Adeptus Astartes: Dark Angels

Dark Angels Tactical Summary as of 10-26-16

The Dark Angels unlike most Space Marine chapters are not built on some mirror image of a fantasy trope, but instead are defined by a singular dark secret that motivates almost all their actions. The secret of the Fallen is what defines the Dark Angels and the army rules reflect that truth.

The Dark Angels have traditionally have been three different types of armies in one, with most folks playing armies with very little unit variation. The current 7th edition iteration attempts to unify them through various Formations and Detachments. The three pillars of Dark Angel armies are the Ravenwing, Deathwing, and Battle Companies. Games Workshop’s strategy to force players into playing a variety of Dark Angel units is centered on making the most iconic Dark Angel army unplayable: the Deathwing.

Deathwing Terminators were the beating heart of the Dark Angels, now they are merely an accessory you add to your army. Don’t be discouraged though even without the Deathwing, Dark Angels are one of the top tier armies of 7th ediiton. Dark Angels get the amazing Space Marine Battle Company rules with a few twists and the Ravenwing ability to re-roll Jink saves make them very formidable. Thanks to products like Dark Vengeance Dark Angels are very easy to buy and field. Throw in a few Black Knight units, some transports, and anyone can have a competitive Dark Angel force. If you look below the surface you will also find some amazing units like Azeral, who is often used to force multiply allied Imperium units. The Dark Shroud is an example of one terrible unit made great with the current codex. As a starter army for competitive play you can’t really do any better than starting with the Dark Angels especially on a budget.

Below you find all the quick reference material you need to build an competitive or fluffy Dark Angels army.

As of 10-26-2016 Dark Angel Detachments are…

  • Combined Arms Detachment
  • Allied Detachment
  • Air Superiority Detachment
  • Lion’s Blade Strike Force
  • Deathwing Strike Force
  • Ravenwing Strike Force

(See tabs for details)

Combined Arms Detachment

 

Force Organization

Compulsory: 1 HQ, 2 Troops

Optional: 1 HQ, 4 Troops, 3 Elites, 3 FA, 3 HS, 1 Lord of War, 1 Fortification

Restrictions: All units chosen must have the same Faction (or have no Faction).

Command Benefits:

Ideal Mission Commander: If this Detachment is chosen as your Primary Detachment, you can choose to re-roll the result on the Warlord Trait table.

Objective Secured: All Troops units from this Detachment have the Objective Secured special rule. A unit with this special rule controls objectives even if an enemy scoring unit is within range of the objective marker, unless the enemy unit also has this special rule.

Source: Warhammer 40k 7th ed. Rule Book

Allied Detachment

 

Compulsory: 1 HQ, 1 Troop

Optional: 1 Troop, 1 Elite, 1 FA, 1 HS

Restrictions: This Detachment cannot be your Primary Detachment. Your Warlord can never be chosen from this Detachment. All units chosen must have the same Faction (or no Faction). All units chosen must have a different Faction to any of the units in your Primary Detachment (or no Faction).

Command Benefits:

Objective Secured: All Troops units from this Detachment have the Objective Secured special rule. A unit with this special rule controls objectives even if an enemy scoring unit is within range of the objective marker, unless the enemy unit also has this special rule.

Source: Warhammer 40k 7th ed. Rule Book

Air Superiority Detachment

 

Force Organization

Compulsory: 1 Flyer Wing

Optional: 2 Flyer Wings

Restrictions: All Units must have the same Faction.

Command Benefits:

Air Commander: Pick a Wing Leader from this Detachment to be its commander. If the commander is in Reserve, you can re-roll the dice in the Interception sub-phase. If you have Air Superiority and the commander is in Reserve, you can add or subtract 2 from your Reserve Rolls, rather than 1, and your opponent must subtract 2 from their Reserve Rolls.

Combined Formation: You can roll once for all of the Wings in this Detachment to see if they arrive from Reserve. If the roll is successful they all arrive. If it fails none of them do. You can roll individually for each Wing if you prefer.

Objective Secured: All Transports from this Detachment which can Hover have the Objective Secured rule. A unit with this special rule which is Hovering controls objectives even if an enemy scoring unit is within range of the Objective Marker, unless the enemy also has this special rule.

