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JamesT

Tournament Builds and How to Counter Them

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EDIT: This post has been revised to include other builds posted by community members(thanks for the input!), and has had formatting fixed for readability)

With the Las Vegas Open being just under two weeks ago, I thought I'd start a little thread for people going to help them prepare.  Sometimes a player loses a game simply because they were not fully aware of what an opponents army does. So, with that in mind, here a few that I can think of, and what you can do help your games against them! Please feel free to reply to this thread with things of your own, as I think it would be cool to build a list of both popular and less popular powerful builds succinctly. 

Changehost:

Spoiler

 

What it does: It's as popular as it is hated. A Lord of Change leads an army of horrors(Pinks, Blues, and Brims) and usually some support heroes such as a Herald, Blue Scribes, and Changeling. It allows units to swap within 27" of the Lord of Change depending on the number of units in the battalion. So while you may premeasure 18.1" away from the Lord of Change to dodge mortal wounds, suddenly he swaps the LoC with a squad of brimstones that are closer and you get blasted! Sometimes the player will put the changeling in your deployment zone and swap the changeling turn 1 with 10 pinks. Kill the 10 pinks and he has summoning points to put in 20 blues. Kill the blues and he has summoning points for 20 brimstones, and he's controlled an objective in your deployment zone for 2 turns or tied up a melee unit. 

 

What you can do: To negate the changeling, crowd out the front of your deployment zone. The changeling cannot be placed within 3" of enemy models, so you can completely prevent this with proper model placing in some missions. Killing the LoC stops the swaps, but that may be a tough challenge. However, the battalion gives 1 swap, plus one additional per 9 units, so if your opponent has 10 units in the battalion and you kill 2, you have permanently stopped reduced the swaps by one. This army plays objectives insanely well, so constantly be thinking about models around objectives! 

 

1

Murderhost:

Spoiler

 

What it does: Contains a Khorne hero and then 3-8 units of flesh hounds, blood crushers, skull cannons, and bloodletters to taste. Most players who run this will run a few 30man blobs of bloodletters and some flesh hounds. Before the game begins, every unit within 8" of the hero from this battalion gets to move 2d6". If the battalion contains 8 units beside the hero, then it gets to move make this move in EACH of it's hero phases as well. So if the BoK player has turn 1, then before the game it goes 2d6", and in the hero phase of turn 1 they all go 2d6" as well. Crazy fast! This is a hyper-aggressive army that can get onto all of your objectives turn 1 with good rolls. Players will also include a Blood Secrator for immunity to battleshock.

What you can do: The whole battalion's strength comes from the hero. If you have shooting or magic take that hero out asap. However, it also generates mortal wounds like crazy and can cleave through most units easily. Attempt to bubble wrap anything you can with chaff like skinks, brimstones, or other expendable units. Deploy back and try to deny turn 1 charges, or possibly put one unit of chaff in range on a flank so that one unit of bloodletters gets close to you and you can deal with the units at different times. But the essential part is taking out the hero and bubble-wrapping key units. If you don't kill the hero there's no running because the battalion will encircle you and win on objectives. You need to kill the hero and Bloodsecrator early to have a hope to move out and still score objectives

 

4

Vanguard Wing:

Spoiler

What it does: 3 units of Prosecutors take a unit of Liberators with them. Each turn the player can pick up the liberators if they are within 6" of a unit of prosecutors and redeploy them to be within 6" of a unit of prosecutors from the battalion. Congo-lining is possible, so you can have a single guy within 6" and the rest string out to attack you turn one or wrap around an objective. The unit gets buffed by heroes to be insanely damage-efficient and durable, and gets immunity to battleshock. This army runs around objectives and leaves dead bodies behind. NEW FAQ: Now models cannot be placed within 3", which means they can't snake through units and assassinate heroes and warmachines. 

What you can do: If at all possible, delete the prosecutors. Removing them takes away any teleporting.  Each unit is 6w, so if you can units that shoot well or get long charges, try and go for the prosecutors. Failing that, bubble wrap objectives to the best of your ability, ensuring that the player cannot put models behind your first rank through gaps. If you don't have access to mortal wounds or durable units of your own, this will be an extremely tough fight, but keep the objectives in mind and play those. Don't try and kill everything because you probably won't. 

But with the new FAQ, you can also protect your units easier. A single unit strung across your line(Plague monks, skinks, brimstones, anything cheap does the trick) will protect your other units. Note that their damage output hasn't gone down in the slightest: They will still destroy what they touch usually. But if you bubblewrap them out of the important targets, then kill the prosecutors turn 1-2, you should be in a pretty good position. Also note that if they charge they don't benefit from staunch defender, so are just a little bit squishier(not much at all, but hey, one less pip to the save helps when there's 60 wounds). But still, the main strategy should be wiping out the prosecutors first, then pinning down/killing the liberators. 

