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AoS 2 - Nighthaunt Discussion

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@Docthe3rd

So those lists look fairly even, the liberators are the weak point of the stormcast list. Don't sleep on the strength of the sequitor, those guys will tear through nighthaunt if you equip the max number of models with great maces, plus they become battleline if astreia is general. Castigators as well aren't great but benefit from 6s  to hit becoming D3 hits against nighthaunt. 

Your original list seems well balanced to me, glaivewraith stalkers are weak but so are liberators so it evens out. 

 

Edited by Mattrulesok

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So with the rise of the shooting meta (Tzeentch, KO, LRL and to a degree Seraphon) I'm considering dusting off my old Legion of Grief army but running them as Nighthaunt.

The ability to null deploy troops at the start can do a lot to protect them from nasty arrows and bullets.

I have never played Nighthaunt specifically, so could anyone enlighten me as to which lists are strong at the moment?

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Seeing a lot of people put NH in the lower tier currently, what's the reason? What's the major drawback that the army has?

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57 minutes ago, frostfire said:

Seeing a lot of people put NH in the lower tier currently, what's the reason? What's the major drawback that the army has?

I am just starting NH but as an outside observer here are my thoughts after reading up on the army over the last few days. 

The current meta is high magic and high shooting. We are seeing Tzeentch, Hallowheart, and Seraphon consistently topping charts. 

Nighthaunt doesnt have much access to casting bonuses and we decent magic defense. So magic armies are likely to just dominate the phase while shutting down ours.

On top of that we are pretty much dead in the water in the shooting phase. Outside of making deepstrike charges, our units and characters are just going to get shot off before they can do their jobs.

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Add to that that our most dangerous ability Wave of Terror is so very luckdepended that its near hopeless to base any strategy on it. Just some of the many reasons as to why we went from The Ring to Casper the friendly ghost.

Basically it leads down to the fact that our tome is from a time before the powercreep went bananas (I think that took off when the FEC tome was released).

But try flipping back through these pages every 2-3 page we meet here to cry about how incredibilly hard it is to win with Nighthaunt. 
Love my ghost to eh... death, but so far they are meant for narrative, WHQ and just looking damn nice on my dusty shelves😕

P.S I actually managed to get a single win against my local Seraphon buddy. But that was after he wipped me off the table for three games straight and he decided to build an army he knew I would be strong against.

Despite that he also made a bunch of serious mistakes, accidentially picked the wrong hero, missed some spells and stuff. And yet I only barely took him. Keep in mind that I use to have about 50-60% Wins against this guy before he got his new tome.

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4 hours ago, Liquidsteel said:

could anyone enlighten me as to which lists are strong at the moment?

Well... "strong" is perhaps a bit of an overstatement when it comes to Nighthaunt (NH) these days. As you righteously pointed out, range is king in the current meta (in the form of either shooting or magic) and NH have very weak magic and zero shooting worth its price (you don't bring Chainghasts for their shooting). We are pretty pathetic in melee as well, with the "Etheral Tax" (i.e. the points you pay for your models all having an ethereal save, which doesn't win you games, trust me, not against the nonsense out there) being a huge hinderance still. A few of the  most competitive builds (which fare pretty bad against almost everything these days, but hey...) are based around the following strengths:

- Movement shenanigans. Grab a Dreadblade Harrow as your general to leverage the Phantasmal Discorporation + Spectral Summons combo (neat, but the Dreadblade can be easily sniped), make the most out of From the Underworld they come - technically, using multiple small units (MSU) so as to maximise the chance of Wave of Terror (but building on this alone is silly and small NH units lack the punch and die immediately), choose fast units only (i.e. Hexwraiths and Grimghast Reapers as opposed to Chainrasps)

- Big blobs of relatively though units. 6, 9 or even 12 Spirit Hosts are nasty things to deal with (especially if the above mentioned Dreadblade Harrow as a general as the Ruler of the Spirit Hosts command trait). Blocks of 30 Reapers are still great. Blocks of 40 Chainrasps are also great, particularly if leveraging the Chainguard battalion. Problem is, our healing is nothing compared to Legion of Nagash and we can't bring back whole units either, so...

- Trying to go for some actual damage. Lady Olynder, the Morngul, the Grimghast Reapers and the Bladegheists Revenants are the "heavy" (not really) hitters you have. With some support they can be ok, but most factions out-power you no matter what - and, for half the points you pay, as you need a bunch of support heroes to generate some damage. Heroes that have 5-7 wounds and who give "wholly within" auras/bubbles, which at this stage is plainly idiotic, really. The Black Coach is not really a heavy hitter but it's now very cheap - with that amount of wound and the buffs, I think it's a staple now (if only I could be bothered to buy one, let alone paint it...)

