The Tallyman (not to be confused with the Tallyman of Nurgle) is the (in)famous chump from the Death Guard trailer that we all know and love. He is quite known for the fact that, in the grimdarkness of the 41st Millennium, the forces of Nurgle somehow still use a fucking abacus of all things. Anyway, the Tallymen act as spiritual leaders of the Death Guard, and are rough analogues of the regular old vanilla Dark Apostles.
Like the Plague Surgeon, the Tallyman is one of the few releases in the new Death Guard range that actually has a simple, reasonable name, and not one that sounds like it was invented on the spot by a ten-year-old for MAXIMUM COPYRIGHT. However, also like the Plague Surgeon, it got a cheesy character name (Scribbus Wretch) thrown onto its blister pack, presumably so Gee-Dubs could justify sticking a trademark symbol on there.
Part priests, part demagogues, part metaphysical scribes and quartermasters, and part abacus users, these zealots stride to battle festooned with the trappings of their strange craft. Upon their shoulders the Tallymen bear huge vox speakers through which their voices boom. Their incantations are endless, a drone of counting. Tallymen are the preachers of the Sevenfold path, emphasizing the number of Nurgle, seven in all its forms. In the novel, "The Lords of Silence" one of the main characters is a Tallyman, Philemon, who is shown to care for the "Little Lords"(Nurglings) that the Death Guard keep as well as being in charge of capturing daemons to gain infomation from.
But perhaps the most notable feature of the Tallymen are the tomes they carry, filled with the woes inflicted on the enemy and other information relevant to the Plague God. This is when they actually use their stupid looking abacus. They count spent shells, wounds inflicted, brothers resurrected, disease spread and the number of screams that can be heard. They count the number of flies in the air and the number of slain. Always they tally the unholy seven, and in so doing they somehow invoke Nurgle’s boon. Nurgle’s faithful are empowered and inspired by the Tallyman’s count. Yes, you heard us right. These guys boost military effectiveness with the power of MATH! Who knew the children of Nurgle were such bookworms, eh? Anyway, they don't use math, they use numerology, always trying to find the number 7 as a pattern in the chaos around them - something which is always possible, thanks to confirmation bias.
Eh-hum, anyways, on the battlefield, Tallymen are terrors, yet at all other times their order is isolated and secretive. Long ago, Mortarion entrusted them with the numerological codes to unlock the hidden vaults on the Plague Planet where the Death Guard keep their most appalling viral weapons. Such strains are precious and irreplaceable, and not lightly do the Tallymen part with them. The Death Guard Lord who demands access to these horrific instruments of destruction had best be prepared to pay a price to a Tallyman. Oftentimes this price involves singing "Tally me banana" while doing a rather odd dance ritual.
The Tallyman is a pretty good support unit for the Death Guard army. The reason you want to keep the Tallyman around is that he lets you re-roll failed attacks in the Fight phase, Dark Apostle style. (Do keep in mind that unlike the Apostle, the Tallyman is rather weak in combat; think of him more as a Nurglite cheerleader urging his team on.) As a nice bonus, as long as he's on the table you roll 2d6 each time you spend one (or more) command point(s) on a stratagem: on a roll of Nurgle's sacred "7" (the most common roll on two dice with a 16.67% chance of getting it) you get the spent CP(s) back as a gift from the jolly old fellow as the Tallyman's tally checks out.
For some, the Tallymen may be a more useful unit than the Plague Surgeon, it all depends whether you want to boost the resilience or the close quarters capacities of your army depending on your playstyle. Of course, nothing prevents you to take both!
|Forces of the Death Guard|
|Leaders:|| Chaos Lord - Daemon Prince - Sorcerer - Chaos Champion |
Malignant Plaguecaster - Plague Surgeon - Tallymen
|Troops:|| Biologus Putrifier - Blightlord Terminator - Chaos Spawn - Deathshroud |
Foul Blightspawn - Noxious Blightbringer - Plague Marines - Possessed
|Vehicles:||Chaos Land Raider - Helbrute - Plaguereaper - Predator - Rhino|
|Flyers:||Storm Eagle - Stormbird - Thunderhawk|
| Blight Drone - Defiler - Foetid Bloat-Drone |
Myphitic Blight-Hauler - Plague Hulk - Plagueburst Crawler
|Daemons:||Beast of Nurgle - Nurgling - Plaguebearer|
|Auxiliaries:||Cultists - Pestigors - Plague Zombie - Poxwalkers|
|Allies:||Chaos Daemons - Chaos Space Marines|