One of the most exciting and fun new things we have in the new dark eldar codex is the Venom. As we speak, it's a transport without a model, however GW was gracious enough to give us a picture. Also there is the past references to the Venom in the old Harlequinn experimental codex that you can find pics of elsewhere on this blog. This makes it very easy for people to quickly construct Venom's for the battlefield.

The Venom is a BS4 F10 S10 R10 fast open-topped skimmer. It comes with a twin-linked splinter rifle, a splinter cannon, and a flickerfield. It comes with night vision, and its transport capacity is 5. It has some good options and starts off 5pts cheaper than a raider.

The one seemingly mandatory option is upgrading its splinter rifle up to a splinter cannon. This makes the cheap skimmer very heavy anti-infantry. Two splinter cannons means you move 12" and get an amazing 12 shots off at BS4. Move 12" fire 12 shots at up to 36" poisoned shots that wound on a 4+. Why would you not want a couple of these in your lists.

Other options include Retrofire Jets, Chain Snares, Grisly Trophies, Envemoned Blades, and Night Shields. You start the game with a flickerfield which gives you a 5+ invul save.

One of the nicest things about Raiders and Venoms is that they are opposites. One carries a dark lance or disintegrator and carries 10, while the other will have 2 splinter cannons and carry 5. Using the two of them, together really gives you great flexibility on the table top. One able to take out heavy armor, the other massed infantry.

One thing I love so far about poisoned shooting weapons of the Dark Eldar is the need to not care if those marines are in cover or not. It's easy to put down a hail of fire at a great distance with a good ballistic skill. The Venom truly excels at this. Moving 12"s with such a great range, really means you can almost always see and reach a target that you want to shoot at.

The tricky thing is to figure out what goes into the venom. Some units just don't seem to fit with a venom. You can only take 5 infantry in order to get the venom and this is the limiting factor. You need to have an efficient 5 man unit to take with the vehicle.

I like Kabalite Warriors and Trueborn the most. 5 kabalite warriors with a blaster and sybarite with a blast pistol are on the top of the list for me. Trueborn with a venom work, but in general I don't like the idea of suiciding my trueborn, so I prefer them in larger numbers.

When looking at maximizing the unit that rides the venom, both wyches and wracks require 5 models to get their special weapons. This means no independent character. I see this as a drawback, as it limits my flexibility on the tabletop at deployment. While this isn't always an issue, it makes me look at other unit types to take the venom, and makes me want to give wracks and wyches both raiders.

Overall I really like the Venom. In a force were you have several raiders, taking a couple venoms really are going to fill in your list. Currently I am fielding 4 raiders and 2 venoms in several of my lists, and I really like the flexibility of it. I keep them cheap, and don't add anything but the extra splinter cannon and they work out real well. You will see a lot of players taking venoms, whether its because they are playing multiple small unit (MSU) lists, or because they really like how cheap it is to get those 12 poisoned shots. Not to mention that it looks like we will getting a model for them sometime next year around summer time.

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