Building on a Budget: Dark Angels

They come in Dark Vengeance. If you've never played the game before, or you don't have a lot money, the Dark Vengeance kit comes with the big rulebook, and Templates. How are you not saving money right there!? A lot of people are going to tell you that Dark Angels are terrible, and that's fine. But, fact is, if you're on a budget, there really isn't any way that you're going to be able to build a legitimately good army, regardless of which book you use. So, all those people who are going to tell you that you shouldn't play Dark Angels, well, they're wrong. Buying within your budget is one of the smartest things you can do. That's just life advice right there.

Let's recap our rules for BoaB.
Rule #1; The goal is to get to 1850 as cheaply as possible, while
Rule #2; Not being bad.

Rule #2 says that deliberately taking units because they are expensive points-wise is not allowed. Because that's being bad.

Spoiler: List Building Process
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Let's talk Dark Vengeance.

Company Master; Combi-Plasma, Power Sword - 115 Points
Librarian; Force Sword, ML2 - 100 Points
Tactical Squad (x10); Plasma Gun, Plasma Cannon, Plasma Pistol - 185 Points
Deathwing Terminators (x5); Chainfist, Assault Cannon - 245 Points
Ravenwing Bikers (x3); Plasma Gun - 95 Points


Overall, 0.22. And gives you a Rulebook and Templates. If we assume that the Company Master is dead weight - because he is - then Dark Vengeance drops to 0.26. Which is still very, very good. You can even recoup some of the price on the Chaos models; Chaos players are always looking for more Cultists on the cheap, and the Chosen with the Power Axe is worth money, and you can probably get something for Vrosh Tattersoul as well - again, because of the Axe. But the rest, depends on the market. But it really doesn't matter, because, regardless of whether or not you can sell off your Chaos models, the Dark Vengeance box still sits at 0.27 for the Dark Angels, with Rulebook and Templates, and that's not nothing.

The Dark Angels expansion to Dark Vengeance is as follows;

Nephilim Jetfighter - 180 Points
Ravenwing Black Knights (x3); Ravenwing Grenade Launcher - 126 Points


Here's where it gets tricky. The Dark Angels Terminator box can be built in several ways...

Deathwing Command Squad (x5) - 295 Points
Deathwing Champion, Deathwing Apothecary, Cyclone Missile Launcher
x3 Thunder Hammers and Storm Shields

Deathwing Terminators (x5) - 255 Points
Cyclone Missile Launcher, x4 Thunder Hammers and Storm Shields

Deathwing Knights (x5); Perfidious Relic of the Unforgiven - 245 Points

Any of those options would be fine. Especially as you also another unit of Terminators already from the original box, to take the heat off. Yep, you guessed it. If we just even the Terminators out to a clean 250, gives the expansion box 0.31. Noting that the Command Squad option is even better for saving money. But, at this point, we're getting ahead of ourselves, since we haven't even picked our Warlord yet. Yep. You guessed it...

(0.15) (W) Azrael - 215 Points

You might even be able to use your Company Master with Combi-Plasma and Power Sword as your Azrael model. Maybe. Don't come crying to the internet if you're not allowed. Azrael is a reasonably powerful model, and, generally, people's willingness for you to use Count As models is directly proportional to the amount of effort you put into your model. Pulling your standard Dark Vengeance model out of the box and calling it 'Azrael'...Is not effort, even if he does have the same wargear.

Wait. Hold on. If you've been reading other BoaB Guides, or just know me well, you'll know that when I lock in my choices, I make them blue. As you can see, Azrael has not been made blue. That is, simply because, well, Azrael isn't that good, at least, not inside his own Codex. He is, however, very strong in the Codex AM book, but we're not Codex AM, we're Dark Angels, and, unfortunately, we don't need him. His Leadership buff isn't great because we're Marines, and we have And They Shall Know No Fear, we auto-Regroup, and can't be Swept. Failing Morale checks just isn't that big of a deal to Space Marines. He's not Eternal Warrior, and he doesn't have an AP2 weapon. So why are you paying over 200 Points for somebody who is just bad? That's breaking Rule #2, and it's not okay. So, who costs the next-most points that wont cripple our wallet?

(0.21) (W) Belial - 190 Points

He's blue. So he's sticking around. Unfortunately, no, you can't lazy your way into a Count As model with this one. Belial is, well, he's not super strong. But any Dark Angels Terminator unit that he Deep Strikes with, doesn't Scatter, and, all Dark Angels Terminators automatically show up on Turn 1 or 2 (your choice). Terminators showing up, Turn 1, no Scatter, is reasonably strong. It's just a shame you aren't Chaos Terminators with Combi-Meltas. So, what you have, is 5 Dark Vengeance Terminators, fixed with an Assault Cannon, and then you have five more Terminators that you can build how you choose;
Do you want one, massive unit of 10 Terminators, plus Belial, or do you want two smaller units of 5? 11 Terminators showing up in your opponent's face is nice for shock value. But if they can deal with it (i.e; a Vindicator, or mass Plasma), then they can deal with. Two units of five is less about putting all of your eggs into a single basket. Belial's unit wont Scatter, but the other unit, will. But the other unit has a Cyclone Missile Launcher which really isn't required to be in your opponent's DZ anyway. Still though, all of your Terminators can show up on Turn 1.
Do you want a Deathwing Command Squad? Well, actually yes. The DCS gives Belial FNP, there's an at-Initative AP2 weapon on the Champion, and you can still take a Cyclone Missile Launcher. Or, maybe you want the Deathwing Knights, 'cause they really do look pretty cool. Unfortunately, no. You don't. Unless you're playing against Chaos Marines, DWKs are pretty weak, unless you're playing against Chaos Marines, anything that DWKs can do could be done by a regular Deathwing Squad with Hammers and Storm Shields. Last, but not least, Belial makes Terminators Troops, which gives you a massive advantage for cost-saving. So, what've we got?

