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Old 27 Jan 2008, 12:22   #1 (permalink)
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Default Orky Know-Wotz: A review of the new Codex

The tale of the Ork Codex is a long and difficult one. Crash landed on a desert planet, it was painstakingly built over many years. Alas, the original author died, and his descendants weren't quite sure what to do. Some thought Orks should be Shooty, some thought Choppy, some thought they should have loads of Boyz, some thought they should have a few hard gits. One thought he was writing Codex: Dark Eldar. In the end, the Codex was complete, yet no-one could decide whether it was the Gork version, or the Mork version. Civil war broke out, and the Codex was burned down. From the ashes, bands of Orks search Da Skid, seeking scraps of rules to rebuild the Codex and...

...oh, wait, that's GorkaMorka.

So, Codex Orks. Where to start...

Let's start at page 1; the contents! Look at that! Mountains of background for all things Orky! It's a little hard to review this section, but I felt it worthy of mention. Be you a grizzled Skarboy or a scrawny Yoof, it's worth giving this an in-depth look. Throughout, I'll be providing a personal rating out of 10 for each unit entry, based (naturally) on my own opinions, and whether I feel the unit has a place in the horde of Masta Mek Grozkrugga.

Now, let's get to the gubbinz: the army list!


I figured I should put these seperately, as several of them hide in other sections beyond HQ.

Let's start with Thraka. What can I say about him... he's as big, ugly and killy as ever. I've never actually liked Thraka, because he doesn't actually seem Orky to me; the guy is stomping around with a 2+ armour save, and can potentially have a 2+ invulnerable! Orks, to me, are about two things; Kustomising, and exploding. Thraka can't be Kustomised, as he's a Special Character, and he's insanely tough. Not my style.
Da Mek Sez: 6/10. Undeniably hard, but any real Warboss will want to carve their own name out of the enemy.

In sharp contrast, there's Mad Dok Grotsnik. I've followed this guy's career since he first appeared in White Dwarf's "Make an Ork Army" project. He began his career as a Dok who accidentally removed his own brain during surjery, and he's only gone downhill from there. Grotsnik is so much fun; just throw him into a really killy close-combat unit, and leave him to it. The image of him wading through squads of Space Marines, hacking off limbs and screaming "Operate! Operate! Still time to operate!" gives me a warm, fuzzy feeling inside.
Da Mek Sez: 9/10. Let the Squig Brain Transplants begin!

Next, there's Wazdakka Gutsmek. Not only does he have some of the most awesome fluff around (the image of him smashing through a Titan's cockpit, burning from re-entry through the shields, still makes me laugh), but he's painfully good statwise! He's got gunz all over the place, he's got a big Power Klaw, and his Bike of the Aporkalypse let's him provide a mobile firebase that's faster than anything even the Eldar can dish out! He can potentially spray his murderous anti-tank fire into a target 72" from his starting point! Combined with his "Da Bike Boss" rule, Wazdakka is fantastic for anyone who feels the need for speed!

Old Zogwort has got to be one of the best Characters around, simply for the sheer hilarity of damning a Daemon Prince, C'tan and so on into Squigdom. Coupled with the fact he gets at least three attacks a turn that wound on 2+, and any other powers that might randomly earth itself in someone nearby, Old Zogwort is sure to be a source of much hilarity.
Da Mek Sez: 10/10! There is no way anyone could not love this guy!

From the Mad to the Sneaky, we have Boss Snikrot. His stat-line is formidable, his weapons are pretty painful, but his Ambush rule really takes the cake. Using it, Snikrot can finally take revenge on behalf of every player who has ever faced Space Wolf Scouts. When Snikrot and his Red Skull Kommandos pop up behind your lines, you are in for a world of pain!
Da Mek Sez: 8/10. He may not be the killyest guy around, but he's bound to cause carnage.

Whilst Snikrot comes from behind, Zagstruk comes from above. He's brave, he's nasty, and frankly he can probably get a job in the Guard when he retires. Being able to charge on the turn they arrive is fantastic, and the image of Stormboy feet sticking out of smoking craters only adds to the hilarity.
Da Mek Sez: 8/10. Flying Commissar! Woo!

Last, but by absolutely no means least, is Kaptain Badrukk. Badrukk's gun, Da Rippa, is worthy of mention solely because it has more chance of misfiring than it does hitting the enemy! He's not bad in combat either, though given the nature of Flash Gitz, you'll probably want to stick to shooting. Badrukk can potentially be devastating, or blow himself up. Either way, he's going to make your games interesting! I should also mention he is the only Ork with a 3+ Armour save. Presumably, he threatened the Codex team to keep it that way.
Da Mek Sez: 7/10. He's just a little too expensive in my mind... but the potential damage is brilliant.


Where would we be without the Warboss? Insanely strong, great fighters, loads of attacks and unbelievably tough to boot. I know a few of the old options will be missed, but with the current options you can create some fantastic Warbosses. Perhaps my favourite addition is the fact the 'Uge Choppa (now named "Big Choppa") actually has a use now! Although the Power Klaw is obviously going to appeal, a Strength 7 Warboss could potentially play merry hell against all manner of foes. Charge one into a Dreadnought, and you can rip it in half before it fights back! Mounting your Warboss on a Warbike is also extremely potent, making them faster, tougher and all the more Killy! If you want to field an elite army, keep in mind your Warboss allows one Nob or Meganob unit as a Troops choice.
Da Mek Sez: 10/10! Every army should have a Warboss!

