Sunday, March 21, 2010

My Thoughts on the Tyranids: part III – Termagants, Tervigons and Ripper Swarms

In my experience, most of the competitive Tyranid lists have been using at least one small squad of Termagants. They are generally only taken so that the Tervigon can become a troop choice, and I would say you should always take a Tervigon for every Termagant squad. However, the in-game utility of Termagants should not be overlooked, because they can really help out the Tyranid army. Fleshborers are now very capable anti-infantry weapons, so when you have large amounts of Termagants they will do damage in the shooting phase. The other weapons are garbage, so just skip ‘em. The CC boosts if you have points left over, go for it. With Adrenal Glands, termagants can be a decent CC unit.

Tervigons (in Troops because nobody ever takes them as HQ)
A monstrous creature Troop choice, what’s not to love? I suppose the idea behind the Tervigon is that it’s a big force multiplier to the army. Catalyst and Onslaught are both useful powers, and I think one of them should be given to every Tervigon. You can’t take both, so have to consider how it will affect the other units in your army. Obviously, the main purpose of the Tervigon is to poop out Termagants. Usually you will roll doubles within the first 2 turns, so don’t rely on ever getting more than 20. In objective games, you can use the spawned Termagants to delay incoming enemy assault units. In Annihilation missions, you don’t want to give away free Kill Points, so the Tervigon tends to be a big points-sink in Annihilation. For that reason, I would say never take 3 or more Tervigons, and even 2 is pushing the proverbial envelope.

Ripper Swarms
I have never seen anyone use these, but I think they can be great sit-at-home objective holders. Let’s say you take 3 bases for 30 points. Keep them in cover, and go to ground whenever they are shot at. Now you have 9 wounds with a 2+ cover save, along with Fearless. Good luck getting rid of that. On the downside they can be an easy Kill Point, and you must always be in Synapse range for them, or there is no point in taking them at all.


  1. Swarms can't hold objectives :P

    Tervies rock, and Termies rock because they make Tervies even better. 2 Tervies and requisite Terms are staples in my army.

  2. lol, missed that rule. Well then they suck :P

  3. What about termagants with devourers ? They deal lots of damage, despite their fragility.

  4. They are too expensive in my opinion. There are plenty of better shooting units in the codex.

  5. Wow dude did you read the entries before this review? Aside from the swarms not scoring, which is nothing new, Tervigons can definitely have both psychic powers, which most people I've seen have been doing. Seems too expensive for my blood though.

    Fleshborers are actually weaker now than they used to be, since living ammo is gone, so I'm not sure what you mean by "...they are now very capable..."

    The other gaunt weapons aren't at all garbage, myself and other Tyranid players I've talked to have used devourers to great effect. Granted, they shouldn't be used in the same way as FB gaunts, but having that many shots with the ability to reach out and touch someone from behind cover is rather nice. I was having fun with my devourer gaunts at strength three with two shots in the last codex. Now, they're just nasty.

  6. (re:devgaunts) You should give em a shot, MOM. You'll be absolutely shocked at how powerful their shooting is.

    Consider this:

    a unit of base warriors has the same BS and gun...and costs 30 points per gun. A devourer gaunt unit has 3 times the firepower of said warrior unit, and is only slightly more frail(T3 vs T4...although they don't have to worry about ID). A unit of 10 devgaunts is 100 points. That unit can fire 30 shots at 18 inches. This unit HAS to be dealt with, because that rate of fire causes a serious amount of wounds, AND reduces the enemy's Ld for morale checks. Devgaunts are highly underrated, they're quite good.

  7. I get more mileage out of Termagants from counter-attacking with toxin sacs.