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MagisterCrow

Where, oh where to begin...

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Hello all! New to the forum and to the game and somewhat new to the hobby (dabbled in Warmachine and 40k), and am looking to get into the Death because...well, in every game I’ve ever played the first step for me is “look if there is a way to play necromancer effectively.”

The thing is, I want to do it all. Nighthaunt interests me mostly because I looooooove the way they look.  Reikenor can steal my soul any day. That said, I’m also a huge fan of drowning my opponents in skeleton hordes while my heavy hitters smash into their flanks. I also (eventually, waaaaay down the line) want to work Nagash in...did I mention I GM a lot of RPGs?

So...any advice on how to get started? I’m a blank page, so I’m open to any suggestions. I’m also not in a rush since I’m in the process of moving and won’t be dropping purchases in the near future.

Thanks in advance!

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You could go for nighthaunt and drown your enemies in chainrasp hordes, the spooks version of skeletons. Backed up with some supporting heros you can bring them back pretty fast. For hammer you could use bladeghast revenants. Including Nagash into this is easy enough, all nighthaunt models from the Soul Wars set are legal in LoN, so throw in the chainrasp and some support heros along with Nagash, maybe top off with a necromancer. 

Edited by KoalaSnok
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You've broadly got two options. 

You could go full on Nighthaunt, so can use Reikenor as your general and fill it full of ghosts (as @KoalaSnok says, loads of Chainrasp), bladegheist, lots of heroes for buffs etc.  You've got Spririt Torments and Guardian of Souls to replenish slain models from units.

Or you could go for one of the Legions of Nagash allegiances.  Fill it full of skeletons, supporting ghosts like grimghast reapers, Necromancers.  You'll gain gravesites and a number of heroes to replenish slain models and your general has a command ability to bring back destroyed summonable units.  Reikenor would have to be included as an ally though.

Nagash is indeed pretty easy to facilitate - either running a generic Grand Alliance: Death or the Grand Host of Nagash allegiance from Legions of Nagash.

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Thanks! I’m going to mull over the decision a bit. Right now, I’m leaning more toward Legion and then kinda expanding into Nighthaunt where there’s some overlap. I figure then I’ll eventually have some diversity.

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40 minutes ago, MagisterCrow said:

Thanks! I’m going to mull over the decision a bit. Right now, I’m leaning more toward Legion and then kinda expanding into Nighthaunt where there’s some overlap. I figure then I’ll eventually have some diversity.

Makes perfect sense - I know it's what I'm ultimately doing at the moment.  Around 800 points added to my Legions army, put together the rest of Soul Wars and then build a full Nighthaunt list from there :)

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Legions of Nagash are definitely the way to go if you to use most of death models in an alliance and if you want you could later expand into nighthaunt or flesh eater courts depending on the models (in addition you could allie both nighthaunt and flesh eater courts into legions of Nagash) 

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12 hours ago, MagisterCrow said:

Hello all! New to the forum and to the game and somewhat new to the hobby (dabbled in Warmachine and 40k), and am looking to get into the Death because...well, in every game I’ve ever played the first step for me is “look if there is a way to play necromancer effectively.”

The thing is, I want to do it all. Nighthaunt interests me mostly because I looooooove the way they look.  Reikenor can steal my soul any day. That said, I’m also a huge fan of drowning my opponents in skeleton hordes while my heavy hitters smash into their flanks. I also (eventually, waaaaay down the line) want to work Nagash in...did I mention I GM a lot of RPGs?

So...any advice on how to get started? I’m a blank page, so I’m open to any suggestions. I’m also not in a rush since I’m in the process of moving and won’t be dropping purchases in the near future.

Thanks in advance!

You want to play Legions of Nagash.

With Legions you can do the necromancer power trip better than in Nighthaunt.  You can keep throwing new skeletons/zombies/ghosts at your foes, and you can even return entirely slain units back to the battle by summoning them from nearby grave sites.

If you like the Nighthaunt, you can do this awesome sauce in  Legions of Nagash, because you can use any of the models in the Soul Wars box without worrying about allied points or anything like that.  You also get the diversity you are thinking of, AND you indeed have Necromancers in the army.  Even more fun, Necromancers in the blob of units are some of the hardest ticks to dig out and kill, so if you want to craft stories and backgrounds to your Necromancers, you can easily make a fancy conversion and run him as your necromancer general and be pretty competitive with him also.

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There's enough overlap in units between nighthaunt and the legions that you could start with either and expand into the other later on.

In general, the undead in AoS are like the Undead in oldhammer, in that the core of their army is built on large hordes of slow, weak, fragile infantry, with powerful heroes using spells and other special rules to provide buffs to your units (or debuffs to enemy units) to add strength, healing and recursion to add durability, and repositioning/summoning/alternate deployment to provide speed.  Throw in a few faster units (wolves/cav/fliers/etc) to tie up shooty units, & one or two independently stronger & tougher units (crypt flayers/vargheists/morghasts/blood knights/etc) or monsters to add some extra punch.

