Death Guard 8th Edition

As of 09-29-2017 Death Guard Summery 

The Death Guard make their grand entrance into the pantheon of new armies with a codex for 8th edition. It has been a long time coming for this Traitor Legion and Games Workshop teased us just the right amount time to keep interest. The big release for the new Death Guard was of course the introduction of the Daemon Primarch Mortarion, but unlike say the Thousand Sons release, the Death Guard feel more like a complete army with a host of new toys. A total 13 new units make up the Death Guard codex.

As for how they play that is still an open question, but we do get our first Mortal Wound defense army along with a host of other resiliency tricks. The center of the Death Guard of course is Mortarion and his force multiplying, but being a Character you cannot hide, we have already seen many shooting lists easily take him out in one round of shooting. So keeping Mortarion alive is on the upmost minds of Death Guard players, with the Deathshroud Bodyguard getting the first crack at protecting him.

The good thing is the a Death Guard army can be designed around any almost any play style. If you want a zombie horde list you can do that, if you want a sit back shooting list you can do that, if you want an elite in your face army you can do that too. We just don’t know if it matters, with a broken meta of Poxwalker spam and Daemon Princes.

As for the units themselves Poxwalkers are still the top of the Death Guard food chain especially with a certain infectious Stratagem. Myphitic Blight-Haulers seem pretty good with Putrescent Fog, along with fantastic looking mortar Plagueburst Crawler. Plague Marines do have a lot of new toys to play with and can in certain situations deal out a ton of damage, but cost effectiveness will be hard to balance. We are already seeing Death Guard armies taking advantage of specialize Stratagems like Blight Bombardment and Cloud of Flies. Overall, we just don’t know yet how the other units will play with so many different tools it is hard to see how things work in concert together until enough players get games in.

Below you find all the quick reference material you need to build a Death Guard army.

As of 09-29-2017 Death Guard Stratagems groups are…

  • Universal Stratagems
  • Death Guard Stratagems

(See tabs for details)




As of 08-18-2017 Universal Stratagems are…

Command Re-Roll: 1 CP

You can re-roll any single dice.

Counter-Offensive: 2 CP

Used right after an enemy unit that charged has fought. Select one of your own eligible units and fight with it next.

Insane Bravery: 2 CP

You can automatically pass a single Morale test and must be used before taking the test.



As of 09-29-2017 Death Guard Stratagems are…

Nurgle’s Rot: 3 CP

Use once per battle, in the Shooting phase. Select a friendly Death Guard Character and roll a D6 for every unit within 7″ of them. On a 4+, the unit being rolled for suffers D3 mortal wounds. Nurgle models cannot suffer wounds from Nurgle’s Rot.

Gifts of Decay: 1/ 3 CP

Use before the battle. Your army can have one extra Relic of Decay for 1 CP, or two extra Relic of Decay for 3 CPs. All the Relic of Decay that you include must be different and be given to different Death Guard Characters.

Blasphemous Machines: 1 CP

Use this Stratagem just before a Death Guard Vehicle attacks in the Shooting phase. Until the end of the phase, that vehicle can ignore the penalties for moving and firing Heavy Weapons, or for Advancing and firing Assault weapons.

Chaos Boon: 1 CP

Use at the the end of a Fight phase in which one of your Characters (not a Daemon Prince) slays an enemy Character, Vehicle, or Monster. Roll 2D6 on the Chaos Boom table and apply the effects.

Veterans of the Long War: 1 CP

Use this when a Death Guard Infantry or Biker unit is selected to attack in a Shooting or Fight phase. (excluding units from Renegade Chapters). You can add 1 to all wound rolls made for the unit until the end of the phase.

Cloud of Flies: 1  CP

Use during the Movement phase. Select a Death Guard Infantry unit. Until the start of your next Movememnt phase, enemy models can only shoot this unit if it is the closest visible target.

Killshot: 1 CP

Use in your Shooting phase if a Death Guard Chaos Predator is within 6″ of 2 other friendly Death Guard Chaos Predator. If you do so, you can add 1 to the wound rolls and damage for all the Predators’ attacks that target Monsters or Vehicles this phase.

Grandfathers’s Blessings: 2 CP

Use at the end of your Movement phase. Select a Death Guard Infantry unit. One model in this unit regains D3 lost wounds. If there are no wounded models in the unit, a single model in the unit slain earlier in the battle is returned to the unit with a single wound remaining.

Chaos Familiar of Nurgle: 1 CP

Use this at the start of your Psychic phase. Select a friendly Death Guard Psyker. That model can replace any of its psychic powers with a power of your choice from the Contagion discipline.

Fire Frenzy: 1 CP

Use this in your Shooting phase. just before a Helbrute shoots. If that Helbrute did not move in its Movement phase, it can fire all of its weapons twice but all of its attacks must target the nearest visible enemy unit.

