Category Archives: Genre

Orruk Warclans Battletome Review Part 2: Ironjawz

Peter: Kieron has had parts 1 through 4 written for a good while now and it’s only my own schedule that’s prevented me from posting these for him. For those who enjoyed Part 1: Kruleboyz and have been waiting for the others, I can only apologise. Part 3: Bonesplitterz will be posted this time next week. With the final part: Big Waaagh! Coming a week later. If you want to read them earlier they’ll be available on our Patreon site

Allegiance Abilities

Woehammer Winner:
How can Ironjawz reliably get three turn 1 charges off, even when their opponent is hiding back in their territory? The defining battle trait Mighty Destroyers is the answer. This amazing ability allows a unit that receives this command to make a normal move if they are outside of 12” of an enemy; attempt a charge if they are within 12” of an enemy unit; or pile in 3” if already in engagement range. Combine that with a Megaboss on Mawkrusha, who can issue the command to three different units and you could have two units of Gore Gruntas moving 18” and then charging. That is to say nothing of the Mawkrusha itself who can also receive the command, moving 12” due to Mighty Destroyers, 12” if they have the Fast ‘Un mount trait followed by a move of 12” and then a charge of up to 12”! Just a casual 48” threat range then on this monster! If your opponent doesn’t screen well, the heart of their army can be ripped out before they can respond, especially when considering…

Honourable Mention:
Smashing and Bashing. This ability means that if the first unit activated in the combat phase kills and enemy unit, instead of your opponent being able to hit back, you choose a second unit to activate. If that unit wipes out an enemy, the Ironjawz fight again and so on until either there are no units in combat or an enemy is not destroyed. Combined with Mighty Destroyers, it is not unusual for an army facing the Ironjawz to be at least three units down while doing no damage in return AND to be pinned in their own territory.

Warclans

Woehammer Winner:
This is incredibly close and depends what sort of army composition you are planning. If you want to lean into speed and mobility while avoiding fielding any Galletian Veterans then you are probably wanting to take Gore Gruntas as battleline and Bloodtoofs lets you do that. In addition, if a Gore Gruntas unit is still in engagement range at the end of the combat phase then they can pile in an additional 3”. Even better is that Gore Gruntas that fought but are not within engagement range can either make a normal move or attempt a charge, further increasing the range of these now turbo-charged pigs who may have moved 9” in the hero phase, 9” in the movement phase, 12” in the charge phase, piled in 3” and then charged an additional 12” for a mindboggling 45” or five times the movement characteristic on their Warscroll.

Honourable Mention:
If you are looking to include mostly Ardboyz and Brutes in your army, then Ironsunz is probably the one you want to go for. Their clan trait is that you can charge at the end of your opponent’s charge phase as long as you are not already engaged in combat. Nurgle players know and love this ability (called Blightkrieg on The Glottkin’s Warscroll) but Ironjawz had it first and it’s free for all units to use, including your Mawkrusha. With Ardboyz and Brutes moving a frankly sedentary 4” each, anything that can give them extra movement is helpful, so having twice the number of charge phases helps get your Orruks across the board and where they want to be: in combat.

Command Traits

Woehammer Winner:
Whereas Kruleboyz players probably want to take at least two if not all three of their versions, the Ironjawz ones are somewhat lacklustre in comparison. The winner is definitely Mighty Waaagh! Leader, which allows you to re-reroll charges for Ironjawz that are wholly within 12”, which is quite big area once you factor in the Mawkrusha’s huge base. With the Waaagh adding 1 to charges and adding a much needed pip of rend to weapons, the last thing you want it for charges to fall short and for this once per battle ability to have gone to waste.

Honourable Mention:
There is a possible combo with the Arcane Tome as an artefact and either Touched by the Weird and Master of Magic to help a spell (Hand of Gork – see below) be cast, but I’m going to stick within the book for this one and go with Hulking Brute. Hulking Brute adds D3 mortal wounds once the general has completed a charge on a 2+ to one enemy unit. While not incredibly inspiring on its own, if the general on Mawkrusha also takes Mean ‘Un as a mount trait, then Stomp goes to D6 instead of D3 and there are no more pesky Hunters of the Heartlands left to stop you! Add in the Warscroll ability Destructive Bulk and not only are another 3 mortal wounds (at top bracket) added to the damage, but if a unit is then destroyed, the Mawkrusha can immediately pile in D6” and Stomp again for another D6+3 mortal wounds. Add in the impact hits from Gore Gruntas who are probably fighting alongside the Mawkrusha, ten wound screens are at serious risk of just making charges shorter and not actually achieving any screening at all.

Artefacts

Woehammer Winner:
As mentioned above, there is a combo with Arcane Tome available, but I’m going to stick to the Ironjawz Artefacts of Power here with Armour of Gork being the winner of the three. Armour of Gork gives a 6+ ward and adds 1 to hit rolls, but with a penalty of 2” from the model’s movement characteristic. On a Megaboss on foot this results in a hilariously bad 2” move, but on the Mawkrusha, that’s still a 10” move that can get up to 20” once per battle with Fast ‘Un. A 6+ ward also makes the Megaboss effectively 21 wounds rather than 18 and offers some measure of protection against mortal wound spells and shooting.

Honourable Mention:
A close second and probably the one you’d give to a Megaboss on foot (though see why this might be different for Big Waaagh in Part 4) is Destroyer for a once per battle +3 damage to the bearer’s melee weapons. Combine with the Warchanter’s +1 damage buff for between seven and eight 6 damage attacks depending on which flavour of Megaboss is carrying this artefact.

Mount Traits

Woehammer Winner:
To give the option of a first turn angry Orruk cabbage charge, there can only be one: Fast ‘Un. The base that the Mawkrusha sits on is huge and while this can be a good thing, it can also make manoeuvring difficult, meaning that an extra move can be really helpful to get in exactly the right place for that charge, be it on the first turn or not. It’s also a great combo with Armour of Gork to offset the movement penalty that comes with this artefact.

Honourable Mention:
As referenced above, taking Mean ‘Un can maximise the damage done on the charge and through stomps by your Mawkrusha, making it your second choice. Double Mawkrusha lists have taken down many events in the past (and have done so even in 2022-23 Season 1) so Mean ‘Un could be a choice for a second mount trait if you go down the Warlord/Command Entourage Battalion route. Then you need to ask whether the D6 damage vs. D3 damage on the Stomp every turn is worth more than Destroyer as a second artefact? Probably not, but it’s quite a fun option.

Spell Lore

Woehammer Winner:
If you are not using herds of Gore Gruntas and Mawkrushas to get across the board, then the mobility of your foot troops is one of the biggest challenges as an Ironjawz general. Step up Da Great Big Hand of Gork to solve all those problems. For a mere casting value of 7, a unit that is not in combat and is wholly within 12” can be redeployed any where on the battlefield 9” from the enemy, but cannot move in the following movement phase. At this point, if Gork is throwing Brutes across the board, you can then Mighty Destroyers the Brutes to get them to attempt a 9” charge, with another two attempts possible in the charge phase if you don’t make it first time. However, if you want to channel that other Orruk god, Mork and be cunningly brutal, you can use Da Great Big Hand of Gork on a unit of Gore Gruntas and then place them outside of 12” (that is, 12.1” away). When Mighty Destroyers in then used, they can make their normal move of 9”, ending up with a 3” charge away from the enemy, getting around the restriction on moving after using Hand of Gork as it’s out of phase and preventing enemy redeploys for the same reason. (You could use the same trick with Brutes too, especially if you plan on calling the Waaagh that turn to get +1 to charge rolls in the charge phase, making it effectively a 7” charge.)

Honourable Mention:
While Foot of Gork is hilarious, potentially causing enough wounds to one-shot a fully tricked out Gargant, second place goes to Bash ‘Em Ladz! It is quite tricky to get off, with a casting value of 8, but Touched by the Waaagh! can help with that and it gives a buff of +1 to wound for ALL Ironjawz units wholly within 16” of the caster. Bonuses to hit are fairly commonplace, but there’s a reason that Inspired is the best Triumph you can pick – often there’s no other way to get this buff. Now imagine this on a Mawkrusha and two units of 6 Gore Gruntas…Destruction Grand Alliance indeed!

Grand Strategies

Woehammer Winner:
More so than with Kruleboyz, Waaagh is a fantastic Grand Strategy for Ironjawz by virtue of the fact that your general is probably flying around the place and looking to stomp enemies in their own territory anyway and, if you chose the Bloodtoofs Warclan, then a single Gore Grunta can score this for you.

Honourable Mention:
For the second choice, if you are going GHB only, the Ironjawz best pick is the opposite to Kruleboyz with Take What’s Theirs as your whole battleplan involves getting right in your opponent’s face and killing their army in their own territory and this Grand Strategy plays right into these strengths.

Battle Tactics

Woehammer Winner:
Continuing the theme of Battle Tactics with interesting spellings (or should that be spellinz?), Ironjawz have access to Squish Da Puny Gitz. There needs to be at least one Battleline unit left on the battlefield and there needs to be none left at the end of the turn. With the amount of output possible from Ironjawz, particularly Bounty Hunter Gore Gruntas doing up to 3 damage per attack against Galletian Veterans, this should a fairly straightforward one to get.

Honourable Mention:
With such an absolute beat-stick as a Megaboss on Mawkrusha as your general, This One’s Mine is a total no-brainer. Find it. Kill it. Score points. ‘Nuff said.

Warscrolls

Woehammer Winner:
This unit has been mentioned repeatedly throughout this review, so it has to be the Megaboss on Mawkrusha. Not only does he allow three uses of Mighty Destroyer a turn and have a huge base for sharing this command and other buffs (e.g. re-reroll charges), but he can be absolutely devastating in combat too. With the Warchanter buff and if the Destroyer relic is taken, he should do between 5-10 mortal wounds before even fighting and then, with All out Attack and Finest Hour (aka Best Day Ever) and the Ironjawz Waaagh, seven attacks that hit and wounds on 2+ at Rend -2 for 6 damage each followed by eight attacks from his mount that hit and wound on 2+ at Rend -3 with the Waaagh for 3 damage each. Add all those up and it’s a potential of 70+ wounds in a single combat from a unit that may have started over 50” away from you. You can close your jaw now.

