Warhammer 40k Orks Tactics | Beginner's Guide & New Rules!


Orks just got brand new rules from the new Psychic Awakening book, “Saga of the Beast” and we are going to break down all the new information and tactics for you! We will talk about all the new subkultures, stratagems and shiny gubbins in the new book!

Orks New Rules for Subkultures and Specialist Mobs

Orks New

You can now choose for a detachment to contain a specialist mob and if you choose to do so certain units in the detachment will relace their <Clan>  keyword with the keyword of that specialist mob. For example, if you choose to give a detachment a Feral Orks subkulture then your Warboss would replace all the <Clan> keywords on his datasheet with <Feral Orks>, including any aura or buff abilities he might have. Also, you cant double down on subcultures in a single detachment. This is one of the Coolest new rules for Orks.

  • Pyromaniacs. You can re-roll any or all the dice for the number of shots a unit with a flame weapon has. For Example skorcha’s or burna’s would benefit from this. Additionally, you can re-roll wound rolls for the melee profile of Burnas and add +1 to rolls for burna bombs. Battlewagons loaded up with burnaboys, and Nobs with scorchas would be really spicy.
  • Huntas. infantry models aside from gretchin gain a 5++ when on a terrain feature.  Also, if your or your opponent’s units are in a terrain feature in the fight phase you get -1AP on melee weapons. This can make your new Ork Kommandos much better at digging out entrenched troops! Not to mention your lootas, who will thank you for the 5++.
  • Boomboyz.  Any unit armed with rokkit weapons, stickkbomb weapons, tankbutsa bombs, wing missiles, kannons, killkannon, deffkannons, Da boomer, and Lobbas can all add 1 to their AP values. This is a Solid pick to help you kill tougher targets like Space Marines.
  • Flyboyz. Anything with the FLY keyword gains a cover save when the target of a shooting attack. Plus, if the unit is in melee combat and was not within 1” of an enemy unit at the start of the preceding charge phase, your opponent has to subtract 1 from hit rolls against it. Essentially this gives your planes some extra protection and makes stormboys a real pain to kill in melee.
  • Grot Mobs. Gretchin models gain a 6++ and any vehicle models with the keyword can re-roll 1’s to hit. Amazing on Mek Guns, and you should never pass this one up if you take them. Long live the Grot Revolutionary Committee!
  • Tin’Eads. All of your Kans, Deffdreads, mega armor, and Gork/Morkanaut units add +1 to hit rolls with melee weapons. This is crazy good on these units, especially the dreads, Mega Nobs, and Mork/Gorkanaut’s. Having your meganobs hit on 3’s, without a banner nearby is really good. However, having all your stompy robots hitting on 2’s in melee is even better. Metal Orks are the best ones apearantly
  • Feral Orks- Warboss, Boys, and Nobs that aren’t on a bike or have mega armor get this next gem. Everyone with this subkulture piles in 6” and when advancing they roll 2 more dice and discard the two lowest. This makes boys faster and is perfect if you are footslogging them up the board. Also, worth mentioning that this is the fluffiest choice for anyone playing Snakebites. 
  • Madboyz- This one only affects your Orks infantry and bikers but not gretchin. However, this is easily the wackiest one I’ve seen yet. It requires you to roll a D3 at the start of each battle round and consult a chart for the entire detachment. A roll of a 1 gives you Moroniks, which adds 1 to your saving throw, Meanwhile, a roll of a 2 will allow units to automatically pass Morale tests. Lastly, a roll of a 3 adds +1 strength to every unit. Keep in mind that you cant re-roll this so whatever you roll is what you get. Honestly, I don’t really know how to feel about this one as its kind of awesome but a bit too random for my liking. It seems best on Nobs and bikers, and even boys could get a 4+ save in cover.

