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Warhammer 40k Tyranids’ Parasite of Mortrex is pure xenomorph

Games Workshop's latest Warhammer 40k Tyranids model - an updated, plastic Parasite of Mortrex - looks, sounds, and acts like Alien's xenomorph

Warhammer 40k Tyranids Parasite of Mortrex model - Warhammer Community photo showing the new Parasite of Mortrex, including wings and Ovipositor

Warhammer 40k‘s Tyranids army is getting a brand new plastic version of its “legendary” Parasite of Mortrex monster model alongside the impending Tyranids codex release, Games Workshop has revealed. It comes complete with revolting in-game rules that’ll allow it to infect enemy units with parasites, dealing them Mortal Wounds over time and – if you’re lucky – causing Ripper Swarm units to burst out of them, John Hurt-style, to join the battle.

Revealed in a Warhammer Community article on Tuesday, the Tyranids’ Parasite of Mortrex looks to be an all-round powerful tabletop unit, with a flying move of 16 inches; Weapon Skill 2+; and six Strength-five attacks base, as well as the SYNAPSE keyword, which GW is hoping will make it a viable leader for “airborne swarms” of Gargoyles and other Tyranid flying units.

But its signature move is going to be descending upon tough enemies holding objectives, and unleashing the full body horror powers of Alien’s Xenomorph on them – using a Barbed Ovipositor to fill enemies with parasites that’ll not only kill them slowly, but also turn off their Objective Secured ability (thanks to the ‘It Itches’ rule below), and give you chances to keep spawning free Ripper Swarms, for as long as the target unit remains infected and taking wounds. It’s deeply gnarly, Tyranid-ish stuff.

The ability’s overall Mortal Wounds (MW) potential is rather scary – you’ll inflict one MW when the parasites first enter their target, then another D3 MW on each of your opponent’s Command Phases, until they roll a 1-3 get rid of the beasties in their belly (at which point they take a final D3 MW, then feel a bit better). For every 2MW dealt, a newly bred Ripper Swarm surges out of the unfortunate enemy’s body to join the fight. H.R. Giger, eat your heart out.

This fresh Tyranids model reveal article comes the day after GW revealed the Tyranids codex cover art and the make-up of the new Tyranids Combat Patrol starter box. We don’t have a confirmed release date for either yet, but, whenever they come along, it’s likely the Parasite of Mortrex will arrive alongside them.

The Parasite of Mortrex isn’t a new addition to Warhammer 40k’s Tyranids army per se – it featured in the 5th edition Tyranids codex, released in 2010, and has a place of honour in Hive Fleet lore –  but hasn’t previously had its own tabletop model or in-game rules.

Warhammer 40k Tyranids Parasite of Mortrex model - Warhammer Community photo showing the new Parasite of Mortrex from close up angles

Need more battlefield intel on the bio-menace of the Hive Fleets? Check out our Warhammer 40k Tyranids guide. Alternatively, widen your scanners to learn about all the Warhammer 40k xenos factions.