Thursday, 24 November 2022

Liber Imperialis: Solar Auxilia review

Hi all. 

Everyone loves the Solar Auxilia, and we know they equate to around 1/3 of the Imperial Army. But what are they like in Horus Heresy 2nd edition? We have Gorey Crow to enlighten us!

Hooray the mere mortals are represented in the Horus Heresy again. Grab your adjustable wrench, tighten your Solar Pattern Void Armour, and present your las-rifle to the enemy in an aggressive stance.
All these guys have some form of Void Armour, a basic 4+ armour save with a few extra rules depending on which variant they’re wearing.
Formation and Rules:
The Solar Auxilia are primarily organised onto formations known as Tercios, collections of 3 squads to make up a Force Organisation Slot. Acting similar to 40k 7th edition Imperial Guard with their Platoons, you end up with a 0-1 command section, followed by a 1-3 choice of Veterans or Rifleman depending on the Force Slot.
“Tercio” is also a special rule, which allows all units from the same tercio to react together as long as they’re in formation “3 inches away”. This rule can also interact with Cohort Doctrines which we’ll get onto in a moment.
Most units in the book have the “close order” sub-type, meaning coherency is 1” which is sub-optimal if one’s opponent has templates at AP4 or better (another Solar Aux Army or Thanatars).
Thankfully templates are less apparent in this edition.
These means Solar Aux are blocky mass infantry formations keeping in close formation.
Not sure how this will play out on the tabletop, but its immensely fluffy, something I personally am a big fan of.
Cohort Doctrines (Rites of War):
Cohort Doctrines act very similar to Astartes Rites of War, if you want access to them, one must take a Legate Marshall (the squishy human Praetor/Centurion equivalent).
In most lists, the Legate Marshall will always be present, so its worth considering tailoring one’s list to maximise on the effects and keep within the limitations.
Some stand outs are as follows:
Solar Pattern Cohorts:
this is an elite formation that’ll have you playing “ride of the Valkyries” or “fortunate Son” as Veletaris veteran equivalents fly in on Arvus Lighters.
Veletarii are now troops choices with the all-important Line Sub-Type. All units that can take a dedicated transport can instead take an Arvus Lighter.
This army ends up with BS4 veterans with Volkite Charges and Axes with immense board control opportunities.
Player will need to be careful to ensure squads inserted deep into “no man’s land” are supported properly with Leadership buffs and close combat cover.
The biggest crime of this entire book however, is that the little Arvus has no weapons anymore which is immensely sad.
The limitation of this Doctrine is only one Armoured Tercio and one Artillery Tercio. So a maximum of 3 Leman Russes and 3 Artillery Tanks. Players will need to find a way to deal effectively with armour.
Ultrama pattern cohort:
Guilliman Fancied bigger formations for some reason. This Doctrine supersizes the rifleman sections (squads) to 1-6 in a single troop slot. Seeing as a Rifle Section clocks in at 10 Auxilia for 60pts, this is certainly possible (if one has infinite money).
If one wishes to give up what little unit coherency available to Solar Aux, Rifle Sections and Line Command Sections get +1BS if theyre in base-to-base contact with another model of the same unit.
Not sure how useful this is considering Las Rifles are Strength 3 Ap6, but again it is very fluffy.
Line Command and Rifle sections can not take dedicated transports under this Doctrine, but one isn’t taking this for vehicles.

Iron Pattern Cohort:
Gives some much-needed staying power with heavy hitting weapons in the form of Thallax and Castellax, sitting in the Elites Slot.
Thallax give some much-needed mobility, being able to fly around a total of 17” a turn with some punchy guns. They do lack weight of fire but what they do have has the potential to hit hard.
Castellax are tough and have access to the dreaded Darkfire Cannon, offering S7 AP2 goodness with 48” range. These guns will always get hot but its ranged AP2 which is less common this edition, so its probably worth the risk. Blind is a useless rule but funny when it does go off, Lance makes it easier to chip away at almost any vehicle.
Marshalls and Captains can take cortex controllers for 15pts each to become the Castellax’s shepherds.