Source: Supplement: Death from the Skies

Lion’s Blade Strike Force Detachment

 

Force Organization

Compulsory: 1+ Battle Demi-Company

Optional: Inner Circle (0-1 per BATTLE DEMI-COMPANY 1 Azrael, Belial, Sammael, Company Master, Interrogator-Chaplain or Librarian, 1+ Ravenwing Attack Squadron Formation, Ravenwing Support Squadron Formation, Ravenwing Silence Squadron Formation, 10th Company Support (1-5 Scout Units), The Hammer of Caliban Formation, Deathwing Redemption Force.

Restrictions: This Detachment must include a minimum of one Core choice and one Auxiliary choice. It can optionally include any number of additional Core or Auxiliary choices, in any combination, and up to one Command choice for each Core choice. Only the datasheets listed above can be included in this Detachment, and all units in the Detachment must have the Dark Angels Faction.

Command Benefits:

Company Support: If a Lion’s Blade Strike Force includes two Battle Demi-companies, one including a Company Master and the other including a Chaplain, then together they form a Battle Company. Any unit from the Battle Company that has the option to take a Rhino, Razorback or Drop Pod as a Dedicated Transport may take one at no points cost (though they must pay for any additional upgrades and options as normal).

Supreme Fire Discipline: Unless Jinking, all models in this Formation that have the Grim Resolve special rule fire Overwatch using their normal Ballistic Skill characteristic.

Source: Codex: Dark Angels

 

Deathwing Strike Force Detachment

 

Force Organization

Compulsory: 1 HQ, 2 Elites

Optional: 2 HQ, 10 Elites

Restrictions: All units in this Detachment must have the Deathwing special rule or be Dedicated Transports. Units of Venerable Dreadnoughts in this Formation may only include one model, which must be given a Drop Pod as a Dedicated Transport.

Command Benefits:

Summoned to War: All units in this Detachment must begin the game in Deep Strike Reserve. If your army includes a Ravenwing Attack Squadron or a Ravenwing Strike Force (see below), you can choose to automatically pass or fail any Reserve Rolls you make for units in this Detachment; there is no need to roll.

First Knight of Caliban: If this Detachment is your Primary Detachment, you can re-roll the result when rolling on the Dark Angels Warlord Traits table. Take the Fight to the Enemy: Units from this Detachment can either shoot and then Run, or Run and then shoot, in the Shooting phase of the turn they arrive by Deep Strike.

Source: Codex: Dark Angels

Ravenwing Strike Force Detachment

 

Force Organization

Compulsory: 1 HQ, 2 Fast Attack

Optional: 2 HQ, 1 Elites, 10 Fast Attack, 3 Heavy Support

Restrictions: All units in this Detachment must have the Ravenwing special rule.

Command Benefits:

First Huntsman: If this Detachment is your Primary Detachment, you can re-roll the result when rolling on the Dark Angels Warlord Traits table.

Speed of the Raven: During your first turn (or your second turn if the units in this Detachment were placed in Reserve – see below), any units from this Detachment that Turbo-boost or move Flat Out count as Jinking until your next turn. However, units from this Detachment that do so can still fire their guns normally in your next turn; they do not have to fire Snap Shots.

Strike as One: All of the units in this Detachment must either be placed in Reserve or deployed as normal. If placed in Reserve, all units in this Detachment automatically arrive at the start of your second turn.

Source: Codex: Dark Angels

As of 10-25-2016 Dark Angel Unique Item groups are…

 

  • Relics of Caliban

(See tabs for details)

 

Only one of each Relic of Caliban may be taken per army.

Shroud of Heroes 10 pts:

The bearer of the Shroud of Heroes has the Feel No Pain special rule. In addition, while he is not in a unit, the bearer has the Shrouded special rule.

Foe-smiter 15 pts:

Range 24 inches, Str 4, AP 4, Type: Assault 4, Master-Crafted, Shred

Lion’s Roar 20 pts:

The Lion’s Roar is a Master-crafted combi-weapon. Range 24 inches, Str 7, AP 2, Type: Assault 1, Blast, Gets Hot, Master-Crafted, One Use Only

Mace of Redemption 30 pts:

Range -, Str +3, AP3 Melee, Blind, Concussive, Bane of the Traitor = When the Mace of Redemption is used to attack a unit with the Chaos Space Marines Faction, its AP is increased to 1.