5
3

Kharadron Overlords Dropship:

Spoiler

What it does: 18 bubble-back dudes hitch a ride on a battleship with 20 arkonauts and some heroes. There's a third unit of battleline cowering in a corner. The battleship is a single drop, and can be placed into reserve and come in 9" away. They can give you turn 1 (Who cares if you kill 10 arkonauts but give them a chance for a double turn?), and then come in and shoot you with 20 arkonauts, the frigate, some heroes, and 18 bubblebacks. Chance for some nasty charges as well. This is a pure alpha-strike army that goes for a deathstroke turn 1. 

What you can do: Hide any crucial heroes if you can, and if you can't, then at least put them in terrain to give them a chance. Push your deployment as wide out as possible to put his guns further from your heroes and critical units as well. Once the alpha strike is down, you have a really good chance to counter-attack and get onto objectives. If you have units that redeploy or can stay off the board in any way, do so. This denies them targets and let's you outmanouvre them to objectives. Your whole goal is to survive the alpha-strike. After that sometimes the KO get wiped off that next turn. The wound rolls for most of their shots are 4+ with no rerolls or modifiers, so protect the things that hurt them most and wait out their turn 1.  Sidenote: The "Glorious Victory" field objective for the LVO mission pack says that if you kill 100% of the models on the board at the START OF THE GAME. So kill 10 models here and get 6pts!

7

Fyreslayers:(courtesy of @Andreas)

Spoiler

What it does: Two(maybe 3...) big units (30 Vulkites and 30 more Vulkites or probably even more scary 30 Aurics) will pop up 9 inches away from you and shoot you to pieces using the shooting rune and then probably charge. After that you will get stuck trying to kill 100+ duardins with rerollable save, ward save and immune to battleshock with what you have left after the fyreslayer shooting.

What you can do: Fyreslayers is an army built on synergy and support from their heroes. If you can you should try to kill the support heroes, primarily the general and the battlesmith. Be prepared for the tunneling alpha strike, place units/heroes you don’t want to get killed 16” inches from where the fyreslayers can pop up. Fyreslayers are also much better at holding objectives than taking objectives so try to get to the objectives first. Fyreslayers also have very large units that usually are very stretched out, try to attack the units from different directions to limit the number of models that can pile in. Also bear in mind that if they are tunneling, you can try to move/run your models to block out possible deep strike areas. If you have first turn and are able to, try to crowd out the board and force him to deepstrike into bad positions.

9

Thunderquake Starhost(courtesy of @PJetski and @Space Lizard)

Spoiler

What it does:
Dinosaur Deathstar. Overlaps multiple auras to reroll hits, wounds, and saves. Usually leaves points in reserve to summon the right units to counter what you have brought. At the beginning of the first combat phase, yours or your opponents you pick one of the abilities. SWIFT: Reroll charges and hits or SAVAGE:reroll wounds and saves. (Everyone uses savage because you already have abilties to reroll hits and charges) and once this is chosen it remains upon the creatures for the rest of the battle unless it is changed to the opposite option by the controlling player in a subsequent combat phase. If you are going to deny the buff to the seraphon player you will need to kill the engine with your magic / shooting in turn 1 and then the relic that lets you revive on a 3+ will most likely be on the engine allowing it to possibly escape death. So it will be very very hard to kill it off turn 1 before the combat phase. Think very carefully if you're going to try and do that or you risk wasting your entire first turn.

What you can do:
Don't split your damage. Focus it on single units until those units are dead. A Stegadon with 1 wound left is still very dangerous, since he can teleport away to heal up and keep shooting at full power, then move D6 in the hero phase and charge back in to combat.
Kill the Engine of the Gods as soon as possible. Be willing to sacrifice units to kill this monster, it is the core of the Thunderquake list. It can do a lot of mortal wounds, can summon units into play that can immediately move, and gives the rest of the units in the battalion rerollable wounds/saves. If he rolls triple6 (or 665 with Curse of Fates) with the engine then he gets double move and attack. This is brutal for units like Bastiladons that all of a sudden move 10" and shoot 2d6x2. Kill this thing...
If he has Reinforcement Points you should try to kill the Slann next to deny those points coming into play. But if the Engine is still alive he can summon through the engine, so killing the first is still your best bet even if he has summoning. 
If he summons an Astrolith Bearer you should try to pull his army in different directions so he is out of range of rerolling hit aura (kill it if you can, but there are too many other high priority targets).
Ignore the Bastiladon. You will waste too many dice trying to take it down. If you let the Bastiladon get on an objective then you have done something wrong. Try to bubble wrap the objectives and force it to waste turns slogging through them. If you have to shoot at one, make sure you kill it. No half measures with this list. 
Don't leave objectives open or he will teleport onto them(Same goes for any Seraphon).

11

Kunnin' Rukk

Spoiler

 

What it does: A Savage Big Boss leads 2-5 units of Savage Orruks. In each hero phase, the Big Boss can pick a unit of Savage Orruks within 10" to move, shoot, or pile in/attack. This can lead to a unit of 30 boyz shooting 90 shots in the hero phase, then another 90 in the shooting phase. With buffs from heroes, they can generate extra shots on 5s, reroll 1s, and be hitting on 4s. Their arrows will blot out the sun!

