Chapter Focus: Dark Angels

The Dark Angels are coming – and they’re bringing with them new units, new Stratagems and more that’ll catch them up with their Codex-compliant brethren. Codex: Dark Angels is absolutely packed with new content, and we thought we’d show you some of the most exciting stuff you’ve got to look forward to – starting with their army-wide special rule.

The Dark Angels have an army-wide ability, equivalent to Chapter Tactics, which helps them keep their Elite units from breaking in the face of a poor Morale test, as well as aiding the shooting power of the entire army.

Grim Resolve is great for units of Terminators in particular – you’ll be free to take 10-man squads without having to worry about the cost of morale. Meanwhile, Hellblasters are even deadlier, as re-rolling 1s helps them avoid slaying themselves with a bad roll to hit.

There are all sorts of Stratagems to benefit your army, from Codex: Space Marines standbys like Killshot and Flakk Missile, to more esoteric options based around the unique ways in which the Dark Angels go to war.

Weapons from the Dark Age is the perfect Stratagem to pair with your plasma-armed units, whether they’re Company Veterans with plasma guns, Hellblasters or Ravenwing Black Knights armed with plasma talons.

One of the most thematic Stratagems in the book is Hunt the Fallen, which makes for some exciting narrative hooks in your games.

Hunt the Fallen gives one character in the enemy army an additional attack (representing their fierce desire to keep the secrets of the Fallen safe), but in return allows your Dark Angels units attacking them to re-roll failed hits, as well as giving your Deathwing and Ravenwing a re-rollable charge. This is superb for making a deadly strike in the first turn with a unit of Deathwing Knights.

Speaking of the Deathwing, there’s plenty in the new codex for fans of the 1st Company of the Unforgiven. Most excitingly, you can now clad your Deathwing in Cataphractii and Tartaros armour – the former providing nigh-unparalleled durability for your units, and the latter allowing for greater mobility.

There’s still plenty of good reasons to take your “standard” Deathwing troops – the Fortress of Shields, for instance, turns the already-durable Deathwing Knights into a nigh-impenetrable wall of ceramite.

This means that enemies will never wound you on better than a 3+ and will usually be wounding on a 5+ or worse – pretty awesome, right?

Finally, Deathwing Dreadnoughts and Land Raiders are back thanks to a new Stratagem. With Inner Circle, powerful units – like the Contemptor Dreadnought, which is now finally available to the Dark Angels! – will be able to benefit from the nearby presence of Deathwing Ancients and Belial.

The new codex was also an opportunity for the Design Studio to work out how the Dark Angels are structured in the wake of the UItima founding. As you may know, most Space Marine companies now have two lieutenants that serve alongside the company Captain. In the Dark Angels, this has been expanded to include the Ravenwing – the legendary, all-mounted 2nd Company of the Unforgiven. Ravenwing lieutenants are known as Talonmasters, and they serve alongside Sammael (or his successor equivalent) with specially modified Land Speeders. On the tabletop, these guys are pretty nifty. With a twin heavy bolter and a twin assault cannon, they’ve got a punishing number of shots (particularly with Sammael nearby providing re-rolls to hit) and they also help the rest of your army excel, removing cover saves from nearby enemies and providing your Dark Angels with re-rolls of 1s to wound.

This is already pretty awesome before we factor in the many powerful Warlord Traits and Relics of Caliban available to Dark Angels characters. Our favourite combo is the Huntsman Warlord Trait and the Lion’s Roar relic; together, you’ll be able to shoot characters out of the units they’re supporting.


Brilliant Strategist, on the other hand, is a perfect fit for a more cerebral Dark Angels player. You’ll be able to get your Command Points back on a 5+, and you’ll effectively get a free command re-roll once per game to boot!

Finally, for your Librarians – from Ezekiel to your Primaris reinforcements – there are 3 new psychic powers to take advantage of using some nasty Leadership-based mechanics. One trick you can pull of is using Mind Wipe to drop the stats on an enemy character before following up with a deadly Trephination attack:


You’ll be able to renew your hunt for the Fallen with these new weapons very soon – make sure to pre-order your Dark Angels codex this weekend.

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