Putid Detonation: 1 CP

Use when one of your Death Guard Vehicles is destroyed; do not roll a dice, that vehicle automatically explodes.

The Dead Walk Again: 1 CP

Use this at te beginning of your Movement phase. Select a unit of Poxwalkers. Unit the start of your next Movement phase, replace that unit’s Curse of teh Walking Pox ability with the following: Each time a non-Poxwalker Infantry model, friend or foe, is slain within 7″ of this unit, add one model to the unit.

Plague Pact: 1 CP

Use when a Death Guard Character attempts to summon a unit of Nurgle Daemons using a Daemonic Ritual. You can roll up to 4 dice rather than 3 for summoning roll, and your character will not suffer any mortal wounds for rolling doubles or triples.

Blight Bombardment: 1 CP

Use just before a friendly Death Guard unit shoots or fires Overwatch: when resolving that unit’s shots, every model in the unit that is equipped with a blight grenade can throw one, instead of only one model in the entire unit being able to do so.


As of 09-29-2017 Death Guard Unique Item groups are…

  • Relics of Decay

(See tabs for details)


If your army is led by a Death Guard Warlord, you may give one Relics of Decay to a Death Guard Character in your army. Named characters cannot be given relics. Some Relics of Decay replace a character’s existing equipment, you must still pay the cost of the weapon that is being replaced.


Models with plague knife, balesword, or power sword only. Replace the bearer’s weapon with the following profile: Melee, S user, AP -2, D3. Plague Weapon. Each time you make a wound roll of 6+ with this weapon, the target suffers a mortal wound in addition to any other damage.

The Suppurating Plate

The bearer has a Save characteristic of 2+. In addition, roll a dice each time this model passes a saving throw in the Fight phase. On a 4+, the unit that inflicts that wound suffers a mortal wound after all of its own attacks have been resolved.

The Pandemic Staff

Psyker Only. The bearer of the Pandemic Staff adds 1 to their Psychic test when attempting to manifest the Smith power.

Dolorous Knell

Noxious Blightbringer only. Roll a D6 for each enemy unit wthin 7″ of the bearer at the start of each Morale phase. On a 6, that unit suffers a mortal wound. In addition, if an enemy unit takes a Morale test whilst they are within 7″ of the bearer, your opponent must roll two dice and discard the lowest result.

Fugaris’ Helm

The wearer of the Fugaris’ Helm increawses the range of any aura abilities on a its datasheet by 3″

The Plague Skull of Glothila

Following profile: Range 7″, Type Grenade 1, S -, AP -, D -. You can only use this weapon once per battle. It it hits, roll one dice for each model in the enemy unit, re-rolling any results of 1 – that unit suffers a mortal wound for each roll of a 6.


As of 09-29-2017 Death Guard Warlord Traits are…

  • Universal Warlord Traits
  • Death Guard Warlord Traits

(See tabs for details)


If your Warlord is a Character, it can use a Warlord trait. Choose your Warlord Trait immediately before either player stats to deploy their army

Legendary Fighter: 

If this Warlord charges in the Charge phase, add 1 to their Attack’s characteristic until the end of the ensuing Fight phase.

Inspiring Leader: 

Friendly units within 6″ of this Warlord can add 1 to their Leadership characteristic.

Tenacious Survivor:

Roll a dice each time this Warlord loses a wound. On a 6, does not lose the wound.

If the Warlord of your army is an Death Guard Character, you can pick the Warlord Trait from the Death Guard Table.

Revoltingly Resilient

You can add 1 to any Disgustingly Resilient rolls you make for your Warlord unless the wound you are rolling for is a mortal wound.

Living Plague

Roll a dice for each enemy unit that is within 3″ of your Warlord at the start of any Fight phase. One a Roll of 4+ that unit suffers a mortal wound.

Tainted Regeneration

Your Warlord regains one lost wound at the start of each player’s turn.

Hulking Physique

Add 1 to your Warlord’s Toughness characteristic.

Rotten Constitution

Reduce all damage inflicted on your Warlord by 1 to a minimum of 1.


Re-roll all failed wound rolls when resolving attacks made with a plague weapon for any friendly Death Guard unit with 7″ of your Warlord.

Add 1 to your Warlord’s Attacks for each wound he suffers to ax of +3. If your Warlord heals any wounds, he loses the associated bonus attacks.

Iron Warriors: Cold and Bitter

Friendly Iron Warriors units within 6″ of your Warlord automatically pass Morale tests.

Night Lords: Night Haunter’s Curse

Once per battle round, you can re-roll a single hit roll, wound roll, damage roll, advance roll, charge roll, or saving throw made for you Warlord

World Eaters: Slaughterborn

Add 1 to your Warlord’s Attacks and Strength each time he slays an enemy Character, Monster, or Titanic model.

Word Bearers: The Voice of Lorgar

Increase the range of any aura abilities on your Warlord’s datasheet by 3″


Codex Death Guard 8th edition was released on 09-09-17

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