The Legate Marshall gains Master of Automata which means he can join a unit with the Automata Type. Not sure why one would do this when Automata explode at S8, insta-killing one’s warlord but its cool I guess.
The limitation of this Doctrine is only one Armoured Tercio and one Artillery Tercio. So a maximum of 3 Leman Russes and 3 Artillery Tanks.
Not necessarily an issue considering how versatile Castellax are with Darkfires or Multi-Meltas. This Doctrine shouldn’t have an issue dealing with armour.
Legate Marshal is the Solar Aux’s overall commander in this book. he has the stat line of an Astartes Centurion with the toughness of a guardsman. Keep this guy away from anything with Strength 6, otherwise your super fancy commander will suffer critical existence failure through instant death. Thankfully he as a plethora of wargear options.
Stand outs are Artificer Armour, Iron Halo and cyber familiar. Giving your squishy human a 2+ 3++ mechanicum levels of protection (which is highly amusing as Space Marines don’t get this opportunity).
This chap has I4, so its feasible that you can outfit him for close combat. Not sure how useful that would be but it can be a painful surprise when this guy steps out of the crown and minces several Space Marines.
He does have access to a Paragon Blade and lots of power weapons but they’ll struggle to get their point back. A thunder hammer is 15pts which is pricey however 5 attacks base at WS5 with the survivability to make it through I1? It could prove a decent enough threat to give opponents pause and reconsider charging your HQ.
The reason you take this chap is for his Ld10, a fellow in his command squad can take a command vox which broadcasts his bravery across the entire battlefield. As long as a squad has a Vox Interlock (an auto upgrade in my opinion) the entire army is now Ld10.
Tactical Command Tercio
Auxiliar Tactical Command Section (1):
A more tradition command squad containing one Captain and 5 friends (increasing to 10 for 12pts per friend) all with WS and BS4.
They come stock with las Rifles, but they can take all sorts of special weapons: both flavours of Combi-Bolter, Plasma and Melta guns.
Companions toting Plasma guns is this armies only readily available source of ranged AP that isn’t mounted to a vehicle. It’ll double the squads cost and the gets hot will instant death the wielder, but  if theyre safely tucked away in a transport, there’s a chance they’ll get one round of shooting off. Whatever they hit, will probably end up hurting.
The Captain can be upgraded to an Auxilia Marshal with WS5 and 4 attacks base at I4. Regular power weapons at initiative are probably better on this squad (no access to armour save improvements) so a power maul could work nicely here to clobber any Tactical Squad Sgt who’s gotten too big for his boots.
Interestingly enough, any model can take a power weapon and blast pistol and power weapon for 10pts.
The blast pistol is S6 AP4 pistol 2, which is good against other humans or Thallax/Vorax of all things, only 9” range though so keep that in mind.
A squad of 5 or 10 with blast pistols and power mauls could cause some serious concern for Marines with WS4 as this squad would chuck out 3 attacks per companion (4 on the charge) and 4 attacks (5 on the charge from the captain. This come to 16 attacks for a 5 man squad or 31 attacks from a max size squad. That would come to 265pts for a squad that needs to be in close combat and Solar Aux don’t have a delivery system… looks fun but be prepared if you go for this.
Other upgrades of note; The Cohort Vexilla is a good option, while the bearer is alive the squad gets “line” so it can score objectives and gives a 6” Ld9 aura. A nice combination with the ranged special weapons.
A command vox to blast out Ld 9 just in case the Legate Marshall gets taken down.
Aurgury Scanner is worth consideration if the squad is equipped with the more powerful special weapons.
Companion Section (0-2):
You can take entire squads of friends from the Tactical Command Section.
Companions are WS and BS4, W2 and I4 with the Adjutant being WS5. Don’t be fooled by the potential close combat power, yes they’ll be able to give tactical marines and the like a run for their money, but Solar Aux have no assault transports. Foot slogging is an option but these guys are only T3 with 4+ sv. Those 2W don’t count for much as there’s so many weapons in the Astartes arsenal that can instant death an Auxilia.
