For those of you interested here is the Tyranid army list I used for the last tournament at the FLGS (Friendly Local Game Shop) with a breakdown explaining what each unit does for the uninitiated, my views on why I took them and how they fared:
Two Tervigons with Scything Talons and Catalyst (180 pts each):
Tervigons are big lumbering beasts which have the Synapse special rule. This means any mindless grunts that are within 12 inches of them are easier to control. Without this, there’s over a 50% chance these grunts will fall back to their instinctive behaviour and don’t act as maybe you’d like them to.
Tervigons are very hard to kill. They have a high toughness, and many wounds. There are very few weapons in the game that can one shot or instant kill them, which is good because if they do bite the big one, any termagant units within a certain range of them also take significant wounds, as the tervigons synaptic connection to them overloads and bursts their tiny bug brains.
The coolest thing about Tervigons is every turn you roll 3D6 and they give birth to that many termagants. You can keep doing this until you roll a double on the 3D6 at which point the skill “dries up” for the rest of the game. This is the one of the main reasons I took these beauties. The chance to spawn more and more troops that can swarm the enemy and claim strategic objectives is just a no brainer. Despite their low initiative, their high strength and toughness make them fearsome in combat.
You can upgrade them with a psychic power called catalyst as well. This gives you the ability to grant one nearby unit the special rule “Feel No Pain” which is effectively a second saving throw taken after normal ones. With low armoured termagants running around, slapping “feel no pain” on them increases their survivability greatly and cause them to potentially be a right pain in the as for the enemy.
In two of my three games their ability to spawn termagants halted fairly on in the game due to me rolling doubles. There were a couple of times where failing the psychic test to cast catalyst resulted in losing a wound as well. Other than those little hiccups they did what they should. I destroyed vehicles with them in one game, held up a costly space marine vanguard unit for most of the game in another, and the match where the old egg sacks didn’t fail me, I was spawning wave after wave of termagants and overwhelmed the enemy with numbers. Catalyst when it worked, did its job as it should’ve making the ‘gants pester people and keep them preoccupied which gave my other units room to breathe and carry out the tasks they should’ve.
2 Hiveguard (50 points each):
The bonuses to these guys are, they have a high toughness, 2 wounds a good armour save so they shouldn’t be a push over. They do not need line of sight to use their ranged weapons, which also happen to be some of the tyranids better anti-armour weapons, which I felt was a bit lacking in my list before I added them.
Not too bad. There was only one opponent I faced that had a decent amount of vehicles to test the Impaler Cannon on, and due to bad dice rolls it could’ve gone a bit better. But with no armour to contend with, they harassed enemy troops and utilised cover for maximum effect. 6/10
2 Zoantropes (60 points each) in a Mycetic Spore (40 points):
Zoathropes kind of look like floating brains with little atrophied bodies attached. And they bring a whole world of psychic power hurt to any battlefield. They use this power to either blast apart vehicles nearly effortlessly, or to take big chunks out of enemy troop units.
Mycetic Spores are like sentient drop pods. They crash down from orbit, with other tyranids aboard them, disembark their crew, and then with whatever limited brain capacity they have, attack the nearest non-tyranid life form. However they are immobile. My plan would be to use the spore pod to drop the Zoanthropes into a advantageous position on the battlefield, and it things were looking bad use it to contest an enemies strategic objective marker.
The Zoanthropes performed admirably. On my first game they destroyed a Space Marine Land Raider in the blink of an eye. Besides that, they caused convincing casualties and were worth way more than the initial point’s value I paid for them.
The Mycetic Spore, whilst not demonstrating as thrilling results as other units did what it should, distracting the enemy and providing the zoanthropes with cover from receiving a potentially disastrous heavy weapons attack.
Termagants (Squads of 10 and 11, 50pts and 55pts):
These are the bog standard grunts for my army and the cheapest way to fill the 2 troop unit requirement for a legal army. I felt I didn’t need to take more than the minimum for the list as hopefully the tervigons would be spitting plenty of these critters out anyway. Not particularly hardy or strong in combat, but their stock equipped gun isn’t too bad and you need these chaps to take and hold objectives. Not much more to be said really.
Oddly in most of my games these chaps acted as speed bump, tying up and annoying the enemy until the big boys had a chance to get up close and personal, and in this task they faired quite well, especially when buffed with catalyst.
Trygon Prime with Adrenal Glands & Regeneration (275 points):
This thing is a beast. Yes it may be a lot of points, but I have to say he’s worth every point I paid for him. Loads of wounds, high toughness, crazy shooting attack, can turn up anywhere you like on the board if you choose to have him burrow into battle, can nip around quick if he chooses with the “fleet” rule. Adrenal Glands make him even more disgusting if he charges into combat, and regeneration gives him even more survivability potentially. Its game over, man!
Enemies died by the bucket load, vehicles exploded left right and centre and I smiled. He also has a great psychological effect on your opponents. People will either take one look at this monstrosity and divert all their firepower into bringing it down or merely run away, either way it makes them play in a manner they hadn’t hoped to, in my opinion. Worth the points for that alone.
Something I learnt whilst play-testing and rewriting this list:
Genestealers in a Mycetic Spore is a bad idea:
Having your fearsome if slightly fragile genestealers deep-strike onto the battlefield in the Spore, then having to stand still for a whole turn while they disembark isn’t good. They aren’t cheap to field and will more than likely get shot to ribbons during the enemies turn before the genestealers even get to do anything. NEVER AGAIN!