Following on from the Sisters of Battle White Dwarf Codex Part 1, this month’s WD has part 2, complete with force org slots, points values, and options!
From the top:
Celestine: 115 points! Starting a new trend of cheap-as-chips special characters, she’s a bargain.
Kyrinov and Jacobus: 90 points each! Also cheap as chips, Jacobus is worth it in particular as he lets you reroll the number of Faith Points you get per turn.
Canoness: At 65 points, she’s not really worth it compared to the special characters, unless you particularly want the AoF The Passion or to take a command squad.
Confessor: At 75 points, what’s the point when you could take Kyrinov or Jacobus?
Command Squad (no slot): Expensive, although 3+ armour plus Feel No Pain is okay they’re only T3 and there’s only 5 of them. Relentless multimeltas could be fun though. The biggest problem with these is that you need a canoness to take one, and she’s not very good.
Battle Conclave (no slot): needing a confessor or kyrnov or jacobus, this is the assasin/arco-flagellant/crusader unit. Like for Grey Knights, DCA are your best bet due to 3 attacks each (4 on the charge) at S4 I6, although crusaders for their 3++ can be useful too.
Strangely enough, the GW site lists Karamarov as a Witch Hunters HQ, and he is a Ordos Hereticus Inqisitor, but Sisters of Battle can’t take him. Probably because he’s already in the Grey Knights codex…
Celstians: overpriced, paying 3 extra points for WS4 and 2 attacks compared to normal battle sisters, and swapping the useful AoF Light of the Emperor (reroll 1s to hit/auto regroup) for AoF Hand of the Emperor (+1S and fearless for the assault phase), these aren’t very good.
Repentia: 17 points a pop, due to the 6++ for Shield of Faith, Feel No Pain (replacing their old 4+ armour), and the AoF Spirit of the Martyr which still lets them make 1 attack if they die, they’re probably okay so long as you let them borrow someone else’s rhino to deal with Rage (they can’t take a transport of their own). Problem is that they’re situational, but I can see them carving up tanks easily due to their evicerators…
Overall, the Elites are underwhelming, unless you’re particularly fond of combat Sisters of Battle who aren’t very good or girls who will die horribly but hit hard.
Battle Sisters: minimum squad size of 10 hurts, particulary since they’re 12 points each! Can only take 2 specials even if you bump the numbers to 20, making large squads somewhat pointless. Can now take heavy bolters for their heavy, so HB + flamer squads might make appearances as objective holders (along with the old HF/Flamer squads in rhinos or dual melta squads, although dominions do tank hunting better).
Nothing much to speak of here, but the fact that they’re the only troops choice (and there’s nothing that makes anything else troops) means you have to take 2 squads.
Seraphim: 15 points each, since they now shoot with both weapons instead of counting as twin-linked they’re pretty scary (particularly with the 20-point hand flamer upgrade or 30 points inferno pistol upgrade, of which 2 seraphim can take it – 4 hand flamer shots or 4 inferno pistol shots anyone?).
Dominion Squad: 13 points each (paying for the twin-linked AoF), and can take 2 specials per 5 models (so you need 10 for 4 special weapons), either 4 meltas for tank hunting or 4 flamers for infantry roasting in a rhino are good. Probably the best unit in the list, I’d rate them slightly higher than Seraphim due to their ability to take propper flamers and meltas for less points than the Seraphim’s hand flamers and inferno pistols, although you need 10 dominions vs 5 seraphim.
Both FA options are great, which unfortunately means you have to pick and choose…
Retributors: 12 points a pop, 5 point heavy bolters make these a no-brainer (due to the Rending AoF). I’d bump the squad out to 8 or so so you can soak some casualties and still shoot at full effectiveness, because you don’t want to lose the superior (as she gives +1 to AoF rolls).
Exorcist: Still with D6 shots a turn, they’re good, but rending heavy bolters from retributors make this less of a “must have” now.
Penitent Engine: Just why?!?! 85 points for AV11 opentopped raging dreadnought? No thanks, I can buy 5 retributors with 4 heavy bolters for that.
Rhino: 35 points, same as space marines, gets 6++. Okay.
Immolator: 65 points, loses the ability to scoot 12″ and fire twin-linked heavy flamers, they’re like normal space marine razorbacks now (so, crappier than blood angels or grey knights ones). Twin-linked HB with inferno bolts (rerolls to wound) are a free upgrade, so this or 15-point twinlinked multi-meltas are probably going to become the standard.
Laud Hailers: when a unit within 12″ successfully uses an AoF, roll a D6 on a 6 you get 1 Faith Point. Gimmick, only available (actually comes by default) on command squads or Kyrinov, but hey if you have one why not?
Condemnor Boltgun: combi-bolter with a 24″ S5 AP- assault 1 secondary weapon which causes perils of the warp if you wound a psyker. Mostly useless, since a) you can just allocate the wound to a non-psyker and b) it only works if the psyker gets hurt by it…
Neural Whip: power weapon, strikes at S8 vs non-vehicles against unmodified leadership. Only for the repentia sister superior, but interesting anyway.
It’s pretty underwhelming – particularly since basic sisters of battle went from 11 to 12 points, gaining a 6++ and frag and krak grenades but losing their most potent AoFs. From just looking at it, I’d say either rhino rush dominion spam or all-infantry retributor+seraphim spam are likely to be the “best” lists, since everything else in the army list is either too expensive or isn’t as good as dominions/seraphim/retributors or both.
I’ve heard it’s supposedly written for 6th ed 40k, which doesn’t help with the fact they kind of suck in 5th. Can Sisters of Battle please have a proper codex for the current edition any time soon please?