Necron Warriors – Gauss Flayer vs Gauss Reaper

Necron Warriors now get a choice of weapon, either the long-time classic gauss flayer or the new gun on the block, the gauss reaper. Today, we’re taking a look at both to try to pick a favourite.

Let’s start by looking at the profiles for each weapon. First up, we have the gauss flayer, carried by Necron Warriors since their introduction into Warhammer 40,000.

In the other corner, we have the new gauss reaper, which has had an upgrade since we first saw it in the Indomitus boxed set, going from Rapid Fire 1 to a much more flexible and dangerous Assault 2.

So, the flayer has the range advantage but the reaper is better when you get up close and personal. The gauss flayer is a weapon that you’d give to an objective-camping unit while the reaper works better in the hands of a squad trying to drive enemy units off their objectives. Let’s see how the Dynastic Codes of the Necrons can affect these two weapons.

First up, those wishing to unleash the Solar Fury of the Mephrit will get additional 3 inches of range on their guns.

This is great for both weapons, but it means that a unit of Necron Warriors armed with gauss reapers can really control the middle of a battlefield, especially if there are 20 of them. Two Strength 5 shots each at 15 inches will make anyone think twice about going near them. Of course, a unit armed with gauss flayers that can reach out and damage units in your opponent’s deployment zone from the first turn is nothing to be sniffed at either.

Next up, the followers of the Silent King can take advantage of a single wound re-roll each time they fire.

Again, this works really well with both guns but it’s especially good for the gauss flayer with its Strength of 4. Use that re-roll when you need to slay with the flay(er).

If you’re devoted to the Sautekh Dynasty, they have an incredible Dynastic Code for the gauss flayer – in fact, ALL Rapid Fire weapons in your army!

Pop your Necron Warriors on an objective and watch them double-tap anyone who gets within 18 inches. That doesn’t mean that the Sautekh Dynasty is all about the gauss flayer though. Their Overlord, Nemesor Zahndrekh, has a couple of tricks up his metallic sleeve that really help the gauss reaper too.

Finally, gauss flayer fans that want to create their own dynasty, can choose Pitiless Hunters as their Dynastic Tradition to give a boost to their Rapid Fire weapons.

Which weapon is better then? They’re both great guns and have their uses in every Necrons army. More proactive armies that like to get in the face of their enemy will benefit more from the gauss reaper. That includes those forces that deploy from reserve such as from a Night Scythe or using the Veil of Darkness Relic, where you can put your Necron Warriors within that 12-inch sweet spot. Meanwhile, reactive armies will prefer the gauss flayer. Of course, since a unit can take a mix of both weapons, there’s no excuse not to have the right weapon at the right time.

The Necron Warriors kit is available to pre-order from Saturday. Whether you’ve already tried out both of the weapons or not, join us over on the Warhammer 40,000 Facebook page to let us know which one you prefer.

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