(W) Belial - 190 Points
Librarian; Force Sword, ML2 - 100 Points

Tactical Squad (x10); Plasma Gun, Plasma Cannon, Plasma Pistol - 185 Points
Deathwing Terminators (x5); Chainfist, Assault Cannon - 245 Points

Ravenwing Bikers (x3); Plasma Gun - 95 Points
Ravenwing Black Knights (x3); Ravenwing Grenade Launcher - 126 Points
Nephilim Jetfighter - 180 Points

Ravenwing Bikes, Scout. They've also got Teleport Homers. All of them. That means, all of your Terminators that Deep Strike onto the board aren't going to Scatter, either. The only difference is, Belial gets to pretty much land in your opponent's DZ. Basically, Belial needs protection.

Deathwing Command Squad - 295 Points
Deathwing Champion, Deathwing Apothecary, Cyclone Missile Launcher
x3 Thunder Hammers and Storm Shields


Yes. Having a Cyclone Missile Launcher and Storm Shield is legal. However, you may have to convince your opponents that a Power Maul and Thunder Hammer are the same thing. Due to the fact that Deathwing Knights just look cool, you should be allowed to. I'll say with 95% confidence that your opponents will let you. But, maybe not. Just don't glue the arms on until you're sure that your opponent aren't ****heads.

Well, that's the core of our army, and we're only on 1416 Points, giving us ~450 Points to play with. Now, if your great, money-saving idea is to just have two more units of Deathwing Terminators with a single Chainfist each at 225 Points per unit makes 450 exactly, and we can just drop some wargear somewhere else...Wrong. Rule #2 says don't be bad. However,

Tactical Squad (x10); Missile Launcher, Plasma Gun, Combi-Plasma - 180 Points
Deathwing Terminators (x5); Thunder Hammers and Storm Shields - 245 Points


Isn't an entirely bad idea. For those Terminators, you probably do want to buy the normal Space Marine kit, rather than the Dark Angels one. Then, what you can do, is place one Deathwing Knight from your earlier box into the unit, call him the Sergeant, and put a 'normal' Terminator into the Command Squad so it does actually look like there's a Thunder Hammer there, giving your opponents the illusion that you're actually trying.


Spoiler: Dark Angels, CAD
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(0.21) (W) Belial - 190 Points
(*) Librarian; Force Sword, ML2 - 100 Points

(**) Deathwing Command Squad - 295 Points
Deathwing Champion, Deathwing Apothecary, Cyclone Missile Launcher
x3 Thunder Hammers and Storm Shields

(*) Tactical Squad (x10); Plasma Gun, Plasma Cannon, Plasma Pistol - 185 Points
(0.36) Tactical Squad (x10); Missile Launcher, Plasma Gun, Combi-Plasma - 180 Points
(*) Deathwing Terminators (x5); Chainfist, Assault Cannon - 245 Points
(0.30) Deathwing Terminators (x5); Thunder Hammers and Storm Shields - 245 Points

(*) Ravenwing Bikers (x3); Plasma Gun - 95 Points
(**) Ravenwing Black Knights (x3); Ravenwing Grenade Launcher - 126 Points
(**) Nephilim Jetfighter - 180 Points

Total: 1841 Points.
* Dark Vengeance, 0.27
** Dark Vengeance Expansion, 0.28

Add 9 Points worth of wargear. Oh, and if you're up for it, cut off the Plasma Pistol on the Sergeant with a knife, throw on a Bolt Pistol you got from the Tactical Squad kit you bought, and then you have 24 Points to spend... I wouldn't know what you'd do with the 24 Points though. Maybe some Auspexes? So when you fire your AP2 Plasma at people, they have worse Cover Saves? Melta Bombs are also a good buy. Plasma Pistols are the worst - especially on 1-Wound models - but, the model comes hard-wired with it.


$513 AUD. 0.28. Not bad at all. Especially if you can sell off a handful of the Chaos models (remembering that not all of the Chaos models are worth money). The list itself, however...Well, I don't like lying. But, it's not the worst list around. The mistake, would be thinking that Rule #1 is more important than Rule #2, and then taking nothing but Terminators. It was something a lot of people did in 5th Ed., and it was really bad. Dark Angel players do it all the time, and it's bad. Rule #1 is important, sure. But Rule #2 is just as important, and spending any amount of money, time and effort on an army that is simply unplayable, is the worst.