Honourable Mention:
A very important unit to Ironjawz is the Warchanter, but based on a lot of the combos discussed so far, I’m going to go for Gore Gruntas. They’re significantly faster than other troop options available and movement is absolutely key to this edition of AoS. They also hit pretty hard – not quite Fulminator hard – but plenty hard enough to clean up Battleline in short order and push more elite units too, particularly with the chip mortal wound damage they can do to help make any attack back pretty inconsequential.

Final Thoughts

Ironjawz are a really fun army and a pretty good first army to pick up as they’re relatively forgiving with their tough armour and relatively straightforward gameplay, resulting in quite a high skill floor for new players. There is still plenty of nuance in this army though, with Mork-like sneaky plays with Mighty Destroyers and the Hand of Gork and just because you can charge everything turn 1, it doesn’t mean that you should. Jiwan Noah Singh is a great American Ironjawz player who can be found on streams playing a more considered approach. The thinking being that if you can hold the Mawkrusha back a couple of turns then by the time it is committed, there’s nothing left that can meaningfully threaten it, allowing it to rampage around the board, destroying all it touches.
Next up will be Part 3 of 4 of the Orruks book, the weird cousins of both Kruleboyz and Ironjawz that live on a commune to be in touch with nature, usually touching them with a massive stone spear: Bonesplitters.

Top Three AoS Lists for the London GT

This is the Top Three AoS Lists for the London GT that took place in the UK on 1st and 2nd October. It involved 76 players vying to be crowned champion in a 5 game tournament.

Before I jump into the Top Three AoS Lists, I wanted to remind everyone of our friendly Discord server where you can join in the conversation with the Woehammer crew and suggest articles or series for the website.

If you like what we’re doing, why not join our Patreon and help keep it going?

Also if there’s a one day or two day tournament you’d like us to cover drop us a comment on this post and we’ll have a look at it for you.

The Top Three AoS Lists

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

Leaders
The Shadow Queen (340)
Morathi-Khaine (340)
Hag Queen on Cauldron of Blood (270)
General
– Command Trait: Zealous Orator
– Artefact: Arcane Tome (Universal Artefact)
– Lore of Shadows: Mindrazor
– Prayer: Sacrament of Blood

Battleline
15 x Blood Sisters (420)*
Reinforced x 2
10 x Witch Aelves (115)*
Pairs of Sacrificial Knives
10 x Witch Aelves (115)*
Pairs of Sacrificial Knives

Behemoths
Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur (400)
– Allies

Core Battalions
*Bounty Hunters

Total: 2000 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 2 / 4
Allies: 400 / 400
Wounds: 81
Drops: 7

Danny: Darren Watson is a beast, unbeaten in 15 games and 3 GTs. He brought his DoK out for the HUGE London GT, opting for a relatively close to the chest but clearly brutally effective list centered around a double reinforced blob of stab sneks and the Spinedog.

The piece you don’t usually see at tournies these days is the Hag Queen on Cauldron. It’s a great piece full of utility – the Avatar riding shotgun is plenty killy and the Queen offers a prayer and separate ability to bump something up the Blood Rites table – meaning two units can go up 1, or you can double down on one unit…such as giving the 15 sneks +1 to hit and wound from BR 2. Better yet, it projects a +1 save aura and acts as the tankiest platform available to DoK for the Zealous Orator (4+ rally) trait. Arcane Tome obvs completes the combo, allowing something in the army to benefit from the Krondspine’s +1 – which makes getting Mindrazor – a completely devastating spell to get off (or not, as it’s CV 8) on stabbers – so getting it down to a 7 is potentially game changing.

It will be interesting to see if this list survives the rumoured incoming Spinedog nerfs. Either way, it’s a powerful archetype, clearly able to take down the sheer volume of bodies BoC can field (twice!) and the movement and MW output of Fangs of Sotek. A huge tournament to win for Darren and the snek-ladies.

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Allegiance: Maggotkin of Nurgle
Subfaction: Drowned Men
– Grand Strategy: Blessed Desecration
– Triumphs: Inspired

Leaders
Be’Lakor, the Dark Master (360)*
Allies
Lord of Afflictions (210)*
General
– Command Trait: Overpowering Stench
– Artefact: The Splithorn Helm
– Dolorous Tocsin
– Incubatch

Battleline
4 x Pusgoyle Blightlords (440)*
2x Dolorous Tocsin
– Reinforced x 1
4 x Pusgoyle Blightlords (440)*
2x Dolorous Tocsin
– Reinforced x 1
2 x Pusgoyle Blightlords (220)*
1x Dolorous Tocsin
2 x Pusgoyle Blightlords (220)*
1x Dolorous Tocsin

Units
3 x Nurglings (105)*

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment

Total: 1995 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 2 / 4
Allies: 360 / 400
Wounds: 130
Drops: 1

Danny: Flies, and Be’lakor to probably shut down your one key piece with any hope of dealing with them. One of my club-mates faced Hadrien in the first round as KO, with predictable results – however he did say that Hadrien was frustratingly lovely and skilled as an opponent.

Flies were called out in the recent Metawatch article with good reason, and will clearly see nerfs soon – it will be interesting to see if they go as far as touching the Drowned Men pre-game move too. Either way, this exact list is probably not long for this world, with good reason – it’s completely oppressive and very, very few lists have any kind of answer to it.

Still, credit to Hadrien for 2nd at such a big event and for being a great competitor and a gentleman while he crushed dreams.

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Allegiance: Kharadron Overlords
Sky Port: Barak Zilfin
– Grand Strategy: Take What’s Theirs
– Triumphs: Inspired

Leaders
Aether-Khemist (90)**
General
– Command Trait: Collector
– Artefact: Spell in a Bottle
Arkanaut Admiral (125)*
Arkanaut Admiral (125)**
Artefact: Staff of Ocular Optimisation
Aetheric Navigator (85)**
Artefact: Svaregg-Stein Illuminator Flarepistol

Battleline
10 x Arkanaut Company (90)*
1x Skypikes
– 1x Light Skyhooks
– 1x Aethermatic Volley Guns
10 x Arkanaut Company (90)*
1x Skypikes
– 1x Light Skyhooks
– 1x Aethermatic Volley Guns
10 x Arkanaut Company (90)*
– 1x Skypikes
– 1x Light Skyhooks
– 1x Aethermatic Volley Guns

Units
10 x Grundstok Thunderers (270)*
2x Aetheric Fumigators
– 2x Decksweepers
– 2x Aethercannons
– 1x Grundstok Mortars
– Reinforced x 1

Behemoths
Arkanaut Ironclad (490)*
Main Gun: Great Volley Cannon
– Great Endrinworks: The Last Word
Arkanaut Ironclad (490)
Main Gun: Great Volley Cannon
– Great Endrinworks: Zonbarcorp ‘Dealbreaker’ Battle Ram

Endless Spells & Invocations
Rune of Petrification (40)

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment
**Command Entourage – Magnificent

Additional Enhancements
Artefact

Total: 1985 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 1 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 108
Drops: 5

Danny: KO have gone from zeroes to heroes after a steady trickle of FAQs and generic enhancement tweaks have meant they can play the ‘3rd edition’ game properly now.

With an extreme paucity of unit types to choose from, there’s only so much flex and variations on the theme of ‘FLYING GUNS’ KO can manage, but this one doubles down on the Ironclad – the biggest, most flying of guns possible. One is endowed with The Last Word, allowing for double unleash hell – which is generally a good way to avoid there being a combat phase at all – while the other has installed the Dealbreaker Ram, allowing for a roll of dice equal to the charge roll, with 4+ doing a mortal. An amusing contrast of tactical roles – one you don’t want to get busy with, the other wants to charge in to finish off a weakened unit with a clutch of mortals.

Beyond that, there’s one very interesting piece of tech in the list. Usually, the Spell in a Bottle (a free cast of an endless spell that can’t be unbound) is stuffed full of Purple Sun for the extra rend (which, given KO are a majority rend 1 army, they love) or the warp lightning vortex – yep, ‘Any endless spell can be chosen (all restrictions are ignored)’. But Stephen has opted for the LRL endless spell ‘Rune of Petrification’ which has a 6″ aura of mortals on a 4+ and -1/-1 from run and charge rolls – presumably a handy way to slow down threats and cause key charges to fail, so the double-Ironclads can go to work from a safe range.

With some big wins against tough opponents, Stephen rightly takes 3rd, further cementing KO as back in the gunning (I mean, running) for a spot in the A tier of armies.

Allegiance: Soulblight Gravelords
Lineage: Legion of Night
– Mortal Realm: Shyish
– Grand Strategy: Vampiric Conquerors
– Triumphs: Bloodthirsty

Leaders
Mannfred von Carstein, Mortarch of Night (380)*
Lore of the Deathmages: Decrepify
Necromancer (125)*
General
– Command Trait: Unbending Will
– Artefact: Arcane Tome (Universal Artefact)
– Lore of the Deathmages: Fading Vigour
Vampire Lord (140)*
Lore of the Vampires: Amethystine Pinions

Battleline
30 x Deathrattle Skeletons (240)**
Reinforced x 2
10 x Dire Wolves (135)**
10 x Dire Wolves (135)**

Units
5 x Blood Knights (195)*
1 x Corpse Cart with Balefire Brazier (80)*
20 x Grave Guard (280)*
Great Wight Blades
– Reinforced x 1
20 x Grave Guard (280)*
Great Wight Blades
– Reinforced x 1

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment
**Expert Conquerors

Total: 1990 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 4 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 153
Drops: 4

Danny: We’ve talked before about how Soullblight are enjoying a resurgence – and while they’re not quite cracked the podium recently, in London or otherwise, they’re creeping closer. James here was in winning position – losing only to the eventual winner, which set him down the table a fair way.

He’s opted for a nice balanced list of tech – the ever-popular Mannfred for utility and teleporting/move blocking shenanigans, with some cheap supporting heroes behind a big blob of skellies and two units of our favourite, undead fluffy friends, the Dire Wolves.

