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Dan.Ford

Game workshop and Death Alliance.

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Hi all AoS players,

This is a general shout out that Game workshop needs to pay more attention to the Match play for Death alliance.

As a AoS player I want to see all 4 Grand Alliance represented equally (or-there-abouts).

All players at any club or any Event will see that the Death numbers are down in a big way.

The posts on the Death sub forum is the lowest and is 40-50% lower than Order & Chaos.

I feel the Death alliance warscrolls need a closer look at, for points value. Also the issues on casting and other issues etc. Yes other Alliances also have this BUT they hit Death particularly hard in Match play.

 

Job done, as said above just a shout out, I thought it needed to be said.

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You are not alone, brother, I feel the same way. Death is undercared in all aspects, from only one battletome to the absence of plastic blood knights. Let's hope new skeletons indicate that GW has not forgotten us.

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I too hope the Aelfs, Undead and regular Humans will be covered soon aswell. All key elements to fantasy.

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im pretty sure GW is painfully aware of this, and its just a matter of soon we will se atleast one death release. i just started a deathrattle army in high hopes that we will see something soon (wishful thinking), and ofc elves and regular humans are requested aswell, wich equals moneyz for GW

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2 Shadespire games in a year should be some kind of a clue that the Realm of Death will get a lot of attention soon.
I wish that all the skrletons will be raised orruks/seraphon/duardin(!!!). It would be quite cool and good for their IP to relaunch death from scratch. I think Katophranes got revealed to give some clue about it.


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So here's where I believe the problems with Death are.

Ignoring Compendium, lets look at how many armies translated over from 8th into each Grand Alliance:

Order - Empire, Dwarves, Lizardmen, High Elves, Dark Elves, Wood Elves

Chaos - Warriors of Chaos, Chaos Daemons, Beastmen, Skaven

Destruction - Orcs and Goblins, Ogre Kingdoms

Death - Vampire Counts

Obviously, Death has the least. Then lets take a look at how many armies came out for each Grand Alliance:

Order - Stormcast Eternals, Fyreslayers, Kharadron Overlords, Sylvaneth (Seraphon as no-model release)

Chaos - Khorne Bloodbound, Disciples of Tzeentch, Everchosen (Daemons of Khorne as no-model release part of Blades of Khorne, Clans Pestilens)

Destruction - Ironjawz (Bonesplitterz, Beastclaw as no-model releases)

Death - None (Flesh-eater Courts as no-model releases)

What this really shows, is that in the 2 years since Age of Sigmar came out, GW haven't really released a lot of new factions for Age of Sigmar. They've literally released new models for 8 factions.

So not only do Death have the least amount of Old World factions contributing to their Grand Alliance, but they haven't received any model release since the End Times.

 

But the biggest problem Death has IMO, is Nagash. For Death's sake, Nagash would honestly be better off dead.

Here's the problem with Nagash. He's your typical maniacal overlord. If he says jump, you jump. If he says fight, you fight. But at the moment, Nagash has said "Yeah... nah... lets stay in Shyish for a while longer, I'll be down in my lab". So GW have written themselves into this hole, where Undead are being secretive and holed up in Shyish until Nagash gives the word to march out into the realms and exact his plan. The issue is that because they're being so secretive and under wraps and none of them are big enough honcho's to act out on their own, it's really hard to develop a new faction for them.

Nagash needs to go to sleep, so other powerful characters (but not god-like), can spread their influence again. Neferata and Mannfred start their own Vampire covens, Arkhan takes control of the Deathrattle legions, some other Mortarch takes control of some new undead faction.

Edited by someone2040
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@someone2040 I don't think Nagash needs to leave, I mean Chaos can work with Archaon, Death can work with Nagash. In essence they are the same posterboy for the Grand Alliance. If both are the uniters or 'super' generals that's okay aswell.

As mentioned elsewhere one of the possible reasons to why Death takes so long can be because of new model ranges. I don't expect a complete overhaul, I do expect to see TK stuff being blended in, but with a Morghast look. Thinking Archers, Skull Catapult, Bone Giant, larger Tomb Guard (with Stormcast stats) and maby even more.

