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Shrieking Harpy

Shrieking Harpy

Shrieking Harpy

Type: Army Unit
Faction: Tyranids
Cost: 6
Attack Value: 2
Hit Points: 5
Command Icons: 2
Traits: Creature. Kraken. Elite.

Combat Reaction: After this unit is declared as an attacker at an infested planet, exhaust each enemy non-Elite army unit and token unit at this planet.

Set: The Great Devourer Number: 32 Quantity: 3
Illustrator: Alberto Bontempi
Recent Decks Using This Card:
Want to build a deck using this card? Check out the Warhammer 40,000: Conquest Deck Builder!


This card could be good, but there is too much that needs to happen.  Infestation, which isn't the easiest thing unless you build a weak deck for it.  This card could be more viable in the future, but as it stands, where are you going to get the money for this?  Most of the Tyranid units are already too expensive with little command presence.  While on paper, the card looks great, it lacks the viability with the current card selection.

Regenerating Harpies are really good.  Harpies at an infested planet are really good even without Regeneration.  Regenerating Harpies at the "whoever wins this battle wins the game" planet and that planet is infested...  opponent scoops.


Sure, they're expensive, but treat yourself.  Live a little.

Regenerating Shrieking Harpies at an infested planet that are Suffering are a little sad.

Regenerating Shrieking Harpies at an infested planet that are Suffering are a little sad.


But only a little sad, as they're still negating all those attacks, and you can still attack with your other stuff.


This, to me, is the clear Tyranid Elite of choice. It is expensive, for sure, but its a game-closing move of unequalled efficiency. Its just so incredibly hard for an opponent to deal with, as 5HP + Flying + only enemy warlord gets to attack = almost impossible to shift without card effects.


The mere existence of Shrieking Harpy has made me add three Inquisitorial Fortresses to all my AM decks. 

Well, it's 6 resources worth of attack power that's nullified for 1-resource for the duration of the game. Then there's Terror, Klaivex, etc, obviously. It also doesn't affect tokens like Khymera. (Edit: I can't read.) So the question is how much are you locking down for 6 resources and a tempo each round as Kith may only need to defeat everything else at the planet to be victorious.


It's easy to fixate on upside and how it could be game ending in the right circumstances because units like this are exciting. We are (myself included) so often seduced by the dream of having an unstoppable monster in combat that we neglect to consider the possible counter-play from our opponent and how common, cheap and effective it can often be.


Markis also does a lot of work shutting down a Harpy. Having it locked down for two or three rounds usually gives sufficient time to hammer the opponent into submission. Spore Sacs are usually a lot more scary and a higher priority target for a Fortress since it's one of the only ways to reliably prevent them from firing.

Of course, you're right, though the corollary is that its easy to fixate on the answers to a difficult situation, and then conclude that the situation isn't difficult because those answers exist. 


My friend took Old One Eye / Venomthrope to tourney last month (just store level at Gamerz Nexus, but there's some great players there) and went undefeated to victory, and his deck's closing power is almost entirely based around Shrieking Harpy. Sure, thats not the whole of the deck, but the presence of 3x Harpy in that deck definitely increases its chances of winning matches.


That to me makes it a 5/5 card at present: the option is there to run 3 copies, and the best thing to do is run 3 copies.

Sometimes people talk about this game as if Dark Eldar are the only faction.  I refuse to live in constant fear of Klaivex Warleader, and besides, don't you know that wins with Kith only count for half?

    • Asklepios and Gosgosh like this
This guy isn't just great vs DE though. Harpy does an amazing job vs Eldar and Space Marines as they often rely on 3 or 4 cost units to do the heavy lifting.
Totally agree that Harpy is an awesome card. It's proven to be a game-winner for me on more than one occasion, and I think Harpy + OOE + Venomthrope Polluter go together like port + Stilton and a pair of comfy slippers.... Of course in order to deploy Harpy at a suitable point of the game (and presumably have a reasonable degree of infestation going on at the same time) then - Y'varn aside - you need to be doing fairly well in the command phase, which for a Tyranid deck isn't always easy... ... Which is why Kith decks are a good antidote to Harpy (Resource/card choke, Archon's terror, Klaivex... take your pick). The main problem now is that this card has clearly been deemed enough of a threat that non-Tyranid players are devising ways of mitigating its impact - so these glorious days of beautiful Regenerating Harpies flying around at the top of the Traxis Sector food chain may be short-lived....
Really, this is one of the easiest units to protect from Klaivex, at least for a little while. I think too many people just accept Klaivex as a fait accompli and forget to play around it. That's not to say you'll be safe all the time, but you can do the following...

