Top Three AoS Lists for US Open: Kansas City

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This is the Top Three AoS Lists for the Kansas City Open that took place in USA on 29tg and 30th October. It involved 79 players vying to be crowned champion in a 5 game tournament.

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The Top Three AoS Lists

Allegiance: Daughters of Khaine
Temple: Zainthar Kai
– Mortal Realm: Ghur
– Grand Strategy: Bloodthirsty Zealots
– Triumphs: Inspired

Leaders
The Shadow Queen (340)*
Morathi-Khaine (340)*
Bloodwrack Medusa (130)*
General
– Command Trait: Zealous Orator
– Artefact: Crown of Woe
– Universal Spell Lore: Flaming Weapon

Battleline
15 x Blood Stalkers (540)*
Reinforced x 2
10 x Blood Sisters (280)*
Reinforced x 1
10 x Witch Aelves (115)*
Sacrificial Knives and Blade Bucklers

Units
5 x Khinerai Heartrenders (95)*
5 x Khinerai Heartrenders (95)*

Endless Spells & Invocations
Chronomantic Cogs (40)

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment

Total: 1975 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 3 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 94
Drops: 1

Danny: Gavin Grigar is not an uncommon name to see in these parts, but it’s especially nice to see it followed by a complete lack of Spinedog (RIP)

Turns out two big monsters with a timed-invincibility was quite appealing? Anyway – this list reverts to type, Morathi and the bow sneks, 10 stabbers, and 2×5 Khinerai. In case you’re not familiar with the flygirls – they’re perfectly good for 95 pts as a harassment unit, but their true value comes in unlocking a DoK specific battle-tactic, to drop two of them down and use their ‘fire and move’ ability – so, essentially an auto-score.

The beauty of them in this season is that they’re then perfectly positioned to score Barge Through in the following turn unless the opponent dedicates resources to dealing with them, which would usually pull them out of position in so doing. And if they don’t…they’re probably nicely set up for objective stealing and Desecrate too. It’s a really strong little scoring combo for 190 pts and a lot to deal with while you have slithery hammers coming atcha in the meantime.

GavGar took down not one but two tough mirror matches (including Thomas, below), not one but two SoB and a cheeky Legion list on his way to 5-0 – congrats, and good to see ‘pure’ DoK representing again.

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Army Faction: Maggotkin of Nurgle
Subfaction: Drowned Men
– Grand Strategy: Blessed Desecration
– Triumph: Bloodthirsty

LEADERS
Lord of Afflictions (210)*
General
– Command Traits: Overpowering Stench
– Dolorous Tocsin
– Artefacts of Power: The Splithorn Helm
Bonding: Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur

BATTLELINE
Pusgoyle Blightlords (440)*
– 2 x Dolorous Tocsin
Pusgoyle Blightlords (440)*
– 2 x Dolorous Tocsin
Pusgoyle Blightlords (220)*
Dolorous Tocsin
Pusgoyle Blightlords (220)*
Dolorous Tocsin
Ungors (65)*
Brayhorn
– Banner Bearer
– Ungor Blade and Half-shield

BEHEMOTH
Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur (400)*

CORE BATTALIONS
*Battle Regiment

TOTAL POINTS: 1995/2000

Peter: Rather than us explaining how Nurgle Flies and a Spinedog work for the umpteenth time. Emma Mangels has kindly agree to share her experiences of the tournament instead. Thank you Emma!

