Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Deathwatch Codex

This is a full breakdown for Warhammer 40K 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics using the Codex Supplement: Deathwatch. 

Now fully compatible with Codex: Space Marines, this supplement will assist you in fielding all of the unique Deathwatch units along with their special rules and abilities. One of the biggest changes has been the integration of the Deathwatch using the same core book as the rest of the Space Marine Chapters. 

Want to learn more about the Deathwatch in 40k lore? Click here to check out our 25 facts about the Deathwatch!

Chapter Tactics

As per Codex: Space Marines, the Deathwatch Chapter tactic can be found within the Chapter Tactics section alongside all of the other different flavors. The following is their specific Tactic described just as all of the other Chapter descriptions found in our Codex: Space Marine breakdown/review. 

Deathwatch: Xenos Hunters

The experts of hunting the alien. The Deathwatch are extreme hunters in general but take extra pride against the xenos factions in the Warhammer universe. They are all able to re-roll hit rolls of 1 in melee against; Tyranids, Aeldari, Ork, Necron and T’au Empire units. Essentially any close combat unit with this tactic will excel against any of the stated races. A Terminator Assault Squad bearing thunder hammers and storm shields will strike more true even when wielding these heavy weapons. 

Deathwatch now have the battlefield role they wish to gain efficiency against built into their tactic. Once both armies are finished deploying, the Deathwatch player then selects a battlefield role such as: HQ, Elite, Troop, etc. Until the end of the battle, they are now able to re-roll a wound roll of 1 against said units with that battlefield role. Against Xenos factions, these two tactics combined together may almost guarantee excellent efficiency without support characters hovering around and more functionally independent units if need be.

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Battle-Forged Rules

Detachment Abilities

As long as every unit in your army has the Deathwatch keyword (excluding Agents of the Imperium and the Unaligned keyword) your army will benefit from this ability:

Mission Tactics

The Deathwatch specific mission tactic is quite an excellent variation of the well-known Space Marine’s Combat Doctrines. They are able to still benefit from the Devastator Doctrine for one Battle Round, the Tactical Doctrine for two Battle Rounds and the Assault Doctrine for three Battle Rounds. The difference is that the Deathwatch may select which Doctrines are active in any combination of the order (standard Combat Doctrines must be in this order: Devastator Turn 1, Tactical Turns 2 or 3, and Assault Turns 3 to 5). This is a very powerful Tactic when creating an army list to benefit and execute your gameplan on specific turns. If you need all of your Heavy and Grenade weapons to excel on Turn 3, simply wait until then to activate the Devastator Doctrine for its single-use.


Death to the Alien!:

Use this in the Fight Phase and add 1 to the Attack characteristic of models in this unit when in engagement range of any: Tyranids, Aeldari, Ork, Necron or T’au Empire units. An excellent Stratagem to fend off Xenos filth with not only quality but a quantity of attacks. (1CP)

Prognosticating Volley:

When a Deathwatch unit from your army is selected to shoot an Aeldari enemy unit, you may ignore any or all hit roll and ballistic skill modifiers for that attack. This is excellent especially against Aeldari as most of their vehicles are hard to hit or most units have the ability to activate Lightning-Fast Reactions (making them -1 to hit). (1CP)

Synaptic Severance:

When a Deathwatch unit is selected to shoot, until the end of the phase, when targeting a Tyranid Synapse unit, an unmodified hit roll of 6 automatically wounds the target. Most of the Tyranids main units have this keyword so when up against the bug race, this can see quite efficient play. (1CP)

Epic Deed Stratagems

Adaptive Tactics:

Once per battle, if a Watch Master unit from your army is on the battlefield, you may activate this stratagem. You may change the Battlefield Role that you selected from the Xenos Hunter Chapter Tactic to benefit from. This is a solid piece of utility against any xenos army in which you come up against as you can adapt to the way the game has began to shape. (2CP)

Atonement through Honour:

