were in your own hand! Although events like Indomitable (Core Set, 25) only affect their owner’s faction, you could easily trigger a powerful, board-clearing event like Doom (Core Set, 141) or Warpstorm (Core Set, 93). Most of all, Dark Possession gives you access to wide array of options – and as your opponent’s discard pile grows, you gain more and more ways to respond to his threats.
The Eldar of Warhammer 40,000: Conquest are known for their cunning and wily attacks, flitting across the battlefield and adapting their strategy to match their foes. The Tyranids introduced in The Great Devourer are an enemy like no other, so it’s good that the two Eldar cards in this deluxe expansion bring an unparalleled level of adaptability, starting with Autarch Celachia (The Great Devourer, 60).
Autarch Celachia allows you to tailor his attacks to defeat his enemies by using his ability. As an Action, you can spend a resource to give Autarch Celachia either Area Effect (1), Armorbane, or Mobile until the end of the round. If you’re facing a swarm of foes, you can use Area Effect to clear them away; if you’re trying to bring down a deadly enemy unit, you can use Armorbane; and if you need to readjust your strategy on the fly, you can gain the Mobile keyword. The ability to choose any of these effects makes Autarch Celachia one of the Eldar’s most versatile units, giving you a strong way to deal with any threat.
The Eldar also benefit from the addition of a new event card that gives them a way to shut down some of the most potent threats in the game. Most signature squads include a single copy of an incredibly powerful support or attachment, such as Cato's Stronghold (Core Set, 9) or The Plaguefather's Banner (The Scourge, 26). These cards can change the course of a game almost singlehandedly, so it’s important to have an answer to these cards. Now, you can play Subdual (The Great Devourer, 61) to place any support card or attachment back on top of its owner’s deck. Although this isn’t a permanent solution, Subdual can certainly buy you time to win crucial battles.
Battle the Swarm
The Tyranids are coming to the Traxis sector, and every faction must consider new tactics if it’s going to survive. Whether you lead the attack with a Tau Pathfinder, rampage through battle with a World Eaters warrior, or stand alongside the Deathwatch, you’ll find cards to support every faction in The Great Devourer.
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