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Monday, September 05, 2011

EDITORIAL - Grey Knights • Tough Nut to Crack

I have been seeing some complaints about the power level of Grey Knights recently. When I first saw the leaked version of the codex I couldn't believe it - Grey Knights looked like an army that just couldn't lose. I didn't like the codex and felt just like those who are complaining now. I was just getting into the new dark eldar at the time. I can't honestly remember what made me change my mind but I think it had something to do with the ability to field an entire army of psychic terminators. So I studied the codex in depth when it was released and decided to go ahead and build an army. It's been a lot of fun and I think I've only lost four to five games so far. Winning is almost always fun but the strong tactics the army has at it's disposal is the main reason why I enjoy playing the army plus this is my second fifth edition army that is centered around shooting - I'll cover that aspect in more detail below.

The other fifth edition armies I've played so far are Khornate daemons, Blood Angels and Dark Eldar. I also toyed around with Chaos Space Marines (I consider them a fifth edition army even though the codex was released towards the end of fourth edition - daemon princes have the Eternal Warrior USR for example) but I could never really get into that codex having played lots of different armies from the previous codex... Pretty much each of the four cults - that is, Emperor's Children, Deathguard, World Eaters and Thousand Sons.

Are Grey Knights really that overpowered? Imperial Guard and Space Wolves are also considered by many to be quite broken. I still have a tough time versus good Imperial Guard players - it's kind of a ridiculous codex but we just have to deal with it. Bitching and moaning is not going to ever make you a better player. I do think Grey Knights and Imperial Guard are probably the two most powerful armies followed closely by Space Wolves and Deathwing then finally Blood Angels to close out the top tier. This is how I'd rank the top tier:

Grey Knights
Imperial Guard
Space Wolves
Blood Angels

As I said above Grey Knights and Dark Eldar are the two armies I've played in fifth edition that have a lot of shooting going on. I like Grey Knights better in this regard because they are much more durable (obviously). It's nice to play an army that can go toe to toe with Imperial Guard or missile spam Space Wolves.

I had been heavily playing Blood Angels for many years until I finally burnt out on the army and needed a change of pace. I played them throughout 3rd edition then into fourth edition with the PDF codex and continued to follow them with the release of their new fifth edition codex. The burn out came at the Adepticon championship this year - my dice went belly up on me and I had been preparing for that tournament for the better part of a year... Right now I still have no desire to play them but I'm sure I'll come back to my Blood Angels again one day.

So to the people complaining about Grey Knights I have to say get over it. I heard all the same complaints about Imperial Guard and Space Wolves. It's just part of the game and that's not ever going to really change anytime soon if ever. To me it's nice to see the players who have followed Grey Knights over the years get a good codex. I bet that within a year the meta will significantly shift again... As it always does. Another aspect I love about the new codex is all the different types of armies you can play plus I like to see armies that don't have to rely upon heavy mech to do well... It's refreshing.

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