For now we'll focus on the Questoris Knights. The Questoris Knights use the Questoris Knight Crusade Army Force Organization Chart, which is a unique type of core detachment that we can use in the Age of Darkness games. As a primary detachment, the compulsory slots are 1 HQ and 1 Troops, and the optional additions are 1 more HQ, 4 more troops, 3 Elites, 2 Fast Attack and 2 Heavy Support. Yippee. Ah, and the obligatory Lord of War chocie, but no Fortification. As per other Horus Heresy armies, it also has an Allied Detachment, which if you've been following the past few posts, I'm considering adding a Mechanicum Allied Detachment. I'll talk about that later.
Apparently you can also use the Questoris Knights as allies. As long as you fulfil the compulsory requirements of 1 HQ and 1 Troops as stipulated in the Allies Detachment for other armies (meaning a minimum of 2 Questoris Knights as allies, that's a heavy investment of points), there isn't any problem - hence I can either ally my Questoris Knights to my Mechanicum army, or use my Mechanicum army as allies. Very flexible.
Now, what do you mean by HQ and Troops for Knights? Aren't all Knights just...Lords of War? Fortunately, the Questoris Knight Crusade Army Force offers special rules and choices to turn your Knights into the respective slots, and these are called Household Ranks. Each comes with bonuses at the cost of points, while some, like the Troops choice Scion is free but grants no bonuses. Household Ranks are something related to the fluff - in a Knight household, each Knight is ranked accordingly and thus serves different roles. I'll go through each and every Household Rank.
Ah. the compulsory HQ slot and you can take 2 of them. Can you say awesome?
The first Household Rank is Seneschal, which costs 50 points. Basically your Knight adds 1 to both his Ballistic Skill and Weapon Skill and also his invulnerable save (Ion Shield, for example, turns into 3+). Awesome. Just awesome. Expensive, but perhaps worth it to give your Knight that extra protection and making sure his attacks hit.
Second Household Rank is Lord Scion at 25 points, which grants the +1 to Ballistic Skill and Weapon Skill but forgoes the invulnerable shield. Still a good choice.
The next compulsory slot, Troops. Like HQ, there are 2 of them. Regardless of what you choose, both Household Ranks grant Objective Secured. Very useful for claiming objectives with your giant Knight.
First is Scion Martial, which is free and basically "impose no modifiers". So what you see is what you get.
Next is Scion Aspirant, which allows you to deduct 35 points from your Knight's cost. However, the Ballistic Skill, Weapon Skill and invulnerable save are all reduced by 1, making your Knight less likely to hit and less likely to survive. Additionally, you are limited only to half your Knight army - meaning if you have 6 Knights, only 3 can be the Scion Aspirant. Well, I'm not exactly fond of this so I won't use it.
There are 3 Household Ranks for Elites, including Freeblades which is...huh? Well, anyway...
The first is Preceptor, which costs 25 points in exchange for improving your reserve roll by 1, gives all Knights in the same detachment that is within 6" Interceptor and allows them to fire Overwatch including Hellstorm templates. Sounds awesome.
The second is Aucteller, which is a whooping 35 points. A Knight with this Household Rank chooses an enemy Warlord, Lord of War or a Gargantuan Creature or Super-heavy vehicle as his Sworn Enemy, and by destroying this Sworn Enemy the controlling player earns an additional D3 Victory points. Yes, in addition to the points gained from Slay the Warlord or Super-heavy stuff. Conversely, if the Sworn Enemy survives at the end of the game, the opponent gains 1 Victory point. Well, law of equivalent exchange. Oh, and if the Aucteller's Knight is destroyed in combat with the Sworn Enemy, he can make an additional single close combat attack against the Sworn Enemy before blowing up. With a D weapon (unless you chose your Castigator), that sounds pretty fun. I'll take you down with me! Ha ha!
Legendary Freeblades are legendary. I don't see any Freeblades in this book so they must be in other Horus Heresy books. I think. Oh well.
Fast Attack makes your Knights faster. I guess.
Starting with Scion Dolorous at 25 points, your Knight gets to re-roll failed charges and failed sweeping advances. And he must charge an enemy Knight, Walker, Monstrous Creature, Primarch, Super-heavy vehicles or Gargantuan Creature during the assault phase, if the opponent has any in range.
Scion Uhlan is free! YAY! It gives your Knight the Scout and the Hit and Run special rules, but in turn they have their Armor value of their front reduced by 1, dropping it to AV12. Ouch. In addition, they can only make snap shots with their weapons at targets greater than 24" away. WHAT?! That pretty much sucks....unless you're using a Knight Acheron, which I believe this rule was made for. Hellstorm template doesn't suffer much from the reduced range, after all.