Skellies are often run MSU as cheap chaff who can pop back out of a gravesite – but the blob of 30, combined with their ability to bring back models that have died in the same phase on a 4+, before they attack – can make them truly resilient objective grabbers. Think you’ve killed 25? Well, on average 12 of them are coming back and now the unit counts for 51 on the objective again! No doubt this unit was supported with the corpse cart, projecting a -1 to wound aura, making them a bony nightmare to chew through.

Elsewhere of note is the DOUBLE Graveguard brick – 2 units of 20 – that would be putting out silly damage when supported by one or both the foot heroes.

Two big hammers, one giant anvil, some furry fast objective grabbers and screens – it’s a quality list and 10th feels like a harsh result when it came so close to winning the whole thing – big congrats to James!

Final Tournament Placings

Top Three AoS Lists for Warhammer World: Matched Play Event

This is the Top Three AoS Lists for the Warhammer World: Matched Play Event that took place in Nottingham, UK on 24th and 25th September. It involved 72 players vying to be crowned champion in a 5 game tournament.

Before I jump into the Top Three AoS Lists, I wanted to remind everyone of our friendly Discord server where you can join in the conversation with the Woehammer crew and suggest articles or series for the website.

If you like what we’re doing, why not join our Patreon and help keep it going?

Also if there’s a one day or two day tournament you’d like us to cover drop us a comment on this post and we’ll have a look at it for you.

The Top Three AoS Lists

Allegiance: Maggotkin of Nurgle
Subfaction: Drowned Men
– Mortal Realm: Ghur
– Grand Strategy: Show of Dominance
– Triumphs: Inspired

LEADERS
Lord of Afflictions (210)*
General
– Command Trait: Overpowering Stench
– Artefact: The Splithorn Helm
Orghotts Daemonspew (300)*
Bloab Rotspawned (300)
Lore of Malignance: Gift of Disease

UNITS
10 x Putrid Blightkings (500)**
5 x Putrid Blightkings (250)**
2 x Pusgoyle Blightlords (220)*
1 x Dolorous Tocsin
2 x Pusgoyle Blightlords (220)*
1 x Dolorous Tocsin

CORE BATTALIONS
*Battle Regiment
**Expert Conquerors

TOTAL: 2000/2000
WOUNDS: 127
ALLIES: 0/400
REINFORCED UNITS: 1/4
DROPS: 4

Declan: Maggotkin of Nurgle are appearing at the top of many a tournament at the moment with Blightkings and Pusslords distributed as wished. Marco’s list has two of the special characters – Daemonspew and Rotspawned. This gives him a little punch and a little range, but must also help in the mirror match; as Marco beat Nurgle at the beginning and the end of the tournament.

Finishing 1st with 5-0 is always a good result and particularly special at Warhammer World!!

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Allegiance: Beasts of Chaos
Greatfray: Gavespawn
– Grand Strategy: Take What’s Theirs
– Triumphs: Indomitable

Leaders
Beastlord (95)*
Artefact: Mutating Gnarlblade
Dragon Ogor Shaggoth (155)*
Lore of Dark Storms: Hailstorm
Dragon Ogor Shaggoth (155)**
General
– Command Trait: Unravelling Aura
– Lore of Dark Storms: Sundering Blades
Great Bray-Shaman (100)**
Lore of the Twisted Wilds: Savage Dominion

Battleline
6 x Dragon Ogors (250)***
3x Paired Ancient Weapons
– 3x Draconic War glaives
– Reinforced x 1
6 x Dragon Ogors (250)***
3x Paired Ancient Weapons
– 3x Draconic War glaives
– Reinforced x 1
10 x Ungors (65)****
Mauls & Half-Shields
10 x Ungors (65)****
Mauls & Half-Shields
10 x Ungors (65)****
Mauls & Half-Shields

Units
20 x Bestigors (250)***
Reinforced x 1
5 x Centigors (85)*
5 x Centigors (85)**
1 x Mindstealer Sphiranx (95)*

Behemoths
Jabberslythe (150)*
Cygor (125)**

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment
**Battle Regiment
***Bounty Hunters
****Expert Conquerors

Total: 1990 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 3 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 194
Drops: 8

Declan: Well Beasts have well and truly made it, with some of the top players in the UK taking them and doing well with them… and Freddie is doing very well with them as well. He got his last win on the top table but was just pipped to the post by Marco.

Freddie’s version of the Beasts of Chaos army has a bit of everything… and lots of Dragon Ogres. Whilst they don’t hit too hard with the Paired Ancient Weapons (no rend), they have volumes of attacks over a relatively small area. The mix with the War Glaives (2″ reach) likely allows Freddie to get a few more of them into combat as they are on large bases. Being in Bounty Hunters doubles the damage against Galatian Veterans as well so be careful what you send against them.

From Games Workshop & Wahapedia

If you’ve not seen the Beasts of Chaos in your local area their other trick is summoning – with the Dragon Ogre Shaggoth taking damage from the herdstone and then healing most of it back – the summoning racks up quickly and just when you’ve started to make progress more appear. This makes the Beasts of Chaos army difficult to shift and with 194 wounds and summoning it’s a true DPS (Damage per Second) check. You need to do the damage!

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Army Faction: Stormcast Eternals
Army Type: Scions of the Storm
– Subfaction: Hammers of Sigmar
– Grand Strategy: Take What’s Theirs
– Triumph: Inspired

LEADERS
Knight-Draconis (300)*
General
– Command Traits: Heroic Stature
– Artefacts of Power: Mirrorshield
– Mount Traits: Celestial Instincts
Knight-Judicator with Gryph-hounds (205)*

BATTLELINE
Dracothian Guard Tempestors (220)*
Liberators (115)*
Liberator-Prime
– Grandweapon
– Heavens-wrought Weapon and Sigmarite Shield
Stormdrake Guard (340)**
Stormdrake-Prime
– Drakerider’s Lance
Stormdrake Guard (340)**
Stormdrake-Prime
– Drakerider’s Lance

OTHER
Vanguard-Raptors with Longstrike Crossbows (240)*
Vanguard-Raptors with Longstrike Crossbows (240)*

CORE BATTALIONS
*Battle Regiment
**Bounty Hunters

TOTAL POINTS: 2000/2000

Declan: They may have lost the first game, and the Stormdrake Guard scroll may have been rewritten (and again), but they are no longer giving away extra points and so they are back on top! The dragons are doing +1 damage to Galatian Veterans with incredible moving and mortal wounds at range (no +1 damage on these!), and the Liberators provide a single GV unit in case it’s needed for scenarios or Battle Tactics.

This is quick… I mean really quick! And anything that might survive gets shot off. Eagle eyed readers will notice that the teleport has gone, but the Vanguards are in smaller units to give some flexibility, so it’s not really needed.

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Army Faction: Orruk Warclans
Army Type: Kruleboyz
– Army Subfaction: Skulbugz

LEADER
1 x Gobsprakk (280)
1 x Killaboss on Corpse-rippa Vulcha (240)
Artefacts: Arcane Tome
– Mount Traits: Fast ’Un
– Spells: Flaming Weapon
1 x Swampcalla Shaman and Pot-grot (105)
General
– Command Traits: Supa Sneaky
– Spells: Choking Mist
1 x Breaka-boss on Mirebrute Troggoth (180)
1 x Kragnos (720)

BATTLELINE
10 x Gutrippaz (180)*
Gutrippa Hornblower
– Gutrippa Banner Bearer
– Gutrippa Boss
– Wicked Stikka
10 x Gutrippaz (180)*
Gutrippa Hornblower
– Gutrippa Banner Bearer
– Gutrippa Boss
– Wicked Stikka
10 x Hobgrot Slittaz (80)*

ENDLESS SPELL
1 x The Burning Head (20)

CORE BATTALIONS:
*Bounty Hunters

TOTAL POINTS: (1985/2000)

Declan: Well Kruleboyz are bottom of the pile with Gitz, making Eddie’s 4-1 a great achievement — and done without an Incarnate. Take A Bow! This is all about the characters and Kragnos charging monsters off the board… take it off!

Games Workshop & Wahapedia

Whilst Kraggy is doing his thing, Gobsprakk is scaring (or killing) enemy casters and the Mirebrute & Vulcha are charging alongside Kraggy. Of course a double turn might be the end of this army, but Eddie must have had a few against him to still get 4-1 — that doesn’t happen by accident with this list. A great wildcard.

Final Tournament Placings

Top Three AoS Lists for Epic Level Showdown

This is the Top Three AoS Lists for the Epic Level Showdown that took place in Georgia, USA on 24th and 25th September. It involved 35 players vying to be crowned champion in a 5 game tournament.

Before I jump into the Top Three AoS Lists, I wanted to remind everyone of our friendly Discord server where you can join in the conversation with the Woehammer crew and suggest articles or series for the website.

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Also if there’s a one day or two day tournament you’d like us to cover drop us a comment on this post and we’ll have a look at it for you.

The Top Three AoS Lists

Allegiance: Maggotkin of Nurgle
Subfaction: Drowned Men
– Grand Strategy: No Place for the Weak
– Triumphs: Bloodthirsty

Leaders
Be’Lakor, the Dark Master (360)*
Allies
Lord of Afflictions (210)*
General
– Command Trait: Overpowering Stench
– Artefact: Arcane Tome (Universal Artefact)
– Lore of Malignance: Rancid Visitations

Battleline
10 x Plaguebearers (150)*
2 x Pusgoyle Blightlords (220)*
1x Dolorous Tocsin
4 x Pusgoyle Blightlords (440)*
2x Dolorous Tocsin
– Reinforced x 1
4 x Pusgoyle Blightlords (440)*
2x Dolorous Tocsin
– Reinforced x 1

Units
3 x Nurglings (105)*

Endless Spells & Invocations
Ravenak’s Gnashing Jaws (60)

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment

Total: 1985 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 2 / 4
Allies: 360 / 400
Wounds: 134
Drops: 1

Brett: We’ve seen the Nurgle Blightlord’s a lot in Season 1, they deny the missions well more than play them well, but to look at this list and think it’s like that would be a mistake. To start with Be’lakor is heading the list (even if he isn’t the general) and it has Plaguebearers and Nurglings even. That’s right there are Galletian Veteran’s in this list. On top of that we have Ravenak’s Gnashing Jaws, the mechanics of this spell are brilliant (roll 3D6 and subtract the target unit’s movement, take the difference as mortal wounds). 3 casts/dispels with Arcane Tome and Rancid Visitations, an anti horde mortal wound spell. Be’lakor is a skill pick, 20% of your army and he can hit really hard but he only has 14 wounds on a 4+ and degrades quickly.

