Genestealer cult official rules


Aug 30, 2012
Maitland, Florida
I've been busy with non-Necromunda stuff for a while (thanks Infinity), but I did check back in to touch base in Genestealer cult rules...especially given the great new models by Macrocosm. I quite like the idea of a simple rules set, with a few flavorful characteristics to mark the cult as special. Magi with psyker powers is a must. Mutations here and there, perhaps. The real question is what to do about Genestealers. They aren't much fun to play against for most gangs, and fun is what Necromunda should be all about. Ban the Stealers outright, as their presence would give away the cult? Limit them to one?
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Gang Hero
Nov 29, 2014
Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, UK
My opinion remains that purestrain genestealers as written in 2nd Ed 40k, should remain an Arbitrator/Campaign Master tool. As relates to a Genestealer Cult gang, that would involve them most likely in the event that the cult is defending in the Storming the Barricades arbitrator scenario first released in Outlanders (and which oddly I can only find in 'tweaked' form as an LRB file in the Vault - I'll look to correct that). In short, it's a multi-gang scenario in which attackers outnumber defenders (in terms of gang rating) at a ratio of between 2:1 and 3:2. Should the defenders gang rating be on the low side, they can be permitted a balance of 'free credits' to spend on defensive measures like razorwire and wall-mounted guns. So if two gangs with combined rating 6000 attacked a Cult with Rating 2500, the Cult ought to receive 500-1500 credits for defenses, on the judgement of the Arbitrator. I'd just add 280cred purestrains to the options of a Genestealer cult.

The more complicated option would be to have immature purestrains as a recruitment option. The listed stats could then be taken as purestrain max. stats.
Reducing that stat block equally to House Ganger starting/max stat differences would then give:
.6....4....0...5....3....1...4...2....8 for starting

.6....7....0...6....4....1...7...4..10 for maximum
Wounds could not be altered down as the standard 'stealer only has one. What it does get is a whole lot of WS to soak up flesh wounds (if a player gets lucky). Though in this method, I'd give purestrain a max Wounds of 3.
That's still a very (very!) nasty starting stat block to me. Not too dissimilar to the Scaly and without recourse to weapons. But then, the scavvy combat monster has to double as their heavy weapon trooper so melee potential gets diluted, while purestrain are very pure focussed.
My first thought would be to take another point of Strength from starting purestrains and possibly drop their Move to 4. Then I'd tailor their Advance Table to grant Skills only on 2 and 12 (maybe 2, 3, 11, 12) and limit skill choices (I'm thinking only Agility and Stealth even on 2/12), as they lack human creativity. A Move increase advance would then need to be included and a purestrain would need 14 advances (16 if starting M:4) to max out all stats (with W:3). With the standard Experience Advance Table (and I'm still running on ORB - other rulesets may vary) then, a purestrain would need to begin with no more than 50+d6 XP in order to fit all of those in.

So in fact, if you started a recruited purestrain at 60xp, it could never achieve the scary 40k stat-block even if it never picked up a skill. And then of course they are susceptible to Serious Injuries.
Hmm, I'm in danger of convincing myself here.
And I'd be tempted to ignore the M:6 altogether as with only two skill lists, Sprint is likely just a matter of time. Or start M at 6 and just ban Sprint because 18" charges on a 4'sq table is beyond rude. Ask anyone facing the Fleet rule in 3rd Ed 40k on a GW store table.
The only thing left to work out would be credit cost of recruitment. Bearing in mind that purestrains come with a 5+ armour save, ignore pinning and all psychology bar being Broken, as well as causing fear. And any cap on numbers.

What I had been going to say before I got carried away with the above, was that the simpler option (and viable with my list-in-progress) might be to ban purestrains but hybridise the purestrain and max-human stats for the highest values of each, producing:
I've not raised M because of Sprint, nor raised A to 4 as -with my list at least- the option to buy Extra Arm twice would actually give such a hybrid 6(!!!) attacks off a stat of A:3. Which is something I confess I had overlooked. Even starting at 0xp though, no model could reach this stat-block (24 increases from my Hybrid stats but only 20 available advances). What you'd get instead would be hybrids with varying similarities to purestrains in their capabilities.
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Jan 12, 2014
I just got back into Necromunda but before I stopped last year I was using the "For The Father" rules from this thread here:-

I feel like they are a step up from the "Terror in the Hive" rules and they also allow for Purestrain experience gain. Of all the Genestealer Gang Rules I've seen here on Yaktribe these ones are my favourite. They seem to really capture the essence of a Genestealer Cult in a Necromunda scenario where so many fail.

Tbh any real true-blooded Genestealer Cult fan could not even fathom the idea of having a Genestealer Cult gang without an actual Genestealer in it... lol ;)
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Executive Officer in charge of Radishes
Staff member
Necromunda Custodian
Tribe Council
Sep 15, 2012
Alnwick, Northumberland
Yeah I have those rules saved though I've never had the chance to play them. They were a lot of fun to read though and I agree they seem the most rounded and in character of all the cult rules I've seen. @Ambience327 did a great job writing and formatting them!

Crucium Giger

New Member
Jul 29, 2015
Sorry if this has been answered elsewhere but is the For The Father! list for (or usable) with ORB? I've just picked up a copy of the hardback rules (I haven't read the rules since '95 so this is all new to me again) and I plan on using them for my Malignancy force.
Jan 12, 2014
I think they were written with the LRB in mind; I use them with the NCE. Only real difference was weapon prices.

I dare say you could easily use them with ORB regardless. I can't see that it'd cause issues to do so...
Jan 12, 2014
Awesome; have fun!

Also, if you get a chance, it'd be good if you could give feedback on the list in that thread after you've played a few games so folks can compare and improve it where necessary.

Yeah of all the Genie Cult lists I've seen the For The Father ones are the best...! Should really see about getting them added to the Vault...
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