 

What you can do: First things first: Kill the Big Boss if at all possible. If you have any shooting, deep striking ambush units, artillery, or similar units, use them to try and snipe the Big Boss. Orruks are 2w apiece with a  save that can never drop to worse than 6+, so can be very tough, but their bravery is only 5, so focus on one unit to make battleshock punishing for them. Killing 11 drops the unit to 19, meaning they are bravery 6. They lose 5+d6 models. Ouch! Some other things to keep in mind: They get +2 bravery if they are near enemy units, so don't throw chaff next to them to tie them up if you can help it. You'll end up helping them quite a bit. They also have rend -1 against Monsters, so be aware that your Cabbage is just a large pincushion that will get dropped in one turn of shooting. Focus down their mobs, and kill the big boss. 

 

3

Sylvaneth(courtesy of @Rimio)

Spoiler

Drycha: She is a beast, and she is hard to counter. She has a 18" nuke she takes 10 dice and rolls them for every enemy unit in range. 6s are mortal wounds. She also rolls a dice in the Hero phase. If it is a 1-3 she will be re-rolling 1s on this ability, as well as doubling her number of attacks  with the main attack. On full wounds that means 12 attacks 4+ 3+ rend 1 2 damage. You will have to take her down as long as you still have 5 wounds heroes, as that is her main purpose. Once those guys are down, you might ignore her for better and more powerful targets. 

Sylvaneth Wildwoods: The way to counter them is to spread out your units so they can't summon any woods. they are fairly large and they have to come in 1" or 3" away from terrain and models. If you can kill the heroes summoning them do that as fast as possible. This means a Treelord ancient, any with Verdant Blessing and the Hero carrying the Acorn. If they do get on the board try to stick a unit right in the middle of one, this way the enemy won't be able to teleport into it. They have to be 9" away when they to one of them. 

Kurnoth Hunters: These guys are the main workhorse of the Sylventh army, the main source of damage they will be rerolling 4+ saves, 3+ if they are in cover. Hard to kill with normal units, they will grind you down  and then move on to the next unit. The bows won't be doing too much damage so unless you have decent rend or mortal wounds try not to lock up your units with them. The Swords/Scythes will be going after you tho. Try to get as much damage into them the turn they charged since they won't have the reroll. Vulnerable to mortal wounds.

Durthu: Put 3 wounds on him so his main swing will only do D6 damage instead of 6. He gets D3 extra attacks if he is within 3" of a Wildwood, so if at all possible keep your heroes 8" away from the Wyldwoods. It is a unit you might want to ignore as long as possible, and zone him out, he only moves 5" and has a 15" shot. 

Tree revenants: These guys while very annoying and agile are relatively weak in combat, and with only a 5+ save will die fast to any normal combat unit. Leave a solid unit (5 Liberators or equivalent unit) behind your squishy characters and they will be fine. 

The Sylvaneth are a fortress army. If you can disrupt that, they won't be able to do much. Try not to go into a clumped up pair of Sylvaneth, since most big guys have 2-3" reach on their attacks, and they will be able to swing over the heads of your other units. Try to pull them apart and pepper them with Mortal wounds.  Be wary of their movement: A good Sylvaneth player can run circles around you and pick off your key units, so try to block out those woods

6

Aetherstrike Force(courtesy of @PJetski)

Spoiler

What it Does:
With 9-12 Vanguard-Raptors and 10 Judicators this list attempts to shoot you off the table... and it WILL succeed unless you play the first two turns correctly. A properly played Aetherstrike is oppressively strong against melee armies and will build to counter shooting/deep strike armies with units like Protectors and Gryph Hounds. 
The Aetherstrike Battalion grants two abilities to the Stormcast player:
1. Shoot with one unit in the army in the hero phase (usually picking 9x Longstrikes) if the enemy unit is within 12" of Aetherwings or the Knight Azyros. This is easier to accomplish than it seems when you consider Lightning Chariot can teleport you to >9" of the enemy and Aetherwings can move 2d6" in the enemy charge phase.
2. If you kill any unit in the Battalion (Raptors, Aetherwings, Judicators, Azyros, Venator) then he can pick one unit in (usually 9x Longstrikes) to shoot at the destroying unit.
This means you will be facing 2 volleys of fire from 9x Longstrikes every turn, and a volley every time you kill a unit in the battalion. Brutal.

What  You Can Do:
This is a really hard matchup for most armies. The good news is that the Raptors are only 2 wounds each and have no defense against mortal wounds. The bad news is that the damage output from the Longstrikes is tremendous and he will do everything possible to keep them alive.
If you can kill the 9x Raptor unit in the first two turns then you will almost certainly win. However, if you have a pure melee army and/or short range spells with no way to teleport in range then you have almost certainly lost because the rest of his army is dedicated to stopping you from touching the Raptors.
To beat this list you need either significant amounts of long-ranged Mortal Wounds that don't roll To Hit, or ranged -1 Hit debuffs (preferably more than 1). You must be willing to sacrifice a significant portion of your army to kill the Raptors.
DO NOT let him get a possible double turn if you can help it. You will lose if he gets to shoot you 4 times in succession with the Raptors.
DO NOT try to just play objectives.  You will put yourself in bad positions and give him a shooting gallery of targets to choose from. You may score the first two turns but you'll be handing him the game for turns 3-5. Between Lightning Chariot and 12" flying heroes this list has enough movement to get where it needs to be by the end of the game. 
DO NOT deep strike a unit within 10" of the Gryph-Hound unless you are certain that you can widthstand the full shooting power of his army. The only thing I've seen capable of doing this was a 9x Stormfiend unit, but it only had 3 models left at the end of his movement phase.
Try to finish off units with Battleshock, since fleeing does not trigger the 2nd Battalion ability (this is difficult to do since he will often keep up Inspiring Presence)
Try to kill the Aetherwings while out of range or out of sight of the Longstrikes (difficult).