You need to pick your time to commit him and I feel like the durable Blightlords compliment him well. Commit them to the early scoring/battle tactics and bluntening your opponents thrust before swooping in. It might even open up a This One’s Mine which can help a lot with your scoring. The Blightlords are just an effective unit, 8 wounds and 11 attacks each and mortal wounds on the charge and at the end of combat. With disease points they grind units down through a combination of resilience (5+ ward and heal a wound every round) and steady damage. The Nurglings are a natural for either taking an unprotected objective or completing Desecrate the Lands with their Hidden Infestations (they don’t deploy until the end of your first movement phase and must be outside of your deployment).

They arrive 3″ away from Terrain so it will be the next turn before they can do Desecrate. It’s a unique take on a pretty common solution and able to access pretty much all battle tactics (particularly from the GHB). Great work going 5/0 and proving the there is depth to Nurgle.

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Army Faction: Idoneth Deepkin
Subfaction: Mor’phann
– Grand Strategy: The Creeping Gloomtide
– Triumph: Indomitable

LEADERS
Akhelian King (250)*
General
– Command Traits: Unstoppable Fury
– Bladed Polearm and Falchion
– Artefacts of Power: Arcane Tome
– Mount Traits: Voidchill Darkness
– Spells: Flaming Weapon
– Bonding: Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur
Isharann Soulscryer (150)*
Prayers: Curse
Isharann Soulrender (120)*

BATTLELINE
Namarti Reavers (170)*
Namarti Reavers (170)*
Namarti Reavers (170)*
Namarti Reavers (170)*
Namarti Thralls (390)*

BEHEMOTH
Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur (400)*

TERRAIN
1 x Gloomtide Shipwreck (0)

CORE BATTALIONS
*Battle Regiment

TOTAL POINTS: 1990/2000

Brett: Another different take on the popular infantry heavy Idoneth list. Instead of a 20 or 30 model units Jon is running his Reavers in 10 model trading units. The Thralls are still in a double reinforced unit. The Soulscryer is one reason for the smaller units, they are much easier to Deep Strike. One can garrison the shipwreck as well. The Soulscryer can take 2 units with him and redeploy at the end of the movement phase within 6″ of the edge of the battlefield and outside of 9″ from an enemy unit. Great for battletactics and sniping important things. The Soulrender is returning units with Lurelight. The King has all of the upgrades which include Unstoppable Fury (+2 attacks for each unit within 3″ in High Tide), Arcane Tome/Flaming Weapon (+1 damage) and Voidchill Darkness (-1 hit to enemy attackers).

Rounding out the list are Krondspine and the Shipwreck.Krondspine is interesting choice but helps before High Tide (turn 3) when Idoneth has fight first available before dropping into Ebb Tide where they can retreat and charge (or shoot). Krondspine gives you an offensive threat that needs to be dealt with. Supported by Reavers and even the King from turn 2 it’s a serious threat, even better if it’s still around in turn 3. The small units of Reavers can make effective use of the Tides of Death, there is less on the line if you run and shoot with a small unit that will most likely be taken out next turn. An interesting take on Idoneth that ran very well and scored well throughout, in the end losing to our winner in the final round. No surprises really, Jon is one of the top ranked players in the world.

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Army Faction: Slaves to Darkness
Army Type: Knights of the Empty Throne
– Grand Strategy: Take What’s Theirs

LEADERS
Varanguard (560)
General
– Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch
– Command Traits: Inescapable Doom
– Daemonforged Blade and Warpsteel Shield
– Artefacts of Power: Grasping Plate
Chaos Sorcerer Lord (135)*
Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch
– Spells: Mask of Darkness
Slaves to Darkness Daemon Prince (210)*
Mark of Chaos: Khorne
– Hellforged Sword and Malefic Talons
Chaos Sorcerer Lord on Manticore (270)*
Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch
– Spells: Mask of Darkness
– Bonding: Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur

BATTLELINE
Untamed Beasts (70)*
Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch
Untamed Beasts (70)*
Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch
Untamed Beasts (70)*
Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch

BEHEMOTH
Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur (400)
Chaos Warshrine (215)*
Mark of Chaos: Tzeentch
– Prayers: Heal

CORE BATTALIONS
*Battle Regiment

TOTAL POINTS: 2000/2000

Brett: Knights of the Empty Throne (without Archaon) being run here by one of the top 10 players in the world (tough crowd in Georgia). Although there is no Archeon it’s still a hero based list and possibly a prelude to what the end of the year may look like with the new book. Only 2 casts/dispels but with both the Krondspine (Endless Spell protection and massive melee threat) and the Warshrine (Behemoth priest). Both Sorcerers know Mask of Darkness (teleport for Mortal units). Everything except the Daemon Prince is Tzeetch marked (reroll save rolls of 1 for everything except the Incarnate and Untamed Beasts) and a 5+ ward against the effects of magic. Varanguard as general with Inescapable Doom (no retreat within 3″) and Grasping Plate (6″ engagement range and 6″ pile in). We’ll assume they are 6th Circle for the extra damage on the charge.

Playing this well takes some considered action, there are 4 solid hammers but they work best with overlapping buffs. Khorne Marked Daemon Prince has the 18″ halve charge and run rolls, he is best close to something important that you don’t want charged. The Krondspine doesn’t benefit from the armies buffs so can act independently but it’s also strong anti endless spell protection. Varanguard are a mobile threat as is the Sorcerer on Manticore but committing them too early could be a mistake. The Untamed Beasts and Sorcerers are mortals and can be teleported with Mask of Darkness. Great for those Battle Tactics. The Sorceror’s can use Eye of the Gods at the end of the turn if they kill a unit. Probably not something to play into, the Sorcerer’s can be removed relatively easily – even the 12 wounds on a 4+, but something to take advantage of

The ideal set up is probably to have the Sorcerer cast Demonic Power (reroll hits and wounds) on the Varanguard before launching them. Keep the Daemon Prince near to the Varanguard to prevent the counter charge. In earlier turns screen with the Untamed Beasts (both the Prince and Manticore fly so can go over the screen if necessary). Initially everything is likely to stay close to the Warshrine for the 6+ ward, particularly if there is much shooting in the enemy’s list. The loss to Lumineth just highlights the issues Slaves have as a melee army that is relatively slow moving with long range mortal wound shooting. Lumineth in particular aren’t likely to push into to you to score giving little room to react to their shooting, 2 turns across open ground is uncomfortable.

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Army Faction: Ogor Mawtribes
Army Type: Boulderhead
– Grand Strategy: No Place for the Weak
– Triumphs: Inspired

LEADERS
Frostlord on Stonehorn (430)*
General
– Metalcruncher
– Lord of Beasts
– Brand of the Svard
Kragnos, The End of Empires (720)*

BATTLELINE
Mournfang Pack (320)*
Reinforced: Once
Ogor Gluttons (250)*
Ogor Gluttons (250)*

CORE BATTALIONS
*Bounty Hunters

TOTAL POINTS: 1970/2000

Brett: Do you like a quick movement phase without the distraction of a lot of units (and models)? But Gargants don’t float your boat then get on Ogors, mini, hungrier Gargants looking for their next meal. They also look pretty angry rather than slow witted so that’s something (I always wanted Ogres as a playable race in Warcraft). With a new book coming there is some light at the end of the tunnel, at the moment Ogors are languishing with a 42% winrate with fairly low representation. I’m going with this must have been a Battle Regiment not Bounty Hunters because Bounty Hunters is only 3 units max. Anyone 2 Generals since Kragnos is no one’s servant (he counts as a General).

The Frostlord has Metalcruncher (D6 MW to a unit within 3″ at start of combat) and as a Boulderhead, Lord of Beasts (1″ extra movement) and Brand of Svard (+1 to hit with melee weapons). Kragnos is handing out his 18″ charge with 3D6 rolls. The Gluttons get an extra 2″ move if they are more than 3″ from all enemy units (they’re hungry) and everything does mortal wounds on the charge. Kragnos is unique there where he makes a charge with different profiles if it is against units or a single monster. His Bellowing Roar as he gets wounded is always funny, in a bad way. If you see Ogors you know they are going to concentrate on stomping you, if they are with Kragnos they will be fairly compact.

Michael recovered really well from his early round losses, eventually finishing higher than both of his opponents. As expected scoring was an issue with 6 dropped tactics and 2 dropped Grand Strategies through the weekend. Congratulations on bringing a pretty unique list.

Final Tournament Placings

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…

Disciples of Tzeentch: Battletome Review

The Changers of Ways return! And fittingly, we’ve decided to try and change our review format a little. Mainly because, to support the new release, we’ve decided to break things up and create a conversational, high-level review, a more detailed guide to playing the faction, and the next in our ‘Getting Started’ style series.

So read on to discover what two of the finest (and by finest, we mean, ‘most attracted to bright colours’) minds of Woehammer had to say about the new Tzeentch Tome.

What’s CHANGED in this Tome? Eh? *cough*

Danny:  So, Patrick – let’s start with what we were hoping for from this book. Put simply, I was hoping for balance. I feel like 3e books (apart from the opening brace of SCE and Orruks, who suffered from time honoured first-book syndrome) have been wonderfully balanced, internally and externally. Such a control and magic heavy army as Tzeentch risked being problematic to balance, so I thought if they could make a few of the lesser seen units more viable without breaking the game, we could all be happy.   How about you?

Patrick: I like variety and flavor, and with a few exceptions (looking at you, Gore-gruntas) AoS 3e has been good about making enough units viable in each tome to prevent mono-build and spam lists. Like you said, heavy magic armies make that balance and viability a little more difficult, but I was mostly hoping to see some varied lists start to show up in the top 10 spots at tournaments.

