All posts by dreadmund

How to Leak Games Workshop Rules

Leaking Games Workshop releases early is a time honoured tradition that goes back almost as long as Games Workshop itself. In the early days leaks would be hand carved into clay tablets which would then be sanded down with rough pumice stone to achieve that classic blurry look. These tablets would be passed around surreptitiously in back rooms by Games Workshop employees who desperately wanted you to think they were cool. A blind eye might be turned to these leaks as they helped to meet annual sales targets by convincing impressionable young players that they were absolutely going to need at least 6 Skaven Doomwheels if they want to win games after Christmas . Plus, if they can just be the first player to get them painted up they can establish themselves as a legendary competitive superstar! Just ask the resident old bloke in your gaming club, he’ll tell you. It’s all true.

These days the internet has made the proliferation of leaks much faster and easier. With players desperate to know what’s next for their army the leakers themselves have naturally become very popular and beloved members of the community (citation needed). No doubt you want to get in on this action, and establish yourself as a Warhammer influencer for about two weeks before Games Workshop’s lawyers bring their righteous fury down upon you. Don’t worry friend, we’re here to clue you in on how to make a traditional Warhammer Leak the right way!

Step One: Source your leak

Everyone and their dogs seem to have the inside scoop on some dramatic changes that are just around the corner these days. But unless you’re mates with a member of the rules team or employed somewhere along the distribution network getting your hands on these coveted titbits might seem impossible. Even those who consider themselves active members of the community must stop and wonder sometimes: “where is everyone getting these spicy hot leads?!” Don’t worry friend, it’s not that you are out of the loop. The secret to a truly great leak is being a total, remorseless liar!

How did this image get in here?

Many of these “leaks” are in fact “creative fabrications”. Often the leaks that inflame the community the most are the ones that don’t hold up to even the briefest moment of scrutiny. But that’s fine because the aim has never been to provide people with useful information. The aim is to accumulate clout through constant crashing waves of hype and outrage. Think of it like Fox News for toy soldiers.

So if you don’t have any genuine information to leak, just make something up and credit it to “a reliable source”. Who could dare doubt you with those credentials?!

Step 2: Write your Leak

In our example, I’ll be leaking an update for the fourth Lumineth Realm-Lords battletome. This is perfect, because the mere insinuation that an elf army may receive yet more support is enough to reduce most Warhammer nerds into a frothy puddle of liquid rage. There’s no need to exhaust ourselves by faking an entire book. Just a couple of “facts” taken completely at random will be enough. Behold.

The only question is how many people will bother to read the filename

This is typical of the type of leak you will see in group chats and facebook posts all around the world. It contains just enough information to tantalise, yet is extremely stingy on the specifics leading the reader to speculate wildly for post after glorious post. Make sure to include rules that are both absolutely ludicrous, and yet totally believable coming from a Games Workshop game. If you really want to seem legitimate, sprinkle a few spelling errors and grammatical mistakes in your text because as everyone knows, leakers can’t read.

Step 3: Tart it up

This step is optional, but highly recommended. If you have any graphic design skills let’s put them to work to add an air of authenticity to your work. If you’ve faked your leak entirely then you’re going to need an extreme close up of the rules so you don’t need to include any pictures of new models. However, faking rules for an existing model will look a lot more legitimate. Through fairly simple photo editing I have transposed a new rule onto the warscroll for Ellania and Ellathor. It’s like fan fiction!

Writing rules is so easy, even I could do it!

As well as adding my creative new rule, I’ve gone ahead and added 1 attack to each of their weapon profiles. Like Bob Ross and his trees, this is just a little treat to myself and any eagle eyed readers who are smart enough to notice the difference, but dumb enough to believe it’s true because they saw it on the internet.

Step 4: Blur the F out of it!