3

Lord Ordinator-buffed Artillery

Spoiler

What it Does:
The Lord Ordinator grants +1 to hit to <ORDER> warmachines within 6" of him, and his command ability can cause one to shoot twice. Add in the City allegiance that can possibly shoot in the hero phase, and an "Artillery Battalion" that's been hinted at, and you're looking at an insane gunline that deletes unit from a distance. Expect 3 Hellstorm Rocket Batteries probably, for a humble 9 shots that do d6 damage getting buffs. There could even be a Celestial Hurricanum in there as well, giving additional bonuses. The artillery will hit often and hard.

What  You Can Do:
Fortunately, this army places it's eggs in one proverbial basket so to speak. All of it's power, and the whole list design centers around, the artillery. Each piece has crew that, if killed, destroy the artillery. So if you have Rotigus, Nurgle's wheel-on-the-plague-filled-bus, Changehost, Drycha, or anything else that allows you to quickly snipe some models, hit the crew.  If he castles up so far away from you to where he's out of range, give him first turn. But the key is sniping the crew. Chameleon skinks, judicators in the heavens, anything that gives you a chance to hit the crew need to be sent there. Besides that? Well, whatever isn't hitting crew needs to hop onto objectives and try and score points up.

Fortunately, though the army will delete quite a few opponents, I don't think it will ever make top-tables due to hard counters out there like those mentioned above.

9
 
2

Plaguetouched Warband

Spoiler

What It Does

Is a battalion that allows Nurgle Mortals to have a -1 to hit in combat and have chances to do mortal wounds back in combat (only for multiples of 7 units). usually plays for objectives, using mobs of marauders to swamp the board, knights to be a fast tanky hammer, bk+ spume for teleporting, sayl for teleporting, chaos warriors for a mega-anvil... it is a flexible list with a ton of choices. almost every plaguetouched plays with harbinger of decay, that basically gives 5++ fnp to nurgle mortals. is an incredibly resilient list that can tank on an objective and survive any damage in order to earn points for the team. Knights can move insanely fast, run/charge, and do mortal wounds on every 5+ to hit. 

What You Should Do

If you have really good shooting you could try to take down the harbinger. He gives an effective 50% increase in hp to every unit within 7". Though I suggest you do this only if you have the power to do so as he is incredibly tanky for a 160 points hero. Targetting him with spells is risky because he ignores every spell on a 4+. 

Place your units on objective sooner than him. Hardly plaguetouched have the damage to kill a resilient unit until is too late. With mortal wounds on a 5+ to hit, they can clear out your units pretty quick. The key is bubble wrapping and feeding him speed bumps if you can't kill his units. DON'T THROW your hammers at the warriors/knights/marauders cause they will tank everything you send at them. or do it if you have a way to make them run at battleshock. If you can kill the mages then he has no control over the wheel and his powerful magic. Use that to your advantage since he can no longer modify the steps. If he plays sayl kill him as soon as possible. He is far too strong with teleporting and even at turn 5 can make you lose games. with a -1 to hit almost everything in nurgle hits like pillows.

 

 

Plague Drones:

Spoiler

What It Does:

A unit of Plague Drones(either 6  or 9) gets +1 attack, Blades of Putrefaction, and some other buffs and is able to run/charge thanks to nurgle trees. The unit can consistently wipe out just about any unit in the game through mortal wounds and standard damage. 

 

What You Should Do:

Bubble wrap is your friend. Remember that the unit has an extremely large footprint, so even though  it can fly it still can't end within 3" of enemy models. You can stagger your bubble out 6" apart from other units and he still won't be able to fit the bases in between your layers. One other that can REALLY help is to try and catch the unit from two opposite sides in melee, so that the middle models can't attack or pile in. Plague Drones are always in a broad front to try and maximize the number that get to attack, and you can exploit this by charging the sides of the unit. Something like

F=Friendly Unit

P=Plague Drone

 

FFFF-P-P-P-P-P-P-P-P-P-FFFFFF

 

The Plague Drones in the middle can't do anything, and while even one Plague Drone can through out alot of damage, it's not nearly as scary as the whole unit, and your screen should be able to hold them in place for a turn or two

 
 

 

 

 

 

Edited by JamesT
Adding FAQ for Vanguard Wing, added Lord Ordinator and Nurgle speed
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Fyreslayers:

What it does: Two big units (30 Vulkites and 30 more Vulkites or probably even more scary 30 Aurics) will pop up 9 inches away from you and shoot you to pieces using the shooting rune and then probably charge. After that you will get stuck trying to kill 100+ duardins with rerollable save, ward save and immune to battleshock with what you have left after the fyreslayer shooting.

