Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Word Bearers during the Great Crusade

Hi all

As some of you may know, I am doing a pre heresy Word Bearer army. However, when it has come to trying to find a way to make the army list Forge World have given us fit in the Great Crusade, I have been a bit stuck. A lot of the special rules that the Word Bearer list has which makes them unique, are rules that they would not have had during the Great Crusade. 

So as a result of this I wanted to discuss these rules with you and and hopefully see if you guys could come up with some appropriate alternatives . I'll start off with the generic rules for the Word Bearers which I believe can not be used in the Great Crusade and then move onto some of the character specific rules.

The Diabolist
This is the legions own Consul type who has already become engulfed in the unholy lore of Chaos. With this in mind, I am pretty sure that this guy is a no go for Great Crusade. What I don't know however is if there a different Consul that the Word Bearer should have during the Great Crusade?

Dark Channelling
This is the rule that you can give most Word Bearer squads where you took a d6 to see what upgrade the squad gets. This is because the power of the warp is bound to the individuals armour.

Burning Lore
This is an optional upgrade for some Word Bearer Consul which turns them into a Level 1 Psyker. This is because of warp-tainted incarnations inscribed upon their amour. 

Tainted Weapon
This is an optional upgrade for a Word Bearer with the option to take a power weapon. Even though it does not specifically say what these are, I would say a good guess would be that the weapon it tainted somehow by the warp.

Word Bearer Rite of War
All except one of the effects the Word Bearers get by following the Rite of War are not able to be used in Great Crusade. These include preferred enemy against loyalists, the ability to ally with Daemons and perils of the warp tests taken by the opposing force gain the instant death special rule.

Gal Vorbak Dark Brethren
I'm sure I don't need to mention that there is now way I can use these in Great Crusade.

High Chaplin Erebus
As well as Zealot and Burning Lore, Erebus also has the Marked by Dark Fates and Harbringer of Chaos. The Harbringer of Chaos just allows someone using Erebus the have access to Dark Channelling and may ally with Daemons. But with Marked by Dark Fates this means that where character casualties  and injury between battles is a factor, you may re-roll results for Erebus. To be honest, I have never really done a campaign where this would be applicable so I don't really know how beneficial this could be.

Kor Phaeron.
The only rules that Kor has which I believe can not be used is Burning Lore and Harbringer of Chaos

Lorgar for me is pretty simple. I think all should be ok with using Lorgar during the Great Crusade apart form the upgrade of transfiguring him. 

So as you can see, there is quite a lot of benefits that the Word Bearers have that you can not use if you chose to use them in the Great Crusade, however does taking these away make the Word Bearers at a disadvantage? And if so, what amendments can be made to make them a compatible force? Should we just lower some point values or give them alternative rules? 

Please share your thoughts below on the above questions as I am finding it quite hard to find a viable way to use Word Bearers during the Great Crusade.

Thank you and take care :-)


  1. That does seem a pretty difficult thing to rectify easily.
    I think Kor and Erebus would need to suffer a point decrease as the special rules are removed.
    I seem to remember that the Word Bearers were fanatically loyal to Lorgar a trait evident in their Gene Seed. I think most of the benefits would be Leadership related.
    Could try looking at some of the Leadership specific rules from the Warlord Traits (near objectives, in enemy deployment zone etc) and apply them? Could set it up so you could choose two of them to apply each turn to represent the Chaplain / Captain extolling his Legion why they should be carrying out their tasks in the Emperor's Glory.
    Otherwise maybe some Black Templar rules could be good?

  2. The legiones astartes (word bearers ) rule is pretty good! All the other stuff you list is completely optional, I play word bearers and never used any of it (except Lorgar transfigured)

    Just dont use those options. Erebus would just be a regular chaplain. Kor is a bit special so if you really wanted to include him he would need some house ruling.

  3. Drake has some good points there. Also don't forget that at the begining of First Heretic, prior to their censure by the Emperor via the Ultramarines, they were Fanatical about the divine nature of the Emperor himself. And lets be fair it's pointed to/alluded to the fact that this led to the creation of the Imperial Truth itself, so that which binds the weak after the events of Istvaan was actually created by the architects themselves. A rather nice cheeky duality I think.
    To that end you could look toward the Black Templars, also their Rite of War could actually be Prefered Enenmy Xenos?
    As for the Burning Lore instead of a Consul/Psyker whay not have a Consul/Chaplain. Instead of gaining a Psychic level he could gain zealot for him and any squad he joins or have some kind of zealot command radius? Or you could go back to the Prefered Enemy route and allow for a specific PE choice for him and his squad?
    Tainted weapon could become 'Sanctified weapon'? They wouldn't use 'Blessed' but you get the idea.
    Just a few nuggets of thought.