New Ork Stratagems

Orks New
  • Da Kleverest Boss 1CP. You can select one Big Mek from your army then add 1 to his wound and attack characteristics. Also, you get to make him WS 2+ and only get to use this once per battle and you cant use it id you have Buzzgob in the army. This is a nice little upgrade that can be worth considering if you aren’t bringing old Buzz along for the ride, I just wish it made him BS 2+.
  • Grot bumper 1CP.  One use only per Boomdakka Snazzwagon. You can use this to automatically pass a saving throw for a wound caused by a ranged weapon. Yes, this means the grot on the bumper can soak up a lascannon shot for you, and I love it.
  • Temperamental Shokk Drive 1CP. You can pop this stratagem after one of your Shockjump Dragsters fires its guns and it immediately teleports. Firstly, this ability is AMAZING, as it allows you to teleport once in the movement phase to drop in and shoot a target and then immediately teleport it again, out of harm’s way. 
  • Da Biggest Boss 1CP. You can’t use this more than once per battle, or if Ghazgull is in your army. Otherwise, you gey to pick 1 Warboss in your army, add 1 to its attacks, wounds, and give it a 4++ save. This is a great pick if you are trying to save some points, don’t want to bring Ghaz, or just miss having the old version of him that could hide behind your boys.
  • Klever Spanner- 1/2CP. This Strategem is used before the battle on a Burna or Loota squad and costs 2 CP if the squad has 10 or more dudes in it. For the rest of the battle when determining the number of shots the unit makes you can roll one extra dice and pick the highest. This does a lot to boost both Burna boys and lootas and will save you a bunch of CP in the long term.
  • DA Burnin Highway 1CP. Targets a Kustom Boosta Blast in the shooting phase and makes their burna exhausts 10” assault 3 Strength 5, and AP-1. This one is no joke as it gives you 12 heavy flamer shots from 80pt unit that already has some decent ranged weapons.
  • Flyin ‘Eadbutt 1CP. Pick a unit that has the Flyer Battlefield roll at the end of your movement phase, and it immediately crashes and burns (you don’t need to roll for it). This Stratagem is absolutely hilarious, and yet it actually manages to be surprisingly useful. For example, if you have a Flyer that is already about to die and likely won’t contribute much in the shooting phase, you can use this to drop a bunch of mortal wounds on an enemy formation. Also, part of me really wants to run a bunch of flyers so I can crash 1 into my opponent every game turn.
  • Full Speed Ladz! 1CP. Target Biker or Deffkilla Wartrike can add 1 to its strength characteristic after successfully charging a unit. 
  • Squig Bombs 1CP. Pick a Blitza-Bommer in your movement phase and you can add +1 to its Boom Bomb ability. This is just one of those little things that can make them more consistent and is a solid Stratagem for only 1CP.
  • Speshul Shells 2CP. In the shooting phase you can use this on a unit of Flash Gitz to increase the range of their guns by 12”. Granted, it a tad expensive at 2CP but this can allow you to keep your Gits stationary in the movement phase and still shoot at distant targets.
  • Patch Up 1CP. At the start of your turn, you can select a  Mork/Gorkanaut or Stompa and count its wounds as double when referencing its damage table. This can be a solid way to get one last turn out of a battered Gorkanaut and is well worth it for 1CP.
  • Unstoppable Momentum 2CP. This one is a bit weird, as it lets one of your units charge again in the charge phase if it dealt mortal wounds in the charge phase and is no longer within 1” of an enemy unit. 
  • Wildfire 1CP. You can use this stratagem in your movement phase on a burna bomma unit. You can select another enemy unit within 6” of the first one and roll a d6 for each model in the unit (up to 10). On each roll of a 5 +, that unit suffers 1 mortal wound. Unfortunately, it does not stack with the arsonist subculture. 
  • Dredded Death Machine 1CP. In the fight phase, you can select a Deff Dredd unit and until the end of the phase, each time you kill a model you can make one additional attack against the same unit. This is especially scary on a big Dredd mob, as it can quickly snowball. 
  • Hit ‘Em Harder 1CP. This next one lets you target a meganobs unit from your army and for the rest of the phase, you get to add 1 to the damage characteristics of melee weapons the unit is armed with. 
  • Kustom Job 1CP. You can use this stratagem before the battle, to give a unit 1 additional custom job from the following list:

Kustom Jobs 

Orks New
Like this, but more Orky.

Also, it is worth noting that a few of these will apply to a “Mob” unit even if they operate independently after set up. Which makes the ones you can use on Speed Mobs and Dread Mobs, particularly good. Some of the Orks new gear and gubbins is definitely worth taking.