A blurry image isn’t just a leaking tradition – it serves a valuable purpose! By lowering the quality of the image we can reduce the tell-tale signs of our photoshop work and help sell the reader a narrative they’ll believe. This wasn’t a malicious attempt to deceive them in order to gain literally minutes of attention. This comes from a diehard fan who infiltrated Games Workshop headquarters to hastily snap a single photo in between dodging security guards and spike traps!

Your method of blurring is unique to you, like an artist’s signature that tells other leakers who’s responsible for this particular pile of steaming hogswollop. You may choose to reduce the image size and increase compression to create plenty of lovely jpeg artefacts obscuring your slightly off-colour font choice. Personally, I love a good picture of a picture. Channel your inner Facebook aunt who has never heard of the print screen button and simply hold your smartphone up to your monitor.

The perfect crime

Part 5: Revel in the Glory of your Instantly Forgettable Nothingburger

All that’s left to do is post your work to the poorly moderated group chat of your choice and watch the community work itself into a collective blather. Enjoy reading arguments over whether its “Games Workshops latest insult to Kruleboyz players” or “a long overdue update to a neglected battletome”. Once that rumour hits YouTube, you’ve made it! You have successfully incepted the internet, and you can rest safe in the knowledge that your contribution has made the community slightly more annoying to be a part of. Good job weirdo.

Coming soon to a 1h 45m long Youtube video on your feed!

(Please note, this post is intended as satire. Everyone please stop lying for clout. It’s so lame.)

Beginner’s Guide to The Disciples of Tzeentch

The new Disciples of Tzeentch tome has arrived! If you’re a collector, you’ve likely already looked into what this book will bring you, but if not you can find out right here! If you’re brand new to Tzeentch, or if you just want to know what kind of mystic filth you’ll be playing down at your local club this October, allow us to fill you in.

Who is Tzeentch?

The chaos god Tzeentch is the herald of change, represented by mutated flesh and gouts of multicoloured flames that “transform” you into piles of ash. He is also a purveyor of both secrets and lies, hatching elaborate plans so convoluted and nefarious that if one seems to have failed he can simply claim that’s how he wanted it to go all along. Oh and he’s really into birds…?

Tzeentch’s followers include his daemonic hordes of imp-like Horrors, fire breathing raincoats inventively called Flamers, and mantaray-like flying beasts called Screamers. On the mortal side you can find the avian beastman Tzaangors, some of whom ride into battle atop daemonic frisbees called Discs of Tzeentch (which are themselves living creatures), and Tzeentch’s human servants the Karic Acolytes who are basically a bunch of bird cosplayers with the physique of a WWE superstar. Wizards of various shapes and sizes also flock (heh) to Tzeentch’s banners, notably the nefarious Gaunt Summoners who transport your slower units around through silver portals and this update’s signature foot-hero model the curseling, who is actually a buy-one-get-one-free champion with 2 heads and the ability to turn his opponent’s spells against them.

Tzeentch only has 2 monsters in the roster, not counting allies from other armies, but they are his greatest servants and extremely powerful Wizards to boot. The Lord of Change is a giant, bird-like daemon who’s mixture of spellcasting, combat potential and manoeuvrability makes them a versatile unit who add a great deal of value to an army. The named version, Kairos Fateweaver, does everything the Lord of Change does but a little better. You should expect to see these centrepiece models as part of many Tzeentch armies.

Coming soon to a table near you

How does Tzeentch play?

Tzeentch’s signature ability is Destiny Dice. At the beginning of the game a Tzeentch player can roll 9 dice and place them to one side. Before making most kinds of rolls the Tzeentch player can choose to expend one or more of the dice from their Destiny Dice and use its result in place of whatever roll they were about to make. This ability is absolutely incredible if used intelligently, and can guarantee success in game-changing plays like making a 12 inch charge to secure an objective or guaranteeing that your general survives by passing a crucial save roll.