Equip these guys with the usual selection of Special Weapons; volkite chargers, combi-weapons, grenade launchers, plasma and melta guns.
Plasma guns are a good source of ranged AP2, a max size squad would be pumping out 20 shots, you can take 2 of these squads per HQ slot. Each squad would cost 220pts with this load out but needs must, Las Rifles will only do so much.
Consider a Vox interlock as these guys can use the Ld 10 from the legate Marshal’s squad, you did take a Legate Marshall in a command squad with a command vox right?

Auxilia Veletaris Tercio
1-1 Veletaris Command Section
1-3 Veletaris Storm Section
1-1 Veletaris Vanguard Section
Veletaris Command Section:
More WS and BS4 goodness, although that’s where the usefulness of this squad ends.
For 4 veletarii and a First Prime, its 90pts. The Storm Section is 90pts for 10 Veletarii.
Theres a premium on the First Prime for his Ld 8, nothing really to write home about.
The stats of this squad aren’t really worth using it for leadership buffs or close combat attacks.
Sadly the Storm Sections does what this squad does, but better.
Veletaris Storm Section:
Now we’re on to something. 9 Veletarii and a Prime for 90pts, BS4 and volkite chargers.
Up to 10 additional veletarii can be taken for 8pts each making these guys very cheap.
Its working maximising the squad for 40 volkite shots, shoving them in a basic Dracosan (theyre heavy so can’t run) and unleashing the Choom on any squad unfortunate to be close enough.
Volkite Chargers aren’t all that impressive by themselves apart from having the Deflagrate rule which is amazing when it works. But when there’s 20 of them? That has the potential to hurt a lot of targets through weight of fire alone, all for the price of 170pts without a transport.
I’d highly recommend taking a Vox Interlock, allowing this squad to use the Leadership of any squad who has a Command Vox. This makes up for this squads sub-optimal Ld of 7 or 6 if the Prime has perished.
The Storm Axe, this weapon is a little confusing. Its on a squishy human frame that only gets one attack base. However it ends up being S5, AP2 with unwieldy and Murderous Stike (6+) for 5pts a piece.
A 10 Veletarii squad each with axes ends up at 140pts. I really can not tell if this is work it or not.
Theres a chance that the squad could chop up some Terminators and get lucky with the odd murderous strike roll. But if the squad didn’t get the charge off, theres only 11 attacks. Maybe one dead terminator, two or three if one is really lucky. However this squad will melt from the retaliation as a 4+ armour save is not going to save much.
Tactical Squads with chainswords, Despoilers or Assault Marines could bury this squad through weight of attacks alone before the tiny humas get to swing their axes at Initiative 1.
Might be worth taking one of these squads to see how they perform and select targets very carefully.
Vanguard Section:
The standard squad has rotor cannons, could be useful considering the sheer weight of fire, pinning and shell shock (1). 40 shots, or 80 for the max size squad for 170pts sounds like a fun idea, just make sure to pack enough dice. However having experienced these weapons struggle to take out Tech Thralls, might be worth taking the free upgrade…HEAVY FLAMERS!!! its time to turn the up the heat and turn one’s enemies (and ourselves) into well done steak. S5 AP4 Assault 1.
10 Veletarii as standard, 8pts per additional with a heavy flamer. Pop them in a dracosan and roll up the board to get them into cooking range.
Now be very careful with positioning. H.Flamers ignore the 4+ armour save these guys have so friendly fire has the real opportunity to do more damage to the squad than whatever they’re firing at. Pop a Medicae at the back of the squad for a 6+ Feel No Pain just in case the worst happens.
The Vaguard has some good options overall, take the rotor cannons for safer but more unreliable damage or H/Flamers for higher strength and AP, auto hitting but with the ability to really harm the Auxilia wielding them.
Vox Interlock, need I say more?
1-1 Medicae Section:
15pts per medicae up to 8 in this slot.
Nothing all that special, keep them basic and supply 6+ FNP to whatever squad they’re attached to.
Note that these guys must be deployed attached to whatever unit they’re supporting and they can’t leave, nor can they join an independent character. However an independent character can join a squad a medicae is already attached to.