What you can do: Fyreslayers is an army built on synergy and support from their heroes. If you can you should try to kill the support heroes, primarily the general and the battlesmith. Be prepared for the tunneling alpha strike, place units/heroes you don’t want to get killed 16” inches from where the fyreslayers can pop up. Fyreslayers are also much better at holding objectives than taking objectives so try to get to the objectives first. Fyreslayers also have very large units that usually are very stretched out, try to attack the units from different directions to limit the number of models that can pile in.

Edited by Andreas
typo
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Seraphon - Thunderquake Starhost tips

What it does:
Dinosaur Deathstar. Overlaps multiple auras to reroll hits, wounds, and saves. Usually leaves points in reserve to summon the right units to counter what you have brought.

What you can do:
Don't split your damage. Focus it on single units until those units are dead. A Stegadon with 1 wound left is still very dangerous, since he can teleport away to heal up and keep shooting at full power, then move D6 in the hero phase and charge back in to combat.
Kill the Engine of the Gods as soon as possible. Be willing to sacrifice units to kill this monster, it is the core of the Thunderquake list. It can do a lot of mortal wounds, can summon units into play that can immediately move, and gives the rest of the units in the battalion rerollable wounds/saves. If he rolls triple6 (or 665 with Curse of Fates) with the engine then he gets another turn and you will probably lose.
If he has Reinforcement Points you should try to kill the Slann next to deny those points coming into play.
If he summons an Astrolith Bearer you should try to pull his army in different directions so he is out of range of rerolling hit aura (kill it if you can, but there are too many other high priority targets).
Ignore the Bastiladon. You will waste too many dice trying to take it down. If you let the Bastiladon get on an objective then you have done something wrong.
Don't leave objectives open or he will teleport onto them.

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Good writeups! I'll be at the LVO and I'm worried about facing some of these, haha. I have had moderate success against KO and Fyreslayers, but haven't had a chance to test against Vanguard Wing or Changehost yet, so I can only plan so much. Can't wait to play, though!

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Superb initiative!!! Just what I needed to know as I'm not yet a super-aware player.

Could you please eventually add (by copy past) in the first post the posts of the other foromers? (so we can have all of them pag 1 post #1 )

 

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2 hours ago, PJetski said:

Seraphon - Thunderquake Starhost tips

What it does:
Dinosaur Deathstar. Overlaps multiple auras to reroll hits, wounds, and saves. Usually leaves points in reserve to summon the right units to counter what you have brought.

What you can do:
Don't split your damage. Focus it on single units until those units are dead. A Stegadon with 1 wound left is still very dangerous, since he can teleport away to heal up and keep shooting at full power, then move D6 in the hero phase and charge back in to combat.
Kill the Engine of the Gods as soon as possible. Be willing to sacrifice units to kill this monster, it is the core of the Thunderquake list. It can do a lot of mortal wounds, can summon units into play that can immediately move, and gives the rest of the units in the battalion rerollable wounds/saves. If he rolls triple6 (or 665 with Curse of Fates) with the engine then he gets another turn and you will probably lose.
If he has Reinforcement Points you should try to kill the Slann next to deny those points coming into play.
If he summons an Astrolith Bearer you should try to pull his army in different directions so he is out of range of rerolling hit aura (kill it if you can, but there are too many other high priority targets).
Ignore the Bastiladon. You will waste too many dice trying to take it down. If you let the Bastiladon get on an objective then you have done something wrong.
Don't leave objectives open or he will teleport onto them.

Need to Clarify/Correct something on here (Not to be rude just accurate)

The Thunderquake host does not require the Engine of the Gods for the buffs.  At the beginning of the first combat phase, yours or your opponents you pick one of the abilities. SWIFT: Reroll charges and hits or SAVAGE:reroll wounds and saves. (Everyone uses savage because you already have abilties to reroll hits and charges) and once this is chosen it remains upon the creatures for the rest of the battle unless it is changed to the opposite option by the controlling player in a subsequent combat phase. If you are going to deny the buff to the seraphon player you will need to kill the engine with your magic / shooting in turn 1 and then the relic that lets you revive on a 3+ will most likely be on the engine allowing it to possibly escape death. So it will be very very hard to kill it off turn 1 before the combat phase. Think very carefully if you're going to try and do that or you risk wasting your entire first turn.

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13 minutes ago, Space Lizard said:

Need to Clarify/Correct something on here (Not to be rude just accurate)

The Thunderquake host does not require the Engine of the Gods for the buffs.  At the beginning of the first combat phase, yours or your opponents you pick one of the abilities. SWIFT: Reroll charges and hits or SAVAGE:reroll wounds and saves. (Everyone uses savage because you already have abilties to reroll hits and charges) and once this is chosen it remains upon the creatures for the rest of the battle unless it is changed to the opposite option by the controlling player in a subsequent combat phase. If you are going to deny the buff to the seraphon player you will need to kill the engine with your magic / shooting in turn 1 and then the relic that lets you revive on a 3+ will most likely be on the engine allowing it to possibly escape death. So it will be very very hard to kill it off turn 1 before the combat phase. Think very carefully if you're going to try and do that or you risk wasting your entire first turn.