1) If you trigger the ability theres usually not much readied and able to hit you
2) You're flying. DE units tend to hit flyers for 1 or 2. Use shields. No Klaivex.
3) If you have initiative you can trigger Regeneration (if you have it) *before* your opponent has a chance to Klaivex.
4) You have a Synapse creature. If you picked anything with a hammer, especially if you picked Lictor or Polluter, you can deny your opponent resources, potentially still at two key planets, even if he's actually choking you. Klaivex might be too strong for its cost, but it does still have a cost, and it's a nice high one so make use of that.

Also Y'varn appears in a lot more than half of all games. You have a lot of nasty units in the 3-6 cost range. The DE player can't Klaivex everything.

Den can screw the harpy, but Awakening Cavern and Dark Cunning are 4 cards in your deck that can let your bug guy deal with that, to Den's 1. Spore Sacs, HVC are also tasty vs DE as is the threat of Kith bloodying.
    • Atrus, MrWizard, Horus2 and 1 other like this

It also doesn't affect tokens like Khymera.


I can't read. Nevermind.

Fair points GkZhukov re Klaivex, and thanks for the Kith tips - I think I've been punished by Kith so many times ( albeit by a great player) that I've become over-awed by it. Unfortunately my main opponent will be reading this too, so he knows that I now know, and no doubt he'll find new ways to punish me...

 I think too many people just accept Klaivex as a fait accompli and forget to play around it. That's not to say you'll be safe all the time, but you can do the following...


Wise words. 200% agree. Instead of just call a card OP, or broken, is better to learn to play against it. In my experience Klaivex is a necesity for dark eldar, not an OP card, and can be evaded/played around it. Like many other cards like Indomitable, Nullify, Doom, etc


About the Harpy, for me it is one of those cards why I like to play Predation, and Dark Cunning. Nasty, like most of the Elites.

Nov 22 2015 12:07 PM
Another reason to play this card is that you get to yell "Release the Kraken!".
    • Ultramarine, MightyToenail and Horus2 like this

So as Caldera is my regular opponent, I can report that he took on your advice, and added two copies of Dark Cunning. In my game of Eldorath/DE vs that deck last night, the regenerating shrieking harpy came in. He uses dark cunning, I use Archon's Terror. Not to worry, he uses Dark Cunning on the regenerating hormagaunt. I Nullify.


Of course, all this is diminishing the fearsomeness of that deck. Basically, if you don't have the means to directly remove a regenerating Harpy from the combat, its near impossible to stop. To date, only my Eldorath and Kith decks have been able to stop that deck, which as a mainly Zarathur player I find a little annoying...

So glad this is a Combat Reaction and not a Reaction. Would be OP otherwise. :P

So glad this is a Combat Reaction and not a Reaction. Would be OP otherwise. :P


Only just noticed that. Maybe they were initially thinking to add in effects that allow you to "attack" outside of the combat phase?

I guess we'll never know ....

Sep 17 2016 12:15 PM

Shrieking Harpy may be Omega's only answer for Heldrake right now.  Too bad the ability has no effect on elites but the fact that it's flying gives me hope.  Put a Ymgarl Factor on it and go to town.  My future Omega build will involve lots of infestation (Nesting Chamber, Spore Chimney) back by STC and Digestion Pool to fight those elites with lots of elites of my own.  

Hmm, why Shrieking Harpy specifically?


In general, I'd say that fighting a Heldrake with elites is a terrible idea. You're gonna lose. But it's quite easy to kill with a handful of small cheap units.


Alternatively, save up a bit of money, ambush in an Ymgarl Factor when it's your turn to attack, and hit it for a million damage.

To get flying yourself, Brood Chamber might be interesting. I was considering it myself.

To get flying yourself, Brood Chamber might be interesting. I was considering it myself.


I've had an on-again, off-again relationship with Brood Chamber for a while, and the problem is that while it can be absolutely brilliant in some situations, the vast majority of the time it's just a dead card. The problem is that a lot of the nasty elites we're seeing these days don't have keywords (or if they do, it's something like Mobile, which is useless as far as Brood Chamber is concerned). If you're in a meta with a lot of Chaos elites, though, it might be worth it (since there are some tasty targets for keywords there).


On the topic of Harpy, Ymgarl Factor on it can be incredibly nasty (particularly if it's a single-elite backed up by weenies battle). I'm not sure if it's the best way to deal with a Heldrake, but honestly it's not like Omega has a whole lot of other options for that...