  • Squig Hyde Tires: Speed freak units can add 2 to the units’ move characteristics. Also, this one works on Battle Wagons, Gun Wagons, and Bone Breakas which can really help them move up the board a bit quicker.
  • Souped-Up Speshul: Replaces a Snazzwagon’s mek speshul, and changes it to assault 15, strength 4, -1AP, and damage 1. Honestly, I’m, not 100% sure about this one, as you honestly have much better choices in this list.
  • Gyroscopic Whirly Gig. Shokk Jump Dragsta unit only. This essentially allows them to always use the shock tunnel ability when advancing, even if you did not roll a 4+.  This can be a great way to make sure a Dragster will be able to teleport and fore at a specific target and pairs well with the Orks new Shokk Drive stratagem
  • Sizzly Rivets. Custom Boosta Blasta only. When resolving an attack made with a rivet cannon by a model in this unit, wound rolls of a 6 deal a mortal wound in addition to its normal damage. This can be a nice way to get some extra damage out of your Boosta, but it doesn’t have quite enough shots to make sure it ability goes off
  • Korkscrew. Megatrack Scrapjet unit only. The first time you consolidate in each fight phase, you can immediately fight again. This is actually good, as this lets you fight twice with what is a power fist in all but name.
  • Nitro-Powered Squigs. Ruckatruck Squig Buggie only. When resolving an attack made by this unit’s squig launchers, you can add 1 to the wound roll. The Squig Buggie really needed the extra bit of punch to make it viable and this helps solve that issue.
  • Gorks Roar. You can use this on a deff killer wartrike to add 4” to the models’ killajet. In addition, you can change its burna profile to a assault 6. This is a solid pick, 
  • Da Boomer. This one works on a battlewagon, bonebreaka, or gunwagon with a kill cannon only. It changes the gun to heavy 2 D6, strength 8, AP-2 and damage 2.
  • Zagzap. Lets you replace a model’s Zzap gun with a version that is Heavy 1 Strength 2d6, Ap-3, Damage 3, and automatically hits its target. AS an added bonus if you roll a 9+ for its Strength characteristic it automatically inflicts 3 mortal wounds instead. So, this is actually pretty good, as anything that removes Orks Shooting skills from the equation is typically a good thing.
  • Forktress. Pick a Battlewagon, Bonebreaka, or a Gunwagon and give it a 3+ armor save and a 5++ invulnerable. This is good on any Wagon variant, especially one that wants to safely ferry its cargo up the board.
  • Pincha. Replaces a Grabbin’ Klaw with a version that gets +1 strength has -3AP and does D6 damage. Also, you can only make 1 attack with it, but get to add +3 to your hit rolls if the target is a vehicle or monster.
  • Red Rolla. Bone Breaka only. You can replace its Bonebreaka ram with a version that adds 6 to the models attacks when it successfully charges. 
  • Orkymatic Pistons. Works on Kans, Dreads, and Mork/Gorkanauts, and is aimed at increasing their speed. Essentially, it adds 3” to their move values and lets them re-roll advance rolls. Probably best used on a big Dread Mob armed with melee weapons that needs to close with the enemy as fast as possible.
  • Sparkly Bits. Another one for Kans, Dreads and Gork/Morkanauts, but instead of improving their speed it gives them +1 to their BS. This is soo good I wish I could take it multiple times, but it seems particularly good on Killa Kans with rokkits and on Morkanauts. 
  • Dirty Gubbins. Kans and Deff Dread only. Your Opponent has to subtract 1 from hit rolls that target them with ranged weapons. Honestly, this seems like the best pick for a bunch of Deff Dreads, as it will increase their survivability considerably.
  • Slug Gubbin. Replaces a Gorkanauts deffstorm mega-shoota with a version that has 24 shots, Plus if you manage to get it within 12” of your target you add +1 to hit rolls. As Such, you should always take this upgrade for a Gorkanaut if you’re bringing one.
  • Cog Klaw. Gork/Morkanauts gain the ability to count the damage rolls with their Klaws that are under 4 as being damage 4. Another amazing Custom Job that will make your Gorkanaut an absolute monster in melee.
  • Blitza- Gatler: Finally, one that just for the Stompa and thusly increases its killing power to respectable levels. Firstly, it makes it Supa-gatler damage 2 which is a considerable buff that allows it to take on Primaris Marines. Also, it lets you re-roll the dice for the weapons Psycho-dakka ability once each phase. This gives Orks an actual option for taking a Lord of War