Other people may have additional suggestions, but you'll find that the mood is overall rather grim when talking about NH at the moment - and I count myself into the circle of the optimists. 

4 hours ago, frostfire said:

Seeing a lot of people put NH in the lower tier currently, what's the reason? What's the major drawback that the army has?

Where to start? To be fair, the last 2-4 pages of this very thread sum it up nicely. @Landohammerand @Greasygeek are both spot on. To me, the most frustrating thing is the lack of damage across the board and the sub-optimal healing potential compared to Legions of Nagash. I am favouring Soulblight these days, even for friendly games - not because they are more competitive (they have their own problems) but at least some units can kill something. I went through the "let's hone my movement finesse" phase... it made me a better player overall, I think, but the NH mechanics are so out to date that it is very painful to try and play them as they should be played. Which is to say, making the most out of their movement, playing the objectives games, getting tabled turn 4 (perhaps 5) hoping you have managed to secure a hefty enough lead on points. The truth is, movement used to be very good - when AoS was mostly about melee. Now, movement is still important of course, but there are many more ways to counteract it and a number of stupid board-wide threats that movement will do nothing to mitigate. Sure, you can start with half your army off the board... but trust me, it's not that much.

We are not in a good spot. NH are excellent when playing to have fun, they really are. If you are thinking tournaments... either you are a very, very good player who has mastered movement to the nanometer or you are probably better off with, say, FEC.

Hope this helps - I hate to sound that negative, but it is what it is. Tournament-wise I'm going 100% Legion of Blood this year - and I'm not even feeling guilty in looking my two big boxes of beautiful ghosts (ok, maybe a little).

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Legion of Grief is also a valid option, and I believe it is still playable. It gives access to much stronger recursion abilities and CP unit buy back from gravesites. 

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I still think "chapter" bonuses would go a long way to tiding us over to a new book.  Like literally every faction thats got a book lately has recieved, AoS & 40K included.

Edited by Neck-Romantic
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Sylvaneth is my main and it seems to be a kind of cousin army to NH. Mainly being a melee focused D-tier army with great models that focuses on teleport and healing. So maybe we can look to them for a kind of example on what we can expect from a codex refresh. 

Though it didnt exactly put Sylvaneth on top it did provide some subfaction abilities that were pretty strong and did not come with any point increase baggage. 

It did lock your artefact and command traits but in some cases the locked artefacts were better than the basic ones anyway. 

I hope that NH (and maybe even Deepkin) gets the same codex treatment soon, even if they dont get any models. We shouldnt have such old codexes with 3 brand new armies being launched so recently. (OBR, LRL, & SoB)

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On 9/7/2020 at 9:54 AM, frostfire said:

Seeing a lot of people put NH in the lower tier currently, what's the reason? What's the major drawback that the army has?

 NH suffer from the same fate as the Stormcast atm, ie, an outdated tome that was powercreeped into oblivion by the newer books. Naturally, these are the two factions I play at the moment. XD

GW needs to update both of these quite badly.

Edited by LordPrometheus
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18 hours ago, LordPrometheus said:

 NH suffer from the same fate as the Stormcast atm, ie, an outdated tome that was powercreeped into oblivion by the newer books. Naturally, these are the two factions I play at the moment. XD

GW needs to update both of these quite badly.

I've just bought into Stormcast so can feel your pain!

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On 9/4/2020 at 3:30 PM, Docthe3rd said:

Hey everyone,

So I have a slightly odd request that I'm hoping you all can help me with. I don't normally play anything Death, so I'm a bit at a loss for what to do. First, some background: I (during quarantine) taught my 8 year old nephew how to play, and he put together a 1000 point stormcast army as part of a birthday/good behavior gift from my wife and I. I, in keeping with the "rules" instilled by said 8 year old, have to put together a 1000 point Nighthaunt army (we learned using Storm Strike) that I would like to be roughly balanced with the one he has. The rules are as follows:

1) My general has to be Reikenor

2) It has to be balanced against this list. Unfortunately, the list can't be changed, as they're the ones he wanted (with his weapon choices). 