Bah. I meant: Doesn't require the Engine of the Gods to be alive to keep it's buffs. You need to kill it and get through it's revival relic in your magic / shooting phase. Once the combat phase comes it automatically kicks in their buff for the rest of the game.  

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Thunderquake bonuses are chosen at the beginning of *each* combat phase.

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Just now, PJetski said:

Thunderquake bonuses are chosen at the beginning of *each* combat phase.

Yes but if your opponent goes first they get the hero / shooting phase to attempt to kill the engine before it's buffs are put up.

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4 hours ago, GeneralZero said:

Superb initiative!!! Just what I needed to know as I'm not yet a super-aware player.

Could you please eventually add (by copy past) in the first post the posts of the other foromers? (so we can have all of them pag 1 post #1 )

 

Yep! I will try and compile all of the additional ones that people add into the original, and make the breakdowns spoilers so the first page is easier to navigate instead of scrolling through walls of text haha

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Chatted with a friend earlier. Shooting lists should be worried about new Nurgle. Plaguebearers were already good with their -2 to hit from shooting in big blobs, but now Lord of Blights can chuck the same debuff onto any unit. 

 

Hurts my list but good to see some counters for shooting! 

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Kunnin' Rukk

What it does: A Savage Big Boss leads 2-5 units of Savage Orruks. In each hero phase, the Big Boss can pick a unit of Savage Orruks within 10" to move, shoot, or pile in/attack. This can lead to a unit of 30 boyz shooting 90 shots in the hero phase, then another 90 in the shooting phase. With buffs from heroes, they can generate extra shots on 5s, reroll 1s, and be hitting on 4s. Their arrows will blot out the sun!

 

What you can do: First things first: Kill the Big Boss if at all possible. If you have any shooting, deep striking ambush units, artillery, or similar units, use them to try and snipe the Big Boss. Orruks are 2w apiece with a  save that can never drop to worse than 6+, so can be very tough, but their bravery is only 5, so focus on one unit to make battleshock punishing for them. Killing 11 drops the unit to 19, meaning they are bravery 6. They lose 5+d6 models. Ouch! Some other things to keep in mind: They get +2 bravery if they are near enemy units, so don't throw chaff next to them to tie them up if you can help it. They also have rend -1 against Monsters, so be aware that your Cabbage is just a large pincushion that will get dropped in one turn of shooting. Focus down their mobs, and kill the big boss. 

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5 hours ago, JamesT said:

Their arrows will blot out the sun!

Then we will roll dice in the shade! :)

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Doesn't Sylvaneth hit quite hard too? How are people dealing with Kurnoths, Spirits of Durthu and their movement shanenigans? In my local store they're having quite an impact...

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On 15-1-2018 at 2:52 AM, JamesT said:

Murderhost:

What it does: Contains a Khorne hero and then 3-8 units of flesh hounds, blood crushers, skull cannons, and bloodletters to taste. Most players who run this will run a few 30man blobs of bloodletters and some flesh hounds. Before the game begins, every unit within 8" of the hero from this battalion gets to move 2d6". If the battalion contains 8 units beside the hero, then it gets to move make this move in EACH of it's hero phases as well. So if the BoK player has turn 1, then before the game it goes 2d6", and in the hero phase of turn 1 they all go 2d6" as well. Crazy fast! This is a hyper-aggressive army that can get onto all of your objectives turn 1 with good rolls. Players will also include a Blood Secrator for immunity to battleshock.

What you can do: The whole battalion's strength comes from the hero. If you have shooting or magic take that hero out asap. However, it also generates mortal wounds like crazy and can cleave through most units easily. Attempt to bubble wrap anything you can with chaff like skinks, brimstones, or other expendable units. Deploy back and try to deny turn 1 charges, or possibly put one unit of chaff in range on a flank so that one unit of bloodletters gets close to you and you can deal with the units at different times. But the essential part is taking out the hero and bubble-wrapping key units.

 

Great write up!

Sidenotes: (which can be very relevant)
- Khorne Hero must be Bloodletter Hero. Which really matters because killing a random Khorne Hero doesn't stop the effect for example. 
- Bloodsecrator remains the lynchpin for every Khorne army. If you can thake it out through ranged attacks your wise to do so.
- Bubble-wrapping helps but offcourse even a single sacrificial model with a large base can do the trick in Age of Sigmar.

There is also Gore Pilgrims which can be used in conjunction with this. But I'll let the LVO players figure out what that does by itself :P 

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55 minutes ago, Killax said:

Great write up!

Sidenotes: (which can be very relevant)
- Khorne Hero must be Bloodletter Hero. Which really matters because killing a random Khorne Hero doesn't stop the effect for example. 
- Bloodsecrator remains the lynchpin for every Khorne army. If you can thake it out through ranged attacks your wise to do so.
- Bubble-wrapping helps but offcourse even a single sacrificial model with a large base can do the trick in Age of Sigmar.

