Peter: We’re always looking for fresh bl… I mean writers to join our team and expand our range of content. Patrick is trying his hand at a top three lists before he moves on to writing about the content he loves….. Horus Heresy.
This is the Top Three AoS lists for Quest of Champions Heat 4 that took place in the Sanctuary Gaming Centre and Coffee Shop in Sutton-in-Ashfield, UK on August 6th and 7th. Quest of Champions is run by Warrior Lodge in Nottingham, UK. There was a total of 38 players competing in this five-round heat, the top twelve of which will be invited back for a grand final later this year.
Want to watch some top AoS games for free? Ben Bailey’s new YouTube channel, Dice and Ducks were at the event giving live coverage. Round 4 and 5 are available to watch for free here.
The Warrior Lodge always have events coming up so why not check out their Twitter page and book your self on to their next event?
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The Top Three AoS Lists
Army Faction: Nighthaunt – Army Subfaction: Scarlet Doom – Grand Strategy: Fright or Flight – Triumphs:
LEADER Nagash, Supreme Lord of the Undead (955) Spirit Torment (115) – General – Command Trait: Master of Magic – Artefact: Arcane Tome
BATTLELINE 20 x Bladegheist Revenants (350) 10 x Bladegheist Revenants (175) 10 x Bladegheist Revenants (175)
OTHER 2 x Chainghasts (95)
ENDLESS SPELLS Chronomatic Cogs (40) Purple Sun of Shyish (70)
CORE BATTALIONS Battle Regiment
TOTAL POINTS: (1975/2000)
Patrick: One of the best parts of Age of Sigmar is seeing huge, god-tier centerpiece models not only regularly used on tables, but seeing those units perform to their points cost. Between the upgrades the Nighthaunt saw in their recent book, including their excellent spell lore, I imagine that we will begin to see Nagash show up in more Death lists as time goes on. Andrew’s list shows Nagash supporting (or being supported by) a big killy block of ghosts.
Nagash can produce an almost offensive number of spells in the Hero phase, and the re-roll from the Cogs makes those casts unlikely to be turned off by an early phase miscast. On top of that, Nagash is pulling double-duty by keeping the units of Bladegheists alive and closer to full strength throughout the fight.
Speaking of Bladegheists: there are 40 of them present in this list, including one reinforced unit. The buffs they can receive from the Chainghasts and Spirit Torment can turn them into a force to be reckoned with, and Andrew used them to great effect in this tournament. The units can be used both as mobile screens, protecting Nagash from incoming enemies, or as a melee threat while supported by the Spirit Torment and Chainghasts. The Scarlet Doom spirit host allows for the large unit of Bladegheists to reliably put out mortal wounds, leaning into one of the more common winning strategies in the current meta.
The Purple Sun makes an appearance in this list, as it does in most lists featuring wizards, and the forward push from the Arcane Tome wielding Spirit Torment allows for the Sun to be placed in a favorable position early in the game, rather than casting it and presenting opportunities for the opponent to dispel it as it works its way up the table 8” at a time.
This is also the only list featured today that uses a grand strategy other than No Place for the Weak. Fright or Flight seems to be leaning more towards a conservative defensive approach, relying on preventing enemies from contesting objectives rather than outright killing the opponent. Overall, a straightforward list, but one that saw Andrew win four of his games with a draw in the fourth round.
Army Faction: Slaves to Darkness – Army Subfaction: Knights of the Empty Throne – Grand Strategy: No Place for the Weak – Triumphs: Inspired
LEADER Knights of the Empty Throne Varanguard x 6 (560) – General – Daemonforged Blade and Warpsteel Shield – Command Trait: Inescapable Doom – Artefact: Grasping Plate – Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch Knights of the Empty Throne Varanguard x 6 (560) – Daemonforged Blade and Warpsteel Shield – Artefact: Corrupted Nullstone – Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch Chaos Sorcerer Lord (135) – Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch – Spell: Mask of Darkness Chaos Sorcerer Lord (135) – Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch – Spell: Mask of Darkness BATTLELINE 8 x Iron Golems (75) – Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch 8 x Iron Golems (75) – Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch 8 x Iron Golems (75) – Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch 8 x Iron Golems (75) – Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch
OTHER Mindstealer Sphiranx (95)
BEHEMOTH Chaos Warshrine (215) – Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch – Prayer: Heal
Patrick: What’s the best way to keep the Purple Sun from wiping your 500+ point leader on an unlucky roll? Have your 500+ point leader be a six-man squad of Varanguard! Or two of those units in Toby’s case. Toby is taking advantage of one of the stranger aspects of Knights of the Empty Throne, in that your leaders don’t need to be a single model, bringing a total of 12 Varanguard spread across two reinforced units. Both units carry Warpsteel Shields, providing them some resistance to spells and endless spells, and both have been improved through artefacts and command traits, allowing the two units to buff the defenses of nearby units, keep enemies locked in combat, and automatically dispel one spell. The leaders are rounded out through a pair of Sorcerer Lords, which can use Mask of Darkness to sling any given unit in the army to the other side of the board, allowing a unit of Iron Golems to catch a distant objective or place a 6-man unit of heroic Varanguard behind enemy lines.
The army wide Tzeentch mark and Chaos Warshrine give a clear image of how badly Toby doesn’t want his opponents to successfully cast, and when they do manage to get a spell off, he wants to make sure that it doesn’t hit as hard as his opponents expects. A Mindstealer is there to supplement the martial abilities of the already-proficient Varanguard, helping ensure that they can get the most out of the combat phase by delaying an opponent’s turn to fight.
