Thursday, July 14, 2011

Ork HQs and what they can do for YOU!

Orks are an interesting animal in that they have a very versatile spread of abilities that all stem from the HQ slot and trickle down through the rest of the army. 5th edition now has multiple codeci that allow for HQs to make different units troops.  So let's talk about what this means to us.

Our generic HQs are pretty straighforward. We have all star selections like the warboss and the big mek and we have massive duds like the weirdboy. We won’t talk about bad units, because we can spend endless time covering that. 

Details after the Break!


We'll start with the big mek, as he usually plays the same role in all lists. The kustum force field is the cornerstone equipment for multiple armies but specifically a kanwall army requires 2 meks with kff to shield your kans that are shielding your army. In a battlewagon rush list the same logic applies but with only a single mek to bring the bubble of goodness over your wagons and for a minimum of 85 points the support he provides is unparalleled. I always chose to equip my mek with a power klaw and 'eavy armor to give him some utility in close combat. Over all he is the best option for generic HQs. His other defining roll is to take a Shokk Attack Gun. It’s a completely random weapon that does something “Orky” whenever you roll doubles on its 2D6 roll for strength each time it fires. Usually this “Orky” thing something bad for the ork player. This is is a very fun selection, and my personal favorite selection in the entire universe of Warhammer 40k. It is sadly, too random to be competitive.

The warboss lets a nobs/meganobz squad be taken as troops and is a monster in close combat. There is one specific army that needs a warboss and that is the nob biker army. It focuses on your waboss on bike in a squad of nobz on bikes with power klaws going around and mutilating things they get near. Sometimes added to this list is the first special character we will be covering. Wazzdakka Gutsmek. Wazzdakka allows you to select Ork bikers as troops an really evolves this list from Nob Bikers to a full Kult of Speed List. Nob Bikers is a fairly competitive tournament list and can be used with brutal efficiency against some armies.

If you see this, you are probably dead.
The Special Character we have to talk in depth about is Ghazghull Thraka. In the fluff is the baddest mother fucker with green skin. On the tabletop he’s generally a 1 man wrecking crew that kicks ass first and never bothers to take names. He has the same ability as The Warboss to make a unit of Nobz scoring and I always match him with an equally powerful unit of nobs to make sure Ghaz gets to the combat and can’t be singled out in shooting. His wargear is as you would expect from a top end HQ. 2+ armor, 5++ invulnerable, he also gets +2A on the charge netting you a whopping 7 Str 10 attacks on the charge!!! Most things crumble in his Klaw. He is also an eternal warrior and his most potent ability “Prophet of the Waaagh!!!” makes him even stronger. On any turn after the first, Ghaz can declare a WAAAGGH!!! That makes all non-fleeing orks fearless, makes his 2+ invulnerable and makes all orks fleet and auto roll 6’s to run that turn. The turn that you use Ghaz’s Waaaagh!!! is general devastating to your opponents and allows massive charges from places most opponents do not expect. The Waaaagh!!! lasts until the end of the opponent’s turn, so anything that you have assaulted that doesn’t die on your turn will likely die on his turn and not have harmed Ghaz at all. (Who can stand up to 12 str 10 attacks?) Having T5 and 4 wounds is nice also. I always field Ghaz in my competitive Battlwagon rush list and he always kills a grip of stuff before meeting a glorious death.


The final special character I want to touch on in this article is Mad Doc Grotsnik. While Grotsnik is not used currently in competitive lists, the recent FAQ update has left some ambiguity if his ability to let the entire Ork force to purchase Cybork Bodies applies to Vehicles, and specifically walkers. This might change the meta and the ideas behind him as KanWall with all your Kans have a 5++ becomes a lot stronger and it may be worth doing the math hammer in Battlewagons with 5++ instead of inside a KFF bubble. What the community and in the INAT decide on the ruling might change the way we look at this character.

The final selection from the HQ choice is Old Zogwort. Unfortunately he is as bad as the wierdboy, as ork psychic powers are random, and therefore not really competitive and his stat line is meager. His ability to turn an enemy IC into a squig is cool, but its not really worth a HQ slot. I can see him being a named upgrade to a unit of Weirdboys if they were elites, but unless you are playing purely for fun and don't have any intention of winning, then leave Old Zogwart in the carrying case with the weirdboy.

This wraps up my coverage of the HQ slot of the ork codex. I have intention of covering the Elites, Fast Attack and the Heavy Support in one future article. So stay tuned and ...

WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGGGGHHHH!!!!!!

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