Astreia Solbright

Knight-Incantor

2 @ 5x Liberators w 2 swords

2 @ 3x Castigators

2 @ 5x Sequitors with maces and grandmaces

A Celestar Ballista

This is the main "rule" I'm having trouble with... I'm bad at building armies at the best of times, and especially so when I need to balance one in a faction I don't normally play against what a kid who just picked models he liked. Can you guys help? I came up with a rough list below (using the Soul Wars box as a starter), but I'm not sure how it would compare to my nephew's...

Reikenor the Grimhailer

Knight of Shrouds

Guardian of Souls

20x Chainrasp Horde

10x Grimghast Reapers

4x Glaivewraith Stalkers

2 @ 4x Myrmourn Banshees

 

Any help would be appreciated, and he'll surely appreciate not getting his head kicked in every game (or winning too easily, as he's as that age where he thinks everyone's letting him win)

 

 

 

To make fluffy lists, take less than optimal units. For us that's glaivewraiths, spirit hosts and harridans. 

So I'd personally try something like this:

- Reikenor 

- Knight of Shrouds (on ft) 

- Guardian of Souls

- 10 x chainrasps (battleline) 

- 6 x spirit hosts (battleline) 

- 8 x glaivewraiths

- 10 x harridans 

970pts - you can add an endless spell, or just be a little bit under and go for a triumph or be a bit under and leave it. 

The list will give your boy a variety of different units to deal with, yet none are massively overpowered, so if they get into combat there should be a few rounds of back and forth combat. 

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Hey ghost friends.

I have adapted my most winningest list into two post-Dolorous Guard flavors. I haven't played much since the FAQ to really know which performs better, but they both have their pros and cons. Give each a try. I would love to know which ends up working better against what opponents.

 

General Pros

  • Everything other than the Black Coach is either a Leader or Battleline. So, yeah, maybe we can squeeze out a few more points on those battleplans that give role bonuses.
  • Both lists come in less than 2,000 if you don't make any alterations, which may net you a Triumph. /shrug

General Cons:

  • With the loss of Dolorous Guard we lose some firepower with the Hexraiths. That extra attack on the charge adds up when you're swinging for MWs.
  • Worse, thanks to point changes and needing some extra bodies for the other battalion choices, we also lose the extra CP the original list offered.
  • And also lose the Endless Spell. To get either of these back you'll have to sacrifice some wounds on the table.

 

 Mortal Reign: Deathriders

Spoiler

Allegiance: Nighthaunt

Leaders
Dreadblade Harrow (90)
Guardian of Souls with Nightmare Lantern (130)
- Lore of the Underworlds: Shademist
- Infernal Lantern (Artefact): Beacon of Nagashizzar
Lady Olynder, Mortarch of Grief (200)
- Lore of the Underworlds: Soul Cage
Reikenor the Grimhailer (160)
- Lore of the Underworlds: Lifestealer
Spirit Torment (120)
- General
- Command Trait: Ruler of the Spirit Hosts
- Artefact: Pendant of the Fell Wind

Battleline
10 x Chainrasp Horde (80)
30 x Chainrasp Horde (240)
5 x Hexwraiths (130)
5 x Hexwraiths (130)
9 x Spirit Hosts (360)

Behemoths
Black Coach (220)

Battalions
Deathriders (130)

Total: 1990 / 2000
Extra Command Points: 1
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 128

Mortal Reign: Deathriders Pros

  • Keeping the Hexwraiths despite the Attacks loss means we're still staying true to the theme and power of the original Mortal Reign list, which was its ability to generate all the MWs needed to take down any enemy type.
  • Make up for the Attacks loss by scoring WoT on a 9.
  • Black Coach also gets WoT on a 9, and both this and the Hexwraiths also get +1 to the roll (still need a nat 9 for WoT) so you can get into combat early. Might be a viable strat against high-ranged enemies.

Mortal Reign: Deathriders Cons

  • Out of all the units that could use WoT on a 9, Hexwraiths and the Coach get it.
  • Not really the units you want in combat right away without support, and they will for sure leave support behind if you're not planning ahead.
  • Point tax! Grab that Dreadblade Harrow, but since the point of the list is a fast murderhobo blob of Spirit Hosts he's not going to be your general. Early cap potential, Deathless save bearer, throw-away hero that your enemy may think is important, but all worth less than a 50 point CP.