Emma Mangels: Since the battlescroll update did not drop in time for the open I figured I would combine the 2 worst things in the game into 1 list. I am very happy they increased the points, but they unfortunately did not address any of the issues with the flies or krondspine in the recent battlescroll. The toughest game I had was round 2, a fly mirror with Be’lakor. I’ve played 2 mirrors before at ACO, so I’ve already had some reps in mirrors. I knew it was going to be a dice game, and that my chance of making a run for 1st was already gone due to the mirror match (the mirror is low scoring). I used my pregame move to set up for the strongest counterplay, which included pregame moving 4 flies wholly within 6 of a garrisonable terrain piece and using 2×2 flies on other side to lure my opponent in. Yes, that is right, I garrisoned a unit of 4 flies. I gave up some points in the first 2 turns, but it was about securing every advantage I could since his list had the early edge of 1 more fly and the Be’lakor to shut down my Krondspine. Had a wild moment where I sent my level 1 Krondspine into a single fly (was a 4 man unit) to kill or prevent it from rallying next turn. I did 0 damage, it did 5 damage back and I rolled a 5 killing the Krondspine. He then rolled 2 6s on his 3 dice rally and brought back 2 flies. In the end I was able to muscle out a win with a hard choice top of 5 of going for a battle tactic but opening the door to a VERY low but possible chance my opponent could pick up an extra point (idols) to go ahead OR to just drop the tactic and guarantee the win. I elected to secure the win by tying him up with Nurglings I had summoned to prevent Barge and running away with the last fly unit which was an idol to prevent him from taking the +1 point.

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Army Faction: Daughters of Khaine
Army Subfaction: Hagg Nar
– Grand Strategy: Bloodthirsty Zealots
– Triumphs: Indomitable

LEADER
1 x Slaughter Queen (130)
Prayers: Sacrament of Blood
1 x Hag Queen on Cauldron of Blood (270)***
Artefacts: Arcane Tome
– Spells: Mindrazor
– Prayers: Covenant of the Iron Heart
1 x High Gladiatrix (90)***
Artefacts: Crown of Woe
1 x Melusai Ironscale (115)***
General
– Command Traits: Zealous Orator

BATTLELINE
10 x Sisters of Slaughter (135)*
Kruiplash and Bladed Buckler
10 x Sisters of Slaughter (135)*
Kruiplash and Bladed Buckler
30 x Witch Aelves (345)*
Hag
– 6 x Death Pennant Bearer
– 6 x Hornblower
– Sciansá and Bladed Buckler
10 x Blood Sisters (280)**
10 x Blood Sisters (280)**

BEHEMOTH
1 x Avatar of Khaine (155)

INVOCATION
1 x Heart of Fury (45)

CORE BATTALIONS:
*Expert Conquerors
**Bounty Hunters
***Command Entourage – Magnificent

TOTAL POINTS: (1980/2000)

Danny: ALSO dropping Spinedog – praise be! – is another familiar name. Thomas however has opted for the increasingly (albeit slowly) popular Norathi list variation, dropping the big shadow momma in favour of loads more bodies and overlapping synergies.

There’s a lot more going on than maybe meets the eye to this kind of list. It centers around the Cauldron of Blood with Hag Queen – an excellent utility piece that radiates a +1 save aura and is a ‘tanky’ (in DoK terms – 13 wounds!) platform for some key enhancements – and more importantly, casting Heart of Fury on a 2+ (+1 to prayers from…itself!).

Heart of Fury is utterly key here – reducing melee damage by 1 in an aura – to keeping the big blob (and more besides) of Witches alive. Combined with the 4+ rally, it really takes a lot to chew through them, especially as Thom has opted for bladed bucklers, putting them on a 5+ that also reflects a MW back with a 6+ save roll. While supported by the buffs of the Gladiatrix and the Avatar (including the one riding shotgun on the cauldron), that blob is also putting out 61 attacks at 2/2/-2/1.

The 2x 10 Sisters of Slaughter benefit from all the same buffs, but the reason you take them instead of Witches is their eligibility to fight within 6″ (and pile in the extra 3″) – allowing you some flexibility with activation.

Interesting, Thom has still included the Ironscale, despite not needing her to make sneks battleline to fill that requirement – she’s an odd duck and often known as a ‘snake tax’, but she does have a command ability to allow one of the 2×10 stab sneks to run and charge – combined with their 8″ move, the +1 to both from the Blood Rites in round 2 – thanks to the +1 to Rites from being Hagg Nar – that gives them some serious slitherin’ speed.

This is looking like the new overall ‘shape’ of a Norathi build, and it’s awesome to see just how viable it is. I would love to have seen the mirror with Gavin!