Typically any Tzeentch list will include a variety of spellcasters churning out a varied mix of buffs, debuffs and mortal wounds. Every time a spell is successfully cast they also generate fate points which allow them to summon daemonic reinforcements so you should expect their forces to expand as the game goes on. Particularly if your opponent has a lot of wizards too, because even enemy spells will feed into Tzeentch’s summoning pool! They can also start the game with one of their signature endless spells already on the field and unable to be dispelled for the first battle round, including the powerful Burning Sigil which does mortal wounds to all enemy units in an 18” bubble and has the potential to summon a Chaos Spawn to frustrate your opponent’s movements. Frankly there are too many cool magical abilities and bonuses to list. Basically: they’re really, really good at magic.

Tzeentch has access to a lot of shooting, which combined with their magic output makes them deadly at range. Of course Tzeentch’s units tend to be quite squishy in exchange – unless they are able to buff their survivability with vital spells and abilities. The Arcane Shield spell for example can give a unit a 5+ ward, and all daemon units have a built-in -1 to be hit if they are standing close to a Daemon Hero (including the heroes themselves). Still, even fully buffed Tzeentch isn’t the tankiest faction in the game and you should treat them like the glass cannons they are. Don’t let your units get into a fight and trade blows. Make surgical strikes, only fight battles you know you can win, and abuse your relatively high mobility and summoning to control the board.

Horrors of Tzeentch have a unique ability that allows a Pink horror to split into 2 Blue Horrors upon death, who in turn become Brimstone Horrors when they die. This means that a unit of 10 pink horrors may not seem very imposing at first, but they are actually a whopping 50 wounds worth of meat shields! They are a perfect unit for holding objectives although at 250 points for 10 pink horrors it’s quite an investment for a Battleline unit that doesn’t do a great amount of damage without multiple stacking buffs. If you use them, you’re likely to want to invest in some heroes specifically to make them extra durable or extra killy and really get the most out of them.

Tzaangors and Kairic Acolytes are the other two main types of battleline, both of which are more traditional infantry with fairly well rounded stats. Tzeentch has 3 conditional battleline units however: Flamers, Screamers and Burning Chariots (which is a flamer, standing on a disc, being pulled by screamers, in a trenchcoat, trying to get into an R rated movie). On top of that they can include coalition units from both Slaves to Darkness and Beasts of Chaos, and allies from Slaanesh meaning that the range of models they can field is dizzyingly broad. In that respect, like the other chaos gods, there is a great deal of room for personalization in lists compared to other, more restrictive factions.

Should I play Tzeentch?

You’ll probably enjoy Tzeentch if you enjoy a more cerebral army. You really get what you put into this one: if you’re on top of your movement and are able to look several turns ahead Tzeentch’s rules will reward you with an army that can pull off all manner of tricksy shenanigans. It’s not the type of army you play if you just want to push everything into the middle of the board and roll dice until one side breaks. But if you mess up, you can get punished hard. The versatility of what Tzeentch can accomplish sometimes works against them, because although they can do a lot of cool things they can’t do it all at once. When the stars align however, you will walk away from the game feeling like an absolute genius. Honestly if you’re on the fence about starting this army try not to overthink it. After all, whether you’re aware of it or not, Tzeentch has already made this choice for you…

The Ballad of Red Nosed Rodney – The Madcap Shaman who Stole my Heart

A few weeks ago I attended Rum and Rumble in the Realms, hosted by the Honest Wargamer crew in their TSports arena. It was a great event, but and out of 5 games there is one moment in particular which has stuck in my head. It is the story of a Madcap Shaman named Red Nosed Rodney, and the impossible challenge he took upon himself to deny me a single advantage and win the game.

The Grot who would be legend.

My opponent, the wonderful Filip Nica playing Gloomspite Gitz, needed to complete his battle tactic to win the game. He chose “Bring it Down!” meaning Morbidex Twiceborn, my extremely tanky monster, had to die this turn no matter what. If you’re familiar with Morbidex you know that taking him down from full health in a single turn (as a gitz player) is pretty difficult. He has 12 wounds, a 3+ save and Nurgle’s standard 5+ ward save. Worse, if you don’t manage to kill him by the battleshock phase he will rudely heal half of the wounds currently allocated to him! The cheek…

Filip was particularly concerned about me using all-out-defence to buff his 3+ Save even higher. He would be able to prevent this of course if he had a monster within range at the end of the charge phase to Roar at Morbidex, denying him to ability to use Command Abilities. The only problem was that his list had no monsters, and thus could not use any monstrous actions. In true Gitz fashion however, Filip concocted a plan that was so convoluted, so sneaky and so unlikely to succeed that it was practically doomed to fail.