Clan Psychic Powers

Orks New
  • Deathskulls – Maniacal seizure (WC 7) An enemy unit within 18” has to subtract 1 from its hit rolls and attacks made by friendly units against it improve the AP of their attacks by 1. This is a great power that pulls double duty of making your opponent units worse while making your Orks better. 
  • Bad Moons- Gleamin’ Gear (WC 6). One Bad moons unit within 18” gets to add 1 to their saving throws until your next psychic phase. Overall not bad, and it can bump the save of some of your Orks to a 4+ in cover.
  • Snakebites- Constriction (WC 6). Pick one enemy unit within 12” and until your next psychic phase, they halve their attack characteristic. While I’m sure it’s going to be FAQ’d, right now it doesn’t state that it goes to a minimum of 1 or rounds up, meaning that a unit with models that only have 1 attack would get 0 attacks. This is Orks new favorite psychic power for trolling guardsmen.
  • Evil Suns- Visions in the Smoke (WC6). A vehicle unit within 12” (you can only select a vehicle with 18+ wounds if you roll a 9+ on the psychic test) can re-rolls all of it attacks until your next psychic phase. Brutal on things like Gorkanauts, and outright broken on something like a Stompa.
  • Blood Axes- Clever Talk (WC 6). An enemy unit and until your next psychic phase it can shoot overwatch and fights last in melee. A solid utility power that has an infinite range, and can, therefore, be used on turn one to mess with your opponents.
  • Freebooters- Jolly Ork’s Glare (WC 6). One enemy unit within 18” halves its movement and has to subtract 1 from its advance and charge rolls. This is a solid utility power that can prevent your opponent from trying to run away from you.  Suddenly, catching that unit of Eldar bikes doesn’t seem all that difficult.

Ghazghkull’s New Groove

Chunk Chungus himself.

So, this might be the biggest thing that’s come out of the new book. Also, I mean this both literally and figuratively. Ghazghkull’s new model is truly massive and his updated rules reflect his new stature. As such, he now has 12 wounds and a degrading profile along with toughness seven a  2+ save. The downside is that he now has the monster keyword. However, he still gets his old 4++ save and CANT LOSE MORE THAN 4 WOUNDS A PHASE!

That last part is absolutely insane! As it means that if you are not trying to shoot him with psychic powers or fight him in melee it would take 3 whole turns to kill him. Also, remember that your opponent can’t shoot what they can’t see, so have him hide behind a Gorkanaut.

Additionally, his offensive power has seen a boost with his melee weapon! His Klaws are now Strenght x2 AP-4 and a flat damage 4. Meanwhile, he boasts a base strength of 7 so he will be wounding everything in the game on 3+. Another interesting thing is that as his profile degrades his attacks increase up to a total of 7. Also, his ranged weapon is nothing to sneer at, becoming what is essentially a 12 shot heavy bolter. Also, he can now also be included in any Ork detachment without them losing their clan Kulture. As Icing on the cake, he lets nearby Goff units re-roll hit rolls of a 1 in melee.

In Conclusion 

Well, that’s all we have for today, but there is a lot more coming! Orks have a ton of options right now and are going to be an absolute blast to play. Also, tomorrow we will have a beginner’s tactics guide with an army list to help you get your “WAAAAAGH!” on! So be sure to check back with us and since your here why not check out our Grot Tactics Article or a Battle report featuring Orks?

If you want to talk to the Nights at the Game Table team and discuss this article and everything Warhammer with them join Game Talk For Gamers.

Don’t know what Warhammer 40k is and how to play it? Check out the video that we made here just for you.

If you already know how to play the game and you’d like a free guide that teaches you how to paint professional-looking miniatures, advanced tournament tips from a 40k World Champion, how to find more time to play, and simple methods to get cheap miniatures go here.

If you’d like a breakdown of the advanced tactics and strategies for all 40k armies, painting tutorials from a Golden Demon winner, secret battle reports and tons more consider becoming a Nights at the Game Table Member today. Click on this link to learn more.

As always thanks for reading!

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

More to Explore

alpine gt 40k

Alpine GT 40k Winning Lists

These are your Alpine GT Winning Lists results from afar! This past weekend saw the Alpine GT, a 9 round, 57 participant

Latest Articles