The nice side of this limitation is one’s opponent can not claim Victory Points for removing a medicae as a casualty.

Surgeon-Primus Aevos Jovan:
The mad Doc is back and he’s more disturbing than ever.
A basic Tech Thrall stat line with an amazing WS and BS of 2 but he has Ld9 which is nice.
His Auto-Gurney is what provides his healing ability with varying levels of healing depending on how good you roll.
Once per turn when a friendly model within 12” is to be removed as a casualty, roll a dice:
2 Bloody masterpiece: they model is alive with one wound, gains +1 S and attacks but then dies the next player turn
2-5 Mundane Procedure; model remains on one wound
6     Inspired Restoration; model regains all wounds lost
This guy is here to keep multi wound models alive, with some very fluffy and useful abilities. I know I’ll be hoping for Bloody Masterpiece most of the time, especially if it manages to go off near some Ogryns.
The only issue is he has a -1 Ld modifier within 12”to any model, which is the range of his healing ability.
He’s not likely to get shot at though, being a “low-priority target”, opponents can shoot him unless they’re within 12”, of Jovan’s unit makes a shot.
Charonite Ogryns:
Big Ol’ Chonky Bois, totting weapons not out of place in the power tools isle of a hardware shop, Strength and Toughness 5, 3 Wounds, 4 Attacks and a mediocre Leadership of 6 BUT the sad leadership does not matter too much as they can’t be pinned due to the Monstrous and they have Death Frenzy (more on that in a moment).
These guys have more special rules than wargear options…they have no wargear options which is a shame, I suppose GW sees these guys as Solar Aux do, Expendable.
Standard squad size of 3 increasing up to 9 for 40pts per Ogryn.
They have FNP 5+, Hammer of Wrath (2), Rage (2), Death Frenzy and Bitter Duty and Bulky (4) which are all very interesting together.
A few S7 auto hits on the charge are nice, Rage (2) is certainly useful as long as you get the charge off.
The Charonite Claws are S7 AP3 with rending (6+). So on the charge these guys would pump out 5 attacks each at Strength 9 AP3 with rending but only at initiative 2 which has potential against non-legion specific unit.
Lets face it, a few Ogryns are going to perish but that’s okay. Thanks to Death Frenzy these guys can stay in the fight but it comes at a cost. Should these guys fail a morale test, they instead pass it but the controlling player must remove one model. The remaining Ogryns are enraged by this so they each gain 1 additional attack.
This lends the Ogryns to run in large size squads to capitalize on the Death Frenzy rule. Plus as their weapons are AP3 and rending, weight of attacks is needed to get them to work against heavier targets.
This squad feels very much like an expendable shock unit. Point them at something, pray they get there and watch them die and they cut down whatever their intended target it, I’m very interested to see how these chaps perform on the board.

Auxilia Infantry Tercio
1-1 Line command section
1-3 Rifle Section
Line Command Section:
Honestly, don’t bother taking this squad unless you run out of literally every other option. The “Auxilia Veterans” are WS and BS3 and equipped with las rifles. They get two attacks but no ability to take close combat weapons. The troop master is WS and BS 4 with 2 wounds. There are options to take power weapons and the like but it doesn’t synergise well with the rest of the squad.
Its 65pts for 5, or its 60pts for the Rifle Section containing 10 Auxilia (which is up next).
This squad isn’t even work taking for the leadership as its only 7 on the Sgt.
Save the points for literally anything else.
Rifle Section:
the reason one has a Solar Auxilia Army. Its 60pts for 10 Auxilia, with the option to take an additional 10 at 5pts each. Meaning that a max sized squad is 110pts without upgrades.
You can take 3 of these per troop slot (you literally can’t take anything else that takes up a slot in the Troops Section) meaning 18 squads in total, if they all have 20 auxilia each that’s 360 Auxilia ready to lay down withering las fire in the name of the emperor. 720 shots at 30” S3 AP6, its not the strongest weapon out there, but that weight of fire is utterly bonkers. It’ll be 1980pts and £1566 at time of writing...that may be a small hindrance but think of the glory.
