Top Three AoS Lists for Border War 2023


This is the top three AoS lists for Border War 2023 that took place in the Albury, Australia on the 29th and 30th of April. It involved 43 players vying to be crowned champion in a 5-game tournament.

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The Top Three AoS Lists

Allegiance: Kharadron Overlords
Sky Port: Barak Zilfin
– Mortal Realm: Ghur
– Grand Strategy: Rule the Skies
– Triumphs: Inspired

Kharadron Code
Artycle: Settle The Grudges
– Amendment: Prosecute Wars With All Haste
– Footnote: There’s No Reward Without Risk

Arkanaut Admiral (125)*
– Command Trait: Stormcaller
– Aspect of the Champion: Leadership of the Alpha
Aetheric Navigator (85)*
Artefact: Voidstone Orb
Endrinmaster with Endrinharness (90)*

9 x Endrinriggers (360)*
1x Grapnel Launchers
– Reinforced x 2
10 x Arkanaut Company (100)*
– 1x Skypikes
– 1x Light Skyhooks
– 1x Aethermatic Volley Guns
Arkanaut Frigate (300)*
Main Gun: Heavy Sky Cannon
10 x Grundstok Thunderers (270)*
2x Aetheric Fumigators
– 2x Decksweepers
– 2x Aethercannons
– 2x Grundstok Mortars
– Reinforced x 1

1 x Grundstok Gunhauler (170)*
Main Gun: Sky Cannon
– Gunhauler Modifications: Zonbarcorp ‘Debtsettler’ Spar Torpedo

Arkanaut Ironclad (500)*
Main Gun: Great Sky Cannon
– Major Installation: Zonbarcorp ‘Dealbreaker’ Battle Ram

*Battle Regiment

Total: 2000 / 2000

Sometimes, it pays off to lean into the highlights of a new Battletome, and Luca Foerster’s Barak Zilfin Kharadron Overlords list does this perfectly. One of the biggest loses to Kharadron Overlords was the loss of Aethergold in the new book, which was often used for an on-demand +1 to wound, Luca offsets this by taking the new Settle The Grudges Artycle which gives all Kharadron Overlords units a static +1 to wound against a target chosen at the start of the game. Less versatile, for sure, but often more impactful when multiple units are needed to ensure that something is made dead.

Luca starts things off with a classic Admiral taking Stormcaller and Leadership of the Alpha. Stormcaller allows for the rerolling of dice from the Navigator’s Read the Winds ability, which I will talk about in a moment. He follows that up with an Endrinmaster with Endrinharness, which pays the tax of allowing Endrinriggers to be battleline. Lastly, for heroes, he has taken a Navigator who gets an unbind/dispel and is carrying a Voidstone Orb, which is a once per game Artefact that will auto-unbind a spell. A powerful deterrent against trying to snipe heroes with spells or setting up crippling -1 to hit/wound auras. However, the real power of the Navigator is its Read the Winds ability, which allows it to roll six dice and then choose an effect. It can choose to either pick an enemy unit for each “one” it rolls to deal d3 mortal wounds and half movement until its next hero phase or for each “six” pick a friendly Boat and immediately normal move it D3+3 inches. The extra movement is great, but the real value is crippling fast enemy units, and combined with the reroll from the Admiral’s Stormcaller ability it can flat out win games by crippling the opponent’s ability to advance up the board to contest objectives or complete battle tactics. Sometimes, the best way to win is to not allow your opponent to play, and I especially feel for the poor Sons of Behemat player who ran afoul of this.

Moving onto his troop selection, Luca has taken a sample of the Kharadron mainstays. He has a double reinforced unit of Endrinriggers, which brings a bucket of rend -2 to the game both at range and in melee. They can also heal the boats, but that is just a bonus. The native rend -2 is the real benefit here. Next up, we have a common theme within Kharadron in this edition, the extremely efficient reinforced Thunderers with Special Weapons. They bring a massive amount of firepower at shotgun range, but back that up with a native 3+ save, 20 wounds, debuffs, and even mortal wounds in melee. They are a classic, “Move Me” objective holder with just enough range that they can not be ignored. A unit of Arkanauts rounds out the troop selection.

To finish off the list, Luca brought one of each of the Kharadron boats. An Ironclad toting around the Battle Ram to combo with the once per game 3d6 charge from his Footnote, a battleline Frigate courtesy of Barak Zilfin, and a cheeky Gunhauler to give the larger boats a 6+ ward save and a fast mover to cap objectives later in the game. He packages all of this into a one-drop Battle Regiment at an even 2000 points.

