40k: HamWarmer 24.5 Update - v0.4

Here's another round of updated HamWarmer 24.5 PDFs. Testing will continue until I lose interest, civilization collapses, or I achieve perfect balance.

I'm reasonably happy with the results so far. Alternating activation makes the game feel much more dynamic. It's trivial to put together a list.


  • Units no longer collide during the Fight Phase, then mutually decide to flee in the Morale phase.
  • Tau do more Tau Things for the Tau Empire.
  • Psykers made slightly less scary.
  • Units can now Infiltrate on Turn 1.
  • Carnifexes move at a sensible speed.
  • Synapse ranges tweaked.
  • Many points cost changes.

And finally, here are a few pics from a test game.

The scenario pit the Imperial Fists against a Tyranid invasion force. Four groups of civilians were trying to escape a doomed spaceport. The Imperial Fists scored points for each shuttle or vehicle that successfully launched, and the Tyranids scored points for each civilian devoured.

Sneaky Genestealers attempt to seize an objective, but the civilians escape just in time, exposing the Genestealers to devastating bolter fire.

Meanwhile, Spore Mines rain down on the battlefield, inflicting a few superficial injuries but ultimately doing little to deter the Astartes.

A Lictor destroys one shuttle, but it is a minor victory for the Hive Mind. The majority of the precious biomass in the spaceport escapes... for now.


40k: Tyranid Swarm Completed

The Tyranid project I started in late 2020 is finished.

The prospect of an upcoming game (in person! With a real living human!) spurred me to finish the last few squads in two marathon sessions.

Every model in this army was purchased second-hand. The vast majority (including all the 'gaunts) had to be stripped and repainted. Still, the final results are worth it.

The original scheme was inspired by Marco Schulze's Hive Fleet Ouroboros, as seen in Forgeworld's book The Anphelion Project.

120 Termagants, 3 Pyrovores, and 1 Tervigon.

20 Gargoyles, 2 flying Hive Tyrants (one based on the old Forgeworld kit, one in plastic), 3 Lictors, and 8 Zoanthropes (including 6 Alien Brain Larva from Trollforged Miniatures).

60 Hormagaunts, 1 Tervigon.

32 Genestealers, 2 Broodlords, 1 Carnifex.

9 Raveners, 1 Trygon, 1 Slitherer (Red Terror), 3 Venomthropes, 1 Toxicrene, 3 Biovores, 24 Spore Mines, 1 Barbed Hierodule.

3 Hive Guard, 6 Mucolid Spores, 2 Carnifexes w. Crushing Claws, 2 Carnifexes w. Quad Devourers, 2 Carnifexes w. Twin Venom Cannons, 3 Tyrant Guard, 9 Ripper Swarms, 20 Devilgants, 1 Hive Tyrant w. Venom Cannon, 1 Hive Tyrant w. Quad Boneswords, 1 Warrior Prime, 9 Tyranid Warriors.

Painting Recipe:

  • Black primer.
  • Airbrush chitin in Vallejo 71.023 (Hemp). Highlighted up with a few drops of green and white
  • Airbrush carapace in Vallejo 71.075 (Sand Ivory). Highlighted up with a few drops of white.
  • Ink with Vallejo 73.300 (Sepia wash).
  • Drybrush carapace with Pallid Wych Flesh.
  • Touch up chitin with a 1:1 mix of Pallid Wych Flesh and Castellan Green.
  • Tongues and biomorphs in Xereus Purple, Pink Horror, and a dilute layer of Flesh Tearers Red.
  • Teeth, eyes, and biomorphs receive a wash of Gloss Nuln Oil.
  • Base in a 1:1 mix of Vallejo 26.809 Industrial Thick Mud and Vallejo 28.807 European Mud.
  • Touch up base rims.
If you can't paint so hot, paint a lot.


40k: HamWarmer 24.5 - Tau

HamWarmer 24.5 is my wobbly homebrew ruleset for Warhammer 40k games. Here's my take on the Tau faction.

Adrian Smith

Tau PDF (v.0.1)

The goal of this project, aside from simplifying the rules, is to make every army feel "right". Space Marines should feel like armoured posthuman warrior-knights. Tyranids should feel like a horde of ravening space bugs. Tau should feel like a combined arms force that bends (or outright breaks) conventions.

With HamWarmer 24.5, I'd like armies to rely on positioning and tactics to mitigate weaknesses. Screen. Redeploy. Use allies to tie up advancing units. Or, if that fails, just shoot everything before it gets to your lines.

As usual, testing is ongoing. Alternating activations makes Markerlights (and Tau shooting in general) much more interesting for everyone. Markerlight-heavy units tend to fire first (but can't benefit from their own Markerlights), followed by heavy weapons and seeker missiles, followed by everything else. 

I've also integrated some long-forgotten Kroot units into this list. Daniel Cockersell's sculpts deserve better.

If you spot any errors or omissions in the rules, let me know.