In this blog entry I'd like to explain the best options we have for ally choices when running the Clan Pestilens alleigance. As a Skaven army, we can ally with all the other Skaven factions (Clans Verminus, Eshin, Skryre, Moulder and the Masterclan) as well as Nurgle Daemons. Obviously covering every single model we can ally in is a bit fruitless, so I'll just be talking the best options for matched play.
Clanrats (Clan Verminus)
Oh Clanrats, don't you ever go changing on me. These guys really just pull their weight in any list they're in. 200pts for 40 bodies with a buffable armor save. Sit these blokes on an objective, screen your army with them, or just run them forward and let the plague monks flank and smack the enemy from the side. Clanrats retreat and charge, and add 2 to their run and charge rules, making them shockingly mobile for getting in the way of the enemy. I will never not recommend these, and every pestilens player should have at least 40 painted and ready to go.
Arch Warlock (Clan Skryre)
140pts for a caster that knows 2 spells, I still feel a little dirty taking this guy because surely his costing is a typo. Factor in his unique spell is 3 Arcane Bolts to fire at your leisue, and you've got a sneaky, durable and brutal hero skulking around the back line obliterating any enemy that dares to come at you and forcing battleshock tests on 3-4 enemy infantry blocks every damn turn.
Screaming Bell (The Masterclan)
The bell tolls for FREE SUMMONING. I mean sure, it's on the roll of a 12, but imagine spending 200pts on a versatile mobile buff/debuff/damage output machine and accidentally summoning the Lord Skreech Verminking 100% free of charge and him dropping the Thirteenth Dreaded Spell on some poor unsuspecting elite infantry block. But I digress, even without the free Verminlord gimmick this is the bell for you, random damage output, a unique spell that puts stormcast in the oven and sets it to fanbake, and a command ability that can pretty much always be at least slightly useful.
Lord Skreech Verminking (The Masterclan)
Getting your ass royally beat? Reach for the king. Verminking does everything you'd expect from the lord of all Verminlords, he'll duel any character in the game and shred them (if he fights first, but that's just the Verminlord deal), he'll move across the board with incredible speed to lock down objectives, he'll heal himself if he has to and if anyone even DARES to come at him without a reliable dispell, the Dreaded Thirteenth Spell will blast a hole in anything it hits and then replace the casualties with FREE clanrats. His command ability will always be useful in any skaven army (Skaven units reroll wound rolls when near Verminking) so that's nice.
Gutter Runners (Clan Eshin)
These guys weigh in at 60 for 5, or 200 for 20. Cheeky backfield bombers that pop in from a board edge in your movement phase and get to run and shot where necessary. Essentially what Gutter Runners are is the only reliable backfield mobility skaven has, given everything else has a dice roll or too many conditions. They're a niche, meta dependent pick but having a full strength unit of 20 in your list is basically never a waste. They're average when they're not needed, and amazing when they are.
Verminlord Warpseer (The Masterclan)
This lad wouldn't have made the list during General's Handbook 2017, but free summonig made his command ability at least not pointless, and being the Verminlord dedicated to being a wizard he's going to come in handy during the hype phase of Endless Spells. Also, watching his unique spell burn holes in the unique named characters that can fly (Pro Tip, all of them except ours) is always satisfying. He can rip through infantry with his Warp-Glaive, and he's surprisingly survivable getting to reroll all his failed save. A niche pick, but not a bad one.
Warpgrinder Weapon Team (Clan Skryre)
Fresh off the assembly line with a points drop for Generals Hanbook 2018, this beast can put 40 plague monks directly behind the enemy and essentially force the opponent to adjust their plans or get rammed by 240 points of absolutely balanced, totally fair and family friendly foetid blades. Which for reference will wind up being around 120 attacks.
And lucky last...
THANQUOL AND THE BONERIPPER
You read that right, Mr Chosen of the Horned Rat himself just got yet another point reduction, 400pts for the greatest and most clever seer to ever live and his walking, chittering battering ram. Thanquol is an absolute unit, he does everything and he does it well. His unique spell is Arcane Bolt at greater range (before it got gimped), he heals himself every turn with no condition, he knows the spells of every skaven wizard near him (oh hey Arch Warlock) and casts those spells better, because he has the warpstone token rule the Grey Seer model has but with absolutely no negative consequences should it fail. His command ability is the AOS equivilent of an invulnerable save on any unit of skaven that gets better if there's more than 13 models in the unit, absolutely insane. And all these benefits are just the bloke on the top, lets talk about the four armed gentleman down bottom. Boneripper is one HELL of a beatstick, he comes with two weapon loadouts, one is a melee attack that outshines any weapon in the entire Skaven line. The other option is a ranged attack that does 2D6 mortal wounds to anything within 8inches. No aiming, no hit rolls, no mercy. Whichever you choose, he has a second melee attack that's respectable as hell. These two will consume your entire ally choice points at 2k, but ****** he will do work.