Like every squad, I’d recommend a vox interlock. You don’t want a 20 strong squad running away so considering the Legate Marshal is still alive, this squad is Ld10 which is brilliant.
An auxilia banner will synergise well here aswell as the squad will only fall back 6” if they fail a morale check, combined with Ld10, they wont be falling back very far and its easy to rally if they do/
I’d take bayonets into consideration, it’s a 1pt upgrade per model. which will make wounding marines a little bit easier should they get charged and overwatch doesn’t work.
Don’t expect these guys to win games by themselves. Theyre only Toughness 3 with a 4+ armour save. Theres so much in the Astartes arsenal which can take these guys down without breaking a sweat. Stick to cover and make use of the shrouded reaction when possible.

Dracosan Armoured Transport:
The best armoured vehicle in heresy (in my biased opinion).
For 175pts, you get a front AV13, 5 Hull Points transport with a capacity of 22 models and a hull mounted Gravis Lascannon. It has the Reinforced unit type which is useful for not having the crew or occupants stunned or shaken.
The mighty Flare Shield can be purchased for 25pts, I’d definitely recommend this having seen unflared shielded spartans get rinsed without these things, plus its good to make the most of this vehicles 5HP’s. the more shots that can be pushed down to glances the better.
Take at least one hunter killer missile so the lascannon doesn’t get destroyed straight away and the vehicle is unable to defend itself.
The hull mounted lascannon can be replaced with a Demolisher cannon for 50pts!!! This is not worth it especially as the Demo cannon lost AP2 and Large blast. Keep this vehicle cheap, it’s a transport at the end of the day and BS3 will only get you so far no matter what weapon is equipped.
Keep dismounted infantry close by, even more so if you’ve got veletarii. It’s a viable tactic to use the withdraw tactic embark into a transport to get away from a particular nasty melee squad.
This could save the squad and end up giving pause to you opponent as to where they’ll direct their charge, might even put the unit out of charge range.
Aurox Transport:
Solar Aux’s Rhino. 30 points nets a front and side AV11, 3 hull points and a transport capacity of 10 and a very nice movement speed of 15.
This thing seems to be designed for zipping squads of veletarii up the battlefield to get them into the best position to make the most of their volkites, flamers or rotor cannons.
Make use of smoke grenades to ensure the little transport doesn’t get destroyed too soon.
Searchlights can be purchased for 5pts, something worth buying as night fighting seems to be quite common. Have the Aurox light up the target, have the dismounts take the shot.
Theres the option to take a pintle mounted H.Stubber, Multi-laser or H.Flamer.
All are anti-infantry weapons with middling weight of fire and shocking AP, not necessary to take unless you have a few points laying around for upgrades.

 Arvus Lighter:
an adorable shuttle designed to fly 12 models onto an objective then explode in a fireball.
It has front and side AV of 11 with 2 Hull points.
Don’t expect this to do much once troops have dismounted, it has no weapons at all, no options to take weapons. The only use it has is maybe using its search lights to illuminate targets for unit with weapons to shoot at.
Ramming is another option? The little Arvus can do much else so why not try and annoy your opponent. When this thing dies, theres a chance that the explosion could take out some models.
Its comes in at 75pts, which is pricey for a very light transport but they could provide the mobility needed to capture objectives, for an army that is otherwise quite slow.
Primaris Lightning:
Everyone’s favourite little flier. 
As above but a bit tougher and boxier lol. 
Heavy Support
Auxilia Armoured Tercio:
1-1 Armoured Command Section
1-3 Leman Russ Strike/Assault Squadrons
Armoured Command Section:
One Leman Russ Command Tank with the all important BS4, front AV14, side AV13 and 4 Hull Points. The Leman Russ continues to be a hard as nails vehicle (as long as you approach from the front/sides).
it comes with a battlecannon as standard and hull mounted Heavy Bolter.
The battle cannon is locked in, can’t replace this weapon which is a shame as its garbage now. AP4 with 3” blast is not going to hurt anyone unless you come up against someone who plays mechanicum, even then it won’t instant death anything.