What Death needs first though is a clear indentification of sub-factions. This is where it's creative issue could come from. Everything was put under VC for a long period of time, the issue with that is that some simple Undead designs never really evolved beyond that.
I hope that we'll see Death be sub-divided in rougly 3 factions, who can all be lead by Nagash but otherwise function very well on there own.
Those would be:

- Deathrattle + Deathlords + Deathwalker, the boney Undead Champions as you come to know and love (doesn't need a drastical ammount of newer models but could use it!)
- Flesheaters + Beasts of the Grave + Bat Swarms, we allready have it explored a little, would be nice to see a Strigoi Vampire leading this. 
- Nighthaunt + Mournghul, still needs to be expanded but would be the Spiritual Champion branch.

What this would simply lead to is at least 3 clear factions, being Undead, Ghouls and Ghoulish creatures and Evil Spirits. 

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Death will take me before I see a release it seems.

Still waiting GW still waiting...

 

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Death are very good and need no help. too big blocks of zombies and you  will win any match that normal models can claim objectives in :D

Edited by ageofpaddsmar

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1 hour ago, ageofpaddsmar said:

Death are very good and need no help. too big blocks of zombies and you  will win any match that normal models can claim objectives in :D

Help isn't really required, though the way they play out now isn't really too exciting.
The prime issue with Death versus old Tomb Kings and Vampire Counts is that they used to be able to summon units really good and this was what players expected to be their thing.

Currently due to the way summoning works for matched play there is very little reason to actually go that route. If there is a rule in the basic Core Rules that is arguably too restrictive it would be the rule for summoning, especially when we compair it to the shooting phase or abilities like Sayl who practically to things that summonning can't even come close to.

Personally however I do believe that Battle Traits are the ideal way to resolve this. There are a couple of things that have come to mind for me:
- Battle Trait 'swarm', likely useful for Ghouls, the whole faction simply said has 100 points to spend for free for Summoning. This certainly is good but represents the idea that Ghouls are hiding and simply are awaiting Death to reveal themselves. It's hardly too powerful but certainly a nice little boost. A boost not unlike what we see in other factions in my opinion.
- Battle Trait 'wargrave'; likely useful for Deathrattle/Nagash followers, the whole simple idea here is that if you destroy oppossing units you obtain 1 wargrave point per destroyed enemy unit which allows you to summon up to 100 points non-Hero, non-Monster. These points are cullumative. You can stack them but lose them all once you attempt to summon. 
- Battle Trait 'haunting spirit'; you keep a tally of Nighthaunt models that you own that are destroyed. Once per turn you can return a Nighthaunt model to the game once per battle with 1 wound. At the end of your combat phase this model is removed again and cannot be returned this game. 

To me these three are just a few sketches of how Summonning will practically remain the same but become a more fundamental part to Death. In addition this also means Death has a lot of potent mechanics to return stuff. Even a Mournghul if you so feel inclined! 

My moral is, give these a test, House rules for the win!

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14 hours ago, someone2040 said:

So here's where I believe the problems with Death are.

Ignoring Compendium, lets look at how many armies translated over from 8th into each Grand Alliance:

Order - Empire, Dwarves, Lizardmen, High Elves, Dark Elves, Wood Elves

Chaos - Warriors of Chaos, Chaos Daemons, Beastmen, Skaven

Destruction - Orcs and Goblins, Ogre Kingdoms

Death - Vampire Counts

Obviously, Death has the least. Then lets take a look at how many armies came out for each Grand Alliance:

Order - Stormcast Eternals, Fyreslayers, Kharadron Overlords, Sylvaneth (Seraphon as no-model release)

Chaos - Khorne Bloodbound, Disciples of Tzeentch, Everchosen (Daemons of Khorne as no-model release part of Blades of Khorne, Clans Pestilens)

Destruction - Ironjawz (Bonesplitterz, Beastclaw as no-model releases)

Death - None (Flesh-eater Courts as no-model releases)

What this really shows, is that in the 2 years since Age of Sigmar came out, GW haven't really released a lot of new factions for Age of Sigmar. They've literally released new models for 8 factions.