The use of a Battle Regiment that doesn’t include all units in the army makes for an interesting addition, potentially preventing Toby’s priority but allowing him to deploy more reactively to his opponents. Those units may have been better placed in a battalion providing more utility benefits, such as an Expert Conquerors or Bounty Hunters battalion. Ultimately Toby drove this army to a top spot with the Battle Regiment, so it clearly worked. We can talk at length about the magic-heaviness of the current meta, but seeing a list that turns that around to focus on magical defense rather than output shows that there are hard counters present to arcane lists. The fact that Toby took this list to a 4/1 victory and 2nd place overall, with only a single loss to a Thunder Lizard list, shows that sometimes martial might makes right.
Army Type: Seraphon – Army Subfaction: Thunder Lizard – Grand Strategy: No Place for the Weak – Triumphs: Inspired
LEADER Lord Kroak (430) – Spell: Stellar Tempest Engine of the Gods (265) – General – Command Trait: Prime Warbeast – Artefact: Arcane Tome – Mount Trait: Beastmaster – Spell: Hand of Glory – Universal Prayer Scripture: Heal Saurus Astrolith Bearer (140) – Artefact: Fusil of Conflagration Skink Priest (90) – Universal Prayer Scripture: Heal
BATTLELINE 5 x Saurus Guard (115) 5 x Saurus Knights (110) 5 x Saurus Knights (110)
OTHER 5 x Chameleon Skinks (115)
BEHEMOTH Bastiladon with Solar Engine (250) Bastiladon with Solar Engine (250)
ENDLESS SPELL Chronomantic Cogs (40) Purple Sun of Shyish (70)
Patrick: Ah, Kroaknado, how we miss thee. In such a magic and mortal wound heavy meta, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that Lord Kroak remains such a strong presence in high-ranking Seraphon lists, going 4/1 with a second-round loss to Hallowed Knights. Tom takes advantage of Kroak’s 4 casting attempts, a stock +2 to casting, unbind, and dispelling rolls, and the ability to unbind spells cast anywhere on the map, Kroak is an arcane powerhouse. While this list does not take advantage of the ability to measure line-of-sight from skink wizards or Oracles, it does include some Saurus Guard to help beef up Kroak’s already impressive defenses. It’s a shame that the Balewind Vortex is no longer available, otherwise we could see Tom run the true insanity of 2nd edition Kroak.
A pair of Bastiladons are near constants in Thunder Lizard lists. Their tremendous defense and high-quality shooting always impress and taking two allows Tom to take advantage of Thunder Lizards command ability throughout the fight, leading the pair to push out an average of 18 wounds at their top bracket with more against Chaos armies or with the use of All-out Attack, enough to potentially wipe some reinforced squads of Galletian Veterans off a nearby objective.
The list includes a trio of utility heroes largely meant to improve the defenses and recover from heavy losses throughout the battle. A pair of non-reinforced Saurus Warriors act as excellent mobile screens to block the progress of enemy melee units. There is also a small cadre of Chameleon Skinks, which are an excellent harassing unit, and surprisingly durable when taking advantage of their “Perfect Mimicry” ability. While unreliable, the mortal wounds that can be caused by their dart pipes will always be appreciated when the dice are in Tom’s favor.
Two of the top three placing armies at this event included the Chronomantic Cogs and Purple Sun. These endless spells are highly effective at their current points cost, and the added boost the Cogs provide to any magic-heavy army cannot be understated. The Purple Sun remains ever-present in the meta and will probably be here to stay until the next General’s Handbook gets released.
Army Type: Flesh-eater Courts – Army Subfaction: Hollowmourne – Grand Strategy: No Place for the Weak
LEADER Abhorrent Ghoul King on Royal Terrorgheist (445) – Artefacts: Corpsefane Gauntlet – Mount Traits: Gruesome Bite – Spells: Deranged Transformation Abhorrent Archregent (245) – Spell: Spectral Host Crypt Infernal Courtier (130) – General – Command Trait: Grave Robber Varghulf Courtier (160)
BATTLELINE 10 x Crypt Ghouls (85) 9 x Crypt Horrors (330) 9 x Crypt Flayers (540)
ENDLESS SPELL Chronomantic Cogs (40)
CORE BATTALIONS Battle Regiment
ADDITIONAL ENHANCEMENTS Artefact
TOTAL POINTS: (1975/2000)
Patrick: Hero-hammer is a thing of beauty and dropping half of your army’s cost on fitting four different rotting corpses into the leader slot of your roster is an excellent place to start. Thomas took an uncommon FEC list to the top ten, going 4/1 with a loss in the second round to a Scarlet Doom Nighthaunt list (I suppose Nagash is allowed to have a favorite child for the moment).
Thomas is using Hollowmourne to its full effect by taking two double-reinforced units of Crypt Horrors, with the right support from the Archregent the damage potential of these units can quickly build from fearsome to terrifying. The ability for the Terrorgheist to keep up with the extra speed provided to one unit by Deranged Transformation makes sure to keep the unit in the aura of hit roll re-rolls. The summons from both Abhorrent units can also help supplement the army’s relatively low model count by bringing large blocks of Crypt Ghouls to the field (up to 40 between the two).
The Crypt Infernal Courtier’s high Movement characteristic and artefact make it an excellent hero hunter. The Varghulf pulls its weight both by being a support hero for the Ghouls and Horrors, but also by being a melee threat by itself.