It’s time to look at the autumn tier list for Kill Team!
Today’s Warhammer 40,000 Kill Team article is a new tier list! I rank all the factions in the game currently, factoring in the stats and the latest Balance Dataslate. I also rank all the factions for Into the Dark as well!
If you want, I’ve done a more in-depth video on the subject which you can watch here:
Explaining the Tiers
So the tiers are pretty simple:
S Tier – A super strong kill team, one you’re very likely to see at a tournament that will definitely make the top cut and/or win an event too. Possibly broken but in realty just the best team(s) to play and only really lose to other S Tier teams match-up wise, ergo having very few to no bad match-ups.
A Tier – A very strong kill team. Very likely to be seen in a tournament that will make a top cut and even win the whole thing. Commonly finishes a 4 round tournament with a 3-1. Not as strong as a S Tier kill team but one you have to definitely keep in-mind for when aiming to play competitively.
B Tier – A strong kill team. Likely to be seen in tournaments and can make a top cut. Could win as well but not reliably. Definitely a team you need to remember for when playing in events Has more bad match-ups than the S and A tiers.
C Tier – An average kill team. Usually should be able to go 2 wins 2 losses in a 4 round tournament. May make the top cut but unlikely to win. You may need to remember these teams for events but it’s not a necessity.
D Tier- Bad kill teams. Weak due to either poor rules or mechanics. Unlikely to win with, commonly going 1 win and 3 losses at an event.
E Tier – Just…bad. Like a D Tier but worse. Desperately need buffs. You may not win games, but you’ll win the hearts of your opponents.
As a side note, I will not be including kill teams which have been replaced as per the balance dataslate. This may upset some people but this tier list is mainly for competitive play.
Also tiers do not represent skill. Someone who has spent a long time playing the same lower tier kill team is likely to beat someone hopping onto a higher tier one for the first time. This is just a general guide for players trying to find what the best kill team is for them to play or to watch out for at tournaments.
Q3 2022 Tier List
Here’s the new tier list. A lot has actually changed. The S tier has had 3 teams drop (Void-Dancer Troupe, Veteran Guardsmen and Novitiates) with only Pathfinders remaining in there. The rise of recent teams, namely Intercession, has changed the game a lot and the new balance dataslate ensures Novitiates aren’t S tier anymore. International tournament stats have also had a big effect as I’ll explain when it comes to most factions.
Pathfinders: Remain the best shooting kill team in the game. Anyone with 3 markerlights makes even a normal Pathfinder a deadly attacker. You have 13 operatives and are the only 10+ kill team in the game that can do 13 singular activations to ensure you activate last etc. Even with the changes they received in Q1, they define the game and are a real hard counter to any elite team in their current form. Ideally would like to see them lose 2 (1 would be fine, I guess) operatives and high intensity markerlights change to 3 EP to have them toned down a bit more.
Hunter Clade: Still a super strong kill team that flexes between shooting and combat really well. Has very few to no bad match-ups with their biggest hurdles being cost of entry and Tac Op scoring. What I really want is a general change to unwieldy weapons to not benefit from obscuring as I’m sick of Hunter Clade players trying to teach me trigonometry with heavy terrain and their Aquebous every time I play them. Feel a bit dubious putting them in S Tier due to their kinda okay win rate but Hunter Clade still come across as very strong on paper, especially thanks to being 11 operatives.
Intercession: Free and strong. 14 wound marines is amazing and they have a strong selection of operatives, rules and stratagems. All I’d really like to see is a tweak to durable and make it cost 2 chapter tactic selections like how it works in the codex. -1 crit damage is kinda too good on these guys and is why everyone mostly runs them with Rapid and Durable. Durable also needs a damage cap too. You could argue Bolter Discipline should only work if they stand still as they pay no CP for shooting twice but I think a Durable tweak is enough. Just a really solid kill team overall, really love how they play and work.