This is a classic list that can do well at range and in melee. It presents a difficult challenge for opponents as the Battletome Battle Tactics allow it to avoid interaction but greatly punishes opponents who spread out to score their own. Combined with Luca’s outstanding play, I pity the poor souls who had to face it.


Allegiance: Ogor Mawtribes
Mawtribe: Boulderhead
– Mortal Realm: Ghur
– Grand Strategy: No Place for the Weak
– Triumphs: Bloodthirsty

Frostlord on Stonehorn (450)
Artefact: Vial of Manticore Venom (Universal Artefact)
– Mount Trait: Rockmane Elder
Frostlord on Thundertusk (400)
Mount Trait: Matriarch
Huskard on Thundertusk (330)*
Blood Vulture
– Mount Trait: Rimefrost Hide
– Prayer: Keening Gale
Icebrow Hunter (120)*
– Command Trait: Touched by the Everwinter
– Prayer: Pulverising Hailstorm
– Aspect of the Champion: Leadership of the Alpha

6 x Mournfang Pack (510)*
Gargant Hackers
– Reinforced x 2
2 x Frost Sabres (80)*
2 x Frost Sabres (80)*

*Battle Regiment

Total: 1970 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 2 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 99
Drops: 3

We’ve an absolute legend joining our team for the top three comments this week.

Peter Atkinson (AKA Plastic Craic) has recently made a return with a revamped website and a crack team of top AoS gamers to help him!

Peter Atkinson: Thanks for having me on gents – long time listener, first time caller.

“It’s gotta be Little Lisa Simpson, Springfield’s answer to a question NOBODY ASKED!”

– Ned Flanders

Well he’s pulled one out of the bag here, hasn’t he? The Thundertusk answers the question nobody asked, namely “how can I do chip damage to a chaff unit in the shooting phase?”. The whole point of shooting is that you get to pick where the damage goes, but the limitations around where (and how much) the Thundertusk can apply its output are usually seen as crippling in the hands of most players.

Well, up steps The Mayor to show he’s not most players.

The Factory-standard Frostlord is of course present, with the Manticore Venom artefact being a slightly unorthodox pick, but all Stonehorns will take consistency of output where they can get it. I like it. In fact, I might just copy it.

Then Mat goes off script with the double Tusks: one as a Frostlord for the 3+ save and at least some kind of melee output, and the other packing the 5++ ward Trait. Coupled with the Boulderhead extra wounds and neg -1 to wound on the big lad, Mat has layered up the durability buffs in this army, but he’s done the same with his charge bonuses too. Both Frostlords add stacking +1s to charge in an aura, and the 3rd Mount Trait does the same (for Thundertusks only), so they’re all supporting each other to charge at +2” or +3”. It won’t boost the charge mortals, but it can blow the game wide open with some unexpected long bombs.

And how about those Mournfang? He has the prayer for extra movement on them, so with dual Frosties nearby and their native plus 1” to charge, they’re often gonna be zipping around at +3” to move and +3” to charge. This unit is a ride-on lawnmower, and your army is the mole poking its head out of the ground.

They give zero fucks about overwatch too, so with all their charge mortals added in, KO might not be as scary as you think; and speaking of KO, those Thunderers make a prime target for Thundertusk shooting. You don’t want the pricks rallying back, but bringing them into combat means they can’t use Rally anyway.

In fact, expensive combat units with good saves are where Thundertusks want to be generally, and there’s a lot of that in the meta right now; so if they will ever have a time to shine this is it. They won’t go too badly into Khorne’s Mighty Skullcrushers for example, with a double-tap putting enough mortals into them that a decent charge or two could clean them up without even worrying about that stupid 0+ save. OBR springs to mind too.

In practice though, I think I’d use the Thundertusks just as often to bludgeon through a support hero. 2 mortals, another 2 mortals, Blood Vulture, bam. That’s a 5-wound hero gone. The chances of spiking off a 6-wound hero are not trivial, and across two turns of shooting it’s very likely they’re toast. Efficient sniping? No, but sometime’s a Tyrant’s gotta do what a Tyrant’s gotta do. And something like a Krulghast or Death Frenzy can just switch off your win condition, so efficiency goes out the window at that point and you just do what you have to.

The kitty cats are an ace in the hole, popping up to secure Desecrate and then (because they can’t be shot in cover) usually forcing a far-more-expensive combat unit to hit reverse gear and clear them up. They’re not half bad at soaking up a mortal-wound overwatch too.

I know Mat has owned this army for aeons but it rarely sees the tabletop in competitive play. So I’ll be honest, I looked at this list and thought Mat was bringing a palette-cleanser pick for his hometown GT, so he could relax into his games with no pressure.

