In Service to the Four-Armed Emperor: Planning the Genestealer Cults

Ever since they returned to the 40K universe, I’ve been fascinated by the forces of the Genestealer Cults. I just love the idea of this insidious force growing within the Imperium of Man. I also really like that, much like the Imperial Guard (Astra Thingy-Thingum now?), this is an army that actually shows humanity in the 41st millennium. Many of the cultists were originally industrial workers and are carrying mining equipment. It’s cool.

And, of course, the new book comes out this weekend. I wonder what will appear in this week’s 5 on Friday

The new book looks to be a lot of fun. From what I’ve read, a lot of the fiddlier units have been streamlined (always a plus) and the Crusade rules look good, which is also very important to me. This is because although we are looking to start a Path to Glory campaign for Age of Sigmar, the plan is to follow it up later in the year with a 40K Crusade campaign. I love my Necrons, but I like the idea of starting something new for such a campaign.

So, then, I’ve gone ahead and ordered the book and, realising that it would soon be discontinued, I also ordered a pair of Start Collecting Boxes:

As Start Collecting boxes go, this one is pretty solid, especially for the new book. It’s got 10 Neophytes, which are the basic troops of this army. The miniatures are fantastic and I expect the new crossfire rule to give them a whole new lease on life. There are also 5 Acolytes, which is another great kit, representing your slightly more elite options. I’m really looking forward to building these guys. Characterwise, there’s an Iconward, a hybrid who carried the banner of the cult. I can see myself potentially using one of these, but not two, making this the only miniature in the set that is perhaps a bit of a waste when buying multiple boxes. Finally, there’s a Ridgerunner; a fast vehicle that acts as a nice, mobile firing platform. Again, the interactions with the crossfire rule look pretty fun, here. This provides the basis of an army, with 20 Neophytes, 10 Acolytes, an Iconward and a couple of Ridgerunners.

A friend has also offered a decent price on the Genestealer Cults half of the recent Shadow Throne boxed set:

This is a handy set, as it contains another 10 Neophytes (will need loads of these…), the new Reductus Saboteur mini, and a Broodcoven set. The Broodcoven set contains several important characters for a Genestealer Cults army, namely the Patriarch, the Magus (and his familiars), and the Primus. All of these are important minis in the GSC army, and all of them look really great, too.

So, with these combined sets, my initial pool of miniatures will be:

  • 30 Neohpyte Hybrids
  • 10 Acolyte Hybrids
  • 2 Ridgerunners
  • 2 Iconwards
  • 1 Magus
  • 2 Familiars
  • 1 Reductus Saboteur
  • 1 Primus
  • 1 Patriarch

That’s a fair bit to get started with, innit? It’ll certainly do for a start.

The thing is, the GSC is a pretty model-heavy army, at least as far as my newbie eyes can see. Once I’ve made a dent in the above, I will need to grab some more minis to really get to grips with the army. Thankfully, Games Workshop has just revealed the new Combat Patrol boxed set for the Genestealer Cults:

This is a really good Combat Patrol box. Like, really good. Like, give me 2 of them, at least. The set contains:

  • 20 Neophyte Hybrids
  • 5 Acolyte Hybrids
  • 5 Aberrants
  • 1 Magus
  • 1 Goliath Rockgrinder

So, that’s a big block of Neophytes. I’m looking for 60 to 80 Neophytes, so with one of these boxes, that’s me at 50. With two, 70. Another 5 Acolytes are welcome as well, as I’d really like about 30 to 40 of them. With one of these boxes, that’s me at 15. With two, 20. The Aberrants are a unit that seems to have really benefitted from the new book, being both better in a general sense, and more streamlined in how they work. I also find the controversy around the sheer power of their mining equipment to be quite delicious. The tears of my fellow nerds sustain and empower me. The Magus is an interesting model. I already have a Magus from the Shadow Throne half. That said, what I will already have is the male Magus. He’s fine, but the female Magus is just a better miniature. I’m happy to have both in my collection. If I find myself with an extra one after buying two boxes, I’ve just seen a video on what to do with her…

Awesome, innit? Pete the Wargamer is a recent favourite of mine and his channel is really dangerous for me. So many cool ideas to try out!

Finally, the Goliath is a fantastic truck that looks like someone “Gaslanded up” a Tonka truck. Cannae beat that, pal! I’d love a Goliath transport or two in the army, but I also really want to let rip with the alternative build; the mighty Rockgrinder. Again, I just love the industrial look of it. The big truck, the front barrier, the grinders, the cutting weapons. Yeah, this is a truck that really means business and, whether it’s good or not in the actual game, I just want one.

So, clearly, I’m hyped for this project. The thing is, where does it fit into the plans for this year? Well, I’ve gone back and edited in a painting target. I’ve listed a lot of sets above, and there are a ton of models that I really want for this army. That said, I’m not wanting to do what I did with the Necrons and Gloomspite and buy a ton of models and feel like I’m drowning. As such, I think that the initial Start Collecting boxes and the Shadow Throne half will tide me over for some time. I’ll likely not pick much else up until I make some painting progress. Well, unless I end up needing some specific items for our club’s planned Crusade.

The Crusade will also be my impetus for really starting this army. I’m working away on Age of Sigmar stuff at the moment and I am quite happy with that. I’m a little worried that due to stock issues with the Pusgoyle Blightlords, my planned miniatures may not arrive in time, but I’ll work something out if I need to. The Genestealers can wait until my Path to Glory force is finished and the Crusade begins to loom on the calendar. Hyped, though!

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