Novitiates: Still a deadly kill team in the right hands. Not being able to fix dice after re-rolls is a relief to everyone else as well as the cost increased on Auto Chastisers. Outside of those, still really good dice manipulation, just not as crazy as it was before and you have security. Honestly, the worse thing about this kill team is that Hunter Clade and Intercession exist, who are nightmares for you to fight.
Veteran Guardsmen: Only in A tier because of their overall lower win rate. Still the best average tournament winning kill team and packing 14 operatives with the only reliable way to flip conceal orders at range. While showing their age a little, still a very powerful kill team.
Void-Dance Troupe: Dropping down to A tier mainly because of them getting more bad match-ups (mainly Intercession). The kill team remains a solid threat due to all having fly, powerful rules, and easy tac op scoring. They just require more finesse, fittingly.
Wyrmblade: Wyrmblade are solid with some of the best deployment tricks in the game. Their main weakness is how it’s kind of easy to play around them with the right teams in you know all their tricks. However, you have to know how Wyrmblade play to beat them.
Legionary: Super solid, only missing out on S tier due to their drop in win rate and rise of the Intercession (notice a theme?). Lots of good rules and operatives although kinda only really doing well because of the Nurgle trait and how strong -1 damage is. As well as having access to security.
Imperial Navy Breachers: New to the scene but in a good way. Possibly broken equipment it +1 wounds being only 1EP but a strong selection of ploys and operatives. Their only weakness is their ranged threat but are a force to be reckoned with once you get up-close with them.
Drukhari: Exactly like last time, one of the best compendium teams that are almost at bespoke level. Fear the double blaster build.
Warp Coven: Possibly A tier again now, I struggle to rank these guys. The new changes to Rubrics helps them a lot and probably boosts them above B tier but the change is still untested and Pathfinders/Hunter Clade are horrible matchups for them so it kinda balances out.
Imperial Guard: Mainly here due to the over-efficiency of 10 Scions. Still a powerful threat that cannot be underestimated.
Kommandos: Honestly, I wanted to put them in A tier but their win rate has been slowly getting worse and worse to the point that I can’t justify it. Showing their age a lot now and would like to see some slight buffs to their melee here and there.
Blooded: Doing pretty well honestly. Still need some help in terms of starting with an extra blooded token and access to infiltration but overall really fun. Surprisingly killy once they close the distance.
Corsair Voidscarred: A perfectly balanced team. Corsairs float this middle ground where a minor tweak could break them. Saying that, I’d love it if they could select both gunner and a heavy gunner for their kill team. An extra operative would be too much most likely.
Hivefleet: Still really good, namely 10 Genestealers, 6 warriors or a mix of both. Just need a bespoke team now.
Deathguard: Deathguard’s main weakness is their DPR roll. Roll well and they go to A tier, roll badly and they stay around here. Also their mobility is a huge issue but at least has some workaround.
(Ross) Gellerpox Infected: A fairly honest kill team due to their big hulks not being able to claim cover from light cover. They are a damage check so gate-keep a lot of factions but remain very powerful due to their rules and questionable access to security.
Elucidian Starstriders: The Rogue Trader team is shockingly good. Maybe even A tier material due to all their rules and tricks. For now I’m putting them in B tier but I wouldn’t be surprised to see them rise. Definitely another team you can’t underestimate.
Phobos Strike Team: First of the C tier. Their shockingly disappointing win rates put them here. Their balance dataslate won’t buff them either unless it bestowed balanced on them too to offset being stationary. I would love this team to get an ability to do the first mission action during their activation for 1AP less. It’s thematic and would help the team so much.
Farstalker Kinb(l)and: Bespoke Kroot have okay rules. Why have I put them here? Well I’ve seen their unimpressive winrates for September but mainly because this is the least thematic bespoke team in the game. Really questionable rules like being 3 attacks base at 3/4 damage and having to pay a CP to be okay in combat as well as their most thematic rule being the ability to take another Tac Op archetype. No feed ploy or ability is just disappointing. They’re alright but they have almost no narrative flavour and it annoys me to no end. Make them 4 attacks base, going to 5 with their ploy and maybe and extra operative too. Also, hilariously, their special ammo equipment makes their pistol have unlimited range when using them RAW.