There are exceptions to this - flesh eater crypt flayer armies, soulblight blood knight armies, nagash armies, nighthaunt lists built on spirit hosts, hexwraiths, or grimghasts instead of chainrasps, etc.  But those are very much exceptions to the rule, and unless you are specifically setting out to be different, your army will generally look something like:

- strong hero who is also a wizard, preferably riding a monster if you can afford it
- a few extra heroes depending on game size, mostly buffers, healers, & spellcasters
- one or more largish infantry blocks (20+ chainrasps, 30+ ghouls, or 40 skeletons) depending on game size
- additional small units to fill out battle line or battalion requirements
- one or more monsters/behemoths/heavy hitter units to add some extra punsh

ie, something like:

Flesh Eater Courts 1k
- Ghoul King on Terrorgheist
- Crypt Infernal Courtier (must be the general)
- 30 Crypt Ghouls
- 3 Crypt Flayers (normal part of army)
- 3 Crypt Flayers (summoned by ghoul king)

Nighthaunt 1k
- Knight of Shrouds on Ethereal Steed
- Guardian of Souls with Nightmare Lantern
- 2x20 Chainrasps
- 3 Spirit Hosts
- Black Coach

Legions of Nagash (any) 1k
- Vampire Lord on Zombie Dragon
- Necromancer
- 40 Skeleton Warriors with spears
- 2x5 Dire Wolves
- 50 points spare for an extra command point

I'm not saying these are the most competitive 1,000 point targets you could aim for, and by all means if there are particular units or heroes you love start with them.  I just mean these as examples of the sort of unit composition I personally feel you should aim for in a starting out death army, depending on faction.  Each list includes a couple strong support heroes, a single big, powerful centerpiece model, a decent foundation in the faction's relevant infantry core, along with one or two other units to play with.  Each of these lists  would give you a solid variety of tools to let you play around with the faction's individual allegiance rules, allowing you to get a good idea of what the faction in question is all about.

As for where to start in terms of concrete purchases... that's a harder call.

....

The starter box gets you a nice unit of chainrasps and some good characters in the KoSoES and GoSwNL, but the spirit torment is kind of a waste (not a bad unit, but if you use him I'd recommend taking his ghainghast cohort, and those models come packaged with a different, imo better looking spirit torment anyway).  The glaivewraiths are not, imo a very good unit, and while grimghasts are a fine unit, four of them is an unusable unit size (they come in multiples of ten, and their separate box comes with multiples of 10, so no matter how many extra grimghasts you buy the four from the starter box will still be basically unusable).  The executioner is alright, but imo undead heroes should be supporting their units first and foremost, and the executioner doesn't really do that.

If you can split the box that's fine, but I wouldn't pay for the whole box just for the nighthaunt set given how many meh or unusable units there are in it, and for the moment that leaves you trying to buy chainrasps off the secondary market.

...

That's still probably a better starting point than Legions of Nagash really has going.  Their start collecting & army bundle boxes generally include no where near enough skeletons, necromancers, and zombie dragons, and way too many wight kings, grave guard, morghasts, mortarchs, and cavalry units.  Blade of the Blood Queen isn't a terrible starting point, but even there you'll want more skeletons and a necromancer basically right away.  The other stuff in that box isn't bad exactly, but imo none of the mortarchs are as good as a basic vamp lord on zombie dragon, and while morghasts and grave guard aren't exactly terrible, they aren't the units I'd be recommending first to a new player either.  Grave Guard in particular are pretty much outright inferior to Grimghast Reapers in any legion other than the Grand Host of Nagash.  Still, Blade of the Blood Queen is probably the best bundle available for legions in terms of both unit selection and value.

If you  want to just pick boxes out individually, I again recommend 1 zombie dragon, 1 necromancer, 4 boxes skeleton warriors, and 1 box dire wolves, provided you can even find the dire wolves, which have been out of stock for what feels like a solid year now.  That comes out to about us$200, but since it's all separate boxes you can break it up into smaller purchases according to your budget.  Note that, If you ever plan to add a flesh eater courts side list, or if you like the vargheist unit, then you might consider grabbing the flesh eater courts start collecting box instead of the separate zombie dragon.

...

As for Flesh Eaters, they're an odd case.  Their 'start collecting' box is actually a good start, provided you build the crypt horrrors as crypt flayers instead, though you'll want more crypt ghouls and flayers pretty much immediately.  The problem is the courtier heroes, in particular the crypt infernal character which is generally the favorite choice for your general in a lot of FEC lists due to the support they provide to crypt flayers, one of the faction's stronger units.  The problem is that there's no model available for courtier heroes.  You're supposed to convert them from regular models of the units they go with, but since units are purchased in batch sizes in aos, that leaves the rest of the box kind of worthless after however many of the models you convert into courtiers.  It's a real hassle, and is the reason I've never collected a Flesh Eaters side army, despite having a few ghouls and horrors left over from my oldhammer vamp counts army.

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You say you like necromancers and are into GMing so in my eyes there is no choice.  There is only Nagash, Supreme Lord of the Undead, God of Death, The Great Necromancer. 

For a ranged attack he just looks at you.

The dude has nine books, most other wizards are lucky if they have one.

His sword is named Zefetnebtar, which sounds cool as hell.

Stuff dies when he touches it.

And on a practical note, since you're just getting started, there's no faster or less expensive way to get 40% of your army on the table.  

 

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51 minutes ago, Richelieu said:

You say you like necromancers and are into GMing so in my eyes there is no choice.  There is only Nagash, Supreme Lord of the Undead, God of Death, The Great Necromancer. 

For a ranged attack he just looks at you.

The dude has nine books, most other wizards are lucky if they have one.

His sword is named Zefetnebtar, which sounds cool as hell.

Stuff dies when he touches it.

And on a practical note, since you're just getting started, there's no faster or less expensive way to get 40% of your army on the table.  

 

Oh, I’ll work up to him, no doubt. I’m looking to learn a bit (building, painting, playing), but he will be the head of my army one day

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