Sisters of Battle White Dwarf Codex Part 1

All pictures in this post from www.games-workshop.com, used without permission

So the Sisters of Battle get Part 1 of their new “Codex” in this month’s White Dwarf. This is an official codex, in the same vein as the old Blood Angels WD Codex.

The first part contains army list entries but no points values or options for them – just special rules, basic equipment, and statlines. So, without further ado, here’s my review and comments:

Army Special Rules:

Faith Points: D6 per game turn, and they only work on your turn, and they can’t be saved. This is IMO a bad move, as it provides no scaling for points values or number of units.

Acts of Faith: 1 Faith Point to “cast”, cast on a 5+ (+1 if you have a unit champion, +1 for most independent charadcters – not cummulative, +1 if you’ve taken a casualty). No word on whether you can attempt a single Act of Faith more than once a turn if you fluff it the first time. Independent character AoF affect the unit, and unit AoF affect attached indepentdent characters. Each unit gets their own, different, AoF.

Shield of Faith: Everything that’s sisters of battle (and not, say, arcoflagellants) gets a 6+ invunerable. Yes, this includes the tanks.

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Cannonesses

Same as before, remember no word on options in this half of the codex. AoF is “The Passion”, +1 initiatve and preferred enemy. (underwhelming) yay.

Command Squad

Now a seperate unit (compared to before when they were just special celestians), their AoF is “Endless Crusade”, giving them relentless and move through cover. (again underwhelming) yay, although depending on weapon selection relentless could be good. Can apparently get a Sister Hospitaller (I’m guessing which will given them Feel No Pain) and Sister Dialogus (with a laud hailer – banner analoge maybe?)

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Priests

Two flavours – 1 wound Preachers and beefed WS, BS, Ld and 3-wound Confessors (who give +1 to AoF whereas the preachers don’t). Same as before, re-roll hits on the turn they charge. Nothing else really special until we see the equipment lists. Do get the 6+ invulnerable, although they have rosariuses for 4+ invulnerables anyway. 1 wound preachers look useless unless they’re combined with…

Battle Conclaves

The slimmed-down witchhunters version of Henchman Squads from Grey Knights, you only get Arco-flagellants, Crusaders, and Death Cult Assassins. They look exactly the same as the Grey Knight versions. Death Cult Assassins with re-rolls on the turn they charge (Priest) anyone? Warning: no 6+ invulnerable, although Crusaders and DCAs don’t need it (they have 3+ and 5+ invulnerables already).

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Repentia

Ah, these old completely useless gals. They no longer have their 4+ armour save, but now get Feel No Pain, Fleet, Rage, and “Spirit of the Martyr” as their AoF – any which die still get 1 attack at the end of the combat. 2 Attacks each base tho, and they’ve still all got evicerators. Rage is a big downside, although chucking these in a rhino (during the game, because I’m predicting they can’t take one) would help.

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Penitent Engine

Same as before I think, Rage, ignores shaken + stunned, gets an extra attack for each one it inflicts (after saves) in combat (doesn’t carry on, and with D6+1 base attacks unreliable anyway). Two heavy flamers sounds fun though. Gets the 6+ invulnerable.

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Finally, Battle Sisters

Same stats as before, AoF is “Light of the Emperor” – movement phase is regroups them automatically, shooting/assault they reroll 1s to hit. (underwhelming) yay (again).

Celestians

WS4, 2A sisters, but since they’re only I3…

AoF is +1 strength and Fearless in assault phase. (massively underwhelming) yay.

Dominion Squads

Scouts!

Also, “Holy Fusillade” as their AoF, making their shooting weapons twin linked. Ouch (4 twin-linked meltaguns or flamers anyone?).

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Seraphim

Still have hit and run, get to reroll AoF and their 6+ invulnerable. Any with two pistols can fire both in the shooting phase (but have the note that this means they can’t fire any other weapon that turn – makes me wonder why they had to make that clarification). AoF is “The Emperor’s Deliverance” – reroll failed to wound rolls for shooting (only shooting).

Retributors

RENDING for their AoF (shooting only). 12 rending heavy bolter shots?

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Tanks

Same as before – although no word on wether the Exorcist Missile Launcher will change stats or not. All the tanks get the 6+ invulnerable. The Immolator looses its fire points though.

Special Characters

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Arch Confessor Kyrinov. His power mace is a powerweapon with the thunderhammer special rule (reduces enemy which takes an unsaved wound to I1 for the next player turn). 6″ Fearless bubble.

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Uriah Jacobus, Protector of the Faith. Stubborn, reroll number of faith points, S4 AP4 shotgun, everyone in his unit gets +1 attack and feel no pain (coz of the banner).

And finally…

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Saint Celestine. STILL doesn’t have hit-and-run so she gimps the Seraphim she’s running around with. Still has a 2+/4+, and the power weapon that wounds on a 4+ (but isn’t poisoned) and shoots like a heavy flamer.

In Summary,

Looks to be basically the same stuff, but less Acts of Faith and less powerful Acts of Faith. Without points values and knowing what’s troops it’s a bit hard to judge right now, but if stuff stays about the same points they might be a tad too expensive. However, it looks much easier to play with and against, because there’s a lot less bookkeeping for AoF than there used to be.

Must have units are probably going to be Dominion Squads and Retributors due to their twin-linked and rending Acts of Faith, and I’m guessing most of the D6 Acts of Faith per turn are going to be used on them. Notable is the lack of any Acts of Faith which make anything more survivable – they’re all geared around making stuff better at killing things. Standard battle sisters are probably going to end up being used like tactical marines – either bunker down and shoot a heavy, or rhino up and nab objectives (with the odd rapid fire boltering thrown in).

2 thoughts on “Sisters of Battle White Dwarf Codex Part 1

  1. Hrm, got a few things wrong or need to add to some:
    – Retributor’s AoF (rending) is essentially the same as the old one (can’t remember the name) which gave you AP1 on a 6 (can’t remember if it’s to hit or to wound). Anyway, provided they get a points drop, they’ll still be okay.
    – Celestine HAD hit and run, and now doesn’t. He resurrection is much better now (similar to the Grey Knights Terminator Justicar uprade character, on a 4+ on subsequent turns) and she turns up with D3 instead of only 1 wound.

    A lot seems to be dependent upon unit upgrades and points costs, so tune in next month I guess 🙂

  2. Pingback: Sisters of Battle White Dwarf Codex Part 2 | Luke's Short Gaming Blog

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