There is also Gore Pilgrims which can be used in conjunction with this. But I'll let the LVO players figure out what that does by itself :P 

But any army with access to offensive ranged spells or shooting shouldn't have much problem killing a bloodletters hero right? As it's basically a herald or skulltaker?

Edited by The Traitor

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17 minutes ago, The Traitor said:

But any army with access to offensive ranged spells or shooting shouldn't have much problem killing a bloodletters hero right? As it's basically a herald or skulltaker?

Shooting can certainly remove it from the field. Spells are less likely to do it due to many unbind options being in Khorne. Including an Artefact that does it automatically and/or Blood Tithe points doing it.

Frankly speaking though I don't think you'll see tons of full Battalion armies as the Battalion push is just a part of the set up that can reach really far with the help of a Wrath of Khorne Bloodthirster and Bloodstoker too. 

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15 hours ago, The Traitor said:

Doesn't Sylvaneth hit quite hard too? How are people dealing with Kurnoths, Spirits of Durthu and their movement shanenigans? In my local store they're having quite an impact...

The Sylvaneth is still a solid list, even after the point increase to the Kurnoth Hunters, they are a very solid unit, especially defensively.  Durthu is also a beast. I can't sat there's a specific list that has risen to prominence like last years Gnarlroot. That was pointed out of the meta, as usually 250 points gives a better return of investment, if you are getting a unit of hunters. I will go into every unit that's likely you're going to see there. 

Drycha: She is a beast, and she is hard to counter. She has a 18" nuke she takes 10 dice and rolls them for every enemy unit in range. 6s are mortal wounds. She also rolls a dice in the Hero phase. If it is a 1-3 she will be re-rolling 1s on this ability, as well as doubling her number of attacks  with the main attack. On full wounds that means 12 attacks 4+ 3+ rend 1 2 damage. You will have to take her down as long as you still have 5 wounds heroes, as that is her main purpose. Once those guys are down, you might ignore her for better and more powerful targets. 

Sylvaneth Wildwoods: The way to counter them is to spread out your units so they can't summon any woods. they are fairly large and they have to come in 1" or 3" away from terrain and models. If you can kill the heroes summoning them do that as fast as possible. This means a Treelord ancient, any with Verdant Blessing and the Hero carrying the Acorn. If they do get on the board try to stick a unit right in the middle of one, this way the enemy won't be able to teleport into it. They have to be 9" away when they to one of them. 

Kurnoth Hunters: These guys are the main workhorse of the Sylventh army, the main source of damage they will be rerolling 4+ saves, 3+ if they are in cover. Hard to kill with normal units, they will grind you down  and then move on to the next unit. The bows won't be doing too much damage so unless you have decent rend or mortal wounds try not to lock up your units with them. The Swords/Scythes will be going after you tho. Try to get as much damage into them the turn they charged since they won't have the reroll. Vulnerable to mortal wounds.

Durthu: Put 3 wounds on him so his main swing will only do D6 damage instead of 6. He gets D3 extra attacks if he is within 3" of a Wildwood, so if at all possible keep your heroes 8" away from the Wyldwoods. It is a unit you might want to ignore as long as possible, and zone him out, he only moves 5" and has a 15" shot. 

Tree revenants: These guys while very annoying and agile are relatively weak in combat, and with only a 5+ save will die fast to any normal combat unit. Leave a solid unit (5 Liberators or equivalent unit) behind your squishy characters and they will be fine. 

The Sylvaneth are a fortress army. If you can disrupt that, they won't be able to do much. Try not to go into a clumped up pair of Sylvaneth, since most big guys have 2-3" reach on their attacks, and they will be able to swing over the heads of your other units. Try to pull them apart and pepper them with Mortal wounds.  

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Thanks for this post. I am going to LVO and its going to be my first tournament ever. I live in an area where AOS is not very popular so its really hard to get a game, let alone a competitive game. I am #1 just hoping to have lots of fun, but #2 trying to win at least one game haha. Looking forward to seeing everyone there! 

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such a helpful thread! im going for the first time, and it will also be my first big tournament, and first time im actually travelling for a tournament. i dont plan to build an optimal list because i wanna play what i think is fun, but i really am glad to have a resource like this that can bring me up to speed. I feel like there should be a pinned "top meta" post similar to this one!

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Stormcast Aetherstrike Force:

I have a lot of experience with this list, going 12-0 (all major victories) so far in tournaments. This is general advice, for more specific matchups you can PM me.

What it Does:
With 9-12 Vanguard-Raptors and 10 Judicators this list attempts to shoot you off the table... and it WILL succeed unless you play the first two turns correctly. A properly played Aetherstrike is oppressively strong against melee armies and will build to counter shooting/deep strike armies with units like Protectors and Gryph Hounds. 
The Aetherstrike Battalion grants two abilities to the Stormcast player:
1. Shoot with one unit in the army in the hero phase (usually picking 9x Longstrikes) if the enemy unit is within 12" of Aetherwings or the Knight Azyros. This is easier to accomplish than it seems when you consider Lightning Chariot can teleport you to >9" of the enemy and Aetherwings can move 2d6" in the enemy charge phase.
2. If you kill any unit in the Battalion (Raptors, Aetherwings, Judicators, Azyros, Venator) then he can pick one unit in (usually 9x Longstrikes) to shoot at the destroying unit.
This means you will be facing 2 volleys of fire from 9x Longstrikes every turn, and a volley every time you kill a unit in the battalion. Brutal.

