Imperial Fists Tactics: Beginner’s Guide

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imperial fist tactics

Today’s article is all about Imperial Fists Tactics. One of the most well-known factions of Warhammer 40,000. They are known for their toughness and their siege tactics.

Are you just starting out in the Warhammer 40,00 universe? Searching for how to challenge yourself with an army that shows how the defense is the best offense? And, you also love to paint yellow? Or are you searching for a Space Marine project full of conversion and kitbashing? If so, the Imperial Fists are for you!

Who are the Imperial Fists?

Three words define the Imperial Fists: Toughness, Siege and Bolters. Imperial warriors are genetically engineered to out tough any challengers. They do siege warfare like nobody’s business. Therefore, they have made a lot of enemies since their introduction at the time of the Horus Heresy 10,000 years ago.

They are most famous for the last stand they made against overwhelming odds at the Siege of Terra. There they built, prepared, and planned all the defenses of the Palace of the Emperor to stand against the forces of Horus. 

Throughout history, the Imperial Fists chapter has seen their numbers decline. They take the business of protection further than anyone. This fact puts them in a lot of desperate fights. They have the tendency to fight to the last man standing. Casualties pile up more than they can recruit new members.

Their Primarch Rogal Dorn has instilled in his sons a determination and strong will that makes them your best ally against a tide of Tyranids or Orks. Do you like the idea of playing the 300 Spartans in an overwhelming fight? These guys live for that kind of challenge.

Imperial Fists Play Style

imperial fists tactics

Bolters, Bolters, Bolters! The Space Marine’s most famous weapon and the trusted gun is deadly in the hands of anyone. More importantly, it becomes a weapon of even more deadly efficiency in the hands of an Imperial Fist.

With Imperial Fists Tactics, your tactics are flexible, like any Space Marine army, but they tend to favor the long-range approach. Your Bolters will do the talking for you. If you get up close and personal, you still have a bolt pistol so don’t worry!

This a fairly simple way to play capture objectives. Shoot and defend your position with every bolter ammunition you have. Is the unit available to you able to have a Bolter? Take it! Tanks can have different kinds of Bolters and they are tough.

Basic units all have Bolters and are tough like all Space Marines. More elite units also have access to Bolters such as Terminators. In addition to bolters they can have thunder shields that make them even more resilient. Toughness and Bolters. You can’t go wrong with that!

Oh! did I forget to tell you why Bolters are even deadlier in the hands of these siege specialists? They have access to a Chapter Tactic that makes any hit roll of 6 to be 2 hits instead of one if it is with a Bolter. ANY kind of Bolter. You see why now?

Imperial Fists – Army List

++ Patrol Detachment (Imperium – Space Marines) [50 PL, 986pts] ++

+ Configuration +

**Chapter Selection**: Imperial Fists

+ HQ +

Tor Garadon [7 PL, 140pts]: Grav-gun

+ Troops +

Intercessor Squad [5 PL, 85pts]: Stalker Bolt Rifle

. 4x Intercessor: 4x Bolt pistol, 4x Frag & Krak grenades

. Intercessor Sergeant: Bolt pistol, Frag & Krak grenades

Intercessor Squad [5 PL, 85pts]: Stalker Bolt Rifle

. 4x Intercessor: 4x Bolt pistol, 4x Frag & Krak grenades

. Intercessor Sergeant: Bolt pistol, Frag & Krak grenades

+ Elites +

Aggressor Squad [5 PL, 111pts]: 2x Aggressor, Aggressor Sergeant

. Auto Boltstorm Gauntlets/Fragstorm Grenade Launcher: Auto Boltstorm Gauntlets, Fragstorm Grenade Launcher

Terminator Assault Squad [9 PL, 205pts]: Teleport Homer

. Terminator Sergeant

. . Thunder Hammer & Storm Shield: Storm shield, Thunder hammer

. 4x Terminator w/THSS: 4x Storm shield, 4x Thunder hammer

+ Fast Attack +

Inceptor Squad [7 PL, 123pts]: Assault bolter x2, 2x Inceptor, Inceptor Sergeant

+ Heavy Support +

Eliminator Squad [4 PL, 72pts]

. Eliminator Sergeant: Bolt pistol, Bolt sniper rifle, Camo cloak, Frag & Krak grenades

. 2x Eliminator with Bolt Sniper: 2x Bolt pistol, 2x Bolt sniper rifle, 2x Camo cloak, 2x Frag & Krak grenades

Hellblaster Squad [8 PL, 165pts]: Plasma incinerator

. 4x Hellblaster: 4x Bolt pistol, 4x Frag & Krak grenades

. Hellblaster Sergeant: Bolt pistol, Frag & Krak grenades

++ Total: [50 PL, 986pts] ++

Imperial Fists Tactics and Strategies

First and foremost, we tried to keep this list as low budget as possible. We aimed to not repeat the same unit more than 2 times. The philosophy we used to build this list is this:

-Small budget

-Cool models

-Diversity of models to paint and not get bored

-Flexibility for future purchases.

To give you an idea, this list needs you to buy the starter set of Dark Imperium (160$ US), Tor Garadon (40$), Terminators (50$), Eliminators (50$), Aggressors (50$) and in bonus, you have your rulebook and a Death Guard army to sell or keep for a future project or awesome corpses on your base to show your superiority.

Look at this guy! What’s not to love about this model. Power fist artifact named the Hand of Defiance. Just for the coolness factor, you should play him in defiance of your enemy. As a Captain, Tor Garadon has the usual abilities of a Captain – a 4+ invulnerable save from his iron halo and the Rites of Battle ability (re-rolls on hit rolls of 1). More importantly, he has an ability that will bring your units to new heights of efficiency. He can choose one unit per turn to bring its Ballistic skill to 2+.

This is amazing for your Aggressors with their auto boltstorm gauntlets which allows them to still benefit from the Chapter Tactic. That’s why they are called Walking machines of death!

Your Terminators equipped with Thunder Hammer and Storm Shield are your hammer to bring punishment to your enemy up close and personal. Behind them, you will have your gunline of Intercessors and Helblasters to take care of nuisances here and there. Eliminators, with their bolt sniper rifle, will take care of enemy characters or top priority targets while laying low in the terrain hidden in their Camo Cloak.

Bring your Inceptor in reinforcements to your Terminators and rain death on your enemies and force your opponent to make difficult choices.

Imperial Fist Tactics Conclusion

In conclusion, the Imperial Fists are a chapter of siege fighters and it’s easy to see in how they play best. They move slowly towards the enemy while capturing objective and raining Bolter ammunition on the opposing forces.

A stable chapter making you feel like a Warlord of ancient times, able to face overwhelming odds while wearing the color to blind anyone. You love yellow or have too much yellow paint that you can’t use enough to your liking? Go for this army! More importantly, as a little bonus, you have access to an upgrade kit that we highly recommend to make your force look even more fierce and thematic.

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If you don’t know what Warhammer 40k is and how to play it check out the video that we made here just for you: https://youtu.be/mxLZ2GqN4R0

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As always thanks for reading!

Special thanks to Games Workshop for the use of their images and for making the best game ever!

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