Big Meks make a nice, cheap HQ unit. Though you may well be tempted to use one to fix your tanks, I think the main lure of these guys is going to be the Shokk Attack gun. This gun will either go catastrophically wrong, or obliterate 400 points of the enemy army in one shot. Aside from this nostalgic piece of carnage, the Mek's got some other solid options; Burnas, Power Klaws, Kombi Weapons, Force fields, the Mega Blaster and a good chunk of Gubbins ensures your Big Mek will get the job done, even if it wasn't the job you paid for. Finally, don't forget you can field a Deff Dread as a Troops choice if there's a Mek in your list.
Da Mek Sez: a hundred million squillion out of ten! (Edit: Grozkrugga's bias aside, I'm going for 7/10; I'd take one as a second HQ choice, but even with the Shokk Attack Gun the Warboss appeals far too much).

Finally, there's the old 'Eadbangers, the Weirdboyz. Unpredictable, the Weirdboy might tear your enemy apart, or he might blow his own head off. Although he's not exactly weak in combat, you don't really want him to be there most of the time, unless you're going to cross your fingers and hope his Weird powers generate a Power Weapon.
Da Mek Sez: 6/10. Not bad if you're looking to add a second HQ choice, but otherwise I'd steer clear.


Nobz are everything they've ever been; big, tough and killy. Nob units can be kitted out to insane levels; Big Choppas, Power Klaws, Kombi Weapons, 'Eavy Armour, Waaagh! Banners, Bikes, Battlewagons for Transports... it is quite easy to blow the better part of 500 points on one unit! As such, Nobz must be handled with care; a maxed out unit is undeniably deadly, but by the time everyone stops shooting them, you might not have many left. For those who feel their Nobz need to be even tougher, you can attach a Painboy, granting them all Feel No Pain.
Da Mek Sez: 9/10. So long as you can keep yourself from going mad, Nobz will provide you with the heavy hitters you need.

Meganobz are Nobz for those who never got over playing Space Marines. Big, clankly, and seriously hard. Twice as expensive as a regular Nob, Meganobs will undoubtedly do you proud if used right. Unfortunately, Meganobz miss out on a lot of the more enjoyable upgrades, such as Waaagh! banners and the Painboy, so when Howling Banshees and Plasmagunners come calling, you're really going to feel them!
Da Mek Sez: 6/10. Orks clanking around in 2+ saves doesn't really seem "Orky" to me...

Time to set things on fire, the Burna Boyz are here! With every model packing a Burna, these guys can potentially cause a lot of mayhem! Assuming they don't get blown to pieces on the way, a Burna Mob can wipe out entire legions of Gaunts, Guardians, Guardsmen and lots of other things beginning with G. Alternatively, throw them into combat and you have Power Weapons! For extra firepower, a Mek can be added to the unit, though unless you want a Kustom Mega-Blaster or Rokkit, you'd be forgiven for leaving him out. Alas, with no Transport option, I can see Burnas taking a lot of damage as they try and get into range...
Da Mek Sez: 6/10. Definately nasty, but lack of Transport and no Meat Shields makes things hard going.

If Tanks are in the way, Bust 'em! An entire unit armed with Rokkit Launchas sure sounds fun, and that's exactly what Tankbustas are! Capable of pouring out a lot of anti-tank fire, Tankbustas can even be retrofitted into a close-combat unit, sort of, though I would not recommend it unless you're likely to be charged by enemy Dreadnoughts. Like Burnas, Tankbustas lack any kind of sacrificial Boyz in the unit, so you will feel every loss, and their rules make it hard to use them for Marine Sniping; you could well be forced to shoot at a Rhino when you'd rather engage Devastators! Bomb Squigs are the last little gem on this explosive icecream sunday, and you'll probably forgive them if they occasionally blow up your own vehicles.
Da Mek Sez: 7/10. They have a fair few weaknesses, but they're more likely to help you out than Burnas.

Lootas are yet another shooty unit. Gone are the stolen Imperial weaponry, and in come just one weapon; the Deffgun. Very strong, but random in its number of shots, Lootas are excellent for engaging light vehicles and enemy infantry. Once again, you have no spare bodies to get in the way of enemy shooting, but Deffguns have fantastic range so this is less of a problem. Finally, you can stick a Mek in the unit, although as the Deffguns outrange everything he can take, I'm not sure why you would. Lootas should definately be considered if you need supressing fire, or just like Dakka!
Da Mek Sez: 8/10. Good range, big damage, wonderfully shooty.

Kommandos are the sneaky unit of the Ork army. Infiltrate and Move Through Cover ensure the Kommandos get to where they need to be, and they can carry Big Shootas, Burnas or Rokkit Launchas for supporting fire. Whilst they appeal, adding Boss Snikrot can really turn these guys into a killer unit!
Da Mek Sez: 8/10. Use them right, and they will hurt!
Farewell, Kangaroo Joe, you shall not be forgotten.

Originally Posted by Tom Norman
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