The hull mounted H.Bolter can be swapped out for a Lascannon, H.Flamer, Multi Laser or autocannon. All very nice but don’t bother because…
The reason this guy exists is for the Cognis Signum (20pt option) which give +1BS to a unit this tank is attached to. Now considering the command tank MUST be attached to a Leman Russ Squadron and can not leave, you might aswell give up shooting the sad battle cannon and let the regular Leman Russes do the heavy lifting as they can take weapons which aren’t the battle cannon.
Surprisingly the Command Tank can be fitted with a flare shield, which makes this as tough as a Warlord titan in the front arc which is hilarious.
Some reading will be required as to how this interacts with the standard Leman Russes that can’t take Flare Shields, it is a bit of a head scratcher for me but could be worth it just to see the look on your opponent’s face.
Leman Russ Strike Squadron:
One Leman Russ Tank for 150pts, equipped with a battlecannon (that we don’t talk about) and hull mounted H.Bolter.
Can include up to 2 additional Russes for a nice discounted 135pts.
Now there are several options here for turret options that every tank in the squadron must take, no mixing, only matching: Gravis Lascannon (free), Gravis Autocannon (free) and Vanquisher Cannon with a Coaxial Autocannon for 5pts.
Leave the Autocannon, they only have 3 shots which are twin linked. Not worth it when the Vanquisher cannon gets the same number of shots with its Coaxial just without twin linked.
So the viable options are Lascannons and the Vanquisher.
The Lascannons have 2 shots with sunder, not so good at BS3 but if you have a command tank attached that happens to have a Cognis Signum, its suddenly okay. What ever does hit will most likely do some damage now Lascannons have SUNDER.
The vanquisher cannon is now a very good option, at BS3 its alright. Fire off the Coaxial autocannon first which will give rerolls to hit if you miss (which will happen often), if the command tank is around you now have a 155pt tank hitting on 3’s with rerolls (as long as auto cannon hits) with two shots at S9 AP2, sunder and Brutal (2) which is an amazing collection of stats/rules for a 5pt upgrade.
For the Leman Russ Strike Squadron, its hard to see a reason not to take the Vanquisher. it’ll give all but the heaviest of vehicles some trouble, it’ll dish out a decent amount of wounds to the like of Automata/Dreadnaughts and can mop up terminator equivalents in a pinch too although there are better targets as I just covered.
There are a few hull mounted weapon options aswell, standouts are another autocannon or a Lascannon for even more anti armour/heavy unit hunting.
For some reason the Strike Squadron has outflank. While not as powerful in this edition as one’s opponent knows where the outflanking unit will appear, it can still be useful to park a heavy hitting up the side of the battlefield to take shots are some side armour/exposed units. Its something to keep in mind as it gives options, especially if it you’re up against a slow moving opponent.
Leman Russ Assault Squadron:
The Strike Squadron’s chonkier brother. Loses outflank and 2” of movement from 12 to 10 along with a price hike to 200pts (185pts for 2 additional Russes).
The pay off is this Squadron gains Reinforced which is immensely useful for a shooting unit as it ignores crew shaken/stunned.
Comes stock with a Demolisher cannon which is now 24” range (which is a bit short) S12 AP3, 3” blast with Rending and Brutal (3).
Not as useful for deleting terminator equivalents but can obliterate the Mechanicum’s castellax (which are proving to be as annoying as ever) along with their infantry and even Magos characters.
Instant death only does D3 wounds per wound suffered, well the Demo cannon has brutal 3. The castellax would have to pass 3 5++ invulns or suffer D3 wounds per failed save. This is a sure-fire way of chewing through them. Plus there’s the S8 explosion when a castellax dies too.
This weapon is mainly for busting vehicles or automata, can help against heavy infantry if you don’t mind fishing for rends on the wound roll.
The Demo cannon can be swapped out for the Executional Plasma Cannon of the Volkite Macro-saker.
The hull mounted autocannon synergises well with the Plasma cannon and the multi laser with the Volkite.
The Plasma Cannon clocks in at S7 AP4 Blast 5” rending 4+ which is much better than breaching.
