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Experimental Rules for Mortal Death faction


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Hey all,

Recently, there was a discussion in another thread about possible future expansion of the Death Grand Alliance to encompass mortal followers of Nagash. So, not being able to leave well enough alone, I ended up having to work it out of my system by writing some custom warscrolls for such a cult. AOS is supposed to be founded on the "By your leave" sort of idea - so why not, for a bit of fun.

I call it the Cult of Samhain, ancestor worshipers/church of Nagash. I've attached the "Warscrolls" below. The other element in doing this is to help myself learn a bit more about what it means to be balanced and how to create "Mini" factions within a small number of models.

Ballpark points:

  • High Priest on Ziggurat - 300 (Max 1)
  • Alter of Undeath - 200
  • Receptor - 120
  • Berzerkers - 100 (for 5) (Cult of Samhain Battleline)
  • Flagellants - 100 (for 10) (Cult of Samhain Battleline)

Allegiance Ability: "Close to Death at Last" - When a Cult of Samhain model is slain in the combat phase, it can immediately attack with all its weapons.

Some opportunities for themed battalions based around the Receptor Specializations.

Please tear this apart - be brutal. I would like to play a game with the rules to see how they fare - and that will be the real test of this - but I'm not a top flight competitive gamer so I wouldn't mind some input for this!


Thanks Folks,








[Edited to change Battleline points]

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I only read your battleline - too expensive for sure. Flagellants might be better off at 100 or 120, 100 for the Berzerkers. As well for the Flagellants, their double blade ability maybe should be the same as every other double blade ability in the game? I could be wrong about that one.

Cool idea! How are you going to model them?

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Yeah, you are totally right about that - changed those there. The points were an after thought sort of thing.

I believe the double bladed rule is the same as in other places - think it's the same wording as on the Kairic Acolytes.

well to start - stand ins. Then for models, was thinking half Druid/half Babylonian sort of feel, particularly for the Priests themselves. The receptor could really be any sort of thing altogether. Possibly base the flagellants on Acolytes. Chaos Warshrine/the top of the Mortis engine for Alter with Flagellants underneath. The magic throne scenery steps base plus a shine being dragged chariot style by Flagellants roped to it for the Ziggurat. Those were the initial thoughts anyway!

@Praecautus Do! I really had fun doing this. Would certainly have another craic at this after some feedback.


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I've been working on something like this on the side after discussing it in the aforementioned thread. I'm really enamoured with the idea personally, I think it could be really cool.

Personally I was imagining it as a blend of Nighthaunt and Mortals, with reincarnation and transference being the main theme. Aiming to post mine up when it's done and compare notes. :)

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Hmmm it seems too much like devoted of sigmar if I was going to do a mortal unit I would make a thrall unit that you could use in various ways. Like necromancers can inflict wounds on them to restore models to a unit or vampires devouring them to recover wounds. Or something like that. 

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Alright, you said to be brutal so here I go.

I think you have a a theme problem.  In reading the warscrolls a number of the abilities and the allegiance ability are very similar to Devoted to Sigmar and Khorne Bloodbound abilities. I think you have some great ideas but that you need to sit down and figure out what you want the theme of DEATH MORTALs to be. For example Khorne Mortals are all about using heros to buff troops to get more attacks and when models die, that resulting in more attacks or wounds. The whole kill, kill, kill thing!  Nurgle Mortal is about making them more resilient and mortal wounds. Tzeentch Mortals are all about magic, controlling dice through change, and range attacks.

So what do you want Death Mortals to be about? Frenzy? Maybe, I mean I get that they want to kill themselves to join the underworld, but that just plays like Khorne or Devoted. Maybe one of the reasons GW hasn't made Death Mortals yet is because its hard to do. Making them resilient because they are kept alive through necormancy or whatever sounds a lot like Nurgle abilities. Summoning dead zombies or spirits sounds sorta like Demons or Serpahon.

Some ideas on how to figure this out:

Look at Necrons, what is there theme?

Think about pairing the mortals with another death subfaction, how can they play off of those models and current rules?  While quickly looking through the death scrolls, I was thinking of pairing mortals with the nighthaunt subfaction. Create some sort of rules about taking bravery tests. Maybe when mortals kill a model, that unit takes a bravery test and if they lose it then they suffer a mortal wound as the spirits terrify them.  I also like the thrall idea above. How could you tie mortals into vampire apprentices? Maybe as they cause wounds they get faster or stronger (drinking the blood)?

Leave it how you have it, they are your rules and your ideas! You have that freedom. :)

Ideas on specific scrolls:

Adding a spirit host when a model dies seems strong as spirit hosts have two wounds.

The Receptor abilities seem more like command traits or special items.


Finally, I would encourage you to watch the video by vince venturella  on youtube about color pie and age of sigmar.

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When looking through Death as a whole the main thing I miss is valid use of magic.

We have these cool summon options and wizards in the form of the Deathlord characters, the vamps and the Necromancer but nothing to really support this in pitched battles. Taking multiple wizards doesn't really add anything and big wizard characters like Arkhan and Nagash have to give up their biggest strenght. Summoning is pretty cool as deepstrike/sideboard tech, but I think there is room for improvement.

I think it would be cool if a Mortal Death faction could support the usr of magic through prayer and sacrifice (giving up their life, body, soul etc.).

Something like cheap guys that basically act as vassals to summon and cast through, providing a discount for summoned models and safety and range for Wizards at the risk and requirement of unit positioning and bad combat stats.

Other options could be apprentice wizards chasing immortality through lichdom, bringing back some of the Tomb Kings style heroes without the obligatory Egypt theme.

The recent Tzeentch additions are a great indicator of "new" ways a faction can go, I'd love to see Death take a new direction too.

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Pfft.. that wasnt Brutal at all :P

Excellent feedback, from everyone. I'm going to take some time and look at reworking this based on the feedback. I want to work towards a reasonably core set of scrolls which are in and of themselves versatile with respect to pulling a totally different faction and play style out of it. (Different Mortal cults types idolising or possessed by different spirits or entities).

Thanks folks.


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