So not only do Death have the least amount of Old World factions contributing to their Grand Alliance, but they haven't received any model release since the End Times.

 

But the biggest problem Death has IMO, is Nagash. For Death's sake, Nagash would honestly be better off dead.

Here's the problem with Nagash. He's your typical maniacal overlord. If he says jump, you jump. If he says fight, you fight. But at the moment, Nagash has said "Yeah... nah... lets stay in Shyish for a while longer, I'll be down in my lab". So GW have written themselves into this hole, where Undead are being secretive and holed up in Shyish until Nagash gives the word to march out into the realms and exact his plan. The issue is that because they're being so secretive and under wraps and none of them are big enough honcho's to act out on their own, it's really hard to develop a new faction for them.

Nagash needs to go to sleep, so other powerful characters (but not god-like), can spread their influence again. Neferata and Mannfred start their own Vampire covens, Arkhan takes control of the Deathrattle legions, some other Mortarch takes control of some new undead faction.

Nagash is Death, Death cannot DIE.

 

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Just allowing units to grow above their starting wounds would be a help. Gives zombies, skells et al a chance to get some free extra bodies early game to soak damage. 

Summoning works fine as an alternative deployment method and I'm loving exploring the options with that and Nagash at the moment. 

Few point tweaks and we aren't too far behind chaos and order. The real issue in my opinion is for an army built around board control and resililiance against destruction they out perform is in every way. Play against a stonehorn with and without battle brew to see the difference. And our survival mechanism in the ring to counteract such things was (rightly) nerfed. Just that other things weren't and we got left for dead. 

 

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Personally, I think the biggest issue GW will have with death, is bringing diversity of playstyle to the different factions. FEC already functions as a "resurrect dead guys" faction. So will deathrattle and deadwalkers if they ever flesh those out. I have been thinking about it a lot, but I think they can get some very playable factions with only a few new boxed sets/tweaks. 

The one faction that annoys the pants of me (and that makes thematic, strong mono-faction armies nearly impossible), are those deathmages. If they just scratched that idea and spread out those models a bit, you could at least stick to workable factions. So you'll have to forgive the long wishlist: 

Deathrattle:

- Toss the necromancers in there for magical  support (maybe even make a new champion like a lich priest/king who's a lvl2 caster).
- Make new skeleton horsemen with spears (same horses as the hexwraiths ie, no armor) and toss in a seperate sprue with quiver armed torsos/bows for horseman archers. Current warscrolls are just fine for them
- Include said separate bowman sprue twice in the skeleton warrior box so they can be upgraded to skeleton archers. (or sell them separately for an upgrade).
- Redesign the black knights so they  actually feel more like mounted grave guard instead of the very weak models they are now. 
- Possibly make a new chariot sprue with armored horses (like the black knights), crewed by grave guard. 
- Possibly redesign the screaming skull catapult?

Anyway, I think this could be a very playable faction this way with not too many new releases (since most designs were already made elsewhere). 

Soulblight:

- Redesign the fell bats
- Redesign the bat swarms.
- Redesign the blood knights to be minimum of 2 models in a unit, but make them almost hero-esque in powerlevel, like the Archaon Varanguard (aka 100p per model or so, but quite the heavy hitters that can regen if they kill stuff). 
- Possibly make a dual kit for those blood knights with wing bits, alternate heads and claws to turn the horses in abyssal terrors with a new battleline type of vampire troops riding a "light version" of the current abyssal terror vampire lord (faster, bit harder hitting but less armored than blood knights, like 1-4 models in a unit)
- Possibly add wolves into the mix too (the current space wolve fenrisian wolves will do fine). 

Make it a very elite, low model count army with some backup from the "creatures of the night". And give them a proper faction name like "Aristocracy of the night" FFS! ;) It should definitely make them feel and play in a unique way for death. Facing only a handful of vampire, but knowing you still might be in trouble...

/rant over

 

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In the Nagash, Undying King book, Nagash is very much portrayed as wanting to sleep to recover his strength after being wounded and that his Mortarchs are each (all 12 of them) are massively powerful in their own right.  Nagash can very much play the long game (as in sleep for a thousand year) and it's only during his more lucid moments he "goes off on one".