 

 Mortal Reign: Chainguard

Spoiler

Allegiance: Nighthaunt

Leaders
Guardian of Souls with Nightmare Lantern (130)
- Lore of the Underworlds: Shademist
- Infernal Lantern (Artefact): Beacon of Nagashizzar
Lady Olynder, Mortarch of Grief (200)
- Lore of the Underworlds: Soul Cage
Reikenor the Grimhailer (160)
- Lore of the Underworlds: Lifestealer
Spirit Torment (120)
- General
- Command Trait: Ruler of the Spirit Hosts
- Artefact: Pendant of the Fell Wind

Battleline
20 x Chainrasp Horde (160)
20 x Chainrasp Horde (160)
9 x Spirit Hosts (360)
20 x Grimghast Reapers (320)

Behemoths
Black Coach (220)

Battalions
Chainguard (120)

Endless Spells / Terrain / CPs
Extra Command Point (50)

Total: 2000 / 2000
Extra Command Points: 2
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 123

Mortal Reign: Chainguard Pros

  • Guardian of Souls and Chainrasps are a classic combo, and provided you can get your Spectral Lures off you can generally keep them around. If you can spend a turn casting on Reapers instead, your damage output should remain high.
  • Even if all you do is get them close to a ranged enemy to pose as a threat, those wounds will be a round to chew through at least.
  • Reapers and Reikenor are a very nice pair to take down hoards or to double-line up against anything else. With their 2" range you can have Reik behind a screen of Reapers and still have most of them swinging.
  • This list has an extra CP.

Mortal Reign: Chainguard Cons

  • Reapers do MWs in a convoluted way, and aren't reliable. The extra Chainrasps also don't do mortals. Sorts of deflates their damage potential against high-save targets or anyone with a save-after-save. Be prepared to think on your feet and throw these against enemies just to buy time, or use them for objective camping.
  • The entirety of your Chainrasps combat- or objective-holding potential comes down to a GoS's 6-CV spell. Be sure to try to exhaust your opponent's unbinds first. In the best case scenario Spectral Lure can be your 4th spell, but unless they think Wraithstorm/Lifestealer, Soulcage, Grief-stricken, or Shademist to be spells worth fizzling out, you likely won't exhaust the unbinds.
  • To fit the Reapers the Chainrasps have been reduced to 20 apiece. Now they will play a different role than simply Olynder's screen and an immortal objective contestor. Who's to say if that's a good idea?
Edited by EnixLHQ
Chainguard fix

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Now that I have Indomitus Necrons to paint Im suddenly seized with the urge to kitbash a Black Coach from Mortis Engine cavalry, some black knight/hexwraith bits, and spare nighthaunt ghosts...

All while my Eidolon/Kurdoss kitbash stares at me in his unfinished splendour

Edited by Neck-Romantic

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32 minutes ago, Neck-Romantic said:

Now that I have Indomitus Necrons to paint Im suddenly seized with the urge to kitbash a Black Coach from Mortis Engine cavalry, some black knight/hexwraith bits, and spare nighthaunt ghosts...

All while my Eidolon/Kurdoss kitbash stares at me in his unfinished splendour

That would be awesome but the Black Coach is probably one of the coolest models in the game. So would be a shame to not use it! 

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@EnixLHQ

I am also mourning the loss of Dolorous Guard. Deathriders is definitely a viable alternative but i prefer units of 10 hexwraith to capitalize on the battallion ability and make them a bit more of a threat. 

Most opponents arent going to worry too much about 5 hexwraiths, but 10 can be a problem if ignored. Especially if you roll a 9 and/or manage to get some flyovers.  

My newbie plan is to fling units of hexwraiths at opponents and buff them with a Knight of Shrouds on steed if they make the charge. The +1 attack also affects the horses so that becomes 31 hex attacks and 30 horse attacks. Not bad for 260pts! 

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7 hours ago, SleeperAgent said:

Chainguard needs each Chainrasp Horde to be 20 models minimum.

Good catch. Fixed. Well, kinda. Updated the counts which really hurts the Chainguard overall. I think it makes Deathriders the better option.

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I think not running dreadblade harrow as the general for huge movement is a big mistake. I can't imagine a list where I wouldn't want the ability to command point deepstrike any unit in my army. Backline not threatened this game? 40 chainrasps just appeared outside of 9 of your opponent. I've won quite a few games off my opponent not realizing that I am a 9 inch charge away from having more models on their backfield objective than they have. 

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When the list is built around that mechanic, I agree. It's a lot of fun to teleport around and pull units along for the ride.

Mortal Reign is a different strategy, and in terms of a win ratio greatly beats out any spirit-taxi list I've made. It beats out any other kind of list I've made. At least it did prior to losing Dolorous Guard.