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Army Faction: Fyreslayers
Army Subfaction: Lofnir
– Grand Strategy: Masters of the Forge
– Triumphs: Inspired

LEADER
1 x Auric Runefather on Magmadroth (360)**
General
– Command Traits: Blood of the Berzerker
– Mount Traits: Coal-heart Ancient
1 x Auric Runemaster (125)**
Artefacts: Volatile Brazier
Prayers: Curse
1 x Battlesmith (150)**
Artefacts: Nulsidian Icon

BATTLELINE
1 x Auric Runeson on Magmadroth (320)*
Ancestral War-axe
– Mount Traits: Flame-scale Youngblood
10 x Vulkite Berzerkers with Fyresteel Handaxes (170)*
Hornblower of Grimnir
– Karl
15 x Hearthguard Berzerkers (480)*
Karl
– Flamestrike Poleaxe
10 x Vulkite Berzerkers with Fyresteel Handaxes (170)***
Hornblower of Grimnir
– Karl
10 x Vulkite Berzerkers with Fyresteel Handaxes (170)***
Hornblower of Grimnir
– Karl

INVOCATION
1 x Molten Infernoth (40)

TERRAIN
1 x Magmic Battleforge (0)

CORE BATTALIONS:
*Bounty Hunters
**Command Entourage – Magnificent
***Expert Conquerors

TOTAL POINTS: (1985/2000)

Peter: As none of us have any real experience with Fyreslayers. Kevin Lathers has agreed to step in and fill in our knowledge gap. Kevin previously wrote a fantastic guide on Fyreslayers which you can read here.

Kevin: Vito’s list is definitely an abnormality in the grand world of Fyreslayer lists. Like any Fyreslayer list, this will play a little different dependent on opponent, it’s the nature of Fyreslayers. A Lofnir list which eschews the normal 3 or 4 magmadroths and only takes two: a Runeson and a Runefather. These are supported with a mix of Vulkite Berserkers and Hearthguard Berserkers.

It still relies on a couple key pieces few Fyreslayers leave home without: A Runemaster chanting the Molten Infernoth for the Grand Strategy; Masters of the Forge may be one of the best GS in the game; and a battlesmith providing its normal role of anti-magic aura and its once per game 5+ ward being extremely powerful into possible double turns.

In play, Vito has a few options at his disposal depending on the opponent and this list is going to be a tide that can wash over anyone underestimating the once per game buffs. Hearthguard Berserkers receive their 4+ ward off any hero, including both magmadroths.

Without a Runesmiter for forward drops, this list will rely on the built in speed of the Magmadroths as well as the Runemaster’s “Ember Storm” prayer to give the Hearthguard or Vulkites run + charge. Further, Vulkites have a built in +1 charge to help get them across the baord.

Vulkites can be both a hammer — having decent damage on the charge with certain runes like the Rune of Searing Heat or Awakened Steel — and a shield, where their fight on death means they turn into an extremely punishing blocker/screen for the Magmadroths. Some of the Vulkites are also in Expert Conquerors forcing opponents to deal with them where they can further act as a quagmire of pain.

Heathguard Berserkers hit very hard and, with Magmadroths being there to provide their ward aura, are freed from the shackles of a foot hero. They can also be given run and charge to keep up with the droths and provide an incredible hammer, netting 10 mortal wounds on average. Or they can be left to guard the backline providing a threat that few things want to deal with.

And all this is followed up with a Runefather which can not only buff the surrounding units with more attacks, but can fight twice once per game. The multitide of infantry shields means the Runefather can be positioned to make full use of the fight twice ability. If played right this ends up with the an incredible wombo combo: The Runefather goes in, pops his Lord of the Lodge ability, the Hearthguard Berserkers charge in getting more swings for 14-16 mortal wounds on average, and the Vulkites come in with a whopping four attacks each under the aura. Meanwhile the Runefather can fight twice into something beefy or important or even into multiple units. If applied at just right time this could feasibly table an opponent or at least remove all of their key pieces.

Final Tournament Placings

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