This essentially allows you to perform a Heroic Intervention with a unit that contains a Black Shield as if it were a character. Like most Heroic Intervention stratagems, this definitely has its place in threatening any opponent and a great reason to include units containing a Black Shield throughout your army. (1CP)

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Requisition Stratagems

Sanction of the Black Vault: A very interesting stratagem within the codex allows you to select a Deathwatch model in your army that has the word “Sergeant” in their profile and allows them to have one of the Relics from the Watch Fortress even though they are not a Character. This can definitely add character to a list and even a hidden gem that can be utilized in times of dire need throughout the course of many matches. (1CP)

A Vigil Unmatched: After a Deathwatch Character model (that is not named) has been selected to be your Warlord, they may be given one additional Warlord Trait. This has great customization feel to it and if you cannot decide on two separate traits, why not give the Warlord both. (1CP)

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Strategic Plot Stratagems

Stem the Green Tide:

This next stratagem really does what it says in the title. When an Ork unit declares a charge against one or more Deathwatch units, two things occur. Firstly, any or all of the units targeted may fire Overwatch and the second being, if any Ork models are destroyed as a result of the Overwatch, subtract 2 from their charge roll. An Ork player really needs to think twice before declaring any charges against an opponent with abilities this strong. (2CP)

Priority Doctrine Adoption:

If every unit in your army has the Deathwatch keyword, you may use this stratagem. You may select a Combat Doctrine that is not currently active for one unit until the end of the phase to gain bonuses from instead of the current one. Situational but useful in many cases throughout a match such as when requiring extra AP with specific weapons. (1CP)

Targeting Scramblers:

When playing against any T’au Empire armies, this is a must use. After a T’au unit has resolved attacks against a Deathwatch unit from your army, you may remove any markerlight counters. This really debuffs the T’au quite a lot considering most of their best damage comes when units are benefitting from up to 5 markerlights. (1CP)


This stratagem may be used in the Shooting Phase or Fight Phase. After making attacks against a Necron unit, your opponent must subtract 1 from their Reanimation Protocol rolls as a result from those attacks. This will definitely help keep those metal fellas down and out for the count. (1CP)

Brotherhood of Veterans:

In the Command Phase, select one Deathwatch unit from your army to benefit from one of the other Chapter Tactics or Successor Tactics found in Codex: Space Marines instead of the Xenos Hunters Chapter Tactic until the end of the turn. This is an exceptional ability, being able to be the perfect option of the Space Marine Chapters at the right times throughout the battle. Being able to advance and charge as White Scars, or even having exploding 6’s as Imperial Fists. (2CP)

Disruptive Launch:

In your Movement Phase, a unit containing a Deathwatch Jump Pack/ Indomitor Kill Team unit containing an Inceptor or Vanguard Veteran may still shoot in a turn in which it fell back. A great option to have, knowing that you can not be tied up so easily by other enemy units. (1CP)


During Deployment, select a Deathwatch Dreadnought or Biker unit from your army to gain the Teleport Strike ability. This Stratagem may be used twice in a Strike Force battle allowing these units to arrive as Reinforcements such as Terminator Squads. (1CP)

Relentless Assault:

A unit containing a Veteran Biker or Outrider model from your army may declare a charge in a turn in which it fell back. Biker units are already going to be an excellent choice for the Deathwatch, this reinforces why these models are almost an auto-include strengthening your army at its core. (1CP)

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Wargear Stratagems

Shroud Field:

A great way of keeping a Flyer around is by making them untargetable. This stratagem does just that. At the start of the first Battle Round, select a Corvus Blackstar unit from your army to not be targeted unless they are the closest eligible unit to the firing model. A great stratagem that is unique in more ways than one. (2CP)


At the start of the Fight Phase, if an enemy vehicle is within engagement range of a Watch Master unit, you may activate this stratagem. The unit suffers D3 mortal wounds and in addition are not eligible to fight until all other eligible units from your army have done so. This can come in handy in quite a few matchups, however may encourage over aggressive play. One must be careful when asking what they wish for, depending on the unit they intend to utilize this on. (1CP)

