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Help against Kharadron Overlords?


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I'm sure this has come up before, so if anyone could point me towards a post or a website with some tips I'd be grateful... but I'm really struggling against a friend of mine's Kharadron Overlords army.

I'm primarily a 40k player but I do have some Stormcast - primarily the Stormcast halves of the three starter sets, plus some extras - and I'm finding it very difficult to even make the game interesting for this particular opponent.


  • I can't catch my opponent's units. The skyvessels and skyriggers are too fast for my foot units.
  • When I do catch my opponent's units (with Dracolines, Prosecutors, or a charge from deep striking Annihilators) my attack is blunted by unleash hell and being bombed by the skyvessels, all out defence, etc.
  • Not enough reaches my opponent's units in enough strength to kill anything.
  • The damaged skyvessels are then repaired and fly high, repositioning to finish off my fast units.
  • My opponent then controls the range and destroys my slow units piecemeal.


The above assumes that things have actually gone fairly well for me, and my opponent hasn't simply focused down my fast units before they have chance to do anything.

I'm clearly missing something fundamental about how to play a slow, primarily melee army against the kind of fast, mechanised, shooting army that I'm very used to playing in 40k, and any suggestions would be gratefully received!

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Just now, zilberfrid said:

If that player is using a well balanced army and you are using units from multiple boxes that work badly together it'll be hard.

You could go for objectives and win the game while your opponent shoots, and you can hae relatively tanky mages.

That's a fair comment.

We played an open play mission today that didn't involve any objectives, which made things particularly tricky.

I have considered using mages, but so far they've been focused down before they can do anything. I'm also not really sure how to employ them against him, most of the spells seem relatively short ranged and in AOS spells are cast before moving, rather than after as in 40k, so I'm unsure how I would get in range to do any damage with them.

My army is definitely sub-optimal but I can at least make it interesting against other factions I've played against - just not the Kharadron.

I'm not complaining about the Kharadron here - I actually have a small army of them myself - or my opponent, but I would like to make a game of it in the interests of fun.

What units would be necessary to actually fight the Kharadron?

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Kharadron are great at mobility, their damage is highly focused but good, they have an awful time taking or regaining objectives, and they do very little mortal wound damage. As a result, Stormcast are actually quite good against them, especially with anihilators and other good deep strikers that can hit hard and are tanky enough to shrug off -1 or -2 rend relatively safely. Blocking groups of Liberators are good if not necessarily because they live a long time, but because they're relatively cheap and keep deep strikers more than 9" away from your important stuff. I've seen that Kharadron have a "sweet spot" of about 12 inches, meaning they do their most damage at that range, and so if you have stuff in front and behind your key components placed just so that the KO player needs to place himself 13 or more inches away, the damage falls off a good bit.

Great shooting also helps, and any good KO player will avoid letting strong shooting ever get a shot, but at the same time that gives you a big bubble of safety to place stuff in, so those Longstrike Bows are great for teleporting in, Chunking ships, and then defending big sections of board of they're bubble wrapped right. Lastly, anything flying is very scary to get in melee with for KO, as they can't just bail out from flyers.

So, unit wise, good strong melee deepstrike like Evocators, Anihilators, and other paladins are going to weather the retaliatory overwatch and then chunk the ships to below half which is where you want them. Longstrike bows or that new mega bow hero are great for shooting the bejeezus out of the relatively squishy ships. And lastly, any spell or ability that can affect units that are densely packed for a couple mortals are money because the ships are big clown cars full of squishy, hard to target units.

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Another note is that shooting is polarizing. Either it works great or it collapses. So maybe you were a lot closer to an interesting match than you thought.

I'm no expert in AoS. Wouldn't even call myself skilled in 2 and haven't played 3 at all, so take my advice at its low value.

Grounded Kharadron need line of sight, are slow and hit really hard, a frictionless void is their preferred battlefield so a full table might make it very hard. Almost decent amount of boots on objectives.

Flying Kharadron are different. They are fast, like movement obstructing terrain but have hardly any presence on objectives and don't hit as hard per point.

I think it's still the case that two Aetherwings on an objective beat a fully laden Ironclad.

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Thanks for the replies!

I don't have any Vanguard Chamber Stormcast, although I do have the Knight-Judicator. Otherwise my shooting is currently limited to a Celestar Ballista and three units of Castigators, which seem particularly bad. Still, it's something to think about!

When it comes to deep striking, would you suggest bringing in everything at once and trusting to luck and rerolls with the 9" charges in the hope of maximum damage, or spacing things out to take advantage of the Lord-Imperatant's ability to grant deep strike at 7"? The difficulty with spreading things out is that my opponent can heal his ships for 5-7 wounds every turn, so I really need to take them out in one turn.

Finally, what spells would you suggest? The only thing I can think of of that can reach out and do direct damage is the Everblaze Comet, which I took in my last game but didn't get to use as my wizard was focused down turn one.

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