So just kill this? Easy, right?

First of all he cast Metamorphosis on Rodney, which temporarily gave him the Monster keyword. An odd choice, I thought at the time, since the Madcap Shaman is a 4 wound hero with a 6+ Save who had already taken a wound from disease points earlier in the game and was blocked from engaging with any enemy units or contesting an objective by a dense scrum of his own Rockgut Troggoths. Regardless, I tried to unbind it and failed. I tried again, with my singular reroll for the phase, and failed again. Thus, the wheels of his evil engine were put into motion…

Next Filip cast Levitate. This would allow Rodney to leap over his own unit of Troggs and put him within striking distance of Morbidex. Now I began to see the true shape of my opponent’s dark design. Again, I attempted to unbind but failed. I should point out here that Filip hadn’t been rolling particularly well on his casts, but I had rolled worse. Despite this statistical improbability however success was still far from a certainty. Rodney would still need to roll a successful charge over the 2-model deep formation of Troggs and land in a tiny gap between Morbidex and my Plaguebearers. Following a slight change in positioning in the movement phase, the Shaman was ready, but measuring revealed he needed to roll at least an 8 with no bonuses. Disaster struck! His roll failed by only a couple of inches leaving him out of position for the final and most important step in the plan. Luckily, Filip was sitting on a seemingly endless supply of command points (seriously, he couldn’t seem to spend them fast enough) and rerolled that failed roll into a respectable 9.

Rodney’s new view of the action (recreated).

As the 25mm Shaman slipped snugly into a tiny gap next to the 100mm Morbidex’s left shin we were both grinning. This brave little grot, only 80 points, was about to accomplish the un-accomplishable and let loose a roar of such terrifying ferocity that the half-daemon Morbidex who was fully three times the size of the Shaman (even without taking into account his giant Maggoth Beast mount) would completely bottle it, leaving himself vulnerable to a killing blow!

Then my opponent failed his roar by rolling a 2.

It didn’t matter of course. It never did. My opponent’s Rockguts pounded Morbidex into a sticky paste, completed their battle tactic, claimed the objective and handily won the whole game. I did manage to kill Rodney but it was more of an afterthought by that point since he had failed to serve his (ultimately meaningless) purpose and was no longer necessary.

But weeks later I’m still thinking of that green little man. That legend of the Gitz. That wonderful fool who underwent a full body transformation into a monstrous (but still pint sized) form, flew across the battlefield on mystical currents, dared to land by the wretched heel of a 15 foot tall feral predator emitting a constant miasma of death and decay and bravely squeak out an unimpressive “grahhh…”

Probability is the backbone of wargaming. Almost nothing in a wargame is guaranteed and an unfortunate dice roll can transform the greatest of heroes into blundering jesters. Was my opponent’s play a good one? Statistically: definitely not. There were so many opportunities to fail, and he did. But this man clearly loves the game, loves his army and we both agreed – it was the right play for the Gitz. It was sneaky, cunnin’ and most importantly it was practically destined to fail. What could be more true to the spirit of the Gloomspite than that?

I salute you, or at least what remains of you, flattened smear that used to be Red Nosed Rodney – the Madcap Shaman. King of my heart. Battlefield tactician extraordinaire. Beautiful fool.

The Sons of Slimeharbour

The residents of Fairharbour were alarmed when the dark shadow appeared in the bay. Moreso when the fish began to float to the surface, their mangled forms twisted by growths and lesions. The smart villagers began to run then, but the backwater town was not known for producing geniuses. When the towering bulk of Lord Orificeus finally waded out of the bay, a cruel smile playing on his lips, it was already too late.