As someone who plays against Tzeentch rather than as Tzeencth, a selfish part of me was also hoping that the army would be bad. I don’t think I got my wish.

Danny : Good segue to your ‘favourite’ 3 things about this book, and a one line summary of where you think it will land competitively?

Patrick: My favorite part of the book is the spell lores. There are two spell lores with 11 spells between them. All of those spells are great, with maybe one or two exceptions. Tzeentch players are going to be able to customize their Wizards to perform whatever specific task they want. Past there, I think the summoning mechanic is interesting, and generating summoning points with every spell successfully cast means that even high level units like Lords of Change will see summons. I also like that the mechanic gives some counterplay, since your opponent can technically block your summons by killing your heroes, or swarming them with units.

The Change Covens are also great, and you will easily see two different Tzeentch armies have very different playstyles based on the chosen Coven. While some are going to be chosen more often than others for competitive games, I think there is play for each. Guild of Summoners will probably see the most play, but there’s something to be said for Pyrofane Cult and Cult of the Transient Form, both of which improve the utility of your battleline units. Competitively I think we’re going to see this army float to the top for a while.

The options that are presented are strong. I will say that I think the army is going to suffer against some current top contenders, though. Thunder Kroak lists are going to create problems for spellcasting and may be effective enough to delay summoning, and some top-tier Stormcast and Ironjawz lists will present problems for Tzeentch’s relative squishiness. That all being said, Tzeentch was in a good position before this book came out. We’ll see if the win rate breaks the 55% barrier that they were already flirting with.

Big Bird Make More Stuff Cast Good Now

What about you? I expect that you have more experience to see some exciting changes.

Danny: Yep, the new Guild of Summoners capping the 2nd LoC summon at 18 is potentially huge, especially given there are now plenty of ways to generate fate points, including one off guarantee chunks of them. The spells, predictably, do kick ass too – the strongest for me is easily Arcane Suggestion due to the tactical flexibility of it. Choosing whether to turn off commands, -1 to hit and wound, or put an extra -1 rend on a unit is absolutely game-changing in many circumstances

Danny: I’m not sure I agree on the Change Covens though. I like that they offer plenty of conditional battleline now, but they’re definitely not all created equal. Eternal Conflagration giving extra rend to flamers is potentially very strong – combo with the above spell for -2 rend flamers for example, screened by horrors etc.   But I think Hosts Arcanum (one free unbind and nothing else), Transient Form  (very unhelpful fight on death on Acolytes with a 6 generating a Tzangor) (and Pyrofane Cult super niche extra damage from Acolytes shooting) are all hot garbage, basically, and I see no reason to take any of them outside of fluff or really loving your Acolytes and wanting to juice them to the max.

Patrick: Interjection: I do love fluff and Acolytes.

Danny:   Interjection noted!

As a counterpoint, I’m going to list my 3 least favourite things about the book.

1. A whole bunch of the artifacts are geared towards melee (e.g. Daemonheart being a once per battle, number of MWs equal to battleround within 1″ of the bearer) with no good melee heroes to utilise them.

2. The aforementioned Change Coven internal balance – I think there are basically 2.5 competitive ones and 3 assuredly garbage ones. It’s a shame, given they could really have been a way to elevate Tzangors or similar that doesn’t really exist anywhere else in the book.

3. Warscroll wise, there are quite a few heroes who just don’t really seem to have a well defined niche and are variations on a theme. There’s some missing identity and fun factor there for me.

Patrick: I 100% agree on the relics. There are some strong choices, but there’s never a good reason to put a melee-focused option on a Tzeentch Hero. You’re always better off with something that’s going to improve your spellcasting like the Nine-Eyed Tome, or your Destiny Dice mechanic like The Eternal Shroud. I don’t see a lot of good uses for the Arcanite Artefacts at all, though. Especially the “deal mortals equal to the battle round” appearing twice. That is either going to do nothing, or only deal a solid chunk of mortals too late in the game to do anything. I also don’t like the number of “feels bad” mechanics in the book.

The ability for a Lord of Change to simply turn your endless spells back on you is going to feel rotten every time it happens. The presence of a non-interactive Grand Strategy that only requires you to have Destiny Dice equal to or greater than 9 at the end of the battle is bad. It guarantees that you succeed without giving your opponent the opportunity to play around it.

Danny: Moving on – we’re not going to talk about every damn allegiance ability and army enhancement. Some stuff got taken away, some stuff has been streamlined – but let’s quickly talk about Arcane Armies, which is an excellent new rule allowing for a Tzeentch endless spell to be auto-cast before the start of the first turn, which can’t be unbound in the first battle round – how do you see that playing out?

This is huge!

Patrick: I really like Arcane Armies. I think we’ll mostly see the Tome of Eyes to get rerolls on casting. That will guarantee an effective first hero phase, especially for a unit like a Lord of Change, and push some summoning points early on. If the ability was not restricted to faction endless spells I think it would be broken. A guaranteed turn 1 purple sun, or deploying in a way for all of your wizards to get the benefit of the Chronomatic Cogs would be devastating. As it is, it’s a nice ability that won’t be game changing.

Danny: Tome of Eyes is great but it’s hard to overlook Sigil – the ability to do multiple instances of d3 mortals and turn stuff into spawn in both turns of the first battle round – maybe pinning units in place and killing more in melee is potentially huge. I think it is a game changer!

Now, we both agree the artifacts are, overall, a missed opportunity. Do we feel the same way about the command abilities? Any stand outs for you?

Patrick: The Command Abilities either stink or they’re amazing, and there isn’t a lot of in-between. Cult Demagogue providing a 1/6 chance of automatic casting without the ability to be unbound is incredible, and Arcane Sacrifice can seriously improve the function of your wizards early-game, since your opponent will generally want to deploy outside of the 18” danger zone. I personally don’t love the Daemon traits, they don’t seem to synergize well with what the units want to do outside of Arch-Sorcerer providing two extra known spells. (edited)

Outside of those, we are once again seeing a few abilities to improve the melee capabilities of your Arcanite units, which you will never take, and they wasted ink by putting them in the book. (edited)

Patrick: I’m interested in your thoughts on the matched play rules, particularly the grand strategies. I have some strong opinions, but maybe you can provide some counterpoints to my rage. (edited)

Danny : They’re undoubtedly strong. Maybe close or equal to the strongest of any book in 3e so far. Master of Destiny – ‘add the total value of your unused Destiny Dice – score the GS if they’re above 9’ is effectively guaranteed. The others are good, but why would you ever not take this one?

The battle tactics… Call for Change wants you to summon a LoC. In Summoners, with an obvious combo of Enhancements/units, you’ll be able to guarantee this on the appropriate turn at near zero risk. Mass Conjuration needs a wizard casts 3 spells that go off and aren’t unbound in a turn. You’re Tzeentch so this isn’t hard. Ninefold Dismantlemant asks you to kill a unit with 9 or more models, or a monster with 9+ wounds. This will be almost any unit, in reality, on the board. Reckless Abandon wants a moral more than 18″ from an enemy to complete a charge – bit naff but ways to get it done. And Tides of Anarchy wants you to take control of an objective from your opponent and have 9+ models within 6″ of it.

Now, as a DoK player I’ve heard plenty of salt about trivially easy to score battle tactics. They’re obviously one of the main vectors a book can become unbalanced along. And it’s pretty clear to see DoT are going to have an incredibly easy time of scoring 3-4 of their book tactics every game. Given I think the army plays the mission very well anyway, yeah I’m going to agree with your implication Patrick, these are over-tuned and almost impossible for your opponent to deny in most match ups.

Should we move onto the warscrolls? Who do you think are the biggest winners?

These guys hit hard now.

Patrick: The changes to Arcane Tome for the Fateskimmer and Fluxmaster are great. The security provided by a reroll alone is excellent, but adding 3 to the value of the second attempt makes most spells a guaranteed cast. The Blue ascribe is also an insanely flexible caster, and I expect we will see him used in most lists. The gaunt summoners created some rumblings over their new Lords of the Silver Towers ability, potentially one-shotting an enemy hero. The summoner has to survive the initial attacks to use the ability, however, and if an opponent can’t kill a Gaunt Summoner in one round then they deserve what’s coming.

I think Tzaangors Skyfires are going to show up a good bit, too. Their speed and flying makes them an excellent harassing unit, and the ability to ignore hit/wound penalties with their bows means they might pose a threat to more targets. Special shout out to Kairos Acolytes. I wouldn’t describe them as good, but Arcane Cataclysm made them pretty bad. The Battletome corrects all the changes, and leaves them pretty much identical to their 2e profile.

Danny: Agreed, Skyfires doing d3 mws on 6s combos nicely with Fate Dice, and I think a unit of 6 will be common given how reliably they can snipe off support heroes at range – their movement and relative durability make them excellent objective grabbers too. I think it’s fair to say everything that was already good, stayed good – including Screamers, even if they lost their extra damage to wizards, at 100 points and with their newly reliable combat profile, they’re fantastic value. In general, things got more consistent – especially flamers.

For me, the losers are Tzangors, on foot and Enlightened. I just don’t really get what they do now, aside from look pretty. I also nominate a fair few heroes – Curseling, the Ogroids, Tzaangor Shaman especially – as being highly uninteresting now. But overall, there are some serious buff bots here with plenty of fun and powerful rules. Be prepared to have many of your models turn into spawn…

Ok let’s wrap this up. I wanted to hold back my reaction to your competitive rating until now – and I think I agree. Some folks are bemoaning what the book has lost, but overall I think it contains board control (horrors, Sigil, fast cheap grabbers), extremely powerful magic, and A+/S tier matched play rules.

Weaknesses will be fast, aggressive armies and powerful shooting that can shut down their casting momentum. I predict it’ll take some time to bed in, but then we’ll absolutely see it taking down podiums but not reaching the heights of Nurgle, Seraphon or SCE – certainly not this season anyway.

