Pyrovores...yes, Pyrovores!

In my quest to field a non-standard Tyranid army that I like the looks and feel of, I am thinking seriously about picking up a couple Pyrovores for my eventual force.
Before your heads explode, let me explain why.

Many of the Sixth Edition codexes have featured units that serve pivotal roles in their respective army that everyone takes, Dark Angels being the anomaly so far.
Chaos Marines armies feature a lot of Cultists, at least in this area. These guys just hunker down, take potshots, and claim objectives. There are so many other, nastier units bearing down on you that you can't often spare the fire to wipe them out, especially if they're made fearless by an Apostle.
Daemons do the same thing, but with Plaguebearers. Those rotten bastards hide in terrain on or near an objective, and just exist. The 2+ cover save they get from Shrouded and Go to Ground is tough to beat.
And now Tau have their Fire Warriors and Pathfinders, who have weapons with solid range, and the ability to be keystones of an army with markerlights and Supporting Fire.

Nids will have a really tough time crossing the board with standard units against any of these armies, and that is a common complaint/observation of the Tyranid players and bloggers I follow.

The answer might be Pyrovores.

My theory is that you can take a pair of Pyrovores for under 100 points. Feed them into a Spore Pod, and land the whole bunch danger close to your target. Pods don't mishap on Deep Strike, unless they fall off the board. With the new FAQ allowing the Pyrovores to be placed anywhere that is fully within 6" of the pod, scatter is less frightening. This also allows the Pyrovores to be placed for maximum carnage with their flame templates.
Tau and Cultists won't get a save at all, and the Plaguebearers will be forced to use just their invulnerable and any Feel No Pain they have. Far better (for the Tyranids) than a 2+ cover save!

Those are my reasons for seriously considering Pyrovores in my army. Any counter arguments, suggestions, or ideas?

And remember, if all else fails, they can stand in as Biovore models!


  1. A good counter argument is: they're pyrovores.

    In general, the effectiveness of cover has been *decreased* in sixth edition (with the exception of Aegis Defense Lines), which would make a stronger argument against pyrovores.

    You're still faced with an expensive model with bad rules. You can be reasonably asured that you'll get one flamer shot (per pyrovore) on a unit, but with only 2 wounds at toughness four and a 4+ save, they will almost undoubtedly die before they get a second shot off.

    I s'pose the theory is not entirely without merit, as it will provide an unusual distraction that most people will not expect. Unfortunately, I just can't see them being very effective. Keep in mind that though they do have power weapons, they only have one attack (and most likely they won't be charging), likewise their volatility rule only applies if they're killed by something that causes instant death.

    It might be true that they're better in 6th than they were in 5th, but I'd have a hard time believing they've even crossed the "not too horrible" threshold. Feel free to prove me wrong though. :)

    1. All points I can agree with. Honestly, I'm just thinking of Pyrovores as an assassin unit that can eliminate certain targets that are lynchpins of enemy armies, like the Pathfinders crammed full of markerlights (though I'm told Pathfinders are no longer the markerlight delivery system they used to be), Guard blobs behind ADLs, etc.

      They are a little spendy (130 points for two in a pod, IIRC), but I've never been a huge proponent of measuring a unit's value based on points alone (despite my previous Gaunt article wheich breaks them down in a points-per damage formula ;)).

      Does the Nid army have any other options that can nuke those key targets without having to cross the board to do so?


    2. I've seen exactly one game with Tau in the new edition, and it seems that gun drones are the new marker lights. Flamers should work reasonably well against them though. As for guard blobs, flamers would be cute, but the best the pyrovores could hope for would be to thin the squad out (they're not going to kill an entire blob squad).

      As for options the Nids have to nuke key targets, it depends on what you're looking for. I'm guessing you're talking about "key targets with lots of models and low toughness" as that's the only thing that Pyrovores could *theoretically* be capable of. In this instance, a Doom in a pod does a fine job, as would Trygons (particularly primes), and probably even Mawlocs. For that matter, gaunts in a spore probably do a better job of damage output than a pyrvore (stay tuned for my rebuke of that unit on your other post though). The spore provides you the flexibility that you can probably circle around the back of a unit with an aegis defense line.

      Generally though, anything I'd consider to be a "key target" is more robust/sturdy, and a pyrovore couldn't hope to crack it. In those cases, the Doom, Trygon, Mawloc, etc. would be more prone to harming it (and would prove to be more durable as well).

      In my experience, dropping things on their own across the board (be it in a pod, or otherwise deep striking) inevitably leads to their premature demise. I've taken to walking everything across the board (except my Doom in a pod, or a stray Ymgarl squad), and find that it gives me far more survivability as a whole.

      Oh, Ymgarls! How could I have forgotten. They'll do what you're asking for as well. While they don't have an insane amount of damage output, they do reasonably well, and are reasonably tough--plus they're quite dependable and are the only unit in the game (to my knowledge) that gets a first turn charge.

    3. Ahhh, I'd forgot about Ymgarls as well. They can only get a second turn charge though, as Reserves don't roll until Turn Two.
      I do love the mechanics (and model!) of Mawlocs and Trygons.

      The local scene has a LOT of players who put Guard and Tau units into every list as an ally for whatever reason.

      All good feedback, thanks for the help! I'm admittedly hamstringing myself on purpose with some of myunit selection purely in an attempt to be a special snowflake, or to use models I think are interesting to paint, but these ideas help me a ton.

  2. By "first turn" charge, I meant the turn that they arrive.

    1. Ahhh, ok. Yeah, Ymgarls and Vanguard Vets are the only units currently able to pull off an on-arrival charge.

  3. If it hasn't already been said. Take Biovores instead. Fill same role, and even when they miss, they hit!
    Also as stated, Mawlocs <3 (x3)

    1. Well, Biovores don't ignore cover, but they are infinitely useful for sniping.

    2. I think he's referring to the fact that the biovores are a barrage weapon, so you determine any cover saves from the center of the blast (not from the point of the firing model). So, if the model is standing within area terrain, they probably still will get a cover, but it nullifies most intervening terrain.

    3. They don't "ignore cover" but the big issue you seemed to be worried about was ADLs, which the biovore does circumvent. The thing that makes me sad is that they compete with Mawlocs.