Talons of the Emperor: No change really. Intercession make pure Custodes worse but still a solid team. Give me a bespoke Eyes of the Emperor kill team however…
Grey Knights: Perfectly balanced, hurt by being 11 wounds each with no Tac Ops or special rules. Surprised they haven’t gotten a White Dwarf update based on Chaos Gate yet.
Heretic Astartes: Nmaely here just because you can take 8 Cultists with 3 CSM. Solid but Legionary are better.
Deathwatch: Same as Grey Knights. A White Dwarf update would probably push them to A/S Tier. Very flexible and powerful team.
Genestealer Cults: They’re alright, acolytes do work but Wyrmblade are better.
Scouts: 10 Space Marine Scouts remain a solid balanced force.
Orks: Kommandos do it better but still a solid place for new players with a compendium.
Adepta Soriatas: Another very balanced team. Novitiates are better but are also quite different.
Craftworld Aeldari: Barely in C tier but too good to be in D tier. Where’s muh White Dwarf Craftworlds team with a Warlock and 10 Guardians?
Chaos Daemons: Builds flex between B and C so for the sake of average balance, I’ve put them in C Tier. Not bad but not amazing either.
Necrons: As Sonic wisely says: YOU’RE TOO SLOWWWWW. They’re so slow. They can barely do anything except have amazing shooting.
Kroot: Slightly better but oddly more thematic and fun to play than the Farstalker Kinband. Might be due to the Krootox but I’m saying nothing…
Adeptus Astartes: They’re just not great…completely outclassed by Phobos and Intercession now.
Tau: Stealthsuits are never going to be a thing again. Stop trying to make them a thing. Also Pathfinders. Just play Pathfinders.
Into the Dark Tier List
Here’s my second ITD tier list. I’m not going to go into too much detail but main factors are if you have APL 3/ APL shenanigans, great close range/melee threat and/or broken forward deploy strats. A FAQ could destroy this tier list but as it stands, this is how I rank it all.
S tier is packed. Breachers almost break ITD due to being able to start with an open door and opening doors for free. Excellent close quarters rules. Intercession and Legionary also dominate due to being APL3 that can only be shot when they choose to be. Gellerpox laugh as their only weakness disappears and can rush through other teams quickly. Hunter Clade do shooting and combat well with APL tricks and have a foward deploy. Then Kommanods. They’re here because of Sneaky Git dropping 2 Kommandos on objectives TP1 and laughing away to victory. Also the Bomb Squig technically has lethal +5 and cannot be shot till it charges. Hilarious.
Everything else is about the same but the gap between S and A tier then A and B tier is hugggggge. I cannot reiterate how weird ITD is until we get an FAQ. Forward deploys really do break the game and walls blocking all ranges make Tac Ops weird too. Blooded are amazing on ITD though, I love Blooded there. So much fun. Vet Guard and Pathfinders are okay too but only due to having 14/13 bodies. Harlequins remain great due to APL3, fly and their Tac Ops. Necrons are just…horrible though. No way to really play around doors or go anywhere. Such a shame.
Q3 Tier List Overview
That’s it for the tier list. Happier with how this one shaped up. Having only 3 S tier teams from 4 is a nice change and overall I think balance is very good for Kill Team. All the tiers are pretty close together and player skill still dictates who wins, not straight team power. Will be interesting to see how the meta shapes over the next quarter, although I think Pathfinders and Intercession could do with some kind of tone down (you’ll see when the September stats drop) but more so for Pathfinders than Intercession.
Before I go, feel free to check out my Discord as well as my Patreon if you want to give me some more support!
So remember, until next time, no matter what the tiers say, stay away from tier 15 and you’ll always be able to roll a crit!