Our Advancing Play articles take one of our original lists in this case, the —Astra Militarum Tactics: Beginner’s Guide— list and brings it up to 2,000 points. Small changes are made but we endeavor to keep most of the models and weapon options from the original lists. We typically skip Forgeworld units and focus on units available at Games Workshop. The Astra Militarum has a huge range of models and options. That means you can bring psychic powers, some melee threat, and massed shooting as you play the deadliest force of the Imperium. This gives you plenty of options for your Astra Militarum Tactics. In this Advancing Play article, we will add Scion detachment and Strategies to get the most out of their play.
The Original List: Emperor’s Wrath Artillery Company
The Beginners list used Astra Militarum Tactics aimed at Treadheads and only has 7 drops. Unfortunately, for most organized events, it did not follow the rule of 2 at 1,000 points. If you are not using the rule of 2 you could squeeze a bonus command point out of this list by moving one Tank Commander to a Spearhead Detachment and splitting up the wyvern squadron into 3 individual Wyvern units. Fortunately, at 2,000 points, we are playing with the Rule of 3 making a solid foundation for your list.
Guard Battalion Jury-Rigged Repairs, Expert Gunners
- 3x Tank Commander w/ Battle Cannon & Lascannon
- 3x Infantry Squad
- Wyverns x3
Treadhead Astra Militarum Tactics
Using the Emperor’s Fist Tank Company we gain access to the relic battle cannon the Hammer of Sunderance. The Flat 3 damage is nice but the specialist detachment did cost a command point as well. However, you do have access to the ability to advance and double fire your turret weapon via the Unyielding Advance Stratagem. Double Tank aces with the same ability are allowed. So consider a two Full Payload Tank Aces for more flat 3 damage. The Original list had the means to double fire but did not have an eligible character to take the ignore cover relic. Agripinaa-Class Orbital Tracker which is fixed in this full list.
The volume of fire from the Manticore does have its merits but always consider your meta. Does your nemesis like to hide his Hive Guard out of the line of sight and in cover? Does he make them ignore ap-2 weaponry with his Hive Fleet Adaptations? Well, the Manticore bounces off of that just a bit. Fortunately, this Basilisk Tank Ace with Full Payload ignores cover at ap-3 cuts though the Hive Guard Armor Save and can Double Fire on top of that.
Emperor’s Fist Battalion 673 points
- Tank Commander: Battle Cannon, Heavy Bolters, Lascannon,
- 2x Tank Commander: Battle Cannon, Lascannon
- 3x Infantry Squad
Emperor’s Wrath Battalion 806 Points
- Company Commander
- Primaris Psyker
- 3x Infantry Squad
- Master of Ordnance
- Wyverns x3
Lambdan Lions Battalion 521 Points
- Tempestor Prime w/ Chainsword, Tempestus Command Rod
- Tempestor Prime: Hot-shot Laspistol
- Militarum Tempestus Scions x5 w/ 2 Hot Shot Volley Guns
- Militarum Tempestus Scions x10 w/ 4 Plasma guns
- Valkyrie w/ Multiple Rocket Pods ^Their Ride^
- Militarum Tempestus Scions x10
- Militarum Tempestus Command Squad w/ 4 Melta Guns
AirCav or Airborne Astra Militarum Tactics.
Moving up to 2,000 points we get the chance to add the new Scions and their doctrines gaining additional Command points from a third battalion. Allowing for Vertical insertion through Grav Chutes or having a ride, both in this case, your Scion can reach out to grab objectives across the board. You gain the combined arms experience by adding this small detachment and access to some reserves. Lambdan Lions were used for the bonus to armor penetration and Gifts from the Mechanicus stratagem. Lambdan Lions were a detachment in the only undefeated player at the Two Rivers GT covered in this Pre-Corona Monday Meta.
Billy Mays moment
But wait there’s more! The stratagem Progeny of Conflict allows for one Tempestus Character to gain a warlord trait. If you take Grand Strategist, you have essentially paid for this stratagem with the inbuilt situational reroll. Furthermore, now you have access to command point regeneration in this list. Tempestus Drop Force and Field Commander would allow this Scion Detachment access to the stratagems and warlord trait.