Well the more you look at it, the better it gets. It’s surprisingly strong into a couple of dominant new books and you write it off at your peril. Strutting onto the podium with such a unique list is a great achievement – well done mate.

If you found this write-up informative, check out our site over at Plastic Craic where we’re smashing out regular, high-quality Age of Sigmar coverage. See you there.


Allegiance: Slaves to Darkness
Damned Legion: Knights of the Empty Throne
– Grand Strategy: Take What’s Theirs
– Triumphs: Inspired

Archaon the Everchosen (860)*
The Lore of the Damned: Daemonic Speed
Chaos Sorcerer Lord (120)*
– Command Trait: Master of Magic
– Artefact: Chaos Familiar
– Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch
– The Lore of the Damned: Daemonic Speed
– Aspect of the Champion: Fuelled by Ghurish Rage
Chaos Sorcerer Lord (120)*
Mark of Chaos: Nurgle
– The Lore of the Damned: Chaotic Conduit

6 x Varanguard (580)*
5x Fellspear
– 1x Daemonforged Blade
– Mark of Chaos: Khorne
– Reinforced x 1
9 x Corvus Cabal (80)*
Mark of Chaos: Undivided
5 x Chaos Knights (220)*
Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch
– Ensorcelled Banner: The Blasted Standard

*Battle Regiment

Total: 1980 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 1 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 89
Drops: 1

Ok folks, we’ve reached the Slaves sass threshold. What that means is we’ve now seen enough good results, with similar-enough lists, in a short enough time period, that I get to be a little bitch about them.

So what we have here is lots of the two good units in the book (cavalry) in the sub-faction that makes cavalry able to run and charge, with Archaon slapped on top for good measure. Archaon does offer a lot of tactical flexibility thanks to his picking a mark before deployment and not in the list building stage, and even though he’s always been frustratingly easy to kill and frustratingly bad at killing when I’ve run him, when he inevitably gets the Nurgle mark he’s definitely an annoying man-mountain that can stomp an objective while the 6 Varanguard do their thing.

I’ve also spotted that the Chaos Knights have been marked Tzeentch so that they can be yoinked around a bit by the Tzeentch Sorceror Lord. I wonder if that ever actually went off? At least it’s new!


Allegiance: Stormcast Eternals
Stormhost: Hammers of Sigmar (Scions of the Storm)
– Grand Strategy: Take What’s Theirs
– Triumphs: Inspired

Karazai, The Scarred (550)*
Lord-Castellant (160)*
Artefact: Gryph-feather Charm (Galletian Champion)
Lord-Relictor (150)*
– Command Trait: High Priest
– Prayer: Translocation
– Aspect of the Champion: Tunnel Master

4 x Dracothian Guard Fulminators (480)*
Reinforced x 1
5 x Liberators (120)*
Heavens-wrought Weapon and Shield
10 x Vanquishers (220)*
Reinforced x 1

6 x Praetors (280)*
Reinforced x 1

*Battle Regiment

Holy Command: Call for Aid

Total: 1960 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 3 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 104
Drops: 1

Joel’s a really knowledgeable Stormcast Player and has been running a version of this list for most of the edition. You can check out the development of the list and how it plays on his channel Measured Gaming. Some of the most entertaining Battle Reps you’ll watch, but I warn you, it’s very definitely NSFW.

The concept is simple, go first and jam Karazai into something. He is either going to be a wrecking ball or serve as a fantastic distraction (you can’t let him run around). There are still 2 Galetian Champions for battle tactics, the Lord Castellant is one of the strongest here, with a 5+ ward to make him harder to shift. Scions of the Storm lets you get him where you want him if you keep him off the board. There is the choice of either the Vanquishers or the Fulminators to accompany him. 7 Units, only half are allowed in the storm chamber, giving a few options. The Praetors are along to provide their bodyguard to Karazai. Staying close to Karazai is the trick though.

The Praetors are probably a surprise for anyone who hasn’t played against them. With 3 attacks and 2 damage, they have solid output, especially into 4+ and 5+ saves. If your army relies on a big block of something or a couple of models, Karazai is your worst nightmare. Most of the lists Joel faced suffered from that issue or would struggle to affect Karazai as MSU (Bladegheists). If you have a lot of threats and enough units though, you can overwhelm this list and score where they aren’t. I’ll let Kieron cover how the Skaven list worked against Karazai. I’m predicting disposable clan rats helped clog up the works.

If you have the chance it’s worth watching how Joel plays this list, it’s fun if nothing else. He’s also one of the few people that seem to be perfectly fine with the standard Liberator.


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