What  You Can Do:
This is a really hard matchup for most armies. The good news is that the Raptors are only 2 wounds each and have no defense against mortal wounds. The bad news is that the damage output from the Longstrikes is tremendous and he will do everything possible to keep them alive.
If you can kill the 9x Raptor unit in the first two turns then you will almost certainly win. However, if you have a pure melee army and/or short range spells with no way to teleport in range then you have almost certainly lost because the rest of his army is dedicated to stopping you from touching the Raptors.
To beat this list you need either significant amounts of long-ranged Mortal Wounds that don't roll To Hit, or ranged -1 Hit debuffs (preferably more than 1). You must be willing to sacrifice a significant portion of your army to kill the Raptors.
DO NOT let him get a possible double turn if you can help it. You will lose if he gets to shoot you 4 times in succession with the Raptors.
DO NOT try to just play objectives.  You will put yourself in bad positions and give him a shooting gallery of targets to choose from. You may score the first two turns but you'll be handing him the game for turns 3-5. Between Lightning Chariot and 12" flying heroes this list has enough movement to get where it needs to be by the end of the game. 
DO NOT deep strike a unit within 10" of the Gryph-Hound unless you are certain that you can widthstand the full shooting power of his army. The only thing I've seen capable of doing this was a 9x Stormfiend unit, but it only had 3 models left at the end of his movement phase.
Try to finish off units with Battleshock, since fleeing does not trigger the 2nd Battalion ability (this is difficult to do since he will often keep up Inspiring Presence)
Try to kill the Aetherwings while out of range or out of sight of the Longstrikes (difficult).

Edited by PJetski
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"Congo-lining is possible, so you can have a single guy within 6" and the rest string out to attack you turn one or wrap around an objective. This can be done to place the models base-to-base with enemy models."

VANGUARD WING (Stormstreak):
Instead of moving in the movement phase ... set up anywhere within 5" of a unit of prosecutors. 

CORE RULES
When moving a model in the movement phase, you may not move within 3" of enemy models.

Its a very long stretch to assume that using the battalion to do a special move in the movement phase does not count as a move in the movement phase. Its not a big deal - its not like the Libs are likely to fail a 3" charge ... but they have to stay out of 3" or enemy models.

Fyreslayers have a whole list of things they can do. Generally the core of the army is built around 30 man units of Berzerkers with 5+/5++/4+++ and absorbing most everything you throw at them. The general idea of killing chars is good but most armies are not going to get the chance while there is 100+ models on 32mm bases covering most of the board. The general idea is to kill the general who is typically giving them immunity to battleshock. If they take battleshock, maybe there is hope. There are shooty hearthguard and X heroes allowing X units to pop out at 9", they have alternating runes which do crazy things. They are charging across the board, piling in super long distances, conga lining to keep all the buffs going at once. The overall thing here is they needed a buff in the GH2017, instead they got triple-buffed and their power level is off the charts. If you have a shooting army you can take out the key chars and pray you get ahead of it. If you have a melee heavy army .. well I'd grab a couple beers for this game, you're gonna need them. 

Edited by WoollyMammoth

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2 minutes ago, WoollyMammoth said:

"Congo-lining is possible, so you can have a single guy within 6" and the rest string out to attack you turn one or wrap around an objective. This can be done to place the models base-to-base with enemy models."

VANGUARD WING (Stormstreak):
Instead of moving in the movement phase ... set up anywhere within 5" of a unit of prosecutors. 

CORE RULES
When moving a model in the movement phase, you may not move within 3" of enemy models.

Its a very long stretch to assume that using the battalion to do a special move in the movement phase does not count as a move in the movement phase. Its not a big deal - its not like the Libs are likely to fail a 3" charge ... but they have to stay out of 3" or enemy models.

Kharadron Overlords have a whole list of things they can do. Generally the core of the army is built around 30 man units of Berzerkers with 5+/5++/4+++ and absorbing most everything you throw at them. The general idea of killing chars is good but most armies are not going to get the chance while there is 100+ models on 32mm bases covering most of the board. The general idea is to kill the general who is typically giving them immunity to battleshock. If they take battleshock, maybe there is hope. There are shooty hearthguard and X heroes allowing X units to pop out at 9", they have alternating runes which do crazy things. They are charging across the board, piling in super long distances, conga lining to keep all the buffs going at once. The overall thing here is they needed a buff in the GH2017, instead they got triple-buffed and their power level is off the charts. If you have a shooting army you can take out the key chars and pray you get ahead of it. If you have a melee heavy army .. well I'd grab a couple beers for this game, you're gonna need them. 

I believe you meant to say Fyreslayers, not Kharadron Overlords unless I am terribly mistaken.

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