The worry here would be spending half your 18 command points before the game has even begun. Especially if you wanted to add the Laurels of Command to the Tempestor Prime with Command rod to place two orders on the same unit. There are plenty of options available to Scions. Such as the ones The Dak went over in the article about Tempestus Scion Tactics. Fair Warning, That article doesn’t follow the “Rule of 2” but is a solid foundation for a 2,000 point army.
Check with your TO
Post Psychic Awakening, Scions have gained the Keyword but they didn’t lose the keyword MILITARUM TEMPESTUS. The importance of that is unlike the other named Regiments, you still have access to the regimental order Elimination Protocol Sanctioned to reroll all failed to wound versus Monster or Vehicle. Your local Tournament Organizer may say otherwise and not have a leg to stand on as this was not addressed in The Greater Good FAQ but always go with what they say.
You do lose the regimental doctrine Storm Trooper unless you decide to take that. It’s a whole different argument about if your regular Guard can take that doctrine. Rules, as written, confuses some Tournament organizers and many say no. Forgive them when they get that wrong and consider the choose your adventure doctrine route at the cost of your regimental orders and associated doctrines.
Let’s add that all up. Hitting on a 2+ for disembarking near the field commander, First Rank Fire, Second Rank Fire to double the shots, Laurels of command to also issue reroll all failed to wound versus a monster, Gifts From The Mechanicus for mortal wounds and Lamdan Lions to be ap-3 besides. A few Additional Characters could allow that unit to ignore cover, have an Invulnerable save even reroll 1’s to hit all at the same time but that would be a larger detachment and very different list.
In this list, the first two Guard detachments should consider being of the same regiment so that orders can be issued to all of the Infantry Squads. Or find that balance of tough and reliable volume of shots from Jury-Rigged Repairs and Gunnery Experts or playing Peek-a-boo with the Tallarn Tank order for your Tank Commanders. Remember if you do put the Tallarn Tank Commander in reserve, with the stratagem from the Emperor’s Fist, you could bring the tank on and still double fire despite having moved your max distance.
Back to Being a Treadhead, a superheavy Treadhead
If Scions aren’t your preferred flavor of Guard there are still plenty of vehicles to use. Including a wide variety of Forgeworld models. In regards to Astra Militrarum Tactics, Tank Aces for superheavy vehicles are pretty bad. Since you can only take two, losing one to a superheavy seems a waste. Inspiring Might, rolling an additional dice then discarding a dice on leadership 7 models isn’t much help. Guard die for the Emperor, let them. Guard has several ways to mitigate morale regardless.
Steadfast Leviathan lets you gain your regimental doctrine on a super heavy auxiliary support unit. If only the Guard didn’t have cheap HQ units to fill out a supreme command and gain a command point. Oh wait, they do. Hull Down deployment, cover bonus until your giant tank moves. The list we are running features units that ignore cover and Imperial fist exist. That is to say cover isn’t all that great for the one model you are trying to keep alive. Maybe I could see this on a Minotaur from Forgeworld but Full Payload is so enticing. If you wanted a 2+ armor save you could just have a psyker to cast Psychic Barrier. That Minotaur would then have a 4++ invulnerable save.
Supreme Command Detachment 521 points
- Primaris Psyker
- 2x Company Commander
That’s just a point for point swap easy switch for the scion detachment. Adjustments can always be made with any list as you aim to meet one goal or another for your Astra Militarum Tactics. Such as adding sponsons to get more use out of Vengeance for Cadia. Guardsmen throughout the Imperium stand united in their desire to use that stratagem against Chaos. Other superheavy tanks have their Merits. Like the Banehammer to halve movement of units hit by the tremor cannon.
The Imperial Guard ahem Astra Militarum has plenty of toys and strategies used. But are lacking one key thing. Deployment outside of their deployment zone. Ratlings are the closest we have to it but they have extra restrictions that units like Space Marine Scouts do not.
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