Patrick: I completely agree. I expect that they will break the 55% win rate barrier. There are a handful of rules that they lost, but I think what they gained more than makes up for it. The only real complaint I have comes from me being an opponent rather than a player, but I don’t want to restate what I’ve already said. Overall, this is a great tome, and I think Tzeentch players have a lot to love.

And there you have it! Bird fans – agree, disagree, just want to talk about how good big birds are? Let us know in the comments, twitter or discord! We’d also love to know what you think of this review format. Don’t be shy now.



A Newcomer’s Guide to the Emperor’s Children

The Emperor’s Children were the only legion to bear the Palatine Aquila, the Emperor’s standard. The Emperor’s Children embodied all aspects of what the Emperor expected from the legiones astartes. They were noble, loyal, strong, and civilized. These expectations drove the third legion to seek absolute perfection. This desire for perfection led to their twisting of pride into a desire for excess and hedonism. Once the legion began to follow the Warmaster their martial prowess saw massacres and brutality against the Imperium performed by the hands of a once-loyal legion.

The IIIrd Legion’s Primarch – Fulgrim

Flawless Execution

The martial prowess of the Emperor’s Children is represented through a tremendously powerful legion tactic. When an Emperor’s Children unit performs a charge make their melee attacks one initiative step higher than normal. Note that this expressly works after any initiative modifiers are taken into account. Any Vehicle units gain +1 to hit when firing with defensive weapons during a reaction.

At first glance this seems very minor, but the execution of this rule is extremely powerful. Because wounds and casualties are determined at the end of each initiative step, if a model is removed as a casualty before it has the chance to fight in a combat, that model’s attacks are lost. If two opposing models have the same initiative, all the wounds and casualties are considered to happen simultaneously, so a model removed as a casualty still has the opportunity to deal damage on the way down. This rule gives the Emperor’s Children the ability to severely reduce the amount of incoming damage following a charge, by removing a threat before it has the chance to strike.

This also greatly improves the use of Unwieldy weapons, since this increase happens after initiative modifiers are calculated. A powerfist hitting at Initiative 2 allows an Emperor’s Chosen Cataphractii squad the chance to hit opposing terminators with valuable Instant Death attacks before they are allowed the chance to die in kind. This also increases the ability for the Emperor’s Children to build expert duelists through Centurions and Praetors, who already strike at higher Initiative than most units. A high-value character issuing a challenge can potentially kill the enemy warlord before they have the chance to strike back.

At the end of the day this trait will make the third legion a dangerous melee threat. Not because they hit harder, but because they can reduce the risk of incoming damage. Overall, this cements the Emperor’s Children as a powerful melee faction.

Warlord Traits

There are three warlord traits to choose from for the Emperor’s Children, and they highlight an interesting dynamic for the game as a whole. The game does not dictate loyalty to the Emperor simply from the choice of legion. Yes, the Emperor’s Children are considered a traitor legion, but they can be played as loyalists. The warlord traits reflect this by providing one trait that can only be taken by traitors, one that can only be taken by loyalists, and one that is alliance agnostic. Each trait is solid, and they provide huge benefits with some key restrictions.

The first trait, The Broken Mirror, is restricted to warlords with the Traitor allegiance. It allows some morale mitigation for multi-model units within 12” of the warlord. If a unit that meets the conditions fails a morale check, instead of falling back, it takes a single wound that can’t be negated in any way and is then considered to have passed the morale check.

The second trait requires you to play a loyalist warlord. A warlord with the Martyrs of Isstvan trait makes any unit locked in combat with a legiones astartes unit with the traitor allegiance gain a bonus to hit. Consider this in context with the legion tactic and you’ll see that this can force your opponent to be careful about how they choose to engage a key unit with your warlord attached. The only issue is the target restriction, especially since the release of the latest books may see more games played where this warlord trait would not come into use.

The final warlord trait, Paragon of Excellence, can be played by either allegiance. This trait combines some function of the previous two by improving units’ combat abilities through morale. Every unit that passes a morale check within 12” of the warlord gains a bonus to their Weapon Skill until the end of the Emperor’s Children’s player’s next turn. Given the relatively high leadership values of marine armies, and the ability to improve that morale by attaching independent characters to key units, you will regularly trigger this ability.

Rites of War

The Emperor’s Children have two Rites of War. Both rites focus on generally improving the function of your infantry, either by adding a bonus to movement and positioning or by providing access to unique enhancements.

The first rite, The Maru Skara, will provide you with movement buffs that place you on par with the White Scars. By taking this rite, you have the option to place four of your Elite, Troop, or Fast Attack units into reserves. The units that remain on the battlefield gain a +1 to their Move characteristic until the turn that the reserve units are brought in. This is important to note, since your standard marine gaining a +1 to Move also means that they gain +1 to Charge rolls.

The second Rite, IIIrd Company Elite, allows you to take Kakophoni squads as troops. It also allows you to give all models in any given Infantry unit a surgical augmentation. The bonuses from these augmentations do a lot to offset the points cost of the equipment. You also need to have a good system of tracking which unit has which enhancement. Variety is nice, but your game can move at a snail’s pace if you increase your bookkeeping load too much.

Legion-specific Enhancements

Speaking of surgical augmentations: there are three to choose from. All of them require the Traitor allegiance and can only be placed on Character models. Sonic Shriekers provides a to-hit penalty to your opponents any time they are charged or charge your unit, so long as that enemy unit isn’t immune to Fear(X). Sub-sonic Pulsers remove the penalties to Leadership and Ballistic Skill imposed by Night Fighting. The final augmentation, a Sonic Lance, provides your model with a Template weapon with Breaching and Pinning, although the low strength value will limit its effectiveness against many opponents. The Lance can be effective on a large unit of Tactical Marines or Despoilers in a IIIrd Company Elite force, providing as many as 20 template weapons in a squad for a mere 30 points.

Outside of these augmentations, there are two power weapon upgrades: a sword and a lance. The lance is usually a better upgrade on the units that can take it, since the combination of Murderous Strike, Breaching, and a strength bonus will see more utility. There is something to be said about the benefits of a power sword with Rending and Murderous Strike, since your 6s to wound are going to be devastating when they happen. The upgrade on the sword will also make your Word Bearers friends jealous, since they pay 10 points for the same upgrade.

The Emperor’s Children also gain access to the Phoenix Warden, a unique consul upgrades for your centurions. Think of the Phoenix Warden as a modified champion, with rules focused on improving melee efficiency for himself and other units around him. The issue is that any bonus he gains from the Skill Unmatched special rule always reduces his attacks or Weapon Skill, and his Living Icons ability can more easily be attained through Legion Vexillas. Overall not a bad option, and decently flavorful, but the rules could use a tweak, given the points cost for the upgrade.

Lord Commander Eidolon

Legion Specific Units

As Primarchs go, Fulgrim is relatively straightforward. He’s a melee beatstick, with a collection of tools and rules to exceed in that role. Ost standard units are going to have a hard time dealing with him once the combat begins, but, as with most Primarchs, he can be played around simply by keeping him out of combat. He doesn’t have any real movement buffs and his increased Bulky value when compared to other Primarchs (Fulgrim demands more legroom) means that he will need something akin to a Land Raider Spartan to carry him and a retinue.

Past Fulgrim, the third legion brings along a pair of melee units, Phoenix Terminators and Palatine Blade Squads which are melee-oriented, buffed versions of Tartaros squads and Veteran squads, respectively. The final infantry squad available is the Kakophoni Squad. These are a sort of Heavy Support Squad with special weapons and surgical augmentations unique to the Emperor’s Children. Overall, an Emperor’s Children player should feel pleased with the units here. None of them will blow you away, but all three have solid rules and equipment.

In addition to the above units, there are three unique characters: Lord Commander Eidolon, Captain Saul Tarvitz, and Captain Lucius. Eidolon is a mildly upgrades jump-pack Praetor with some flavorful wargear. His warlord trait provides bonuses to fight a selected “Rival” at the cost of limiting his ability to declare reacitons. Saul Tarvitz is another upgrades Praetor, but significantly cheaper than the other two. He has a bevy of rules that ultimately break down to make him very good at fighting other Emperor’s Children. If your local meta has a bunch of other third legion players he may see some use, otherwise you’re probably better off with a Phoenix Warden Centurion.

The final character, Captain Lucius, is designed to be an excellent duelist. You want him in melee immediately, and you want him issuing and responding to challenges as often as he can. His warlord trait allows any unit to which he is attached to benefit from the Fearless special rule so long as he is engaged in a challenge.

All three of the characters are interesting, but I don’t see Eidolon or Tarvitz fitting into every list. Model collectors and painters can’t go wrong here, though, as all three models are stunning. The detail present on each model does a fantastic job of displaying exactly how obsessed with decorum the third legion was.

Final Thoughts

Given the above, the Emperor’s Children make a mean melee legion. Gaining combat advantages on the charge can be played around, however, and a savvy opponent will know to focus down the right targets at the right time. Positioning and timing are important, but the Emperor’s Children demand perfection, and they are certainly capable of attaining it.

What’s Next

As this article is part of a series, I will spend the next few months going into more detail about the rules of the game and the specifics of each legion. I would like to know if there is specific content our readers would like to see, so leave a comment or join us in the Woehammer discord to let us know what points you would like to see discussed.

Top Three AoS Lists for Game Knight GT

This is the Top Three AoS Lists for the Game Knight Grand Tournament that took place in London, Ontario, Canada on the 17th and 18th of September. It involved 22 players vying to be crowned champion in a 5 game tournament.

Before I jump into the Top Three AoS Lists, I wanted to remind everyone of our friendly Discord server where you can join in the conversation with the Woehammer crew and suggest articles or series for the website.

If you like what we’re doing, why not join our Patreon and help keep it going?

Also if there’s a one day or two day tournament you’d like us to cover drop us a comment on this post and we’ll have a look at it for you.

