Painting Guides by Codex

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

See Terminators Surging to Victory - Fluff Rules for 40K

+++ OVERVIEW +++
I have spent a lot of time thinking about how to match up the fluff in the vast 40K universe to the rules as they are presented. I like to look at the fluff and how it has changed over the decades as well to work with rules that have been consistent to the fluff over a long period of time.

The new rules:

  • Terminator armor offers a 2+ save on a d10.
  • Crux Terminatus is now wargear for loyalist terminators that offer a 5+ force field save on a 1d6. Power field saves are taken before armor saves.
  • Artificer Armor retains a 2+ save on a d6.
  • Loyalist terminators are now at +50% points.
  • Chaos terminators are now at -5 points each.
  • All terminators are now initiative 2.

Here are my initial working thoughts:

  • Terminator armor at a 2+ on a d6 does not offer the staying power that their fluff suggests.
  • Terminator armor is stronger than artificer armor.
  • The Crux Terminatus is what offers the invulnerable save to terminators and acts as a power field.
  • Thus, chaos terminators should not receive the invulnerable save.
Here are my initial sources of information:
The big problem here is that terminators can be wiped out by mass small-arms fire quite easily. A 16.7% save ratio is way too poor for the armor that can stop shots that would penetrate tanks. I wish to rectify this by making their armor truly scary.

I went about two different save rates for this. Either a 2+ on a d10, which brings the save ratio to 10% or a 3+ on 2d6 with adjustments based off of strength as it was in 2nd edition. This yields a save ratio of 2.8% to start, which I am comfortable with against autoguns and lasguns or pistols. That is the way the fluff represents this.

Ultimately, this would make autocannon shots or battle cannon shots much more likely to damage a terminator than before, but small arms fire would be much MUCH less likely to wipe a terminator out, and that is what armies have a lot of.

I went with the d10, because it is a lot easier than incorporating 2nd edition terminator rules with multiple rules for lowering armor saves, including for AP 2 and 1 weaponry. It is still a game that has to flow, and this is a lot closer to the fluff.

+++ THE CRUX +++
There is a lot of information out their on the Crux Terminatus and some rules within the Deathwatch RPG. Basically, the fluff states that the Crux contains a sliver of the armor of the Emperor of Mankind, and that sliver protects the wearer from harm by casting aside shots. In Deathwatch RPG, it acts as a 35% effective force field. In 40K, the 5++ is 33.3% effective, so it can be kept, albeit as a save before the armor save. This increases the staying power of a terminator further.

There is no information supporting that a chaos terminator should receive the same save. So I have removed it and lowered the point values arbitrarily. =)

+++ AGILITY +++
Slow and purposeful does not fully support how slow these guys are. In Deathwatch RPG, terminators lose 30 agility (initiative) on tests due to the armor. I limited that to just 2 for 40k rules, as 1st company veterans would likely have agility in the 50 range.

What are your thoughts?


  1. Chaos terminators should retain 5+ invulnerable save due to the dark gods aura around them. Terminator armor is even more rare for CSMS since only the veterans from the old legions are the only ones who have some. Only the favored champion and veterans of chaos earn terminator armor thus get the blessing of the dark gods so they should retain 5+ invulnerable save.

    1. Do other veterans/Chosen or champions of chaos get a 5++ invuln? Or do you have any other evidence of the aura of the chaos gods on chaos terminators?

    2. Read chaos space marines codex on terminators as well as the wiki

    3. I am sorry, I just poured over the wiki and I have read the most recent codex, and I have not seen anything that suggests they have the aura of the dark gods. Does an aspiring champion have that aura? They are comparable.