Special-Issue Loadout:

In your Shooting Phase, a Deathwatch Infantry unit from your army without Special-Issue Ammunition may activate this ability. Models in that unit gain the Special-Issue Ammunition ability and change their Type characteristic to Heavy 1 until the end of the phase. This does add some flexibility to your force when in need of the extra punch you require, especially when the Devastator Doctrine is active. (2CP)

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Kill Team Specialisms

Specialisms now cost additional points to upgrade Kill Teams in the same waypoints are paid to upgrade units in the Codex: Space Marines Chapter Command section. The way this system works is as follows: 

Any Kill Team upgraded with their specific Specialism will have the ability to re-roll wound rolls of 1 for any attacks made according to the specific Battlefield Role they benefit against. When you have selected an army-wide Battlefield Role to benefit from the Xenos Hunters: Chapter Tactic, the upgraded unit may re-roll all wound rolls when attacks are made against that specific Battlefield Role (Example: If you have selected the Troops Battlefield Role to benefit against – army-wide via Xenos Hunters, all units are able to re-roll wound rolls of 1 when they attack. Any units upgraded to the Furor Specialism may re-roll all wound rolls in this case). The following describes which Kill Team Specialisms benefit against which Battlefield Roles:

Aquila: (Select one additional Battlefield Role, different from the one you have chosen for the Xenos Hunters Chapter Tactic)

Venator: Fast Attack or Flyer

Malleus: Heavy Support, Lord of War or Dedicated Transport

Dominatus: Elites

Furor: Troops

Purgatus: HQ

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Army Rules

Warlord Traits

Vigilance Incarnate:

Select one Deathwatch Core unit from your army within range of this Warlord in the Command Phase. Each time they are selected, choose a Battlefield Role for them to benefit against (re-rolling wound rolls of 1 from their attacks). A solid option to consistently do throughout the game. The key component with the Deathwatch is their adaptability and this definitely embodies that profile. 

Paragon of their Chapter:

You may select a Warlord Trait from Codex: Space Marines for this Warlord instead of the list within the Deathwatch Supplement. Being able to give a Watch Master a trait such as the Rites of War is an amazing option to think about when creating an army list. 

Nowhere to Hide (Aura):

While Deathwatch Core units are within range of this Warlord, you may select an enemy unit, after doing so, units targeting the selected ignore any cover benefits they may be gaining. This is a decent option, considering how much terrain may be on some tables, ignoring cover is quite useful. 

Optimised Priority (Aura):

When a friendly Deathwatch Core or Character unit is completing an Action within range of this Warlord, that unit can make ranged attacks without the Action failing. This ability is also a stratagem in Codex: Space Marines which is a very solid ability. Actions are what help you win games in some cases and depending on your Secondaries chosen, can be vital in being as efficient as possible. 

Castellan of the Black Vault:

An interesting tool to buff a custom character such as a Watch Master. This Warlord may also be given either: Adamantine Mantle, Artificer Armour, Master-Crafted Weapon or Digital Weapons in addition to another Relic selected. A specific combo or two such as the Dominus Aegis Relic and Adamantine Mantle Relic can make your Watch Master exceptionally durable to survive the toughest of battles. 

The Ties that Bind (Aura):

A very strong aura trait is The Ties that Bind as it allows units to benefit from two separate abilities. The first allows units within the aura to re-roll Morale tests taken which has seen increased use in 9th Edition. The second letting you select one unit in your Command Phase within the aura to gain the Objective Secured ability. If they already have that, they count as an additional model when determining control of an objective marker. Very useful, similar to the Rites of War ability found in Codex: Space Marines. 

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Relics

The Beacon Angelis:

This Relic allows a unit, once per battle, to be removed from play and set up wholly within 6” of the bearer and more than 9” away from enemy units. There are only a handful of Relics that have an ability such as this one in the game and can be very powerful when changing the strategy of the match or reinforcing a tactic needing to be executed. 