The Top Three AoS Lists

Army Faction: Sons of Behemat
Army Type: Breaker Tribe
– Grand Strategy: Make the land tremble!
– Triumphs: Inspired

LEADER
1 x Gatebreaker (525)*
General
– Command Traits: Monstrously Tough
– Artefacts: Enchanted Portcullis
1 x Warstomper (470)*
Artefacts: Amulet of Destiny
1 x Gatebreaker (525)**
Artefacts: Arcane Tome
– Spells: Flaming Weapon
1 x Warstomper (470)**

CORE BATTALIONS:
*Bosses of the Stomp – Magnificent
**Bosses of the Stomp – Magnificent

TOTAL POINTS: (1990/2000)

Brett: Sons of Behemat continuing to benefit from the Season 1 GHB taking out an event this time. Lately we’ve seen a lot of 3 Gatebreaker, Krondspine lists in the podium, this time it’s a more traditional (?) 2 x Gatebreakers and 2 x Warstomper. From the top Breaker Tribe but no loathing shown, and no Mancrushers in the list, with 2 x Bosses of the Stomp for extra artefacts. Grand Strategy is Make the Land Tremble – a unit needs to make a run or charge move every round, very hard to stop. Gatebreaker general with Monstrously Tough (extra 5 wounds) and Enchanted Portcullis (6+ ward). The first Warstomper also has a 6+ ward (Amulet of Destiny) and lastly the other Gatebreaker has Arcane Tome with Flaming Weapon (+1 damage)A tanky build with 2 of the Gargants having more than 40 effective wounds thanks to traits and artefacts.

If you move the Portcullis to another gargant instead of the General there would have been 3 Gargants with more than 40 effective wounds. First round draw against Slaves, the slaves list was running the new Legionnaires and mostly had small units with Be’lakor. Warstompers are less efficient into smaller units with their Titanic Boulder clubs attacks reducing quickly (it caps at 10). The same is true of the Sylvaneth list he faced in round 2. He maxed all of his other rounds including the last against the only other player to max all of his rounds. That match up against Fangs of Sotek would have favoured the Sons with the wards helping against Mortal Wounds and the Warstompers having max attacks against the big Skink blocks. A great run and nice to see a little variation in an army with so few warscrolls.

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Army Faction: Seraphon
Army Type: Starborne
– Army Subfaction: Fangs of Sotek
– Grand Strategy: The Astromatrix
– Triumphs: Inspired

LEADER
1 x Lord Kroak (430)*
General
1 x Skink Starpriest (130)*
Spells: Hand of Glory
1 x Saurus Astrolith Bearer (140)**
Artefacts: Serpent God Dagger
1 x Stegadon with Skink Chief (305)**
Skystreak Bow
– Artefacts: Cloak of Feathers
– Mount Traits: Celestial Destruction
1 x Skink Priest (90)**
Prayers: Curse

BATTLELINE
30 x Skinks (225)*
Skink Alpha
– Boltspitter and Moonstone Club
30 x Skinks (225)*
Skink Alpha
– Boltspitter and Moonstone Club
10 x Skinks (75)*
Skink Alpha
– Boltspitter
– Celestite Dagger and Star-buckler
5 x Saurus Guard (115)*
Saurus Guard Alpha
– Stardrake Icon Bearer
– Wardrummer

BEHEMOTH
1 x Bastiladon with Solar Engine (250)*

CORE BATTALIONS:
*Battle Regiment
**Command Entourage – Magnificent

TOTAL POINTS: (1985/2000)

Brett: Seraphon have continued to be strong for a very long time, not least because of the number of builds they can use. I prefer Fangs of Sotek to Thunder Lizard, not that I play Seraphon, but I think it plays to the mission better. And allows you to stop your opponent playing the mission as well. Choosing a named character as General (Kroak) loses you a Command Trait so it’s not often seen. Still 6 casts and Kroak’s unlimited range +2 dispel/unbind magic is going to be in their favour. Saurus guard are acting as body guards, the Skink Chief, Starpriest and Priest are buffing Skinks and the Astrolith Bearer providing a 6+ ward to units within 12″. Lots of leaders but the core of this list is the 2 x 30 Skink units.

They can be teleported within 9″ (with a 16″ weapon), with more than 15 models they have an extra attack (Unleash Hell with 60 attacks before any other buffs). Before being teleported they will be granted +1 to hit (Skink Priest), +1 attack (Skink Chief – melee only), 6s do a mortal wound in addition with at least +1 to their save and likely 6+ ward. If they have their buffs that unit is potentially doing 25 mortal wounds in addition to any other damage. Skinks look inoffensive but in a large group with buffs they are anything but. Rounding out this potential is the Bastilidon with Solar Engine and the Starbourne summoning which makes Descrate Lands and Against the Odds really easy. They can also pick up Barge through Enemy Lines with a teleport and summon.

That is before the 3 wizards inflict Mortals – Kroak can inflict D3 MW on 3 units 4 times a turn (on a 2+). Your best bet is to go first and try to concentrate on removing as many skinks as possible. A bit easier since they are in the large 30 man units rather than say 2 x 20 with 3 x 10 Skink screens. Once they start getting their buffs they become a much bigger threat and even out ranging them isn’t a guarantee. They will potentially pick up a 15 strong unit of Blood Stalkers or Namarti Reavers following a teleport within 9″. Tanky Gargants seem to be a counter otherwise Michael scored maximum points in each of his 4 previous battles to finish with a great, almost perfect 4/1.

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Army Faction: Idoneth Deepkin
Army Subfaction: Mor’phann
– Grand Strategy: The Creeping Gloomtide
– Triumphs: Inspired

LEADER
1 x Akhelian King (250)*
General
– Command Traits: Unstoppable Fury
– Bladed Polearm and Falchion
– Artefacts: Arcane Tome
– Mount Traits: Voidchill Darkness
– Spells: Flaming Weapon
1 x Isharann Soulrender (120)*
1 x Isharann Soulrender (120)*

BATTLELINE
30 x Namarti Reavers (510)*
Icon Bearer
30 x Namarti Thralls (390)*
Icon Bearer
3 x Akhelian Ishlaen Guard (195)*
Lochian Prince
– Standard Bearer
– Musician
3 x Akhelian Morrsarr Guard (195)*
Standard Bearer
– Lochian Prince
– Musician
3 x Akhelian Ishlaen Guard (195)*
Lochian Prince
– Standard Bearer
– Musician

TERRAIN
1 x Gloomtide Shipwreck (0)

CORE BATTALIONS:
*Battle Regiment

TOTAL POINTS: (1975/2000)

Brett: Straight forward Idoneth list anchored on Namarti with eels for extra mobility. Good to see the eels in a podium list. No real spell casting (1 cast/unbind from Arcane tome), as Morphann the Soulrenders can return and additional 3 models when using their Lurelight to return D3 models. That makes the Namarti much harder to clear particularly since the Gloomtide Shipwreck is garrionsable and give a 5+ ward within 6″. All of the Akehlian’s benefit on the charge with additional rend and damage (King and Morrsarr), and saves (Ishalean). The King is the only model with upgrades which include Unstoppable Fury (+2 attacks for each unit within 3″ in High Tide), Arcane Tome/Flaming Weapon (+1 damage) and Voidchill Darkness (-1 hit to enemy attackers).

The Shipwreck is probably central to this list, in combination with Tides of Death. In the first 2 tides the reavers (and thralls) are key units, wearing you down and stopping you getting to the King and Eels. Then in turn 3 and 4 the King and Eels can unleash and take advantage of run and charge/retreat and charge. 2 units of Eels can fit (no they can’t – they have mounts) in the Shipwreck with the Soulrenders to keep those Narmarti coming back. 30 models with a 5+ save and 6+ ward is hard to shift unless you have a lot of rend. His only loss was to Nighthaunt Scarlet Doom, another army that regrows and can retreat and charge in every round. And really important, they ignore rend, ultimately this army is a rend army. 4/1 is a strong performance, it’s great to see Idoneth on a the podium.

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Army Faction: Hedonites of Slaanesh
Army Type: Invaders
– Subfaction: The Lurid Haze
– Grand Strategy: Defend What’s Ours
– Triumph: Inspired

LEADERS
Sigvald (205)**
General
The Contorted Epitome (245)**
General
– Command Traits: Feverish Anticipation
– Artefacts of Power: Oil of Exultation
– Spells: Hysterical Frenzy
Shardspeaker of Slaanesh (135)**
Artefacts of Power: The Rod of Misrule
Spells: Battle Rapture

BATTLELINE
Blissbarb Archers (420)***
High Tempter
Blissbarb Archers (140)***
High Tempter
Blissbarb Archers (140)***
High Tempter

OTHER
Symbaresh Twinsouls (260)*
Egopomp
Symbaresh Twinsouls (260)*
Egopomp
Mindstealer Sphiranx (95)*

ENDLESS SPELLS & INVOCATIONS
1 x Purple Sun of Shyish (70)

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

TOTAL POINTS: 1970/2000

Brett: For our last list we have 4th, Mitch, who really really likes Blissbarb Archers. Fewer Leaders to increase the troops units but Sigvald and the Contorted Epitome are present with the less common Shardspeaker, it’s Twisted Mirror can give the Twinsouls +1 to wound or have the Epitome wounding on 3s. 3 casts/dispels from the Epitome and Shardspeaker. The Epitome gives rerolls to charges to one unit (Feverish Anticipation) and has an extra wound (Oil of Exultation). The Shardspeaker is carrying the Rod of Misrule (generate command points). The spells do Mortal Wounds (Hysterical Frenzy) and Battleshock modifications (Battle Rapture).

The double reinforced Blisbarb unit can move up to 12” and still shoot giving it a 30” threat range. The 2 unreinforced Blissbarbs are trading pieces and even screens. Expert Conquerors strengthens that role by giving the strong objective control. With the twinsouls supporting the Shardspeaker and Blissbarbs this list will generate a lot of depravity points either inflicting or taking wounds. So a Keeper of Secrets isn’t too far away. As we’ve seen a few times Scarlet Doom was his only loss but the list also scored a little lower than others, a symptom of its fragility perhaps.

Final Tournament Placings

Top Three AoS Lists for Cryhammer

This is the Top Three AoS Lists for the Cryhammer that took place near Warsaw, Poland on 24th and 25th September. It involved 30 players vying to be crowned champion in a 5 game tournament.