This allows for a bit more room for penetrating medium vehicles, as rending adds D3 to the penetration roll.
It won’t be dishing out Instant death all that often but theres the potential to have 3 Russes here so terminator equivalents will still struggle to deal with all the 5” blasts coming their way.
The Volkite Macro-Saker (or Choom gun) is S6 AP5 heavy 8 with the wonderful deflagrate rule, this weapon relies on weight of fire to overwhelm targets and the additional wounds caused when a dying model goes pop.
Its probably worth stocking up on multi-lasers with this weapon option. It’s a free hull mounted option and a 10pts pintle upgrade. Each Russ will be spewing forth 8 Volkite S6 shots and 6 S6 Multi-laser shots. Due to the same weapon Strength and sort of similar range, they’ll be engaging similar targets. Maximum efficiency.
Having seen what volkites are capable of in that 1 in 10 chance of deleting a squad in one go, its worth considering, especially if you like chucking loads of dice and yelling “choom” as a target erupts in fire.
Auxilia Artillery Tercio:
1-1 Artillery Command Squad
1-3 Rapier or Tarantula Batteries
Command Squad:
These guys only exist to take a Cognis Signum and shove them in a Tarantula Battery, as explained below.
Tarantula Batteries:
Annoying stationary area denial units (although they can’t deny objectives).
For 60pts you get 3 sentries, with stats of BS2, Toughness 4, 3+ armour save platform with two heavy bolters which can be upgraded to Two Lascannons or a Hyperios Missile Launcher.
BS2 is not going to get this unit very far with the Lascannon, each sentry will cost 40pts a model at that point.
Stick with the heavy bolters as a savvy opponent will take advantage of the Sentry Protocols (can only target the closes unit), said unit will more than likely be cheap/expendable.
Having 9 sentries down will pump out 72 H.Bolter shots, only at BS2 but its still a lot of firepower.
Now things start to change if the Artillery Command Squad is included with a cognis signum, this bumps the Sentries to BS3 which massively increases the chance to hit, at this point it may be worth taking the Lascannons as 18 Strength 9 shots is impressive.
Due to the way slots worth now and making most of the command squad, take a maximum sized squad (costing 360pts).
Things to keep in mind, they have to target the closest visible enemy unit, once the sentries are deployed they can’t move, if theyre charged and lose combat they automatically fail the initiative check and are destroyed.
These are a great area denial unit, keep them standard, shove a command squad in there and enjoy a ludicrous amount of shots.
Rapier Battery:
First things first, don’t bother with the multi lasers.
Spend the points to take either the Laser Destroyer if you want to end light and medium armoured vehicles with ease.
Or my personal favourite option, the Quad Launcher (20pts) things to start to get a bit pricey with the shell upgrades but the shatter shell (20pts) are absolutely worth it. 4 shots at Strength 8, AP4 with Sunder will shred medium armoured vehicles by simply glancing them to death.
the other shells do have a use in this edition it seems.
The Incendiary are bolter shots but will 5” blast, pinning and shred.
The Splinter shells are an all or nothing ammo type. Strength 2, AP4, barrage, 5” blast, pinning, shell shock (1) and rending 6+. Fire this at a tightly packed unit and pray for a few 6’s, the shell shock should then help with pinning the target unit.
It may be tempting to load up with all the ammo types but that will get expensive very quickly. Take advantage of having several units per slot and specialise each squad into anti-armour and anti-infantry.
These guys are slow, 4” and they can’t run or react. Make sure theyre screened by infantry which is viable as each squad will only be moving 3” at a time if they want to fire their Las Rifles.
Malcador Heavy Tank:
Can be taken in squadrons of 3. A “heavy” tank with AV13 on the front and sides with 5 HPs.
Please replace the battlecannon, this vehicle has no business carrying a weapon that cant deal with armour or infantry.
The options are Gravis Lascannon or Vanquisher Cannon both for 10pts. There’s little reason not to take the Vanquisher. Its has the same strength, AP and sunder at the lascannon, but it has more range and Brutal 2.