Dominus Aegis:

A model with a Storm Shield, Relic Shield or Combat Shield may select this Relic. Add 1 to armour saving throws made for the bearer and Core/Character models within the aura’s range gain a 5+ invulnerable save. 

Osseus Key:

Watch Master only. When a Watch Master is within 12” of an enemy vehicle, it must subtract 1 from its attack’s hit roll. This can be useful against heavy mechanized lists. 

The Thief of Secrets:

This Relic replaces a few of the sword variants throughout the Codex. Very comparable to a Power Sword in profile however, it has a fantastic special ability. Invulnerable saving throws cannot be made against its attacks and its weapon gains an additional damage against any of the <Xenos> faction keyword units. 

The Tome of Ectoclades:

This Relic may be used once per battle in the Command Phase. The bearer gains an aura that Deathwatch Core units can re-roll wound rolls against one of your enemies datasheets. This adds extra punishment against an enemy unit you intend to vanquish. 

Adamantine Mantle:

A simple yet effective Relic when given to the right bearer. This model can ignore a lost wound on the roll of a 5+. 

Master-Crafted Weapon:

One weapon the bearer is equipped with, simply gains  1 additional damage on its weapon’s characteristic. The weapon is then considered to be a Chapter Relic. 

Digital Weapons:

A unique Relic, this allows you to make an additional attack with the “Close Combat Weapon” profile from the Warhammer 40,000 Core Book. If a hit is scored, the unit suffers 1 mortal wound. It is a decent way to generate extra damage, especially if the bearer has an excellent weapon skill characteristic. 

Artificer Armour:

Artificer armour is the same type that Terminator units are equipped with. The bearer gains a 2+ armour save, along with a 5+ invulnerable save. This is a good option for added durability. 

The Blackweave Shroud:

This Relic is excellent when coming up against heavy psychic armies or units such as C’Tans that dish out extraordinary amounts of mortal wounds. Add 1 to the Toughness characteristic of the bearer and in addition, when they are to lose a wound as a result of a mortal wound, on a 4+ the wound is not lost. A very solid Relic that will enhance the model’s durability. 

Spear of the First Vigil:

This replaces a Vigil Spear. This increases its shot output as well as its melee damage. A very solid upgrade for a weapon that will lead your force in most cases. 

The Soul Fortress:

A Librarian model only may take this Relic. Ignore any or all modifiers taken by this Librarian when casting a psychic power. In addition, increase the bearer’s Psychic Hood ability to 24”. A solid debuff to other enemy psykers at a much more potent range than its normal version. 

Banebolts of Eryxia:

A bearer with a bolt weapon can substitute the weapons attack for a single shot with a Banebolt of Eryxia. The one attack has a profile of S6, AP-2 and 3D. A very solid shot, enough to takedown most Elite infantry. 

Vhorkan-Pattern Auspicator:

The bearer gains the “Omnikinopticon (aura). Add 1 to the attacks hit roll for friendly Deathwatch Core units within range of the aura against enemy units with the Fly keyword. Being that the Fly keyword is a very strong ability in 9th Edition, many armies will try to include these units therefore making this Relic quite viable. 

Artificer Bolt Cache:

A simple buff to a character’s weapon. If they have a bolt weapon, they gain the Special-Issue Ammunition ability on the weapon’s profile.  

Eye of Abiding:

This improves the bearers accuracy when they shoot or fight. It also gives you away around the toughest of armour. When making an attack with the bearer, you can ignore any and all hit roll, wound roll, ballistic skill and weapon skill modifiers. In addition, unmodified wound rolls of 6 ignore invulnerable saves. 

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Xenopurge Discipline

Premorphic Resonance:

(WC6) – If casted, select a friendly Deathwatch unit within 18” of the psyker. Three separate abilities will be put into effect until the start of your next turn. That unit can fire Overwatch at a better rate, hitting on a 5+. If the unit is within engagement range of any enemy models, it can activate first (Fight First). The last added benefit is when making a melee attack with a model in this unit, add 1 to the hit roll. 