Before I jump into the Top Three AoS Lists, I wanted to remind everyone of our friendly Discord server where you can join in the conversation with the Woehammer crew and suggest articles or series for the website.

If you like what we’re doing, why not join our Patreon and help keep it going?

Also if there’s a one day or two day tournament you’d like us to cover drop us a comment on this post and we’ll have a look at it for you.

The Top Three AoS Lists

Army Faction: Seraphon
Army Type: Coalesced
– Subfaction: Thunder Lizard
– Grand Strategy: Defend What’s Ours
– Triumph: Inspired

LEADERS
Lord Kroak (430)**
Saurus Astrolith Bearer (140)**
Artefacts of Power: Fusil of Conflagration
Skink Priest (90)**
Prayers: Heal
Skink Starseer (145)**
Spells: Hand of Glory
Engine of the Gods (265)***
General
– Command Traits: Prime Warbeast
– Artefacts of Power: Cloak of Feathers
– Mount Traits: Beastmaster
– Prayers: Curse

BATTLELINE
5x Saurus Guard (115)*
Stardrake Icon Bearer
– Wardrummer
– Saurus Guard Alpha
10x Skinks (75)*
Skink Alpha
– Boltspitter, Celestite Dagger and Star-buckler
10x Skinks (75)*
Skink Alpha
– Boltspitter, Celestite Dagger and Star-buckler

BEHEMOTH
Bastiladon with Ark of Sotek (165)***
Bastiladon with Ark of Sotek (165)***
Bastiladon with Solar Engine (250)***

ENDLESS SPELLS & INVOCATIONS
1 x Purple Sun of Shyish (70)

TERRAIN
1 x Realmshaper Engine (0)

CORE BATTALIONS
*Expert Conquerors
**Command Entourage – Magnificent – Artefact
***Linebreaker

Additional Enhancements
Artefact

Total: 1985 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 0 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 105
Drops: 11

Brett: Starting off with a Seraphon, Thunder Lizard, and most of the big hitters from Seraphon. A spell heavy list (with Kroak), supported by an Astrolith Bearer, Engine of the Gods, Skink Priest and Starseer. This gives 5 casts and Kroak knows the entire Lore of Celestial Domination. The general (Engine of the Gods) has all of the mandatory traits and artefacts for Thunder Lizard (which gives +2 wounds to all of the beasts) granting +1 attack and a shooting attack (D3 MW on a 3-4 and D6 on a 5-6). The skinks are mostly here as screens but enjoy buffs from the Priests (including Engine of the Gods) improving their saves, hit rolls and potentially number of attacks).

The Bastildons are the combat arm of this list. With a Solar Engine and 2 x Ark of Sotek that are really only vulnerable to Mortal Wounds in their top bracket and many many attacks. Mortal Wounds on 6s and buffs from Kroak, the Priests and Starpriest just to make them harder to deal with. The list hasn’t changed much (if at all) since the Battletome dropped in 2nd edition. Skinks screen the bigger units as they more up, Saurus Guard as bodyguards for the wizards and ranged offence from wizards (minor) and the Solar Engine. Eventually the Arks will charge your line. All the while they are scoring points with their mobility and summoning.

It doesn’t sound like much but they stopped a Sons list in it’s tracks and took a host of dragons on (and won) so the output is there to.

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

Leaders
Lord-Castellant (155)*
Lord-Relictor (145)*
General
– Command Trait: High Priest
– Artefact: Mirrorshield
– Prayer: Translocation

Battleline
5 x Liberators (115)*
Heavens-wrought Weapon and Shield
5 x Judicators with Boltstorm Crossbows (190)*
5 x Judicators with Boltstorm Crossbows (190)*

Units
4 x Stormdrake Guard (680)*
Drakerider’s Warblade
– Reinforced x 1
1 x Stormstrike Chariot (165)**
1 x Stormstrike Chariot (165)**
1 x Stormstrike Chariot (165)**

Core Battalions
*Battle Regiment
**Redemption Brotherhood

Additional Enhancements
Holy Command: Call for Aid

Total: 1970 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 1 / 4
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 116
Drops: 2

Brett: Stormcast are always a chance to podium even if they aren’t the most powerful faction they do have some really strong options (Drakes). Their durability combines with medium output to make them a difficult opponent much of the time. Classic leader choices in the Lord Castellant and Relictor with the Relictor as the general. The Castellant’s lantern providing either a +1 to save or mortal wounds is why you take him (and his 8 wounds). The Relictor has High Priest (reroll chants), Mirrorshield to prevent ranged attacks and Translocation. He has a natural +1 to chants so doesn’t really need High Priest but if you want to make sure of a heal then it’s important. Translocate is useful to move a Galletian Veteran unit to somewhere unoccupied. Or some bowmen, 18″ range means they often need that little bit of help and they are GV in anycase.

The Judicator’s with Boltstorm are becoming very popular, they get 2 hits for every successful to hit roll. It’s very feasible to have more hits than your roll and they wound on a 3+. No rend though. Unusually Lukasz took Call for Aid to return the Liberators if they are destroyed not Thunderbolt Volley for double shooting. There is a very big hammer in the 4 drakes, their breath attacks are potentially devastating (if unreliable) and combined generate 39 rend 1 and 2 attacks. They are also 36 wounds with a 3+ save, hard to get rid of. Perhaps a bit unusual is the number of chariots, 3. There is a battle report from Measured Gamine with 5 though.

The Stormstrike Chariot is a bit of a sleeper, very fast with 12 wounds it does MW on a 4+ based on it’s charge roll. More of a blocker than a destroyer but if all 3 charge on average that’s 10 mortal wounds. The most damaging part of their attacks are the Gryphons towing the chariot, 6 attacks at rend 2. There’s no doubt this is a good list but Lukasz still played very well to take down Sons and KO armies before losing in the last round to the eventual winner. Since the chariots are a great counter to Bastildons I’d say the Skinks screened well.

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Allegiance: Sons of Behemat
– Tribe: Breaker Tribe (Fierce Loathing: Idiots with Flags)
– Grand Strategy: No Place for the Weak
– Triumphs: Inspired

Leaders
Gatebreaker Mega-Gargant (525)*
General
– Command Trait: Monstrously Tough
– Artefact: Amulet of Destiny
Gatebreaker Mega-Gargant (525)*
Artefact: Vial of Manticore Venom
Gatebreaker Mega-Gargant (525)*

Behemoths
Krondspine Incarnate of Ghur (400)
Allies

Core Battalions
*Bosses of the Stomp – Magnificent

Additional Enhancements
Artefact

Total: 1975 / 2000
Reinforced Units: 0 / 4
Allies: 400 / 400
Wounds: 105
Drops: 4

Brett: Resurgent Sons on the podium again, following the now familiar 3 x Megas and an Incarnate. The Fierce Loathing is Idiots with Flags, not seen as often as Bossy Pants maybe but really good if you have a lot of elite (Stormcast etc) opponents. The General is Monstrously Tough (40 wounds not 35) and has the Amulet of Destiny for a 6+ ward. The extra artefact is Manticore Venom for +1 to wound rolls, frightening on the Gatebreaker’s Flail. The Krondspine provides some protection against Endless Spells with no casting, that alone is a reason for Sons to look favourably on it. It also lets you take 3 Gatebreakers instead of 2 with 2 Warstompers, a solid upgrade.

Losing only the mirror match, which probably came down to priorities, Jack stomped (pun intended) all of his opponents including the durable Nurgle on his way to 3rd.

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Army Faction: Sylvaneth
Subfaction: Heartwood
– Grand Strategy: Take What’s Theirs
– Triumph: Bloodthirsty
– Season: Everdusk

LEADERS
Warsong Revenant (305)*
General
– Command Traits: Spellsinger
– Spells: Verdant Blessing, Verdurous Harmony Arch-Revenant (120)*
Spirit of Durthu (370)*
Artefacts of Power: Greenwood Gladius (Guardian Sword)

BATTLELINE
Kurnoth Hunters with Kurnoth Scythes (500)*
Tree-Revenants (110)*
Glade Banner Bearer
– Waypipes
– Scion
– Protector Glaive
Dryads (100)*
Branch Nymph

OTHER
Gossamid Archers (220)*
Flitwing Scion
Revenant Seekers (235)*
Revenant Soulwarden
– Seeker Banner Bearer
– Seeker Hornblower

ENDLESS SPELLS & INVOCATIONS
1 x Spiteswarm Hive (40)

TERRAIN
1 x Awakened Wyldwood (0)

CORE BATTALIONS
*Battle Regiment

TOTAL POINTS: 2000/2000

Brett: Mix of the familiar and the new in this Sylvaneth list. The Leaders (Warsong and Arch Revenants with Spirit of Durthu) are among the most common. The Warsong is creating and using Wyldwoods as spell portals and can cause serious harm with her Swarm of Spites. Durthu has the Greenwood Gladius for additional attacks. The Arch-Revenant gives +1 to wound to the Kurnoth Hunters, great with the 3 rend Scythes. The less familiar elements are the new Gossamid Archers and the Revenant Seekers. Of course the Seekers will stay close to the Kurnoth to return slain models if necessary. The Gossamid Archers can retreat 12″ after they unleash Hell. With no rend that’s not as bad as it sounds (hitting on 4+) but 6s do D3 Mortal Wounds.

With only 2 casts this isn’t a heavy magic list and relies on the Kurnoth and Durthu for most of their threat on top of the Warsong’s mortal wound output. His 2 losses, against Kharadron Overlords and Sons of Behemat, are probably down to their ability to minimise or remove threats. Kharadron can avoid the Warsong’s Mortals in early turns and make the most of their shooting to remove the Kurnoth for example. Gossamid’s are also likely to struggle. Thrown boulders will remove the Gossamid’s pretty quickly (3 rend into a 5+ save) and the Kurnoth can’t remove a Gargant in a single team.

As we move deeper into the season we are still seeing a range of factions at the top, within those factions the are less and less surprises. We are seeing optimisation around the new books or new rules with older books and with more reps the strongest units stand out. That will stabilise even more heading into the new Season which should give GW plenty of opportunity to shake things up.

Final Tournament Placings