Who are the Sons of Slimeharbour?

Randall Gubbins was a simple farmer, who toiled daily in the fields surrounding Fairharbour growing turnips and potatoes. When Randall fell sick with a virulent wasting disease his fields fell fallow, and his crop went unharvested to rot in the ground. Surrounded within and without by decay Randall had delirious visions of his fields transformed into bountiful wilds where bulbous trees sprouted juicy, exotic fruits and filled the air with sweet, enticing scents. Brought to the brink of madness by fever Randall uttered prayers to himself for days that his visions would come true. Unfortunately for his neighbours his prayers were answered.

Randall’s vision, manifested in horrifying flesh

Lord Orificeus, one of Nurgle’s favoured grandchildren, was dispatched to Fairharbour immediately to ensure Randall’s conversion and make his dream a reality. The Great Unclean One sowed his fields with blessed seed, and fertilized it with the bodies of Randall’s neighbours. As the Feculent Gnarlmaws bloomed, Randall was carried from his sickbed by a frolicking crowd of Nurglings who bore him to the feet of Orificeus’ bulbous mass. He was christened there and then in a pool of vomit and bile and given a new name: Rancel Ganglion, Shepard of Nurgle.

Rancel, his mind now permanently changed by the virulent, magical fever that Nurgle bestowed upon him, took charge of efforts to transform the remnants of his village into a more pleasing state. Fairharbour became Slimeharbour, named for the choking, thick mucus of the giant, mutated Hagfish that spawned in the wake of Orificeus’ coming. Those of his neighbours who accepted Nurgle’s gifts became the first 15 members of Rancel’s flock. The rest were given to the nurglings.

Rancel Ganglion, Shepard of Nurgle and first on the painting table

Path to Glory

Nurgle was my first army in AoS back when I started playing in 2018. However, I still have a lot of work to do to finish them off so I’ll be using Path to Glory as an excuse to paint up the rest of my Rotbringers. I’m starting with a neat little 1k list, made up of what I already had painted and adding onto that as we go.

NameWarscrollPoints
Lord Orificeus Great Unclean One350
Rancel Ganglion Harbinger of Decay 145
Buboetis’ Warband 5 x Putrid Blightkings165
Tubercules’ Warband5 x Putrid Blightkings165
Sputicus’ Warband5 x Putrid Blightkings165
TOTAL990

My stronghold, obviously, is Slimeharbour: the ruined fishing village turned nightmare pus factory. It is located in the territory of Saltmarsh, which has been transformed by Orificeus’ arrival into Wild Lands. This allows me to include 1 more monster in my army, but that doesn’t matter right now because I only have 1 monster in my list. I can definitely see myself taking another monster later on though, and its thematically appropriate. I considered making Saltmarsh a Small Settlement, which would have allowed me to reinforce a unit 1 more time. However the changes to coherency in AoS3 make me hesitant to do that with Putrid Blightkings, and in low point games I think I will benefit from the flexibility of 3 small units rather than 1 giant ball of death. As for my first quest, The Sons of Slimeharbour are on the hunt for a sacred relic of Nurgle. Lord Orificeus has given many gifts in his short time in Slimeharbour – now it’s time that Rancel repaid his debt by finding him a worthy tribute. The infamous Witherstave should do…

Have you heard the good word?

What’s next?

The first thing I’ll be painting up for this army (after Rancel) is another 5 Putrid Blightkings, bringing me to a nice even 20 in Rancel’s growing flock of converts. Afterwards I think it will be time to add another type of unit to the roster, perhaps a Lord of Afflictions to buff the Blightking’s attacks or a pair of Pusgoyle Blightlords to zip about the battlefield capturing objectives. Otherwise, the transformation of Slimeharbour bay into a green, thick ooze will certainly have attracted the attention of the Admiral of the Slime Fleet: Gutrot Spume.

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