Fortified with Contempt:

(WC6) – Select one friendly Deathwatch Infantry or Biker unit within range of the psyker. Each time a model would lose a wound from that unit, on a 5+ they do not until the start of your next Command Phase. A very strong psychic power which can go a long way over the course of a battle adding resilience to key units. 

Neural Void:

(WC7) – Select one enemy unit within range and two debuffs will be activated against the target. Subtract 1 from Attack characteristics of models in the targeted unit. In addition, one of the most powerful abilities from a psychic power, only enables the enemy unit to charge the closest unit to them. Very incredible on the tabletop and essentially gives you a say in who your opponent will engage with. 

Psychic Cleanse:

(WC6) – All enemy models within 9” of the psyker must attempt to withstand this witchfire. Roll one D6 for each enemy model, on the roll of a 6, they suffer 1 mortal wound. This can be a solid form of mortal wound generation when caught in the thick of the battle or an extra way to attempt picking off a few wounds to soften up the enemy before shooting or charging. 

Mantle of Shadow:

(WC6) – One Deathwatch Infantry unit can have this power casted upon them. As long as they do not make any attacks (shoot, declare a charge), enemy models cannot target this unit unless they are within 12”. This is a great way of keeping a unit in the backfield alive while forcing the enemy to want to get closer to your blending units at a cost. 


(WC7) – This can be casted upon an enemy Character. They first suffer 1 mortal wound and then until the start of your next psychic phase, reduce their aura abilities to 3”. If the warp charge value that you casted it on (psychic test result) was greater than the Character’s Leadership, then no enemy units can benefit from any of their auras. 

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Match Play Rules

Chapter Approved Rules

Battlefield Supremacy

The Long Vigil: This Secondary may be difficult to execute but has a great reward if completed. You will score 5 victory points if there are no enemy units within 6” of your deployment zone (excluding Aircraft) and at least one Deathwatch unit (excluding Aircraft) from your army wholly within your deployment zone. Although this cannot be scored in the first turn, with the right list build, this can become very achievable against some matchups. There however are matchups where this may not be possible when facing armies such as Grey Knights and Genestealer Cult. 

Purge the Enemy

Cull Order: This secondary is an interesting choice, however gives your opponent a say in the decision. After both sides have finished deploying, starting with your opponent, both players alternate selecting Battlefield Roles (HQ, Elites, etc.) from the units in your opponent’s army. Once three have been selected, score 5 victory points after every unit has been destroyed from a Battlefield Role selected. Example: If your opponent has 3 Troop choices and Troops were selected as one of the 3. Once you have destroyed all three of those units, score 5 victory points. 

Shadow Operations

Cripple Stronghold: After both sides finish deploying, your opponent must select one objective marker to be their Stronghold objective marker (if there is an objective wholly within your enemies deployment, that must be selected). If you have selected this secondary, Deathwatch Infantry from your army may complete the following Action: Cripple Stronghold (Action), a Deathwatch Infantry unit from your army can begin this Action if no enemy units are within range of the objective and complete this in your next Command Phase so long as the unit is still within range of the objective.

Although you score 6 points each time this is completed, this can be quite difficult to accomplish, especially against tough, durable armies such as Death Guard. A positive outlook for this secondary is that you can hope that your opponent will play very defensively to negate you from achieving this, giving you the rest of the board to dominate and win the game.  

No Mercy, No Respite

Suffer Not the Alien: Up against a Xenos faction of any kind, this secondary is a fairly safe bet. Score 1 victory point for destroying any <Xenos> keyword units (Aeldari, Ork, etc.) over the course of the battle. As a No Mercy, No Respite secondary, I can imagine Deathwatch players will always consider this one against a Xenos faction. They are the Xenos Hunters after all, very fitting for them indeed. 

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Datasheets


Special- Issue Ammunition:

When a model is selected to shoot with a weapon with this ability, select one of the following Special Rounds to fire:

Dragonfire Bolt:

The target does not receive the benefit of cover against these rounds. 