Monster Slayer of Caliban 40 pts:

At the start of each Fight sub-phase in which the wielder is locked in combat, roll a D6 to determine which profile the Monster Slayer of Caliban uses that turn. Roll of 1 = Range -, Str User, Ap3, Type: Melee. Roll of 2-4 = Range -, Str +1, Ap3, Type: Melee. Roll of 5-6 = Range -, Str +2, Ap3, Type: Melee, Instant Death

The Eye of the Unseen 40 pts:

The bearer of the Eye of the Unseen has the Fear and Preferred Enemy special rules.

 

As of 10-25-16

The next section features all the various Formations each faction has. Expand each Formation for detailed information for, including (red highlighted) links to shopping lists for each Formation.

The Unrelenting Hunt Formation

The Unrelenting Hunt

Requirements: 1 Company Master, 1 Librarian, 1 Tactical Squad, 1 Deathwing Terminator Squad, 1 unit of Deathwing Knights, 1 Ravenwing Attack Squadron, 1 unit of Ravenwing Black Knights, 1 Ravenwing Dark Talon

Restrictions: All units in this Formation must have the Dark Angels Faction.

Special Rules: Hatred (Chaos Space Marines,

Relentless No Respite, No Forgiveness: Models from this Formation that are within 12? of a model with the Chaos Space Marines Faction automatically pass Leadership tests, and can re-roll failed charge rolls.

Source: Dataslate: The Unrelenting Hunt

Dark Angels Librarius Conclave Formation

Dark Angels Librarius Conclave Formation

Requirements: 1 Ezekiel, 2-4 Librarians

Restrictions: All units in this Formation must have the Dark Angels Faction.

Special Rules: 

Empyric Connection: At the start of the Psychic phase, you can nominate one model from this Formation. If you do this, the nominated model has access to any psychic powers known by other models from this Formation within 12? until the end of the phase; however, other models from this Formation within 12? of the nominated model cannot manifest psychic powers until the end of the phase. Furthermore, when the nominated model makes Psychic tests this phase, he will harness Warp Charge points on a result of 3+ rather than 4+ if there is at least one other model from this Formation within 12?. Focused

Interromancy: When manifesting the Mind Worm psychic power, models in this Formation can double the power’s maximum range if there is at least one other model from this Formation within 12?.

Source: Dataslate: Dark Angels Librarius Conclave

Battle Demi-companies Formation

Battle Demi-companies

Requirements: 1 Company Master or Chaplain, 0-1 Command Squad, 0-1 Company Veterans Squad, 3 Tactical Squads, 1 Assault Squad, 1 Devastator Squad, 0-1 Dreadnoughts Units

Restrictions: None.

Special Rules: 

Fire Discipline: Unless Jinking, all models in this Formation that have the Grim Resolve special rule count their Ballistic Skill as 3 instead of 2 when firing Overwatch.

Objective Secured: A unit with this special rule controls Objective Markers even if an enemy scoring unit is within range of the Objective Marker, unless the enemy unit also has this special rule.

Source: Codex: Dark Angels

Deathwing Redemption Force Formation

Deathwing Redemption Force Formation

Requirements: 1 model chosen from the following list: Belial, Company Master, Interrogator-Chaplain, Librarian, 2-5 Deathwing Terminator Squads, 0-1 Deathwing Command Squad, 0-1 units of Deathwing Knights, 0-1 Venerable Dreadnoughts Units

Restrictions: If it is taken, the unit of Venerable Dreadnoughts in this Formation may only include one model, which must be given a Drop Pod as a Dedicated Transport. All Independent Characters in this Formation must have Terminator armour.

Special Rules: Preferred Enemy (Chaos Space Marines)

Deathwing Assault: All units in this Formation must be placed in Deep Strike Reserve. Immediately after determining Warlord Traits, make a secret note of which of your turns you would like each Deathwing Redemption Force in your army to arrive: your turn 2, 3 or 4. All units in this Formation automatically arrive by Deep Strike at the start of the chosen turn. If this Formation includes a Venerable Dreadnought embarked in a Drop Pod, the Drop Pod automatically arrives at the start of the chosen turn, and ignores the normal rules that determine when a Drop Pod arrives.

Take the Fight to the Enemy: Units from this Formation can either shoot and then Run, or Run and then shoot, in the Shooting phase of the turn they arrive by Deep Strike.

Source: Codex: Dark Angels

Ravenwing Attack Squadron Formation

Ravenwing Attack Squadron Formation

Requirements: 1 Ravenwing Bike Squad or 1 Ravenwing Attack Bike Squad, 1 Ravenwing Land Speeders or 1 Ravenwing Land Speeder Vengeance Unit

Restrictions: The unit of Ravenwing Land Speeders may only include one model.