Now this is the Household Rank I love the most. Well, there are 2 of them, but I think you know which I will like more. Yay. It makes my Knight a lot more useful and covers their weakness to Flyers. Woohoo!
First up is said favorite Scion Arbalester at 25 points. Knights with this Household Rank gains Tank Hunter and if they didn't move during movement phase, they gain Skyfire in my subsequent shooting phase if I want. Very, very useful. I can substitute my Knight Warden as a Knight Castigator (since the Avenger Gatling cannon resembles the Castigator bolt cannon a lot) or maybe even the Knight Styrix though that's less convincing and throw up 8 S7 AP3 shots or 5 S8 AP3 shots into the air at enemy flyers. Sounds good to me.
The second is the Scion Implacable at 35 points.which is pretty cool. They can wreck buildings, adding a 1 to the Building Damage table roll, which is pretty lackluster (who runs their Knights all the way up to destroy buildings?!) but they do have the ability to re-roll Stomp results as well as have a 5+ invulnerable save against grenade and melta bomb attacks in assault. Unfortunately they can't make sweeping advances, but you probably already wiped out the infantry with your Stomp and Destroyer attacks. I hope.
That's it, I suppose!
Anyway, here is the introduction to the Mechanicum Cerastus Knight-Atrapos!
|Mechanicum Cerastus Knight-Atrapos|
As with all Cerastus Knights, the Atrapos has initiative 4 and 4 attacks, making him deadly in melee. He costs a whooping 435 points, though, making it the most expensive Knight in 30K and 40K, even more expensive than the 425-point Knight Crusader (430, if you upgrade to rapid-fire battle cannon). But of course, as this thing is utterly deadly.
It possesses an Ionic Flare Shield that reduces the strength of any shooting attacks by 1, and 2 if the attack was a blast or template. Pretty nifty. Furthermore, any shooting attack he makes against Super-heavy vehicles and Gargantuan Creatures becomes twin-linked.
He possesses an Atrapos lascutter which can be fired as an eight-inch beam but with Destroyer strength and AP2, and wield it in melee as a Strength D AP1 weapon with wrecker. His secondary weapon is a Graviton singularity cannon that has Armorbane and is large blast. 36", S8 AP2, I can destroy vehicles reliably with this! Furthermore, it has Collapsing Singularity, which has the risk of taking a hull point off your Knight if you roll a one. Basically it has the Gets Hot! rule. BUT! BUT!!! If you roll a 6 instead, the attack has the Vortex special rule! In other words, it becomes a Destroyer weapon, and pretty much behaves like Barrage (meaning you determine wounds by assuming the shot came from the center of the blast template). The marker isn't removed from play but remains on the table as impassable terrain. At the beginning of every subsequent player's turn, the marker scatters 2D6" until someone rolls a double (NOOO!). After the scatter, any model who ends up being unlucky to be under the marker's new location is hit with a Destroyer Strength attack. Woohoo.
Yes, that's how awesome he is. I'm so tempted to purchase him BUT I don't have the money and I can't afford him. Especially since I'm sticking to building a Mechanicum army and I already have at least 2 Knights (3 if I'm allowed to proxy my Knight Warden as a Knight Castigator or Knight Styrix). So nope. But I'm so tempted! DESTROYER WEAPON! And being a Cerastus Knight, the 8" means nothing as he can run 12" during movement phase, 3D6" in his run phase (though no shooting or charging that turn), and if he survives until your next turn he'll be destroying pretty much everything with his Destroyer weapon. Awesome.
By the way, I did some changes to my Taghmata Army List to make it more affordable and to include the Knights in it. I was thinking of using Mechanicum Allies, so I could either go for pure Legio Cybernetica allies (I wonder if this is legal? Can I field just 1 maniple of 2 Castellax Robots and say they're my compulsory troops choice for allies?) or I could just go vanilla Taghmata, use a Magos Dominus instead of an Archmagos, field a Thallax cohort of 9 Thallax shock troopers with 3 Phase-plasma fusils alongside 2 Castellax Battle-automata with Darkfire cannons and siege wreckers and a single Thanatar Siege-automata with Paragon of Metal. Since Castellax robots are support troops, I've to make this list allies instead. So my primary detachment would be Questoris Knight Crusade Army with a Knight Paladin Seneschal and a Knight Errant Scion Martial.
If it's legal to use Legio Cybernetica even for allies, then I would rather go for an Archmagos Dominus with the Cortica Primus, 3 Castellax Battle-automata in one single troops slot, 3 Vorax Battle-automata with poisoned ammo, and a Thanatar Siege-automata with Paragon of Metal. Again, my Knights remain the same. Again, I'll appreciate it very much if anyone can leave any advice here. PLEASE! I need advice! Suggestions! Anything!
We'll see. I'll have to find myself a copy of the Taghmata Army List before I make any decision. The Omnissiah protects!