Hellfire Rounds:

When firing against enemy units (other than Vehicle or Titanic) add 1 to the attack’s wound roll. 

Kraken Bolts:

Add 6” to the range of this weapons profile when firing these rounds and improve the AP of the attacks by 1. 

Vengeance Rounds:

When firing this round, add 1 to the weapons damage characteristic. 

All of the various types of ammunition are great choices and can have a massive impact across the battlefield. The only issue currently is that many unit’s weapons have lost this special ability and therefore making few and far between actually benefit from this. 

Mixed Unit:

When using a Toughness characteristic, you may use whatever the majority toughness the models have.

Example: if there are three T5 models and two T4 models, T5 is the profile that can currently be used for the unit. Bolter Discipline will still work as normally on a model to model basis.

Any other abilities such as Fly will only apply to the individual models in which have this on their normal datasheets (Kill Teams are constructed from many datasheets throughout Codex: Space Marines, which is where all the rules on each model are located).

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Creating Kill Teams

Proteus Kill Team 

This unit contains 1 Watch Sergeant, 4 Deathwatch Veterans. You may add any of the following 5 models to this unit: 1 Deathwatch Veteran, 1 Deathwatch Terminator, 1 Veteran Biker, 1 Vanguard Veteran.

Abilities: Only Veteran Bikers can use the Turbo-boost ability if their unit only contains Veteran Biker models. 

Fortis Kill Team

This unit contains 1 Intercessor Sergeant, 4 Intercessors. You may add any of the following 5 models to this unit: 1 Intercessor, 1 Assault Intercessor, 1 Outrider, 1 Hellblaster. 

Abilities: Devastating Charge only applies to Outrider models. Outriders can only turbo-boost if their unit only contains Outriders. 

Indomitor Kill Team

This unit contains 1 Heavy Intercessor Sergeant, 4 Heavy Intercessors. You may add any of the following 5 models to this unit: 1 Heavy Intercessor, 1 Aggressor, 1 Inceptor, 1 Eradicator.

Abilities: Only Eradicators can shoot twice when using the Total Obliteration ability. 

Spectrus Kill Team

This unit contains 1 Infiltrator Sergeant, 4 Infiltrators. You may add any of the following 5 models to this unit: 1 Infiltrator, 1 Incursor, 1 Reiver, 1 Eliminator. 

Abilities: Omni-Scramblers are only applied while there are Infiltrator models in this unit. Multi-Spectrum Array only applies to Incursor models in this unit. Terror Troops only applicable to Reiver models in this unit. 

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Units


Watch Master

The Watch Master returns to lead these hunters into battle. This unit is an excellent choice as they have the “Watch Master” ability on their datasheet which is equivalent to the “Chapter Master” ability found in Codex: Space Marines. Also with the ability to customize this Character with many different Relics and Warlord Traits, they can be quite vital and can even be the pillar you build your army around. Equipped with a Vigil SPear (which can be upgrade) they will also make quick work of enemy infantry with ranged attacks or carve through the toughest of adversaries in melee. 

Watch Captain Artemis

One of the greatest heroes of legend and a well-known Deathwatch Character. Artemis is the equivalent of a Space Marine Captain with abilities such as “Rites of Battle”. However, equipped with great ranged and melee weapons, Artemis can surpass expectations on the battlefield in most cases. Another interesting ability on his datasheet is “Unstoppable Champion” which adds that extra bit of durability that a character of his prowess deserves. He can ignore lost wounds on the roll of a 6. 

Chaplain Cassius 

Chaplain Cassius returns in this supplement intended to represent an earlier point in his life. He still is one of the most powerful Chaplains to date and is quite an inspiring leader on the battlefield. Alongside his great abilities in combat and Xenos hunting skill he has a few abilities making him a great choice to include in your army. An ability such as Fiery Conviction is very strong when needing to inspire the ranks of Space Marines around him. When reciting a litany, add 1 to the roll (litanies are now recited on a 2+ in this case).