Special Rules: Scout.

Attack Squadron: If the Ravenwing Land Speeder or Ravenwing Land Speeder Vengeance from this Formation scores one or more hits upon an enemy unit in the Shooting phase, then all models in this Formation’s Ravenwing Bike Squad or Ravenwing Attack Bike Squad add 1 to their Ballistic Skill characteristic when shooting at the same target for the rest of the phase.

Summon the Deathwing: Friendly units composed entirely of models with the Deathwing special rule do not scatter when they Deep Strike, so long as the first model is placed within 12? of a model from this Formation. For this to work, the model from this Formation must have been on the battlefield at the start of the turn.

Source: Codex: Dark Angels

 

Ravenwing Support Squadrons Formation

Ravenwing Support Squadrons Formation

Requirements: 1 unit of Ravenwing Land Speeders, 1 Ravenwing Land Speeder Vengeance or 1 Ravenwing Darkshroud

Restrictions: The unit of Ravenwing Land Speeders must include at least 3 models.

Special Rules: Grim Resolve, Interceptor, Strafing Run

Ravenshield: When an enemy unit declares a charge against a friendly unit with the Ravenwing special rule, models from this Formation within 24? of that friendly unit can choose to fire Overwatch against the charging unit (even though vehicles cannot normally fire Overwatch). Template weapons can only use the Wall of Death special rule if they are within 6? of the friendly unit. Remember that a unit can still only fire Overwatch once per turn.

Support Squadron: All vehicles in this Formation must form a single Vehicle Squadron as described in Warhammer 40,000: The Rules. However, this Vehicle Squadron counts as two units for the purposes of calculating Victory Points if it is completely destroyed.

Source: Codex: Dark Angels

Ravenwing Silence Squadron Formation

Ravenwing Silence Squadron Formation

Requirements: 2 Nephilim Jetfighters, 1 Ravenwing Dark Talon

Restrictions: None.

Special Rules: 

Capture Run: When making a Bombing Run with the stasis bomb of this Formation’s Ravenwing Dark Talon, do not roll for scatter; the stasis bomb hits automatically. Furthermore, enemy models that suffer an unsaved Wound from the stasis bomb must roll two dice and pick the highest result when taking their Initiative tests to see if they are removed as casualties. In missions that use Victory Points to determine the winner, the Slay the Warlord Secondary Objective is worth D3 additional Victory Points to the controlling player at the end of the game if the enemy Warlord was removed as a casualty as result of a Capture Run.

Fighter Escort: When making Reserve Rolls, make a single roll for this entire Formation, which you can choose to re-roll. On a successful Reserve Roll, all of the units in this Formation arrive from Reserve

Source: Codex: Dark Angels

Hammer of Caliban Formation

Hammer of Caliban Formation

Requirements: 1 Techmarine, 1 unit chosen from the following list: Land Raider, Land Raider Crusader, Land Raider Redeemer, 1 unit chosen from the following list: Predators, Whirlwinds, Vindicators

Restrictions: This Formation’s unit of Predators, Whirlwinds or Vindicators must include three models.

Special Rules: Monster Hunter, Tank Hunters

Hammer of Heretics: This Formation’s Techmarine must begin the game embarked upon this Formation’s Land Raider, Land Raider Crusader or Land Raider Redeemer. Whilst the Techmarine from this Formation is embarked upon the Transport vehicle from this Formation, that vehicle’s Ballistic Skill is increased to 5.

Might of the Lion: All vehicles in this Formation must form a single Vehicle Squadron as described in Warhammer 40,000: The Rules. However, this Vehicle Squadron counts as 2 units for the purposes of calculating Victory Points if it is completely destroyed.

Source: Codex: Dark Angels

Ravenwing Abductor Squadron Formation

Ravenwing Abductor Squadron Formation

Requirements: 1 Flyer Wing consisting of  2 Nephilim Jetfighters and 1 Dark Talon

Restrictions: The Dark Talon must be the Wing Leader

Special Rules:

Dedicated Escorts: This formation’s Wing Leader receives the special rules for the Vigilance Attack Pattern if the Wing is in any type of Attack Pattern, not just the Vigilance Attack Pattern. The Vigilance special rule is received in addition to the normal special rule for the Attack Pattern.

Source: Supplement: Death from the Skies

 

Below are any links to any buying guides, product reviews, or tactical articles related to the Dark Angels.

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