Personally I think that Nagash should take more of a back seat in the way forward.  I think the model is fantastic, but to do the background justice he should be able to annihilate pretty much everything else on the board with barely any effort.

I'd like to see something brand new rather than trying to apply a sticking plaster/band-aid to the current range (which can come later).  There's been an uncountable time between the world that was and now, so there's bound to have been new civilisations built and destroyed during that time.  Maybe there's some more technological civilisation that brings in necro-technomancy?  They don't even need to be human - something feral/bestial that retains it's aggression/speed at the cost of being difficult to control once it hits the enemy.  The possibilities are massive if you think a bit outside the regular stereotypes.

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A "Technomancy" army with a similar aesthetic to Alchemists of Dirz from Confrontation would be a great way to expand Death. 

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On 5/28/2017 at 10:08 PM, Dan.Ford said:

Hi all AoS players,

This is a general shout out that Game workshop needs to pay more attention to the Match play for Death alliance.

As a AoS player I want to see all 4 Grand Alliance represented equally (or-there-abouts).

All players at any club or any Event will see that the Death numbers are down in a big way.

The posts on the Death sub forum is the lowest and is 40-50% lower than Order & Chaos.

I feel the Death alliance warscrolls need a closer look at, for points value. Also the issues on casting and other issues etc. Yes other Alliances also have this BUT they hit Death particularly hard in Match play.

 

Job done, as said above just a shout out, I thought it needed to be said.

I strongly suspect once Shadespire is released, everybody will be moaning there are too many Death releases ;) 

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14 hours ago, Gaz Taylor said:

I strongly suspect once Shadespire is released, everybody will be moaning there are too many Death releases ;) 

I hope so. God knows we need it. More big stompy toys, maybe some d&d style flesh golems/Frankenstein dudes for deadwalkers. conceptually they can do almost anything, just a matter of wanting to. 

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Ohhh that would be a great way of showing some non-human undead. Take a mix of larger beast-like models from various lists, like ogre/lizardman/ratogre/Black Orcs, and make hybrid corpse monsters, animated by death magic


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2 hours ago, CrimsonKing said:

Ohhh that would be a great way of showing some non-human undead. Take a mix of larger beast-like models from various lists, like ogre/lizardman/ratogre/Black Orcs, and make hybrid corpse monsters, animated by death magic


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This!

22 hours ago, SpiritofHokuto said:

A "Technomancy" army with a similar aesthetic to Alchemists of Dirz from Confrontation would be a great way to expand Death. 

And that!

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What one might call Technomany, I would call 'the Frankenstein faction'.

I believe that there is a really large option to create a 4th Death faction in the form of deranged humans who indeed use their technological knowledge to improve on undead beings. Frankensteins if you will. Akin to what Malifaux represents with their steam punk Necromancers and also what has become a bit of a popculture trend ever since Frankenstein came to the big screen.

A cool thing about this idea is that I believe that we have confirmation on Nagash ruling over some mortals aswell. In essence they'd be a reflection of the Freeguild but in a darker necromantic setting. 

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Indeed, a Frankenstein based faction would actually be a refreshing change for the death faction. 

It would also allow for a magic-less faction with lots of lightning generators or even toxic substances. A more "mad scientist" feel that don't really need to be immortal at all. 

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1 hour ago, Killax said:

....what has become a bit of a popculture trend ever since Frankenstein came to the big screen.
 

...First time Frankenstein came to the big screen was in 1910...

Just saying.

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18 minutes ago, Elmir said:

Indeed, a Frankenstein based faction would actually be a refreshing change for the death faction. 

It would also allow for a magic-less faction with lots of lightning generators or even toxic substances. A more "mad scientist" feel that don't really need to be immortal at all. 

steampunk warhammer with crazy mad scientists and wanna be necromancers attracted to nagash and serving him and his followers in exchange for secrets on the afterlife.

sounds awesome.

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So something like Lamasu from Might and Magic: Heroes VI&VII? That would be cool and a great opportunity to insert an interesting character like a genius necromancer who risks his life in order to save his creations from "becoming one in Nagash".

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