Codicier Natorian 

A strong psyker within the Deathwatch ranks is Codicier Natorian. Having an excellent combat weapon such as Duty’s Revelation is but a fraction of the reason why to include this unit in your army. He is also a very powerful psyker with an ability on his datasheet called “Battle-psyker”. Adding 1 to psychic tests when attempting to manifest the Smite psychic power or a Witchfire psychic power such as Psychic Cleanse. 


Deathwatch Veterans (Core)

This unit is the classic Deathwatch tactical Marine equivalent. The ability to have multiple different loadouts makes them a fantastic option as well as having the Core keyword to benefit from the range of auras or buffing abilities throughout the main Codex and this supplement. The biggest change we can almost all agree on is the added wound on each model. Bringing these soldiers in line with the rest of their Firstborn counterparts and right on track with Primaris Space Marines.

Kill Team Cassius (Core)

This KillTeam takes a slightly different approach in the Troop slot, allowing there to be Veterans of any kind (Bikers, Vanguard, Terminators). A flexible unit such as this can be potent when all the various combinations are added together. The ability to all be equipped with weapons that fire Special-Issue Ammunition is a great option to have in your force and when in large squad sizes, the “Unflinching” special ability is perfect for this unit. This unit automatically will pass any Morale tests. 


Deathwatch Terminator Squad (Core)

Deathwatch terminators are quite on par with the Terminators found in Codex: Space Marines (essentially identical). Just as viable of an option as they have ever been, Terminators most definitely have a place in many lists especially considering that they have also gone up by 1 wound on their characteristic as all other Terminator Squads have. 

Fast Attack

Veteran Bike Squad 

This squad is a great choice that is unique to the Deathwatch. Being able to have up to 6 Veteran Bikers and an Attack Bike is great for taking over the board in no time at all. With their solid toughness making them durable and great movement (highly mobile), this unit can have multiple roles it fulfills all at once throughout the course of a battle. Whether it be threatening objectives further away, contested by your opponent or a fast shooting platform with a solid amount of firepower. 


Corvus Blackstar

This unique Flyer returns to the Deathwatch’s aid in this supplement. Equipped with two blackstar rocket launchers and a twin assault cannon, this model has a decent loadout to hail down upon enemy units below. As an Aircraft with the Hard to Hit ability, it is tougher to bring down out of the sky while also adding 1 to its saving throws against other enemy Aircraft model’s attacks. One of the best reasons to include this in your force is its transport capacity. It can transport up to 12 models and can take Infantry or Biker units, very unique indeed. Jump pack and Terminator models count as two spots while Biker models count as three. This can allow you to take customized Kill Team Cassius units exactly where you need them and not worry about any model slowing the others down (Terminators usually).

Recommended Secondaries for Matched Play (Competitive Play) 

When fielding a Deathwatch army, you must select Secondary scoring options that are achievable and mesh well with the overall playstyle of the list you have constructed. Deathwatch seem to be quite mobile considering they are Space Marines due to their many movement tricks and ability to have units Teleport Strike if need be.

A unit such as Aggressors are a fantastic choice for the Deathwatch, as they can now come in as Reinforcements into the thick of the battle with Flamestorm Gauntlets, perform an Action and still utilize all of their firepower (a stratagem from Codex: Space Marines). The following are three Secondary choices selected in order to gain as many victory points as possible (generally speaking) throughout a competitive game. 

When playing a Xenos Faction (depending on their build and Mission of course): 

  • Battlefield Supremacy: Engage on All Fronts
  • No Mercy, No Respite: Suffer Not the Alien
  • Shadow Operations: Deploy Scramblers

When up against the other (non-Xenos) Factions (also depending on your opponents build and Mission): 

  • Battlefield Supremacy: Engage on All Fronts
  • No Mercy, No Respite: Oaths of Moment
  • Shadow Operations: Raise the Banners High

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The post Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Deathwatch Codex appeared first on Nights At The Game Table.

Warhammer 40k 9th Edition Deathwatch Tactics: Deathwatch Codex