The point of the Mortal Reign list is to make a murderball of Spirit Hosts and the Spirit Torment general with Ruler of the Spirit Host command trait and Pendant of the Fell Wind. 9 SHs re-rolling 1s in every phase they'd make an attack (good in WoT and both combat phases) to fish for MWs, bringing D3 bases back with Ruler, and spot healing itself or a damaged SH base every battleshock, all moving at 9". You can Underworlds the whole lot, or start with them on the board, but either way once they are chasing an enemy they're going to kill them despite most protections. Mind your ST positioning within that group and he'll keep the ball alive.

Yes, objectives are the name of the game, but if you can't take the ones your opponent's taken or defend the ones you have you'll still lose. And against a meta of magic and ranged you want a threat that is too large to ignore and to focus on rather than your objective takers.

Everything else in the list is already fast enough to be elsewhere on the board you need. Even more so if you Underworlds them. The Dreadblade is just a tax for keeping Hexwraiths in the list and still scoring a battalion for the extra CP and artefact. A teleporting hero that you don't need is great for providing coverage or quick-caps without risking your win condition.

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8 hours ago, EnixLHQ said:

Good catch. Fixed. Well, kinda. Updated the counts which really hurts the Chainguard overall. I think it makes Deathriders the better option.

I definitely think Deathriders is the best options. Ironically with all our points drops, you could do two Deathriders battalions. No idea how competitive it would be but it looks fun.

 

Allegiance: Nighthaunt

Leaders
Spirit Torment (120)
- General
- Command Trait: Ruler of the Spirit Hosts
- Artefact: Pendant of the Fell Wind
Dreadblade Harrow (90)
- Artefact: Slitter
Dreadblade Harrow (90)
- Artefact: Midnight Tome - Soul Cage
Lady Olynder, Mortarch of Grief (200)
- Lore of the Underworlds: Shademist

Battleline
10 x Hexwraiths (260)
5 x Hexwraiths (130)
10 x Hexwraiths (260)
5 x Hexwraiths (130)

Behemoths
Black Coach (220)
Black Coach (220)

Battalions
Deathriders (130)
Deathriders (130)

Total: 1980 / 2000
Extra Command Points: 2
Allies: 0 / 400
Wounds: 106

 
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I ran double deathriders before the points drops. I also made it to the third round in the AoS Coach TTS tourny with it defeating Hallowheart and OBR and only losing to Lord Kroak and teleporting salamander spam.

My list was a three drop which let me always go first.

Allegiance: Nighthaunt

Leaders
Mounted Knight of Shrouds
- Artefact: Midnight Tome - Soul Cage
Dreadblade Harrow
- General
- Artefact: Pendant of the Fell Wind
- Ruler of the Spirit Hosts 
Dreadblade Harrow
- Artefact: Sword of Secrets (Old Ulgu Artifact)

Battleline
10 x Hexwraiths
5 x Hexwraiths
10 x Hexwraiths
5 x Hexwraiths

Behemoths
Black Coach
Black Coach

Battalions
Deathriders
Deathriders

Extra Command Points: 2

I have since changed the list after the points drops removing the Mounted Knight of Shrouds because I found I never had CP for his command ability since I used them all for charge rerolls, and replacing him with Reikenor the GrimHailer and a Chronomantic Cogs.  +3 to your charge is really nice.  I also had to remove the Sword of Secrets after the realm artifacts were retconned. I was also able to add a molevolent mealstrom and another Dreadblade Harrow.

With this list you control the battle field and where and when you engage, but the Hexwraiths can hit like pillows sometimes.  The way I beat OBR for instance, was just tying them up in their own deployment zone with a turn 1 sweeping charge and sticking around long enough to rack up a massive objective lead.  Teleporting dreadblades really let you be where you need to and even can pop in to assassinate wizards and the like mid-late game.  In my game against Hallowheart, a dreadblade was able to slip a charge between screens and assassinate the Lord Incantor preventing the everblaze comet from ever being cast.

My coaches almost always can run and charge also on first turn, but that is a bit iffy based on their power up dice. I was using only the +3" from the Pendant and I could almost always cross the no mans land on turn 1.  Now that I added cogs, my deathriders are stupid fast.  Don't forget Hexwraiths can do Mortal Wounds in the movement phase, and with the Wave of Terror can do damage in the charge phase. Super important because a lot of special abilities trigger in the combat phase. For instance OBR have various gimmicks that trigger in the combat phase that lets them improve their saves etc.  Damaging them in the movement and charge phase circumvents those defenses.
Edited by Nevar
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