The hull mounted heavy bolter can be exchanged for an autocannon (not bad), multi laser (not great when the autocannon is free), Heavy Flamer (why?), a lascannon for 10pts (not bad, synergises well with the main armament but will miss 90% of the time) or a Demolisher Cannon for 50pts!!! (really good for armour busting and killing automata but its very expensive in points.
The side mounted Heavy Bolters can be exchanged for the same options as the hull mounted except the demo cannon.
Lascannons against synergise well but one of them will always be out of arc to use, auto cannons are free and have some weight of fire to make up for the following USR.
Independent Fire Control means that weapons out of arc or chosen not to fire at the primary target, can shoot at a different one but at -1BS. That is why the side lascannons aren’t the best options at they’ll be hitting on 5’s.
Hilariously this thing can take a flare shield, I highly recommend this to make the most of the 5HPs. Having the shield will make glances or null hits happen more often which is important on a vehicle that relies on more HPs than heavy armour.
Auxilia Armoured Battery:
Oh how the mighty have fallen. 200pts nets you a front AV13, side AV 12, 4 HP bombard chassis at BS4 which is actually quite nice, however that’s where the praise ends.
Artillery really got a kick in the shins, the Earth shaker is AP4 and the medusa cannon is AP4 with rending 6+. This is not worth the 200pt chassis is based on, especially when Leman Russes and Malcadors can hunt armour and the quad cannon is a better artillery piece (because its cheaper)
If youre up against another Solar Aux army then go wild, these are great weapons as they’ll instant death and ignore most of the army’s armour saves.
Against everything else, it doesn’t have the AP or high enough strength to do reliable damage on such a pricey chassis, which is such a shame as artillery was quite cool in the last edition.
Valdor Tank Destroyer:
As of the Aiuxilia needed more help dealing with armour, the standard Malcador chassis but with a centreline Neurton beam laser. Strength 10 AP 1 Concussive, shock pulse and Ordanance 2, so one shot will always miss as the tank is BS3.
Keep this cheap as its going to be attracting a lot of attention due to its scary gun and respectable high speed. Slap on a flare shield because theyre so influential in handling what weapons can glance/pen.
Cyclops Demolition Vehicle:
Radio controlled little death boxes supported by one handler for 35pts, its 35pts per additional cyclops and handler.
These things are slow, 5” and no running. Theyre Toughness 5, 2 Wounds with 3+ armour save which is respectable.
This unit’s gimmick is in the assault phase. If these things manage to trundle their way across the battlefield not being shot at, the controlling player remembers to use the “detcon unit” properly so the Cyclops may charge, not getting shot to pieces in overwatch, not getting smashed in the assault phase, then these guys will auto inflict one hit at Initiative 1, Strength 10, AP1, armourbane, Instant Death and Brutal (2).
This is an eye watering number of high-powered special rules/stats as long as the little cyclops is able to make it through the above issues and the target limitation of vehicles, dreadnoughts, automata and buildings.
There are transport options. One cyclops and handler can be shoved into an aurox, arvus or dracosan. These transports must form a unit and go around as such, they can’t split up voluntarily.
Problem with Solar Aux vehicles is they’re not assault verhicles, so when the cyclops dismount they can’t charge.
The little Aurox is a stand out option as its so cheap (pts wise), fast and small.

Lords of War
Malcador Infernus Squadron:
Not really a squadron as you can only take one per slot but that doesn’t matter as you’ll never take this, ever, really its terrible.
It’s the standard Malcador chassis, no additional benefits. Its 300pts! To carry round the Inferno gun which is Hellstorm (the massive template) Strength 8, AP 4, Torrent 9”, breaching 6+. This is bad, flat out bad.
AP4 and breaching 6+ is quite honestly insulting especially as the inferno gun was a commendable weapon in HH1.
You are not going to waste a lord of war slot on a weapon that can not reliably deal with Space marine tactical squads.
GW really dropped the ball with the Infernus, do not take this, you’ll just be disappointed.
This is a super heavy tank which has less armour on the front than a Leman russ and no way of dishing out AP2 and its BS3. Should say it all really.

Thanks to Games Workshop for the review sample. 

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